Shock Hoops

I almost dropped the ball on these.  I had finished the whole axle swap and hadn't even thought about shock mounts for the front.  I had considered the weld on ones sold by All Pro Offroad, but I was in a hurry and did not feel like spending any more money than I already had. 

My friend (& welder for this whole project) took a trip with me to the local steel shop for some other odds & ends to finish up my swap.  We got to looking around their scrap section for something to use for hoops and saw a 15 ft length of 1" solid rod.  We knew we didn't have a bender for bending tubing, so we got the rod instead.  The best part is they only charged me $10 for the whole stick.  Not bad for custom shock hoops :)

We got back and grabbed the torch & got to work. I had a general idea what I wanted, but we were really just shooting from the hip when we made these.   With both of us, is was pretty easy to get the rod heated & bent like we wanted.  We ended up with some nice hoops coming off of the side of the frame and a leg from the center back down to the top of the frame.

We originally used some brackets for the top of the shock mounts, but I quickly found that they were limiting travel on compression.  A few weeks after the swap I went back in & welded some new mounts in a little higher up on the hoop and I am pretty pleased with the results.  Right now I am using Rancho 9012 (13" travel) shocks on the front and I am using all of the travel they offer.

I did have to cut pretty far up into the fenders for these hoops, but it has not been a problem.

Some people may not agree, but I am not using bumpstops on the front at all.  On full compression the shock will just bottom out, and the boggers will rub on the inner fender liner.  I have run it this way on a total of 7 full days of trail rides since the swap (3 days of that on very "twisty" terrain) and have not found any real problems with this setup. 

I do think that later this year I may cut these hoops out and switch over to a triple shock mount in the front for more travel.  With my front suspension the way it is, I could easily use 15-16" of vertical shock travel.  On the other hand, I may just leave it alone until I break it ;)

Here are a few pics of the original hoops before I relocated the top mount up about 2.5"

mvc-009s.jpg (31970 bytes)   mvc-008s.jpg (39219 bytes)    mvc-001s.jpg (46429 bytes)

In a few days I should have some pics of the mounts as they are now.


This page last modified 07/10/03

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