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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Ok... long story (not so) short, a series of unfortunate events with the banshee shock and just getting plain old tired of swapping in and out, testing, trying to get nitro filled... I abandoned ship to pursue an endeavor for a quality designed part, which inadvertently led to a great experience.

Consulting my friend on shock options... I have to share this text message:

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The cool part is after working with MSS with measurements and weight, they managed to handle biz with one of their front shocks since I was working off of the banshee dimensions, resulting in a much lower ($260) price point. Total was a little more because I had the shock body and spring powder coated.

Second cool part, as Fred mentioned to me in a post and became a legitimate problem was the extra travel of the banshee shock... there is approx 1.5 inches extra movement the swing arm gets, that lets the tire scrub the bottom of the seat pan when you hit big bumps...

MSS took care of that by hydro-locking the last 1.5 inches of travel to prevent that.

Going to install in the morning, will report back after test ride over varying terrain.

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Yeah, wow. That is awesome service, and a damn good price for a unit.

Crap. Now I don't know what I need next for the Tdub. . .
 

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That is a surprisingly reasonable price since previous custom shock work by others has been quoted at twice the cost.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Installed and tested this morning, on big bumps still hits the seat pan. Compression feels just a little soft, rebound was perfect, just a little too much travel. Working with Tim at MSS to get the hydro lock distance dialed in, going to mark the shock and send it back for adjustments and to get a little more pressure added.

I'd hold off on ordering till we get the measurements dialed in. This is the first one he's built for the TW.

On a side note, aside from needing washers/spacers the fit on the bike is beautiful... the pressure valve clears the shock top plate and doesn't get in the way of the seat or wiring, and has no interference at the bottom. If you have a pressure regulator that can go high enough, you can just pop the seat and adjust the shock pressure for a stiffer/softer compression.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Sounds good. Is he rebuildiing/customizing the banshee or basing a new custom build off of the banshee design specs?
Absolutely, it's a custom build based off of the banshee dimensions. So, for me, I like the bike to initially sit that .5" higher, for those that don't, or have shorter legs, I'm sure you can just have the shock shortened.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Alright, Tim at Marvin Shaw Shocks just finished making some new hydrolock adjustments to limit the shock shaft travel a bit more. I should have it back in a day or two, will report as soon as I get it mounted up, he's got all the measurements for the build now, so if this works... you'll just need to adjust pressure for ride stiffness/softness... since my pressure range is kind of ridiculous.

Hopefully it's dialed in this time...
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Ok, shock is on, we've definitely got the fluid level for accurate hydrolock dialed in. So I think we have a $260ish custom shock alternative using banshee rear shock dimensions (pre 2006). I had him bump the pressure, and just for testing he went from 250 (super squishy) to 300, and for a behemoth my size, ride is way too stiff.

Plan to work with my buddy who has some prime air/gas regulator equipment to back off the psi 5lb at a time till I get it right for me. Someone of average weight and height might want to stay around 250 or less.

The ride itself was a little insane, took it on gravel unimproved roads, paved, and paved+minefield/pothole, no tire rubbing against the seat pan, rebound was perfect, just way too stiff on the dampening.

I really need to plan a day ride next weekend (supposed to be some good weather) and see how she feels off pavement for a good length of time.

Overall, once PSI comes down, this shock will be a satisfactory improvement over stock.
 

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Thanks for sharing. I’d be interested in hearing more details on the spacers required and maybe see some pics. They do all their orders over the phone?
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
Thanks for sharing. I’d be interested in hearing more details on the spacers required and maybe see some pics. They do all their orders over the phone?
They have spacers to shore up their eye size, but I still had to install washers to shore up the last of the empty bolt space...

If someone knows where longer (not larger) spacers could be made... that would be rad.

They are a small family outfit, out of Idaho, they did mine over the phone, I'm sure you could do money order, cashiers check, or something.
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
As for the spacers, I uploaded a picture where you can see the spacers inserted into the eyes of the shock (if they look weird it's because the eye actually has a drilled out bearing the spacers fit into). There's 4 spacer inserts total, and to repeat, they do not fill all the space on the lower and upper shock bolts, you will need to add your own spacer or washers to take up the open space.

During the first install, one of the spacers I had was not milled correctly and required some concussive persuasion and heat treatment just to get the shock to install, Tim (from Marvin Shaw) explained he doesn't have the bolt for every shock to test the inner diameter (understandable), and sent me 2 extra when he returned the shock after making adjustments. First install took almost 1.5 hrs with the bad spacer, yesterday's install... 10min. I spent more time putting the rest of the bike back together than I did on the shock

I'll grab a picture of the spacers out of the eye (sitting on the workbench tonight).

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So the final result has been...? With all your refinement does the bike ride better, have more travel, less harsh bottoming? Ive enjoyed reading your journey from the banshee experience to now; the new custom made shock. So good you saw it through. How would you now compare it to poor old stock?
 

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Discussion Starter #18
It's been awesome, the rear shock was initially better, but because of the change in dampening and rebound (more agile like a MX race suspension) the bike started to suffer with handling until I finished the upgrade to the front forks with stiffer springs and the race tech emulators...

Bottom line, the Marvin Shaw Shock was an awesome upgrade that definitely was an improvement over stock and banshee, but because of my weight until the front shocks were upgraded the performance feel of the bike was delayed.

Installation is easy, you just need washer packs or have some aluminum spacers made that fit the lower and upper shock bolts.

But now, with the suspension completely upgraded... the bike has the dampening and rebound that inspires confidence, let's the bike handle tons better, braking improved, going over bumps and divots are now done with a big fat smile on my face, even steering feels a bit more responsive.

Worth every penny.
 

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Glad to hear.

I put my own project on hold for a similar reason. Have the front forks but needed a monoshock before installing stock TTR 230 forks. I think I'll be contacting Marvin Shaw to have a lighter and slightly taller monoshock built.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Glad to hear.

I put my own project on hold for a similar reason. Have the front forks but needed a monoshock before installing stock TTR 230 forks. I think I'll be contacting Marvin Shaw to have a lighter and slightly taller monoshock built.
Totally understand, I felt so cart-before-the-horse with the rear suspension upgrade.

You won't be sorry with MSS, Tim and his wife are great to work with, very patient and both very knowledgeable.

Let me know how those TTR forks work out, you have a caliper that's matches front disc on the TW?
 
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