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Discussion Starter #1
Noobie here and I've been reading alot of the customization threads and I have to say, the desire to customize here is far more contagious than any other forum I'm on, and that includes a few custom motorcycle building forums. Anyway, I mod the hell out of everything I have, so this kind of stuff is nothing new.



I got my 87 TW200 in December and I've enjoyed it thus far. A few issues on it bother me, but for the most part I like it. I've decided to tackle the completely blown rear shock first. I have no clue how a stock TW200 rear shock performs, but I'm guessing it leaves a bit to be desired, judging by everyone's tenacity in trying to swap it out for something more worthwhile...or it could just be the whole customization thing. Anyway, looking at the prices to replace stock, even with used units which are likely already blown out, I was quickly swayed to get something a little more homebrew. I looked at a few shock cross references and cross referenced that with some other information and came upon a VTR1000 Shock.



The VTR1000 shock is 345mm eye to eye (compared to 335mm for the TW200)

60mm stroke (I'm guessing the TW Stroke is around 50mm)

and 900 lb/in spring rate. I found on the old R6 shock swap thread that the manual indicates "728 lb/in for K1 and 1064 lb/in for K2" so this seems to fall in the middle of that

Looks like it has some sort of damping control



I'm thinking on paper this is a great starting point.



I just purchased on ebay a lightly used shock from a VTR1000 and I'll update as this goes.



Here is a picture of the shock:



 

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Discussion Starter #4
I was just looking at the microfiche and it looks like the eye diameters are 10mm:



VTR1000F Rear Suspension - Bike Bandit



So at the very least I'll have to remedy that situation. I might be able to get by with drilling out the bushing, looks like there is alot of meat left on the bushing in the shock. Washers could help me fit it up if the spacing doesnt match, which i'm sure it doesnt, till i get a more permanent solution.
 

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It's always interesting to read about rear shock swaps, seems that the most popular ones add height without adding real travel which is about as appealing as a root canal to a 5'8" fella such as myself.



I'd be willing to straddle an extra 1" or so of seat height for an equivalent gain in travel, but no more at my height.



I've experienced the dunce move of bottoming out while standing lock-kneed, so me and my hernia repair patch understand the value of suspension travel, but me, my 31" inseam, and my KLR also understand what months of commuting on a bike that's too tall for its rider feels like.



Looking forward to a review of the VTR shock!
 

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Interesting and worth trying for cheap.



Has anyone just spent the money and bought a shock designed for the TW (& rider) weight, ratio, and riding style from Works Performance, etc?

I like experimentation but sometimes it makes sense to start right.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Looks like the aftermarket isnt quite there yet. I looked on their website and the TW200 was absent from their application list. I'm not sure what the process is for getting one made, but maybe you could find out. If they did offer one, it seems you could expect to pay around $500 for one.



I dunno, I'm just looking for any damping whatsoever. Would be nice.
 

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No way no how will I shell out $750 for one of those works shocks... It's a TW not a Ducati



A brand new OEM Yamaha shock is only $240.00



Most of us by tw's cause they are relatively cheap compared to other dual sports.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Yeah, thats true, but I'm thinking that the TW shock isnt that durable. I have a 1993 CBR600 with 50k miles and the rear shock is still in great condition (I dont know how). My 1987 TW200 had 4900 miles on it when i got it and the shock was completely blown. Granted, I punished the suspension on the TW far more in the last 400 miles than I have the CBR in 4000 miles, but I'm giving something else a go. Also with a shock price like that and the market like it is for these bikes, each time it went bad you could buy a brand new bike and either part out the old one or sell it outright and probably still come out ahead when it comes to operating costs. Blah, im done talking about the economics of shock swapping.
 

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Looks like the aftermarket isnt quite there yet. I looked on their website and the TW200 was absent from their application list. I'm not sure what the process is for getting one made, but maybe you could find out. If they did offer one, it seems you could expect to pay around $500 for one.



I dunno, I'm just looking for any damping whatsoever. Would be nice.


They are certainly expensive but they make excellent shocks.

They list the Blaster so that shock would work.

Their custom application is easy since we wouldn't be asking for anything new, just adapting what they already have.

They just need the length, end types, weight of rider, linkage or direct, and so on.

They probably don't list the TW because us old and cheap guys who ride them don't buy top of the line suspension.




I have several adjustable sportbike shocks I have bought on Ebay for experimenting with on other bikes so I am all for trying anything.

Actually, any rebuildable shock of the correct length can be set up for a TW by changing the internal shim stacks.

That just requires a lot of time and experimenting to get close.

Really, how fast do we ride our TW's anyway?



Why anyone would pay hundreds for a new STOCK shock is rather beyond me.

They are pretty poor when new.



However, I still have stock suspension on my TW and it is fine with me.


My other bikes are all bigger, faster, and have suspension upgrades.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I received the shock today. A little bummed since the shaft is a bit oily, but the seller had a video and the chassis seemed sorted. I'll try to fit it, since it shouldnt take more than a couple minutes of machine time. If its totally blown too, then another one can still be had cheaply. Its just annoying to not be sure of the baseline for a stock good condition VTR1000 shock















The top eye is a needle bearing sleeve so opening that up will be super easy. Its also the proper width already



The bottom eye is a typical steel sleeved bushing at 10mm ID. There should be enough to open it up. There is about 20mm difference in width of the bottom eyes with the VTR1000 being skinnier, so I can just take up the difference with little spacers.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
How does it match up eye to eye? I'm looking for a bit more seat height...




The VTR1000 shock is 345mm eye to eye (compared to 335mm for the TW200)


After seeing it in the flesh, this still holds true. Sooo...10mm longer (3/8" if you dont play the metric game). I dont have my giant calipers at home, so the eyeball confirms the published data. The spring is thicker, so comparatively, it seems to agree with the spring data I have. I'm gonna guess that if you were to install this shock, you are going to see a 1.5" increase in seat height once you sit on it. This shock also has adjustable preload, so you may be able to adjust to suit.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Soooo....is it mounted yet?


No, but i can offer this:











I mocked it up with 10mm bolts so i guess you can expect it to be about 1/4" higher. This is definitely higher than the TW was before. How much? I dont know, I would guess at least an inch higher, maybe 2 once I am sitting on it (175 lbs). No interference between brake rod and passenger peg brackets.



The springrate definitely stiffer han stock, but in the ballpark. Unfortunately, I am at no additional preload on the shock, so I cant adjust it any less stiff as is. I stood on the pegs and bounced. The forks dipped a bit more readily than the rear. Was strange to have some rebound damping in the rear. That has a screw to futz with as well so once i get it mounted i may be able to dial that in.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I've got the needle bearing sleeve in the Wire EDM to open it up and I can work on the lower end tonight. Plan A for the lower end is press out the steel/rubber bushing and make a new one to press in, maybe out of delrin. It would be nice to make a single bushing that is the full width that the TW200 shock is:



 

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Discussion Starter #20
Drilled out the bottom bushing and made spacers to take up the extra width at the bottom. My upper needle bearing sleeve will get opened up tomorrow. So close, but I have to wait another day to test the fruits of my labor.



I was also looking at the springs next to each other and it seems like it would be a quickie to swap the TW200 spring over to the vtr1000 shock if the VTR1000 spring ends up being too stiff. The TW200 spring looks a little bit shorter but with the preload notches on the VTR1000 body, I could get the same amount of preload that the TW200 spring has stock
 
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