Shock Setup

Offroad VW based vehicles have problems/insights all their own. Not to mention the knowledge gained in VW durability.

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JRam1979
Posts: 10
Joined: Mon Nov 13, 2017 10:51 am

Shock Setup

Post by JRam1979 » Mon Nov 13, 2017 11:17 am

Trying to find more information on this kind of a shock set up. Pors and cons. I like the triple shock setup but would like more info on how to set it up.
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JRam1979
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Re: Shock Setup

Post by JRam1979 » Mon Nov 13, 2017 11:23 am

Btw the picture is not mine. Just using it for a reference

Ol'fogasaurus
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Re: Shock Setup

Post by Ol'fogasaurus » Mon Nov 13, 2017 12:06 pm

JR, I am going to recommend some serious reading (searching). Several years ago Leatherneck did a magnificent thing (not that he hasn't done anything magnificent since then :wink: ) because he took a bunch of different styles of builds and put them in a list. This list is found in the "off-road" section of this forum. viewtopic.php?f=28&t=136758 and viewtopic.php?f=28&t=147628

http://www.shoptalkforums.com/viewtopic ... 8&t=129794 Currently this is 143 pages of information. Not about a rail but good information. CWB built a very unique car and about half way through this post is a lot of information and debate on how to locate shocks for different lengths of travel; this, I think, is what you might want to search for.

In the 4-page list you will find some other builds you might get info from too.

From the picture you posted am I correct that you are going on the street or will it be a dual purpose or off-road mostly/only build. I play in the sand and know a few guys who are very serious about rails and keep building and updating them all the time:
DSCN0786 copy.jpg
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This is just one example but notice that multiple shock are not there. I still see the two or more shock setups once-in-a-while mostly on old rails but, if the owners get serious about things, then those setups seem to disappear. If I remember this was a torsion bar rear setup origionally and now I think it is coilover only. Each time I see it it has morphed into something different.

A good gas coilover combination (I don't like the term "air shock" because of the "Hijacker" style of "air shock" which can become very dangerious if used wrong... personal experience on this noted), once the coil springs on the shock are tuned to the rail they work much better than the multiple shock and torsion bar setup.

Compare buying 6 rear shocks and torsion bars to buying and setting up/mounting gas coil overs and it could be close depending on who you buy from.

The overload coil overs are not really suspension worthy and, when combined with torsion bars, the two "springs" can work against each other (coils and torsion bars are both torsional bars but usually react at different speeds).

Lee
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JRam1979
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Re: Shock Setup

Post by JRam1979 » Mon Nov 13, 2017 2:15 pm

Thanks for the info Lee. It does look like I will be doing quite a bit of research. Here's a picture of my rail. I'd like to start doing more trail running instead of sand I'm trying to figure out the best process

Ol'fogasaurus
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Location: Just north of Seattle

Re: Shock Setup

Post by Ol'fogasaurus » Mon Nov 13, 2017 4:58 pm

Sand riding is similar to off-road in many ways but it is different also. Add to that there is off-road, Off-road then there is OFF-ROAD each of which require different setups.

Shock/dampeners have change so much especially in the last few years. I've noticed on some of the "build" shows on TV they seem to be moving away from group shocks and going more to the simpler coil over gas shocks.

Looking forward to the pictures.

Lee

JRam1979
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Re: Shock Setup

Post by JRam1979 » Mon Nov 13, 2017 9:37 pm

Sorry Lee having issues with posting pictures.

JRam1979
Posts: 10
Joined: Mon Nov 13, 2017 10:51 am

Re: Shock Setup

Post by JRam1979 » Mon Nov 13, 2017 9:37 pm

Sorry Lee having issues with posting pictures.

JRam1979
Posts: 10
Joined: Mon Nov 13, 2017 10:51 am

Re: Shock Setup

Post by JRam1979 » Mon Nov 13, 2017 10:54 pm

Here you go Lee. Looking to convert it to more of a trail than a sand buggy
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Ol'fogasaurus
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Location: Just north of Seattle

Re: Shock Setup

Post by Ol'fogasaurus » Mon Nov 13, 2017 11:33 pm

It looks to be a 4-seater long back style of buggy. It is set up for the sand with the front tires being tractor tires and the rear tires being Sport Tracs which I run on my glass buggy. The MFG. recommends the tire pressure set at 5# and they do work best at that pressure. I am not sure if they are street legal or not and I don't remember who makes them right now.

You have a K&L style AL front beam with conventional VW steering. The beam "looks" to be laid back for a lot of caster which is fairly desirable on the sand. I can't tell for sure if you have IRS or swing axle in the rear but the tire does look to be sitting straight up so a rough guess would be IRS (guessing is a risk to the guesser :roll: ). The fuel tank is located normally, The rear shock look to be gas shocks as I think I see a reservoir.

A grab bar for the passenger, older seats (but comfortable looking), the dash looks to be fairly normal, a cover over your head, the lighting should be OK for off-road but for the street you'd have to check state and fed height limits (as I remember, 20" and 53" are the two limits in the state I live in) but no rear view mirrors (tisk, tisk :wink: )

If you are going to make it street legal then some work is needed. I think I would add front brakes also if you are going to trail ride it. A mechanical E-brake would be a good addition and I might look into some gussets on the cage connections to the frame.

Over all it looks like a pretty darn good start for an off-road rig.
Lee

My opinion is worth slightly less than what you paid for it.

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Sandbar Norm
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Joined: Wed Feb 10, 2010 3:49 pm
Location: Bradenton Fl.

Re: Shock Setup

Post by Sandbar Norm » Tue Nov 14, 2017 9:37 am

JRam1979 wrote:
Mon Nov 13, 2017 10:54 pm
Here you go Lee. Looking to convert it to more of a trail than a sand buggy
Hello, Nice looking buggy.
I would like to ask you something on a different subject. Yours and my buggy are similar but my roof is to low for suspension seat in my buggy.
How tall is your roof at the back side of your drivers seat? From floor to roof?
I'm also doing a rear suspension upgrade (shocks, 3x3, cv, ect.)
Also thinking of the best way to raise my roof.
Image

Ol'fogasaurus
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Joined: Tue Nov 14, 2006 1:17 am
Location: Just north of Seattle

Re: Shock Setup

Post by Ol'fogasaurus » Tue Nov 14, 2017 12:13 pm

That buggy is not mine, I have glass bodied buggies like a Manx or a Mini T +4. That rail is owned by a guy I know; the pictures were taken at different re-build stages of the rail (a constant thing if you allow it and want to be current :roll: ).
sleeved[1].jpg
This slide is compliments of Dustymohave; he is very into off-road racing and this is his recommendation of splicing in/joining tubing and having a strong, worthwhile seam in the process. I have a lot of respect for his knowledge!

Lee
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mlrailguy
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Re: Shock Setup

Post by mlrailguy » Tue Nov 14, 2017 2:11 pm

Yes, if you are going to cut your frame to raise it, DO this at ALL joints. You might be able to lower your seats and lay them back at the same time, saving from cutting frame.

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Sandbar Norm
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Location: Bradenton Fl.

Re: Shock Setup

Post by Sandbar Norm » Tue Nov 14, 2017 2:25 pm

I like the Invader style flat top roof.
Its a lot of work but I have been thinking about raising the middle and upper of the frame. I would need to replace all of the vertical pics from the floor to the middle and a bunch of other stuff. This will also help me with my tie-rod clearance.
Need to start my own build fourm.
Norm

JRam1979
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Re: Shock Setup

Post by JRam1979 » Tue Nov 14, 2017 2:51 pm

Here is mine on a side view.
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Sandbar Norm
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Location: Bradenton Fl.

Re: Shock Setup

Post by Sandbar Norm » Tue Nov 14, 2017 3:24 pm

Hi JRam,
It does look like you have a lot more head room than mine.
From the side of yours, Maybe thinking about adding a few more bars to help in a roll over.
I have rolled mine once and did some front end damage. Cut it off and rebuild.
You never plan on a rolling it but I glad that the roof area was strong.

Image
Image

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