Penske Racing Shocks...install & initial review - Harley Davidson Forums



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Penske Racing Shocks...install & initial review

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Old 05-05-2008, 02:11 PM
Bryan TTM Bryan TTM is offline
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Default Penske Racing Shocks...install & initial review

first off if you dont want to read bc its long or boring, just find you a wave or oil post.....most of you older members have read my many product review posts.....i got lots of parts that costs abunch but did not work as well as hoped....just bc i spend a grand on something doesnt mean it works, as demonstrated in the past it aint no big deal for me to pull a part off and leave it to gather dust....this is the 4th pair of shocks on my Street Glide, 5th countin the stock ones....i've run progressive 412's, draggin baggers(half-*** attempt at an on-board compressor), Platinum Air, & now a set of the Penske Racing Shocks.....it took a few weeks to get them bc they are hand built at the Penske facility to my specs and riding style...then Howard(owner of Motorcycle Metal, a forum sponsor) gets them to fine tune them before shipping them to me....i know you've seen his posts, he's an old guy like me who just dont get the doodad crew(me neither) but the man makes a living setting up race bikes....i know some will say "i aint gonna race it, its a harley"....i discount what those folks have to offer concerning motorcycles and hope they find their nirvana....to me its about how a machine performs....the Penske name stands above all others in many areas of motorsports with their shock r&d being second to none....i have previosly run Penske's on my outlaw promod and gained 1/10th sec in an eighth mile(phenominal gain) by just keepin the tires planted the whole run....i've seen some posts questioning how come it makes a loud hit goin over bumps...answer is the shock is topping out(stretched to the limit)...or my bike rides like a rigid(shock compressed to much and cant absorb bumps cause you used all the travel with cheap shocks or a fat ***)....just like your engine sees all kinds of loads at different rpms, a shock does too(not rpm tho, its load or lack of)...the moco built a really cheapo air assist that fills the bill for most(hence all the "how much pressure" posts)....Progressive is ok but its off the shelf and will never give the ability to fine tune....draggin baggers burnt my fender and was the worst of all i've tried....Platinum Air was the best i've had so far but at 1200 per set, it had one too many air leak probs on big rides...plus they had lots of give to them....give is ok for some, but for a performance ride it aint....many will think performance means to the limit or all out...not true, it means "optimize"...instead of rubber bushings, delron is used...the Penske shock is a single-adjust coil-over design, much lighter in weight than any other shock on the mkt and can be had in any length you desire....it is filled with nitrogen over oil, controlled by six interchangeble disks that limit and manage compression and rebound...the coil sets the bike in a neutral position in the travel...these shocks offer 3" travel and have a fat shaft to control any side loading(creates stiction, a term in the shock world for side loadin the piston)....stiction will affect how the shock works makin it stick instead of freely move up & down....installation is almost straightforward with some measurements to take and some shimming involved(no real big deal unless of course you have trouble takin the derby cover off)....there are two adjustments you can make on the shock, one is crankin down the coil spring which is the preload on adjustment...the other is the comp/rebound which will let you stiffen or soften the shock as per your liking....changing disks(on the inside of the shock body) or changing the nitrogen pressure are two more adjustments easily made by any competent wrench or just send em back to howard...in order to tailor them to you & your style youre gonna hafta do some work(ride the bike)...its not a plug & play but not bad...here's some pics

how they came


countin the flats on the rebound/comp adjuster....
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Old 05-05-2008, 02:51 PM
US Rider US Rider is offline
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Default RE: Penske Racing Shocks...install & initial review

Nice lookin shocks,thanks for thereview Brian. This sounds right up my alley. It would be good to know what length shock you used. I'll be looking forward to updates on performance.
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Old 05-05-2008, 03:15 PM
sublime_ac sublime_ac is offline
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Default RE: Penske Racing Shocks...install & initial review

Excellent review, I look forward to hearing more on these man. I ran a Penske on my CBR and I wouldn't use any other brand of aftermarket shock.
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Old 05-05-2008, 04:39 PM
Bryan TTM Bryan TTM is offline
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Default RE: Penske Racing Shocks...install & initial review

12" length.....been out on the highway and side streets....it feels as tho i'm sittin lots lower than with the Plat's at the sweet spot....now the front needs help....the bike loves the highway, it glides over bumps and dips....sidestreet action is taught but not harsh....its very apparent the rear wheel is on the ground....judgin from the tell tale oil line on the shaft(would indicate how much they compressed) it had 3/8ths more travel....i wasnt kind to the bike....i'm leaving wed for a 2 week ride thru the smokies, 2up and loaded....it'll be interesting to see how these Penske's handle that
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Old 05-05-2008, 05:38 PM
jmorton10 jmorton10 is offline
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Default RE: Penske Racing Shocks...install & initial review

Now you need to try a pair of these for comparison:

http://www.cvoharley.com/smf/index.php?topic=13951.0

I am running the same Platinum Bleed & Feed setup as you where & I love it, but I recently bought a set of the Bitubo's to try because of all the rave reviews (I am also on about my 5th set of shocks, just like you)

I haven't gotten around to installing them yet, so I can't give an opinion on them but I may try them this week.........

~John
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Old 05-05-2008, 06:39 PM
Tinkermc Tinkermc is offline
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Default RE: Penske Racing Shocks...install & initial review

you do a good report and photos help
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Old 05-05-2008, 07:23 PM
Biggzed Biggzed is offline
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Default RE: Penske Racing Shocks...install & initial review

Man those sure do sound like the cats ***. So what is the plan for the front? I know Howard has the solution, is that what you're going to do. I've had a couple of conversations over the phone with him. That guy has forgot more about suspension, brakes, and bikes in general than most of us (self included) will ever learn. He's a hell of a good guy for anyone that is considering him as a source to make your bike the most it can be.

Zach

.. No Howard, I haven't had a chance to pull the rotor off to install that new hardware yet. I'm hoping next weekend.
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Old 05-05-2008, 07:30 PM
cowboyglide cowboyglide is offline
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Default RE: Penske Racing Shocks...install & initial review

Great post Bryan.

Mypost is for those of you that have a beer budget or retired like me.
I know the Penske shocks are top of the line in performance and I would love to have a set, but I had a set of Works Performace shocks made for my SG based on my weight and riding style before I knew Penske made shocks for bikes.
I ride very aggressively and the Works shocks I haveare the best performing shocks I have ever had on any of my Harleys.
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Old 05-05-2008, 07:32 PM
Bryan TTM Bryan TTM is offline
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Default RE: Penske Racing Shocks...install & initial review

right, and from talkin with him...he approached Penske and has done lots of the r&d for the harley shocks....they assemble the components in their shop....as for the front, dunno yet....tryin to tell myself its fine, but after runnin the Penske's on the rear i'm thinkin i aint gonna ever convince myself the front feels good
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Old 05-05-2008, 07:32 PM
Comfortably Numb Comfortably Numb is offline
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Default RE: Penske Racing Shocks...install & initial review

Nice write up Bryan....Thanks. I appreciate it.


CN
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