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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Howdy! I'm a 165 lbs rider, and am about to replace the shocks on my 1979 yamaha xs750 special.
I believe they're currently OEM, so quite a bit squishy. Looking forward to getting a tighter feel, especially for when hitting pot holes and not going for a bouncy carnival ride for several seconds there after.
I also have been doing a lot of riding on a new bike, from 2014. It's a royal enfield Continental GT 535 with only 2K miles on it. The suspension feels excellent. Nice and firm, giving lots of control. The bike is around 80-90 lbs less itself though.
My ladyfriend also likes to hop on board sometimes for an evening jaunt. Together we total under 300, maybe around 280-290 lbs.
I see lots of good reviews about Progressive 412 series shocks. There are normal versions and there are heavy duty versions. I believe the heavy duty versions are catered towards those with a weight of around 240 lbs or more.

It may be an obvious answer.. but what are the consequences of having heavy duty shocks as a solo rider of 165 lbs, and would it really be that bad?
It would be nice to be able to hop on with my passenger and not have to have a saggy performance. I myself can handle the idea of riding with some extra firm response. Might actually enjoy it. Thing is, it takes 300$ to try this. Can't really return them i don't think.

Any thoughts?
Thanks!
 

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Progressive 412 heavy duty shocks are fantastic and the 'spring rate,' which is adjustable will allow you to set them for more or less weight.:grin:

Sam:nerd:
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Progressive 412 heavy duty shocks are fantastic and the 'spring rate,' which is adjustable will allow you to set them for more or less weight.:grin:

Sam:nerd:
I have to admit i have been a bit confused about user adjustments on shocks. From what i understand, it adjusts the amount of "slag" that the springs are positioned at, basically lowering and/or raising the springs a little bit this way or that, and thus also obviously impacting the tension since you're going to be at a different spot in the overall spring action.
But am i wrong about this? I wouldn't want to be making ride height adjustments in order to adjust the tension.... or would i?? :)
 

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I have Progressive fork springs and shocks on my bike ('78 Suzuki GS1000E) and they have been very good over the years. You want your suspension to handle your weight but be compliant enough to absorb bumps without transmitting the shock of bumps to you. You might want to call them for further information so you will pick the proper range.
 

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Hard to beat the 412s, and if you plan to ride two-up much of the time, I'd go with the heavy duty springs and not look back... given the age of your bike's factory shox, I think you'll find the 412s a refreshing improvement, but I've traded them out on a bike that had less that 10K miles on it... the 412s aren't the highest tech, nor the most costly, but I've found them to be very durable (about 200K miles on em from several bikes) and a good blend of quality and price...

Ya, I know that sounds like na advertisement -- I Like `em

-- Larry
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
that's really helpful to hear, thanks!
I actually ended up having a phone call with Progressive Shocks yesterday. It was very informative and i have to say they are quite impressive with their openness for answering questions.

Basically the guy said that he strongly recommends going with the standards not the heavy duty, given my weight of around 165 and our total weight of under 300 when my lady friend is on board. His main point is that most people don't know that the standard versions, when adjusted to be stronger, actually reach well into the heavy duty range. He said a lot of customers assume that there is not much overlap, but he says that the standards can more or less be adjusted to be the same strength as nearly the middle of the heavy duty shocks, and that it just so happens that they're probably good to up to exactly where i need them to be for my 2 Up scenarios.

This means i could LEAVE them adjusted for my solo stuff to be rather stiff as well, which i might enjoy for a sportier feel, or i could bring it down for solo stuff.

Most importantly of all, he said that if i got the standards and wasn't satisfied, that i could reach back out to them directly and do a clean swap for the heavy duty ones. That's some seriously good customer treatment right there.

So, if i can justify dropping 300$ on shocks, i'll go with the standards.

He was actually pretty firm about me not going with heavy duty ones. I think i'll take his word!
 

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Yes, I'd take his word.
My '76 Goldwing came to me with some kind of air over coil spring shocks. Even with no air in them, that thing rides rough enough to hurt my back on some bumps.
If I ever get around to finishing the restoration of that bike, those stiff shocks will be gone.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Yes, I'd take his word.
My '76 Goldwing came to me with some kind of air over coil spring shocks. Even with no air in them, that thing rides rough enough to hurt my back on some bumps.
If I ever get around to finishing the restoration of that bike, those stiff shocks will be gone.
Gotcha, thanks. It's funny to imagine an old bike like this having too stiff of shocks to the point of being painful, since now all these bikes are so squishy. But i suppose a shock is a shock is a shock, and this bike could be too stiff! I've maybe been over correcting in concept and should just stick to what is recommended.
They're expensive though. Do other companies make adjustable shocks that are decent quality but like, half the price?
I know one gets what they pay for, but when restoring a bike the to do list can pile up a tab in a heartbeat.
 

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If you have been riding stock shocks of that age, the springs are the only thing working. You will be pleasantly surprised with the new ride quality.
 

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Basically the guy said that he strongly recommends going with the standards not the heavy duty, given my weight of around 165 and our total weight of under 300 when my lady friend is on board. His main point is that most people don't know that the standard versions, when adjusted to be stronger, actually reach well into the heavy duty range... I think i'll take his word!
Yep... I would too (I forgot to add that my passenger and me total close to 450# -- oops), and even at my weight I almost always had them on the lowest setting -- oh, one other issue with the last of my bikes that had them -- I got them to send 1/2" shorter units, so i didn't want to ground in the corner (HD Ultra).
 
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