Can I Put A Longer Rear Shock On My Mountain Bike?

Can I Put a Longer Rear Shock on My Mountain Bike

Bike shocks play a crucial role in the comfort and overall performance of a mountain bike; of course, comfort is always one of the priorities of a biker. 

Meanwhile, determining the correct shock size for your bike can be challenging because you want to maintain your comfort.

Hence, if you’re concerned about the shock size suitable for your mountain bike, worry no more; you’re in the right place!

Therefore, can I attach a longer rear shock to my mountain bike?

It’s essential first to note that compatibility is essential when it comes to fixing components on your bikes. A longer shock on your bike has its advantages; however, its disadvantages are quite more. A longer rear shock on your mountain bike will impact your comfort and limit the bike’s movement, including cornering and response to sudden jerks.

In this article, I will explain if attaching a more extended rear shock to your mountain bike is okay. I will also explain the benefits of upgrading the rear shocks on your bike.

Moreover, I will walk you through the appropriate way of choosing the correct rear shock size for your bike, and by the end, you will discover the effects of rear shocks on your bike’s quality.

Can I Install a Longer Rear Shock on My Mountain Bike?

Can I Put a Longer Rear Shock on My Mountain Bike

The truth is that installing a longer rear shock on a mountain bike is not suitable.

Firstly, it’s necessary to note that compatibility is key when installing parts on your bikes, and a mountain bike isn’t an exclusion.

A rear shock plays a vital role in your bike’s overall performance; hence, you must ensure that you install one compatible with your bike.

Truly, a longer rear shock has its advantage: more oil will always be available to absorb the shock more adequately.

However, it also has disadvantages, which outweigh its advantages, and the advantages are what you should consider when installing a new shock on your mountain bike.

The disadvantages include; interference with the wheel and seat tube of your mountain bike during bottom-out and limited overall movement. It includes cornering and response to sudden jerks.

Therefore, a longer rear shock negatively affects the performance of your mountain bike. Thus, installing a longer rear shock on your mountain bike is not okay.

So, if you want the rear shock you want to install to fulfill its positive purposes, don’t choose one that’s longer; rather, it’s essential to choose one that’s compatible with your mountain bike.

What Does Upgrading Rear Shocks Do?

Upgrading rear shocks has several advantages for your bike’s overall performance and comfort.

Therefore, one of the easiest ways to improve the comfort of your riding experience is to upgrade your bike’s rear shock.

Every bike comes with a factory shock, but it would be best to upgrade it, especially if you’re a mountain biker, because factory shocks damage more quickly.

Mountain biking involves riding on rough and tough terrains; hence, your bike will need a more powerful and high-performance shock. 

Which is to easily maneuver through bumps, sudden jerks, descents, turns, etc.

The oil used to absorb shock in your bike takes longer before it finishes in an upgraded shock than in a factory shock.

Also, an upgraded shock helps improve your bike’s traction and suspension travel. With a good rear shock, your bike becomes comfortable to ride. 

Unfortunately, the bike vibrates whenever you ride it if its rear shock is poor, which causes wear and tear to some vital parts of the bike, especially the other suspension components.

In a severe case, the vibrating bike can result in an accident because you won’t be able to handle the bike properly. 

Therefore, rear shocks do a lot to your bike, and it’s advisable to upgrade the one that comes with your bike if you intend to ride it off-road, as it’s essential to your safety and the bike’s movement.

How Do I Know What Rear Shock Fits My Bike?

The fastest way to know the rear shock that will fit your bike is to check your bike’s brand website or contact the bike manufacturer directly.

Another way to choose the correct and compatible rear shock for your bike is by taking appropriate measurements.

Mountain shocks have different sizes, and choosing the right one for your bike can be overwhelming. However, it becomes easy if you can follow instructions.

Therefore, below is the step-by-step guide on how to know the rear shock that will fit your bike.

  • The first thing you need to do is to check the size of the existing shock of your bike, i.e., the factory shock. 
  • To check the size of the existing rear shock, carefully unscrew the bolts that hold it and remove them from the bike.
  • Then, measure the length of the shock and the stroke.
  • The shock length is the distance between the two eyelets on the shock, while you can measure the stroke by subtracting the length when the shock compresses fully from the length when it extends fully.
  • Whatever you got from the measurement above is the size of your rear shock. Therefore, the new rear shock you intend to get must have a similar size to the existing one.

You also need to determine the shock hardware size to get everything together, and the measurement must include the top and bottom of the shock hardware. 

The hardware includes the bolts and bushings that fit into the two eyelets of the rear shock, which secure them to your bike’s frame. 

Meanwhile, it’s also essential to note that there are two types of shocks; air and cool, and each of them has its peculiar functions.

So, the type of shock you will get for your bike depends on the terrain you use.

Air shocks are lightweight, making them more suitable if you don’t like your bike to be heavy. More so, you can easily adjust an air shock on your bike, and it’s versatile.

Coil shocks are more suitable for high-speed bikes and bikes used on rough terrains. 

Coil shocks improve your comfort during off-road rides and help you navigate through bumps, descents, corners, etc.

Do Rear Shocks Affect Ride Quality?

Yes, rear shocks have effects on your riding experience and quality. So, if your bike’s rear shock is working perfectly, it improves your bike’s overall performance.

A good rear shock improves your comfort, especially if you ride off-road. 

Good rear shocks help you maneuver quickly through rough terrains and help you develop optimum control over sudden jerks, bumps, turns, etc.

Riding with a bad rear shock also has disadvantages which include; limiting control over bumps and weakening braking, which causes you to take longer to stop than you used to when riding. 

In addition, riding with a bad rear shock puts excessive pressure on other suspension components, which causes wear and tear to the components.

Moreover, riding with a bad rear shock causes your bike to vibrate while reading which eventually causes your bike’s tire to deflate or damage untimely.

Meanwhile, rear shocks also have advantages and disadvantages; therefore, check the table below to learn about the pros and cons of rear shocks on your bike.

Pros of Rear ShocksCons of Rear Shocks
A rear shock helps increase traction when braking and turning. A longer rear shock reduces mounting speed.
A rear shock is more useful off-road, i.e., on unpredictable and rough trails.It reduces the bike’s stability when damaged.
A rear shock is easy to maintain.It requires frequent maintenance.
A rear shock makes a bike more comfortable to ride.A rear shock is quite costly.
Josh Matthews

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