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Old 04-14-2013, 09:51 PM   #1
29er
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Default Shocks: Necessity or luxury?

Greetings from Oregon! Allow me to introduce Henrietta. She's a '29 Special coupe with a firewall stamped August 3, 1929. The body assembly plant number indicates she was assembled in Sommerville, MA, and her engine stamp indicates a September 9, 1929 manufacture date. She's got a 6 volt electrical system and mechanical brakes, but has been modified with a Mitchell gear-splitter, 6:1 head, alternator, modern points and halogen headlights.

Henrietta has a new interior, fresh paint and beautiful faux wood dash. She's got less than 1000 miles on her fresh engine and a rebuilt Zenith carb. But Henrietta AIN'T GOT NO SHOCKS!

So there's the question: are they necessary? Bratton's new catalog shows a set of new U.S. tooled shocks (which I assume are the best) for over $1,000. That's a pretty major investment for a luxury item.

What say y'all?

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Old 04-14-2013, 09:56 PM   #2
Racur96
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Default Re: Shocks: Necessity or luxury?

In my opinion necessity.
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Old 04-14-2013, 10:00 PM   #3
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Default Re: Shocks: Necessity or luxury?

I prefer shocks but...
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Old 04-14-2013, 10:23 PM   #4
Gary WA
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Default Re: Shocks: Necessity or luxury?

It does make a difference,get some you'll like um and the ride is much better.
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Old 04-14-2013, 10:26 PM   #5
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Default Re: Shocks: Necessity or luxury?

Why not put modern shock on Henrietta ? Lots cheaper and they work .
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Old 04-14-2013, 10:32 PM   #6
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Default Re: Shocks: Necessity or luxury?

Why not put rebuilt ORIGINALS on it, A lot cheaper & they work !!
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Old 04-14-2013, 10:37 PM   #7
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Default Re: Shocks: Necessity or luxury?

Rebuilt originals do work nice but they are definitely not cheap. Shocks in my opinion are mandatory, running without them can cause some serious issues.
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Old 04-14-2013, 11:41 PM   #8
BILL WILLIAMSON
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Default Re: Shocks: Necessity or luxury?

Them dudes are DANGEROUS without shocks. I wouldn't go out of my neighborhood without them. I'M TOTALLY SERIOUS ABOUT THIS!! One unexpected whip to avoid someone & that dude would be on it's side!!
If that's not the answer you wanted, just wait for someone who says, "Oh! they drive beautifully WITHOUT shocks"!-----And I'll be praying for BOTH of you. Bill W.
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Old 04-14-2013, 11:56 PM   #9
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Default Re: Shocks: Necessity or luxury?

They drive beautifully without shocks, just occasionally into ditches and oncoming traffic.
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Old 04-15-2013, 01:19 AM   #10
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Default Re: Shocks: Necessity or luxury?

Hi, i recommend rebuilt Originals. They work great and I think it's definitely better than driving without or with the cheap imitations.
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Old 04-15-2013, 01:34 AM   #11
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Default Re: Shocks: Necessity or luxury?

I agree with those who say rebuilt originals. I went with the recommendations of many here and got a set from Ron Paul. His info is under plucks sticky thread at the top of the page. I am very happy with the quality and Mr. Paul is a wonderful person to deal with.
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Old 04-15-2013, 01:39 AM   #12
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Default Re: Shocks: Necessity or luxury?

Hey 29er,
It's a matter of STABILITY! Without shocks your beautiful car will most likely end up , in an emergency, as Bill suggests. When you try to turn quickly and your car FEELS like you are going to loose it; or when you have to stand on the brake and there is no control or when you hit a pot hole or railroad track and your car continues to oscilate up/down ! Well that's your choice,eh !
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Old 04-15-2013, 02:25 AM   #13
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Default Re: Shocks: Necessity or luxury?

Mine seems fine without shocks but the springs are dry enough to be their own shocks!
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Old 04-15-2013, 06:02 AM   #14
1931 flamingo
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Default Re: Shocks: Necessity or luxury?

I followed a 4 dr sedan many years ago, old guy and his wife, in town. His springs and shackles must have been well lubed as this car bounced up and down at least 9 inches as far as I followed him, and in a corner it leaned waaay over. You couldn't have paid me to ride in it. Yes, you should have shocks. JMO
On another note, it's interesting how many cars are for sale that do NOT have shocks. When I purchased mine I'd looked at about 2 dozen and only 3-4 had them.
The one I bought did and they were a deciding factor.
Paul in CT
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Old 04-15-2013, 06:46 AM   #15
Patrick L.
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Default Re: Shocks: Necessity or luxury?

I'd recommend new shocks built by Bill Stipe, which are the $1000 set from Brattons, or a GOOD set of rebuilts. I'd also recommend staying as far away as possible from the new 'oil-less' units. I have them all, rebuilts from Apple Hydraulics are good but expensive. The new ones from Stipe are the best.
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Old 04-15-2013, 06:54 AM   #16
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Default Re: Shocks: Necessity or luxury?

Became a shock 'beliver' yesterday - my truck has "modern" shocks (got the kit for free from someone that found a set of originals) but the brackets for the front weren't so good.
I am making my own, and while waiting for the paint to dry, I went on a 20 mile errand, and could not believe how mushy the front end was, the back ones were still connected, I can only imagine what kind of "buggy spring boat" this thing would be with none at all.
Put shocks on it - any kind - just put something on it
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Old 04-15-2013, 07:47 AM   #17
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Default Re: Shocks: Necessity or luxury?

The fact is if you have a tight car with good springs then the car will not be safe to drive over 25 MPH without shocks. The car will start horrible bouncing and create a scary few moments as you get the speed down.

I do know worn out springs that are not properly lubricated between the leaves do not bounce much. Just look at the cars that owners will not drive over 45 MPH with no shocks. The front spring is down, you can not see it behind the front splash apron. They sometimes have the orange rust dust between the leaves.

On the other hand, once the shocks are on the car handles nice even up over 60 MPH. The Model A is a pretty well behaved car.
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Old 04-15-2013, 08:53 AM   #18
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Default Re: Shocks: Necessity or luxury?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BILL WILLIAMSON View Post
If that's not the answer you wanted, just wait for someone who says, "Oh! they drive beautifully WITHOUT shocks"!-----And I'll be praying for BOTH of you. Bill W.
Bill you described a Buddy of mine, he never wanted to hear the correct answer, he always asked everyone until someone agreed with him and he went with it, the best exaple was when he was building a spec house, code for the lolly columns was every 9'. He put one in the center, i believe he paid off the building inspector. He lived there about a year and a half and removed the one in the center. I refuse to go into his house.
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Old 04-15-2013, 09:19 AM   #19
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Default Re: Shocks: Necessity or luxury?

Well I have to say my car rides just fine without them. I have a new front spring.
But being a roadster it is probably a little lighter.
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Old 04-15-2013, 09:28 AM   #20
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Default Re: Shocks: Necessity or luxury?

Look, On the fronts , you're on your own, but the rear, I made my own brackets to go on the brake backing plates from angle iron. (Probably a lot more substantial than anything from Detroit) For my Town Sedan. These are copies of the shock brackets on my coupe.
I couldn't identify exactly what the old numbers were (Too much Rust) but we matched up a shock that worked from catalogs. What we came up with was the Monroe Gas-matic #59017. I think that is the correct number, it's the largest font of the four numbers on the shock box tab. cost? around $80. Feel free to ask me whatever.
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