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AMP MT Aftermarket shocks

Fred Flintstone

Active Member
Messages
27
Location
Bedrock
I know this subject has been discussed before, but I just wanted to put in my 2c worth with my experience with some aftermarket shock absorbers.

When I got my AMP, for whatever reason, I assumed that I should upgrade the stock shocks. One reason for this may have been the availability of cheap aftermarket shocks online. Also, the stock shocks are plastic and the aftermarket ones are cool looking blue (or any other color) anodised aluminium. So they must be better, right?
So I ordered a set of shocks with lengths similar to the stock shocks. In the meantime, I was driving the AMP on the stock shocks and it went fine, but in the back of my mind I'm thinking "Imagine how much better this will be with the fancy anodised aluminium shocks".
They turned up and they looked ok. Except they needed to be filled with oil. Luckily, I had some 10wt shock oil that I used for my mountain bike, so I filled each one. First thing I noticed was that the oil didn't seem to make any difference to the damping or rebound feel of the the shocks. They don't have the air bladder that the stock shocks have, so you have to kind of judge the oil level. If you fill them full, they are locked up solid, and you give it a little air gap and they may as well have no oil in them at all. I convinced myself that the reason for this was that the oil was too thin so I ordered some 40wt oil and filled them again. Same result - no difference to the 10wt. I fitted them anyway and went driving.

These things turned out to be junk. The handling was rubbish. And as soon as I hit some bumps, the shocks would fall apart. The lower spring retainer disc which is held in place by spring tension would somehow lift up and fall off, meaning the spring would drop and bear on the lower swing arm. Out of the 4 shocks I bought, I've only got 1 that is still in one piece due to the spring retainers being lost. Also, the lower eyes needed to be loctited on, even though they were tight when they turned up.
These shocks cost about US$13 for the set, so maybe that should have been a warning sign.
The pic below shows the stock shock next to the aftermarket one. The aftermarket one is about 3-4 mm longer than the stock one.

Anyway, I've gone back to the stock shocks and am happy with them. They don't fall apart every time I take the car out. I'm only bashing, not racing, so after all that, the stock shocks are probably as good as I'll ever need.
 

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KyleRC

Well-Known Member
Messages
290
I was just going to order those exact shocks for my Trx4 crawler thanks for the heads up I’ll look into some other ones.
 

zderekv

Well-Known Member
Messages
117
Been there, done that, and from my 20 years of experience in this hobby I can honestly say that properly tuned stock plastic bodied shocks are plenty good enough for 95% of our driving. 2 exceptions: serious racing and big air. These trucks are light enough that coming down from 5-6 feet in the air is nothing. I consider big air seeing your truck 12,15 ... 20 feet in the air while skate park or BMX track bashing, or basically any landing that blows the plastic shock caps off. Even then cheap shocks will perform as such. The reason you see these cheap shocks online is because no one would buy them if they saw them in person. You get what you pay for.
 

XtrmTJ

Active Member
Messages
37
Location
PNW
Personally I use stock shocks with aluminum caps so as the caps don't blow off on hard/high hits. You can experiment with different oil weights, different valving (2 holes, 3 holes or even 4 hole valves), different spring rates. Shocks can be adjusted to your specific rc, track, driving style, ect, ect, ect. Enjoy ! 🤟
 

i_r_beej

Well-Known Member
Messages
991
I used the stock ECX shocks on my AMP/Circuit, Traxxas "Big Bore," and finally the ECX aluminum bodied "upgrade" shocks. I found the plastic ECX damper bodies actually had an "hourglass" shape (and it was inconsistent across all four units) which at the top and bottom of the stroke allowed oil to bypass the piston holes and run around the edges of the piston. This creates uneven damping. The Traxxas units just didn't perform well on the ECX car. The ECX aluminum upgrade shocks were actually quite good with the damper bodies internal piston bore having a good, close tolerance. I futher upgraded the shocks by installing grooved o-rings (AKA "X-rings") and they dramatically reduced the amount of oil leaking onto the piston shaft without increasing friction (noticeably). I also run Traxxas spring cups and Losi springs. It's been a good combination!
 
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