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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
[Updated with combined answers]

Dear Brainstrust,

Firstly, I am in awe of all the wonderful information that has been provided here in this forum. I have thoroughly enjoyed reading through the 14T debate and the one-time-worry about the hot shock. I have also recently read through @LowRyter’s thread on changing from the Sachs to the Ohlins shock.

After much debate, mostly between my rational self that has to maintain a working relationship and the totally irrational self that wants to throw every last cent I have into the blackhole provided to us by Ducati, I have finally sourced a low km second hand take-off Ohlins shock and I was keen to have a go at installing it myself (I blame the likes of Lego and Mechano for that).

I am handy with the tools, but have no experience in this department. So, I am wondering if any of you good folk have any hints, tips or tricks for doing a replacement of the shock?

1. Stopping the bike from collapsing once the bolt is sufficiently loosened / removed.

Answer
: If no bike lifter, then suspending the frame with straps from anything that can hold item, even and perhaps best of all a ladder. See the following examples…

Rear Spring Removal/Install

Rear Spring Removal/Install

No Front Wheel Stand, Thoughts?


2. Are there any specialist tools that would assist in removing the bolts?

Answer
: Unclear apart from a big enough torque wrench. See

3. I assume a torque drive will be required to refit the bolts, and where would I be able to find the torque setting for this?

Answer
: 42NM: Thanks to @Grossi.BP Torque Values - posts with tables

4. Is a heat-treating thread product required?

Answer
: Grease B - SHELL Retinax HDX2 (Originally) now SHELL Gadus S2 V220AD 2 - a Molybdenum Disulphide grease: Thanks to @Grossi.BP and @amoslws Ducati lubricant equivalents

And generally…

Tips for Fork/Shock removal

Thanks,
Rodders_SS937 (aka Rodney)

PS Here is a recent pic of the gorgeous grey lady, Helena, on our latest outing, just prior to our 2nd anniversary. :)
 

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Dear Brainstrust,

Firstly, I am in awe of all the wonderful information that has been provided here in this forum. I have thoroughly enjoyed reading through the 14T debate and the one-time-worry about the hot shock. I have also recently read through @LowRyter’s thread on changing from the Sachs to the Ohlins shock.

After much debate, mostly between my rational self that has to maintain a working relationship and the totally irrational self that wants to throw every last cent I have into the blackhole provided to us by Ducati, I have finally sourced a low km second hand take-off Ohlins shock and I was keen to have a go at installing it myself (I blame the likes of Lego and Mechano for that).

I am handy with the tools, but have no experience in this department. So, I am wondering if any of you good folk have any hints, tips or tricks for doing a replacement of the shock? My immediate thoughts about the possible issues with this are:
1. Stopping the bike from collapsing once the bolt is sufficiently loosened / removed.
2. Are there any specialist tools that would assist in removing the bolts?
3. I assume a torque drive will be required to refit the bolts, and where would I be able to find the torque setting for this.
4. Is a heat-treating thread product required?

Thanks in advance.
Rodders_SS937 (aka Rodney)

PS Here is a recent pic of the gorgeous grey lady, Helena, on our latest outing, just prior to our 2nd anniversary. :)
I'd be very grateful to see how that turns out. The only nik that I have with ride on my standard bike is the shock is slightly stiff. I have to turn the rebound to 0. That might have been known by the factory since the owner's manual also recommends a low setting from the factory.

Personally, I'm pretty satisfied with the ride & suspension and gave up trying to upgrade it. I know I'm not up to the task to dial in all the adjustability for full on Ohlins but a rear shock should be in the ballpark for me.

So far as resources, we have a torque setting guide on the site, so do a search. I've also downloaded it to my phone. It's not easy to scroll through the list as font groupings seem to change as I scroll.

Good luck, keep us informed.
 

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I use a front stand and a floor jack with a piece of wood lifting from the oil sump when I take out the rear shock. When I had the shock out from an extended period of time, I put jack stands under the foot pegs with some rags in between. You will need an allen socket that fits through the subframe bolt you remove. So an extended allen socket.

You will also want some way to lift/lower the rear tire so that you're at equillibrium with the rear shock when you remove that bolt. No pressure on the shock or the bolt will be difficult to remove/reinstall. Piece of wood you can shove under the wheel, etc.

The torque setting for the subframe bolt is pretty high, over 100nm, I believe. It's in the torque chart that's floating around this site.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I use a front stand and a floor jack with a piece of wood lifting from the oil sump when I take out the rear shock. When I had the shock out from an extended period of time, I put jack stands under the foot pegs with some rags in between. You will need an allen socket that fits through the subframe bolt you remove. So an extended allen socket.

You will also want some way to lift/lower the rear tire so that you're at equillibrium with the rear shock when you remove that bolt. No pressure on the shock or the bolt will be difficult to remove/reinstall. Piece of wood you can shove under the wheel, etc.

The torque setting for the subframe bolt is pretty high, over 100nm, I believe. It's in the torque chart that's floating around this site.
Thanks, @Lopez0101, excellent suggestions. And thank you for sharing your experience!
 

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I've done the swap on my '20 SS right after I bought the bike 2 years ago.

I use an ABBA Stand to lift the bike up at the swingarm pivot.
I also use a Pitbull Rear SSS stand to lift the rear wheel (really really helpful when it is time to line up the bolt with the eyelet on the shock).

Pretty easy, all things considered
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
This is the install of the Ohlins shock. It is a beautiful thing, and the most technically challenging or at least risky mod/upgrade to Helena, the gorgeous grey lady, today. I had my heart in my mouth a couple of times but really pleased with the result—i.e. I got it back together without any bits left over! (All the young-engineers who pulled apart the family toaster will know exactly what I mean.)

Although it probably cost more time and effort than if I had the installation work done by a pro, I think I just wanted to do it myself to show my dear departed father that his boy isn’t a total incompetent when it comes to mechanical things.

I've not had that chance to do much more with it since (last weekend). I am hoping to do some setup tomorrow.

Just from some general observations and some theoretical thoughts, here is why I think the Ohlins is going to be quite an improvement. Now, most of my theory comes from the Dave Moss Tuning videos, a subscription that is worth the price several times over.

Firstly, on the standard Sachs shock, I had already screwed out the pre-load just about as far as it goes, and it still wasn't quite enough to dope with my weight (110+ kg at the time I set it). However, if you look at the Ohlins shock there is so much more thread available to make adjustments with.

Secondly, the standard Sachs shock is very quick on the rebound. This can have many effects, not least of which can be a sharpness on bumps and a loading up of front forks, which in turn alters the dynamics at the front end potentially putting greater strain the hands during the turn. However, the Ohlins shock offers much more adjustment in both rebound and compression.

Anyway, here are the photographs of the installation. It was relatively straight-forward, however...
  • It is vital to remove the subframe bolt to be able to remove the suspension bolt,
  • It is advisable to remove the lower end bolt first,
  • It is really useful to have something, like the rear wheel paddock stand, to adjust the height of the wheel/swing-arm so that it makes the alignment of the holes easier without putting strain on the bolt when re-tightening.
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I managed to do some set-up yesterday with the full Ohlins. Now, unfortunately I changed more than just the set-up on the shock, because I have put on at least 5-7 kgs and have added 5000 plus kms since I first set-up Helena's suspension, however I think the change made a significant difference.

The two areas of performance that I noticed this on was in the general response to bumps and the way it handled low speed hairpin corners. On the bumps, running in a straight line, it felt gentler or, perhaps to use @LowRyter 's term, less harsh. On a 180 degree hairpin, with an advisory speed of 15kph, I experienced greater confidence of riding through it at a constant speed and angle, whereas previously, I had found myself having to adjust countersteering or throttle.

I will freely admit that I am no test rider, I cannot claim to super sensitive to all the bike's dynamics, and that I can't rule out a degree of wishful thinking given that I have just invested both time and money on the modification. But on its first outing it seems to have made an improvement.

I need to go back and tweak the set-up some more, as well as rewatch the Dave Moss Training video again, because he packs a lot into those tuning sessions, and sometimes it doesn't make sense until after you have had a go at it.
 
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