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Lever action shocks

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by 28TUDOR, Mar 5, 2013.

  1. 28TUDOR
    Joined: Jan 25, 2007
    Posts: 419

    28TUDOR
    Member

    Has anyone rebuilt lever action shocks? I got a 50 Olds that's due for a set and I can't see paying $200 per shock for a rebuild. What's involved in rebuilding them? I hate to tear into them not knowing anything about them.
    28
     
  2. Inked Monkey
    Joined: Apr 19, 2011
    Posts: 1,382

    Inked Monkey
    Member

    Have you tried filling them up with oil? It's messy and takes awhile but I brought some back from the dead. Just used some hydraulic jack oil from the parts store.
     
  3. 28TUDOR
    Joined: Jan 25, 2007
    Posts: 419

    28TUDOR
    Member

    I haven't tried anything with them yet. Do they have a fill plug or do you pull one end off or what?
     
  4. Inked Monkey
    Joined: Apr 19, 2011
    Posts: 1,382

    Inked Monkey
    Member

    Mine had a little plug at the top. I just kept adding the oil while moving the arm on the shock.
     
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  5. Fill them with motorcycle fork oil. It is formulated to be a shock oil and comes in different weights.

    ~Alden
     
  6. Rusty O'Toole
    Joined: Sep 17, 2006
    Posts: 8,753

    Rusty O'Toole
    Member

    They should last the life of the car. Worst thing that happens, the seals wear out and all the oil leaks out. But as long as you fill them up they work.

    See if there is a fill plug at the top. Clean off the dirt, you don't want any falling inside. Fill with jack oil. Check again after driving for a few days. Some seepage around the shafts is normal but if the oil is pouring out it needs new seals. One way to slow this down is to clean off the dirt and grease, and wind string tight around the shaft. This will not fix the leak but slow it down.

    If there is a drain plug at the bottom you can drain out the old oil and put in fresh.

    For fine tuning you can use motorcycle fork oil which comes in different grades.

    The proper thing to use is called Knee Action Fluid or shock absorber oil but parts stores have not carried it since the sixties and antique oil specialists charge $17 for a small bottle. So everyone uses hydraulic jack oil.

    Most times filling with oil will make them good as new.
     
  7. supervert
    Joined: Mar 8, 2009
    Posts: 433

    supervert
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  8. 28TUDOR
    Joined: Jan 25, 2007
    Posts: 419

    28TUDOR
    Member

    Cool, thanks for the info. I'm sure that they are low, you'll get sea sick riding down the road. I'll check them and fill them up.
    28
     
  9. Beau
    Joined: Jul 2, 2009
    Posts: 1,884

    Beau
    Member

    I was just going to ask about this. I picked up a set from a fella but wasn't sure how to test them off the car to see if they work.

    I work at a bicycle shop and we have many different weight fork oils for bicycles (pretty much the same as motorcycles). I'll have to give this a shot.
     
  10. CutawayAl
    Joined: Aug 3, 2009
    Posts: 2,144

    CutawayAl
    Member
    from MI

    Don't use synthetic fork/shock oil.
     
  11. Old thread, but still good info! I recently got a '41 Buick and those rear shocks - :eek: they bounce up & down like a couple of newlyweds!

    I've been doing some research and the advice ranges from jack oil, hydraulic/trans oil, and even STP. I haven't check to see if they have any fluid in them, that will be first step. I'm hoping they're just low on fluid, since the cost to replace 'em with rebuilts looks like $175-$200 for each corner. Sounds kind of steep to me so I'm gonna try & retain what I've got first.

    Does anyone know of a quick and easy conversion to tube shocks for these old beasts?
     

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