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Old 08-20-2009, 03:56 PM   #1
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Default SC10 Shocks: How To Build

Everyone knows that Associated shocks have a reputation of leaking......right?

I've noticed people complaining about how their AE shocks leak, and that Kyosho, Tamiya, and Losi shocks are easier to build and work better.

In reality, AE shocks are very good, but they must be built correctly to do so and that's easier said than done.

So I decided I would try and put together a little write up that will help you build AE shocks that work extremely well and don't leak.

First thing is a list of parts I used to build my "Ultimate Associated Shocks".

Front Threaded Shock Body 1.02”............................................. 7414
Rear Threaded Shock Body 1.39”............................................. .7412
Front "Unobtainium Shock Shaft............................................. ..6417
Rear "Unobtainium Shock Shaft............................................. ...6416
AE VCS2 Shock Upgrade Kit............................................... ....31123
AE Green Slime............................................. ........................1105
AE Synthetic Shock Oil............................................... ...........0000
GS Racing 1/10 Silicone Shock Rebuild.......................Kit GSC-SH-10FP

Here is a shot of everything you will need to assemble a complete shock.

Click the image to open in full size.

After laying out all of your parts, be sure to pay attention to all of the plastic parts on the trees. Be sure you pull the pistons away from the parts tree so that you end up with less flashing. Then use a new X-acto blade to carefully remove any flashing left on the pistons.

So far nothing has been to strenuous.

Now let's assume your using the standard Associated shock rebuild kit(#6440)to rebuilt your shocks, this is were we run into our first issue.

If you measure the length of the O-ring/spacer stack, and then the depth of the recess in the shock bodies were they sit, they don't match. There's not enough room.

IMO, this is due to the fact that Associated molds for the O-rings and spacers date to the mid 80's which pre-date their use of the hard anodized coating now used. The Hard anodising is thicker and the old spacers were not corrected to allow for the differences in the thickness the hard anodizing adds.

The O-rings are compacted into the recess in the body, if the O-rings swell up even slightly(O-rings start to swell when they come in contact with silicone shock oil), there is disproportionate amount of friction and the shock doesn't operate smoothly.

Some may have noticed when you disassemble the shock for a rebuild, the snap rings are bowed. This is due to the O-rings not having sufficient room and they have been pushing against the snap rings.

This is were the VSC2 shock rebuild kit comes into play.

Once you have opened the VSC2 rebuild kit, you'll notice that there are black spacers provided for the O-ring stack instead of the while spacers in the traditional rebuild kit. If you compare the two, you will notice that the black spacers are a bit shorter in comparison the the white spacer and this eliminates the issue of not have enough room for the O-ring stack in the recess of the shock body.

Hopefully the difference can be seen in the pic.

Click the image to open in full size.

The difference is roughly the thickness of one of the thin nylon spacers.

You'll also notice the pink O-rings on the stack w/ the black spacers. These O rings are from GS Racing. I feel that the silicone GS uses is superior to AE O-rings and they feature a slightly smaller inner diameter than the Associated O-rings which provides a better sweep.

I tried to get a good picture of the size difference, unfortunately my camera and my photography skills are lacking.

Click the image to open in full size.

Now that we have reached this point, it's time to insert the O-ring stack into the shock body.

IMO, It is critical to coat the O-ring stack w/ Associated Green Slime, The Slime reduces stiction (the tendency of the O-rings to stick to the shock shaft), promotes smoother action and helps reduce shock-shaft scuffing. A healthy coat on the seals is sufficient.

Make sure you have prepped the shock body w/ motor cleaner (make sure the motor cleaner has completely evaporated before inserting the O-ring stack into the shock body as motor cleaner will cause the O-rings to swell and cause a failure) and that it is clean and free of any debris.

Here is a shot of the prepped shock body and shaft.

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

Now your are ready to insert the O-ring stack into the shock body, this step is critical!

Slide the shock tool (with the entire O-ring assembly on it) into the shock body, and place them upside-down on your workbench. Push down on the shock body until the clip snaps into place. If the O-ring stack has seated completely and you have heard the snap, the top of the shock tool should be sticking out from the shock body 2-3mm. If you don't hear the snap and your shock tool is not sticking out as described, disassemble the O-ring stack and try again.

At this point we can advance to the insertion of the shock shaft.

I like to add a few drops of shock oil into the O-ring stack. If you were to simply load the O-rings into the shock body you will trap air in the spaces between the O-rings and the shock body. Also be sure to lube the threaded area of the shock shaft before inserting it into the shock body. This helps to prevent the threads from damaging the O-rings as they pass through the O-ring stack.

Once this step is complete, we can move to filling the shocks w/ oil.

Associated shocks are top-filled and don't use bladders. The fluid in a shock cannot be compressed; that's why all fluid-damped shocks need some type of mechanism to compensate for the volume of fluid that is displaced(volume compensation).

The simplest way to compensate for the excess fluid is to mix air with it. Since air can be compressed, the tiny air bubbles in the fluid simply shrink as they are squeezed by the action of the shaft and piston. This is the type of system used by Associated, and it's known as an emulsion design because the air is mixed (emulsified) with the shock fluid.

I wanted to try a non-emulsion shock. Again the Associated VCS2 rebuild kit and the GS rebuild kit comes into play.

From the VCS2 kit, you'll need the composite shock cap and aluminum threaded retaining ring, plus the small blue foam insert. From the GR racing rebuild kit, you'll need one of the pink bladders. Insert the blue foam ring into the recess of the composite cap, slide the cap into the aluminum threaded ring and then carefully insert and seat the pink bladder.(Note: the VCS2 kit comes w/ it's own bladders, you choose to use them instead of the GS racing bladders if you please.) It should look like this when your done.

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

As you start to fill the shock w/ oil( I'm using 35wt up front, 40wt in rear), tilt the shock as you fill it. As you pour the fluid into the shock, let it drizzle down the side of the shock body so you add as little air as possible. If you blast the oil into the shock body to quickly, you'll be adding bubbles to the oil and we want to avoid that as much as possible. Let the fluid flow down the side of the shock body to avoid this issue.

Don't fill the shock completely until you've released the air from under the piston. Fill the shock about halfway, then slowly cycle the piston up and down a few times to release any air trapped under the piston. Filling the shock just halfway, there is less fluid for the air bubbles that were trapped under the piston to travel through, This will decrease the time needed to finish filling the shock. After the last of the bubble have broke the surface, you can finish filling the shock w/ oil.

Fill it until there is a dome of shock oil at the top of the shock body. Next, fill the VCS2 cap assemble w/ a little fluid and quickly assemble the shock in an effort to eliminate as much air as possible. Screw the cap on a few turns from being tight, then slowly compress the shock to bleed out extra fluid and air, then tighten the cap when the shock is fully compressed.

At this point we can attach the shock eyelet to the shock shaft.

Be carefull when you grab the shock shaft as not to damage it which in turn can damage the O-rings and cause a failure of the O-rings. I hold the shaft by its threads with the wire cutters that have been covered in heat shrink. This works really well, it allows you to thread the eyelet onto the shock shaft up to the cutters, this method leaves one thread exposed, but I don't worry about it as the spring perch covers it.

Now that the eyelet is installed, grab the spring of your choice( I chose the stock SC10 Green spring for the rear and Associated Golds up front) slide it over the shock body, slide on your spring perch and you are done!

Here is a shot of them installed, ran them last weekend and they are extremely smooth and best of all NO LEAKS!

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.



Hope this is helpful!

Last edited by Dezfan; 11-12-2009 at 03:57 PM.
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Old 08-20-2009, 05:57 PM   #2
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Nice job Dezzy.
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Old 08-20-2009, 07:59 PM   #3
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Ive been using the GS o-rings for a few months now and when I assemble the shocks I do not use any green slime . Since this change my shocks can go two months of hard abuse without leaking . The black plastic spacer is the correct one and should be included in all shock rebuild kits.

Good job on the write up. Here's another link on how to build shocks correctly, it involves alot of prep but it is suppose to make the shocks leak free.

http://users.telenet.be/elvo/12/8/1.html
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Old 08-20-2009, 08:12 PM   #4
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I think it was your post that lead me to look into the GS Racing O-rings to begin w/. After I received them, I compared them to the OE O-rings and they just seem to be a much higher quality O-ring.

Good to hear that even w/o Slime the GS O-rings are still holding up well.

W/ just a few mods, the Associated shocks are as smooth as anything I've seen and to this point have been leak free.
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Old 08-21-2009, 06:46 AM   #5
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Thanks very much for taking the time to put that together

Now do one on the Ball diff/ gear diff swap
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Old 08-21-2009, 10:05 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beadlock View Post
Thanks very much for taking the time to put that together

Now do one on the Ball diff/ gear diff swap
I've been looking into that.
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Old 08-21-2009, 10:49 AM   #7
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Nice write up. Ever since I rebuilt my shock they havent leaked (knock on wood) Im going to have to try those o rings next time I rebuild
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Old 08-22-2009, 08:18 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beadlock View Post
Thanks very much for taking the time to put that together

Now do one on the Ball diff/ gear diff swap

Its not an in depth How to, but heres some comparison pictures.

T4/B4 Trans Swap
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Old 09-17-2009, 10:13 AM   #9
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Thanks Dez, I'll have to try your tips here.
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Old 09-28-2009, 08:54 AM   #10
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i just did a rebuild on both of my SC10 using a slightly different method because i couldn't find the VCS kit or GS rings locally. i deleted the thick washer between the o-rings and replaced it with another o-ring (AE is all i could find) and the results are phenomenal! i've never had such smooth and clean action (from rc shocks anyway! LOL!) i also painted a nice layer of green slime around the whole cartridge prior to snapping it in the shock.

after a race night at MHOR i had ZERO leakage.
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Old 09-28-2009, 12:59 PM   #11
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I just did a rebuild as well. I used the described VCS kit and GS rings. The only trouble I has was that the black spacers seemed to be just a tiny bit too big and would not seat all the way down in the shock. Also the new shock caps worked great on the rear shocks, but would not thread all the way down on the front shock bodies. So I used the stock AE white spacers and on the front shocks I used the AE aluminum shock caps with the bladders from the kit to maintain the non-emulsion shock setup. I also added an o-ring under the piston on the inside and another one on the shaft outside to cushion extreme shock movement. I also am using the purple set of RPM dampening valves.

The shocks are butter smoothThanks for the tips.
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Old 10-06-2009, 08:20 PM   #12
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where do you get GS Racing 1/10 Silicone Shock Rebuild.......................Kit GSC-SH-10FP ? ive looked on tower hobbies and amain and dont see any. im getting tired of my sc10 shocks leaking after ive rebuilt them twice already :(
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Old 10-06-2009, 08:34 PM   #13
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I think they have been discontinued. I ordered a set recently only to have the vendor to refund my money a few days later stating that they were not available.

I ordered some HPI O-rings Part # HPI75075.

I'll report on their performance shortly.
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Old 10-07-2009, 06:28 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by corrsc10 View Post
where do you get GS Racing 1/10 Silicone Shock Rebuild.......................Kit GSC-SH-10FP ? :(
I found mine on Ebay.... just checked and they are still some listed.
http://cgi.ebay.com/GS-Racing-1-10-s...item3347519cde
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Old 10-09-2009, 07:52 AM   #15
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I did this conversion and all my shocks now leak out the cap. Did you use the o-ring that goes between the stock cap and shock body on the stock sc10 shocks, I didn't. Also I used both pieces of the foam in the shock caps, the little one and the one that goes in the bladder. Did you use both or just the small one.
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Old 10-09-2009, 10:58 AM   #16
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I did not use the o-ring at the base of the cap and I only used the small foam insert that sits in the plastic portion of the cap.
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Old 10-28-2009, 03:12 PM   #17
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Can anyone say for sure if the gs o-rings are still available or not? If not what are any other part #'s that have been tried tested and true.
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Old 10-28-2009, 04:40 PM   #18
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I think the GS kit is now out of production.

I'll looking for an alternative.
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Old 11-01-2009, 03:59 PM   #19
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I got mine only a week or so ago from Bars Toys
GS Racing 1/10 shock rebuild kit, fl red NIP #GSCSH10FR
they also have it in red, yellow or pink

Cheers
BAD808

Last edited by BAD808; 11-01-2009 at 04:25 PM.
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Old 11-29-2009, 08:30 AM   #20
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Anybody come up with a better replacement for the AE orings yet? Seems the GS one's are a thing of the past now...
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