Honda Rebel 300, 500, & 1100 Forum banner
1 - 10 of 10 Posts

· Registered
2021 Honda CMX 1100 DCT
Joined
·
22 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Being old and creaky, I really suffer riding my 1100 over sharp edged bumps – especially at the back end of the bike. So I set out to find a decent, affordable set of shock absorbers that would fit my bike and solve my problem. Searching on eBay, I stumbled on Progressive Suspension shocks for 2015-2020 Harley Davidson XG500/XG750, Street models. I found both Progressive series 412 and 430 shocks called "new, open box" at substantial discounts (up to 70% from some sellers on the 430’s). The discounted ones are probably new old stock (NOS) and are being cleared out by several eBay sellers (The Harley Street has been discontinued.) Other sellers have the shocks listed at what I assume is full MSRP. In the past, I have used Progressive Suspension 412 shocks on a Yamaha SR500 and they made a huge difference, so I investigated further.

The obvious first question is, how will they fit on a Rebel 1100? And, second how do they work? The short answer is; they fit perfectly and they work perfectly.

The long answer is the 1100 Rebel and 500/750 Street bikes match up very closely on the important suspension related specs:
Weight Shock Angle Shock length Wheel travel

Honda 509 lbs. 35* 12 ½” 3.7”

Harley 489 lbs. ~33* 12-13" ? 3.5”

I had to estimate shock angle using a protractor for the Street using photos of one and I couldn’t find the OEM shock length of a Street but since we’re talking aftermarket shocks with different lengths, it doesn’t matter. There are other minor differences (shock bolts on the Honda are larger (14mm) than on the Harley (12.5mm) but none are really deal breakers IMO. And, there is one possibly important remark posted with the listing for both 412 and 430 shocks: “Notes: Heavy Duty Applications are recommended for bikes operating at or near the manufacturers maximum load rating over 50% of the time.” I don’t know the maximum load rating for the HD Street, so I ignored that statement. But it does suggest these shocks will work well when carrying passengers and for heavier riders.

Back to my “short” answer. It is based on having selected 13” (eye to eye) Series 430 shocks which, even though they are ½ “ longer than factory Rebel shocks, they did not change seat height on my bike. The went on easily (I will need to fit a bushing on the mounts later) and did not touch or block any part of the bike. The length of Progressive shocks for HD Street models offered on eBay (right now) ranges from 12” to 13 ½”, so depending on your choice and your objective (from slamming your bike to increasing ground clearance ) your results could be different than mine.

As for how they work; once I had the Progressive shocks installed on my 1100, I took it out for a half hour tour on the paved road with the most and worst square edged cracks in my development, then into adjacent Federal (BLM) range lands and up, then down 2 miles of the gnarliest dirt road I could navigate on a street bike – aiming at every (and there were plenty) hole, bump, rock, ridge and any other miserable riding surface I could find. I’m not saying I didn’t feel those obstacles, but instead of a jarring hit, there was a noticeable but smooth bump sensation. When I got back to pavement, my hands were aching from fighting the bars over bad road (still are) but my butt was unaffected.

I have no idea how long these NOS shocks will be available or where else they can be be found. And, I am not an eBay seller and have no relationship with anyone who is selling them (except I did buy a pair from one eBay seller).

Posted below are photos taken tonight of the shocks on my 1100. The blue tape is just there to align the pre-load adjuster with the shock body so I can keep track of the number of revolutions adjusters on each side is turned. I'll take the tape off when I'm satisfied with the set up. Incidentally, Progressive claims the adjusters can be turned by hand. So far, that is not the case for me. I had to use strap wrenches to turn them, which at least is easy and doesn't damage the chrome.


Tire Automotive tire Motor vehicle Wheel Vehicle


Tire Wheel Fuel tank Automotive fuel system Vehicle


Tire Wheel Fuel tank Automotive fuel system Vehicle
 

· Registered
Joined
·
1,309 Posts
Good write up and pictures. Seems like eBay has them all over the map for prices but down to 200 a pair might be worth the improvement I would like to get on the sometimes rough paved mountain roads around here I like to ride. Having the 13 inch shock with a little added ground clearance would be a plus in the corners. Seems the chrome/polished are less money than the black ones but a rattle can will take care of that.

Thanks for the info. When you get more miles on them maybe come back and to an update post.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jon1100

· Registered
2021 Honda CMX 1100 DCT
Joined
·
22 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Good write up and pictures. Seems like eBay has them all over the map for prices but down to 200 a pair might be worth the improvement I would like to get on the sometimes rough paved mountain roads around here I like to ride. Having the 13 inch shock with a little added ground clearance would be a plus in the corners. Seems the chrome/polished are less money than the black ones but a rattle can will take care of that.

Thanks for the info. When you get more miles on them maybe come back and to an update post.
I'm over in Carson City - and sometimes get as far NW as Quincy-LaPorte CA, so we are riding the same roads (in better weather) and yeah, those roads can get pretty bad. After the hammering I gave them on my test ride, I am confident the shocks will continue giving good service but will do updates as I rack up more miles.
There can be a downside to suspension upgrades; my experience has been that once you get one end of a bike "tamed" your attention shifts and you begin to notice problems with the other end. The Showa forks on the 1100 have been satisfactory, so I'm hoping that doesn't happen this time (front end work is more difficult and costly than swapping out shocks).
 

· Registered
Joined
·
286 Posts
Being old and creaky, I really suffer riding my 1100 over sharp edged bumps – especially at the back end of the bike. So I set out to find a decent, affordable set of shock absorbers that would fit my bike and solve my problem. Searching on eBay, I stumbled on Progressive Suspension shocks for 2015-2020 Harley Davidson XG500/XG750, Street models. I found both Progressive series 412 and 430 shocks called "new, open box" at substantial discounts (up to 70% from some sellers on the 430’s). The discounted ones are probably new old stock (NOS) and are being cleared out by several eBay sellers (The Harley Street has been discontinued.) Other sellers have the shocks listed at what I assume is full MSRP. In the past, I have used Progressive Suspension 412 shocks on a Yamaha SR500 and they made a huge difference, so I investigated further.

The obvious first question is, how will they fit on a Rebel 1100? And, second how do they work? The short answer is; they fit perfectly and they work perfectly.

The long answer is the 1100 Rebel and 500/750 Street bikes match up very closely on the important suspension related specs:
Weight Shock Angle Shock length Wheel travel

Honda 509 lbs. 35* 12 ½” 3.7”

Harley 489 lbs. ~33* 12-13" ? 3.5”

I had to estimate shock angle using a protractor for the Street using photos of one and I couldn’t find the OEM shock length of a Street but since we’re talking aftermarket shocks with different lengths, it doesn’t matter. There are other minor differences (shock bolts on the Honda are larger (14mm) than on the Harley (12.5mm) but none are really deal breakers IMO. And, there is one possibly important remark posted with the listing for both 412 and 430 shocks: “Notes: Heavy Duty Applications are recommended for bikes operating at or near the manufacturers maximum load rating over 50% of the time.” I don’t know the maximum load rating for the HD Street, so I ignored that statement. But it does suggest these shocks will work well when carrying passengers and for heavier riders.

Back to my “short” answer. It is based on having selected 13” (eye to eye) Series 430 shocks which, even though they are ½ “ longer than factory Rebel shocks, they did not change seat height on my bike. The went on easily (I will need to fit a bushing on the mounts later) and did not touch or block any part of the bike. The length of Progressive shocks for HD Street models offered on eBay (right now) ranges from 12” to 13 ½”, so depending on your choice and your objective (from slamming your bike to increasing ground clearance ) your results could be different than mine.

As for how they work; once I had the Progressive shocks installed on my 1100, I took it out for a half hour tour on the paved road with the most and worst square edged cracks in my development, then into adjacent Federal (BLM) range lands and up, then down 2 miles of the gnarliest dirt road I could navigate on a street bike – aiming at every (and there were plenty) hole, bump, rock, ridge and any other miserable riding surface I could find. I’m not saying I didn’t feel those obstacles, but instead of a jarring hit, there was a noticeable but smooth bump sensation. When I got back to pavement, my hands were aching from fighting the bars over bad road (still are) but my butt was unaffected.

I have no idea how long these NOS shocks will be available or where else they can be be found. And, I am not an eBay seller and have no relationship with anyone who is selling them (except I did buy a pair from one eBay seller).

Posted below are photos taken tonight of the shocks on my 1100. The blue tape is just there to align the pre-load adjuster with the shock body so I can keep track of the number of revolutions adjusters on each side is turned. I'll take the tape off when I'm satisfied with the set up. Incidentally, Progressive claims the adjusters can be turned by hand. So far, that is not the case for me. I had to use strap wrenches to turn them, which at least is easy and doesn't damage the chrome.


View attachment 38864

View attachment 38866

View attachment 38867
If I read this correctly you need a bushing to make the shocks match the bolt size?

I would not wait on that bushing as having the shocks bounce up and down against the bolts is not going to be a good thing long term.
 

· Registered
2021 Honda CMX 1100 DCT
Joined
·
22 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
If I read this correctly you need a bushing to make the shocks match the bolt size?

I would not wait on that bushing as having the shocks bounce up and down against the bolts is not going to be a good thing long term.
You are reading the above correctly sonwon. The reason I included that information was so others wont be surprised when they go to install Progressive shocks on their Rebel 1100's. As for me, I have it handled: 1) it's winter here (snow expected tonight) and I wont be riding much until spring. 2) The gap between the rubber insulator within the shock eye and the mounting bolt on the Rebel is 2mm and IMO, that's not enough to make fixing it urgent (but it is enough to make fixing it worth doing).
What I didn't mention is that Progressive includes four steel bushing in the box with the shocks.

+ Rectangle Plastic Household hardware Wood Plastic wrap


These bushings measure 23mm L x 16mm OD x 12.5mm ID. All that's needed to use these bushing is to increase the ID to 14mm either by drilling or by machining them to size. Alternatively, you can buy a package of ten (10) sleeve bearings (20mm L x 16mm OD x 14mm ID) from China for $10 on eBay or find something similar and use them. (I did consider wrapping the Honda mounting bolts with strips of soda can aluminum as a temporary measure but I knew I'd leave it there forever and dropped that idea.)
 

· Registered
Joined
·
286 Posts
You are reading the above correctly sonwon. The reason I included that information was so others wont be surprised when they go to install Progressive shocks on their Rebel 1100's. As for me, I have it handled: 1) it's winter here (snow expected tonight) and I wont be riding much until spring. 2) The gap between the rubber insulator within the shock eye and the mounting bolt on the Rebel is 2mm and IMO, that's not enough to make fixing it urgent (but it is enough to make fixing it worth doing).
What I didn't mention is that Progressive includes four steel bushing in the box with the shocks.

+ View attachment 38868

These bushings measure 23mm L x 16mm OD x 12.5mm ID. All that's needed to use these bushing is to increase the ID to 14mm either by drilling or by machining them to size. Alternatively, you can buy a package of ten (10) sleeve bearings (20mm L x 16mm OD x 14mm ID) from China for $10 on eBay or find something similar and use them. (I did consider wrapping the Honda mounting bolts with strips of soda can aluminum as a temporary measure but I knew I'd leave it there forever and dropped that idea.)
Thank you for all of the measures, this will be helpful.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
163 Posts
You are reading the above correctly sonwon. The reason I included that information was so others wont be surprised when they go to install Progressive shocks on their Rebel 1100's. As for me, I have it handled: 1) it's winter here (snow expected tonight) and I wont be riding much until spring. 2) The gap between the rubber insulator within the shock eye and the mounting bolt on the Rebel is 2mm and IMO, that's not enough to make fixing it urgent (but it is enough to make fixing it worth doing).
What I didn't mention is that Progressive includes four steel bushing in the box with the shocks.

+ View attachment 38868

These bushings measure 23mm L x 16mm OD x 12.5mm ID. All that's needed to use these bushing is to increase the ID to 14mm either by drilling or by machining them to size. Alternatively, you can buy a package of ten (10) sleeve bearings (20mm L x 16mm OD x 14mm ID) from China for $10 on eBay or find something similar and use them. (I did consider wrapping the Honda mounting bolts with strips of soda can aluminum as a temporary measure but I knew I'd leave it there forever and dropped that idea.)
If those don't work then I bet McMaster Carr would have what you need.
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
Top