On the rebound side of things, it is the same principle: You do not want to run a lot of rebound on the left sides when the track is wet, because you want the weight to transfer to the right side easily. However, on the right side you might want to have a little more rebound because you want to keep the weight from transferring back to the left side of the car once you enter the straightaway. By running a lot of rebound in the right-side shocks, you can keep that weight pinned on the right side of the car.

Here are some basic changes recommended by Ohlins Shocks to improve the handling of your dirt car:

Loose In
1) Decrease compression on RF
2) Decrease rebound on left sides
3) Increase compression on RR

Loose Middle
1) Increase compression on LF
2) Increase compression on LR

Loose Off
1) Increase compression on LR
2) Decrease rebound in both fronts

Tight In
1) Increase compression on RF
2) Decrease compression on LF

Tight Middle
1) Increase rebound on LF
2) Increase rebound on both fronts
3) Decrease compression on LR

Tight Off
1) Decrease rebound on RF
2) Increase rebound on LF
3) Decrease compression on LR
4) Increase compression on RR

Adjusting shocks correctly can be extremely frustrating. This is why Ohlins recommends only making small changes. If you have adjustable shocks, move them only 3 to 4 clicks. Or if you have the air pressure adjustments, adjust only 10 to 20 psi. It all comes back to keeping a steady notebook with the shock changes you have made and the track conditions that you tried them on. Make sure you test these shock combinations in your car before you race them so that you know how your car is going to respond.

For Street Stock racers who have those pesky claim rules, and who do not want to invest hundreds of dollars into each individual shock, Pro Shocks makes an adjustable Dirt Street Stock shock for only $69. This will give you the adjustability you are looking for without having to fork out the dough. These shocks are meant to replace your OEM units, but if you just want a good set of aftermarket shocks that will improve your handling, they offer the same shocks without the adjustment for only $58.

That being said, if you are buying shocks, I would advise investing in a set of shocks that are adjustable. That's because, let's face it, there is only one way to learn how your car responds to different shock adjustments, and that is by trying different numbers in the shocks. You can learn what works with your car and what doesn't. It's that simple. The teams that have figured it out didn't do so by hiring an expensive shock specialist. Instead, the crew tried different adjustments and learned firsthand what works.

Make no mistake about it-there is major speed in shocks. Some teams look at shocks as band-aids and that is not the case at all. Shocks can make or break your weekend, but they can only get you so far. If your setup isn't up to par, or your engine package is lacking, then it doesn't matter how great your shocks are because you will not see marked improvement in your race program. If, however, you have every other piece in place, the right shock package might be the piece that puts you out front. And isn't that where we all want to be?

RE Suspension Pro Shocks
1715 Lakes Parkway
Ohlins Shocks