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Ak-20's Gas Charged Or Not Gas Charged


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Looking into these and the gas charged model is about twice the cost of the non gas filled model.

Reading what the description (sales pitch) have to say the gas charged information makes it sound like it is so far superior or that the non gas charged is so inferior there is no other choice.

 

I have ridden on forks with just new damping stacks and springs, with forks that are stock and forks that have the traditional non gas filled Ak20 cartrides installed yes each step up in cost has been noticeablely better. Perhaps there is my own answer?

The difference in cost from having new compression and rebound valves installed on oe fork components...lets just use $750 out the door total cost of this service including the new compression stack, new rebound stack and new springs, oil, seals - to going to the Ak20 non gas charged at (999 for the kit includes everything but seals and install) installed lets use $1200

* it is significantly more time invested to install new valving stacks than it is to "drop in" an all new cartridge already set up-so labor cost if you aren't doing it yourself will be likley atleast another $100+ to replace your rebound and damping shim stacks and valve body- thus taking away some of the cost difference in the products themselves

even at this price difference the Ak is a noticeably better product and IMO opinion worth the extra expense, perhaps an even more noticeable improvement than going from oe to having new valving and springs?

 

But to then jump up to around $2200 installed to go to the gas charged Ak, well how much better does that have to be to make it worth an extra $1k?

I am sure the top racers likely use the latest and greatest, but for us mere mortals who aren't nearly as fast, is the difference enough to justify the cost?

 

So the question really is;

Does anyone have experience with the gas charged AK-20 or any similar product from another manufacturer? How much difference could you actually feel/tell from a non gas charged unit or from having aftermarket valving stacks and springs installed?

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Based on the product description over at Traxxion Dynamics, the gas charging of the fork cartridge is less about using the air as a progressive spring rate, and more about keeping the oil under pressure at all times to reduce or eliminate cavitation in the fork under some certain road conditions.

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