Unravelling Front Shock Absorbers: Tradition vs. Young guns


Buckle up, riders! Today, TAKANI explores with you one of the most critical components for every motorcycle’s performance: the front shock absorbers. Among these, two stalwarts stand tall—the traditional telescopic and the upside-down (USD) shock absorbers. Both are used on modern electric balance bikes and electric dirt bikes. Let’s see what they are up to!


Historical Evolution

Traditional Shock Absorbers: A Timeless Tale

The rumble of the road began in the early 20th century with telescopic forks, weaving their way into motorcycle history until today. From vintage classics to modern dirt beasts, these forks have been the steadfast companions of riders across all rider landscapes. Think of them as the pioneers and evergreens, setting the foundation for what was to come.


Upside-Down Shock Absorbers: A Racing Revolution

Picture this: speed, adrenaline, and a quest for improved performance. The ‘inverter’ enters the arena.  Upside-down shock absorbers were born on the racetrack in the pursuit of speed. Initially an odd idea of the 80s racing elite, they burst into the mainstream, heralding a new era in motorcycle design.


Comparing the Titans

Traditional Shock Absorbers: The Sturdy Workhorse

Imagine the traditional telescopic forks as the tried-and-tested veterans. They’re familiar, reliable, and easy to maintain. They’ve weathered the storms, offering riders a comfortable and stable ride. But they carry a bit of weight—literally—with higher unsprung weight affecting that nimble handling we all enjoy so much.


Upside-Down Shock Absorbers: The Bold Maverick

Now, let’s shift gears to the upside-down forks, the mavericks in this tale. These disruptors were more commonly used in the 80s. They brought a lighter touch to the game, reducing unsprung weight and injecting a dose of improved rigidity into the ride. But, hold on tight, because these sophisticated tubes might need a bit closer attention when it comes to maintenance.


Advantages and Disadvantages

Traditional Shock Absorbers: Familiarity is Comfort

The old bunch holds its ground with simple design that is cost effective. It’s easy to maintain and doesn’t blow all its oil once seals start losing it. It’s the familiar friend of riders and mechanics alike. But it's not all smooth cruising—higher unsprung weight and potential flex pose challenges, especially when the rider gets a bit more enthusiastic.


Upside-Down Shock Absorbers: Lighter, Faster and Stronger?

In the opposing corner, the upside-down forks flaunt their reduced unsprung weight and enhanced stiffness, promising improved handling and better response on (and off!) the road due to lower weight and torsion. However, their higher cost, complexities and potential vulnerability to damage add a twist to their narrative. Once their seals are worn, the dampening oil flood gates open and you run fairly quickly out of oil.


Championing Modern Electric Dirt Bikes

Electric Dirt Bikes: Seeking the Perfect Partner

Let’s talk electric! Electric 2-wheelers crave a dynamic duo—a shock absorber that’s nimble, lightweight, and tough enough to handle the rough terrain.

In this arena, light weight, weight distribution and top-notch handling are the ultimate trophies.


Choosing Front Shock Absorbers for your ‘e’- two wheeler

In the arena of electric dirt bikes, where every ounce counts and agility reigns supreme, it’s time for the final showdown. Evaluating the contenders—traditional telescopic vs. upside-down—it becomes evident that the lightweight, rigid nature of upside-down shock absorbers fits like a glove for high-performing electric beasts. And last but not least: don’t they look a bit cooler on your bike?

However, for slower applications, such as electric balance bikes, when the suspension just irons out the turfed edges, the traditional telescopic shock remains a non-negotiable evergreen.



The (off-) roads have spoken, and the verdict is carved into the dusty trails: for the modern electric dirt bike seeking the perfect balance between weight, handling, and durability, the upside-down shock absorber emerges victorious.

But remember, the price must be right and in the constantly changing world of motorcycles, the quest for perfection has not ended yet—it evolves with every twist of the throttle.



Rest assured, we are not leaving you behind in the dust! If you have any questions about components of TAKANI electric dirt bikes or electric balance bikes, feel free to reach out. We are passionate about our products and are here to help. 

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