King Shock Rebuild Instructions

Note: The following King Off-Road Racing Shocks rebuild instructions are provided courtesy of Filthy Motorsports and published with their approval.

For the most recent version of this manual as well as a PDF copy that can be downloaded and printed, visit

While these instructions are written specifically for King Shocks, the steps will be very similar for all other brands of off-road racing shocks including Fox, Bilstein, Sway-A-Way, and F-O-A.

NEW! - Need help with rebuilding your shocks? Check out the new comments section below!

King Shocks

NEW: King Shock Rebuild by Shock Service, LLC

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How to Rebuild King Off-Road Racing Shocks

One of the best features of high performance off-road racing shocks is that they can be easily serviced, repaired, rebuilt, and revalved. While this may seem like a complicated process, you have to remember that they are specifically designed to be easy to work on so that race teams can make repairs quickly, even when they are out in the middle of the desert. If this is your first time rebuilding a shock, take your time and follow these steps carefully. After a few times, you'll be able to complete the process in about 10 minutes.

King Shock Rebuild

Parts Needed For Shock Rebuild: 1 x King Shock Seal Rebuild Kit
Parts Needed for Shock Revalve: 2 x King Shock Valving Shim Stacks
Optional Parts: 1 x King Shock Oil

More Parts: Complete King Shock Parts List

King Shock Rebuild

Required Tools Recommended Tools
  • Small Allen Wrench Set
  • Spanner Wrench (2" x 3/16" Pin)
  • Dentist Pick or Small Screwdriver
  • Adjustable Crescent Wrench
  • Clean Bucket or Container
  • Paper Towels or Clean Shop Rag
  • Locite Thread Locker
  • Small Dead Blow Hammer
  • Small Pliers
  • Bench Vice
  • Shock Shaft Clamp

King Shock Rebuild

Step 1: Clean The Shock
Clean the shock completely using paper towels or a shop rag to remove any and all dust and dirt. Do not bleed the nitrogen pressure from the shock just yet.

Step 2: Loosen Set Screw
With the shock shaft fully extended, use an allen wrench to loosen the set screw in the lower wiper cap. Make sure the allen wrench is a good fit so as not to strip the screw. Unscrew it just a few turns.

King Shock Rebuild

Step 3: Loosen the Wiper Cap
Set the spanner wrench securely into the two indented holes on the wiper cap and using a medium amount of force turn the wiper cap counter-clockwise. A small tap with a dead blow hammer usually does the trick.

Do not remove the wiper cap in this step, only loosen a few turns.

Note: Nothing in this rebuild process should require more than a small to medium amount of force and everything should come apart smoothly.

King Shock Rebuild

Step 4: Bleed the Nitrogen Pressure
Bleed the pressure from the reservoir or shock body on an emulsion shock through the Schrader valve using a small screwdriver or allen wrench.

Note: The pressure is kept inside the shock through this step because it keeps the internal seal cap pressed against the snap ring to keep it from spinning freely while the wiper cap is loosened.

For the most recent version of this manual as well as a PDF copy that can be
downloaded and printed, please visit:

King Shock Rebuild

Step 5: Unscrew the Wiper Cap
Finish unscrewing the wiper cap and slide it up to the end of the shock shaft.

Step 6: Lower the Seal Cap
Press down firmly on the internal seal cap to push it down below the snap ring.

Tip: If you move the shaft up and down a few times forcefully and then bleed the pressure in the reservoir again it will create a vacuum and suck the seal cap down on its own. This may take a few tries.

King Shock Rebuild

Step 7: Remove the Snap Ring
With a small screwdriver or dentist pick, remove the snap ring and set it aside.

King Shock Rebuild

Step 8: Remove the Shock Shaft
Carefully pull on the shock shaft to remove it from the shock body.

Tip: If you plan to reuse the shock oil, be extra careful because it is easy to lose a lot of oil in this step. It may also be helpful to bleed the reservoir again to release the vacuum pressure created by pulling out the shaft.

King Shock Rebuild

Step 9: Drain the Oil
Drain the oil from the shock into a clean container.

Bypass Shocks: Make sure the bypass valves are open so the oil can drain from the bypass tubes.

Remote Reservoirs: Lift the reservoir up to drain the oil from inside the reservoir and reservoir hose.

Piggyback Reservoirs: Lean the shock body such that the oil can drain from the piggyback reservoir into the shock cylinder. Then turn the shock over and let the oil drain out.

Tip: At this stage it is a good idea to inspect the oil for unusual debris or metal shavings and inspect the shock shaft and cylinder walls for scratches and damage.

For the most recent version of this manual as well as a PDF copy that can be
downloaded and printed, please visit:

King Shock Rebuild

Step 10: Remove the Piston Retaining Nut
Secure the lower rod end (bearing side) of the shaft assembly in a vice and protect it with a towel or rubber pad, then remove the piston retaining nut.

Note: The wear band on the piston is normally good for the life of the shock and only rarely needs to be replaced.

Tip: Never clamp the shock shaft in a vice without the proper shock shaft clamps.

King Shock Rebuild

Step 11: Remove the Piston and Shims
Carefully remove the shock piston, shims, and spacers and lay them out in order.

If you are revalving your shocks, then this is the time to replace the existing shims with the new ones. Remember that compression shims go on the bottom and rebound shims go on the top, towards the nut. For help choosing new shims, see Shock Tuning.

If you are not replacing any seals, then the seal cap and wiper cap should stay on the shock shaft.

King Shock Rebuild

Step 12: Replace Cap Seals (Optional)
If you are performing a shock rebuild, remove the seal cap, spacer, and wiper cap from the shock shaft.

Remove the existing seals and o-ring carefully using a small screwdriver and/or small pliers.

The new seals are a tight fit but will push in by hand without needing much force. Take your time to make sure they are fully seated correctly.

For the most recent version of this manual as well as a PDF copy that can be
downloaded and printed, please visit:

King Shock Rebuild

Step 13: Reassemble the Shock Shaft
Slide all of the shock shaft components back onto the shock shaft in the reverse order in which they were removed.

Apply a small drop of Loctite (thread locker) to the shaft threads before tightening the piston retaining nut snugly.

Set the shock shaft assembly aside for now.

King Shock Rebuild

Step 14: Remove Bypass Tube Valves (Optional)
Remove the bypass tube valves by unscrewing the larger of the two nuts. These nuts may be a little tight and may require some force so use caution.

King Shock Rebuild

Step 15: Replace Bypass Valve O-Rings (Optional)
Using small pliers, remove the bypass valve from inside the bypass tube.

Replace the o-rings and then reinstall the valve and nut.

Tip: Make sure that the valves remain open to allow air to bleed through them during the oil filling process coming up soon.

For the most recent version of this manual as well as a PDF copy that can be
downloaded and printed, please visit:

King Shock Rebuild

Step 16: Reservoir Rebuild (Optional)
Press down on the cap(s) to expose the snap ring(s) and remove using a small screwdriver, similar to steps 6 and 7, above.

Apply a small amount of pressure to the Schrader valve to pop the caps and internal floating piston out from the reservoir cylinder.

Replace the o-rings and then reassemble.

King Shock Rebuild

Step 17: Set the Reservoir IFP
Charge the reservoir with a small amount of pressure to push the internal floating piston to the bottom of the reservoir cylinder.

Then, release the pressure from the reservoir so that it is empty.

King Shock Rebuild

Step 18: Fill the Shock Cylinder with Oil
While holding the shock cylinder upright, pour the shock oil into the cylinder until it reaches a point about one inch under the snap ring groove.

Note: For Emulsion (Non-Reservoir) Shocks - Use these oil volumes instead.

2.0 x 6" 195 cc
2.5 x 6" 400 cc
2.0 x 8" 250 cc
2.5 x 8" 510 cc
2.0 x 10" 320 cc
2.5 x 10" 640 cc
2.0 x 12" 400 cc
2.5 x 12" 800 cc
2.0 x 14" 450 cc
2.5 x 14" 900 cc
2.0 x 16" 500 cc
2.5 x 8" 1,000 cc

For the most recent version of this manual as well as a PDF copy that can be
downloaded and printed, please visit:

King Shock Rebuild

Step 19: Cap and Flip the Shock Cylinder
Using your hand or any clean flat block (a hockey puck works well), cover the open end of the cylinder and turn it upside down and back a few times to release any trapped air bubbles.

Add shock oil as needed to bring the oil level back to around one inch below the snap ring groove.

King Shock Rebuild

Step 20: Slowly Insert the Shock Shaft
Carefully place the shock shaft assembly into the shock cylinder until the entire piston is submerged. Move the shaft up and down slightly and let any remaining air bubbles work their way out.

King Shock Rebuild

Step 21: Set the Seal Cap
Slide the seal cap down to the top of the cylinder and settle it down so that it is sitting on top of the shock oil.

Push down on the seal cap with moderate force to move it down to just below the snap ring groove. Try and do this in one continuous push because this is how oil is forced into the reservoir.

Insert the snap ring into the groove.

Note: It is normal to lose a little shock oil here.

For the most recent version of this manual as well as a PDF copy that can be
downloaded and printed, please visit:

King Shock Rebuild

Step 22: Charge the Reservoir
Charge the reservoir with the desired about of Nitrogen (about 150 PSI) and then check for leaks.

Note: Sometimes this pressure will push the main seal out of the seal cap. If this happens, carefully push in back into position.

King Shock Rebuild

Step 23: Screw on the Wiper Seal
Thread the wiper seal onto the now seated wiper cap and tighten securely using the spanner wrench. A few light taps with a dead blow hammer may help.

Top: Do not over tighten the wiper cap!

King Shock Rebuild

Step 24: Tighten the Set Screw
Tighten the set screw to secure the wiper cap.

Wipe off any residual oil and cycle the shocks a few times by hand, it should move freely although with some resistance through the entire stroke.

If you hear a lot of gurgling, then there is air in the cylinder and you will need to repeat steps 21-24.

Small amounts of air are ok as they will eventually move their way through the reservoir and past the internal floating piston.

For the most recent version of this manual as well as a PDF copy that can be
downloaded and printed, please visit:

Other Shock Valving and Tuning Resources

Crawlpedia Shock Shootout
4-Link Suspension Guide
Shock Rebuild Parts
Shock Valving Guide
Shock Tuning Guide
Shock Valving Shim Stack Examples
Coilover Spring Rate Calculator
Shop: Custom Built and Tuned Shocks

Filthy Motorsports

Crawlpedia is proudly supported by Filthy Motorsports, a specialty off-road racing and 4x4 parts shop in Boulder, Colorado.

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