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Thread: TK1 vs. Acme Aero (SEP 2020)

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    Question TK1 vs. Acme Aero (SEP 2020)

    I've been researching landing gear for my May 2021 delivery of a CubCrafters FX-3. As this is a higher gross weight cub than the most prevalent SS model. I'm learning about what landing gear is the best fit for this aircraft at 2000 lbs gw. I asked in another thread about Beringer ALG vs Acme Aero and now I'm looking for opinions on TK1 shock monster vs. Acme Aero in their current generations as both have evolved over the years.

    I welcome your opinions and experience to help me decide on the best shock for a FX3 taking into account both cold and hot climates, hard landings, etc.

    Thank you.

    Edit - haven't had enough coffee! It's OCT now! Ugh. Mods, if you can change the title from SEP 2020 to OCT 2020 I appreciate it.
    Last edited by hawgdrvr; 10-06-2020 at 10:14 AM.

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    Do some searching and you'll see this has been discussed more than once. Both brands had early growing pains but these days both brands are very reliable and highly respected. I chose TK-1 for shocks and more recently for gear. Acme makes both shocks and gear and I'd be happy with their products as well. Both suspensions are better than what's available to the standard category guys.
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    Quote Originally Posted by stewartb View Post
    Do some searching and you'll see this has been discussed more than once. Both brands had early growing pains but these days both brands are very reliable and highly respected. I chose TK-1 for shocks and more recently for gear. Acme makes both shocks and gear and I'd be happy with their products as well as well. Both suspensions are better than what's available to the standard category guys.
    I did search and read the threads which were mostly dated. Just seeing where we are with recommendations of late and for heavier cubs.

    FYI I used google and typed: site:supercub.org TK1 vs. Acme

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    Both will be far more capable of absorbing big hits than you'll be willing to subject your new plane to. My biggest hits have been from pilot error. When I scrunched my face in anticipation of hard landings and big noises I was treated to the equivalent of jumping into a big pile of pillows. It's really hard to imagine how good these shocks are until you experience them.

    Your plane isn't heavy, by the way.
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  5. #5
    www.SkupTech.com mike mcs repair's Avatar
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    2000 lb is pretty standard for Super Cubs.


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    I realize I misspoke as I was comparing against LSA's not realizing the SS's were 1865? Learning continues...just trying to determine best shock option for my FX3. Thanks all.

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    Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    I maintain one of the first production FX3s that has 700 plus hours on it and Acme Gen 3 I believe struts. I hoist it up and check pressures at the condition inspection. The early valve cores would leak off but the new steel ones do not. I have had zero issues from a maintenance stand point on the 3-4 I have maintained. Just had a friend buy an EX2 with TK1s but know little about them. I was told the shocks on the TK1s are manufactured by someone else but do not know that for a fact. You could probably call Tony and find out. Met him at the Lone Star STOL contest but that was my only dealing with him. Have talked to Matt and Eric from Acme several times both at events, shows and on the phone. They have always been helpful.I do know that Cub Crafters finally came around and started installing Acme at the factory where it use to go to Tac Aero for the install. The Cub Crafters dealer here in Texas, Mike Sasser swears by the Acmes and installs them on all the airplanes he sells and he is pretty good at putting them through their paces.
    Steve Pierce

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    But when will they be certified?!?!

    🤣


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    Occasional poster Adam Grenda put a video on Facebook a couple of weeks ago that shows what TK-1s do on rough ground when the pilot's fighting unfavorable winds with a heavy load. Very impressive. Maybe he'll share? Adam?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chogf22 View Post
    But when will they be certified?!?!




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    November.....notice I didn’t say what yr

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    Mauleguy's Avatar
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    I put acme gen 4 on the Javron Cub, amazing how smooth they are in the rough stuff. I also like the slim package they packed the performance into vs the TK1
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    In what I'm finding it's one thing that it's a smooth ride (that's the compression side of the shock) it's another with how the shock holds up under tension (pull) such as a hard landing. I'm finding far too many FX-3's with it's gear spread eagle. I want a landing gear system that will hold up under those unfortunate situations such as a FX3 wind sheer event, someone stalling it slightly high, etc. I realize safety cables are a backup but I'm just seeing too many broken shocks in my research. The TK1's seem heavier duty and may be a safer option for extreme conditions and/or unfortunate and costly circumstance. Educate me if wrong...trying to make an informed decision. Beringer seems to be the strongest configuration of them all but I just don't care much for that look.
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    Mauleguy's Avatar
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    Just saw pictures of TK1 failure in Alaska when I was up last month. Anything can break with enough abuse, safety cables for sure...

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    Quote Originally Posted by hawgdrvr View Post
    In what I'm finding it's one thing that it's a smooth ride (that's the compression side of the shock) it's another with how the shock holds up under tension (pull) such as a hard landing. I'm finding far too many FX-3's with it's gear spread eagle. I want a landing gear system that will hold up under those unfortunate situations such as a FX3 wind sheer event, someone stalling it slightly high, etc. I realize safety cables are a backup but I'm just seeing too many broken shocks in my research. The TK1's seem heavier duty and may be a safer option for extreme conditions and/or unfortunate and costly circumstance. Educate me if wrong...trying to make an informed decision. Beringer seems to be the strongest configuration of them all but I just don't care much for that look.
    Acme uses an internal spring and gas dampening. Their shock works in extension.

    TK-1 uses dual gas shocks on a cleverly designed slider tube. Their shocks work in compression. It isn't intuitive when you look at them.

    In the picture the shock on the right is in full extension, the one on the left is neutral.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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    I want to know when forced to extend at high force they will hold up and not separate.

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    Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    Watch the last landing here where the prop hit the ground, no bounce out of the Acmes. My AOSS would have sent me flying again.
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    www.SkupTech.com mike mcs repair's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mauleguy View Post
    Just saw pictures of TK1 failure in Alaska when I was up last month. Anything can break with enough abuse, safety cables for sure...

    where did it fail? they have an extra 3/8" hole on the inner slide tube, that looked like a weak thing to me....

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Pierce View Post
    Watch the last landing here where the prop hit the ground, no bounce out of the Acmes. My AOSS would have sent me flying again.
    That's IMPRESSIVE!
    Remember, These are the Good old Days!
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  19. #19
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    slide tube broke at hole from what I remember seeing
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    The video doesn’t even do it justice. I was on the approach side of the field during her landing. The force at which she hit was significant. There was also a slight rise in the terrain there. I was amazed that not only did the acmes not break but they absorbed the hit. Props to that young woman for also keeping her cool while things were happening fast!

    I’m not a fan boy for Acme. I’m a fan boy for stuff that works. Pstol flaps, bushwheels, extended gear, vgs, brake boosters, long props and Acmes work.
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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by hawgdrvr View Post
    In what I'm finding it's one thing that it's a smooth ride (that's the compression side of the shock) it's another with how the shock holds up under tension (pull) such as a hard landing. I'm finding far too many FX-3's with it's gear spread eagle. I want a landing gear system that will hold up under those unfortunate situations such as a FX3 wind sheer event, someone stalling it slightly high, etc. I realize safety cables are a backup but I'm just seeing too many broken shocks in my research. The TK1's seem heavier duty and may be a safer option for extreme conditions and/or unfortunate and costly circumstance. Educate me if wrong...trying to make an informed decision. Beringer seems to be the strongest configuration of them all but I just don't care much for that look.
    Curious to see these broken shocks. Have seen the early pictures from several years ago but if there are more recent I would like to see them. I am maintaining several and am curious to see what is breaking.
    Steve Pierce

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    And what guys are doing to break them. I see some crazy stuff being done on Acmes and TKs and they continue to amaze.
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    Just to be clear - you can still bounce on Acmes! Not saying how I know.........
    You still couldn’t pry them off my plane!
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  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Pierce View Post
    Watch the last landing here where the prop hit the ground, no bounce out of the Acmes. My AOSS would have sent me flying again.
    Iím open to sponsors. Sure would be nice for someone else to pay the bills.


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    Quote Originally Posted by RaisedByWolves View Post
    I’m open to sponsors. Sure would be nice for someone else to pay the bills.


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    Hell, Ford. If you and I could figure out how to fly like that girl we’d have no problem finding sponsors
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    Does anyone have a picture of that SS? I'd love to see the result of that incident to learn from it. Also want to know it the Acme's failed on that landing and if she had safety cables that prevented it from being worse.

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    Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    No the Acme's did not fail and no she did not have safety cables. None of the Carbon Cubs I maintain with Acme or the one with TK1 have safety cables. The FX3 I picked up off the runway failed the AOSS and it didn't have a safety cable either but safety cables do nothing for side loads.
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    Eddie Foy's Avatar
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    Only damage was to the prop! I was there also. She stuck it hard and it stayed stuck!

    Quote Originally Posted by hawgdrvr View Post
    Does anyone have a picture of that SS? I'd love to see the result of that incident to learn from it. Also want to know it the Acme's failed on that landing and if she had safety cables that prevented it from being worse.
    "Put out my hand and touched the face of God!"

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    Great to hear. Thanks for clarifying.

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    Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	51545


    Quote Originally Posted by hawgdrvr View Post
    Does anyone have a picture of that SS? I'd love to see the result of that incident to learn from it. Also want to know it the Acme's failed on that landing and if she had safety cables that prevented it from being worse.
    "Put out my hand and touched the face of God!"

  31. #31

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    I'm still a safety cable fan. For them to save the plane from a hard hit like that the shock would need to take most of the load before it failed.

    I've been told that TKs provide more travel than Acmes. Anyone have numbers on that? Around here a few guys I know increase pressure in their 35s and reduce pressure in their TKs to compensate. Even with some shock sag they still have plenty of travel. And for ops on rough ground some sag is a good thing.

  32. #32

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    who is this mystery gal? is she married?

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by tempdoug View Post
    who is this mystery gal? is she married?
    17 years old
    Last edited by 40m; 10-08-2020 at 02:03 PM.

    From Genesis: "And God promised men that good and obedient wives would be
    found in all corners of the earth."

    Then he made the earth round... and He laughed and laughed and laughed!

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    Eddie Foy's Avatar
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    Jaden Newman 17

    Quote Originally Posted by tempdoug View Post
    who is this mystery gal? is she married?
    "Put out my hand and touched the face of God!"
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    Is that a Sport Cub? Or Carbon Cub? I wonder if I would have the strength to let my little girl participate in an event like this? Itís really cool...but Iím an overprotective dad I guess...lol. Back when I was 17 though (before cell phones and GPS) my dad let me take his J3 to go off to who knows where to camp our though...my mom used to freak out because I never really knew where i was going....I always promised to call IF I could hitch hiker to a pay phone....seldom happened. Lol
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    She’s interviewed here
    https://youtu.be/L97wd8L1Xb0

  37. #37

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    Quote Originally Posted by tempdoug View Post
    who is this mystery gal? is she married?
    Easy Jerry Lee.....17 will get you 27
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    ha, thinking about the son, hes 22. been trying to teach him to stay independant, but maybe not.
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  39. #39
    Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hawgdrvr View Post
    In what I'm finding it's one thing that it's a smooth ride (that's the compression side of the shock) it's another with how the shock holds up under tension (pull) such as a hard landing. I'm finding far too many FX-3's with it's gear spread eagle. I want a landing gear system that will hold up under those unfortunate situations such as a FX3 wind sheer event, someone stalling it slightly high, etc. I realize safety cables are a backup but I'm just seeing too many broken shocks in my research. The TK1's seem heavier duty and may be a safer option for extreme conditions and/or unfortunate and costly circumstance. Educate me if wrong...trying to make an informed decision. Beringer seems to be the strongest configuration of them all but I just don't care much for that look.
    Can you elaborate on these cases of broken shocks you have found in your research?
    Steve Pierce

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  40. #40
    RaisedByWolves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Pierce View Post
    Can you elaborate on these cases of broken shocks you have found in your research?
    Yeah like all the fx3ís that loose directional control fold the shocks up like a pretzel and blame the shock for loosing control. Like you say, you can break an anvil if you try hard enough


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