Tom ... Monroe Gas shocks installed. I don't know that they're any better or worse than another brand. Monroe is widely used in Western New York. They seem to be doing a good job on the Phoenix.
Ron ... I like your "ear wax" analogy. Your absolutely correct.
This has been quite a learning experience and I'm sure it will be one of many as I travel along.
I enjoy this forum for many reasons but especially because your getting information from individuals who own Phoenix Cruisers and not salesmen trying to talk you into buying their product.