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  #21  
Old 20th January 2021
slamtry slamtry is offline
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Thanks Pete, I'm gonna go and try releasing the bottom end first; as you say, if that is just held on by a bolt that runs through it from the outside, then pulling the bolt right out will release the pressure and should make it easy to get the top end off. I'll have a look at it tomorrow when the sun comes out again.
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  #22  
Old 20th January 2021
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wedge wedge is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slamtry View Post
Thanks Pete, I'm gonna go and try releasing the bottom end first; as you say, if that is just held on by a bolt that runs through it from the outside, then pulling the bolt right out will release the pressure and should make it easy to get the top end off. I'll have a look at it tomorrow when the sun comes out again.
Yes, and I just added to that last post of mine.
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  #23  
Old 20th January 2021
drisko drisko is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slamtry View Post
Thanks Pete, I'm gonna go and try releasing the bottom end first; as you say, if that is just held on by a bolt that runs through it from the outside, then pulling the bolt right out will release the pressure and should make it easy to get the top end off. I'll have a look at it tomorrow when the sun comes out again.

The rear shocks are under compression anytime the rear wheel is on the ground. You might be able to get the bottom bolt out without lifting the rear end, but you are likely to find that the shock will rapidly expand to release tension. Assuming that causes no damage to you or the bike, the shock will be extended and the distance between the bottom bolt and top bolt will be shorter than the shock so you would need to compress it to get it back in place. Lift the rear end so the shocks aren’t under compression and then you can use wood blocks under the wheel to adjust the height until the shock comes off easily. I know you said you didn’t want to use a lift, but most people posting are telling you to lift it. There’s a reason for that. You do you but if it were me I’d listen to the people you are asking for advice. Just my two cents.


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  #24  
Old 20th January 2021
slamtry slamtry is offline
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I haven't got a lift but in any case I think it can be done without one. So I will be doing it or not doing it with the tools I have.
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  #25  
Old 20th January 2021
Iron Mike Iron Mike is offline
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Just pull the shock off already. It won’t fly away or shoot through the roof. It may be a little snug but it’s not going anywhere. It may not just slide back on when your done, but may need a little coaxing to get back on. Slide it back on the upper stud and you may have to lift up a tad while starting the lower bolt. Not a big deal.
The way some people look at a task is much different than others. Some have to plan a month out to change a spark plug.
This thread has gone on way too long.
My guess is your going to complete it and wonder what all the fuss was about.
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  #26  
Old 20th January 2021
45Brit 45Brit is offline
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If you don’t have a bike lift, and intend doing your own maintenance on a 500lb motorcycle, with no centrestand, I’d suggest that you get one. They aren’t expensive and have all sorts of uses, and you can raise and lower the bike with one foot without risking putting your back out.

My tool of choice for removing and refitting suspension units, is an old flat-blade screwdriver about 10” long. I can exert a useful amount of leverage accurately with one hand, and hold the unit in place while I slip the lower bolt in. Useful for just springing the bolt to get it out, too.
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  #27  
Old 20th January 2021
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wedge wedge is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Iron Mike View Post
Just pull the shock off already. It won’t fly away or shoot through the roof. It may be a little snug but it’s not going anywhere. It may not just slide back on when your done, but may need a little coaxing to get back on. Slide it back on the upper stud and you may have to lift up a tad while starting the lower bolt. Not a big deal.
The way some people look at a task is much different than others. Some have to plan a month out to change a spark plug.
This thread has gone on way too long.
My guess is your going to complete it and wonder what all the fuss was about.
Exactly. There is too much false information floating in this thread. This isn't rocket science.

I also explained how to get the shocks to fully extend without a lift.

I repeat it can be done two ways. Get a block that is just a bit higher than the bottom of frame. Get an assistant if you feel uncomfortable but I do it alone all the time. Get on left side of bike and position yourself forward of the stand and holding the left bar grip, pull towards you on the rear of the frame. The bike will tilt up on the stand and front wheel. At that point the rear is tire is off the floor. Now kick that block under the right rear of the frame and let the bike settle on the block. With this method the bike is left sitting on front wheel, stand, and block. Those three contact points keep the rear wheel off the ground. You will note that swing arm only falls so far. That's because as I have been saying, the shocks will be topped out.

The second method I described earlier. That is to set the block under both frame rails and when you tilt the bike back it will sit on the front tire and the block only so it will sit straight up. Not necessary for pulling the right hand shock, so the block under the right rear frame rail will suffice.

NOTE: The shocks will top out no matter if the tension is full on hard or as loose as it gets. Under the lowest setting for tension, the spring is still too strong for you to man handle it anyway, so releasing pressure is a waste of time and energy, it is of no use to you at all and it forces you to readjust the shock later and waste more time. Anyone here enjoy wasting time?

To Dan. Of course I will help you at any time, you are always welcome here. I am posting mainly to clear up the false claim that the shock is going to hit you in the face when you pull it.

The only time you need to release pressure on the spring is when you disassemble the shock itself (which is what I mistakenly thought you were trying to do in the beginning of this thread). But even then backing the spring off won't help at all. For that you need a spring compressor to get all the tension off of the retainers. I doubt there is anyone in this forum strong enough to compress the springs by hand even at the lowest setting.
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  #28  
Old 20th January 2021
45Brit 45Brit is offline
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I’ve used blocks and wedges under the wheel to raise it, before now. I’ve worked on bikes on the centre stand, on blocks of wood, and laying over on the Side stand.

These days I use a lift, and the reason is simple - it’s easier than the other ways. I use the same lift for all my bikes, with a selection of small wood blocks (because some bikes, including most Sportsters, have exhaust bikes below the lower frame rail). I can push it around on its wheels with one foot, move the bike when raised and raise and lower the bike small increments with one foot.

I’d say that was worth $100 of anyone’s money, because it just goes on being useful.

Same with the thing about taking the wheel out. Sportsters have very little clearance under the back mudguard, and the bolts holding the side strut on are hard to reach. You CAN do it, but it’s easier to drop the wheel. Check the wiring while you’re under there, make sure it’s secure and not chafing. Check the wheel bearings and brake pads. Adjust the chain.
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  #29  
Old 21st January 2021
45Brit 45Brit is offline
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You need to release the bottom first, because the top stud is welded to the frame. The suspension unit slips out of the bottom clevis, then slides off the top stud. Reinstall in reverse order - top first.
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  #30  
Old 21st January 2021
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wedge wedge is offline
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Dan. I texted you a few pictures with no reply, do you still have the same number?
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