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Discussion Starter #1
Hey everyone! I cant seem to find an answer so and direction/ advice would be awesome. When adjusting to increase the load, would I have to loosen the locknuts first or can I start turning?


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not 100% sure what you're dealing with...

But, if you have an outside micrometer, you can determine the exact size of the spanner before the "buy and return" method. Either that, or see which size wrench fits around it tightly - there's your diameter. Just make sure it has Standard and Metric. ...might save you a headache later.
 

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1) Jack the bike up so the rear tire is off the ground. The more clearance you have the easier it is. Don't forget to strap the bike down. You don't want it falling on you while you’re wrenching underneath it.

2) Loosen the jam nut all the way out. It’s a 1-11/16" nut. If it doesn't want to loosen easily (which is often the case), soak it in some penetrating lube.

3) With a spanner wrench (HD p/n 94448-82B) turn the adjuster plate counter-clockwise (so the shock housing moves towards the front of the bike) until it’s up against the jam nut.

4) Then take a light colored paint pen, or a piece of duct tape, and mark the 6 o'clock position on the adjuster plate to use as a reference point when doing your adjustment. Don't worry if they're not in exactly the same position on both shocks. That’s normal.

5) Now you’re ready to adjust the shocks to your weight/load.

6) With the spanner wrench, turn the adjuster plate clockwise no more than 4 complete turns by counting how many times the mark from step 4 crosses the 6 o'clock position. 0 turns is the stiffest setting, and 4 turns is the softest setting.

7) While holding the adjuster plate in place with the spanner wrench, tighten the jam nut up against the adjuster plate by turning the nut clockwise.

8) Now repeat the exact same process on the other shock. The key is to adjust both shocks equally.

The general rule of thumb I use is:
4 turns for load <= 180 lbs.
3 turns for 180lbs < load <= 235lbs
2 turns for 235lbs < load <= 300lbs
1 turn for 300lbs < load <= 375lbs
0 turns for 375 < load

Examples:
235lbs solo rider: 3 full turns
235lbs solo rider + 32lbs pack: 2.5 turns
235lbs rider + 150lbs passenger + 32lbs pack: 0.5 turns
 

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No. It doesn't matter how the bike is lifted. Follow those instructions and you'll be fine.
 

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1) Jack the bike up so the rear tire is off the ground. The more clearance you have the easier it is. Don't forget to strap the bike down. You don't want it falling on you while you’re wrenching underneath it.

2) Loosen the jam nut all the way out. It’s a 1-11/16" nut. If it doesn't want to loosen easily (which is often the case), soak it in some penetrating lube.

3) With a spanner wrench (HD p/n 94448-82B) turn the adjuster plate counter-clockwise (so the shock housing moves towards the front of the bike) until it’s up against the jam nut.

4) Then take a light colored paint pen, or a piece of duct tape, and mark the 6 o'clock position on the adjuster plate to use as a reference point when doing your adjustment. Don't worry if they're not in exactly the same position on both shocks. That’s normal.

5) Now you’re ready to adjust the shocks to your weight/load.

6) With the spanner wrench, turn the adjuster plate clockwise no more than 4 complete turns by counting how many times the mark from step 4 crosses the 6 o'clock position. 0 turns is the stiffest setting, and 4 turns is the softest setting.

7) While holding the adjuster plate in place with the spanner wrench, tighten the jam nut up against the adjuster plate by turning the nut clockwise.

8) Now repeat the exact same process on the other shock. The key is to adjust both shocks equally.

The general rule of thumb I use is:
4 turns for load <= 180 lbs.
3 turns for 180lbs < load <= 235lbs
2 turns for 235lbs < load <= 300lbs
1 turn for 300lbs < load <= 375lbs
0 turns for 375 < load

Examples:
235lbs solo rider: 3 full turns
235lbs solo rider + 32lbs pack: 2.5 turns
235lbs rider + 150lbs passenger + 32lbs pack: 0.5 turns

Are you sure about that jam nut size? 1-11/16ths is huge. I thought it was like 15/16ths or so.
 

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Swing arm shock adjustment on fatboy

1) Jack the bike up so the rear tire is off the ground. The more clearance you have the easier it is. Don't forget to strap the bike down. You don't want it falling on you while you’re wrenching underneath it.

2) Loosen the jam nut all the way out. It’s a 1-11/16" nut. If it doesn't want to loosen easily (which is often the case), soak it in some penetrating lube.

3) With a spanner wrench (HD p/n 94448-82B) turn the adjuster plate counter-clockwise (so the shock housing moves towards the front of the bike) until it’s up against the jam nut.

4) Then take a light colored paint pen, or a piece of duct tape, and mark the 6 o'clock position on the adjuster plate to use as a reference point when doing your adjustment. Don't worry if they're not in exactly the same position on both shocks. That’s normal.

5) Now you’re ready to adjust the shocks to your weight/load.

6) With the spanner wrench, turn the adjuster plate clockwise no more than 4 complete turns by counting how many times the mark from step 4 crosses the 6 o'clock position. 0 turns is the stiffest setting, and 4 turns is the softest setting.

7) While holding the adjuster plate in place with the spanner wrench, tighten the jam nut up against the adjuster plate by turning the nut clockwise.

8) Now repeat the exact same process on the other shock. The key is to adjust both shocks equally.

The general rule of thumb I use is:
4 turns for load <= 180 lbs.
3 turns for 180lbs < load <= 235lbs
2 turns for 235lbs < load <= 300lbs
1 turn for 300lbs < load <= 375lbs
0 turns for 375 < load

Examples:
235lbs solo rider: 3 full turns
235lbs solo rider + 32lbs pack: 2.5 turns
235lbs rider + 150lbs passenger + 32lbs pack: 0.5 turns
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Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: AZ
Posts: 54
leeanders is on a distinguished road

I wanted to adjust the swingarm shocks on my 2013 Fatboy - this is what I encountered:

Bought the spanner wrench - loosened the lock nuts and began turning the shock clockwise to the stop, to reach the softest setting. (That's what the Harley Tech advised to reach the softest setting) The one on the right as I was looking at them - actually it was the shock on the left side of the swingarm reached the stop, as indicated. At that point, the shock shaft, at the rear of the shock had moved out to an extended position by about 1/2 inch, as I believe it should have. The shock on the left, as I looked at them, actually the one on the right side of the swingarm, continued to turn clockwise without reaching the stop - when I looked at the rear shaft, there didn't appear to have been any movement outward.

I believe I may have a bad shock - have you, or anyone else experience this when adjusting these shocks? Thanks
 

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I don't adjust them that often so I'm not sure of your issue, however my Wife is complaining that the ride is a bit stiff so I might just dial it back a turn or so and see if that helps her or keep trying to convince her to let me spend $1300 on Shockgun air shocks.

I'll have to see then if I can determine what my "shafts" look like and get back to you.

Also, you might also post you issue on hdforums.com.
I often bounce back and forth between the two forums to get the most answers.
 

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I don't adjust them that often so I'm not sure of your issue, however my Wife is complaining that the ride is a bit stiff so I might just dial it back a turn or so and see if that helps her or keep trying to convince her to let me spend $1300 on Shockgun air shocks.

I'll have to see then if I can determine what my "shafts" look like and get back to you.

Also, you might also post you issue on hdforums.com.
I often bounce back and forth between the two forums to get the most answers.
What's the meaning of stiff, it possible she means it's bottoming out.
I found that to be what was happening and I cranked the shocks to ward the lock nut 11/2 turns, rides smooth and doesn't bottom 2 up. A strap wrench works on the can as well as the crappie HD spanner. Remember to mark reference points on the cans so you know how much they were equally changed.

Al
 

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Are you sure about that jam nut size? 1-11/16ths is huge. I thought it was like 15/16ths or so.

Those are my instructions. I posted them a few months ago because another guy needed help adjusting his shocks. The jam nut is not that big. That was a typo.


-Rohan
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Got it dialed in. I was trying to loosen the nut on the shock absorber itself and didn't realize the flanged nut is the lock nut (11/16th"). Once I busted it loosen it was easy to adjust. I had my setting on the stiffest but the bike felt off and I didn't feel "one" with it. Went down to the 2nd to the lowest and now it feels just right. Thanks for everyones help!


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Just did this adjustment yesterday (Saturday 19 Oct). Don't forget that the shock shaft has a flat spot that you can put a wrench on to keep it from moving, which will aid in loosing and tighting the jam nut and adjusting the shock.
 
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