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After reading several posts on the preload adjuster only starting to pump fluid at higher levels...I thought I better check my bike. Well, the pump doesn't kick in until about 10, which means it needs attention. The question is do I take it to a Honda dealer or attempt to service it myself. I have read that Fred's Video's are excellent, and was wondering if they provide detailed instructions on how to do the service.

I also need to change the air filter and coolant, so I am thinking the cost of the video's would be negligible compared to the amount of $$ I would be paying a dealer. I don't think any of these require an experienced mechanic...should I go for it?
 

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Get the videos (if still available) and start wrenching! You wont regret doing so. Not only will you learn about your bike and its workings but you will know that the work done on YOUR bike is done correctly!
 

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After reading several posts on the preload adjuster only starting to pump fluid at higher levels...I thought I better check my bike. Well, the pump doesn't kick in until about 10, which means it needs attention. The question is do I take it to a Honda dealer or attempt to service it myself. I have read that Fred's Video's are excellent, and was wondering if they provide detailed instructions on how to do the service.

I also need to change the air filter and coolant, so I am thinking the cost of the video's would be negligible compared to the amount of $$ I would be paying a dealer. I don't think any of these require an experienced mechanic...should I go for it?
All you need to do is top off the oil level in the actuator. it is a super easy job and a "Cave man can do it". It will take you about 2 hours and your bike will ride like never before.
Here is a link that is a good presentation. Remember put your bike on the center stand and set the pump number on"1" very important you do this first.




http://goldwing.eurekaboy.com/reservoirfill.htm
 

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I just bought Fred's video's on WingStuff, which I am sure will give me the confidence to do the preload service, change the air filter, and replace the coolant. I might even flush the brakes and clutch if all goes well.

What type of hydraulic fluid do I need to get for the preload reservoir? I think that is all I need....
 

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I found this particular procedure to be easy and quick, with a minimum of removing parts....Copied from elsewhere:


To Test the Actuator

1) Place the bike on the center stand.
2) Turn the ignition to accessory.
3) Lower the pre-set to "O".
4) Now press the UP arrow button to increase the the preload setting and listen for a sound pitch change from the Actuator. (Standing on the Right side of the bike, listening at the front of the saddlebag saddlebag). The actuator is right behind the black plastic piece with a hole in it that is attached to the side-cover.
5) When you hear the sound pitch change release the UP arrow button and look at the Display to see where the Actuator starts to add fluid through the hose to the Shock Pre-Loader.
6) If your settings are anything above 0-1 it's because of air in the system and it needs to be properly refilled (See Directions below to properly re-fill the actuator)



To refill the actuator:

1) Place the bike on center stand.
2)
Turn the ignition key to Accessory and lower your presets to "0'.
3) Remove the seat and side covers.
4) Remove the rear fender. (just fender A, the panel between the saddlebags that mounts the license tag)
5) Remove the three bolts inside the right saddlebag.
6) Remove the bolt on the outside upper right of the saddlebag to the frame.
7) Now tilt out the bottom of the saddlebag and let it rest there - you do not have to disconnect anything further! I took a piece of wood about 1.5 to 2" thick and gingerly wedged it between the saddlebag and the frame. This gave me plenty of room to remove the 3 bolts in step #8.
8 )Now remove the 2-12 mm & 1-10 mm bolts from the Actuator securing it to the frame.
9) Now with a pair of needle nosed pliers - squeeze the push in cable holder for the Grey connector.
10) Now you can remove the other connector from the Actuator.
11) Now using brake clean, spray the area at the banjo bolt/hose so it is clean - you'll be making marks on it there!
12) Now with a sharpie - make a dot on the top of the banjo fitting so you'll know which end is up later on!
13) Now make a small line right under the dot you just made to the actuator body. What you are doing here is marking the Orientation of the banjo fitting to the actuator body and making sure you put it back in the same place-this is Important so the hose doesn't get kinked when the actuator is bolted back on the frame later!
14) Now you can remove the 10 mm banjo bolt from the hose.
15) Either with a helper or duct/masking tape-try and keep that end of the hose as high as you can so fluid doesn't drain out of it while you continue to the next step. (I run the tape up from the hose to the truck if working by myself!) This keeps the hose out of my way for the time being.
16) Now with a thin screwdriver, insert it into the banjo bolt hole in the actuator and push the seal piston down with a little pressure until it bottoms out. If you feel or hear it move then try to push it down again until it stays down! You're trying to fill as much of the actuator reservoir as possible here!
17) Now you are ready to refill the actuator, it only takes a couple ounces to top it off.
18 ) Once you have it topped off, replace the hose according to the marks you made earlier.
19) Now before you bolt it back on -"Test it first"
20) Plug both connectors back in the actuator and start the bike.
21) The preload is at "0". Press the UP arrow button to increase preload setting and listen for the sound of the pitch change as the electric motor begins to actually do it's work of pressurizing the preload actuator. If it's not changing pitch it's just pushing air, not oil. Once you hear it change sound - let the button go and look at the dash - If it's at "0" then you are done, if it at 1 or more then repeat the last steps to add a tad more fluid.

Your goal is to hear the sound change between 0 and 1.
 

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FYI, the dealers will refuse to do this, and they will tell you that the unit is not serviceable and that you'll need to buy a whole new rear shock assy. So don't even waste your time asking them about it. This is why I just decided to take mine apart on my own back in 2003 and see if it really was non-serviceable. The rest is history.
 

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I just bought Fred's video's on WingStuff, which I am sure will give me the confidence to do the preload service, change the air filter, and replace the coolant. I might even flush the brakes and clutch if all goes well.

What type of hydraulic fluid do I need to get for the preload reservoir? I think that is all I need....

Pretty sure its Honda Pro SS-7 Suspension Fluid that you need. It's a 5W fluid.
 

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Yep, I did the service myself and it wasn't difficult at all. Just takes about an hour and you will have it working great in no time.
 
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