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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hey Gang,
First off, the Wing is an '08 Level II and has right at 38K on the clock. I rebuilt the front forks back about a year ago and just finished the first coolant change since the bike was new. So, I figured I should delve into the back shock and at least, check the operational level of the preload. I've had it at 25 now for at least 5+ years. I don't adjust it 'cause we ride two up about 99.9999% of the time and I just leave it there. But, we get some pretty harsh bottoming out on a frequent basis so, time to see whatever I can do about it.

So, since the very expensive SERVICE MANUAL was of zero help, I basically consulted Freds videos. The one that was specific to the rear shock service was of great help. I guess the SM doesn't want you to mess with checking the hydraulic oil. So, the first thing I did was to do the old shock motor sound difference test. In Freds video, his shock motor made no sound difference 'till around 5 or 6. He said, in the video that, he'd seen or heard of reports of no resistance sound, 'till around 8, 9, or 10.

Well, I didn't know if mine would have any lag in free spinning to resistance or not but, I thought why not try? So, the first thing that happened was of course, the UP and DOWN switch DIDN'T work because, I'd not used it in years. BAD MOVE! So, some manipulation of that switch and, the memory ones started things working. I brought the level all the way back to ZERO from 25. I then made sure things were dead quiet in the garage. I pushed the UP button and finally it started to rise. 1-2-3.....6.....8....11...13..15 and finally, on 16, it made a sound change to a resistance type sound.

I thought "Wow", that bad? I better do it again, just to make sure. Same thing, all the way to 16 before a difference in sound was detected. NOT GOOD! So, now it's time to apparently do some hydraulic oil adding. Now, the question is, Fred did it while the shock was off the bike. Can I do it WITH the shock ON the bike? Based on some other info, I think I need to remove the right side storage box in order to obtain access to the shock reservoir. Once that's done, I think the hydraulic hose and banjo bolt is right there.
Scott
 

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Fred has available on line instructions for topping up the reservoir. The shock does not need to be removed.
 

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And that is why you are bottoming out. Had to top mine off when I purchased 6 years ago and the last time I checked it was still activating between 0 and 1. Sure didn't like the ride first time we were 2 up, but thanks to this forum I found the fix easy-peasy.:wink2:
 

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Yes, you can leave the shock on the bike and service/fill the actuator. You can remove the right saddlebag mounting bolts and pull the saddlebag out enough to access the actuator without totally removing the saddlebag from the bike. Then set the actuator at zero, remove it, turn it upside down and mark the clocking position of the banjo bolt on the bottom and then remove it, insert a small screwdriver and push the piston all the way down, then top-off the actuator (I use Honda SS7 fork oil) and reinstall the bolt and retest. And be careful not loose any fluid from the hose when you remove it.


If you still notice it doesn't load the motor at zero, you probably still have some air in the system. Cycle it full up and down two more times to get the air into the actuator reservoir, and then repeat the steps above.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Yes, you can leave the shock on the bike and service/fill the actuator. You can remove the right saddlebag mounting bolts and pull the saddlebag out enough to access the actuator without totally removing the saddlebag from the bike. Then set the actuator at zero, remove it, turn it upside down and mark the clocking position of the banjo bolt on the bottom and then remove it, insert a small screwdriver and push the piston all the way down, then top of the actuator and reinstall the bolt and retest. And be careful not loose any fluid from the hose when you remove it.


If you still notice it doesn't load the motor at zero, you probably still have some air in the system. Cycle it full up and down two more times to get the air into the actuator reservoir, and then repeat the steps above.
Outstanding Fred,
Very, very much appreciated. I think I'm even gonna try your little trick of loosening the reservoir from the motor-drive about an 1/8" to pre-load the pre-load. Cover me, I'm going in!
Scott
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Here is what I use.


Hey Fred,
I surely appreciate the advice. I had some 10W Maxima fork oil left over from my fork job so, I just used it. I was gonna use ATF but, found that fork oil so I used it. I did your little trick of keeping the two sections apart by about 1/8" inch and then filled the reservoir. I topped it off as much as possible then, attached the banjo bolt and sealing washers. I then tightened the two halves together. I re-installed it all and me and the wife took the big bike out to dinner last night. We know this town pretty good and know where there's bone jarring ruts, concrete seams, bad pavement etc. that has given us tons of rough ride in the past.

On this ride to dinner last night, the ride was SOOOOOOO MUCH BETTER than it's been for the time we've lived here in Lake Havasu City AZ. All those spots where we'd been jarred before were incredibly smoothed out. They're still there and we do feel them but, not nearly as harsh as before. I'd recommend this procedure to anyone who's got some age on their Wing.
Scott
 

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OP, thanks for bringing this up, and Fred, you, Sir, are awesome. Since I was replacing the rear shock spring and pre-load hose with a new braided line anyway, I pulled the whole works. Cleaned, bled, installed, and cycled everything. The pump starts talking at 1 and the ride is now amazing. Thank you!
 
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Another thing to put on my list to do. Mine starts working at about 11-12.
 

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Fire Up,
Now where does your actuator kick in after the top off. An inquiring mind wants to know. :grin2:
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Fire Up,
Now where does your actuator kick in after the top off. An inquiring mind wants to know. :grin2:
Hey Tex-Ed,
Well, it's hard to say just where the pressure starts to build. I mean, when I check it now, there is NO NOISE difference, from ZERO up. The pump has the same pitch in noise, from the git-go, all the way to 25. I think that, in fact I'm dead sure that, Freds tip on leaving the body assembly about 1/8" or so apart, then fill your system to it's max, THEN tighten the two body sections up, is the reason I have no pitch difference in noise. It's a "pre-load" for the pre-load.
Scott
 
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