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Softail Models Standard, Custom, Night Train, Deuce, Springer, Heritage, Fatboy, Deluxe, Rocker and Cross Bones.

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Old 05-20-2009, 03:19 PM
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klf33 klf33 is offline
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Default Rear Suspension.. what is your best upgrade ?

Hi Guys,
I think it is time my bike gets a new rear suspension,
It is time I invest in 'performance mod' LOL.

What is your best choice, no air rides for me , too expensive .

I will also like to keep my rear lowered.

I appreciate the input.

Regards
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2001 FXST , Andrews 37, SE Hydr kit, Doherty PPACC, SE slipons, Flanders+2" buckhorns, RSD risers ,Progressive low -2" Ricor Intiminators front and ShotGun back, ProOne triple trees, TimeWarp Paint, Black lowers/rims/hubs, FabKevin brake Caliber kit, KD coil reloc, wrapped pipes .. list goes on..
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Old 05-20-2009, 03:35 PM
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I bought Harley's lowering shocks off another member here. They have longer bolts and again, are adjustable. This is important because when I first had them installed on my '08 NT, they had set the pre-load too soft and the bike bottomed out over almost every bump. NOT good for the bike. So I had them click the pre-load three clicks firmer and while the ride isn't what I'd call "supple", it's MUCH better and the bike is, I would imagine, happier.

Oh, and I went 2" down in the rear. NO handling issues at all.
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Old 05-20-2009, 05:25 PM
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Chazmanian Chazmanian is offline
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Those Harley shocks Kelly has or a set of Ultima's or 422's from progressive.

I do have to agree to disagree with Kelly as there are inherent handling issues especially if you ride the bike in a.."Spirited" fashion?

The bike will understeer or feel as if it dosent want to lay down into the corners and carve as its original design intended. A Softail with 21" front tire and 32 dgrees of rake isnt the best handling bike through the curves to start with and the inherent shortcomings of the chasis are greatly amplified to the negative by lowering the rear a full 2" or more without addressing the ride height of the front end.

I have ridden mine in all 3 forms. Stock, Rear slammed with front stock, both front and rear lowered equally. The bike didnt not ride and it wasnt some big scray deal with just the **** lowered but it cornered like chit.

Front and rear lowered equally not only looks kinda cool but regains the bikes ability to lay down into a curve and not want to pull itself wide. The front end tracks as designed and makes offramps, twisty roads, canyon carving a much more enjoyable affair on a bike that has an inherently poor design for any spirited cornering. I hammer mine up nasty twisty colorado mountain roads...It works pretty good considering. Scraping is an issue and if you drop the front you will need a shorter kickstand or a bit of forethought when parking yer' bike!!
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Old 05-20-2009, 07:20 PM
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Chazmanian

I don't necessarily disagree with you and your analysis of the geometry of the bike and how lowering the rear only effects handling is spot on. However, my style of riding is not overly aggressive, so I tend to not really feel those pronounced effects.
The Night Train is not known for it's corner-carving ability to begin with- it wasn't designed that way. A 21" front with a 32 degree rake and an 18" rear 200mm tire isn't going to make for LeMans-style handling obviously. But I bought my NT with a VERY specific foresight into how I wanted it to look/perform. And it's getting there.

Needless to say, I probably will wind up getting the Progressive front lowering springs at some point...
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Old 05-20-2009, 07:45 PM
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I'll chime in here. I read your statement and read hundreds of posts regarding different suspension setups over the years here on the site. I was happy with my stock suspension until I wanted to slam the bike. Yes, I raided the kids college fund for an air ride. I read too many things about people bottoming out and not being comfortable on lowering bolts or shocks.

As I have learned over the years with motorcycle mods, I get what I really want first. If I do not I always end up getting later regardless of the price. That being said, I have NOT ridden on a bike with the lowering bolts installed so I offer no feedback on that.

Someone else brought up the point that your bike is not made to carve canyons anyway. That being said I believe a quality suspension upgrade will still drastically affect the handling/ride of your bike. I have owned numerous bikes and found that suspensions tires are two of the biggest factors in ride quality available. It always makes me wonder why stock suspension sucks.

Food for thought. Good luck on whatever you choose.
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Old 05-20-2009, 08:16 PM
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I lowered my bike 12 inches and let all of the air out of the tires.
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Old 05-20-2009, 08:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JY Kelly View Post
I probably will wind up getting the Progressive front lowering springs at some point...
Well if you do they arent as easy an install as the whole drop in marketing pitch claims them to be!!

Me and a buddy pretty much tore the entire front end apart to get the kit in. It kinda sucked actually!

I ended up doing it twice no less as the first try was 1.5" and I'll be dammed if the sumbitch didnt even look lowered a bit.

On a good note we had a jug of heavy fork oil and replaced the light thin stuff with the uber heavy crap on the 2nd go round and the fork now feels way better than stock and absorbs road trash better and dosent deflect as badly on road cracks and ridges.

I was pretty choppered out a few months ago.
Click the image to open in full size.

This is 1.5"
Click the image to open in full size.

And this is the full monty from the progressive kit or 2".
Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 05-20-2009, 08:44 PM
ElSupremo ElSupremo is offline
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I've got the Ultima's on the rear of mine, and I like the way it rides, even lowered all the way. For the money they're a pretty good deal, imo.

That being said, I'm planning on going to an air system this next winter.
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Old 05-20-2009, 08:46 PM
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Chaz

You know, I carefully studied the PDF file on Progressive's website. I very quickly realized that that whole "Just take the fork bolts off and drop the springs in- VOILA!" thing was horses**t. It clearly states that (at least for Softails) there is MUCH more involved. Too bad- I really wanted to give it a shot on my own in my late father-in-law's well-equipped workshop.
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Old 05-20-2009, 08:46 PM
 
 
 
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