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Road King Rear suspension opinions

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Old 12-27-2011, 11:12 AM
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Default Road King Rear suspension opinions

I won't bore everyone with a long story. Basically took a nice long ride yesterday with my uncle who rented a 2012 Heritage. We switched bikes for a bit and the ride on the Heritage was a ton better than mine in terms of rear suspension. I have never put new shocks in the rear but am thinking I need to. I don't ride 2 up. Just looking for shock ideas that will give me a nice soft ride. I am pretty sure the stock shocks are junk by now. Thanks
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Old 12-27-2011, 12:06 PM
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Check these out, much cheaper than alot of the brand name options. And I thought I read or heard somewhere that these are in fact made by Progressive, might be wrong. Still beats 500-600 bucks tho in my mind. Also theres threads on here about putting together a very affordable air-ride system, using a small compressor, and air schocks that are actually inteded for use on Corvettes from the mid to late 70s I think. Check for a recent thread about a budget air ride setup. Im still just running stockers with a 1" drop block, if I decide to upgrade, I think Ill be goin with these J&P ones.
http://www.jpcycles.com/product/700-251
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Old 12-27-2011, 12:38 PM
Northwoodz Northwoodz is offline
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Put the Ohlin's on mine. Best thing I did to my bike!
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Old 12-27-2011, 12:55 PM
mkguitar mkguitar is offline
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have you ever adjusted the air pressure in the shocks?

I have had very good results with the stock shocks on a number of Harleys, adjusting pressure to match the load or the road is a must

I know there are great aftermarket shocks- but on one of my bikes long ago, I shelled out for a big aftermarket name and it was a step backwards- a harsh 'sport ride' that didn't work so well for long days of touring, for that I want the floaty cadillac ride

Mike

Last edited by mkguitar; 12-27-2011 at 01:53 PM.
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Old 12-27-2011, 12:58 PM
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The shocks on my 05 King are junk. Recently talked to Progressive, and Frank in customer service said:

412 - Good
430 - Better
440 - Best

...for me at 185 pounds. After some due diligence, I ordered the 440's from Phat Performance Parts. Very reasonably prices ($450ish), and the cool thing is that if bought before the end of the year, to send the reciept into Progressive also gets the buyer a free set of drop in springs for the front forks. The shocks arrive today, and I'll have them on this evening. If I have an opprtunity to ride it this evening, I'd be happy to comment tomorrow on the difference. Anything aftermarket has GOT to be an improvement over the stock air shocks, I'm thinking.
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Old 12-27-2011, 01:01 PM
AlanStansbery AlanStansbery is offline
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I have an 04 Road King Custom. It had the 1" shorter air-shocks. They didn't ride very well. I experimented with air pressure, but couldn't get to a place where they gave me a comfortable ride. I bought after market shocks, and I'm a lot happier. I recommend you look around, weigh price against the kind of riding you do and what you need.

Alan
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Old 12-27-2011, 01:04 PM
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Don't go cheap , you will regret it , I've ridden Harley's for 30+ years and never upgraded the suspension , I accepted the ride as the way it just was , on my last bike I won a set of Progressives 940s so I installed them and the monotubes up front , what a world of difference , had I known how it changed my bike I would have upgraded all my previous bikes , on my 2011 I now knew suspension was on my must do list so I went with Ohlins #3-#3 to see how they were and was amazed at how much better they were than the Progressives , I will never own a bike again without the Ohlins upgrade , if you enjoy riding you will love a great suspension
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Old 12-27-2011, 01:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlanStansbery View Post
I have an 04 Road King Custom. It had the 1" shorter air-shocks. They didn't ride very well. I experimented with air pressure, but couldn't get to a place where they gave me a comfortable ride. I bought after market shocks, and I'm a lot happier. I recommend you look around, weigh price against the kind of riding you do and what you need.

Alan
My 05 King is a Custom with 12" shocks also, and my experience with the stock air shocks was exactly like yours, Alan.

I know that Ohlin's are the pinnacle, but I simply couldn't justify that kind of expense. I'm hoping, and believing that the Progressive shocks will be a major improvement, though maybe not the pinnacle of choices. That said, if the OP can afford and justify the expense, my reading would suggest that those are about as good as it gets for aftermarket shocks.

Last edited by gipper; 12-27-2011 at 01:36 PM.
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Old 12-27-2011, 01:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KennyMay View Post
Check these out, much cheaper than alot of the brand name options. And I thought I read or heard somewhere that these are in fact made by Progressive, might be wrong. Still beats 500-600 bucks tho in my mind. Also theres threads on here about putting together a very affordable air-ride system, using a small compressor, and air schocks that are actually inteded for use on Corvettes from the mid to late 70s I think. Check for a recent thread about a budget air ride setup. Im still just running stockers with a 1" drop block, if I decide to upgrade, I think Ill be goin with these J&P ones.
http://www.jpcycles.com/product/700-251
I would try changing the shock oil to 10w before replacing them, its cheep, easy and it might make a big difference?
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Old 12-27-2011, 01:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tj316 View Post
Don't go cheap , you will regret it , I've ridden Harley's for 30+ years and never upgraded the suspension , I accepted the ride as the way it just was , on my last bike I won a set of Progressives 940s so I installed them and the monotubes up front , what a world of difference , had I known how it changed my bike I would have upgraded all my previous bikes , on my 2011 I now knew suspension was on my must do list so I went with Ohlins #3-#3 to see how they were and was amazed at how much better they were than the Progressives , I will never own a bike again without the Ohlins upgrade , if you enjoy riding you will love a great suspension
Tj, got any info on which Ohlins you went with, part# maybe a pic or two for those of us still on the fence about which shock to go with?
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