When to replace shocks

Discussion in 'Softail Models' started by BikeSAG, Sep 19, 2012.

  1. BikeSAG

    BikeSAG Active Member

    Ok, my Heritage is nearing 45000 miles with original shocks. I have no noticable reason to change them. Are there signs that they need to be changed like one might experience with a cage? No cupping or abnormal tire wear. So I'm thinking about going ahead with new ones during my winter service (self-service). Does anyone have experience with or recommend any other brands other than HD original replacement parts?

    Thanks for the feedback in advance.
  2. Alter

    Alter Member

    I'm heading down that shock road soon. My 04 Heritage shocks creaked getting on and off the bike. Took it to my indy who said that they were factory set to the softest setting and have ceased, so he removed them unceased them and set them to the firmest setting. The bike rode great with 2 up (unlike before we were scraping over every little mogul on the road) Now the creak is back so going to have to save my pennies cause the factory harley shocks are 4 beans a pair and the others just go up from there.
  3. HDDon

    HDDon Experienced Member Contributor Retired Moderators

    I know they are more "beans" but I have found that the Progressive shocks last longer than my orig. HD OEM. They are also rebuildable.
  4. TQuentin1

    TQuentin1 Well-Known Member Staff Member Moderator

    I have just replaced the air shocks on the rear, and the front forks. The bike had approx. 92,500 on it when I did that (8/29/12).

    For about the last 10,000 miles I have been noticing the rear end bottoming out even when riding solo with 25 psi in the air shocks. Tried changing out the fluid in the shocks a couple of times, and the stuff coming out always had little elastomer bits in it!! So I finally decided it was time.

    The demise of my rear shocks was my fault. I did not change the fluid in them every year, and I think that should be the SOP. So with the new ones, I will do that. Same with the new front forks.

  5. Bodeen

    Bodeen Well-Known Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

    TQ, did you go back with oem shocks? Just curious, others may be as well.
  6. TQuentin1

    TQuentin1 Well-Known Member Staff Member Moderator

    Yes I did. And the lowering kit. The bike is riding like new now. Rear end DOES NOT bottom out even with my daughter (130#) riding with me and no extra air in the shocks. These were the low profile air shocks (lowers the back of the bike about an inch, and the front kit the same).