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Ridin' with the King
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
How much air pressure do you run in your stock rear air shocks? I am running 15 solo and 20 two-up and I bottom over moderate bumps two-up. Thinking of going to 30-35 for two up but wanted to know what everybody else was running.
 

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frankencat said:
How much air pressure do you run in your stock rear air shocks? I am running 15 solo and 20 two-up and I bottom over moderate bumps two-up. Thinking of going to 30-35 for two up but wanted to know what everybody else was running.
The V-Twin Forum "info" section is not working at this time so I don't know hat bike you have. I always had a good quality ride just running the air pressures that HD recommended in the Owner's Manual. For my 1992 FLT that was 0 - solo, and 5 to 10 with passenger and luggage.

I used a HD "syringe" type air pump. I also adjusted the schrader valve so that it JUST came open when the air pump was fully screwed on to the stem. Initially, I had a problem with the schrader valve being held open as the pump hose was being unscrewed from the shock. This resulted in the shock air pressure dropping to zero.

Easiest way to tell if the shock's schrader valve is adjusted properly is to:
1 - attached the pump
2 - pressurize the shock to 10-15 psi
3 - remove the pump completely, then
4 - reattach the pump

If the shock air pressure remains at the psi that you just loaded, the the schrader valve is properly adjusted. If the air pressure is markedly less than you just loaded (like zero), then the air pressure may be dropping as you are unscrewing the pump.

If that's the case, then adjust the schrader valve so that it lies further into the valve stem. You may have to spend some time "tweaking" the position, but you want the schrader valve to JUST open up when the pump is fully screwed on to the valve stem. That way the schrader valve will FULLY CLOSE as-soon-as you BEGIN to disengage the air pump hardware. Do this and the shocks will have the air pressure you intended.

What is the solo ride like with zero pressure in the air shock?
 

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I run 10 lbs in the back whether 1 or 2 up. Go to 15 when I pull the trailer. Never had a bottom out problem in 101,000+ miles. BUT I do try to slow down when crossing railroad tracks, speed bumps, etc.

Under what conditions do you bottom out? I've also had a few guys I know that had a "bottoming out" problem and went to replacement shocks (non-air).
 

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Ridin' with the King
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Well I guess I left out some important info, I was really tired when I posted. Anyway, I have a '05 RK with the stock air shocks lowered 1" in the rear with the solow kit. I just installed a detaqchable backrest for two-up riding and had to move the air valve which requires you to disconnect the the air hose and re-route it. I didn't have any problem with that and when I tested the system it held air. We were going on a run so I pumped it to 20lbs and off we went. I am thinking it may be leaking slowly because last night I took my daughter out for a ride (wife rode her own) and we were bottoming out over minor whoop-dees as in tire hitting fender. Although I ride solo 99% of the time I was just not expecting that. I think I need to check today and see if it's still holding air.
 

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natural-born world-shaker
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Might be a good idea to check for leaks. I have an 04 King Custom with stock shocks, ride with the same pressures you list and it's stiff but doesn't bottom out. good luck
 

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I'd suspect whatever did the lowering for the stock shocks. Never been a fan of those type of changes.
 

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I've never bottomed out, and had 15 psi in 2003, haven't checked since then, but like I said, I've never bottomed out.
 

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I have an 04 road king custom. I am a big guy 6'3" 275lbs and my wife is not a fly weight either. solo I run around 20 or 25 psi two up 30 or 35 works for me.
 

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when i had the air shock i was 15-20 solo and 25 2 up.It didn't work all that bad for me. I have since moved on to progressives and like 04flhtc will not look back......
 

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fijfi said:
Not sure if this funny or scary? :boxin:

Hope you check your oil more often. :D
Oh yeah, check the tire pressure every couple of months, oil every couple of weeks, but the shocks? Probably flat as pancakes by now, but they still seem to work o.k.
 

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stupid follow question

Funny, I just read in my manual last night that I should be about 10-15lbs solo, still within range if I put my lightweight honey on the back. ( may run a little more, cuz my shocks are lowered)

I do have a question tho: Does adding pressure raise the shocks any? (Coming from a vertically challenged guy who needs every millimeter he can get).
 

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I have the stock shocks, but the bike had a 1" rear lowering kit put on it; so it needs higher pressures to prevent bottoming out.

I run 15 solo and 18 two up in the fronts

Rears I run 30-35 when riding solo, 40 when riding two up locally, and 45-50 when fully loaded down and two up riding on tour.
 

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Ridin' with the King
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Thanks guys. I don't have any trouble when riding solo and I usually run 15-20 lbs. It's only when riding two-up. I haven't had a chance to check my pressure again, been down with a nasty cold for the past few days and have been driving the truck to work.
 

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Ridin' with the King
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Well I lost about 5 lbs of pressure in a week so I definitely seem to have a leak. The location of the air valve after the install of the detachable hardware really blows. I am going to make up a new bracket and put that thing where it's useful. I'll deal with the leakage at that time. Until then, time to ride!
 

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I switched my 2003 FLSTC (Hertiage Classic) to Progressive Suspensions AIR TAILS for Soft tails-high pressure low volume set up-adjustable from 60-150 PSI, made an improvement in ride-still not as smooth as a road king
 
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