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Discussion Starter #1
Working on some mods to the rear of my bike I noticed one of the air lines to the rear shocks was routed poorly. So poorly, it could easily started rubbing the rear tire so I re-routed it. I had to disconnect it from the shock which dumped all the air in both shocks and re-connect, no big deal. Once, I finished doing the mods I tried to re-inflate the shocks with the little hand pump from HD. I've used the pump to add, or adjust air in the shocks before but adding, or dropping 5lbs here, or there is a lot different than starting from empty.

I pumped that little pump 50 to a hundred times and never built any pressure on the gauge. I think I need to hit it with the compressor to initially put a volume of air in so everything seals, like setting the bead on a tire, then finish it off with the pump. Does this sound right? I have checked all of the connections and they seem good and I can't hear any air trying to leak but the pump only puts out a puff the size of a fly fart. It probably took 20 pumps to get enough air in the tank for the seat to start registering pressure.

Any advice on inflating the shocks from empty would be appreciated. Thanks
 

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DO NOT use your compressor on those fittings. The volume of air required for the shocks is very small. I would bet that you are not getting any air past the schrader valve. Those valves on HD's suspension fittings are notorious for being difficult to engage. If you have a valve stem tool, try backing the stem out very slightly to bring the pin up higher and see if it engages then.

You could try a little soapy water on the fittings to look for bubbles rather than attempting to hear a leak.

You might also try using the pump on something else like a bicycle tire just to eliminate the pump as the problem.
 

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G is correct, I had similar issues after a disconnect and reinstall. It was my airline not in correctly. PITA little gremlin. It physically looked correct but was not.

I love the RK but have learned to frown at the air shock set up on them.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks GMAN and TWOOD, I have read warnings against using a compressor which is why I didn't last night. I do plan on doing the soapy water test on all connections tonight. I just ran out of energy last night when I had everything together around 8:30 and decided to call it a night.

I'll disconnect and see if I'm getting air through the Schrader valve, it kind of had my attention last night but I had been in the garage all day and was not ready to start chasing another issue. I kind of wanted to just be done and back on the road if you know what I mean.

Thanks Again for your replies, I mainly wanted to be sure I wasn't wasting my time with the small air pump and you two have me convinced to just keep looking for the leak. The pump is working by the way as it aired up my seat just fine.
 

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The small air pump should be sufficient to do the job with just a few strokes. You have a leak somewhere or the schjrader valve is not connected correctly.
Incidentally. I use a Air compressor but I crank the max pressure down to 25 psi so it will not blow the seals.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
A little soapy water and a few pumps found the leaky connection. The air line felt solid when I reinstalled it but it took a few tries to get it just right and stop the bubbles. And the little pump worked just fine. Thanks again for your replies.
 

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You can get very fine control and the piston is small so not a lot of volume. However; my old analog one recently stopped pumping past 30psi, I need to figure out why or buy the new digital one. Don't let them run too long or you can melt the piston or seals, yes it is probably a plastic piston in there. Might pull mine apart this weekend to see what failed, hoping the hose just has a break in it.
 
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