Air in Front Shocks


Information and questions on GL1500 Goldwings (1988-2000)
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demac1763
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1991 gl1500 aspencade 29k miles black 10 year anniversary edition number 000649 (sold)

Air in Front Shocks

Postby demac1763 » Sun Feb 14, 2016 5:20 pm



My 99 SE I noticed has air front shocks. I looked in the book and it says it takes 0-6 lbs. Mine had 0. I shot a little bit in with my compressor,and realized that wasn't the thing to do,as the whole front end picked up, So I let it out. My question is do I need a bicycle pump or hand pump of some kind to put a little air in the shocks? or do I just leave 0 pressure in both of them.


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flyinrob
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Re: Air in Front Shocks

Postby flyinrob » Sun Feb 14, 2016 7:21 pm

Yes, you should use some sort of bicycle pump for the front forks. It is my understanding that you need a low gentle pressure to add air. I have a 96 Aspy and I actually don't run any air in the front forks. I have just drained and refilled the front forks with 15wt Belray fork oil, putting in the required quantity for each fork and the ride seems just fine to me. As far as I know I have stock springs.

Rob

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NVSB4
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Re: Air in Front Shocks

Postby NVSB4 » Sun Feb 14, 2016 8:14 pm

You've really got to be careful with adding air to the front shocks.
By adding with a compressor you may have blown the seal.
I would remove as much air as possible very soon.

I bought one of these and it works very will for the front shocks.
You can find them cheaper sometimes on eBay or Amazon.
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demac1763
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1991 gl1500 aspencade 29k miles black 10 year anniversary edition number 000649 (sold)

Re: Air in Front Shocks

Postby demac1763 » Sun Feb 14, 2016 8:38 pm

I did remove the air immediately, and haven't seen any leaks, I hope I didn't do any damage. I think I will order one of those pumps, it looks like a good investment. Thanks very much..
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Bluewaterhooker0
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Re: Air in Front Shocks

Postby Bluewaterhooker0 » Mon Feb 15, 2016 1:34 am

demac1763 wrote:My 99 SE I noticed has air front shocks. I looked in the book and it says it takes 0-6 lbs. Mine had 0. I shot a little bit in with my compressor,and realized that wasn't the thing to do,as the whole front end picked up, So I let it out. My question is do I need a bicycle pump or hand pump of some kind to put a little air in the shocks? or do I just leave 0 pressure in both of them.


I have a '97, with what I believe are OEM springs. I use my compressor, but VERY carefully adjust the compressor regulator to achieve the desired pressure, then verify and adjust the pressure to 10psi, with a low scaled pressure gauge (gauge measures 0-20psi). I know, it's more than recommended, but has caused me no issues in the 2.5 years it has been like that. I did not like the nose diving effect on braking that was present without the added air pressure. It's like night and day on my bike. I also change the shock oil regularly with a Honda 10W fork oil. SS-8 is the Honda number, I believe. I'm a heavy (fat) guy, and your situation may vary. But, you can always adjust the pressure, or no pressure at all, after you play with it. A hand pump might, or might not be easier, as the air volume in those shocks is minimal. So, the little bit that escapes when you take off the pump, or even take a gauge reading, can change the pressure measurably. That's why I stick with the compressor, pump it to 12-15psi, and gauge adjust it to 10psi. It's a tight space to access and make your connections to the Schrader valve.

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demac1763
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Motorcycle: 1999 GL1500 SE 50th anniversary Pearl Green 44K Miles

1991 gl1500 aspencade 29k miles black 10 year anniversary edition number 000649 (sold)

Re: Air in Front Shocks

Postby demac1763 » Mon Feb 15, 2016 2:17 am

Thank you very much for that information, I will try that on my compressor.
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Bluewaterhooker0
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Re: Air in Front Shocks

Postby Bluewaterhooker0 » Mon Feb 15, 2016 4:40 am

BTW
You do all of this with the bike on the center stand, so there is no positive pressure in the forks from compressed springs.

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demac1763
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1991 gl1500 aspencade 29k miles black 10 year anniversary edition number 000649 (sold)

Re: Air in Front Shocks

Postby demac1763 » Mon Feb 15, 2016 11:13 pm

it worked, I got the right amount of pressure in both shocks thanks to your advice, this site is great, and thank you bluewaterhooker0 for telling me how to do it with what I already had :D
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Re: Air in Front Shocks

Postby WingAdmin » Wed Feb 17, 2016 12:42 pm

If your springs are worn out and sagging, trying to compensate for it by increasing air pressure might work, until you hit one big bump and end up blowing out your seals.

The best thing to do really is replace the springs - the Progressive springs are quite a bit firmer, and require no air pressure at all. Some find them a bit too firm, I like the improvement in ride and handling they give.

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Dwight_n_Sue
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Re: Air in Front Shocks

Postby Dwight_n_Sue » Mon Mar 14, 2016 9:49 pm

I went down to my local bicycle shop and bout a small hand pump that max's at 10 psi. It fits in the trunk and is there for the once a year I might need it on our '96 SE.

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tfdeputydawg
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Re: Air in Front Shocks

Postby tfdeputydawg » Tue Mar 15, 2016 3:47 am

Bluewaterhooker0 wrote:BTW
You do all of this with the bike on the center stand, so there is no positive pressure in the forks from compressed springs.

:?: :?: Bike on center stand :!: :!: Isn't the front wheel still on the ground :?: :?:
For the OP, Had air forks on my 2000SE. Tried various amounts of air over time for solo and with passenger. Ended up going 0 air. Only thing air did was make the front suspension harsh :roll:
Could be why air forks never made it to the 1800's :D

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Bluewaterhooker0
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Re: Air in Front Shocks

Postby Bluewaterhooker0 » Wed Mar 16, 2016 12:01 am

tfdeputydawg wrote:
Bluewaterhooker0 wrote:BTW
You do all of this with the bike on the center stand, so there is no positive pressure in the forks from compressed springs.

:?: :?: Bike on center stand :!: :!: Isn't the front wheel still on the ground :?: :?:
For the OP, Had air forks on my 2000SE. Tried various amounts of air over time for solo and with passenger. Ended up going 0 air. Only thing air did was make the front suspension harsh :roll:
Could be why air forks never made it to the 1800's :D


From my experience, the pressure on the front forks is negligible when on the center stand. My front forks suffer no compression while on the center stand. It's worked fine for me. I suppose I could install some progressive springs to satisfy my need for the air pressure I run, but it runs so well when set up the way I have it, I hate to mess with success. Maybe some day I'll see the need. I'm a 'rather big, beefy' guy, and I'm sure the pressure required for individual riders would vary quite a bit, from maxed out to 0, depending on driver weight. My front suspension is still smooth as silk with the 10 psi that I run.




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