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  1. #21
    Senior Member K9F's Avatar
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    Softail shocks are fine for Brit roads I suspect strongly that the issue is the fact they've not been set up correctly for your rear fender. It could also be the fact they may be old and tired in which case they will need replacing. Your fender is not stock as it has no struts from what I can see.

    Pictured below is a fender bump stop with a number of shims. These are usually supplied with most quality after market fenders to prevent the exact issue you are suffering with. There is no guarantee after market shocks are going to cope either dependent on how close your fender sits to the tyre. There are realistically only two 100% guaranteed solutions 1. Fit bump stops. 2. Go for an air ride system where the rebound, damping and height are fully adjustable. Arnotts, Shotgun and Thunderbike are great options for air ride. The first option is your cheapest and the second depends on how deep your pockets are but I suspect you may not need to replace your shocks at all.

    Last edited by K9F; 07-18-2018 at 07:48 PM.

    IF YOU GO THROUGH LIFE WITH YOUR HEAD IN THE SAND.....ALL PEOPLE WILL SEE IS AN ARSE!!
    TREAT EVERY DAY AS YOUR LAST.....ONE DAY YOU WILL BE RIGHT!!

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    Mannyroad (07-18-2018)

  3. #22
    Member Mannyroad's Avatar
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    Thanks for your comments K9F. Can't quite get my head around what I'm looking at in the pic. Need to get a better understanding on how they fit on the bike.

    What seems to be happening with my bike is that the swing arm raises and hits the side of the deep walled fender because there is only about an inch of clearance. The fender is only fastened to the bike by two bolts near the front and I think if the tyre was slamming into the underside of the fender it would perhaps have done real damage to it, but that's not the case. It does feel like the softail bottoms out against something hard, converting it immediately into a 'hardtail'.

    It was the S&S mechanic that believed it was the swingarm hitting the fender at the front end, but thinking about it, I would think that for an inch of travel to be used up at the front would mean the centre of the wheel would have to move upwards a looong way and there isn't that much room between tyre and fender. Hmmm.... food for thought.

  4. #23
    Member Mannyroad's Avatar
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    Wow! Just checked out the Arnotts stuff. One word: expensive solution. Great I'm sure, but I'd have to be damned sure I definitely needed the system before investing. will have to check out the bump stop solution more.

  5. #24
    Senior Member K9F's Avatar
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    I have just bought the Shotgun system. Whereas the Arnotts and Thunderbike are undoubtedly good Shotgun offer a lifetime warranty over the competition's two year warranty and they have been in the game for over 30 years. It could be from your description that you already have the bump stops fitted? If you have you will need to live with it or buy an air ride system, progressive shocks will still be no good as they too travel more than a paltry inch and you will still need to fit bump stops. You need to get down and dirty and have a look underneath the bike at the two FORWARD piston mounting points under the frame and see if there is anything remotely like the picture I posted above mounted on the cross member that the shocks pass through alternatively they can also be fitted behind the seat cross member at the upper end, the ones above are for the upper seat cross member. An inch of free travel without bump stops is nowhere enough on standard shocks without stops. In such a setup you WILL undoubtedly be grounding out against the fender. Buying progressive with only an inch of travel available is a total waste of time and money IMHO. I am just going down exactly the same path with an after market close hugging fender (bump stops were provided as seen above but will not be needed hopefully) and have done a great deal of research and had detailed discussions with Moore Speed Racing, Thunderbike and Shotgun Shocks in the USA to make sure I have the right setup and backup if needed.

    Fender I am fitting below, with the air ride system you can raise and lower the bike by about 4" and be able to adjust the rebound and damping so that the fender can be lowered as far as you wish without bottoming out on the fender itself but the closer the fender to the tyre the harsher the ride, close it would akin to a hardtail with virtually no damping permissible.



    *EDIT* Just noticed your avatar. Ironically I too have a KTM to scratch the itches the Harley fails to reach but mine is the 390!

    The picture below should give you the exact location of the upper type bump stops. Not ideal but it is a photo of my fender fitting instructions.

    Last edited by K9F; 07-19-2018 at 05:09 PM.

    IF YOU GO THROUGH LIFE WITH YOUR HEAD IN THE SAND.....ALL PEOPLE WILL SEE IS AN ARSE!!
    TREAT EVERY DAY AS YOUR LAST.....ONE DAY YOU WILL BE RIGHT!!

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    Mannyroad (07-20-2018)

  7. #25
    Member Mannyroad's Avatar
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    Many thanks indeed KPF for your posts. Now I see how the bump stop works. I haven't checked yet, because the bike is at the S&S garage for a couple of minor jobs and an MOT, but I can't say I've seen anything remotely resembling any bump stops and tbh I'm guessing that with the stops fitted any bottoming out would result in a soft feel to the contact, not hard like I'm experiencing.

    I've just contacted the S&S guy to see how the bike is coming along and he's dropped a real bombshell on me. He says I need to come in for a chat because he says the bike is a complete mess. He won't explain what he means just says he has a list of things as long as his arm and he'd prefer to discuss. Bit of a shocker for sure because the bike rode over to his garage ok, felt no issues while riding other than rear suspension bottoming out. My checks over the bike before jumping on and riding it found a few minor issues that wanted putting right but nothing really jumped out at me. The motor seems to run very smoothly, as does the gearbox, with just a bit of noise coming from the open drive set up, sort of like clutch plate noise in neutral which I'd expect in an open drive, having one on my other bike. So, will have to wait till tomorrow to find out what the big issues are. Reckon I might be looking at a baad weekend ahead

  8. #26
    Senior Member K9F's Avatar
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    No worries, I think your bank account maybe about to be raided!
    Last edited by K9F; 07-20-2018 at 10:35 PM.

    IF YOU GO THROUGH LIFE WITH YOUR HEAD IN THE SAND.....ALL PEOPLE WILL SEE IS AN ARSE!!
    TREAT EVERY DAY AS YOUR LAST.....ONE DAY YOU WILL BE RIGHT!!

  9. #27
    Member Mannyroad's Avatar
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    Well, all was not as bad as I thought. Yes, he (the mechanic) had a long list of things that needed sorting with the bike, but most of them were things like bolts that had worked loose or missing that he replaced. Like WTF!! Why sh*t me up over that sort of thing? Anyway, there were a couple of BIG items that will need sorting. First, he reckons the rear shocks are goosed, so new ones it will have to be. He stocks Progressive Suspension 422 heavy duty shocks at £450 plus VAT and he reckons they are what I need as they handle double the loading of the standard shocks.

    The other thing is the rear wheel, which he says is really too wide. There is only a small amount of clearance bewteen the tyre and the swingarm on the left side (about 3mm). And it's worse on the right side in that the tyre almost touches the inside of the wall of the fender and is nearly rubbing on the wiring for the offside indicator. So he reckons that is a defo MOT fail. What is really needed is a 240/40 rear tyre rather than the 250 that is on. But he thinks it is a 9" rim and that the 240 won't go on a 9" rim. The thing is though, I checked this out on the web and Ridewright Wheels reckon a 240/40 will be ok on an 8" - 9" rim. Am hoping this is right because to rebuild the wheel with an 8.5" rim isn't so cheap.

    So, it's likely to be costing me £1000-1500 depending on if I need a new rim. Not cheap.

    By the way K9F, I love the rear fender you're building; good profile. And the 390 is a good machine too; it's the bike I want my missus to get when she does her A2. have to lower it mind as she can't reach the floor as standard.

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    bluenose-1956 (07-23-2018)

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