Some manufacturers insist that shock absorbers should not be disassembled but replaced as whole parts. Other vendors understand that the springs can be taken off. Disassembling shocks beyond that may void your warranty and cause you injury. The procedures and techniques are similar for all motorcycle shocks for all bikes including dirt bikes, sport bikes, touring models and cruisers. In a nutshell, you compress the shock absorber in a mechanical or hydraulic press and free the spring. In the United States, Progressive Suspension makes a mechanical press specifically to accomplish this job.
- Skill level:
Things you need
- Wooden block
- Mechanical or hydraulic press
- Mechanic's awl
- Bench vice
- Open-end wrench
Clean the shock absorber to be disassembled with solvent and rags.
Place the bottom of the shock absorber on a wooden block in the hydraulic or mechanical press. Ensure the shock is vertical and immobilise the shock.
Lower the ram of the mechanical or hydraulic press until it touches the top, or long eye, of the shock absorber. Slowly compress the top of the shock absorber and the shock spring until the shock absorber retainer ring and keeper plate separate.
Remove the retaining ring with a mechanic's awl. Remove the pressure on the top of the shock and remove the shock from the press.
Separate the spring plate from the damper tube.
Line the jaws of a bench vice with rags. Clamp the long eye in the vice so the shock is upside down.
Loosen the long eye nut with an open-end wrench. Remove the long eye nut and the spring plate.
Tips and warnings
- The shock absorber must be vertical and secure before lowering the hydraulic or mechanical ram.
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