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How To Install an American Suspension Springer

Discussion in 'How-To' started by alhall88, Jul 10, 2007.

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  1. alhall88

    alhall88 UAW

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    If you've read the front end removal thread then you know where you stand. So my decision was to go with the dragon springer (D-66) from american suspension. Here are some key points for you to think of. First because you have less than 40 deg of rake in your big dog (no matter what model) the recomendation from them will be that you will have to go with 0 deg trees and also a 0 offset as well. I'm not going to get into a debate as to why but if want your bike to have the same trail as before then due to the rocker offset this is the way you SHOULD go. Now this will pose 2 new problems for you first you will have to shorten your turn stops, otherwise your trees will hit the tank. And second you will need at least a 1/2 spacer under your handlebars for your speedo to clear your tank. Shortening the turn stops did not affect the riding at all it only comes into play when you are trying to park. So if these issues don't scare you then lets move on.Also if you read my last post on the removal you will also realize that you will have to install a new brake caliper as well.
     
  2. alhall88

    alhall88 UAW

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    So you make a couple calls, send out a bunch of money and in a couple days this comes in the mail.
    [​IMG]
     
  3. Raywood

    Raywood The Pirate
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    Al, is there another website that has some info on this fork? The American Suspension site sucks. I do like that springer you have so was looking for some more info on it.
    Back in the 80's I had a Paughco springer on my HD but I hated it. Seems the new ones are much better with damping suspension that the paughco didn't have.

    Thanks,
    Ray
     
  4. alhall88

    alhall88 UAW

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    Allright now remember that I told you to record the stock height of your frame somewhere, this is where you want to position it now. In my case the measurement I duplicated was 36-1/4 from the ground to the underside of the inside edge of the bottom of the neck.Now first I install my fork stops, you will notice that I had to slightly open the slot in order to accomodate 2 set screw that I installed to stop the trees from hitting the tank. This is where a mock up pays off.
    [​IMG]
     
  5. alhall88

    alhall88 UAW

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    Here's another issue I had that I will try to explain. When I fit the top and bottom trees because of the 0 offset the handle bar spacers and bushings interfered with the outer diameter of the top neck bearing race. So what I did was to put the 2 pc nylon bushings on the lathe and slightly shorten the over all length so that the bottom aluminum spacer that holds the bushing in place is slightly recessed into the lower tree.
    [​IMG]
     
  6. alhall88

    alhall88 UAW

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    So at this time we can assemble the upper and lower trees. They go together the same as the stock setup. Don't forget to use a good synthetic grease on the bearings.
    [​IMG]
     
  7. alhall88

    alhall88 UAW

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  8. alhall88

    alhall88 UAW

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  9. alhall88

    alhall88 UAW

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    OK now we must determine the length of the main legs. With our frame sitting at the proper height we thread on the bottom clevis and insert the main legs in the trees and lightly tighten the pinch bolts.
    [​IMG]
     
  10. alhall88

    alhall88 UAW

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    American Suspension will calculate how far over your forks should be then to cover there ass will ship them long so you have to cut them to length. With at least one fork tube in get your front wheel and set it up against the fork leg. What you need is to strike a line at the center of the axle onto the fork leg itself. Then the optimum set point will be so that the axle center point is 3/4 above the pivot point on the main leg. Then using a pipe cutter cut each of the legs off at the top (the bottom has internal threads that must remain.
    [​IMG]
     
  11. alhall88

    alhall88 UAW

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  12. alhall88

    alhall88 UAW

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    Now I have the main legs cut to length so we have to get ready to install the center spring tree. First we bolt the headlight mount from the backside.
    [​IMG]
     
  13. alhall88

    alhall88 UAW

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    And one of the nice features as well will be the internal brake line. So I dry fit the left leg and mark just under the the top tree where the brake line will come out. On another note the chrome scratches easy so I used plastic wedges where the pinch bolts go so I wouldn't scratch the chrome legs when inserting them.
    [​IMG]
     
  14. alhall88

    alhall88 UAW

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    I used a rubber gromet in the hole then inserted the brake line.
    [​IMG]
     
  15. alhall88

    alhall88 UAW

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    I fed the main legs up through the bottom leg then the center spring tree then to bottom out in the top tree. Also note if you want you can mount the spring tree down where ever you want, but the headlight mount would need to be drilled in the bottom tree.
    [​IMG]
     
  16. alhall88

    alhall88 UAW

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    You will also notice that before I put the actual spring assembly on that its a good time to put on your handlebars. Don't forget your spacers. I bought some 1 inch chrome steel ones from Vickie that she had on the shelf. Next I went ahead and put the front axle in before tightening up the pinch bolts to keep the legs from turning.
    [​IMG]
     
  17. alhall88

    alhall88 UAW

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    Also notice that I put a set of these optional saber tooth covers on. You can put them at a bunch of different spots on the main legs. I opted just for one set as they are a $110 per set.
    [​IMG]
     
  18. alhall88

    alhall88 UAW

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    Now we pre assemble the spring tree. This is done by removing the top covers from the shocks and using a long extension thread the bolts through to the spring tree.
    [​IMG]
     
  19. alhall88

    alhall88 UAW

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    Looking at the pic you can see how easy to change the fluid will be. Using a strap wrench remove the top shock cover and suck the old fluid out and put in 10 cc's of new fluid in each shock.Now using the same method as the main legs we cut the spring tubes to 1 inch longer than the original measurement we had in order to have the pre load set properly.
    [​IMG]
     
  20. alhall88

    alhall88 UAW

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    This is where I needed a bunch of hands and since I was by myself I couldn't get many pics so I apologize.So all the legs are on and tight and the bottom clevises are threaded on. I can go ahead and thread the top shock and fork tube covers on. These come in a rounded style point or a scary sharp point like these.
    [​IMG]
     
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