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Screamin' Eagle/Öhlins Remote Reservoir Rear Shocks

Smooth Out Your Ride

MISLED
9/15/2023


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When I saw Harley-Davidson release these rear performance shocks for Touring models, I couldn’t wait to try them.

 These high-performance nitrogen over-oil shocks were designed with Öhlins specifically for Screamin’ Eagle Factory Team race bikes. They are monotube design with a remote reservoir that are completely adjustable to match a riding style using an tune-able preload spring to set sag and fine tune adjustments for compression at the reservoir and rebound at the bottom of the shock.

 
 
 
 This is currently a very popular item. I monitored stock while they were on order and after I recieved the kit from the factory.


They are readily available from Harley-Davidson’s website and most dealers are putting them on the shelf also.
 
 
 
 
They came very well packed as I expected with all Harley-Davidson products.
 

 Installation is straight forward and easy if you have Sockets, Torx Bits, Allen Bits, and of course a Torque Wrench.

 
 

 You will need to have the rear suspension off the ground. It's much simpler if you have a lift with a jack under the frame.

 
 
I have outlined the basic install instructions below from the latest service instructions and included torque specifications from service manuals. Shocks are straight forward to most people, but these instructions are laid out well from Harley and needed for which spacers you will use with mounting brackets and where the provided washers go. Also, if you plan on making adjustments you can’t do it without them. So, make sure you read them.
 
 

 1)      PREPARE FOR REMOVAL

a)      Set vehicle upright.

b)      Secure with tie-downs.

c)      Raise rear of vehicle.

d)      Remove saddlebags.

 

 

2)      REMOVE OLD SHOCKS

 

a)      Remove upper and lower shock absorber mounting bolts, lock washers and flat washers and remove shock absorber.

i)        Save screws and washers for later use.

b)      Remove OE screws from fender strut.

 
 
3)  INSTALL MOUNTING BRACKET
      

a)      Install appropriate spacers into mounting bracket. Apply thread locker to mounting spacers. Loctite 262 High Strength (Red) and tighten and torque to 8 ft-lbs.

i)        NOTE

(1)   For spacer selection, reference the accessory that is used on the vehicle.

(a)    Short Spacer: Use with Tour Pak or saddlebag support insert. Other accessory inserts can be used like the 4-Point Docking Hardware Kit.

(b)   Long Spacer: Use with fender strut insert.

  

bb)b)  Apply thread locker to long screw. Loctite 262 High Strength (Red)   

i)        Note

(1)   The installation calls for Loctite 262 High Strength (Red), I chose to use Loctite 243 Medium Strength (Blue) which would make for easier disassembly in the future without stripping Allen heads.

 

c)      Install mounting bracket and install screws. Tighten and torque to 20 ft-lbs.

 

d)      Install flat head screw in reservoir clamp. Do not tighten completely.

  

4)      INSTALL SHOCK ASSEMBLY

The shock lengths are set to stock at factory. You will most likely run into issue with holes not being perfectly aligned on both sides for both shocks. I found the easiest way to do this was to start on the right-hand side of the motorcycle. Partially install lower bolt assembly into shock and swingarm. Raise and or lower the jack to line up the hole with top bolt assembly and install bolt into upper frame. Then continue to the left side and repeat the same steps to install the bolts. If you don’t do this pressure will be required to align the hole for the bolt and you can easily cross thread hardware and fight yourself starting the bolt. Do not forget to use the provided washers on the inside of the shock as the stock assembly only used washers on the outside.

a)      Note:

i)        Reuse original OE mounting hardware.

b)      Apply thread locker to each mounting bolt. Loctite 243 Medium Strength (Blue)

c)      Important:

i)        Install screw to shock assembly using original washer on outside and the provided kit washer to the inside of the shock to the frame side.

d)      Install screws to frame. Do not tighten completely.

e)      Repeat procedure for other screw.

f)       Tighten screws and torque to 63–70 ft-lbs.

 
 

 

5)      INSTALL RESERVOIR

a)      Install reservoir in clamp bracket.

b)      Adjust as needed for proper hose routing.

c)      Install clamp bracket to mounting bracket.

i)        Note:

(1)   I found it easier to install the brackets to the mounts then insert and tighten the reservoir.

d)      Install screws and tighten and torque to 62 in-lbs.

e)      Tighten screw flat head screw and torque to 27 in-lbs.

f)       Secure hose with cable straps. 

6)      NOTE

a)      Öhlins shocks are pre-set at Harley-Davidson's original equipment length.

b)      Adjusting length could result in tire and fender contact or axle and muffler contact at travel limits on some vehicles.

c)      Reference Öhlins owner's manual for: Setting up, adjustments, spring preload, compression damping, rebound damping adjust length and general setup.

7)      Install saddlebags.

8)      Lower rear wheel.

 

I chose to leave the shock preload alone and rebound alone while only adjusting compression to 15 clicks. This is handled by turning clockwise until it stops and turning adjuster to first click. This will be 0 for both rebound and compression. Then count your clicks for the appropriate setting.

If you wish to change rebound, it is set from the bottom knob on shock. The preload is done by using the provided kit tool and adjusting preload ring on shock and measuring distance from the top of the preload ring to the bottom of the shock upper body.
 
In the instructions there is a preload table for different options for rider weight, Tour-pack, or no Tour-pack. There is also a table for compression and rebound for solo rider, solo rider with luggage, solo rider with passenger, solo rider with luggage and passenger with these settings for Tour-pack and no Tour-pack.
 
 

After the first mile on these I was totally impressed and sold with a night and day difference. I started to try and find as many bumps as possible, as I couldn’t believe the difference this setup makes. It is so much smoother, as the compression and rebound work perfectly with my ass staying in the seat without feeling like I would be ejected sometimes or crushing my spine on a bump.

After putting on a good amount of miles over the city, country and highway I have zero complaints. Simply put, this is an amazing upgrade. As I rode around and talked with others I saw with them, nothing but positive comments and noting that their ol’ladys notice a difference right away also.
There are a lot of variables regarding this setup for adjustment. I personally would try and control everything with compression first for short rides, unless I was doing a long trip or always riding with a new setup variable as a passenger or throwing a Tour-pack on. Then I would worry about taking off saddlebags and adjusting for passenger and luggage. I’m extremely happy now.  Just say yes to them if you get the chance! You won’t regret it. You can find them here Screamin' Eagle/Öhlins Remote Reservoir Rear Shocks | Harley-Davidson USA or at your local dealer.

-Misled

 

 

 

 

 


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Reader Comments


Great article.

Christy
Png, FL
Saturday, September 16, 2023
Editor Response Thanks, you made the crew's day.
--Bandit
Wonderful article!!

Grsenia
Davenport, FL
Saturday, September 16, 2023
Editor Response Who paid you?
--Bandit

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