Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Ormond Beach, Florida, USA
Model: GL1800 '03 Stream Silver
Spav, the 1800 has a preload adjustor. Is that what you are talking about? Is the shock assembled with the spring? The preload adjustor is at the top, and the hydrulic line goes off to the motor / pump that mounts on the right, kind of under the saddlebag.
If your new shock is not completely assembled with the preload adjustor, you will need a shock compressor tool to put the spring & preload adjustor on. Even if it is, you should probably disassemble it and service the adjustor. Honda kind of under fills them, and they don't sart actually adjusting until you hit 5 - 10 on the meter. You can tell by putting gthe bike on the centerstand, running the preload to zero, then moving it up. You'll be able to hear a change in tone as the pump stops compressing air and starts actually moving the piston.
If you have the shock with the adjustor, but just the line that goes to the pump, you need to fill it, also. We use fork oil to fill it when we are replacing shocks.
<edit for typo>
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Florida Prowler #97