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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My buddies 1200 had very weak front end. I found one side had oil one side was dry. (bike has been sitting two years)

My question is how much spring should stick out the top of the fork tube with forks extended on bench.??

I am sure these are stock springs, one short and one long.
They measure right at 6.4 for short and 16.02 for long. These are right on the edge for replacement. (assuming these numbers are right for the 1200.0

Here are my choices.
Use his stock springs. They stick out above the tube 3 inches.

Or use his long spring and a short spring from my 1500 rebuild. Pairing these two up they stick out 4.25 inches.

Will two properly filled shocks work fine with 3 inches of preload or should I go with the 4.25 set up.?? This 1200 will be ridden two up most of the time.. But they are not big people. It would bottom out with a good sneese before.. but leary about ending up stiff as a rock.

thanks for your input in advance.
Don
 

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1985 GL1200 A
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Unless you're installing Progressive Springs, which I recommend if they are affordable, just use the OEM ones. The main pressure in the forks doesn't come from the spring preload, but from air pressure injected into the forks from the onboard compressor (on my '85 Aspy) or from a low volume hand air pump.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
thanks.. well air pressure is not a problem. Holds pressure fine.
I would think oil and preload do the most of the work and air fine tunes the firmness.

We are going with stock springs for now. Maybe progressives later if
buddy decides to keep the 1200.

So question remains. go with springs that rise above tubes 3 inches or
ones that rise 4.25??

don
 

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the actual question is what are the spring rates would determine which ones to use,if the spring rates are the same the longer spring would make a stiffer front end
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
the actual question is what are the spring rates would determine which ones to use,if the spring rates are the same the longer spring would make a stiffer front end
Right.. I am assuming they are pretty close to the same. I know pvc spacers are used when springs are at their limits. This 1 inch longer spring has got to be better than a pvc spacer.

The thing I am struggling with.. The stock springs are right on the edge right now. (again assuming lenght numbers above are correct. and I did not get those from a manual) and yet they protrude 3 inches when relaxed.

I am inclined to think that is plenty of preload. But tell me if I am wrong.
wingryder
 

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I would think that the distance of compression would be the major factor.
After stuffing that longer spring in, how much travel will you get before they compress onto their own coils? You may end up with a very stiff suspension that beats the hell out of the rest of the front end.
I would install the stock springs and use a heavier oil before I started mixing and matching springs. (If progressives aren't in the budget) Don't forget these can be tuned for braking by jacking up the anti-dive settings as well.
Your specs on the springs are correct. You are right on the service limit.
 

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Old oil will behave like no oil. I would not change to a heavier grade than it's called for. If it's dry, the seal is probably shot and it all was forced out the top. I put progressives in and no more messing with adjusting air, as it's supposed to be at 0 pressure.
 
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