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Thread: Suspension Improvement

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    Suspension Improvement

    I installed the Highlifter Spring Kit last month. The suspension and ride height inproved. My Rhino suspension improved by removing the sway bar so I removed the sway bar on my Big Red and was surprised how much improvement I got. The Big Red is so wide the sway at speed in hardly noticeable. I run modified Rhino aluminum wheels and 26" Big Horn Tires.
    Rhino wheels have the same off set but I had to drill the holes very slightly for the larger wheel stud. I got the correct taper lug nuts at Autozone. Top speed increased from 39 to 42 and I checked it with my GPS. I relocated my my airfilter intake and can go 1500 miles on the filter now. I couldn't be happier with my Big Red.

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    OFRC boy's Avatar
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    Re: Suspension Improvement

    I am interested in doing this and have looked at my machine and can't see how to remove the spring to replace it. Could someone explain the install for me?

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    Re: Suspension Improvement

    Highlifter sells the spring tool. You will have to be very careful and have a buddy help. The bottom out rubber needs to be moved down on the shock shaft to get the spring retainer off. The ride height will improve for more ground clearance and you will want to try it without the swaybar for the best suspension performance. 27" Big Horn tires will improve the top speed about 5 MPH and the low end will still be good. If top speed is not important then 26" Big Horns or stock tires may be OK.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Suspension Improvement-spring-tool-highlifter.jpg  

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    OFRC boy's Avatar
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    Re: Suspension Improvement

    Looking at the web site it states (see below quote) this tool can't be used with the Big Red, but to use an Automotive Grade Tool. I saw also that these can be found at some parts stores that you can leave a deposit and then get your money back when you return the tool. My question is on how to remove the spring, on the top of the spring is a split ring. If you compress the spring can you remove the ring and then slide the spring off over the top of the shock?
    ****NOTE: The Spring Compression Tool cannot be used with the Arctic Cat Prowler or Honda Big Red Lift Springs. You must use an Automotive Grade Spring Compression Tool.****



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    Re: Suspension Improvement

    [quote=OFRC boy;758554]Looking at the web site it states (see below quote) this tool can't be used with the Big Red, but to use an Automotive Grade Tool. I saw also that these can be found at some parts stores that you can leave a deposit and then get your money back when you return the tool. My question is on how to remove the spring, on the top of the spring is a split ring. If you compress the spring can you remove the ring and then slide the spring off over the top of the shock?
    ****NOTE: The Spring Compression Tool cannot be used with the Arctic Cat Prowler or Honda Big Red Lift Springs. You must use an Automotive Grade Spring Compression Tool.****

    Ok, I did not take my shock apart however I "think" we can get this apart with out killing ourselves . Look at the picture of the overall shock, no biggie here just wanted a reference pic. the PDF has more info. Now remove the shock, remember to use a floor jack and jackstand to do this.

    You will notice the notch at the top of the shock and below that there is what appears to be a plastic washer. This is actually the shock cover as noted in the other picture (to protect the seal). Now, compress the spring using your free borrowed tools from your local auto parts store Once the spring is compressed part way the spring will lower and the spring center rod will be exposed. Now slide the notched piece down tward the spring and off the rod. Now your ready to remove the spring.

    While we are on the subject could someone please explain to me how this will give BR lift? I would buy into this IF the spring was weak. However, most of our machines are fairly new so if you measure the lenth of the installed spring and remove it and its the same length how much and "how" is the new spring going to lift the machine.
    Works makes a set of extended lenth shocks. expensive, yes, however this is the proper way to lift. You should also disconnect / remove the rear sway bar or get extended "dog bones/links" which I'm not even sure these are available.




    Last edited by Cenflrider; 05-06-2010 at 12:26 PM.

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    Re: Suspension Improvement

    A firmer/stiffer spring will decrease the amount the shock will compress under the bike's weight thus adding lift to the bike. Not the way I would do it but to each there own. I would look at adding a stiffer spring only if the bike was routinely carrying heavy loads and need the extra help or the springs were getting weak.

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    Re: Suspension Improvement

    Ok, I had the HL Lift Springs on my Rincon, until I went to Elka Shocks. Here is what happens with these lift springs:

    The new Lift spring is actually LONGER then the OEM spring on your shock now. Add to that the fact that the HL Lift Spring is also about twice the diameter in thickness over the OEM spring. You OEM shock has play left inside the actual shock that the OEM spring does not fully use. By adding the HL Lift spring you not only use that left over space but also loose the "sit in" sag, just like what Sfrankland said.

    I really liked my HL lift Springs on the Rincon, they were outstanding. The nice thing about them also is that your angles for the CVs is still nearly OEM specs. When you are stopped or have no weight on the machine, ie jacked up, that is the only time the CVs are extended most driving, etc will keep the CVs with in the proper angles. Also, unlike a traditional lift, your arms, brake lines etc remain at their proper locations also.

    The HL Lift Springs really are a nice way to get an extra lift (they claim 2" but my Rincon only gained maybe 1-1.25") but the real benefit is the load capacity and loaded ride height. With the HL Lift Springs, you can load your Big Red up and still keep your OEM rearend ride height.

    Say a 500lb load with the OEM shocks sags the rear 3", now your down to appro. 7" of ground clearance in the rear. With the HL Lift Springs and the same load, you would probably sag only 1-1.5" and still have 8.5-9" of rear clearance.

    To me, this is the real benefit of the HL Lift Springs. That and I loved the tighter handling that I recieved with the HL Lift Springs. Before them, the machine would "lean" in sharp corners and bottom out on a regular basic, after I installed the HL Lift Springs it ran the corners as flat as a rail and only bottomed out then I went over something that was taller then my 11.5" inches of clearance.

    Now with this said, keep in mind, I normally can't stand 99.5% of the stuff HL Makes. As far as I'm concerned they have only made two things for a Honda worth a crap, the Lift Springs and the Gearless Locker (not made by them made by Detroit Locker). I have run thier lifts, hop-ups, brakes, etc and don't recommend them for any of that. I will recommend the Lift Springs and Gearless Locker (not needed on the Big Red).

    Hope this helps answer a few questions about the HL Lift Springs.

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    Re: Suspension Improvement

    I installed the spring using an automotive type compressor at a friend's shop. I was glad to have a unit which kind of caged the spring/shock in. I would be wary of trying to use a smaller compressor tool. Not worth getting hurt to save a couple of bucks.

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    Re: Suspension Improvement

    You could also try a spring spacer I just did this on my new 2012 Can Am 800R Outlander XT
    With the spacers the OEM springs are compressed and make forum a stiffer ride some people have put 2" or more spacers to get a "lift" out of them I went with a 1" spacer just to stiffen up the suspension on the Canned Yam this would also work on a Big Red for an inexpensive trick my spacers cost $37 for the aluminum and then some time to cut them to length easy mod with good results

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