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Thread: Fork removal on Heritage Softail Evo. Help, please.

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    Fork removal on Heritage Softail Evo. Help, please.

    Hi all,
    Thanks for allowing me to join the group. I wonder if you could help me?
    I’ve recently purchased a 1997 Heritage Softail Classic (FLSTC) Evo. I’ve wanted one of these beauties for as long as I can remember, and it’s taken me until the age of 54 to actually get one… and I couldn’t be happier! ;)
    Overall, the bike is in remarkable condition for its age (unlike its new owner!), but the alloy sections of the front forks are badly pitted… one of my pet hates on any bike! I decided to polish these, and after many, many hours working my way through a full range of grits of wet and dry, I’ve made one hell of a difference to them. However… I’ve now decided that even though I removed the front wheel, fender, and brake caliper, I really need to remove the forks themselves to make a proper job of the polishing!
    Here’s where I’m a bit lost…
    I only have a Haynes manual which (allegedly) covers this model of Harley, and it insists that there are pinch “bolts” (plural) on the triple trees for each fork. When I peer behind the plate behind the headlight, the one that covers the forks, I only see ONE pinch bolt on each fork (?). Is this correct, or should I be seeing another bolt? Could someone who has the same model of bike perhaps tell me exactly where the other bolt is?
    Also… just how much pressure/tension is behind the cap nut at the top of the forks? Most of what I read seems to say that removing those could easily blow my arm and head off in one fell swoop, but is there really that much tension there? The bike is jacked up with the front wheel out, and the forks are fully extended.
    A bit of a long post, I know, but just wanted to make myself clear. I’m no mechanic, but willing to learn, in order to make this bike as good as it can be. Any help would be much appreciated!
    All the best from sunny Lincolnshire,
    Tim.

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    Re: Fork removal on Heritage Softail Evo. Help, please.

    The Haynes manuals are inaccurate - get yourself a genuine HD service manual. They come up on Ebay now and then or there are a few sources where you can download them in pdf format online. The later Twin Cam Softail front ends have just the one pinch bolt on each side, I'm unsure about Evos. As long as the front wheel is off the ground and the spring inside is relaxed then the pressure on the underside of the fork cap is easily manageable. I usually undo the cap with the wheel on the ground, then lift it up, cover the cap with a rag and unscrew by hand ...

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    Re: Fork removal on Heritage Softail Evo. Help, please.

    Hi Tim.

    There is a 1998 softail service manual in the list in the link below :

    https://www.carlsalter.com/harley-service-manuals.asp

    I know it's not a 1997 manual, but may help.

    I have a 1998 FXSTC, on the sides on my forks there are 2 large phillips screws and 2 washers.
    On the rear of the bottom yoke there are 2 bolts.

    To remove the forks you will need a socket that fits the top nut, undo this until it's loose and
    unwind by hand and pull out watching for the black rubber washer.
    The spring wont come out so don't worry about it (it doesn't on my forks).
    Then all you have to do is remove the screws and bolts and the forks can be pulled down and
    out of the yokes.

    But remove the wheel, caliper and mudguard first.

    Hope this helps.
    Last edited by FXSTC Dave; 03-09-2019 at 08:24 PM.
    FXSTC Dave.


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    Re: Fork removal on Heritage Softail Evo. Help, please.

    Hi Tim.

    This is socket I use to undo the top nut on my forks.
    I got it off Ebay years ago; Motion Pro HD Fork Cap Nut Socket 1 3-8 PN MN08-0139.

    Just checked Ebay and found this :

    https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Harley-Sp...gAAOxyVaBS0Y6z

    Hope this helps.
    FXSTC Dave.


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    Re: Fork removal on Heritage Softail Evo. Help, please.

    Save yourself the bother. Machine Mart sell Scotchbrite type stuff in small rolls of various coarsness. I think there are 3 grades. Buy a roll of each & get rubbing, it'll take no time at all. Finish off with a polishing mop in an angle grinder with plenty of solvol. This is what I did & it works a treat. HTH.

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