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Penske Shock Install

This is a discussion on Penske Shock Install within the Yamaha FZ-09 Guides and How-To's forums, part of the Yamaha FZ-09 Garage category; Received my shock yesterday (thanks Nick!) and installed it last night. Thought I'd post a couple of tips to help others avoid issues that I ...

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Thread: Penske Shock Install

  1. #1
    Senior Member stuarth's Avatar
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    Penske Shock Install

    Received my shock yesterday (thanks Nick!) and installed it last night. Thought I'd post a couple of tips to help others avoid issues that I ran in to during the install.

    I did not remove the tank, but did tilt it forward. Not specifically necessary, but there were a few times when I used a flashlight from the top to better see the upper mounting bolt so it was worthwhile for me.

    Make sure that you support the bike securely before removing the shock bolts. I used a 2x4 "T" stand that I made for another bike. Wedged it under the right footpeg, tip the bike against the sidestand to lift the rear wheel, and push the 2x4 underneath further so it supports the bike. I don't necessarily recommend this approach as it's not necessarily the most stable, but it's worked for me. I also ran a rope from the upper subframe to an overhead joist in my garage, just in case. You'll need to be careful not to bump the 2x4 if you use this technique, and make sure that it's upright enough that a small bump won't make it slip on the concrete. Non-slip rubber recommended.

    Removal of the stock shock was pretty straightforward, but there is very limited "swing" for a wrench. I did not remove anything from the rear of the bike. Breaking the bolt loose is the toughest part and I ended up positioning a closed-end wrench on the right side nut so it wouldn't move, then taking another closed-end wrench to the left bolt head. I had to use a piece of wood and a hammer to break that bolt loose but be careful that you don't damage the finish if you slip.
    From there, it was 1/6th of a turn on the nut side to patiently remove the nut. Slow, but I didn't see any other alternatives as clearance between the nut and swing arm is limited.

    Installing the new shock was a pain, but I think it's mostly because I requested Nick to set it up a tiny bit shorter than stock. Near as I can measure, it was about 1/16" shorter than stock. Apparently that's just enough that the lower bolt will not quite clear the inside top of the swing arm, and doesn't get a straight enough shot into the shock and swing arm holes. It's close, but as Maxwell Smart was so fond of saying, it "missed it by that much"... No amount of shifting the rear wheel up and down would allow it to slide through the holes. After much cursing and frustration, I took another look and tried removing the lower bolt for the link. That allowed the swingarm to move independently from the dog bone link, and I was able to get the bolt in.

    One more tip for those buying the remote reservoir version. The reservoir would just fit through the gap between the plastic pan under the seat, and the lower subframe rail. But, the reservoir gets a bit wider near the hose attachment, and that will not fit. Seat off, just in front of the battery compartment and hidden by the thick red cable that connects to the positive terminal of the battery is a 10mm bolt that holds the plastic pan to a bracket that runs between the passenger footpegs. Unscrew that, and you can raise the plastic pan just enough to allow the reservoir to go through. A bit of a pain to get that small bolt back in, but you'll avoid potentially scratching the subframe and/or the reservoir body.

  2. #2
    Senior Member mknj671's Avatar
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    Nice write up, I installed mine yesterday as well. Already had back side panels off for tidy tail install so I ran soft loop tie downs around subframe and up to garage door hangers. With Pitbull front stand and dual straps it was perfectly stable, thankfully I have a set of open end ratchet wrenches which made getting the lower bolt off much easier. Did you install smaller OD washers on the lower bolt or just go without any? I read a couple other posts from members that the stock washers did not fit on Penske and sure enough the OD was too big.

    Can't wait to get the forks and ECU done so I can finally put everything back together.
    2014 Yamaha FZ09 Graphite #794
    2015 KTM 500EXC
    2017 KTM 300 XCW

  3. #3
    Senior Member stuarth's Avatar
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    Honestly? I didn't notice and used the stock washers. I may check when I get home later tonight, but I'm not particularly concerned at this point. If they're too large- and a picture that I took of just the shock sure makes it appear that way- I can't see it causing any problems. I'll likely go in and replace with smaller ones though now that you brought that to my attention. Thanks for the update!

    Update- I removed the lower bolt and installed smaller washers. The bolt-head side has a 1/2" I.D., and you need a ~3/4" O.D. so an uncommon side if you're going to have it fit into the recess on the shock mount. I ended up at a local hardware store and found a bronze washer (labeled a bronze bearing) that was the correct size. A standard 3/8" I.D. washer will fit the nut side.
    Last edited by stuarth; 01-31-2014 at 10:07 PM.

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