Installing wheels on a Harley-Davidson motorcycle is necessary when replacing tires, lubricating an axle or packing the bearings on a wheel. Correctly installing the wheel may mean the difference between a good ride and disaster. Fortunately, most of the work can be done right in your own garage. The time it takes to perform will depend on your skill level and the amount of experience you possess.
1. Place the wheel in between the front forks. The front tire’s valve stem is on the right side.
2. Coat the front axle with anti-seize lubricant. Insert the axle into the wheel from the right side of the bike.
3. Tighten the slider cap nuts on the right fork to prevent the axle from rotating during axle nut installation.
4. Place the washer, lock washer and axle nut onto the axle. Torque the axle nut down between 45 to 50 foot-pounds.
5. Loosen the slider cap nuts and retighten them to a torque value between nine and 13 foot-pounds.
6. Place the rear wheel inside of the rear swing arm as far forward as possible. Slip the drive belt onto the sprocket.
7. Pull the wheel back toward its correct position. Maneuver the wheel to place the brake disk inside the disk brake pads in the brake caliper.
8. Coat the rear axle with anti-seize lubricant. Slide the axle in from the right side of the motorcycle. The axle will go through the belt adjuster collar, the rear fork, the rear caliper bracket then through the wheel.
9. Insert the axle all the way through to the right side into the spacer, the belt adjuster collar and the left side of the rear fork.
10. Install the axle nut and washer onto the rear axle. Torque the nut down to 60 foot-pounds.