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Tuesday, 1 May 2018


Zodiac for M-8 Softails

Netherlands headquartered distributor Zodiac International is “going deep” on opportunities to customize the handling, performance and styling of the new Softails.

General Manager Vincent Pels says that “the Softail has evolved, but there is still a lot of room for improvement – in fact the better it gets, the better it can get.”
Zodiac already supplies a lot of parts to personalize the new bikes, and Vincent’s view is that “everyone in the custom market is still only at the beginning of what will be one of the dominant dealer revenue opportunities of the future. These new Softails are a future facing platform that will be part of the Harley and wider custom market portfolio, one way or another, for years, if not decades to come.”
This month we present a sample of the parts that Zodiac has for the M-8 Softails, but as Vincent says, and as our own travels around the market in recent months have shown, “there’s plenty more to come.”

Freedom Performance ‘Radical Radius’ Exhausts

Tuned for the 2018 M-8 Softails, these Freedom Performance ‘Radical Radius’ exhausts feature one piece 2 1/2” (64 mm) outer diameter 16-gauge heavy duty heat shields that cover the headers for a full 220 degrees and a three-step header system for optimal horsepower and torque. 

The curved mufflers feature billet end caps; race version exhausts give an aggressive deep growl; removable baffles (quiet baffles available). All ‘Radical Radius’ exhausts are equipped with O2 sensor ports and come with plugs for use on models without O2 sensors. These exhausts come complete and ready to bolt on and include stainless steel hardware and brackets. Available in chrome or ceramic black with a choice of black or chrome end caps. Euro 4 approved versions are also available. 

S&S Stealth air cleaner

Czech made Diag4Bike/Diag4Tune fuel injection tuning

Italian made Otto Di Cuori front and rear turn signal and taillight kits

German made RST adjustable brake and clutch levers

Zodiac headlight housing

T.P.P. Variable Pressure Clutch for M-8

The Variable Pressure Clutch (VPC) by Tak’s Performance Parts (AIM Corp in the United States) is not “just a lock-up clutch”. The VPC is a system that reduces spring pressure at idle, and as the centrifugal force increases in line with rising engine rpm, it provides the clutch with the required pressure to match engine torque. 

It makes for easier clutch lever work from idle to 3000 rpm; in short, it will give you a lighter operating clutch, with a stronger engagement when it revs up and it will stop your stock clutch from slipping when you have a high-performance muscle motor. Available for 2017 to present Touring and 2018 Softail M-8s.

Öhlins FG433/434 Front Forks

These state-of-the-art Öhlins 43 mm conventional style front forks give the bike “supreme suspension, yet with retro-classic style and the familiar Öhlins Racing design. 

“The technology in these fully adjustable forks has been proven through the years on numerous applications and works for a range of different applications. The top cap gives easy access to spring preload and rebound adjustment, separately in each leg. Compression adjustment is with an external adjuster on the fork bottom clamps.
Length is 800 mm from the top of the fork tube to the center of the wheel axle mount. The Zodiac exclusive triple trees seen here are CNC-machined billet aluminum with a 31 mm top tree and 35 mm lower tree. 

The forks are available with both the inner tubes and fork sliders in Öhlins gold or black. Fork leg assemblies have clear anodized aluminum axle clamps with caliper mounting points. Caliper brackets for 2000-up style calipers for 11.5” (292 mm) and 11.8” (300 mm) discs and fender brackets are available separately in clear or black anodized finishes. Wheel axles are available for 3/4” and 25 mm bearings.

Two Brothers Racing 2-into-1 exhaust system

Burly Touring Sport handlebar fairing

Zodiac Argyle grip set


Vision X LED headlight unit

S&S Air 1 air cleaner cover

ThunderMax Fuel Injection for M-8

ThunderMax claims to be the most powerful, self-tuning fuel Harley-Davidson specific fuel injection management system available. The ThunderMax EFI system with AutoTune is purpose-built to deliver uncompromised performance. “It works on any bike, no matter if it is a plain stock, has a performance exhaust, and/or performance air cleaner or any other performance upgrade installed. 

“The AutoTune function of the ThunderMax will continually tune any fuel injected Harley engine for maximum performance. It is a wide-band, closed loop system, which means it continually and automatically adjusts air/fuel ratios every time you ride, regardless of changes on the motorcycle or any ambient condition, such as temperature, barometric pressure, humidity or a change in the fuel quality.”
Once installed, the ThunderMax with AutoTune “will fine-tune the base map to your riding conditions and habits automatically, every time you ride. The ThunderMax delivers easier starting, a smoother running engine, crisp and dramatically improved throttle response, and increased performance at all riding levels, without sacrificing fuel economy.
“It will also eliminate popping, spitting and backfiring for a better sounding exhaust. The ThunderMax also gives you the ability to adjust idle speed for a cooler running engine. The ThunderMax is an industry award-winning product that outperforms all other tuning systems in every riding and performance category and comes with a 3-year limited warranty.” Available for 2017 to present Milwaukee-Eight Touring and Tri-Glides, as well as 2018 Softails.