8 Reasons You Need a Clymer Manual

Harley-Davidson Dyna cover frontSome motorcycle riders visit the shop every time their bike needs service. That’s okay for some that can afford it (motorcycle mechanics charge a premium for simple maintenance anyone can do), but half the fun of owning a motorcycle is tinkering with it and making it your own. Besides the money, there is also a time penalty involved in having to locate a place that works on your older or uncommon bikes. For the DIY motorcycle (or personal watercraft, snowmobile, ATV, boat, etc) enthusiast, here are eight reasons why a Clymer manual can be the best tool in your toolbox.







working on the rebuild1.    Written from Experience

Every Clymer manual is written during a complete tear down and rebuild of an entire bike. Each manual is made just for a specific range of make, models, and years of motorcycle. This provides exactly the info you need, without the fluff you don’t want.








checking valve clearance2.    Detailed Pictures

All of the important steps are explained in detail, and often with high resolution close-up pictures. A text explanation is useful, but photos are often priceless when dealing with small complex assemblies of parts. You won’t find pictures like ours in the factory service manual.




4071 cover rear3.    Newbie Friendly

Clymer manuals are user friendly, to the point that a first time motorcycle owner can get started maintaining their own bike on day one. Follow along step-by-step, as the manual guides you on everything from checking the battery health, to replacing the air filter. We even start each manual with an introduction to the tools you need and proper procedures for working on a bike.




two dirt bikes apart4.    Expert Advice

The motorcycle experts need manuals too. Year to year changes, critical torque specs, and complicated assemblies are all so numerous as to be easily forgettable. Whether upgrading a camshaft, or rebuilding the transmission, follow a manual so you don’t miss a critical step.





spark plug removal5.    Wide Selection

Clymer’s wide variety of titles means that you can buy the manual you need, no matter what you ride. American and metric cruisers, two and four-stroke dirt bikes, vintage classics from Germany, England, and Italy, sport bikes, standards, scramblers, cafe racers, super bikes, full dress touring rigs, and even minibikes; Clymer covers every aspect of the motorcycle hobby. Plus we have titles for other types of powersports and small engines as well.




softail teardown6.    Print and Digital Versions

Got your greasy hands elbow deep in a project, and no time for flipping pages? Suddenly need to fix an electrical problem miles from nowhere without your library of service manuals? That’s alright, Clymer has online repair manuals too, easily accessible on your laptop, tablet, or smartphone, anywhere with wi-fi or cell phone service. They offer the same trusted content as the Clymer Print manuals, but in an electronic format, with easy search function, and many more color photos. Plus, if need be, you can print just the pages you need and take them out to the shop.



yamaha brake calipers7.    Huge Knowledge Base

The authors and editors of Clymer manuals are long time motorcycle riders and mechanics as well. To get the same knowledge they’ve accumulated you’d have to attend a technical college for years and ride for about a million miles. But, save your time and money and just buy a Clymer manual instead. You get all the benefits of expert mechanic experience, all at a very reasonable price!





Harley-Davidson teardown8.    Excellent Value

A Clymer manual gets used a lot. Our manual will be one of your most used tools, right up there with a good socket wrench and an impact driver.  Unlike one-purpose tools, a manual will help you for every single bit of maintenance or repair. It’s the single most valuable tool in your toolbox, yet it costs less than anything from Snap-On!

2 Responses

  1. Ron Sutherland says:

    I would just like to post somewhere my opinion of your manual. I have the one for the 1982 Honda CB650. I have to say that the illustrations, usually photographs are so dark and unclear that it is quite difficult to see what is being illustrated. Second, the amount of actual detail as in exploded parts diagrams is pathetic. These are really helpful in working on any assembly where you can see at a glance what holds what together and in what order. Absolutely essential information like dismantling the air assist shocks is completely missing as it’s considered ” too difficult” for the home mechanic. So, this “manual” would only be of use to a complete numbskull. The other thing that really annoys me is the patronising tone of ” don’t drop this” and “remember that petrol is very inflammable” and ” just take it off the bike and take it to a dealer to do the work because you are most likely too dumb to do it yourself”. For someone who has worked on cars for 40 years I don’t need to be told how to hold a spanner, all I need is a breakdown of the item as a diagram and some spec figures. Thanks for your time.

    • bryan wood says:

      We do appreciate the input. These books are written with the complete novice in mind, and always have been, so it can make them seem a bit patronizing if you are an experienced mechanic. As for the pictures, we are limited by the resolution that can be printed at the price point we are operating at. For books like yours, for a bike last made nearly 40 years ago, we are also stuck with the technology used when the book was originally written, and in some cases no longer have the negatives or original prints. We have been slowly working back through the catalog to digitize and improve what we do have, but we are working backwards from our most popular titles.

      As for the air shocks, these were just are not considered user serviceable. Yes, you can find information online now on how to take them apart and replace the seal, but when we wrote the manual the popular option was just to replace them with something better. These shocks did not have great damping characteristics when new, and 30+ years of riding have not made them any better.

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