By Hoss on February 22, 2017
Not too bad for the price. Better than my old leaking Harley shocks.
The 412 Series shocks are simply the best value shock on the market today. The 412's simple, durable design means they will be an improvement to your motorcycle's suspension performance for as long as you are riding it. The double-wall steel body construction with nitrogen charged, multi-staged velocity sensitive valving gives you smooth, consistent damping. A five position cam style preload adjuster lets you dial in your ride whether you're a light rider or heavy hitter. With multiple options, there is sure to be a 412 that's right for you and your bike.
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Fitment is guaranteed or your money back plus free return shipping. Don't waste time installing a product that doesn't fit. We worked hard ensuring that this product is an exact fit on the vehicles listed below.
By Hoss on February 22, 2017
Not too bad for the price. Better than my old leaking Harley shocks.
By kb on June 12, 2017
Only a little bit of riding before this review but I like them. These replaced stock air shocks on a 2007 Ultra that were leaking oil. Best price, very fast delivery and a quality part...can't beat it.
By Mike on January 23, 2018
I just got my 412 13" heavy dutys installed and could not be happier. A world of difference. Thanks for your help
By Kawasakiguy on May 1, 2018
I replaced the worn out OEM shocks on my 03 Kawasaki Vulcan 1600 Classic. I had to use the stock upper shock bushings and cut them down to make spacers for the top mount of the new shocks to kick them out from bike but besides that they where easy to install. I took a 220 mile trip with the wife and it was very smooth and no bottoming out problems at all. Great set of shocks so far.
By Marshall on July 12, 2018
As expected they are stout and not soft/mushy, but my Vmax at higher speeds needed the added handling, so I give them a thumbs up!
By Red on August 20, 2018
Work ok and plating on springs is superior to Harley.
By Jim T on April 19, 2019
A world better than stock air shox
By Kevin on July 26, 2019
Easy quick change. Its like a new bike. All the old noise and grinding gone. Very comfortable. Quick shipping and great price. Thank you.
By Bruce C. on December 17, 2019
I'm a retired mechanic/tech. Installed several sets for FL owners. They all liked them. Progressive Suspension has always been a standard for quality products.
By Ronald J. on March 26, 2020
At the time it was easier better service to find this progressive part for my 86 K75S. Not too much trouble to install. Bike definitely rides and handles better than before.
By Timothy M. on May 25, 2020
Huge difference. Replaced my factory 11 year old shocks and extended them 1". Rides great, total weight of 450 lbs. with passenger and gear and no bottoming out.
By Amy W. on June 9, 2020
Excellent shocks! Keep up the good work.
By mark j s. on June 22, 2020
Love the product! My ride is so much better now! Great bang for my buck!
By Boone B. on July 13, 2020
Was exactly what I ordered.
By Art L. on September 30, 2020
The shocks went on very easily and work perfectly.
By dave b. on December 8, 2020
Really had to work at getting lower mounting bolts to go in. Amazing difference in ride once installed, wish I had done this months ago!
By David L. on January 13, 2021
Very happy. Will buy again.
By Joe M. on March 20, 2021
12.5 in. for 2014 Road King, Standard Spring. Perfect, can't get no better. A1. Lowered bike a little over an 1 in. Great, smooth ride. Would highly recommend. Air Shocks had to go. Set these Progressives on the #3 setting. Excellent!
By Todd W. on April 23, 2021
I had all afternoon scheduled to install. My brother-in-law helped me 45 minutes and went for a test ride! Unbelievable ride difference. The only frustration is why I had waited so long to get the progressive shocks on bike, amazing ride. Took my wife for a short ride (still not warm enough 4 her) she couldn’t believe how much better our bike rode! Awesome
For machines that are equipped with two shocks, they are indeed sold in pairs.
Yes, Progressive 412 Series Shocks are sold in pairs for machines that come the factory with two rear shocks.
If it's the bushings that go between the upper and lower shock mounts on your machine, then yes, they're indeed included. In fact, depending on what bike you're mounting the shock(s) onto, the kit may include a myriad of bushings to fit since one set of shocks may fit more than one machine.
Travel varies, depending on which shock length you select to install on your bike. In the case of the 2006 FLHX street glide shocks, the length of travel for each shocks is as follows:
1.85" for the 11.5" shocks
2.35" for the 12" shocks
2.85" for the 12.5" shocks
3.48" for the 13" shocks
3.98" for the 13.5" shocks
As you can see, the greater the shock's length, the more travel that's available for your bike. And don't forget to choose the correct spring rate to fit your particular riding needs. With Progressive's 412 shocks, heavy-duty springs are best suited for solo riders over 220lbs. If you ride two-up and/or with a full load of luggage at least 50% of the time, you'll certainly want to go with the heavy-duty springs to cover that extra weight.
Yes, according to the data I have from Progressive, the 2001 model year Road King Classic shipped from the factory with 13" length shocks, so you'd certainly want to order shocks from that are of the same length to avoid having to fool around with suspension geometry. Another important factor to consider is your weight, and whether or not you plan to travel heavy (two-up and/or with a full load of luggage). If you're over 220 lbs, and/or travel two-up/heavy at least 50% of the time, you'll want to choose the heavy-duty spring rate. Otherwise, the standard rate shocks will do an excellent job.
By: Rick R.
Progressive recommends that heavy-duty springs are to be used for solo riders over 220 lbs. Furthermore, if you ride two-up and/or with a full load of luggage at least 50% of the time, heavy-duty shocks are also recommended. Since you're two-up 40% of the time, you should certainly consider the additional weight of the batwing, saddlebags and the trunk you want to add later on. Just add those items to your own weight and, if that puts you at 220 lbs. or more, then you'd certainly be wise to go with a heavy-duty spring rate.
Furthermore, we strongly recommend the installation of a matching set of fork springs to go with any Progressive Shocks. Should you choose the standard-rate rear shocks, then the standard rate Progressive Fork Springs will do the job nicely. If you go for the heavy-duty spring shocks, we recommend Progressive Heavy-Duty Fork Springs. In doing so, you'll be sure to balance the front and rear spring rates equally, which in turn, minimizes the back-and-forth wallow that's common anytime front or rear spring rates are mismatched. This becomes more noticeable the faster you go and with bigger bumps.
Yes, you can indeed use Progressive 412 shocks without air since. The shocks themselves actually have no provision for air, so there's no need to worry about hooking them up to that system.
The standard 1993 XLH883 comes with 13-1/2" shocks from the factory, so you'd actually be reducing the amount of travel available if you were to select the 12-1/2" long shocks. In addition, you would be changing the bike's steering geometry since you'd be lowering the rear end of the bike.
While more suspension travel is nice, the best thing you can do is order springs that are of the correct rate for your weight and riding needs. That is to say, it's not the shock's length that effects travel as much as spring rate does. A properly sprung bike will rarely bottom out. If you spend most of your time riding solo and weigh less than 220 lbs - then a standard rate shock will do the job. If you travel two-up and/or with a full load of luggage on the bike at least fifty percent of the time, you'll want to order a set of heavy-rate springs.
If changing the bike's geometry is of a concern, then you should order a set of 13-1/2" shocks so as not to make the bike handle differently. Again, the most important factor for resisting bottomg is to choose the correct spring rate for your needs. With that, regardless of the spring rate you choose, you'll find the bike will not bottom out.
The 2000 model year Harley-Davidson FXD shipped from the factory with shocks that measured 12.6" eye-to-eye.
There are two things that you can do to get the best possible ride for your needs. The first is getting the correct spring rate for your weight and riding needs. Heavy-duty rate springs are advised for solo riders that weight more 220lbs. Furthermore, if you ride two-up and/or with a full load of luggage at least 50% of the time, be sure to choose heavy-duty springs as well. Just about all of Progressive's shocks, including the 412 Series Shocks, are available in standard and heavy-duty spring rates.
The second important factor, and this is especially true if you decide to go with heavy-duty shocks - is to match the fork springs to the shock. In this way, you're assured that both ends of the bike will react the same to irregularities in the road since progressive-rate springs act differently than the OEM straight-rate springs in the forks. In this way, the bike will wallow less over bumps and you'll notice it tends to track very true when hauling it around corners. Of course, the faster you go, the more noticeable these differences will be come.
The difference between straight-rate and progressive-rate springs is that, with the former - no matter how much you compress the spring, the amount of force it exerts remains nearly the same. Progressive-rate springs, on the other hand, exert more force the more they're compressed. In other words, the bigger the bump, the better job the progressive springs do in quickly slowing those forces without the heavy jolt you'd feel with straight rate springs over the same bump.
Be sure to choose the correct Progressive Standard Weight Fork Springs or Progressive Heavy-Duty Fork Springs from our website if you want to get the best ride possible.
And, I did fail to mention - there's one solid rule about suspension that applies anytime you're comparing the stock item to an aftermarket part. That rule is that that you don't know what good suspension is until you've tried it. You will find that Progressive shocks are a significant improvement over the stock items, no matter where you ride or how you ride. And if you're looking for the best possible ride, we implore you to match the shocks with a set of Progressive fork springs as well.
will this 412 work and can I get it in all black. I am pretty sure the studs are 5/8th of an inch. Please give the the exact item # so i can order these. Thanks in Advance Bill
Yes, the 412 shocks will indeed fit your 1969 Harley Sportster. Considering your weight and the fact that you'll be riding solo, the standard rate shocks will do the trick for you. Each set of Progressive 1969 Sportster shocks come with the appropriate bushings to fit your bike, so there's no need to order any additional parts. With regard to an all-black set up, unfortunately, the only shocks we have to fit your machine are available in chrome only.
By: Randy Mc.
The 2010 Harley Sporstster XL1200C shipped from the Kansas factory with 11-1/2" long shocks on it. Mind you, aside from XL1200C shock length, be sure to choose the correct spring rate for your needs. If you're a solo rider at least 50% of the time and 220lbs or less, go with the standard rate shocks. If you're bigger than that, or ride with a passenger quite often, you'll want to get a set of Progressive Sportster shocks with heavy-duty springs.
is the top to wide for the bike or doesn't stick out far enough from the fender strut?
By: Brent R
Progressive's 412 shocks will indeed fit the FXDS Dyna Convertible. The tops won't be too wide to fit, either. We've sold quite a few of these to fit that particular bike and I'm not aware of any interference issues between the fender strut and the shocks. Nor has there been a problem with the shocks being too wide to fit. Everything you need to complete the installation is included in the box.
There's no need to purchase any spanner wrench in order to adjust any of the Progressive shocks that we sell! They all come with one in the box that'll allow you to make the required adjustments. The included shock spanner wrench is specially shaped to fit the shocks you purchase which makes tuning it a snap!
The OEM shocks for the 1999 Kawasaki Vulcan 1500 Nomad measure 13" eye-to-eye. Choosing any shock that's shorter would, obviously, lower your bike. With regard to have the bike still right, you should seriously also consider Progressive Fork Lowering Kit as well. In doing so, you retain the bike's stock steering geometry and the way the bike handles would not change at all. We always recommend that, whenever you lower the rear, you also lowers the front of the bike as well. Progressive's Fork Lowering Kit has everything you need to adjust for this in that kit.
I am about 5'8" and weigh 230 pounds. Would this shock be right for me? If not what would you recommend?
In the case of the 2013 S40 Suzuki's stock suspension, you'll find that these shocks are s significant improvement over what came with the bike. Based upon the information you've provided, you'd want to get the shocks with heavy-duty springs.You'll find the bike rides a whole lot better with the heavy-duty shocks installed.
The 1983 FLHTC came with 13" long shocks from the factory.
I want to order a set of these shocks but not sure what size I need. Would like to go a little lower than stock...
The 2006 model year Harley FLHRC Road King Custom shipped from the factory with shocks that measure 13" at full length. Also, regardless of the shock length you choose, be sure to choose the correct spring rate for your riding needs. If you ride two-up at least 50% of the time, and/or with a full load of luggage, you will want to opt for heavy-duty shocks. This also holds true if you weigh over 220lbs. If those conditions don't apply to your needs, then the standard-rate shocks will more than be up to the task.
So long as you weigh less than 220lbs, the standard rate shocks from either, the 412 or 430 series will be ideal for your needs. If you weigh more than that, go for the heavy-duty shocks.
As for the differences between the 412 and 430 Street Glide Special shocks, the main difference between them, other than appearance, is the internal valving and the way you adjust spring preload. On the 412 shocks, you need to use the included shock spanner wrench to adjust preload. The 430 series shocks can have their preload adjusted by hand, which makes setting proper static sag very easy. The valving differences are quite significant. 430 shocks use a floating piston to separate the shock fluid from the pressurized gas chamber. In doing so, damping action is improved over the 412 shocks. And that's not to say the 412s are bad - they're great, especially when compared to stock. 412 shocks use a standard working piston instead of the floating design.
No matter what you choose, and especially since you've updated the fork springs, you'll find that the bike handles a lot better than it did in stock configuration. It'll track true through the
The 2008 XL1200N shipped from the factory with shocks that are 11" long.
I plan on a heavy duty application cuz me and the woman are thickish. I've never liked air shock handling & they bottom out a lot. Recommendations???
The 2003 Road King Classic shipped with shocks measuring 13" long, but you can select shocks in any length that we have available to fit your machine without the worry of bottoming so long as you select the proper spring rate. If you're over 220lbs solo, and/or plan on riding two-up at least 50% of the time, you'll want to go with heavy-duty shocks. And, unless you want to lower your bike to make it easier to reach the ground when stopped, we recommend that you stay with the original shock length of 13". In this way, the bike's steering geometry will remain unchanged.
One thing you'll want to strongly consider as well, in order to keep the bike balanced, is to replace the fork springs as well. With the front and rear end of the bike tuned the same, wallowing and bouncing about won't be a problem. We have a Progressive Heavy Duty Fork Spring Kit that'll take care of that without issue.
So long as you were to go with heavy-duty rear shocks in stock length and HD fork springs, your risk of bottoming will be minimized. Compared to air shocks, the 412 series doesn't get harsh as you push through its stroke - they get firm, yes - but it's a nice, progressive push with no big hit near the end.
Unfortunately, the shortest shocks Progressive makes to fit the 2003 VTX1300S measure 11.5" - so they wouldn't be as low as you want. The reason Progressive doesn't offer shocks that are shorter than that is due to clearance issues. That is to say, all of the shocks they sell won't cause the wheel to rub against the rear fender, or any other part of the bike, if the shocks were to bottom out.
Still, while half-an-inch may not sound like much, the difference is noticeable. Furthermore, if you were to combine that with a set of Progressive Lowered Fork Springs, you may find the bike to be more of your liking.
Riding over 400# or what which recommend for heavy riders?
There's really no limitation, per se, but you'd certainly want to go with a set of shocks with a heavy-duty spring rate. This is due to the fact that Progressive recommends heavy-duty springs for solo riders over 220 lbs, or those that frequently ride two-up and/or with a full load of luggage.
Furthermore, you should strongly consider upgrading to a set of Progressive heavy-duty fork springs as well. In this way, the bike is balanced front, and rear. For your needs, this would certainly be better than the stock springs that come with any bike these items fit.
Progressive's 412 shocks have a five-position preload adjustment so you can set your bike's static sag. This is done using the included C-spanner wrench. Compression and rebound circuits are not adjustable.
So long as you're riding solo at least 50% of the time, your best bet would be the 13" long Nighthawk 750 shocks with standard duty springs. Heavy duty springs are recommended for those that weigh 220lbs. or more and/or those that travel two-up and/or with a full load of luggage at least 50% of the time.
Not yet answered.
Yes, they absolutely will. Simply choose the 1998 Honda GL1500CT Valkyrie Tourer from our fit guide and we'll get the correct shocks on their way to you. For reference, the OEM shocks on that bike measure 13 inches long. If you're looking to retain the original ride height, be sure to choose that length of shock.
That's correct, the 2004 Sportster 1200 Roadster shipped with 13" long shocks as stock. So, anything shorter than that is certainly going to help you out with getting the rear end closer to the ground.
The important thing to consider is spring rate. If you plan on riding two-up at least 50% of the time, or weigh more than 220 lbs. yourself, then go with the heavy-duty springs. Otherwise, choose the standard spring rate and, while it won't be ideal when riding two-up, it'll certainly be a much better ride than the original Sportster Roadster suspension!
In the case of the 2015 FLHX, it shipped from the factory with 12" long shocks, so the 11.5" shocks would only take a half inch out of the bike's height.The reason Progressive only offers shocks down to that length is because it's the shortest they can offer without risking the rear tire rubbing on the inside of the fender. That is to say, any shorter than that, and you run the risk of ruining the rear tire pretty quickly. While that may not sound like much, it may feel like quite a big difference.
By: Don S.
For your size, you'll certainly want to to use a set of heavy-duty shocks as they're specifically recommended for solo riders over 220lbs. As far as length is concerned, that's not nearly as important as spring rate - but it certainly wouldn't hurt to go with the longer shocks. That is to say, whatever length you choose, so long as you go with the heavy-duty spring rate, you'll find these to be a significant improvement in bottoming-resistance when compared to the OEM VTX1800 shocks.
The different spring rates on offer are not so much about ride quality alone, but rather, ride quality based upon the rider's weight. It's an often overlooked aspect of suspension - a bike will perform best, and be the most comfortable to ride, when spring rates are matched to the rider's needs.
If you spend most of your time riding solo, and weigh less than 220lbs, choose the standard rate springs as those will provide the mostc comfortable ride, most of the time, for you.
If you ride two-up at least half the time, and/or with a full load of luggage - or weigh more than 220lbs yourself, choose heavy-duty shocks as those will provide a smooth ride without the worry of harsh bottoming. Plus, the bike will feel more sure-footed and won't wallow as much through the corners. And, if you do go with heavy-duty shocks, take care of the front end with a set of Progressive Heavy-Duty fork springs.
The stock forks forks springs are generally a good match for standard duty shocks, but if you go with heavy-duty shocks, swapping out fork springs will give you the most comfortable, and confident ride you can find!
Shock length isn't as critical to bottoming resistance as the spring rate you choose. If you're riding two-up, you'll want to get a set of heavy-duty shocks. The shock length, on the other hand, is really down to preference. If you don't have a problem getting your feet down, we recommend that you stay with the stock length so as not to fuss with the bike's steering geometry. In the case of the '03 Electra Glide Classic's shock length, they came from the factory with 13" long shocks.
In your case, anything Progressive makes is going to be better than stock. Of this, I can promise you! The biggest factor for your needs is spring rate, and for that, you're going to need a set of shocks with a heavy-duty spring rate. Progressive recommends the heavy-duty rate for any solo rider over 220lbs. That alone, will provide a much better ride for your needs.
And don't forget to look after the front end as well. A set of Progressive heavy-duty fork springs will provide for a totally balanced bike. That is, the front and rear will act more in unison when the road gets rough.
By: Paul S.
With regard to spring rate, if you're riding solo more often than not, go with the standard rate springs. The shocks alone, you'll find, will be a significant improvement over the stock units whether you're riding solo or two-up. With regard to shock length, you'll want to go with the 11-1/2" long shocks as that'll get you closest to the height that you want.
Another thing you should consider, to get the maximum lowering amount possible without the risk of bottoming, is to match those shocks to a Progressive Fork Lowering Kit. With that, you'll get the best possible lowered ride for your bike since steering geometry won't be unaffected with a matched front end.
The 2005 Harley Road King Custom OEM shocks measure 13" long when the bike rolled off the assembly line. Now, compared to stock, even at the 11-1/2" length, you'll find the rear end of the bike to be much improved. Plus, Progressive doesn't make a set of shocks in which you're going to have to worry about bottoming out - so no worries there!
As far as spring rate is concerned, at your weight, standard rate shock will be ideal.
And finally, one thing to consider would be lowering the front end of the bike to match the rear. You can do this, easily, with a Progressive Fork Lowering Kit for the FLRSI. Aside from improving the overall ride quality of the bike, front and rear - when the front is lowered in concert with the rear, the bike's handling qualities will remain the same since steering geometry won't change. We strongly encourage all riders concerned about changes in handling to also add a set of lowered fork springs to along along with the new shocks.
Will these bolt right into a 1985 Honda Shadow VT700???
Yes, if you were to select the 1985 Honda VT700C Shadow 700 shocks from our fit guide, you'd receive the correct Progressive 412 Series shocks to bolt straight onto the '85 Shadow 700.
The OEM shock length for the 2006 Harley XL883C Custom is 11-1/2 inches.
For your needs, you'd want to go with a set of heavy-duty shocks. Progressive recommends heavy-duty rate springs for any solo rider over 220 lbs. With that set up, you'll find ride quality to be significantly better over the stock suspension components. And, while you're at it, you should consider matching the forks to the rear end of your bike for the best possible ride with a set of Progressive Heavy Duty fork springs. With the front and rear spring rates matched, you'll find the bike rides better than new!
Is the $269 for two shocks? If so, then I guess the air shock adjustment will be no more, is that correct? Also, if you and your rider have a combined weight on 340-350 lbs should I consider a different shock?
By: John P
For machines that come from the factory with two shocks, Progressive sells their 412 shocks in pairs, So, you'd receive two shocks with your order. As to your second question, yes you will lose the air shock adjustment functionality if you were to install these shocks on your machine as they do not have a provision for working with that system.
As far as weight is concerned, the heavy-duty spring rate shocks are the way to go for your particular riding needs. In fact, that's all Progressive offers to fit the Gold Wing Interstate. I can tell you, however, that even though you lose the air ride adjustment, you will find the rear end of the bike significantly improved upon the installation of these shocks, especially at the loadout you're referring to. After your first ride, yu'll wonder why you didn't install them sooner!
My wife weighs 130 lbs but does not ride very often. What setting do I use when she rides? Thanks
By: Harold C
Progressive standard spring rates are recommended for riders solo up to about 220 lbs. If you ride more than 50% of the time with a passenger heavy duty spring rate is recommended. As far as the preload adjustment is concerned for your weight at 165 you would be more to the low end on the preload. Normally there is 4-5 steps for adjustment you would want to be on 1 or 2 for your weight. With a passenger you may want to bump it up to 3 or 4 depending on your comfort level after riding. It may take some trial and error to find your exact settings as what may be comfortable for one rider may not suit the next.
All Progressive shocks come with the requisite hardware to fit them to any machine you select from our fit guide. You needn't purchase any additional parts to fit them to any bike we have in our compatibility list.
By: Jason S.
The 2007 FXDWG Dyna Wide Glide rolled off the assembly line with 12.6" long shocks.
All Progressive 412 shocks, regardless of the length you choose, will not allow the stock rear tire to come into contact with the rear fender. These shocks are specifically engineered for a worry-free installation.
Based upon your weight and occasional two-up riding, we recommend that you go with the standard rate shocks, again - in any length, to fit your machine.
I just have a small winshield and leather bags, BUT I'm a big guy, my Lovely is also, we are prolly way over cycles weight limit, when she's with. otherwise its just me.
If your bike currently has the OEM shocks on it, and you were to choose the heavy-duty spring rate from our fit guide, I can tell you that these shocks will be a great improvement over the original shocks! If you're riding around on a stock bike, you'll wonder why you didn't put these shocks on sooner!
I understand I need heavy duty springs I just use this bike for everyday around town driving or a short run trough the countryside, some roads with potholes but not to bad.
The stock length shocks on that bike measure 13-1/2" - so you'd want to retain that length unless you were really wanted to lower the rear end of the bike. Generally speaking, shock length as little to do with the bottoming - so long as the correct spring has been installed. With a heavy-duty rated spring on a 13-1/2" shock, you can expect a significantly improved ride on your bike on short runs or long runs!
Ah, you've got a funky front end there, sure sounds cool!
As far as the correct shock length, well - that's difficult to say. So long as you like the way the bike turns, then you'd want to get shocks that are of the same length. If it needs to speed up a bit, go longer than stock - if the opposite is preferred, go shorter than stock. Stock shocks on '88 Sportsters measured 12-1/2" long.
For spring rate, based upon your information, go with standard rate springs.
Other than that, as far as the shocks fitting, that won't be an issue. You will find that, no matter what length you choose, the rear end will feel like it holds the road much better than it did with the stock kit!
By: warren c
2006 Street Glides were fitted with 13" long shocks at the factory.
As far as spring rate goes, if you're riding solo at least 50% of the time, the standard spring rate will do well for your needs. Heavy-duty shocks are recommended for riders over 220 lbs., or those that ride with a full load out of gear and/or a passenger at least 50% of the time.
All Progressive shocks are built to work on any machine with a stock size tire without running the risk of the tire rubbing against the inside of the fender.
That is to say, no matter what shock length you choose from our fit guide, you don't have to worry about the tire rubbing, so long as the tire size is the same as stock.
If you're using an 11" Progressive, bottoming, whether riding solo or two-up, won't be an issue as all Progressive shocks are designed to work with an otherwise stock bike without having to worry about that. And that goes for every length of shock we have to fit your bike.
Next up comes the question of spring rate. If you expect to ride two-up at least 50% of the time (doesn't sound like it with "here and there") weigh 220 lbs.+ on your own, and/or plan on riding with a full loadout of luggage at least 50% of the time, then you'd want to choose shocks with a heavy-duty spring rate. If not, go with the standard spring rate.
I can say with full confidence that, no matter what length or spring rate you choose, these shocks will be a great improvement when compared to stock. You will certainly notice a difference!
When I ride and hit bumps sometimes it feels like I bottom out and I do ride with a passenger so I would need the heavy duty option.
You wouldn't necessarily need to go with shocks that are longer than stock, but would certainly want to choose heavy-duty springs as that's the main determining factor when it comes to the risk of bottoming-out. With a proper spring rate, your bottoming problem won't be a problem anymore.
The OEM shocks on the 2007 FLHTCU measured 13" long. If you're interested in keeping the bike at the stock setup, then choose the 13" shocks.