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Fork Rebuild: Any Advise?

Old 07-09-2013, 03:28 PM
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Fork Rebuild: Any Advise?

I've looked around the forum and haven't found any do's or don'ts about fork rebuilds. I will be following the write up Mr. Daughtry has on his website. I have the kit from DMr, and the fluid he recommended. Any first hand mess ups that I can pull from your experience to avoid? Any help or sharp comments welcome.
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Old 07-09-2013, 04:34 PM
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I did a little write up on my spring swap. Get everything very clean and keep it that way while you work. That's my best advice.
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Old 07-09-2013, 04:34 PM
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Originally Posted by KCCO View Post
I've looked around the forum and haven't found any do's or don'ts about fork rebuilds. I will be following the write up Mr. Daughtry has on his website. I have the kit from DMr, and the fluid he recommended. Any first hand mess ups that I can pull from your experience to avoid? Any help or sharp comments welcome.
Best recommendation Stay local or do it yourself.
After that, I really prefer to use a fork seal driver and a seal bullet, though you will read from some that do without.. Im just not that lucky... so i use the tools.
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Old 07-09-2013, 04:37 PM
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I'm doing the work myself and I forgot to add that I also have the factory manual and will be following that. The fork seals are clean not leaking and "new" according to the PO, should I still put new ones in? Ill read Wolverines post tonight! Thank you for the advise.
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Old 07-09-2013, 05:42 PM
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My tip would be to loosen off the preload and rebound adjusters to the max first while on the bike. Also loosen but do not remove the top cap. And if your planning on removing all the insides then again loosen but do not remove the hex head bolt at the base of the fork legs. Do these all while still mounted on the bike or you will be clamping you forks in a vice to remove them.

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Old 07-09-2013, 05:57 PM
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Forks are already off. I had a few min to spare after the stand came in. I remembered all of those except the hex at the bottom, whoops, thanks for the heads up. The only hitch I have had so far was not Unbolting the calipers before trying to remove the tire.... Too used to dirt bikes haha.
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Old 07-09-2013, 10:13 PM
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If you don't have an actual fork seal driver take an old seal and cut a small section out of it. Then use it to drive the new seal in. This will keep you from messing up the new seals.
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:06 AM
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Are you just changing springs and the length of preload spacers or are you installing Jamie's compression and rebound valves too? In any case, unless it's been done recently, I'd change the bushings too. With 56,000 miles on the bike and considering how rarely most owners change fork fluid, they're probably long overdue for replacement.
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:24 AM
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I am installing his valving along with the springs and spacers. Which bushings are you referring to? Also,if the fork seals are clean and good should I replace them? They are not weaping. I know it comes down to better be safe than have to pull the front end off again, but I only have 3 months left on the bike before it gets stored for basics.
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Old 07-10-2013, 12:20 PM
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There's a parts diagram for the front fork on www.ronayersmotorcycles.com. There are Teflon coated bushings at the top of the slider and at the bottom of the fork tube. They are parts 8 and 9 on the diagram.
The bushing at the top of the slider comes out when you pull the fork tube out of the slider. The Teflon coating on the bushing wears away. Wear is accelerated by the lubricating quality of fork oil breaking down and by debris accumulating in the fork oil. Assessing wear is dealt with in the shop manual.
In regard to the fork seals, the better approach is to replace the seals with OEM or better (talk to Jamie) when you have the forks apart. That being said, if the seals are fresh and there are no leaks, I'd reuse the seals.
If you're changing valving, I'd use a digital camera to record every aspect of the disassembly and assembly of the cartridge. I'd use a digital caliper to measure each shim before I stacked it on the valve. The stock rebound valve is peened onto the damper rod. You'll need a file to remove the peening. A thread file or die should be used to clean up the threads after you've removed the stock rebound valve. You may need a 1/4" drive torque wrench to torque the nut that retains the rebound valve on the damper rod. Please check with Jamie.

Last edited by comedo; 07-10-2013 at 06:13 PM.
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Old 07-10-2013, 01:54 PM
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This shall be more of a learning experience than I expected... Thank you all for the help and advise. I will be starting the actual fork disassembly tonight. I have a feeling I will be calling Jamie throughout the rebuild. Nothing like learning while doing; right?
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Old 07-11-2013, 03:02 PM
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I will sart a how to thread later today or tomorrow and I have completed the full disassembely IAW the shop manual. How do I access the valving? That is where I am stuck at now.... I have an Email into Jamie, but also figured I'd check here too, you are all a wealth of knowledge compared to me!
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Old 07-11-2013, 04:22 PM
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Now that you wont find in the manual. At the base of the cartridge knock off the silver foot, it only held on by stiction, then Use the hex bolt that you unscrewed from the base of the fork leg and screw this into the base of the cartridge and give it a gentle tap so it pushes the inside up inside the cartridge a few cm's. You will then see a circlip type clip thingy that you can pick out. It's fiddly and be careful that it don't spring out on the garage floor and get lost. Once this is removed you can then slide the insides including the valves out.

Pictures speak louder than words.

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Old 07-11-2013, 05:08 PM
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Thank you! Beautiful description.
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Old 07-12-2013, 11:37 AM
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Comedo, I brought the stanchion and fork tube to my local show to have them put back together (went one step too far) but it gave me the chance to inspect the bushings, they were within specs. Thanks for the heads up though. I wouldn't of thought of them as a wear item.
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Old 07-12-2013, 03:25 PM
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Something of a warning to anyone reading this: gaining access to the valving parts is only just the beginning. In fact, it is what comes after that where problems most often arise. Errors are not easy to detect and if they exist would result in an unsafe motorcycle. Experience is very important when replacing valving on suspension components.
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Old 07-12-2013, 03:33 PM
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I've done quite a few fork seals and very rarely do the bushings need to be replaced. If you do go with new seals ONLY get factory Honda seals. There are none better and any of the cheap lifetime guarantee seals are junk. Stay far far away from them.
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Old 07-12-2013, 03:51 PM
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Originally Posted by GTS View Post
I've done quite a few fork seals and very rarely do the bushings need to be replaced. If you do go with new seals ONLY get factory Honda seals. There are none better and any of the cheap lifetime guarantee seals are junk. Stay far far away from them.
While I will agree somewhat.. you miss the point that not not all non Honda seals are created equal.

I won't use the allballs, Moose, ect branded seals.. but SKF fork seals are not in the same junk class as those other aftermarket offerings.

OEM are a good option,,, but if you're looking for something better,, Look at the SKF offering for the specific bike you're working on.
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Old 07-12-2013, 09:06 PM
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One fork done and ready to put back on the bike. Went to tear down the second one and the bottom allen head bolt is stripped and just spinning.... it will have resistance for part of the turn then go free till the resistance hits again. I do not believe that is is the assembly spinning in the fork tube as I assembled the spring, washers, spacer, collar, and fork cap back on to apply as much pressure as possible. So it's going to the shop tomorrow to be dealt with, I do not want to run the risk of messing it up. On the bright side I had time to get a new front tire, Mich PP3, So that is an up side to the night. We will see how it pairs with the PR3 on the back.
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Old 07-13-2013, 01:29 AM
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Originally Posted by E.Marquez View Post
While I will agree somewhat.. you miss the point that not not all non Honda seals are created equal.

I won't use the allballs, Moose, ect branded seals.. but SKF fork seals are not in the same junk class as those other aftermarket offerings.

OEM are a good option,,, but if you're looking for something better,, Look at the SKF offering for the specific bike you're working on.
Usually, but not always, the OEM's are SKF... Sometimes the OEM's skimp...
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Old 07-13-2013, 05:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Tweety View Post
Usually, but not always, the OEM's are SKF... Sometimes the OEM's skimp...
Yes, and no..

The OEM seals for the VTR I have bought are made by SKF likely (primary Japanese MC manufacture supplier).. but are not the same as the latest generation SKF seals available. Or at least that is what i have found with dozens of dirt bike forks I've used and compared seals on..

I've only used the aftermarket SKF seals in dirt bikes so far..... and very happy with them..
Lets see how they do on a street bike.
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Old 07-13-2013, 06:13 PM
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And it's unstuck, for the fee of a six pack, the internals are out, fork tube and internals cleaned and new bolt in hand... I guess you don't have to have a wife that works at a dealership to get a free mount and balance or some cheap labor will continue tonight.
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Old 07-13-2013, 10:27 PM
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Forks are back on and sag is set! I'll write up the "how to" with pictures and all, submit it to Jamie for review; and only upon his approval will it be posted on here. I do not want to unintentionally endanger another rider.

On a more jovial note I will be doing a short ride tomorrow and a more in depth "review" you can say on Thursday.
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Old 07-17-2013, 08:23 PM
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Did a test ride today and I must say I am a believer. The change in the bike is amazing! Thank you to all who offered input. A special thanks to Jamie for the detailed information and very quick responses. Sag set no with no issues and the valving feels great! The bike no longer dives into corners or under moderate braking. Now the hard decision... to get the F4i converted shock or not? Again thank you to you all and especially Jamie.
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Old 07-17-2013, 10:16 PM
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Dude of course you get the shock!
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Old 07-18-2013, 05:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Tweety View Post
Usually, but not always, the OEM's are SKF... Sometimes the OEM's skimp...
Originally Posted by E.Marquez View Post
Yes, and no..

The OEM seals for the VTR I have bought are made by SKF likely (primary Japanese MC manufacture supplier).. but are not the same as the latest generation SKF seals available. Or at least that is what i have found with dozens of dirt bike forks I've used and compared seals on..

I've only used the aftermarket SKF seals in dirt bikes so far..... and very happy with them..
Lets see how they do on a street bike.

Just to clarify, the OEM seals are made by a company called NOK.
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Old 07-18-2013, 05:42 AM
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Originally Posted by JamieDaugherty View Post
Just to clarify, the OEM seals are made by a company called NOK.
I have seen both in the OEM bags from Honda on different bikes, but both are equally good, so no matter really... And I'd say you have seen more of them than me...
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Old 01-03-2014, 11:14 AM
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Pictures

Hi is the some pictures of the how it should look?? I have received components from Jamie today, Itīs difficult to send fork to US from Sweden so I have to do the replacement mi self.
thanks
in Advance
best regards
Tomas
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Old 01-03-2014, 11:22 AM
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Your parts were delivered already assembled in the order they go. Just replace your exiting stock parts with the new ones and you should be all set. Shoot me an email at [email protected] if you run into any problems.
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Old 01-03-2014, 11:41 AM
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Originally Posted by JamieDaugherty View Post
Your parts were delivered already assembled in the order they go. Just replace your exiting stock parts with the new ones and you should be all set. Shoot me an email at [email protected] if you run into any problems.
That ladies and gentlemen (and the rest of you as well) is called service, and the reason Jamie has a backlog of work......
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