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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys,

Sorry for all the pics, but it makes it a bit easier to explain. I've just replaced my fork oil, and I don't think it has been done since 2000, and I know why. You need a special tool to loosen the forks top part. I didn't want to wait 3 weeks to get one from Kawa, so here goes. Fork oil change quick and dirty :evil:

You will need a Ratchet Strap hanging from the roof, pice of binding wire, 31mm Socket, 13mm Flat Spanner, 17mm Flat Spanner, Vernier Caliper, Shifting, wire coat hanger and then my special fork tool :lol:

Before removing the forks from the bike, loosen the top caps with the 31mm socket. It's a bitch to get it loose when you've removed the forks. Now take out the forks, and loosen the top cap and slide down the outer tube. Using the 17mm spanner, turn the pre-load adjuster all the way out.

Now hang the fork from the ratchet strap in the roof. IT has to be about 5cm from the floor. You will see there's holes in the tube that you've exposed now, but they don't go through, and you cannot put too much pressure on them. With a phillips screwdriver push down on this tube and you'll see it will go down a bit. You need to put your back into it. On the one side of the fork inner there's a small hole. So get past it, and stick a screwdriver in there to give you some room to work with. See Step 1 picture. Now cut up the coathanger, and tie it to the bottom mudguard bracket, and to the end of the tool as in the pic.

Now you've got the leverage to push the inner tube all the way down, and you'll see a nut. Yup, that spring is serious business. Once past the nut stick the 13mm flat spanner in there below the nut to keep the tube there while you loosen the nut and the top cap. See Step 2 pic (I jammed the tool in there to get a better pic). Now take off the top cap and trying to keep the release a bit controlled release the tool. On my first one I thought of just letting it go and running away while the spring kills everything in the garage, but it's not that bad. :banghead:

Now you can take out the thin aluminium push rod in the centre plunger, and remove the inner tube, washer and spring. Now you can dump the old smelly oil. Use the top cap to push and pull the plunger to get all the gunk out. After draining, I usually flush it with about 100mm of fork oil just to get the last of the gunk and then drain it again.

Fill up the fork to 101mm from the top with the fork compressed, spring out and without the aluminium rod. Slowly pump the plunger again just to get all the air out everywhere. In the manual they say no less than 10 times. SO count them. This is important :nana:

Now put back the spring and washer. Slowly push them in otherwise you'll be wiping oil off the ceiling. Replace the thin push rod. Pull up on the plunger and tie some bining wire to it below the nut, and fasten it to the ratchet strap. DO a good job 'cause you'll be putting a lot of strain on this wire.
See Step 3 and Step 4.

Now hoist the fork up again by the wire, and then using the tool again, push down on the inner tube to get it past the nut again. Stop it again with the 13mm spanner. Now I can't find any specs anywhere of where the nut must sit when tightening as you'll re-adjust everything anyway after installation, so I bottom the nut, and then put back the fork top plug. You need to tighten it pretty well. They say 27nm in the manual. Again, just release the tool, and make sure that little plate that stops the tube is centred. Now screw the outter tube onto the top plug :mfclap:

Now install them back on the bike making sure the top of the outter tube is flush with the handlebar tripple clamp. Fasten it, and then tighten the top fork caps. Now reset all the fork settings to factory. This is where you will need the vernier caliper. This is very precise work. Turn the pre-load adjuster in so that it sticks out 14mm. The whole thing. Not just the rings. Now turn the small screw in the middle all the way in, and then turn it 7 clicks out. The bottom adjustment screw should not have been affected, but for good luck turn it all the way in, and then 7 clicks out as well.

Voila. Put the bike back together, and rock it while holding the front brake. Awesome difference hey.

Now for the tool, I've attached the plan and a pic of what it looks like. I've used some 5mm Flatbar I had lying around to make it, so use what you've got. The most imortant thing is the gap in each bar, and then the gap between each bar. Make sure it's nice and round. I had a socket with the correct diameter to check it with. If it's got spots sticking out, it will burr the inner rod. It's not a train smash, but I don't like my stuff scratched.

Go forth and drain some forks :crazyloco:
 

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I have another method that is easier.

Undo top cap

Pour out the oil

Pump the fork several times.

Leave the fork upside down overnight to drain.

Fill with the specified amount of oil.

Finished.


Why would you want to completely disassemble the fork to change the oil ?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Why would you want to completely disassemble the fork to change the oil ?
I like to make sure the oil level is exactly the same on each fork. I've had it before where the two forks had different levels and it really affects the handling a lot.
 
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