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Forks replacement, any hints?

Discussion in 'Technical and Troubleshooting Torque' started by ceebee, Nov 4, 2009.

  1. Gday
    Crashed my GS500e after swerving out of path of a stray tip truck on a narrow windy road in January 09. Unfortunately no insurance, and truck driver denies being at fault (the prick!), so it's up to me to fix it all up by myself.
    Impacted into a tree at about 60km/hr, forks broke and twisted back into exhaust, denting exhaust and front wheel warped. Thankfully no other damage (apart from my pride).
    Have sourced replacement forks off ebay, and going to obtain myself a workshop manual. Will read thru manual carefully before commencing the replacement / rebuild. I am a welder/fabricator by trade and experienced in assembling machinery. But never done a forks replacement before. Wondering if anyone out there can offer any useful advice or hints in regard to this type of work??
    Cheers guys!

  2. Firstly there is a pro-forma fro a letter of demand on this web site. Use it as it might call the truck drivers bluff.

    Secondly a fork replacement is easy, but you should replace the steering head bearing if you have had a wack. This is a little harder and requires some careful grinding and/or heating of the lower bearing seat.

    there was a thread few weeks ago about that.
  3. Fork replacement is easy you shouldnt have troubles with it. Just make sure that if you bent your forks the lower triple tree is not damaged or warped as well and as ibast said probably should replace the steering head bearings which is a little more tricky due to the press fit into the steering head.

    Try and do all this before putting your exhaust headers on as you can then support the front of the bike by resting the engine on a stand. Otherwise you have to hang the frame from the roof as i did and is a bit more difficult.

    Good luck.
  4. thanks fellas,
    sounds pretty straightforward. I was more concerned with finer things like making sure the fork legs had the same amount of protrusion above the tree clamps to ensure correct wheel axle alignment. Or is there some other way of ensuring this? Cheers.
  5. The workshop manual should cover it - mine just says "Slide the fork leg up through the lower and upper clamps until the upper surface of the front fork inner tube is even with the upper surface of the stem head." If there is a gap, I'd just measure it with a depth gauge.

    Providing nothing is bent, and the legs are even in the clamps, the front wheel aligns itself when you tighten the axle bolt (at least it did on my bike, before something was bent). Check with a string line or something given it's been crashed, though.
  6. I agree with the others. Nothing particularly difficult here. My fork legs have grooves around them to give the correct 'depth' for the legs, and yours may differ, but it shouldn't be hard to align them. You could also install the axle, which should keep the square as you slide them up through the clamps. And just to re-iterate some of the others, check your triple clamps too. If you can't slide both tubes into top and bottom easily, one of them is bent. Replacing the lower steering stem bearing is one of those jobs where the effort expended seems to bear no relationship to the end result. Exceeded only by an attempt to replace the swing arm bearings :-s

    So. No biggie. :)