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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I did my own seals on a '03 1000. I weigh 200lbs. For oil i used BelRay 15wt fork oil. I did not know how to measure how much air space there was so i put a total of 550cc of oil in each leg. Did I over/under fill them??? Please help cause I ride this bike hard and want the suspension to work correctly. (Please don't tell me i should have taken it to a suspesion guy, i have limited funds and the seal was leaking very bad and i wanted to ride, lol) I just need to know the correct settings, i.e. oil wt., how much to put in each leg, and if at all possible a good place to start from on comp./rebound settings. I would have asked this earlier but i saw the seal was leaking a couple days ago and it was a spur of the monent thing to fix them yesterday. Thanks in advance!
 

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John...

A) 15wt is too heavy. Don't try to use oil weight to compensate for light springs. I'd go with 5 or 10 wt, tops.

B) Stock specs call for 509ml... 509cc. So... you WAY overfilled them.


If I were you, I'd drain the fork fluid & start from scratch with lighter stuff.

First make sure to fully bleed all air out of the cartridge... compress the fork fully, fill with enough oil to cover the top of the cartridge, and slowly pump the damping rod until you get all air out... you should feel strong, relatively even resistance all the way through each stroke, in & out. This may take a while - take your time.

Next, adjust your oil level. It's always more accurate to judge by level rather than volume. Compress the fork fully, compress the damping rod fully, leave the spring out. measuring from the top of the outer fork tube to the top of the oil in the forks, you're looking for 101mm (that's stock). you'd probably be better off experimenting with this level in the future - but we're sticking to basics here


you didn't mention it - but did you index your rebound adjusters before screwing the caps back on? If not - that's something you need to do too (quick check... see how many turns of adjustment you have on each rebound adjuster. are they even? How many turns of adjustment do you have?)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Lean Angle!

I'm still confused on a few things though (oil wt and cc's helped a lot though)

I did NOT have to remove the cap from the damping rod and i also did NOT have to remove the spring from the rod either. Let me explain what I did step by step so you know, and also to see if i did it the right way. I know i did at least the seal part right cause they are not leaking now, LOL

First I took the forks off.
Next I unscrewed the Cap from the top and drained the oil.
Then I turned the fork on its side and used a 8mm allen key to remove the bolt on the bottom of the forks (were the axle is)

By removing this bolt, i can then take the Cap, Damping Rod and Spring out of the fork as a whole unit! I also could then take the lower leg out of the upper leg. So i had three pieces then!

Then i replaced the seal

To re-assemble i slid the lower leg back into the upper leg, then flipped the tube over and re-inserted the spring/damping rod/Cap unit into the top.
I then replaced the 8mm allen at the bottom of the fork which holds the three pieces together.

so now i have a whole fork leg that is open at the top. I poured about 300cc of fluid into the fork and worked the cap/damping rod/spring up and down til it was stiffer and smooth (i thought i was bleeding the air out by doing this?!?!) then i added 250cc more and "bleeded" some more. When it felt nice and smooth, i slid the upper leg up to the cap and screwed the cap back on. I checked the reb and comp settings and they had not moved, I have the Rebound out 6 and the comp out 8 (both out from full clockwise/stiff)

So that is what i did, i realize now that i need to lower the fork oil, take about 40cc out. But i did not understand what you were saying about removing the spring and using JUST the damping rod to bleed the air out. I'm assuming that you mean that i need to disassemble the "Cap/Damping Rod/Spring" unit to do this. But my way seems faster and easier, but i don't know if it's doing it the right way and if its bleeding the air out correctly!!!

Thanks for all the help, sorry for the long post, hope its good for entertainment for some and informational for others, LOL
 

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you fucked up big time
(no shame in that, bro)

Here's the thing... with the cap in place, and the cartridge bolted in place, you can't fully compress & extend the damping rod, even with the fork collapsed. So when you're bleeding the cartridge, you're not using it's full range of motion, and almost surely aren't bleeding all the air out. The range of motion you ran through with the cap on could very well be smooth, but if you went further than the cap would allow - you'd realize it wasn't bled. That's a pretty serious problem right there. Not only will your damping be worthless and unpredictable, your oil level won't be correct.

When you do it right - you'll find it almost mandatory to use a tool that connects to the top of the damping rod allowing you to fully compress & extend the damping rod while bleeding. All you need is a length of bar stock and a nut that can thread over the top of the rod. I simply use the damping rod from a junk cartridge for this 'tool'

Plus - if you measure by oil level instead of by volume, you can't do it the way you're trying to, as the spring needs to be removed for measurement. I suppose you measure the oil level with the spring included if you did it the same all the time, and the spring never changed, but stock #s as well as nearly everyone else's assume no spring.

You pretty much need to start from scratch, John. You won't have to remove the cartridge, you can leave the allen head bolt in the bottom alone. But you are going to want to pull the caps, pull the springs, drain off at least some fluid (or better yet exchange it completely for lighter weight oil), properly bleed the cartridge, measure out the correct oil level, index the rebound adjusters, and close her back up.


Or you can send them to me and I'll hook you up for a nice price
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
HAHA, ok, thanks again, oh and no offense taken, you have to screw up sometimes to learn and I can take it, LOL!!! I would send them to you, but i prefer to do all my own work! This happens to be one of the things I don't know how to do, but I'm learning for future reference and so that I can get these things done right!

OK, it makes more sense now, I just need to open them up again and play some more, but I think I understand what you are saying! The only thing I'm still not understanding is what you mean by INDEXING the rebound clickers?!?! please explain if you could! Oh and to get the cap off, i don't need any special tools right? i just need to get a wrench on the rod to hold it while i spin the cap off, correct??? then the cap and spring will come off??? also, what do you use to measure oil height (air space) a skinny ruler??? and 100mm from the top of the tube should be right??? Thanks bro, you've been a big help already and i haven't even gotten back into the forks, i'll probably work on them over the weekend.
 
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