Ralph Fer­rand fin­ishes the forks.

Classic Motorcycle Mechanics - - CONTENTS -

Time to fin­ish of those pesky forks on this very spe­cial big-bore Kawasaki Z1325cc mon­ster!

In last month’s re­port on the build sta­tus of the su­perla­tive, gar­gan­tuan big block Zed I’ve been build­ing for a pa­tient Welsh­man, I stripped, ser­viced and re­stored to fac­tory con­di­tion all the com­po­nents of the Gixxer up­side-down forks adorn­ing the front end. I was some­what un­easy with dis­man­tling the up­side-down forks, par­tic­u­larly given the warn­ings I had re­ceived from fel­low Lud­dites. As it turned out, other than need­ing some spe­cial tools (which I nicked from Biker’s Tool­box’s stock) it was far less grief than I was led to be­lieve and I wouldn’t be overly con­cerned about re­build­ing an­other pair: by us­ing the right tools! Les­son for us all there: this month I’ll be re­build­ing the forks I stripped. Be­fore start­ing the re-assem­bly, I took a tape mea­sure to the main fork spring to en­sure that over the years they hadn’t been neg­a­tively af­fected by the rav­ages of time and lost their mojo. The min­i­mum length, ac­cord­ing to the boys at Ha­ma­matsu, should be no less than 266mm (10.5in) and the cus­tomer’s springs had not lost their vi­tal­ity so did not need re­plac­ing. All the seals, bear­ings etc. had to be fit­ted to the new stan­chion prior to assem­bly. Be­fore at­tach­ing the dust seal and hy­draulic seal I al­ways put a bit of poly­thene bag over the end of the leg just in case there are any sharp edges that could po­ten­tially dam­age the seal lips. First on is the dust seal fol­lowed by the spring clip and the main hy­draulic seal. I usu­ally wipe a thin film of red rub­ber grease or sus­pen­sion fluid to the in­side of these seals to ease their path. Ei­ther is fine and which is used de­pends on which is clos­est to hand! Af­ter the seal comes the large washer that sep­a­rates the seal from the out­side bear­ing which it­self is next. Lastly I slid on the up­per, in­side bear­ing, which lo­cates on a ma­chined groove in the top of the stan­chion.

It is worth not­ing that the in­ner and outer bear­ings use a Te­flon-based anti-fric­tion ma­te­rial that is eas­ily scratched so care is re­quired when in­stalling them. I clamped the outer fork leg in the soft jaws of my bench vice and rubbed some sus­pen­sion fluid around the in­side of the tube with a gloved hand. Al­ways wear ni­trile or sim­i­lar gloves as none of the flu­ids in­volved with mo­tor­cy­cle me­chan­ics will do your skin any good. Yes, gloves cost money, but what price new skin? The stan­chion was then slid into the open­ing of the outer leg and al­lowed to slide in as far as it wished to go. Next came the outer bear­ing which went in with­out too much fuss fol­lowed by the big washer. The fork seal was next to de­scend the pole, but this will not go in with­out

Care­fully slid­ing the fork seal onto the fork stan­chion us­ing some soft poly­thene sheet to pre­vent the seal lips get­ting dam­aged on any sharp edges.

Old stan­chion and the new one ready to have the in­ner bear­ing fit­ted as on the orig­i­nal.

Us­ing a torque wrench to tighten up the damper bolt to 29lb-ft.

The damper-rod on its way into the fork.

Slip­ping the up­per, in­ner bear­ing over the top of the in­ner fork tube.

Slid­ing the lower, out­side bear­ing over the stan­chion.

The bear­ing in place in the re­cess ma­chined in the fork tube.

Re­fit­ting the dust cover is eas­ier with the uni­ver­sal seal driver.

Here, we are re­in­stalling the seal re­tain­ing clip.

Us­ing a uni­ver­sal seal driver to en­cour­age the fork seal into its home.

RTV Sil­i­cone is not spec­i­fied by Mr Suzuki to seal the bolt, but bit­ter ex­pe­ri­ence has taught me that not us­ing it can lead to leaks. Thread lock is spec­i­fied.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.