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Bearcat
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Discussion Starter #1
My bike has about 36k miles on it now and I was wondering about how often would you do a tear down for things like greasing the fork and swing arm bearings. Also how often oils it be advisable to change the oil in the forks and posibly rear shocks. I've been looking up how to's on all of this and it seemed like in every instance it's done simply becouase the bike is being rebuilt anyway. I was wondering how often preventive matince should be done on these things to minimize don time in the future.
 

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There's probably an interval in the manual for the forks, but I know of 30-40yr old bikes that have never had the forks serviced.

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1986 VN750
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If the forks have never been touched, I'd just go ahead and rebuild them and slap in some Progressive springs while you are at it. It seems to make a big difference to me in regards to ride comfort. It never hurts to do preventative maintenance when you have the time and money; you'll just thank yourself later.
 

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Bearcat
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135 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the feedback.

What about pulling her apart for the stealing and swing arm bearings. Any ideas on when it would be a good idea to give thoes bearings a good repacking. In my experience its Easyer to grease what ya got than try and replace bearings and races.

Also would there be any outher serviceable bearings on the bike that I don't know about? Outher than the motor, with runs fine, and the drive train, all checked and lubed up, i don't see many outher moving parts on the bike. Then agine it's the one that you didn't know about that gives you problems down the road.
 

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There's probably an interval in the manual for the forks, but I know of 30-40yr old bikes that have never had the forks serviced.

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yeah and after 40 years the fork oil smells like putrid cat crap, and looks about the same.

it's easy to do... you can change the fork oil with forks on the bike. unless the seals are leaking I would leave them alone. use transmission fluid, it's much cheaper. just KNOWING I don't have putrified cat poop in my front forks makes me feel better ;) the stuff really does get that bad. even changing the seals is an easy job.

word of advice: wait for winter! then go crazy with new fluids all around! bleed that brake too! spline lube and steering neck are good to do as well. coolant flush and fill.

ride safe!
 

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Bearcat
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135 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
I've already done most of the major things this spring. I ride year round so theirs no off season for me to do a major tare down. I usaly stock up on parts and wait till I got a day or 2 off when I don't have anywhere I need to go. I had never thought of trans fluid for the forks, then again I've never worked on them befor. I got 36k on my ride and the seals are good, just would like to change the fluid befor I have problems. I know the forks have drain plugs built into them. I haven't been able to download the manual onto my iPod so I haven't really looked about how to change the fork oil yet. I was just wondering when it would be a good idea as to a interval on when to change it. I try to keep my bike in top shape since I depend on it for a daily driver.
 

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Bearcat
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135 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Hay thanks for the link:). Once I figure out how much to put into the forks ill use dex2 ATF for my forks. My bikes all about budget.
 

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yeah and after 40 years the fork oil smells like putrid cat crap, and looks about the same.
Well I didn't say it would be good on a steak.
 

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I think fork maintenance is not taken very seriously by so many people. maybe someone thinks "well they don't leave a puddle so why bother". hmmm now, God forbid, put yourself into a scenario where a hard emergency brake is needed. your front brakes account for what, 70% +/- of the bikes ability to stop... emergency stops are bad enough... we all have had 'em if riding long enough... your life could possibly depend someday on your right fingers squeezing the lever real real hard... a good tire that is properly inflated is important... good brake pads and rotor are important... a properly bled system is important... to me, having a front end that won't collapse under extreme braking is equally important... it can happen in the blink of an eye... be safe out there and keep your forks in good shape! hopefully you will never need to test them under extremes... but it's much better to be prepared... so many people out there now texting and driving, watching movies on phones and car stereos... it would really be a sad thing to have someone's life lost over something that should have been routine maintenance. it's already dangerous out there... no sense taking chances on something that should be a routine and simple task.

spockster, I am not saying this to YOU personally, and I mean no offense to anyone at all... but a lot of y'all are really spoiled with the pretty low maintenance bikes of nowadays. dang dudes bump all that stuff about taking your scooter to the dealer or to the shop! bump all that stuff about not learning what makes your bike go! get dirty! dig in! back in the day, it used to be every other sunday was wrench day! adjust valves, file points, set dwell angle, lube chain, add water to battery, check spokes, yeah it was a lot of work to maintain a bike but it wasn't all bad... man, you got to KNOW your ride!

fork maintenance shouldn't be anything that anyone with simple mechanical skills and basic tools can't accomplish (and again spockster I don't mean YOU, I know there are a lot of lurkers out there reading and they should learn as well as be entertained). there are youtube vid's for fixing anything you can imagine. in fact I will add a video of a fork rebuild when I get a chance. I like making youtube repair how-to video's, I try and give back something once in a while. last week I didn't know doodly squat about repairing a gas stove... stove is 6 months old and under warranty... do I want the geek squad in my kitchen? heck no! do I want some 18 year old kid (and no offense to all the 18 y/o's I was once too haha) at some dealership taking my forks apart? or some dude who got in a blow out with his wife and got all liquored up from vodka and came to work anyways and is now putting the forks on your bike upside down? (no offense to hot heads or vodka drinkers hehe). anyways if ya don't know how to repair something, learn. I would much rather be rolling down the road on something that was repaired and reassembled by my own dang hands... not some liquor soaked hot head geek squad loving dork!

ok, rant over... :blah:

keep the shiny side up, bro!
 
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