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So I have rebuilt my forks with Race Tech Gold Valve Emulators and new springs and went to reinstall on my bike and one fork is taller than the other. I cant see how this can be. I don't remember one fork being higher than the other in triple clamp but that is the only way I can see how this will go back together... What am I doing wrong. There is no way to put the axle through with 1/2" difference... Here are a few pics to show what I am dealing with..
The funny thing is the fork that has the Taller fork Lower is the Shorter one overall..



 

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Did you leave the top out spring out of one of them?
Also, on some bikes, like the 2nd gen SV, one fork leg is "deeper" below the axle. So if you just stand the legs up together that one will be longer. But the distance from the axle center line to the top is the same. Can't remember if the Strom is like this or not.
 

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When the axles line up, the tops should also line up. Something is wrong but I couldn't tell you exactly what. I don't know for sure if both fork tubes are the same. PM Rich Desmond.
 

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Doesn't seem quite right to me, but I'm not an expert on DL forks........ on the parts diagram everything is twins except the fork lowers. If you put the axle in both, then your tops (dust seals) should line up, but if your picture is correct, that would make your difference at the top worse..... so, next I would remove the top caps, springs and spacers to ensure they are the same length. While out, slide the inner tube down and back up until it hits a stop. Mainly you're trying to see what's different between the two if the tubes won't come up to equal height.... making assumptions that all is assembled correctly at the bottom, no missing parts or rebound springs, and that the damper rod and oil lock are properly together, both screws at the bottom went in the same amount, etc.
Slowly pump the fork tubes up and down in case there is trapped air (I am not sure what the gold valves will trap, nor if a hydraulic lock can even occur with them). I don't know how the gold valves go in these forks, but can you check if they are seated?
Hopefully you can figure it out at this point, as the tubes should be the same height I would think. IF they are now, put the springs, spacers and caps back on.......
You might need a helper to look at both forks at once, be aware of the oil level when moving the fork tubes up and down.........
 

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The right lower tube extends down farther to give room for the pinch bolt. Everything else should line up---top of the uppers, dust seals, axle holes. If they don't, you've mis-installed something.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for your help. I'm gonna pull them apart once again and make sure everything is installed properly. Should have taken this to a shop in the first place... What a PITA...
 

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Thanks for your help. I'm gonna pull them apart once again and make sure everything is installed properly. Should have taken this to a shop in the first place... What a PITA...
Really looks to me like the longer one (the one with more exposed tube) is missing the top out spring. Either that or the bushing and seal aren't seated.

You can test for the top out springs by trying to manually extend the fork. You should be able to pull it apart 6-7mm or so. If there's no give at all the top out spring is probably not there. Compare both legs, see if they feel different when you do that.
For the seal/bushing, pry the dust seal up and make sure the lock wire is seated in it's groove.
Either way, I'll bet the issue is with the longer fork leg.
 

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Could you have somehow trapped air in the fork somehow - perhaps when you were refilling the fork with oil, you didn't cycle the fork thru it's range a few times, to drive out any trapped air in the damper rods, before putting the caps on?
 

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Thanks everyone for all your help. I finally figured it out. I noticed it when I took the forks off the bike and was carrying it over to disassemble the forks and I was tipping the fork back and forth and I could hear the small top out spring moving back and forth up the fork tube. I put the spring in the bottom instead of dropping it in the top. I should have put the forks together first then dropped the spring in followed by the dampner.

Well the bike is all back together now but the forks are so tight they have less than an inch travel. I was told by Blair at SVRacing who I bought the parts from that I should put in 140mm of for oil when the fork is all the way compressed and before I installed the Gold Valve Emulator and springs. So I have exactly that amount but I have no fork travel. Does this mean to much oil or not enough? Also are the fork caps supposed to be so hard to put back on? It took all my strength to compress down the top cap to get it to thread on the fork. What a chore... Any help on helping figure out why I have no fork travel would be appreciated. I took the bike out and did a Front brake only stop and almost zero travel that's how I know they are not working right...
 

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Sounds like way too much preload. It should take very little force to overcome the spring and get the threads started. How did you determine the spacer length? When the fork was fully extended how high was the top of the spacer?
It should have been recessed down into the fork tube about 21-23mm.

Could also be too much oil. How did you measure oil level? The measurement should be from the top of the tube down to the surface of the oil, i.e. you're actually measuring the air gap. The measurement must be done with the spring and spacer removed (but the emulator installed) and the fork leg fully compressed. That last point is critical, if you measure with the fork extended you'll have way too much oil and the fork won't compress much.



Thanks everyone for all your help. I finally figured it out. I noticed it when I took the forks off the bike and was carrying it over to disassemble the forks and I was tipping the fork back and forth and I could hear the small top out spring moving back and forth up the fork tube. I put the spring in the bottom instead of dropping it in the top. I should have put the forks together first then dropped the spring in followed by the dampner.

Well the bike is all back together now but the forks are so tight they have less than an inch travel. I was told by Blair at SVRacing who I bought the parts from that I should put in 140mm of for oil when the fork is all the way compressed and before I installed the Gold Valve Emulator and springs. So I have exactly that amount but I have no fork travel. Does this mean to much oil or not enough? Also are the fork caps supposed to be so hard to put back on? It took all my strength to compress down the top cap to get it to thread on the fork. What a chore... Any help on helping figure out why I have no fork travel would be appreciated. I took the bike out and did a Front brake only stop and almost zero travel that's how I know they are not working right...
 
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Also are the fork caps supposed to be so hard to put back on? It took all my strength to compress down the top cap to get it to thread on the fork. What a chore... Any help on helping figure out why I have no fork travel would be appreciated. I took the bike out and did a Front brake only stop and almost zero travel that's how I know they are not working right...

In my case, after adding new springs to my shocks (set up for 225# rider), and installing a new spacer-it was all I could do to compress the the cap and get the threads started. Having a vice would have been helpful, but all I had was a thick leather glove, the floor and my strength. So-Yes.
 

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Also are the fork caps supposed to be so hard to put back on? It took all my strength to compress down the top cap to get it to thread on the fork. What a chore... Any help on helping figure out why I have no fork travel would be appreciated. I took the bike out and did a Front brake only stop and almost zero travel that's how I know they are not working right...

In my case, after adding new springs to my shocks (set up for 225# rider), and installing a new spacer-it was all I could do to compress the the cap and get the threads started. Having a vice would have been helpful, but all I had was a thick leather glove, the floor and my strength. So-Yes.
I read on the sonic springs website that with stiffer springs the spacer length should be about 1/2 or 3/4 of an inch shorter overall, because the stiffer spring compresses less (sag will be different with the stiffer spring)

Link - http://www.sonicsprings.com/catalog/damper_rod_forks_tech_article.php

I'm currently looking to replace my spacers to the correct length so....I'll post info here as I go along.

Regards,
Vish

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