Fork Seal Savers?


17 replies to this topic
  • masterraptor

Posted September 14, 2010 - 08:02 AM

#1

Are the seal savers needed? I have some friends that say you have to have them, others that say they cause more damage than they prevent. I don't see them on a lot of race bike? Whats the verdict?

  • OUTERLIMITS

Posted September 14, 2010 - 08:10 AM

#2

I have had them on my bike since new and no problems with the seals yet. I don't believe they can do anything but help keep the seals cleaner, but you will still need to clean under them to keep accumulated dirt out. It's cheap insurance.

  • WR450FGreg

Posted September 14, 2010 - 11:03 AM

#3

.
Mine have been great, the bike is still on it's original seals 2 years on.

Like OUTERLIMITS said, you just need to clean under them regularly.

I actually take mine off the forks and throw them in the wash with my riding gear!

Cheers,
Greg

  • woods-rider

Posted September 14, 2010 - 11:07 AM

#4

Not needed, but definately help. If you thoroughly clean around the seals after every ride you will probably be ok without them for a decent amount of time but they can't hurt.

  • YamaLink

Posted September 14, 2010 - 11:39 AM

#5

Many have great use for them. Just be sure to clean underneath sometimes and do not let hard water deposits sit on the fork tubes.

  • masterraptor

Posted September 14, 2010 - 02:58 PM

#6

.

I actually take mine off the forks and throw them in the wash with my riding gear!

Cheers,
Greg



Don't you have to take the Forks off to remove them? Your messn' with me, right? :ride:

  • Navaho6

Posted September 14, 2010 - 04:20 PM

#7

Don't want to hurt any feelings but Seal Savers cause added friction that hampers fork action. Manufacturers are trying to reduce friction (special coatings, etc) to get smoother, more responsive fork action. Added friction is the last thing you want. They may help improve seal life in certain conditions but it comes at the cost of performance.

Also, dirt that you don't see is dirt you don't think about cleaning out. You may have a tendency not to clean your seals as often, thinking that the seal savers are stopping all the dirt but they're not. They stop more of the big sand grains but the smaller stuff just collects on the inside embeds in the fabric. This is from experience. I tried them once and quickly realized that they were causing problems with fork action.

Needless to say, I don't use them anymore. When a seal does start leaking, it's usually a small piece of grit that is trapped and is an easy fix. I see a lot guys that assume that their seals are toast when it's simply a piece of dirt that need to be cleaned out.

Some other comments I've seen:

"If you run Seal Savers keep them clean else you would have been better off without them. I personally don't run them as I feel they present more of a problem running them. My suspension guy doesn't believe in them either."

"bad, theyare sand paper, seals are cheap and most all leaks can be fixed by cleaning with the film method. "

"I do a lot of MTB fork overhauls and most of the folks that run the neoprene protectors NEVER take them off and clean them, the silt just sits on the seals trashing them worse than if there was no protection. Personally I'd like to see the fork manufacturers come back with accordion style fork boots for MC's and MTB's "

"My wife had a set on her 04 450 EXC. One day we went on a ride with a group in a really muddy area. Her bike was the only one with the seal savers. Her bike was also the only one that developed leaky seals during the ride. When we took the forks apart, the seal savers had mud packed up under them up against the seals. It appears the seal savers held the mud up against the seals until some was forced into them causing the leak. On the bikes without the seal savers, the mud was able to fall away from the seals. We removed the seal savers (seal killers) and will most like never run them again. I know for sure my wife will never run them again on any of her bikes. "

  • Col Psoas

Posted September 14, 2010 - 07:21 PM

#8

I have never used them and probably never will. I too believe that they have more potential to cause problems with stuff getting trapped up against the seals than they have the potential to prevent.

... remember that even if you clean them every ride they could be holding sand etc where you don't want it rubbing for the Entire ride... assuming you clean them everytime and Nobody does

  • WR450FGreg

Posted September 15, 2010 - 10:43 AM

#9

.

Don't you have to take the Forks off to remove them? Your messn' with me, right?


Nope, mine are the style that are easily removable with a velcro seam down the back.
Not actually "Seal-saver" brand, but are the same, ie made from wetsuit material etc.
Got 'em on eBay for about $10 new.
I love 'em.

Extra stinction? I certainly can't notice any significant increase in that regard! I'm not chump on a dirtbike, I am a former MX/Enduro racer, I was never national level but I won many, many races in my time. I can't feel any real increase in stinction and with my current riding (casual/fast trail riding) who cares? LOL!

assuming you clean them everytime and Nobody does

Incorrect, I certainly do! They are so easy to slip off and throw in the wash, why not clean them every time?

I also always clean the fork tubes after each ride while the seal-savers are off.

I also follow Yamaha's cleaning advice for the dust seals, after every muddy ride and every second dry/dusty ride.
This includes the greasing aspect BTW.

Some love 'em, some hate 'em.
To each his own. I love 'em!

Greg

Visit the ThumperTalk Store for the lowest prices on motorcycle / ATV parts and accessories - Guaranteed
  • CanadianWR450

Posted September 15, 2010 - 04:38 PM

#10

Those would be "Shox Sox", and I got a set as well, after about my 5th seal leak (all fixed with film btw). I have not had a seal leak since I have started running them actually.
I also take them off and clean them after every ride (as mentioned above, they simply Velcro on and off).

As for hurting shock performance?
Maybe they do, maybe they don't, but if they do, it certainly doesn't impact my low skill, old and slow trail bashing....lol

  • OUTERLIMITS

Posted September 15, 2010 - 05:41 PM

#11

Extra stinction? I certainly can't notice any significant increase in that regard! I'm not chump on a dirtbike, I am a former MX/Enduro racer, I was never national level but I won many, many races in my time. I can't feel any real increase in stinction and with my current riding (casual/fast trail riding) who cares? LOL!
Greg


Agree, it's undetectable.

  • Navaho6

Posted September 16, 2010 - 05:37 PM

#12

Agree, it's undetectable.


The velcro type are not as tight and probably not as bad but the one-piece type are worthless. Bridging the upper and lower fork tubes with a tight-fitting neoprene wrap is going to hamper the forks motion. Not a huge amount but certainly noticeable if you're paying attention. But I can understand that a majority riders would not notice a difference in performance. What happens is you quickly become accustomed to the way the suspension is currently working and forget about how it use to work.

Edited by Navaho6, September 16, 2010 - 05:56 PM.


  • freeindeeds

Posted September 16, 2010 - 07:07 PM

#13

I use the velcro type, I think "dirt skins".
I ziptie real hard over the top half to prevent dust from entering
& ziptie the bottom lightly so to minimize stiction.
Then I clean them & the forks about every 75 miles.
Do others do this?

  • Butta

Posted September 16, 2010 - 07:38 PM

#14

The only time my forks (both of them) ever leaked was after the first ride with the seal savers....I pulled them off, cleaned with film, never put them back on and over 3.5 years the forks never leaked again. I'll NEVER use anything like those again, pure problems IMO.

  • WR450FGreg

Posted September 17, 2010 - 01:11 AM

#15

.

The only time my forks (both of them) ever leaked was after the first ride with the seal savers


mmmm, strange.
I can see why you blamed the seal savers! Both leaked ..... must be the seal savers! I reckon I'd think the same.

(To everyone....) Isn't it weird how people can have such differing experiences/opinions of something like this?
I mean, opinions seem to be split half and half .... half like them, half hate them!


Seems to me that the best idea is to try them yourself (they really aren't that expensive). Form your own opinion and go with it.

2 years on .... I'm totally happy with mine. I'll be sticking with them for the foreseeable future, that's for sure.

Greg

  • OUTERLIMITS

Posted September 17, 2010 - 02:58 PM

#16

I'm guessing there may be a difference between using them in mud and using them in dust. There is no mud where I ride so it is mostly dust and they seem to be doing a great job. Never do I find anything alarming underneath them. This I would imagine could be different with mud. I use the long ones from Tusk. You have to slide the forks out to change them. I just roll them up when washing the bike, clean underneath, and leave them rolled up until they are dry so there are no water spots on the inner fork tubes.

  • WR450FGreg

Posted September 17, 2010 - 03:32 PM

#17

.

I'm guessing there may be a difference between using them in mud and using them in dust.


Maybe for some, but I've used mine in both mud and dust and never had an issue.
I reckon it comes down to people not cleaning the seal-savers properly, as well as not following Yamaha's recommendations on dust seal cleaning.

Do 'em both and I reckon you'll have zero problems .... like me!

Greg :ride:

  • Butta

Posted September 22, 2010 - 05:58 PM

#18

.

Maybe for some, but I've used mine in both mud and dust and never had an issue.
I reckon it comes down to people not cleaning the seal-savers properly, as well as not following Yamaha's recommendations on dust seal cleaning.

Do 'em both and I reckon you'll have zero problems .... like me!

Greg :ride:


Or, don't use them ever, and never have a problem with fork seal leakage, like me. :banghead:




 
x

Join Our Community!

Even if you don't want to post, registered members get access to tools that make finding & following the good stuff easier.

If you enjoyed reading about "" here in the ThumperTalk archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join ThumperTalk today!

The views and opinions expressed on this page are strictly those of the author, and have not been reviewed or approved by ThumperTalk.