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Type Gendy

fork reinstallation

14 posts in this topic

Hey guys,

I just took my forks off my 426 to have the seals and bushings serviced. I am looking for a guide to reinstalling them with the correct procedure and specs to throw these back in. The mechanic told me to tighten the axle first with the axle pinch bolts loose first...etc. Just wanna make sure i'm doing it all in the right order and torque everything down correctly.

Anybody know of the procedure? I tried searching for it but didnt find anything. Sorry if i missed it

TIA, Gendy

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Yea i was looking at that for reference but was getting a little lost with some terminology...

Is there any certain way the fork should be positioned (twisted) on the bike? Or just have it so the adjustment letters S AND H on the top are readable sittin on the bike?

Anybody know what size the allen key hole is on the axle? Just went and bought a set up to 17mm but it wasnt big enough :thumbsup:

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I believe it's 19mm. Here's what I do:

Slide the forks in and orient the caps so that the air bleed screws are to the front. Sometimes, your bars may make them hard to get at, so in that case, move them to a different position. Tighten the top clamp pinch bolts to 17 ft/lb. just snug the bottom.

Insert the axle and run the nut down to about 10-20 foot pounds, then tighten the pinch bolts on the left axle lug (nut side, brake side) to 17 ft/lb, and tighten the axle nut. Leave the right side loose. Set the bike on the ground, and compress the suspension as much as you can 3-4 times, then put it back on the stand and tighten the right side axle pinch bolts to 17 ft/lb.

Now, with the bike on the ground, verify that the front wheel and the handlebars agree on which way straight forward is, correct as necessary by twisting the wheel against something, and tighten the bottom triple clamp pinch bolts to 14 ft/lb.

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Gray's procedure for installation is perfect, but the nut is a 22mm. :thumbsup:

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Gray's procedure for installation is perfect, but the nut is a 22mm. :thumbsup:
The nut is, sure, but he was asking about the hex socket in the right end of the axle, I believe.

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Now, with the bike on the ground, verify that the front wheel and the handlebars agree on which way straight forward is, correct as necessary by twisting the wheel against something, and tighten the bottom triple clamp pinch bolts to 14 ft/lb.

I usually just tighten all the triple clamp bolts first, then do the wheel procedure and the wheel sorts itself out 'cause the inner tubes can spin when you tighten the axle. As long as the axle is a snug fit, the wheel should end up dead straight. The handlebar will usually only face a different direction after a hard crash. Have you ever had to straighten the wheel to match the handlebars when refitting the forks and wheel, Gray? I'm not trying to start a war here, but I am curious 'cause as far as I know mine ends up dead straight every time?:thumbsup:

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went to 3 different stores today to find a 19mm hex and no luck, not even sears or harbor freight :thumbsup: I guess i can tighten up the pinch bolts first then torque the axle, but the tech told me that could cause damage to the bushings

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went to 3 different stores today to find a 19mm hex and no luck, not even sears or harbor freight :thumbsup: I guess i can tighten up the pinch bolts first then torque the axle, but the tech told me that could cause damage to the bushings

You can probably get the axle tight enough without tightening the pinch bolts or having a hex head in the other end. Maybe I'm the only one, but I don't use a hex head in the other end.

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Have you ever had to straighten the wheel to match the handlebars when refitting the forks and wheel, Gray?
Only rarely, and not much, unless something was actually bent. But it's a habit from back in the day, when forks were smaller, and could be more easily assembled out of alignment.
went to 3 different stores today to find a 19mm hex and no luck, not even sears or harbor freight :thumbsup: I guess i can tighten up the pinch bolts first then torque the axle, but the tech told me that could cause damage to the bushings
He's wrong, unless you tighten both axle lugs without centering the fork by bouncing the front end in as I said, and then ride it that way.

If you tighten the axle nut without tightening the left axle lug at all, you will probably spread the axle lug open slightly, and/or interfere with its ability to clamp correctly. If you tighten the lug first, the axle won't be drawn through the lug with the specified force, and the wheel bearing spacer stack won't clamp correctly.

The best bet is to snug up the nut, snug up the lug, pull the nut up a little more, torque the lug, and then the axle. All this time, the right lug is still loose, so you haven't bound up the fork tubes, and there is no need to hold the axle by the right end.

If you're OK with ugly tools, and you have access to a welding torch, you can bend a long 1/2" bolt over at 90 degrees (19mm is 3/4", which is the head size of a half inch bolt). Most hardware stores also sell "tower nuts", or "pillar nuts" for coupling threaded rods together that can be inserted in the axle and turned with a wrench. Again, 1/2" USS threads will have the right size hex.

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following this procedure grayracer, how can you be sure that the axle has "sucked" all the way thru the fork braces?

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following this procedure grayracer, how can you be sure that the axle has "sucked" all the way thru the fork braces?
Insert the axle and run the nut down to about 10-20 foot pounds,
At this point, we have enough torque on the axle nut to guarantee that it has been drawn all the way through the wheel bearings and the left axle lug, which correctly seats the entire bearing and spacer stack, but not so much that it will tend to spread open the lug, or interfere with clamping the lug to the axle. We proceed...
then tighten the pinch bolts on the left axle lug (nut side, brake side) to 17 ft/lb, and tighten the axle nut. Leave the right side loose.
The problem, you see, is that the two clamping pressures involved here conflict with each other. If the axle is too tight, the lug can't be properly tightened down on the axle. If the lug is too tight before the axle nut is torqued, the axle won't be "sucked through". The idea here is to draw the axle in completely, clamp the lug, and then tighten the nut. I actually torque the lug about half way, then torque the axle, then finish the lug. Remember, at this point, the right side is still loose.
Set the bike on the ground, and compress the suspension as much as you can 3-4 times, then put it back on the stand and tighten the right side axle pinch bolts to 17 ft/lb.
The point in this is to force the lower forks to align with the uppers, during which the right lug will slide along the axle to the point where it should be to be correctly aligned.

The principal is simple. Forks have an upper and lower bearing, one located at the bottom of the upper/outer tube, and the other located at the top of the lower/inner tube. With the forks fully extended, these bearings are only a few inches apart, and they can't prevent something like the drag of inserting the axle from deflecting the lower end of the lower tube of center. Compressing the forks pushes these two bearings much father apart, so that they are much more able to align both tubes on the same center over the entire length, and this in turn forces the right side lug to scoot along the axle until properly centered up.

Your tech friend may be correctly suggesting that rotating the axle will allow the lugs to center up, but there may not be enough centering influence to completely align the forks while they're extended. Also, having done that with the axle loose, the right side could still be pulled off center as the axle is tightened. And, the forks could still be out of alignment unless the front end is bounced in some.

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go to a chain saw shop and buy a spanner wrench.the spanner wrench is for the spark plug & chain adjustment on a chain saw. the one for Husqvarna is 19 mm on the one end.They don,t cost much either.that is what i use.

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