Fork Rebuild


Information and questions on GL1200 Goldwings (1984-1987)
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Detenator
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Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2012 11:32 pm
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Motorcycle: 1986 GL1200 Interstate
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Fork Rebuild

Postby Detenator » Fri Jun 12, 2015 10:07 am



Hello, I have and 86 gl1200i my left fork leg is leaking badly. Yesterday I started tearing into it. My first question is can these forks be dropped without taking off the fairing. How do you get the air system loose. Where is the step by step process to guide me thru this I cant seem to find any articles from anyone who has totally rebuilt their forks. Since I am going to replace the seals I figured that I should do bushings and replace seals and bushing in the antidive valves too. I am also thinking that I should replace O-rings or whatever is in the air system too. I found 1 article in the how to section and it was for gl1500 forks and they are nothing like the 1200 forks. The air assist is way different so what's the deal. When I drained the forks the oil was BLACK!!!!. The leaking fork leg had 3 times as much oil in it as the other leg. These two facts have me concerned that these forks have never been serviced and I want to do it right. Especially if I have to pull the fairings off to do this. I only want to do this once. So who out there has done a total fork service and not just seals? Any help info out there on how to accomplish this.



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CMReynolds1
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Re: Fork Rebuild

Postby CMReynolds1 » Fri Jun 12, 2015 10:35 am

Check out this previous question on fork rebuild. It might help.

viewtopic.php?f=12&t=19476
Ride Safe,
Taz


TF 116, RivRon 512, Can Tho, S. Vietnam, 8/66-/9/68, GM(G)2

Detenator
Posts: 21
Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2012 11:32 pm
Location: Bend, Oregon
Motorcycle: 1986 GL1200 Interstate
1998 Shadow ACE VT750 CDII
2006 CRF250X
1991 EZ90 Cub
Contact:

Re: Fork Rebuild

Postby Detenator » Fri Jun 12, 2015 12:14 pm

Thankx for trying to help but that article is of no use. First it does nothing about addressing the air system because that fork has air valves in the top of the forks and they are easy to drop out. Second that guy had money to burn so he went out and purchased over $400 in special tools. And all he did was seals and bushings. That's the easy part. Again I am asking if anybody knows get these forks off without pulling the upper fairing? Has anybody done a through fork service. That's all the systems in the fork not just seals? I find it hard that a bike that's been around for 30 yrs has no articles about a full servicing. Seals, bushings, springs, TRAC system, valves. I just want to know an easy way to get these forks off the bike without a full day of tear the fairings off. A fork rebuild should be an easy job. Not a multi day task.

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CMReynolds1
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Re: Fork Rebuild

Postby CMReynolds1 » Fri Jun 12, 2015 12:47 pm

Sorry, I should have reread the article before sending it. I haven't done forks for years and on the wings and it was an 82 Interstate and the fairing stayed on. I have an 1800 now and it is still new enough to not need it yet. Hopefully another person will log on help you out. Have a great day.
Ride Safe,
Taz


TF 116, RivRon 512, Can Tho, S. Vietnam, 8/66-/9/68, GM(G)2

Detenator
Posts: 21
Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2012 11:32 pm
Location: Bend, Oregon
Motorcycle: 1986 GL1200 Interstate
1998 Shadow ACE VT750 CDII
2006 CRF250X
1991 EZ90 Cub
Contact:

Re: Fork Rebuild

Postby Detenator » Fri Jun 12, 2015 2:00 pm

I finally gave in and the fairing is almost off.

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WingAdmin
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Re: Fork Rebuild

Postby WingAdmin » Fri Jun 12, 2015 2:16 pm

It can be done without pulling the fairing off.

You need to first loosen the top and bottom fork pinch bolts on each side. The top bridge (between the forks, held in place with the steering stem nut) is then removed. Next the air equalizer is pulled up and off - it is held in place & sealed with rubber O-rings that need to be greased before reinstallation:

Air Equalizer
Air Equalizer


Next the stop ring is removed, then with the pinch bolts still loosened, the fork can be dropped out of the bike:

Pinch Bolts
Pinch Bolts

Detenator
Posts: 21
Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2012 11:32 pm
Location: Bend, Oregon
Motorcycle: 1986 GL1200 Interstate
1998 Shadow ACE VT750 CDII
2006 CRF250X
1991 EZ90 Cub
Contact:

Re: Fork Rebuild

Postby Detenator » Sat Jun 13, 2015 1:01 pm

Thank you. I have all the fairings off and full access to the forks. I am finally able to see how it all fits together. Hopefully there wont be a next time. I also hope I can get all the pieces for this rebuild. I can see that the age is becoming an obstacle in parts availability. I love that old bike. So I am charging on. 2day I am picking up some bigger snap ring pliers and some mineral sprits. I will have it off and cleaned so I can access what the fork has or needs to be put back into buttery service again. 8-)

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WINGER3
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Motorcycle: current 2005 GL1800ABS previous GL1200A GL1500K GL1100A CB350 GL650I VFR1000 ST1100 GL1200A GL1500I + many other brands

Re: Fork Rebuild

Postby WINGER3 » Sat Jun 13, 2015 1:40 pm

Hi Detenator: welcome to the site, it's the best site for Goldwings of all models on the Net, if you don't find it here it's probaly not out there.

First thing to know about the forks is that the top caps are under a lot of pressure from the springs. If you have a vice it is the best to hold the fork tube and you must have a good socket and ratchet for the fork cap, a open or box end wrench is a last resort but much more dangerious from flying fork caps. You will see many home made devices on this site to remove or install the springs and caps. I have used this method on 1100's,1200's & 1500's and many other brands. With the socket and ratchet you push against the ratchet as you turn the cap slowly untill release of the cap, be very carful as the spring is capable of shredding the last couple of threads of the tube if you are not applying enough pressure to offset the spring pressure.

Once you have rebuilt the fork and are ready to install the spring (I would replace old with new Progressive's springs) install the caps to where they just interlock with the tube's threads and mark them so when you are installing them with the springs in you will be able to line up the cap so as a 1/4 turn will ingage the threads and maintain the down force on the spring until you have at least 4 full 360 degree turns on the caps.

I hope this will help. :mrgreen:
DON'T DESTROY IT-RESTORE IT

Detenator
Posts: 21
Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2012 11:32 pm
Location: Bend, Oregon
Motorcycle: 1986 GL1200 Interstate
1998 Shadow ACE VT750 CDII
2006 CRF250X
1991 EZ90 Cub
Contact:

Re: Fork Rebuild

Postby Detenator » Sun Jun 14, 2015 2:02 pm

Yes I agree that this is a pretty useful site. The info on dropping the motor and installing a new stator and pulse gens was very helpful. Fork rebuild that is another story. After struggling with finding the rt pair of snap ring pliers I yanked the lowers while it was on the bike. I then yanked the uppers form the triples. Before pulling the uppers I loosened the top caps 1/2 turn, then I pulled the uppers leaving the air system in place. I then took a deep socket and clamped it in my vice. The socket was long enough to sit on the ledge underneath the jaws and still sat slightly above the tops of the jaws, so it could not slip down any further. I took the upper legs and turned them upside down and put the top cap in the socket and with downward pressure applied I unscrewed the top caps. Upon removing the top caps I found that they had progressive springs in them already. Is this why it really did not feel like that much pressure on the top caps? Don't know. I now am going to service Honda's web sight to order parts because the other site I use (bike bandit) does not list some of the parts I need. So now she sits there in pieces waiting for parts. Poor ol girl.

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WINGER3
Posts: 202
Joined: Fri Oct 05, 2012 11:41 pm
Location: Orange, California
Motorcycle: current 2005 GL1800ABS previous GL1200A GL1500K GL1100A CB350 GL650I VFR1000 ST1100 GL1200A GL1500I + many other brands

Re: Fork Rebuild

Postby WINGER3 » Sun Jun 14, 2015 2:32 pm

BikeBandit is not the only one with OEM parts, I have bought many parts from these venders also and never a problem.
CheapCycleparts
Cyclemax
J&P cycles
WingStuff and last but not least Ebay.
Good Luck. :mrgreen:
DON'T DESTROY IT-RESTORE IT

Detenator
Posts: 21
Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2012 11:32 pm
Location: Bend, Oregon
Motorcycle: 1986 GL1200 Interstate
1998 Shadow ACE VT750 CDII
2006 CRF250X
1991 EZ90 Cub
Contact:

Re: Fork Rebuild

Postby Detenator » Sun Jun 14, 2015 11:13 pm

Thankx. I know I have accounts at most of them. I went thru service Honda. They seem to have the biggest selection of oem parts. I ordered 38 different parts, 34 of which are for the forks alone. I am also doing the front wheel bearings and dust seals since it is off getting a new tire. I chose not to do the head bearings because they feel tight and smooth and they are pretty well protected from the elements and they really don't spin that much. I hope these will be some of the smoothest 30yr old forks out there when I am done with them.

Detenator
Posts: 21
Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2012 11:32 pm
Location: Bend, Oregon
Motorcycle: 1986 GL1200 Interstate
1998 Shadow ACE VT750 CDII
2006 CRF250X
1991 EZ90 Cub
Contact:

Re: Fork Rebuild

Postby Detenator » Wed Jul 08, 2015 5:11 pm

I am rebuilding my forks and want to know how long my progressive springs should be.

Detenator
Posts: 21
Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2012 11:32 pm
Location: Bend, Oregon
Motorcycle: 1986 GL1200 Interstate
1998 Shadow ACE VT750 CDII
2006 CRF250X
1991 EZ90 Cub
Contact:

Re: Fork Rebuild

Postby Detenator » Wed Jul 08, 2015 5:13 pm

The springs I currently have are just under 20 inches stock ones should be over 21

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WINGER3
Posts: 202
Joined: Fri Oct 05, 2012 11:41 pm
Location: Orange, California
Motorcycle: current 2005 GL1800ABS previous GL1200A GL1500K GL1100A CB350 GL650I VFR1000 ST1100 GL1200A GL1500I + many other brands

Re: Fork Rebuild

Postby WINGER3 » Wed Jul 08, 2015 8:41 pm

THE PROGRESSIVES ARE SHORTER THEN STOCK BUT ARE PROGRESSIVE WOUND SO THEY ABSORB SMALL BUMPS AND HARD ONE'S MUCH BETTER AND DON'T JAR YOUR TEETH OUT OR BOTTOM OUT LIKE THE STOCK ONE'S. MY BIKE IS MUCH SMOOTHER AND HANDLES MUCH BETTER WITH THEM. :mrgreen:


DON'T DESTROY IT-RESTORE IT


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