Front fork spring upgrade


Information and questions on GL1500 Goldwings (1988-2000)
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Great_adVENTURE
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Motorcycle: 1995 Honda GL1500 SE
2020 Can-Am Ryker 600
2016 Harley Davidson SPORTSTER 72

Front fork spring upgrade

Post by Great_adVENTURE »



Looking at progressive springs from a few of the popular goldwing accessory supply houses. Curious if I should get the heavy duty springs or the standard springs. Of course I'm going to rebuild all the appropriate guides and seals while I'm at it.


If you never did you should. These things are fun. And fun is good. ~Dr.Seuss

gford
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Re: Front fork spring upgrade

Post by gford »

I installed 11-1152 springs and used 15 w fork oil like progressive recommended, however I found the front end too hard and changed the fork oil to 10 w which gives a nice ride.

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CrystalPistol
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Re: Front fork spring upgrade

Post by CrystalPistol »

Great_adVENTURE wrote:
Thu Aug 06, 2020 3:55 pm
Looking at progressive springs from a few of the popular goldwing accessory supply houses. Curious if I should get the heavy duty springs or the standard springs. Of course I'm going to rebuild all the appropriate guides and seals while I'm at it.
If a "BIKE", below is great advice IMHO.
gford wrote:
Thu Aug 06, 2020 5:09 pm
I installed 11-1152 springs and used 15 w fork oil like progressive recommended, however I found the front end too hard and changed the fork oil to 10 w which gives a nice ride.
If a "TRIKE" with a rake kit, there are better options.
Make Courtesy your "Code of the Road" …

… & Have a Safe Trip!
:)

Great_adVENTURE
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Re: Front fork spring upgrade

Post by Great_adVENTURE »

I'm seeing there is a heavy duty version and a standard version. On the heavier one it's using a single spring rate and on the standard it uses dual spring rates.
If you never did you should. These things are fun. And fun is good. ~Dr.Seuss

Great_adVENTURE
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Re: Front fork spring upgrade

Post by Great_adVENTURE »

Fork rebuild, timing belts, coolant flush, oh my!


Digging in to the wing. Noticed I’m missing the left brake hose holder that attaches to the fork. Anyone got one they want to part with? Looked up on the oem parts sites and seems to be out of stock forever.
If you never did you should. These things are fun. And fun is good. ~Dr.Seuss

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Wing--Man
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Re: Front fork spring upgrade

Post by Wing--Man »

HOBBY LOBBY has a bin of short metal rods & tubes, I bought an 1/8 inch rod.
Cut a 4 inch long piece and bent it around the bolt with equal tail ends.
Snugged the bold down then bent those tails around the hose.
Be sure to leave space for your wrench to complete the bolts torque.
I ground round the tail ends so not to poke myself.
.
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Re: Front fork spring upgrade

Post by minimac »

^ That's great. You should cross post that into the D.I.Y. section!

Great_adVENTURE
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Re: Front fork spring upgrade

Post by Great_adVENTURE »

Wing--Man wrote:
Sun Aug 09, 2020 10:22 pm
HOBBY LOBBY has a bin of short metal rods & tubes, I bought an 1/8 inch rod.
Cut a 4 inch long piece and bent it around the bolt with equal tail ends.
Snugged the bold down then bent those tails around the hose.
Be sure to leave space for your wrench to complete the bolts torque.
I ground round the tail ends so not to poke myself.
.
Great idea!
If you never did you should. These things are fun. And fun is good. ~Dr.Seuss

Arcweld80
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Re: Front fork spring upgrade

Post by Arcweld80 »

I have rebuilt my front fork with new bushings and seals and 325 cc of 10 w oil in each damper. Still use my 32 year old springs. And its like a new bike!! Cant understand why anyone wants stiffer springs?? I think a good cleaning of the forks and new bushing/seals/oil make up for that "stiffer" feeling.

Great_adVENTURE
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Re: Front fork spring upgrade

Post by Great_adVENTURE »

Arcweld80 wrote:
Tue Aug 11, 2020 10:43 am
I have rebuilt my front fork with new bushings and seals and 325 cc of 10 w oil in each damper. Still use my 32 year old springs. And its like a new bike!! Cant understand why anyone wants stiffer springs?? I think a good cleaning of the forks and new bushing/seals/oil make up for that "stiffer" feeling.
Figure I would give that a shot first and move to new springs if it doesn't feel right. Before I took every thing apart I only had about an inch and a half of travel.
If you never did you should. These things are fun. And fun is good. ~Dr.Seuss

Great_adVENTURE
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Re: Front fork spring upgrade

Post by Great_adVENTURE »

So after careful disassembly I didn't experience the great pressure of the spring pushing back on the for tube cap like I read in other posts. Compared parts that I have to the microfiche and everything is there and in the correct place. Guess I'll have to wait and see what happens when everything goes back together before I pull the trigger on the new springs.
If you never did you should. These things are fun. And fun is good. ~Dr.Seuss

Great_adVENTURE
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Re: Front fork spring upgrade

Post by Great_adVENTURE »

Well everything is buttoned up and blackwing brace installed. Running 10w fork oil and 5 psi in the forks with stock springs. Just doesn't feel right to me. Having many heavy weight touring bikes before and riding others I feel like the front end sit low and I feel like I'm leaning forward. Besides that the front end is mush. Thinking I'm going to just spring (no pun intended) for the progressive springs.
If you never did you should. These things are fun. And fun is good. ~Dr.Seuss

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Swagonmaster
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Re: Front fork spring upgrade

Post by Swagonmaster »

Great_adVENTURE wrote:
Wed Aug 26, 2020 6:17 pm
So after careful disassembly I didn't experience the great pressure of the spring pushing back on the for tube cap like I read in other posts. Compared parts that I have to the microfiche and everything is there and in the correct place. Guess I'll have to wait and see what happens when everything goes back together before I pull the trigger on the new springs.
I didn't have any real problem putting mine back together with the stock springs as well, however if you do the heavier progressive springs be prepared for a fight unless you have a tool to compress that spring the last little bit. Home made tools will work but believe me they are appreciated doing that job. For my money I like the ride with the progressives, it's not stiff at all.
Try to learn from the mistakes of others..... you won't live long enough to make them all yourself!

XJSRider
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Re: Front fork spring upgrade

Post by XJSRider »

I stuck a ratchet through a piece of square stock so my friend could push down on the square stock while I used the ratchet to tighten the fork caps... it was a piece of cake to get the progressives in without the tool (as long as you have a helper!). I too found that it was no big deal to fight the springs to get the caps off.

I rebuilt my forks and put progressives in with 10 weight... I was surprised how thin the 10 weight seemed compared to 15 I put in the last bike... I have the blackwing too. I was hoping to stiffen up the front end just like you. Hopefully I can get the bike started tomorrow I'll let you know what I think (coming from sportbike background)

Great_adVENTURE
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Re: Front fork spring upgrade

Post by Great_adVENTURE »

Thanks swagonmaster and xjsrider. 😎👍
If you never did you should. These things are fun. And fun is good. ~Dr.Seuss

XJSRider
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Re: Front fork spring upgrade

Post by XJSRider »

I was able to go for a short 12 mile ride last night after sorting out my alternator. My front setup is completely rebuilt forks, blackwing fork brace, standard progressive springs and 10 wt fork oil.

I was afraid the 10 wt seemed very light but man what a difference. I don't know if my original springs were just shot or if they are just too light from the factory, or if the fork brace is making the difference, but it handles soooo much better. I have brand new tires and brand new brakes so I need to let those break in and wasn't pushing it... even still ended up dragging a highway peg. Bike felt much much better if your front end is still sloppy after rebuild with stock springs try the progressives they only around 100 bucks but made a huge difference for me with everything else. I think the 10 wt is plenty but if you wanted it even stiffer draining and refilling the oil with the forks on the bike is easy. Good luck with your ride!

Great_adVENTURE
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Re: Front fork spring upgrade

Post by Great_adVENTURE »

Fork rebuild, timing belts, coolant flush, new front tire, trailer hitch, new to me saddlebags, and various fasteners later. She is sitting noticeably higher than when I got her. Date mark on the tires makes them 15 years old and you would think they were just put on by the way they look. Noticed an enormous amount of white fluff from what only could have been a old leaking battery that stripped the paint off the frame and rear master cylinder. Previous owner just thru in a new battery before purchase so never even looked till today. Next battle will be to clean it all up, replace the rear master cylinder, and replace the rear tire. Couldn't have gotten this far this fast without the forum, thank you!
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If you never did you should. These things are fun. And fun is good. ~Dr.Seuss

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CrystalPistol
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Re: Front fork spring upgrade

Post by CrystalPistol »

Great_adVENTURE wrote:
Sat Sep 12, 2020 5:16 pm
Fork rebuild, timing belts, coolant flush, new front tire, trailer hitch, new to me saddlebags, and various fasteners later. She is sitting noticeably higher than when I got her. Date mark on the tires makes them 15 years old and you would think they were just put on by the way they look. Noticed an enormous amount of white fluff from what only could have been a old leaking battery that stripped the paint off the frame and rear master cylinder. Previous owner just thru in a new battery before purchase so never even looked till today. Next battle will be to clean it all up, replace the rear master cylinder, and replace the rear tire. Couldn't have gotten this far this fast without the forum, thank you!
Image
I've used Battery Acid Detector (from Advance Auto Parts) in a spray can on such places, it'll clean the parts of acid remains, then I use a bit of brake clean, dry, then paint. At the very least, I'd remove the white stuff & maybe spray the metal with an oil. I found out how good it is changing batteries out for customers, I used to use baking soda or coke, no more though.

I put Progressive Suspension springs in my '85 GL1200 Bike, 15wt fork oil, HUGE improvement in "turn in" as I was on brakes as the front stayed up better, not a huge change in rake or trail in use. .

My 1500 was a trike, had a 6 degree kit added, the 11-1152s were too stiff in that setting, so I ended up with Kawasaki intended front Progressive springs. On a stock front end with steeper fork tubes the 11-1152 would have been perfect I think.

Nice looking bike there!
Make Courtesy your "Code of the Road" …

… & Have a Safe Trip!
:)

Great_adVENTURE
Posts: 26
Joined: Thu Jun 18, 2020 7:37 am
Location: Highlands NJ
Motorcycle: 1995 Honda GL1500 SE
2020 Can-Am Ryker 600
2016 Harley Davidson SPORTSTER 72

Re: Front fork spring upgrade

Post by Great_adVENTURE »

CrystalPistol wrote:
Sat Sep 12, 2020 5:54 pm
Great_adVENTURE wrote:
Sat Sep 12, 2020 5:16 pm
Fork rebuild, timing belts, coolant flush, new front tire, trailer hitch, new to me saddlebags, and various fasteners later. She is sitting noticeably higher than when I got her. Date mark on the tires makes them 15 years old and you would think they were just put on by the way they look. Noticed an enormous amount of white fluff from what only could have been a old leaking battery that stripped the paint off the frame and rear master cylinder. Previous owner just thru in a new battery before purchase so never even looked till today. Next battle will be to clean it all up, replace the rear master cylinder, and replace the rear tire. Couldn't have gotten this far this fast without the forum, thank you!
Image
I've used Battery Acid Detector (from Advance Auto Parts) in a spray can on such places, it'll clean the parts of acid remains, then I use a bit of brake clean, dry, then paint. At the very least, I'd remove the white stuff & maybe spray the metal with an oil. I found out how good it is changing batteries out for customers, I used to use baking soda or coke, no more though.

I put Progressive Suspension springs in my '85 GL1200 Bike, 15wt fork oil, HUGE improvement in "turn in" as I was on brakes as the front stayed up better, not a huge change in rake or trail in use. .

My 1500 was a trike, had a 6 degree kit added, the 11-1152s were too stiff in that setting, so I ended up with Kawasaki intended front Progressive springs. On a stock front end with steeper fork tubes the 11-1152 would have been perfect I think.

Nice looking bike there!
Never heard of that, I'm going to look into that today. Decided springs can wait till it's on the road and racking up the miles. 😎👍
If you never did you should. These things are fun. And fun is good. ~Dr.Seuss

Great_adVENTURE
Posts: 26
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Motorcycle: 1995 Honda GL1500 SE
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Re: Front fork spring upgrade

Post by Great_adVENTURE »

Crystalpistol, that battery acid detector/cleaner that you recommended works great. Sprayed on liberally, waited for it to work, rinsed of thoroughly, and repeated after everything dried. Used a small toothbrush to get all the nooks and crannies. Will wipe it down good with prep cleaner and a nice coat of gloss black should protect all the metal surfaces. Thanks!
If you never did you should. These things are fun. And fun is good. ~Dr.Seuss

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CrystalPistol
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Re: Front fork spring upgrade

Post by CrystalPistol »

Great_adVENTURE wrote:
Sun Sep 13, 2020 12:13 pm
Crystalpistol, that battery acid detector/cleaner that you recommended works great. Sprayed on liberally, waited for it to work, rinsed of thoroughly, and repeated after everything dried. Used a small toothbrush to get all the nooks and crannies. Will wipe it down good with prep cleaner and a nice coat of gloss black should protect all the metal surfaces. Thanks!
YEAH!

I forgot to include the word "cleaner", but yeah, you got it right. Great to have on hand. I use it on the mower, car, pick up too as need arises. I even used it where some D cells leaked in a toy.

I had never used it before 2012, I had always used other methods. I retired from the state police in 2010, then took a part time job at Advance Auto Parts as a delivery driver as I had gotten to know them all well and needed something to keep me out in public and a few $$ for toys, eating out, etc … I knew all the local mechanics & wrecker operator, so I was amongst friends. One day my manager asked me if I could do a battery install, I said sure and grabbed a group 65 and headed out to put it into a car. I remember because it was a '98 Mercury like our '01, I had known the owner since transferring here in 1981 too. His battery terminals were grossly covered in acid remains, it was a mess. I saw that can of battery detector cleaner / protectant spray on the "battery cart" as we called it, figured it was worth a try. WOW ,.. I sprayed on then wiped excess off with Scott toweling, clean that fast. Swapped batteries after scrubbing post a shot of the red protectant spray, done.

No more water, soda, rinsing either, etc … just spray & wipe with Scott Towel, ready to go.

I like the red spray on protectant too, but I use black paint on the negative post of some so I don't confuse posts. Axle grease slathered on after cleaning works too, after cables are securely tightened.

I took your photo and brightened it up a hair, those saddle bags look SUPER IMHO!.


Make Courtesy your "Code of the Road" …

… & Have a Safe Trip!
:)

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