Front fork rebuild


Information and questions on GL1800 Goldwings (2001-2017)
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tomneill
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Joined: Wed May 09, 2018 8:42 am
Location: seattle, WA
Motorcycle: 2008 GL1800HPNA

Front fork rebuild

Post by tomneill »



Good afternoon all! I have a '08 GL1800 with 38,500 miles that I have owned for about a year (bought used). The front end does not absorb much shock at all, and a motorcycle mechanic friend suggested that it may be time to rebuild the shocks I have read a bit about the pluses and minuses of using Progressive Monotubes in the rebuild of the front forks, or going with just new springs. My question for those of you who have been down this path are as follows: 1) rebuild with OEM parts; 2) rebuild with Progressive or Traxxion springs; or 3) rebuild with the Monotube option. Any thoughts/opinions/experiences would be greatly appreciated!


doxbike
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Re: Front fork rebuild

Post by doxbike »

you would have better luck moving this post to the appropriate forum (pre '18) All the bikes on here have a totally different front end than an '08. Good luck
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MikeB
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Re: Front fork rebuild

Post by MikeB »

I would rebuild the forks with OEM parts except for the springs. I'd use Progressive springs or some other after market manufacturer. I would not use the Mono-Tubes. I've heard that they fail quickly.
MikeB
1998 - GL1500 w/184,500 miles ~ 2017 - GL1800 w/13000 miles
USAF Avionics Communications Tech - 1968 - 1986 / Flight Engineer C-130E - C-141B - 1986 - 1992. Retired
Industrial Maintenance Tech - 1992 - 2014
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tfdeputydawg
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Re: Front fork rebuild

Post by tfdeputydawg »

Rebuild using OEM springs
Make sure you check the ADV to ensure it's working. It's there for a reason.
Also, at nearly 40.000 miles, the rear shock could use attention also. Make sure the pump if full doing that service.
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am3098
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Re: Front fork rebuild

Post by am3098 »

I just upgraded my 08 to Progressive Mono Tubes and I'm happy with them; it's like having a gas charged automotive style suspension. I was going to go with Progressive springs being that I loved them in my 1500, but one thing that factored into my decision to go mono tube is no more fork oil changes or leaky fork seals. I saw in a previous post that someone said mono tubes fail; I haven't heard anything about that; Progressive has a lifetime warranty on them. I would stay away from OEM springs, you're going to pay big bucks from Honda for the same ones that are shot at 38K miles. The least expensive would be progressive springs around $125 at Cyclemax, mono tubes go for around $400. I didn't consider Traxxion simply because they were so much more expensive vs. Progressive (about double), and I have thousands of trouble free miles on Progressives in past bikes.
A.J. Musial
USAF Retired
Bazetta Twp., OH
94 1500SE
02 Bushtec

"A Veteran - is someone who, at one point in their life, wrote a blank check made payable to the U.S.A., in the amount of up to and including their life"
tomneill
Posts: 7
Joined: Wed May 09, 2018 8:42 am
Location: seattle, WA
Motorcycle: 2008 GL1800HPNA

Re: Front fork rebuild

Post by tomneill »

Thanks all for the input regarding rebuilding the front end on my bike. In looking at some of the other blogs out there it seems like there have been relatively few failures with the Monotube option, but also that the rebuild with Progressive springs is also a good option, and maybe a bit cheaper. Now I just need to figure out which direction to go.
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wingpilot08
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Motorcycle: 2008 GL1800-HPNA - 68,000+ miles
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bikes owned:
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1982 Yamaha 650 Maximum 30,000 miles
1987 Yamaha XVZ-1300 Venture 109,000 miles
1982 CB750-F Super Sport 60,000+ miles
1996 Honda GL1500-SE 210,000 miles

Re: Front fork rebuild

Post by wingpilot08 »

am3098 wrote: Mon May 06, 2019 1:38 pm but one thing that factored into my decision to go mono tube is no more fork oil changes or leaky fork seals. I saw in a previous post that someone said mono tubes fail; I haven't heard anything about that; Progressive has a lifetime warranty on them.
So are you saying that no fork oil is required in the rebuild??



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Oil added at time 7:45 on clock.....
08' GL1800-HPNA - Red 68,000+ miles
1995 Bunkhouse Camper
Darkside #1720
1975 CB550-4 mileage unknown
1982 Yamaha 650 Maxim 30,000 miles
1987 Yamaha XVZ-1300 Venture 109,000 miles
1982 CB750-FSS 60,000+ miles
1996 Honda GL1500-SE 210,000 miles
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Big Blue UK
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Re: Front fork rebuild

Post by Big Blue UK »

tom, when you say "The front end does not absorb much shock at all," what do you mean. Are you lightweight and the forks are too stiff???. You do not want to be buying Progressive springs, unscrew the caps, and pull out Progressive springs, or have too much oil, or a heavy grade.
My advice would be to pop the forks off, and have a butchers. You may be wasting your money buying springs beforehand.

You have a symptom, and a cure, but no diagnosis.
If at first you don't succeed, hide the evidence.
tomneill
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Motorcycle: 2008 GL1800HPNA

Re: Front fork rebuild

Post by tomneill »

Big Blue - good question. I weigh 225, am 5'10", and whether I ride single or two up, just about any bump in the road is a bit of a jolt. There also does not seem to be much travel on the forks, and given that I bought it used and its mileage, I just assumed it might be time to do a rebuild based on conversations I have seen online. Also, I had a motorcycle mechanic friend of mine take a quick look, and he concurred that it might be a good idea to the rebuild. Hence my inquiry.
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MikeB
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Re: Front fork rebuild

Post by MikeB »

If your motorcycle mechanic friend is not a GL1800 mechanic, he may be mis-diagnosing the issue.

If I were you, before I did any major disassembly I would check the anti-dive assembly to make sure the plunger is not depressed and causing the problem.
The anti-dive assembly is only held in place by two screws. No fluid will leak when it is removed. It is located on the left fork tube.




Remove the valve. The pin should be protruding about 3/16". If not, that is what is causing the stiff forks.
If it is protruding like it should, then perhaps it is time to take the forks off and replace the fluid.

By the way, there are ways to circumvent the anti-dive system and lots of GL1800 owners have done it.
Do a search on the internet for GL1800 Anti Dive Problems. There is a shim made especially for bypassing it. In fact, Wing Stuff sells it complete with the longer screws needed to install it.
Or, you can drill a hole in a nickle and put it in the plunger well thus preventing the plunger pin from getting depressed.
MikeB
1998 - GL1500 w/184,500 miles ~ 2017 - GL1800 w/13000 miles
USAF Avionics Communications Tech - 1968 - 1986 / Flight Engineer C-130E - C-141B - 1986 - 1992. Retired
Industrial Maintenance Tech - 1992 - 2014
Retired in Tacoma, WA
tomneill
Posts: 7
Joined: Wed May 09, 2018 8:42 am
Location: seattle, WA
Motorcycle: 2008 GL1800HPNA

Re: Front fork rebuild

Post by tomneill »

MikeB - thanks so much for the input on the ADV - I had not thought to check that before doing the fork work. I will pull that and see what's up before venturing to far down the rebuild path. Thanks again!
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am3098
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Re: Front fork rebuild

Post by am3098 »

Wingpilot08 wrote:
So are you saying that no fork oil is required in the rebuild??
I should clarify that with the mono tubes, the fork oil is only used for lubrication, not dampening like with springs. Progressive says it should still be changed every 30K miles or so.


A.J. Musial
USAF Retired
Bazetta Twp., OH
94 1500SE
02 Bushtec

"A Veteran - is someone who, at one point in their life, wrote a blank check made payable to the U.S.A., in the amount of up to and including their life"
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