Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 50 total)
  • Fork servicing… who does it themselves?
  • rockandrollmark
    Full Member

    … and was it intimidating the first time you did it?

    I’ve got a set of Rockshox that need a service and I’d like to do a travel reduce on them at the same time. I’ve watched about 600 videos and read countless articles that all make it look very straightforward, but somehow I’m still put off. I think it’s the fact that there’s fluid involved, as I’m similarly hesitant about bleeding brakes. Ridiculous though, as I do everything else on my bike at home and never have any issues.

    Anyone else feel this way about forks, despite maybe having built god-knows how many bikes in the past?

    duncancallum
    Full Member

    Be organized be clean

    Be easy

    tjagain
    Full Member

    Very straightforward. I have stripped many sets. Rockshox have really good tech guides on the net.

    Imo(and others will disagree) don’t touch any seals unless they are leaking.

    oreetmon
    Free Member

    Used to regularly service/full strip down 2010 boxxers, no probs.

    Not serviced forks in a while as they are usually sold waaay past the recommended service date (is that bad ? 👀)

    BUT, Price of forks nowadays is silly and I have reached my ‘I’m not paying that for them’ post midlife crisis age.

    Recommend me a cheap 2018 pike full service kit 😐

    stcolin
    Free Member

    Tried it once with a set of Fox Vanillas. Thought it went well, took my time, had all the right tools. First ride out, landed a drop and the damper rod popped out from the top of the right leg firing oil everywhere. I don’t even remember taking out the part that shot out!

    That was enough to put me off and no just send them off.

    TheGhost
    Full Member

    I like servicing forks myself. Bikes are just like lego. Brilliant.

    martinhutch
    Full Member

    Take your time, have at least some of the right tools. Don’t hit anything with a hammer unless you know you’re meant to.

    pip001
    Free Member

    i service my fox 34 and rockshox all the time.easy enough but just be careful with the bolts and valve as you tap them through.buy quality lubes as well.

    shortbread_fanylion
    Free Member

    Always avoided this for similar reasons to the OP but needed to shorten the travel on some old revelations for my son’s bike – it was pretty straightforward. There’s some good guides about, I think I followed a bikeradar one and SRAMs website is excellent for manuals and vids.

    Mugboo
    Full Member

    I think a decent pair of circlip pliers are worth buying to take off the circlip off to change the airspring on Rockshox. I do regular oil changes but have never tried doing the damper on my Pikes.

    I also think its probably still worth getting them done professionally sometimes.

    dirkpitt74
    Full Member

    I did my Marzocchi’s not to long back – first time I’d done it.
    I was worried about smashing a pair of expensive forks with a big rubber mallet…..
    Just be clean, careful and organised.

    stevemuzzy
    Free Member

    I do mine and my mates rockshox (helps i bought 1l of the fluid you need, many 15mls lol. Rockshox are really straight forward, only specialist tool you need is a non chamfered socket and circlip pliers.

    However i pay to get my fox 36s as the tools and lube to do it properly are nearly the price of a service at tf.

    mrwhyte
    Free Member

    I am useless when it comes to stuff like this usually, but got a kit off TF Tuned and the right tools then followed a YouTube video step by step. Managed my forks and shock. Like others have said, stay tidy, organised and clean.

    simono5
    Free Member

    Been doing lower leg service of some Rockshox Yari for a while.

    Recently upgrade to Debonair air spring. Really easy to do.

    Also serviced the Motion Control damper. Really straight forward.

    Follow the tech guides and take your time.

    DrP
    Full Member

    36ers are pretty easy…. mine uses the same weight oil in both lowers.. and the butter is great stuff.

    Even just a simple oil change and piston grease makes them lovely!

    DrP

    simon_g
    Full Member

    Had to travel adjust Mattocs – worried about it but was really quite easy. Had a few other forks apart since.

    I use a workstand clamping the steerer, then have a big plastic tray to collect the old oil. Make sure you’ve got the right tools, syringes for measuring out oil, etc.

    Don’t always believe the Rock Shox serial number tool for the service kit you need either, I had a boost Reba and it was recommending the non-boost service kit.

    endomick
    Free Member

    The hardest part of servicing your own forks is paying that much for 1oz of Sram butter.😀

    gkeeffe
    Full Member

    A good pair of circlip pliers is a must if you’re changing travel and swapping the air spring. The toughest thing is removing it on Rockshox. There isn’t much depth in the clip. The new springs make it easier though. Everything else is easy.

    rockandrollmark
    Full Member

    Thanks for the replies. Seems like it’s perhaps as straightforward as the online guides sergeant then.

    Yeah, actually forking (no pun) out for a litre of fork oil and a tub of SRAM butter when I only need a 15ml and a finger of grease is gonna be the painful part.

    Thanks for the recommendation on not replacing seals too!

    TheGhost
    Full Member

    I use Slick Honey it’s amazing.

    Mugboo
    Full Member

    I use an old roller paint tray to catch the oil with newspaper in and throw all my oily paper towels in as I work.

    Davesport
    Full Member

    Lowers service on most forks is straightforward. Replacing the seals, easy if you take your time & don’t damage the lowers levering out/inserting the new seals. Cleanliness is paramount making sure no dirt gets into the lowers on reassembly. A good starting point is spending 15 minutes cleaning the outside of the fork before removing the lowers. The damper side depending on which fork takes a bit more care & the adjusters on the top of the damper often contain miniscule springs & detent balls that vanish if you drop them :o(

    The video guides on Youtube are generally helpful. If this is going to be a first for you, leave yourself plenty of time.

    ChuckMorris
    Free Member

    Is it still easy enough to do without a stand?

    tjagain
    Full Member

    The “butter” is not needed. If you must you can buy much cheaper compatible grease but I just use oil.
    Just use motorcycle fork oil. Same stuff much cheaper

    Very simple without a stand. I do clamp mine in a workmate but have also done it without

    I cannot emphasise enough – don’t touch the seals if its not leaking – if it ain’t broke don’t mend it

    rockshox themselves do not recommend it for every service indeed for the forks I have its not on the schedule at all. some forks its every 8 services to change the seals as a preventative measure but I have multiple sets of forks oil changed many many times and never replaced a single seal and all work beautifully well

    the expensive liquids and greases and seal changing is a scam

    dogbone
    Full Member

    Anyone found a cheap tool for removing Fox 34’s lower legs? Fox tool seems to be about £50..

    Gunz
    Full Member

    It’s pretty straight forward but I echo the advice to get some good circlip pliers and syringes if required. Also, I use motocross fork grease which is a lot cheaper and, I’m presuming, the same stuff really.
    The only tricky bit I find is unscrewing the bottom bolts (Rockshox) and walloping them to unstick the lowers. It always feels a bit agricultural to me.
    Good luck.

    jamesoz
    Full Member

    Agree with the previous posts over ease and not changing wiper seals unless required.
    With my 2015 Pikes, they seem really sensitive to servicing compared to my 2016 Manitou Mattocs. If I was just using the Pikes I wouldn’t notice the drop in performance but switching between the two it becomes obvious.

    DrP
    Full Member

    The “butter” is not needed. If you must you can buy much cheaper compatible grease but I just use oil.

    The butter was the best thing i buoght for servicing the forks…. Honestly…

    I’ve used normal grease before, and I (YMMV) can definitely tell the difference…
    Oil just isn’t the same.

    TLDR: TJ refuses to properly lube up his shaft, the tight git.

    DrP

    martinhutch
    Full Member

    Anyone found a cheap tool for removing Fox 34’s lower legs? Fox tool seems to be about £50..

    Cheaper, rather than cheap.
    These guys are very good to deal with, too.

    https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Fox-Lower-Leg-Removal-Tool-Damper-Side-34-36-40/154071238865?hash=item23df5c88d1:g:VYsAAOSwOHRfF1Mu

    Airside would require another tool, but it’s far less fragile, so a punch/socket would be OK.

    HoratioHufnagel
    Free Member

    Yes I do ive done it for years. It’s very straightforward.

    I think the fox gold oil works well for lubing the lowers even on rockshox. Its very thick and stringy to keep it in place. Makes the forks very smooth.

    Last time I serviced my lyrik rcs I removed a preload shim from the hsc assembly too. That has the same effect as reducing the hsc on the rc2.

    molgrips
    Full Member

    Just use motorcycle fork oil. Same stuff much cheaper

    As an alternative opinion: Motorbike damper oil is the same as bike damper oil but it does vary between brand – some is better than others. But the big thing is that whilst 15 years ago forks were often open bath where you just filled them with damper oil, things are often more complex now. Some forks have an enclosed damper where the damper oil goes, then they can use a different oil for the lower leg/bushing/seal lubrication. This stuff has different properties to damper oil and it’s noticeably better if you use the leg stuff.

    I think the fox gold oil works well for lubing the lowers even on rockshox. Its very thick and stringy to keep it in place. Makes the forks very smooth.

    It needs the updated seals to stay in the fork though, at least on Fox forks – I forget which colour you need but it’s widely discussed and there are usually disclaimers all over the relevant products.

    samuelr
    Free Member

    I do all my own maintenance. Rockshox have good videos online.
    There is nothing difficult about it. Before starting make sure you have all the tools necessary and the right lube/oil. Then follow the process and keep everything neat and tidy and you can’t go far wrong.

    SirHC
    Full Member

    All forks serviced by myself, including damper oil swaps. If I sent them back every 50hours of ride time, they’d be away every 12 weeks!

    Its not difficult, use all the oils which are specified and do it in a clean area.

    Is it still easy enough to do without a stand?

    Its easier with a stand or the following, have done it whilst away and you need a second pair of hands when inserting the uppers into the lowers.

    -Got a vice and a piece of wood with a 1 1/8th hole roughtly drilled through and split?
    -Work mate or similar

    andybrad
    Full Member

    I really enjoy servicing forks and shocks. It helps to have the correct tools and ive experienced less issues servicing things myself than sending them off.

    only major things is keep everything clean, lots of paper towels and be methodical.

    slick honey is sram butter. and i would use these over the dynamic seal grease

    Always change seals that can come into contact with dirt. (wipers etc) but i agree with the not changing internal seals until it leaks.

    pdw
    Free Member

    I really enjoy servicing forks and shocks.

    I do it, but it’s one of the few bits of bike maintenance I dislike doing. Always ends up messy, despite my best efforts.

    wzzzz
    Free Member

    I do mine, fresh lower oil every other month or so its so easy and keeps them really supple.

    I use thin modern car engine oil

    beamers
    Full Member

    Cheaper, rather than cheap.
    These guys are very good to deal with, too.

    https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Fox-Lower-Leg-Removal-Tool-Damper-Side-34-36-40/154071238865?hash=item23df5c88d1:g:VYsAAOSwOHRfF1Mu

    Thanks for sharing that. I’ve just ordered the tool for my Fox 32 Step cast forks.

    Davesport
    Full Member

    A good gauge of whether or not the seals are goosed is excessive dirt in the foams or contaminants in the lowers when you drain out the remnants of the old oil. There’s no reason for it not to come out clean. When the fork compresses the air in the void space does the same. If the wiper fails to contain this due to wear then then the suck & blow effect draws whatever is outside down through the seal & into the fork. Wiper seals last me about a year.

    tjagain
    Full Member

    DrP. It still slides in nice and easily

    martinhutch
    Full Member

    Thanks for sharing that. I’ve just ordered the tool for my Fox 32 Step cast forks.

    Did you get the longer version?

Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 50 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.

Thanks for popping by - why not stay a while?IT'S FREE

Sign up as a Singletrack Member and you can leave comments on stories, use the classified ads, and post in our forums, do quizzes and more.

Join us, join in, it’s free, and fun.