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Old 12-07-2009, 10:12 PM   #1
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Question fork seals again

so i've got a tlr with now 36xxx, forks have been leaking since 2 thousand miles. went to a shop to get new seals put on TWICE (leaked once, then got redone(warranty) with "oem" seals/bushing and leaked again. so the shop advised me to just get another set.

found some gold busa forks (99-07) seem to still good-ish condition. installed on sunday and just a short chilled ride nothing serious (it was wet out) 10 mile (not even) ride to school this morning then back in garage. go to look at them and the right (passenger side) has wet up the bottom fork

just moments ago went to comfirm and yep, a little small puddle under the fork. cleaned it off with some break cleaner and put a paper under to monitor leakage. i will set the forks to stock and go "pump" the forks and monitor them

1. how often do they go out?
2. wear on the forks, (i read somewhere that use fingernail test)?
3. suspension settings have anything to do with it? (i didnt set it to standard) just put them on. i'll set them up once i find the specs.
4. did i f-up somewhere along the line? like a break in step?

suzuki forks suck or is it me??


now for the wear on the forks, its got a gold coating that has halfway worn off so strait metal is showing... like a eclipse of the moon (circumference of fork not longitudal up and down). the dust seal is still nice and rubbery not britle and cracked. info on the forks is unknown i got it from a friend that just had them chillin in the garage. but certainly looks like it has alot less than my 35xxx on them.

no i dont wheelie, no i dont stoppy,....
i've dumped a considerable amount of change into forks and it seems like it goes nowhere

i'll post pics if needed. can i do this myself? im very well mechanically inclined and have tools. i hardly ever go to a shop.
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Old 12-07-2009, 10:47 PM   #2
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I know your pain. One of mine was leaking so much that it was dripping on my wheel, and I thought I was gonna have to get them replaced.

Try this first. Either get a piano wire tool from a tranny shop, or make one out of some small metal tubing and some strong metal wire(or bring it by and Ill try my best). Take the outer seal down and ease that piano wire tool in there and run it around the seal. Mine had a piece of trash stuck in at. That was prob 2k miles ago, and its still not leaking on me.
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Old 12-07-2009, 11:15 PM   #3
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along with the piano wire, you can get some (new or used) 35mm camera film, and run it in between the inner fork tube and the fork oil seal. if there is any dirt/debris in there, it will work it out. also check for proper oil level... ive seen many instances where the forks were over-filled and basically "hydro-lock" and pump fluid out thru the seal.

thats my $.02
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Old 12-07-2009, 11:25 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mx6er View Post
now for the wear on the forks, its got a gold coating that has halfway worn off so strait metal is showing... like a eclipse of the moon (circumference of fork not longitudal up and down). the dust seal is still nice and rubbery not britle and cracked. info on the forks is unknown i got it from a friend that just had them chillin in the garage. but certainly looks like it has alot less than my 35xxx on them.
If the TIN coating on the forks is worn you'll never get a seal to hold.
When the coating wears it has small razor sharp edges that will rip a seal to shreds in a small amount of time.

What was wrong with your original forks?
Were they pitted or scarred?
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Old 12-08-2009, 07:44 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick View Post
If the TIN coating on the forks is worn you'll never get a seal to hold.
When the coating wears it has small razor sharp edges that will rip a seal to shreds in a small amount of time.

What was wrong with your original forks?
Were they pitted or scarred?
i dont know what the threshhold limits are but i was told the fingernail trick works well. yea it has some longitudal scratches and such from wear. shop attempted to fix with new seals and bushings but no avail
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Old 12-08-2009, 08:47 AM   #6
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pics up. BIG pics for a detailed view.

bhi2c5
this is left side (clutch)
2vvm5ih
this is right (throttle) side (one that is leaking)

guru's lmk what you think. i will try the film/buisiness card/small feeler gauge to clean off the inner seal and we will see how that goes. BTW tire is on the ground not up in the air if it matters (i think it does)

over the night it didnt leak any but i bet once i get on a ride it will

does anyone have the standard busa front fork settings? cant seem to find a solid answer, just alot on tuning susp... (which i know it should be tuned) i just want to make sure everything it set correctly

unless someone has a chart for my 5' 7-8'' 200 lbs fat azz...
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Old 12-08-2009, 08:49 AM   #7
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I'd say you have a damaged fork maybe? A scar or scratch?


Could be whoever put them on last forgot somthing or damaged the seals installing them... As my old autotech teacher used to say "who was the idiot that worked on it last" lol
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Old 12-08-2009, 08:51 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hooligan View Post
I'd say you have a damaged fork maybe? A scar or scratch?


Could be whoever put them on last forgot somthing or damaged the seals installing them... As my old autotech teacher used to say "who was the idiot that worked on it last" lol
pics r up. i have seen other forks off yamaha's that have gold coatings that have worn off and didnt leak... thats y i didnt suspect much when i saw the worn off coatings

i'll report back after the cleaning later tonight

and i did wipe them down before i installed them FWIW
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Old 12-08-2009, 08:53 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mx6er View Post
pics up. BIG pics for a detailed view.

bhi2c5
this is left side (clutch)
2vvm5ih
this is right (throttle) side (one that is leaking)

guru's lmk what you think. i will try the film/buisiness card/small feeler gauge to clean off the inner seal and we will see how that goes. BTW tire is on the ground not up in the air if it matters (i think it does)

over the night it didnt leak any but i bet once i get on a ride it will

does anyone have the standard busa front fork settings? cant seem to find a solid answer, just alot on tuning susp... (which i know it should be tuned) i just want to make sure everything it set correctly

unless someone has a chart for my 5' 7-8'' 200 lbs fat azz...

Almost looks like something is misaligned or bent. Is that scar just on one side of the tube?
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Old 12-08-2009, 08:54 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick View Post
If the TIN coating on the forks is worn you'll never get a seal to hold.
When the coating wears it has small razor sharp edges that will rip a seal to shreds in a small amount of time.
The gold coating on the lower leg is a very hard substance called Titanium Nitride, TiN for short. When it wears away the fork is gonna leak.
The pictures show worm TiN, so... leaky fork.
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Old 12-08-2009, 09:28 AM   #11
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So you replaced the forks and their leaking? That's odd

seals can take a beating... is it the same shop putting these on?


Take it to Motorcycles Unlimited
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Old 12-08-2009, 10:04 AM   #12
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Quote:
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So you replaced the forks and their leaking? That's odd

seals can take a beating... is it the same shop putting these on?


Take it to Motorcycles Unlimited
i would but the cost of getting yet another set and/or fixing them again sucks, but especially when u work for comission in this slow car biz...

yes the forks were completely changed out with the set of busa forks. unknown miles/year.

is the uneven wear abnormal? what are the causes of it. (wear on one side?)

i would love to take it to Motorcycles Unlimited but for me go to way across town just for patrick to tell me i need another set etc... not worth the time (not knocking the shop its just my time/money shortcomings)

the only thing the "shop" that i will NOT speak of did is my forks seals (which went bad after a week or two), everything else was done by yours truely. did i f-up somewhere on the install?? i wouldnt think there was much to it??

Last edited by mx6er; 12-08-2009 at 10:06 AM.
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Old 12-08-2009, 10:09 AM   #13
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and i just bought the gold forks and installed them... just for clarification
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Old 12-08-2009, 10:54 AM   #14
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Old 12-08-2009, 11:05 AM   #15
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Stock forks have some decent vertical scores. Which I assume is now useless because seals were redone twice. Maybe shops fault? so what now? Another set of forks?
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Old 12-08-2009, 11:33 AM   #16
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those "leak proof" seals are POS. i have gone through several sets on the gixxer (inverted) without doing anything crazy... the ONLY way to go is OEM suzuki, honda, etc... seals. this saves you time, money, and frustrations
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Old 12-08-2009, 11:57 AM   #17
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Your forks are fubar.
I only use NOK seals. They make them for all the mfr's and Race Tech as well.
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Old 12-08-2009, 12:38 PM   #18
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Quote:
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Your forks are fubar.
I only use NOK seals. They make them for all the mfr's and Race Tech as well.
nothing you can do huh?

not even with my old ones?
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Old 12-08-2009, 01:04 PM   #19
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Do your old ones have nicks, scratches or lines in them?
If so than I won't do them because they won't hold up. I'm not going to take your money when I know it can't be fixed properly.
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Old 12-08-2009, 01:12 PM   #20
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OEM seals FTW. If you can score a good set of forks and some seals I have everything to change them out.. just did 2 sets of TLR forks last time home.

Motorcycles Unlimited is a standup shop.
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