dripping fork

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#1
Went riding today, and the most bizarre thing happened. My front brake felt weak, so I stopped to look at it, and saw oil dripping out of the bottom of my fork leg. It is coming from around the big hex insert in the bottom of the leg where the compression adjuster is located. Has anyone ever had this happen? Is there an o-ring under this big bolt that can be replaced? I haven't had a chance yet to pull the fork leg off and look at it.
 

Jaybird

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#2
:think ....hmmm you've obviously over-lubricated your brake cable!
 

xenasdaddy

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#3
spanky,

go to www.buykawasaki.com and look at the parts diagram for your forks. you will see parts #'s:

11009 11009-1592 GASKET,FORK CYLINDER BOLT
92055 92055-1156 RING-O
92055C 92055-1502 RING-O,FORK VALVE

not sure which of these you need though. i am sure someone else may know. my guess would be the gasket.

xd
 
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#4
Originally posted by Jaybird
:think ....hmmm you've obviously over-lubricated your brake cable!
Brake cable? And where would the cable be located, inside the hydraulic brake hose, maybe?

Thanks, ZD.
 

Jaybird

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#5
:p
 
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#6
Ok, I am trying to unscrew this big hex insert in the bottom of the fork leg to see which one of the seals (or how many of them:eek: ) failed, but it just turns and turns. Is the cartridge just spinning around inside the fork tube? Do I have to dissassemble the fork leg to replace the seals in the bottom, or do I need a cartridge holder of some sort?
 

marcusgunby

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#7
spanky you do indeed need a holding tool to stop the catridge spinning.Another alternative is to use an airtool to do it up/undo but be careful not to overtighten it-25lb/ft is all you need.To replace fork seal you dont have to undo the bottom bolt but as yours is now loose i would do a fork service,do a search and you should find jers done a very good thread on a step by step guide.
 
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#8
Originally posted by marcusgunby
To replace fork seal you dont have to undo the bottom bolt
I have to take this bolt loose because that is where the oil is leaking from, so the o-ring or gasket that seals the valve body at the bottom must have failed. What rots about it is I just changed the oil in the forks one ride ago, and put new brake pads on as well, which are now wasted from the oil contamination. I guess I should have known better than to be pounding through woops trying to race my friend on his KX 125 with my suspension set up for roots and rocks.:confused:
 

marcusgunby

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#9
The bolt assembly will leak if its loose as it has an o ring seal and a copper washer seal.The o ring will allow oil to blow by(im guessing) when the forks compress as the copper washer is the one that seals under the high pressure of the compressed fork.I would remove the bolt assebly clean it real well and refit with a small amount of threadlock and torque to 25lb/ft(KYB forks)The brake pads ive heard can be salvaged by placing in a hot oven for 30mins-dont tell the missus. ;)
 
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#10
Thanks for the help, marcus. Just one more question. Is there any way I can hold the cartridge without dropping dollars on a special tool that in all likelyhood I will only use once? I can neither tighten nor loosen the valve assembly, because the whole cartridge assembly just spins inside the fork.
 

AlynB

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#11
I had to replace my fork seals a couple of weeks ago. Did all the work at home then carried the forks to my local dealer and paid a couple of bucks to borrow their seal driver, then finished up at home. Point is , see if you can rent the tool from your local dealer or shop. I'm not sure how much the tool you need costs, but it's probably not cheap. You definitely want to use the proper tool, otherwise you risk damaging the fork tube, and I know these are expensive.
 
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#12
It isn't the fork seals I need to replace, I made a seal driver for them. I need to replace the valve-body gasket on the bottom, so I need to know how to hold the cartridge. The local Kawasaki dealer would laugh at me if I asked to borrow a tool, and tell me it costs $60/hour when I give up and bring the fork leg in to him. Needless to say, I don't frequent them very often. And I don't have an air wrench.
 

HLT

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#13
Spanky, I've had this happen on my son's bike and all I had to do was tighten the valve assy there in the bottom of the fork leg that you are trying to remove. It won't happen without an impact wrench though. Maybe you know someone with an impact you can borrow. Electric will work as well as air powered.
 

marcusgunby

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#14
Another alternative is to use a bit of pvc pipe cut at the bottom to match the top of the cartridge assembly.If you remove the top cap and spring and spring guide you will see the part i mean.The cartridge holder doesnt need to do the tightening-just a holder so it doesnt have to be a perfect fit or made of berillium :)
 

dirt bike dave

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#15
Spanky,
The notched PVC tube works just fine. My buddy made a holding tool by notching a metal tube from an old unused vacuum cleaner attachment. Can't get much cheaper than that.