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Welcome to Track848!
If it’s time to change the oil in your front forks, stick around, I’m gonna show you how
I do it! Start this project by recording the current
fork position. You can measure with a ruler if your forks do not have rings like mine. You’ll need standard tools. I’m gonna use
a screwdriver handle and rubber mallet to tap the front axle out. Eventually the bike
has to be raised, and I’m gonna use my Pit Bull stands to do this. I use Ohlins 23 cST fork fluid, which is a
little higher viscosity than the stock recommended fluid for my bike. Check your User’s Manual
for the recommended fluid for your bike. Remove the front fender. And I have a new
air filter to install, so these air ducts need to come off. If you’re not renewing your
air filter, check to see if you can access the lower triple bolts, and if you can skip
this step. I like to loosen up the clutch and brake reservoirs
to provide better access to the triple clamp and clip on bolts. My fork cap is 32 mm; loosen the cap 1 1/2
to 2 turns. By doing this now, you’ll be able to get it off by hand once it’s off the
bike. Remove the brake calipers. And you can use
bungy cords like I am here to support these during the project. Take the axle nut off, and then loosen the
pinch bolts. You can see where mine are here; your bike might be different. The front axle should tap right out. Keep
track of any spacers; my bike has one on each side of the wheel–and they’re different sizes–so
take note of yours. Reassemble all of the wheel components the way they came off, and
then set it off to the side. Now go ahead and loosen up these last two
bolts that are holding the fork in place. And once you get em loose, go ahead and remove
the fork! Loosen the fork cap by hand, and pull it out
2 to 3 inches away from the tube. And now you can start pouring out the old fluid. After the initial pour, turn the fork cap
counterclockwise until it clicks, then tighten it down in the opposite direction. Pump up
the fork to work more fluid out of the inner assembly and then do another pour. Re-tighten,
pump the fork and pour again. Do this 3 or 4 times; I stop once the fluid
starts to drip like this. And this comes out to be about 405 cc, or about 92 percent of
the total fluid amount recommended in my User’s Manual. Measure out the same exact amount that you
took out, and start pouring it into the fork. Pour it in slowly to minimize air intake. Pump up the fork several times and then set
it off to the side to rest, and to let the air percolate out. After the resting period, the fork should
go all the way down without ‘smacking up,’ against the bottom. The fork travel on these
forks is 127mm or 5 inches. Make sure all cables are routed properly,
and reinstall the fork to its original position. Make sure the clip-on pin is located properly,
and snug these bolts. We’re gonna properly torque em in a minute, but first go to the
lower clamp and torque these two bolts using a 1-2-1 pattern. Now, back up top, loosen these bolts again
and snug down the fork cap. Just a slight snug, that’s all that’s needed here. Torque the remaining bolts, and do the other
fork. Now that the other fork is completed, we can
reinstall the front wheel. Make sure the two spacers are in place and
that you apply a good coat of grease on the axle and the nut. Hand-tighten the axle nut
and lower the front end. Using a screwdriver push the pistons back
in to the caliper, and then very lightly, spread the brake pads apart. This will allow
the caliper to go straight on to the rotor with no interference. Torque the caliper bolts then pump up the
brakes–and while holding the brake lever in–rock the front end like this to center
the calipers on the rotors. Tighten the pinch bolts on the side opposite
from the axle nut first. Then the axle nut and pinch bolts this side. And that’s it!
Give yourself a pat on the back: You just renewed the fluid in your front forks! I have more videos over at my YouTube Channel
‘Track848,’ and if you’d like to receive a notification when I upload new videos, go
ahead and click on the subscribe button at the top of this page. Leave your comments
below; And, if you like this video, give me a thumbs-up, I appreciate the feedback.
Thanks again, I’ll see you the next time! Goodbye.

64 thoughts on “How to Change Motorcycle Front Fork Fluid / Oil

  1. I've only recently found your videos, just wanted to say keep it up. I absolutely enjoy watching the HOW TO's like this one! Loving them

  2. Man you know how much i love these lol…bloody awesome work. I have never attempted the forks but you make it look easy. Great stuff! Big thumbs up!

  3. Quick question regarding rocking the front of the bike after the brake calipers bolts are torqued. The manual for my monster 1200S states:

    Front brake calliper retaining screw (RH+LH) M10x1.25 45NM +/- 5% GREASE B

    Front brake calliper pre-tightening for settling (RH+LH) M10x1.25 2NM GREASE B

    It was my understanding this meant to do an initial torque to 2NM, then pump the brakes and hold the lever in while doing the final torque of 45NM.

    Is that basically accomplishing the centering process? Is rocking the front while the lever is held in going to move the calipers at all after the bolts are torqued?

    Thanks again for posting these videos and replying to the comments. The logic and process to maintaining these machines is almost as rewarding as riding them! If you get a chance it would be great to see your process for timing belt / valve adjustments!

  4. Great video, question, I have an 04 r1, Im sure the oil has never been changed (35k). I also have a light clunk in the front over small bumps or when first applying the brakes. Its not the headset bearing, I checked the torque. Can it be cause the oil is old or something else in the forks?
    Thanks

  5. Found you through 650ib! What an amazing channel you have, and it fits me perfect as i have a 848 Evo trackbike that i will be doing my first season on this year. Up untill now i have some videos of some track sessions on a 695 Monster!

    Definitely changing my fork oil asap, but what is the benefit of going from a 7.5wt to a 5wt? I'm probably on the heavier side of the small italians that ducati setup stock bikes for….

    Keep up the good work!

  6. Is the method for getting the calipers centered on the rotor generally the same bike to bike? I know of reading something similar on the forums about needing to do what you're doing to get the forks in the "neutral" position while holding the brake and compressing the forks. But I've also read that you don't want to hold you brakes while doing so and somewhere else I read that you want to hand tighten the caliper bolts then compress the suspension and then torque down the caliper bolts.

    Seems to be a whole mess of peoples opinions when it comes to anything relating to putting the front wheel back on the "right" way and getting the right sequence of pinch bolts tightened.

  7. Fantastic video, factual, to the point and all the information I need to do it myself
    I need to change the oil in my Showa 43mm forks (Triumph Speed Triple 2010) after the suspension 'specialists' cahnged the springs and piston sets but put in 5W oil instead of 10w and to the wrong level so the rebound and compression adjusters don't work, and I am riding on the springs only!
    Now I have watched your video I have the confidence to do this myself, it will save me a 150 mile round trip and another day off work to get the specialists to sort out their problem.

    Many thanks
    RT

  8. Excelente Video para cambiar el aceite de la suspensión, voy a tratar de hacerlo con mi scooter =), Thank you!

  9. THANK YOU!!!!!!!!! Iam going to do this to my 03 zx6r. I did not want to rebuild the entire fork like other videos show you… Thank you!!!

  10. Nice vid. I always though you were meant to take the whole thing apart to clean all the old oil from all the components as well though?

  11. What a terrific video. Clear and precise. Many thanks – I'll go and change the oil on my BMW XCo now I've seen this.

  12. why you need to turn the fork counter clockwise until it click? does any fork have to do this? what if you font turn counter will affect anything? my bike is cbr 600rr 2005.

  13. Nice a video on fork oil replacement only. I dont think mine need all the bushings and seals, but I want to change the oil.

  14. bro you forgot to check for cracks on dust seals and oil leaks around seals before you refill it ? or to check for drain plugs some bikes have at end of shocks.!

  15. Great video man. I have the same bike. I wanted to ask if you thought about getting 30mm off-set triples and/or the flat-rear link? Furthermore, it pears you've upgraded the rear-shock, did you upgrade the fork internals as well?

    Thanks in advance. Oh, liked and sub'd!

  16. i have a 2008 848, what is that tool to get the seal inside the fork? I need to get it to replace my seal

  17. good but I don't know why someone should change their fork oil and not the seals. I would do them both at the same time.

  18. only thing you did wrong was holding the brake while lining the forks. Your not lining the brake calipers push down on the Triple Tree to align the forks on the axle then you tighten them down that's the point of pulling down on the front end like that

  19. really you need the top cap off and rebound rod out to do this properly as you need to set the air gaps identical in each fork. doing it your way whilst I get is fast and a quick refresh only.. kinda assumes an exact amount of oil was in there to start with and that both legs have the same amount in both pre and after?

  20. After the initial drain would you not introduce air into the cartridge by pumping the fork to obtain the fluid inside of the cartridge?

  21. Excellent video, thanks for sharing, this video help me a lot with my 848 2009!! Keep up the good work!!

  22. great straight to the point video but I wouldn't torque the fork pinch bolts until you have the front tire fully seated on the axle. You're essentially saving any headache if you dont have the fork aligned. Good vid though!

  23. Just what I was looking for! I've got an 01' ZX-12R that has fork oil from 03' when I had Race Tech Springs and gold valves installed. I think it's time to change it! 😉

  24. I enjoyed the video. You make this look like a very doable project. Does measuring the removed oil take away the need to measure the height of the fork oil?

  25. i have 16k miles on my bike. it is a weekend toy. I don't commute nor ride on the rain….it is just a toy for the canyons on the weekend. the suspensions still feels good. how many miles before changing the oil? also I have my suspension dialed in…if I change the oil, will the settings in my suspension need to be set up again?

  26. That oil was fine.. No need to change oil on a regular basis. If so drain plugs would be in the design. Auto and truck shocks are generally lifetime. Todays oil chemistry is so much more tolerant and better quality with additives that can live and perform much longer than oils of yesteryear. Some newer synthetic engine oils for example can withstand 12000 miles under rigorist conditions. Its a matter of choice I suppose and how you use your bike ie dirt biking , etc and how much labor is involved.. To each is own .

  27. Thanks for the tutorial. I just ride on the street. I have a 2012 ninja 1000 16000 miles. I know it’s over due . Do you think I will notice any difference on the street?

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