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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Looking for a solid tutorial/instructions on how to simply change the springs and oil on Showa forks (newer SBK in this case). So far I've found only instructions for whole rebuilds (going through way too much to get to the springs), or the ones covered by Haynes pertaining to older forks. Should be simple, just want to do it right. Any links or other resources greatly appreciated.
 

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The simple answer is let a professional do it. The truth is you need a couple of special tools. There isn't any other way to push the spring down hold it down while unscrewing the damper adjuster rod or whatever it is called.
 

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You can buy the tool you need from Chris K. Then, in this order, loosen the cap while still clamped on the bike, remove leg , unscrew cap & turn upside down in a bucket for several minutes, remove spring (& remember the spacer sequence), pump the damper rod to remove the oil that is still in it, reassemble with new springs & 1 pint of fresh oil, reinstall cap but don't try to completly tighten until clamped back on bike.
 

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I've never pulled the fork cap on a duc....
But on all my other bikes, if you didn't loosen the pinch bolt on the upper triple clamp, the cap would not loosen.
 
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Sivan,
Ask Chris K how much he would charge you to swap it out when you ask him about the tools, you might be ahead so you don't have to buy all the tools...
 

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You're probably right speeddog, let's loosen the top triple & leave the bottom one snug. I just didn't want to see him take that thing off & then scratch the hell out of it trying to hold it & take that damn cap off.
 

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Norm, you're absolutely right. Best to leave it in something that holds it properly.
I just wanted to pass on information I learned the hard way... :-[
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks everyone for the suggestions. The tool referred to is the spring retainer, correct? How tight should the cap be, any recommended torque?
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Just got home with the RaceTech package, plus their video. Looks to be pretty simple. Actually simple enough that I'm thinking of doing the gold valve while I'm there. There are only two points of concern: their video shows a Showa from 1993, don't know what has changed since then, and for the gold valve it's possible that I'll need the cartridge rod holding tool but won't know until I actually try to take it out.

I'm riding this weekend, but will post an update when I get to it.
 
G

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I was going to recommend the vid if you haven't seen it...
my 2000 stockers are different from the vid but it helped
a lot to see it, makes it pretty clear and covers the important aspects of changing oil and even the valves.......let us know how it goes.....I am going through my SBK's soon also....
cheers..
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Finally got to it last weekend. Got .85 springs and US1 oil from Race Tech. Preparations were a PITA, but the change is relatively simple. I initially thought about doing the gold valve while I'm there but figured it would be simpler anyway to learn a little about the forks before tackling everything at once and focused on springs and oil alone.

The video was okay, but really the 4V Haynes should be used for this job. I initially thought I could do it alone, but eventually had a friend help with holding the spring compressor. I suppose it's possible to do this alone, with the right vise and experience, but it's tricky. I was surprised to find one fork with the correct ordering of spacer, shims and spring, vs. the other with spring, spacer, shims. Also found a piece of plastic, but all seals appeared undamaged, don't know where it came from. The fork is almost new, but has been sitting for a while and the old oil was pretty dark, glad I changed it.

I did tape the cap but still scratched it a bit, nothing serious. Other little **** ups, I didn't verify that the rebound adjusters sit at the same height before putting the caps back, so may have to reopen. Current settings are not at the extremes (got the right spring) so I'm not in a hurry. Also forgot to align the axle passage to the compression adjuster.

I've looked around for tools and found complete kits from Traxxion. The Race Tech spring compressor may be suitable for working alone, but it's a $100 more. The tools from Traxxion are easy to buy and are affordable.

To lift the bike I used a rear Pit Bull with the New Front conversion. I'm very impressed with the quality of this construct.

I can't really do a comparison, since I took off the stock non-adj. Showas which needed new oil badly. But from a few days of commuting, the damping is a lot better and there's less dive. (Also put a 2-way Penske).
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I still had to re-seat the rebound adjusters evenly. The Haynes manual omits this step for some reason. I did find some useful instructions on Traxxion, where I got the spring tools. Doing the forks again was a lot quicker this time and I was done in about two hours, I now get 16 clicks on both adjusters.

On a whim, I decided to check the range on the compression adjusters and was surprised to find 13 and 16. I didn't touched them for the spring job and couldn't explain the discrepancy. At this point I called around and finally After Shocks and talked to Phil. According to him as long as I can go in all the way and then pull out to about 8-10 clicks on both, it has no effect.

Overall, with the Penske 2-way in the back and finally setting the sag properly the bike handles great. I increased ride height by an inch with the heims (dropped forks a notch) and am going to increase some more with the shock.
 
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