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Old 09-17-2019, 06:26 PM   #1
[JP]
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Default Changing fork oil on my 68.. what are these bits??

Changing fork oil on my 68.... Was wash bikes on Sunday and she was looking so pretty and thought giving her a fork overhaul.
what prompted me to do this is the fact that suspension operation somehow didn't seem right, it would jump up, for example if you were jacking the bike up, or sometimes moving the bike about. As if like there was no force extending the forks, till you lift the bike up by the handlebars, if that makes any sense.

Look at her sitting pretty...



Have taken it all apart, pretty dirty inside, reckon there's been water in there at some point.. 😕.. What would you use to wash it? Brake cleaner?

Manual says 7oz of Harley oil... What are my other options, does anyone know what weight it takes? 15W?

Also, on the photo below, I had a FL rebuild kit kicking about there's some parts that can't figure out where they go.. Either my fork didnt have it or I'm missing bits. Can't make it out in the manual either as it's so small! 🤓

Thanks!



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Old 09-17-2019, 07:31 PM   #2
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Default Re: Changing fork oil on my 68.. what are these bits??

Good choice giving those forks some love if they were sticking.

To my thinking, there is little chance of fixing the sticking just by cleaning up and reinstalling the damper components (shown in lower pic).

Likely causes for sticking:

1) Fork bushings are buggered up. If egged out or overly loose, they can allow the slider to cock against the leg (operate non-concentrically) and get stuck. Solution is to have legs rebushed.

2) Fork tubes are abraided/damaged. Look for vertical striations or even chrome rubbed away on the fork tubes in the range where the sliders operate. Solution is to replace for tubes. Good news is Frank's is still in business and has a good product. http://franksforks.com/

Both of the conditions above can be caused or made worse by operating the forks once water has entered. Particularly if it's been in there a while. It washes away the oil film on the parts allowing direct contact and QUICK wear.

Once you sort out the tubes-to-slider fit (with bushings and/or new tubes) you can make sure the damper parts are all in good order.

Have fun.

Jason
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Old 09-17-2019, 07:39 PM   #3
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Default Re: Changing fork oil on my 68.. what are these bits??

Oh, and the answers to the what are these bits question (just saw the green callouts on the pic) . . .

1) Paper gaskets that fit between part 4 and the damper tube INSIDE the fork.

2) Rubber seals that I believe are installed on the fork top tube plug before installing into fork tube. I don't use them as I haven't found that they work. Maybe I've been putting them in the wrong place!

3) Metal washers that install on the OUTSIDE of the fork leg down near the axle before the damper tube screws are installed. Seals sliders from leaking a the damper joint.

4) Damper tube bosses that fit at the bottom of the INSIDE of the fork legs. They are pressed/hammered into place. The flats keep the damper tubes from rotating when the retaining nuts are installed. If your existing ones are OK you can leave them.

Happy to be corrected if I'm wrong on any of this. The above is my personal understanding from doing this on my own bikes which I may have been doing wrong.

Jason
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Old 09-17-2019, 10:31 PM   #4
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Default Re: Changing fork oil on my 68.. what are these bits??

An oldtimer once reminded me that fork oil is not the oil to use in this fork. (Nuts, right?)

They were made for SAE 30, as that was what was available. A modern fork oil didn't exist when this was invented, because a modern fork didn't exist yet.

Take that for what it's worth, but as anyone who has run different weight oils in a juice front end can tell ya, volume and viscosity make a pretty yuge difference.
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Old 09-17-2019, 11:14 PM   #5
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Default Re: Changing fork oil on my 68.. what are these bits??

I run AW46, it's 20 wt. Yes you can run motor oil, only way it will give you any trouble is foaming on a really rough road. Hydraulic oils have been around since the late 1920's. My 1948-1957 Pan manual calls for Harley Davidson Hydra-Glide fork oil p/n 99880-49.
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Old 09-18-2019, 05:26 AM   #6
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Default Re: Changing fork oil on my 68.. what are these bits??

Quote:
Originally Posted by JasonMcElroy View Post
Good choice giving those forks some love if they were sticking.

To my thinking, there is little chance of fixing the sticking just by cleaning up and reinstalling the damper components (shown in lower pic).

Likely causes for sticking:

1) Fork bushings are buggered up. If egged out or overly loose, they can allow the slider to cock against the leg (operate non-concentrically) and get stuck. Solution is to have legs rebushed.
Thanks, yes a guy on the facebook group also said exactly this and there is definitely play on the bushings.
Need to look at how it all come apart and if there is a bushing kit available or I have to make my own.

and thanks for the explanation of where the bits go.
to help someone along if they come across this thread, I have added below a photo of where the parts go (was given by a guy on the fb group)



Quote:
Originally Posted by govmule84 View Post
An oldtimer once reminded me that fork oil is not the oil to use in this fork. (Nuts, right?)

They were made for SAE 30, as that was what was available. A modern fork oil didn't exist when this was invented, because a modern fork didn't exist yet.

Take that for what it's worth, but as anyone who has run different weight oils in a juice front end can tell ya, volume and viscosity make a pretty yuge difference.
30W.. yes, someone on the group also mentioned the same, but said 30W fork oil.

Quote:
Originally Posted by joe49 View Post
I run AW46, it's 20 wt. Yes you can run motor oil, only way it will give you any trouble is foaming on a really rough road. Hydraulic oils have been around since the late 1920's. My 1948-1957 Pan manual calls for Harley Davidson Hydra-Glide fork oil p/n 99880-49.
thanks, that goes along the lines of what they have said, Hydra-glide fork oil, which they mentioned was the equivalent of a 30W.

Thanks!!
Let's how I get on.. I'll keep this updated with photos.
Would be nice to get it sorted. it's really the only bit, mechanically speaking, that my 68 needs doing.
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Old 09-18-2019, 05:36 AM   #7
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Default Re: Changing fork oil on my 68.. what are these bits??

and just found this thread somewhere else, pretty good explanation and photos about doing the bushes.

http://www.caimag.com/wordpress/2014...-step-by-step/
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Old 09-19-2019, 06:21 PM   #8
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Default Re: Changing fork oil on my 68.. what are these bits??



took it all apart today, laid it on the table.
I understand the sticking is due, very likely, to fork bushes, but dont have the tool to remove them and the time for that operation as need the bike off the operating table and into the corner, so I'm cleaning and refurbishing everything else and putting it all back together.
The forks operated well, was just the sticking that could have been nice to fix... but have to leave it to another time.

Took me a while to figure out all the gaskets, where they go, even looking at the replies here and 2 manuals - as the parts showing on the service manual differ from the ones on the parts manual, plus the drawing wasn't making sense in my head... all good now.

Have put part of it together, struggling to press the fork seal in the lower leg, so gave it a rest for today. Could do with a press, but don't have one ....
and need to find some 30W oil.
unless I could use SAE30 Harley oil, I think I have some kicking about and never used. I think it was primary oil...can't remember. I think I bought it and then went open belt.
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Old 09-19-2019, 07:11 PM   #9
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Default Re: Changing fork oil on my 68.. what are these bits??

Hi JP,

I have the same job coming up.

A guy I know swears by 30wt mixed with standard hydraulic jack oil. Sounds insane to me but if anyone else knows of this recipe Id like to hear if its Good or Bad.
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Old 09-19-2019, 10:46 PM   #10
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Default Re: Changing fork oil on my 68.. what are these bits??

Sounds insane to me too. I've always used Italian-style salad dressing (Kraft or a similarly reliable brand; don't trust the cheap dressing from Taiwan).
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Old 09-20-2019, 05:51 AM   #11
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Default Re: Changing fork oil on my 68.. what are these bits??

hydraulic jack oil and 30W?? damn... that does sound insane!
I might just get the normal 30W fork oil.... and wait till I get it in the post. If I was going to use what I have about I'd be able to put it all together this evening, but I'll just wait.
will see if I can get somewhere with next day delivery
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Old 09-20-2019, 11:21 AM   #12
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Default Re: Changing fork oil on my 68.. what are these bits??

Jack oil is hydraulic oil. AW46 is common. Jack oil or hydraulic oil with a ISO # of 46 works fine. Motor oil will also work. Put it together.
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