Fork Drain Plugs Again
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Thread: Fork Drain Plugs Again

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    Senior Member sibyrnes's Avatar
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    Fork Drain Plugs Again

    i am amazed and a little P'ed off by the fact that Yamaha has eliminated drain plugs from the front forks on my 2017 TW. How much can it actually save them to do so? Changing fork oil has always been standard procedure for me. Now, what, I have to remove the forks and turn them upside down to drain the oil? That's just plain CRAZY!

    So, what is the best way to accomplish that. Do you guys loosen the pinch bolts and remove the tubes or remove the entire fork assembly including the yoke?
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    Senior Member TW-Brian's Avatar
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    I believe that the easiest way is to raise the front end off the ground, remove the front wheel, and then remove the fork legs. I use a marker to mark the top of the fork legs with respect to top triple clamp so they can be re-installed in the same orientation. I also loosen the top pinch bolts first, then loosen the fork caps before loosening the lower pinch bolts.

  3. #3
    Super Moderator Purple's Avatar
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    One at a time is simpler - note how the fork legs stick out of the top of the yolks for future reference....
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    Senior Member RockyTFS's Avatar
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    Jack up bike, put something under the rear tire so it doesn't tip over backwards. Loosen top triple bolts, unscrew top plugs on forks to finger tight, remove front tire, unbolt and hang brake calipers, remove speedo cable and plastic guides.
    Loosen bottom triple clamps and slide out forks. Fish out spacers and springs.
    Dump the old fork oil and use some ATF to flush. Exercise the forks to limits a few dozen cycles. Do this a couple of times until the ATF comes out clean.
    Now reassemble both forks to the triple trees leaving the final torque for later, but leave the top plug, spacers, and springs out. Add about 100 milliliters of 10 wt. fork oil and exercise the forks in situ, slowly and a few dozen times.

    NOW, take a 1/8 inch wooden dowel or other suitable dipstick and measure oil level from top of fork and add oil. Aim for 130 mm, perhaps 135 if you're below 170 and 125 if over 230. Use a bright light to see the dowel dimple the surface.
    Repeat a few times until you are reasonably sure the level really is 130. Add springs, spacers and top plugs.
    Now put the wheel back on and wiggle it a bit, torque the calipers, re-connect the speedo cable, torque top and bottom clamp bolts to spec and go riding! Now it's easy to adjust the level if you feel the need.

    Realistically, the TW only needs a fork oil drain, flush and fill about every 6,000 to 8,000 miles, longer in less dusty environments.....those dweeby looking rubber dust covers really do a very good job of preserving seals and keeping dirt out of the oil.
    Rocky
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    2014 BMW R1200GS LC

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    Senior Member RockyTFS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Purple View Post
    .....note how the fork legs stick out of the top of the yolks for future reference....
    Yolks are for omelets, Yokes are for oxen.....yuk, yuk.
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    Rocky
    2018 TW200
    2014 BMW R1200GS LC

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    Senior Member Peterb's Avatar
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    I'm really surprised none of us including myself have drilled and tapped the fork tubes yet. Who wants to be the next hero on the forum?
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    Senior Member sibyrnes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peterb View Post
    I'm really surprised none of us including myself have drilled and tapped the fork tubes yet. Who wants to be the next hero on the forum?
    That was exactly the subject of an earlier post of mine. If I go through all the trouble of removing the fork tubes I think I want to attempt that! Do you think the walls of the fork tubes are thick enough to support a tapped plug?
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  9. #8
    Ken
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    On my Radian, I put some FX 600 fork parts including the air valves on the fork caps. I have removed the Schrader valves and hooked up a hose to it. I then use a ratchet strap and collapse the forks some. I then poor the fork fluid into a measuring container then stick the hose down in it or use a small funnel and fill it, let the ratchet strap up slowly and it sucks the fluid right in. So basically I drain it from the screws and fill it from the top by removing the Schrader valves. I have the Tdub drain screws but haven't tapped the caps or anything on it yet. I'm not sure if the adjustable fork caps from EBay for the Tdub could be adapted to a Schrader set up or maybe plug it with a plumbing plug. It makes fork fluid change real simple. You just have to figure how many ounces it takes to meet your measurement.

  10. #9
    Senior Member Peterb's Avatar
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    "That was exactly the subject of an earlier post of mine. If I go through all the trouble of removing the fork tubes I think I want to attempt that! Do you think the walls of the fork tubes are thick enough to support a tapped plug?"

    I would think so. I would want to use a small tapered pipe thread but I'm not sure you can get a pipe plug that small.
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  11. #10
    Ken
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    I would order the actual drain screws for an older model and tap the fork legs to that. Just make sure you can get metric taps first.
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