Yamaha Starbike Forum banner

1 - 10 of 10 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi guys and Gals,
A little history before my question: My son purchased a 2009 V-Star 1100 Custom in April. In May he had a " mishap" with the bike in which the fork was apparently mildly bent. I bought the bike from him, damaged, and have fixed all issues except for the dent in the gas tank and what I believe is a slightly bent left fork. This leads me to a series of questions which I am hoping someone with much more knowledge than me could answer. First, does anyone know where to acquire a gas tank for this particular model of bike? I have ordered two of them, both times to be told that they are on back order. Second, can the fork be straightened by replacing the upper fork tube, the part I believe is bent? Third, are there any good videos out there with step by step instructions on how to rebuild the fork if it can be repaired? Looking on Youtube I have found many videos and I am trying to narrow it down to the best. Any help in these areas would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance.

Oh, also, does anyone know of any gatherings of people with these great bikes in or around the Houston TX area?

Again, thanks.
 

·
Super Moderator "Loose Nut"
Joined
·
7,990 Posts
Noticed this is you first post. If you post a hi in the New Members Introduction section, we can get to know you and your bike.


For your parts needed try:

I would suggest to replace any forks that has been damaged. High speed front end wobble, front tire wear and inefficient braking can occur even with the slightest front fork issue. EBay is another option. Keep us posted.

I'm in Houston and try to organize several get togethers a year for local riders. Here's a few examples.


 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,679 Posts
Front forks are very easy to fix, the top tube comes right out when you remove the allen screw in the bottom fork. Just look at the manual when refilling the oil, read it and understand it , this is where mistakes are made.
I bought a very good set off of ebay, all you need to do with them is dump the oil and replace it.
Tanks you can find on ebay also.

Welcome to the forum, you have a lot of good people close to you in Texas that can help.
 

·
Registered
2001 Yamaha XVS650 Dragstar Classic and 1999 Honda NT650V Deauville
Joined
·
409 Posts
If you slacken the pinch bolts in the triple clamps after removing the wheel and fender, you can rotate the fork leg in the triple clamp while preventing the lower leg from rotating. If the stanchion is bent, the lower leg will move. If the lower leg is still, the leg is straight(ish) and it may just be that the triple clamps have twisted. To straigthen it, have the steering stem nut, upper triple clamp pinch bolts and front axle with pich bolt all slack. Wheel and brakes in place. One pinch bolt on each side of the lower triple clamp should be snugged up to prevent the forks from coming up through the triple clamps. Apply the brake and vigorously pump the forks repeatedly. Make a visual check that the handlebars and wheel sit 90 degrees to each other. Once satisfied, tighten all bolts from the bottom up.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
14,061 Posts
Front forks are very easy to fix
i don't know much about servicing forks. but i have seen people talk about them and seen video of routine maintenance of one - changing out the oil/spring. and to say it is "very easy" doesn't seem to fit even for professional mechanics. at the least it looks very time consuming with a strong recommendation of having some advanced and expensive equipment to aid the process that has several steps. putting gas in the tank is "very easy." servicing the forks does not look to be in the same ballpark.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
52 Posts
Forks actually are pretty easy,not much to them. Can be a little messy sometimes if your not careful draining the old oil. As far as being bent. If you think they might be bent dont mess around and just replace tubes. Even the slightest tweak can cause weird and unpleasant handling issues.
 

·
Registered
2001 Yamaha XVS650 Dragstar Classic and 1999 Honda NT650V Deauville
Joined
·
409 Posts
While it may not be very easy, it typically is straight forward, albeit time consuming, and 8 out 10 times can be done with basic tools in my experience. There are several benefits by doing it yourself; you practice your skills, you have time to clean everything properly and inspect everything as well, whereas a shop will just strip and refit as fast as they can in order to make a profit. That is why I do all the work on my own bikes - I can afford to spend the time it takes to make things right.

BTW, a bent leg can be straightened in an hydraulic press by yourself if you do not require 100% accuracy - I did that for a friend back in 1992 who had bent both stanchions, and he still rides the bike today. I got the legs 98% straight, and no functional issues were noticed. Even a perfect fork will bend a lot just during normal riding.

OK, here is how I go about servicing my forks:

With the fork leg still in the triple clamps, slacken the damper rod bolt in the bottom of the forks. It often helps to TIGHTEN the bolt slightly first to break it lose before undoing it. If the bolt spins, try an impact driver og give the wrench a few hits with a hammer. Sometimes, though, 2 out of 10 times, you will need an electric impact/ driver or an air rattle gun to get it going.

Once the bolt is out, oil will begin to flow. Have a tray ready to place underneath.

Now slacken the upper triple clamp pinch bolts and break lose the spring retainer caps if they are threaded, but do not remove them yet. If they are held by circlip, do nothing yet.

Slacken the lower triple clamp pinch bolts and remove the fork legs. Do one side at the time. On some bikes, the legs can come rushing down, so support them by hand when undoing the pinch bolts to prevent an accident.

Since I remove one leg at the time, I also drain one before I undo the next. I place the leg in the drain pan, then remove the spring retaining cap. NOTE: It will be under pressure, so make sure you use a socket and a ratchet to remove threaded caps and push down until you can feel the cap is free, then gently release your pressure. Caps held by circlip can be a pain to remove; you need to push down on the cap, then use a sharp screwdriver to remove the clip and then gently release pressure. The stanchion should now ideally fall slowly down on its own, but often there is too much static friction for this to happen and you need to push it down. Remove any washer, spacer and spring inside and place on a clean rag. Then pump as much oil as you can out of the leg. Repeat for the second leg.

On really old bikes, the stanchion can now be separated from the lower leg, but most bikes made since 1980 will need some more work before separation.

Remove the dust seal and the retaining circlip for the oil seal and clean out the area as best you can. Lift the stanchion up from the lower leg and notice where it stops, usually with a clank. This is where the lower plain bearing its the upper plain bearing inside the fork. You have to work the stanchion and lower leg apart in a slide hammer fashion. Usually, you can just do a Bullworker motion between the two parts, but sometimes it can be necessary to put one of the ends in a soft jaw vice while yanking hard on the other end. Use extreme caution not to damage the surface or shape of the clamped part! I prefer to use the lugs for the brake caliper to hold the lower leg. YMMV.

Once the upper and lower legs are separated, you can inspect the bearings for wear, clean the inside of the lower legs and inspect for scratches or wear. New seals should always be used when assembling. Use a seal driver to prevent damage on the stanchion and seal. You can make your own from a thick-walled plastic pipe of a suitable size. To protect the new seal from damage when driving it home, I put some lube on the outer and inner surface and then put the old seal on top after first grinding off a little of the outside to prevent it from sticking in the lower leg.

Next, once the leg is together and the lower retaining bolt is inserted*, fill with oil of the desired grade. Oil viscosity, not volume, dicate the damper characteristics, so use one that suit your preferences. Gently stroke the fork several times to get the air out, otherwise you cannot get a correct reading of the level. I always measure the height instead of relying on the volume. I also vary the level depending on fork action; more oil = firmer, more progressive springing towards the end of the stroke. *Sometimes the damper rod can spin, and if so I temporarily fit the spring and retainer to tighten the bolt. If it still spins it is time for the rattle gun again. Or you could use a took to hold the damper rod.

Refit the springs, spacers and washers in the correct order and put on the retainer. Put a thing ring of grease around the stanchions before you fit the dust caps and pump the forks hard and repid a few times. This will force grease inside the seals and dramatically reduce stiction. Fit dust seals. Refit forks in the triple clamps according to the manual.

I may have forgotten something obvious, but hopefully the two of you who bothered to read it all could pick up a hint or two. And always use a manual to guide you as well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
If you slacken the pinch bolts in the triple clamps after removing the wheel and fender, you can rotate the fork leg in the triple clamp while preventing the lower leg from rotating. If the stanchion is bent, the lower leg will move. If the lower leg is still, the leg is straight(ish) and it may just be that the triple clamps have twisted. To straigthen it, have the steering stem nut, upper triple clamp pinch bolts and front axle with pich bolt all slack. Wheel and brakes in place. One pinch bolt on each side of the lower triple clamp should be snugged up to prevent the forks from coming up through the triple clamps. Apply the brake and vigorously pump the forks repeatedly. Make a visual check that the handlebars and wheel sit 90 degrees to each other. Once satisfied, tighten all bolts from the bottom up.
Just wanted to take a second and reply to let you know that this worked perfectly. Took about three tries but in the end solved the problem. Now I know not to automatically assume a bent fork when this kind of issue arises. Thanks for the guidance and for taking the time to reply. Safe and happy riding.
 

·
Registered
2001 Yamaha XVS650 Dragstar Classic and 1999 Honda NT650V Deauville
Joined
·
409 Posts
Very glad to hear it worked out for you :cool:
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
Top