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Old 04-10-2008, 04:16 PM   #1
GaelicDog OP
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Someone walk me through a fork spring change.

OK, I am looking to get some stiffer front springs for the 990. I know back in the "old days" the springs were somewhat easier than they are today.

I own a KTM/WP fork cap wrench so that part is easy.
I know to loosen the top triple clamp and loosen the fork cap.

Now we're into assumptions.
I assume I need to compress the fork to expose the top of the cartridge assembly?

What wrench size is the top of the cartridge?
I assume I hold the cartidge via the wrench and using the fork cap tool seperate those two parts freeing the spring? Is the spring under pressure as the cap is removed from the cartridge? Once separated is the spring a drop in installation?

Other than finding a wrench thin enough to hold the cartridge nut do I need anything else??
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Old 04-10-2008, 04:35 PM   #2
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Once you loosen the top clamps, remove the caps with your special wrench, put something under your bashplate so the bike doesn't drop too much.
Once both caps are removed, the suspension will drop to full compression as you just released both springs.
Lower the bike slightly to expose the cartridge and 22mm nut that you need to hold with the wrench(I used anormal one and it fit) press down on the spring, hold the cartridge with the wrench and undo the top preload nut (24mm) untill the whole cap assembly is in your hands.
The spring is under some tension so you'll have to press down to remove the cartridge holding wrench, remove spring, replace with the new one and reverse procedure.
Make sure all the washers are counted for (there are two under the cap)
and what ever you do, DONT SMOKE ON TOP OF THE TUBES (experience speaks)

while you're at it, with the springs removed and your forks collapsed is a good time to check for oil level, should be about 100mm from the top.(only measure that if the forks are plumb)

It may sound long but you can have her back together in less than a couple of beers
Good luck.
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Old 04-10-2008, 07:30 PM   #3
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Some pics of my SE spring swap, might help. I did this w/ the forks installed in the bike, and did not change or check oil height. That's for when ever the bike is out of service and have time to do that. Maybe next winter???



support bottom of leg, once the caps are off, the front end is going to want to fall forward, Put bike on center stand and put about 50lbs on the rear rack. (large car, truck battery)



Loosen up top triple clamp around forks.

Turn black rebound screws and compression adjustment counterclockwise all the way out.

Use tool to remove caps.



Jack forks all the way up to to expose spring caps.



I made a thin wrench at work to fit in, 22mm. Check bike shops though, I heard they can be had for cheap there.

I could do this part by myself, but having extra hands is a big plus. One set to help pull the spring down and one to put the cap on and tighten down. Don't walk away to far as the center tube is going to drop down slowly to the bottom. So, have everything handy. If it does drop down in.......get a large magnet on a stick and pull it slowly back to the top. Don't ask how I know.



Hold wrench, loosen caps w/ cap tool.





Difference in length from SE to stock 06 "S" springs. SE are shorter.



I made some spacers to fill the extra space and reinstalled.



So far so good.
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Old 04-10-2008, 07:30 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adiablolex
Once you loosen the top clamps, remove the caps with your special wrench, put something under your bashplate so the bike doesn't drop too much.
Once both caps are removed, the suspension will drop to full compression as you just released both springs.
Lower the bike slightly to expose the cartridge and 22mm nut that you need to hold with the wrench(I used anormal one and it fit) press down on the spring, hold the cartridge with the wrench and undo the top preload nut (24mm) untill the whole cap assembly is in your hands.
The spring is under some tension so you'll have to press down to remove the cartridge holding wrench, remove spring, replace with the new one and reverse procedure. (You forgot the part about holding the cartridge in place or it will sink into the shock. But an easy fix! I also used a tie down strap from the lower triple tree through the wheel to compress the fork. I did mine one at a time. Now to get her dialed back in!)
Make sure all the washers are counted for (there are two under the cap)
and what ever you do, DONT SMOKE ON TOP OF THE TUBES (experience speaks)

while you're at it, with the springs removed and your forks collapsed is a good time to check for oil level, should be about 100mm from the top.(only measure that if the forks are plumb)

It may sound long but you can have her back together in less than a couple of beers
Good luck.
Thanks!
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Old 04-10-2008, 10:15 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GaelicDog
Thanks!
Hey GDog,
if the cartridges end up falling into the tubes (and they will ) you just lower the bike into the forks and before the seals hit the bottom, you should be able to revive it. (careful as the bike gets heavier the further down you go, it would also be a good idea to have a strap holding your centre stand from folding)
In CJ's awesome thread he's got the bike level and raising the forks to get the springs out , in my case I'm teetering it on the centre stand droping the bike lower,(rear tyre high) which also allows me to check the oil level too. Just make sure the tubes are plumb(ish) when you check it.

BTW, you need to take both caps off to do it this way.

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Old 04-10-2008, 10:27 PM   #6
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Let me ask this.

What is the cap tool look like and were do you use it?
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Old 04-10-2008, 11:18 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gefr
What is the cap tool look like and were do you use it?
It basicaly has two little studs that insert to the corresponding holes alongside of the preload adjustors.
I made my own by modifying an old grinder key.
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Old 04-10-2008, 11:43 PM   #8
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I see now.

It is catching in the holes of the caps. Thnx.
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Old 04-11-2008, 08:47 AM   #9
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Another question, The fork manual mentions an o-ring associated with the adjustment tube.....anyone come across this o-ring? I could not find it.
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Old 04-11-2008, 10:01 AM   #10
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I believe the oring is in the bottom of the cartridge and should come up with it as you remove.
You can see that in the parts breakdown.
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Old 04-11-2008, 10:13 AM   #11
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Mine didn't have one and I was looking! My guess from looking down the fork last night was the O-ring is probably there to keep the adjuster tube from rattling. I seem to remember another bike that had one about mid-way down that tube.
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Old 04-11-2008, 10:13 AM   #12
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Another trick for the cartridge falling down, needing three hands scenario...

Just put the 22mm wrench on there, right where the spring wants to sit. Slowly "screw" the spring, the 22mm nut has a slight collar and will compress the spring, allowing you to have plenty of thread to put the fork cap on, and only needing 2 hands. I tried the magnet thing, this trick works great.
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Old 04-11-2008, 02:42 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailah
Another trick for the cartridge falling down, needing three hands scenario...

Just put the 22mm wrench on there, right where the spring wants to sit. Slowly "screw" the spring, the 22mm nut has a slight collar and will compress the spring, allowing you to have plenty of thread to put the fork cap on, and only needing 2 hands. I tried the magnet thing, this trick works great.
Used that method last night!
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Old 04-12-2008, 03:37 PM   #14
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No need for adjuster tube o-ring

Quote:
Originally Posted by GaelicDog
Mine didn't have one and I was looking! My guess from looking down the fork last night was the O-ring is probably there to keep the adjuster tube from rattling. I seem to remember another bike that had one about mid-way down that tube.
KTM stopped using the small o-ring on the rebound adjuster tube after 2003, so no need to worry about it's absence.

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Old 04-12-2008, 07:18 PM   #15
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I've done a spring swap this way, and by just removing the forks, and I think it's easier to just pull the forks. Just an opinion.
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