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 2003 DR650 Fork Rebuild

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Posts : 42
Join date : 2010-11-21
Bike : 2003 DR650

PostSubject: 2003 DR650 Fork Rebuild   4/18/2011, 4:46 am

Finally got to rebuild my DR650 forks, they have about 13,000 miles on them. The seals were worn and leaking, and the fork tubes had significant play in them. After installing the new bushes, all the play was gone, and the fork cycled smoothly. Here are the parts involved:

All Balls fork seal kit and fork bushing kit, $55 from E-bay. The All Balls seals have a double seal lip, and the kit is quite complete: upper/lower bushes, seals and dust seals, brass washer, fork cap o-ring, and seal retaining clip.

Here are the new bushings in front, the old bushings in back.

This is the fork disassembled with all the parts layed out:

Here is the worst offender, the plastic cap on the end of the damper. It is critical to assemble the fork properly to not have the fork "lock down."

To start the rebuild, we made a very high-tech special tool, to hold the damper assy while loosening the allen at the bottom of the fork leg:

While you can make a special tool using a 1 inch nut and some smaller nuts, we got inventive!

So, take the fork apart by pulling the fork tube out. The seals and upper/lower bushes will come right out. Then, clean the fork legs out, there was a lot of grit and fine particles in the oil. I used solvent and compressed air to clean the forks out.

Then, put the new lower bush on the fork tube:

Lather up the fork tube, damper and fork leg with clean fork oil. HERE IS THE MOST IMPORTANT PART: when slipping the damper back into the fork leg, make sure the plastic spacer on the end of the damper protrudes from the fork tube.

Then, slide the fork tube in, and just snug the allen bolt tight on the damper. Cycle the fork tube up and down to make sure its free, and not bound up. Insert "special tool" and tighten allen bolt. We just tightened by feel.

Next, install the upper fork bush, using the old bush and a drift to tap it in place. Next, the large steel washer on top of the bush, the fork seal, and the dust seal. Lastly, the clip to hold everything in place.

Gently tapping the dust seal in. Make sure all the seals completely seat in the fork tube.

Lastly, add 10wt fork oil, should be filled to 6.5 inches from the top with fork springs removed. Make sure to cycle the oil through the fork several times to ensure the oil is flowing through the damper and there are no air bubbles. Then install springs, preload spacer, and top cap.

Now the forks are ready for a big ride this Spring through New Mexico!

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Posts : 931
Join date : 2009-02-20
Age : 52
Bike : Honda XR650R

PostSubject: Re: 2003 DR650 Fork Rebuild   4/18/2011, 5:58 am

thumb "we made a very high-tech special tool"

My kind of tool! Nice write up!

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Posts : 591
Join date : 2009-01-01
Age : 47
Bike : 08' KTM 530 EXC-R, BMW F800GS

PostSubject: Re: 2003 DR650 Fork Rebuild   4/18/2011, 7:16 am

Thanks for the write up. thumb

YamWow! It's made in Japan. You know the Japanese make good stuff!
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Posts : 843
Join date : 2009-08-04
Age : 41
Bike : 09' DR650SE

PostSubject: Re: 2003 DR650 Fork Rebuild   4/19/2011, 7:43 am

Will be doing springs and seals on my DR, this will come in handy. Nice write up !
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Posts : 843
Join date : 2009-08-04
Age : 41
Bike : 09' DR650SE

PostSubject: Re: 2003 DR650 Fork Rebuild   5/8/2011, 11:01 am

OK, so I put new springs and fork seals in yesterday, wow, its nice haveing the front end sprung for my waight. Went from a factory .40kg spring to a racetech .80kg. Huge diffrence, the new ones are not progressive. The factory ones were. Set preload same as factory, will ride it that way and see if i need to increase it. Also went from a 10w fork oil to a 15w and so far its good. The old oil looked brand new, not much for wear, but the bike only has 3800 miles on it. This was a pretty easy mod to do and just what my DR needed. Thanks for the special tool tip docterDR, it worked perfect. hopefully by the end of the month I can get a new shock spring orderd and I think i will be done with suspention for now.

This is what my tool looked like.

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2003 DR650 Fork Rebuild
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