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Spada fork oil change and fork brace

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Martha View Drop Down
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    Posted: 23 Feb 2018 at 08:47
Hi!  I have found myself a 1979 Spada that has been dormant for a number of years prior to being re-commissioned (by a dealer) and then ridden for a short while prior to my ownership.  The re-commissioning appears to have been mainly aimed at the oils and filters, so prior to setting-to and riding it myself I have started to go through it to do all of the tasks that are frequently neglected, or which do not appear to have been covered (uj, carrier bearing, swinging arm bearing, rear wheel bearings etc).  I plan to do a more extensive cosmetic renovation once I have put a few miles on it over the summer months.  So far I have done the front wheel bearings and checked and cleaned up calipers/pads.  In each case their state has persuaded me that I am not completely wasting my time.  The next task is fork oil renewal, and possibly removing the stanchions to install gaiters, which brings me to two questions.
 
Firstly, with the wheel out so that the forks can extend, is it possible to renew the fork oil by only removing the centre allen head screw that holds the dampers rather than fighting the instrument panel off to remove the 32mm AF fork top nuts.  The various manuals, Oxford notes and Guzziology are a bit vague and a little contradictory on just what you have to do.  I envisaged using a syringe and tube to get the oil in but was unsure if it could drain past the damper/top nut owing to surface tension and the need for the displaced air from the fork leg to vacate the volume.  If the top nut has to come off, its not the end of the world as I have considered putting gaiters on to protect the stanchions, which brings me to the next question...
 
The removal of the stanchions would appear to be a task that is not undertaken lightly owing to the reluctance of the stanchions to free from the yokes.  Are they all that difficult compared with other bikes? Also, if I do decide to get them out at this stage so that I can add gaiters, is a fork brace a)worth putting on and b)compatible with gaiters.
 
Thanks in anticipation!
 
Alex
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cyclobutch View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote cyclobutch Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Feb 2018 at 10:48
The trick for the stanchions is not to try and lever the soft alloy of the yokes. Undo the pinch bolt completely, then screw it in from the other side. At the point that its tip is going to enter the plain hole in the yoke you put a bit of scrap metal plate over it so that the bolt pushes against it and spreads the hole a little. Take it easy.   

Butch
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Martha View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Martha Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Feb 2018 at 11:01
Thanks, yes I had noted that tip previously during a search through the forum, but will certainly use it (with appropriate caution!).  I intend to do a more extensive refurbishment once I have ridden the bike a bit, so if it doesn't come apart easily and with minimal disturbance to other parts I will wait and do the job 'properly' at that time, rather than risk damaging anything.  I know that if I am not disciplined it will turn into a full rebuild and I don't want to let it turn into that just yet, I want to ride it!
 
Alex
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote theone&onlymin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Feb 2018 at 13:08
Is there a wee screw in the back or front of the sliders that you can drain the oil from ? Some have. If so you could flush it out through there if you're not taking the forks apart. It's only for lubrication not damping.
Cheers
Min
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Jerry atric Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Feb 2018 at 14:08
Shame you have already got the wheel out as I find it best to remove that wee screw and pump the forks with the front brake on. That gets rid of the spurt of brown muck that is most likely sitting there.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote cugsy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Feb 2018 at 17:33
I put gaiters on my Cali EV. Theres the fork brace and not a lot of room but I put the gaiters on and then a cable tie around the fork/gaiter and jammed the brace on top and tightened it. Make sense..? 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mike H Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Feb 2018 at 19:07
Originally posted by theone&onlymin theone&onlymin wrote:

Is there a wee screw in the back or front of the sliders that you can drain the oil from ? Some have. If so you could flush it out through there if you're not taking the forks apart. It's only for lubrication not damping.
Cheers
Min

I tried this and couldn't do it (on my 1979 Spada). Oil won't drain out without the caps off to let the air in. Pumping forks to expel does nothing. Or very little. Ditto, pumping new oil back up into the drain holes merely overfilled and achieved a solid locked front suspension that wouldn't depress over bumps. Shocked ..!

No way around taking the top leg caps off I'm afraid. Think it's a 14mm Allen key, I managed with a long 14mm hex headed bolt, heated (by acetylene torch) and bent 90 degrees, not very strong tho so latterly I ended up buying a 14mm hex bit for 1/2" socket drive.

HTH

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Mike H View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mike H Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Feb 2018 at 19:15
Originally posted by Martha Martha wrote:

Also, if I do decide to get them out at this stage so that I can add gaiters, is a fork brace a)worth putting on and b)compatible with gaiters.

Mine had a Telefix brace on, AND gaiters, when I first had it I did have quite a bit of bother sometimes with the naff handling (trying to make me crash out on bends Shocked ), the fork brace and better rear shocks stopped that. Was quite good after that, only tending to weave a bit at 90 mph.

Make sure the fork brace is exactly the correct width for the forks else the sliders may bind. Guess how I know. Ouch That was the great thing about the Telefix, it was adjustable for width.


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Mike H View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mike H Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Feb 2018 at 19:19
PPS: you're right if it's not been used for a few years, mere oil changes are not sufficient so you're doing the right thing, everything needs looking at.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Martha Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Feb 2018 at 15:49
Hi, Guzzi forks are certainly different! I removed the top Allen head bolt (M8) in the stanchion top nut and the drain plug and found it started to drain ok. I then gently pumped the leg (no wheel) got out all of the old ATF... at least it was still recognisable! I had a look at the cross section in the manual and realised that if I kept on extending the leg I ended up with just the stanchions left in the yokes. I can thus feed gaiters on from below, which is just as well as the pinch bolts needed a impact wrench to free them. I think the stanchions can stay in the yokes for now! Filling using the syringe and tube method will therefore definitely work, I just need to extend the legs first to give it time to drain.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jpc Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Feb 2018 at 17:03
Martha keep in mind that

- By removing the the bolt in the top nut you've "liberated" the cartridge. It's next to impossible to "capture" it again without removing the top nut anyway.

- The rod and cartridge are attached to the leg and you'll need A LOT of clearance downwards to get them completely clear of the stanchions.

- To reassemble, the easy way after removing the top nuts, is to hand-screw the bolt to the top of the cartridge, attach a length of wire to the bolt, and thread the wire up through the stanchions to pull the cartridge through.

To summerize, there's no way to avoid removing the top nuts, and you'll curse yourself for not changing the seals while you could.  Smile
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mike H Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Feb 2018 at 17:42


Originally posted by Martha Martha wrote:

Hi, Guzzi forks are certainly different! I removed the top Allen head bolt (M8) in the stanchion top nut and the drain plug and found it started to drain ok. I then gently pumped the leg (no wheel) got out all of the old ATF... at least it was still recognisable!


As I said earlier, yes I did this too, yes something came out,  but not all of it.

It's all so unbelievably easier when you can do the job properly i.e. take the top caps off.

HTH Big smile


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mike H Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Feb 2018 at 17:55
"Chicken nuggets don't dance on a Tuesday."
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Martha Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2018 at 16:41
Thanks all. I had dropped the lower sliders, cartridge etc from the stanchions before seeing the posts above. Just as well that it proved easy to re assemble - just a case of feeding it all up into place till the cartridge touched the top Allen screw and doing up the screw. My forks are as per those in the Guzzi manual. The top nuts are 32mms hex with an M8 centre screw recessed in the centre that engages with the cartridge. No 14mms hex anywhere in the assembly - perhaps that is specific to later models? I now just need to await the gaiters!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mike H Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2018 at 17:35
Oh right the hex is on the OUTSIDE (just found a picture)

In that case big gas fitter's adjustable spanner LOL

(Got one of those too - is probably what I used)

(The 14mm hex recess was the 850 LM caps but couldn't see why they'd be different)



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