If it’s not one thing, it’s another

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Leaking fork seal on my Valkyrie.

I finally got around to replacing the fork oil in my Magna. And while I was at it, I replaced the stock springs with progressives.
The bike sat in my carport for a week while I worked up the nerve to get started. I’ve only seen this done once before, and that required pulling the tubes out of the triple tree. Reading and researching, I discovered that I had lucked out on my model. On the Magna, there is an oil drain plug on the back of the tube. You don’t even have to remove the wheel. Just put the bike on a lift so that you can lift it, to decompress the tubes before opening the cap. Drain the old oil, reach right in and pull out the old springs, pour in the right amount of oil, put the new springs and spacers in, then replace the plugs and cap. Voila, you’re done.
You do have to cut the new spacers. The optimal length I need is 5.12 inches. The progressive kit included a single 10-inch piece of 1-inch schedule 40 pipe that you are supposed to cut to use as spacers. To keep each one from being a little more than a tenth of an inch short, I just popped down to the hardware store and bought another piece of pipe. Then, you have to add back the correct amount of oil. A little less (521 cc) for the progressive springs than the amount required for the stock springs. But last Sunday, I finally got it done. I was so happy to have both bikes running again.
I decided to ride the Magna for the next couple of weeks because it’s been setting up for a while. So I pulled the Valkyrie up on the sidewalk, inside the gate, where I keep it. I put the cover on it to keep off any dust, or rain that might fall. As I came out this morning, I noticed a spot on the front tire. I often let my little Yorkie out in the front yard to do his business, and my first thought was that he had marked the bike. No such luck. Closer examination revealed it to be fork oil, dripping from a busted seal.
If it’s not one thing, it’s another.

- Guy Wheatley

3 Responses

  1. WillieTKana Says:

    In all my bike owning and riding, i’ve never had ”front fork” troubles…just lucky I gess. Like I’ve never had a transmission of a vehicle 2 go out.. nor a ”flat tire” in a Wallmart parking lot….hehehe

  2. Guy Says:

    Well, while that is true, you have had “Hydrolock,” and a starter switch go out. ; )



  3. Don Nix Says:

    I guess I am just the opposite as I have never had a bike that i havent had to rebuild the fork seals on.The Victory has had fork seals three times, the last time due to a long trip that accumulated a plethora of bugs in the tubes that hardened after sitting several days. I rode the bike without cleaning the bugs off and they damaged the wipers enough to leak.

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