Storing bike to avoid fork seals leaking

Discussion in 'Common Items on Husqvarnas: Tires/tubes/grips/etc' started by waserman, Jan 4, 2011.

  1. waserman Husqvarna
    AA Class

    Location:
    Delaware,USA
    Husqvarna Motorcycle:
    09 TE510
    Other Motorcycles:
    BMW KTM Honda
    Ok this may have been discussed before but I haven't seen it.Sooo after having forkseals on numerous bikes leak during periods of storage various brands both Euro and Jap,How do you store yours?The bike I am talking about now 09 TE510 open cartridge 50mm Zokes,I've had the inverted forks both on a raised lift or stand and just parked start weeping after sitting,and then for the most part stop after resuming riding the bike again.I 'm begining to think they develope a flat spot or something from inactivity,sort of like a flat spot in car tires from sitting.I went out in the garage the other day to find the tell tale puddle in the right fork side and proceded to do the 35mm film strip routine,they didn't appear to be very dirty.The bike isn't worn out so I'm assuming that the fork internals(bushings) are still within tolerance.I am really surprised at the torque value of the triple clamp pinch bolts from the manufacturer 18.4 ft/lb,seems to me most of the other bikes I've owned over the years were more in the 12-14ft/lb range,especially the lower clamp.I did go over and check out the 06 625SMC in the other corner of the garage to see if it had started to weep,so far it's good.Any ideas I've stored both off the ground and on the ground maybe leave a little weight on the suspension?
  2. Coffee CH Owner

    Location:
    Napa CA
    Husqvarna Motorcycle:
    2006 TE250 2013.TR650 Terra
    Could it be temperature related? Ever try storing the forks in a warmer place for the winter?
  3. waserman Husqvarna
    AA Class

    Location:
    Delaware,USA
    Husqvarna Motorcycle:
    09 TE510
    Other Motorcycles:
    BMW KTM Honda
    The bikes are all stored in a garage that is somewhat heated,the house
    heater is in the front of the garage and the exhaust stack runs through the garage so it stays about 45-60 degrees in there.I don't think the wife will let me bring them in the family room,where the heat is somewhat more consistent.I'm not sure that the temp is playing a roll but it could.
  4. Coffee CH Owner

    Location:
    Napa CA
    Husqvarna Motorcycle:
    2006 TE250 2013.TR650 Terra
    Well it was an idea, probably not a good idea, but it was an idea...

    Perhaps someone with more knowledge will post their thoughts.
  5. pvduke Husqvarna
    Pro Class

    Location:
    ... on the gas...
    Husqvarna Motorcycle:
    '12 WR300
    Other Motorcycles:
    kicked to the curb
    on or off the stand, just cycle the fork every so often to keep the seal wet. if it stops seeping after first post-storage ride yer good to go. fork seals take and awful beating im suprised they seal at all sometimes. even on the stand i'll grab the bar stradling the front fender and pull down several times like setting an axle when replaceing a front wheel to compress the fork and work the action after they sit a while. make sure the axle is free and set properly. at home i dont film or grease pack seals either.
  6. waserman Husqvarna
    AA Class

    Location:
    Delaware,USA
    Husqvarna Motorcycle:
    09 TE510
    Other Motorcycles:
    BMW KTM Honda
    :thumbsup:Thanks for the ideas and thoughts,I guess the best thing to do is not let the bike sit too long and ride it,or exercise the suspension.Coffee I'm thinking of asking the wife about having some ducts vented into the garage so I or should I say the bikes are less likely to have temperature variable induced problems.I'm sure she doesn't want her bike to have any issues either,although I've yet to see that bike have the same problem.There I probably shouldn't have said it.
  7. pvduke Husqvarna
    Pro Class

    Location:
    ... on the gas...
    Husqvarna Motorcycle:
    '12 WR300
    Other Motorcycles:
    kicked to the curb
    cold dry air is best. warm air holds more moisture. either or just give them a few bounces now and then and that's the best you can hope for if the axle is free, set and the fork is bled of air before ya store it. fork seals are fickled. they can look fine and still pour fluid (Showa *barf*). fimling is fine on the trail but, all that does is push the contaminant into the fluid bath then it usually finds its way back, can also cut the inner lip. grease under dust wiper can dry out and cake, htis gets under the lip and props it open. also lubricates contaminants and makes it easier to get past oil wiper.
  8. Slowpoke Husqvarna
    AA Class

    Location:
    Southern Ontario
    The only reason your seals are leaking is because either they are damaged/worn and/or the fork sliders have some nicks/scratches in them.
    Seals/wipers don't develop 'flat spots' as they are in constant tension on the same surface all the time, whether the bike is moving or not. The seals wont dry out due to the type of material they are made from - especially on a bike that's only a couple years old.
    Fork seals are essentially repurposed designs very similar to those that are used on hydraulic cylinders. They can handle thousands of PSI of of pressure etc. on a hydraulic cylinder and not leak & the ones on your forks will easily handle the weight of a few hundred cc's of oil sitting on them. The only way they can leak is if they become compromised somehow.
    The film strip routine only works if you do it all the time - ie. after every ride, from when the seals are new.

    Simply put, your forks need servicing.
  9. pvduke Husqvarna
    Pro Class

    Location:
    ... on the gas...
    Husqvarna Motorcycle:
    '12 WR300
    Other Motorcycles:
    kicked to the curb
    film strip thingy is a trail-tip. never do this every ride. shoving things up into your seals, esp something sharp, is asking for it. keep the area on both sides of dust seal clean and problems are reduced for the oil seal above it. i've had customers come over with knicked oil seal lips from stuffing things into them to dislodge foriegn matter. does it work? sometimes. but again, it's usually pushing the contaminant into the chamber or between the two lips.

    seals can weep- fine, no big. 99% do. look under a car sometime. a lot of service manuals even say this is normal for some systems.

    if they leak and affect fluid levels- teardown, inspect/measure everything and replace as nec. there's no permanent magic bullet for a puking seal in most cases other than new parts.
  10. Slowpoke Husqvarna
    AA Class

    Location:
    Southern Ontario
    PV- cleaning under the wipers(ie. with a piece of filmstrip etc.) is a perfectly fine regular maintenance procedure- as long as it's done properly. If someone is doing this procedure and shoving stuff up under the seal, then they aren't doing it properly.
    In lieu of doing that procedure, it's better for most guys to use a pair of Dirtskins instead;
    Attach with a hose clamp, thoroughly clean underneath every week/ride & coat interior with a light oil.
  11. vegtablebrain Husqvarna
    A Class

    Location:
    Canada
    Why is it that the fork seal that leaks is always on the disk side?
  12. pvduke Husqvarna
    Pro Class

    Location:
    ... on the gas...
    Husqvarna Motorcycle:
    '12 WR300
    Other Motorcycles:
    kicked to the curb
    slowpoke- if it werks fer ya then i cant dispute yer results. :thumbsup: i dont recomend it as a maint proceedure.

    i think it's cuz the left side is my prefered "crash side". :busted: ill risk a busted cl lever over a mashed pipe and no front brake. :p
  13. Trailridernut Husqvarna
    A Class

    Location:
    Texas
    I agree with slowpoke 100%! 40 years, never had a leak unless they are worn.