How to Rebuild Mountain Bike Forks

How to Rebuild Mountain Bike Forks
Mountain bike forks, or the shock on the bike, are somethings that can wear out and need to be changed. They serve to absorb the impact of various rocks, roots, drops and other challenges that a mountain biker might encounter along a trail or off-road adventure. The rugged nature of many mountain biking trails make the shocks on these bikes one of the more important pieces. Most mountain bikes have both front and rear shocks with the front shocks being called the fork.


Difficulty: Moderately Challenging

Things You’ll Need:
  • Cleaning rag
  • Compressed air
  • Cleaning solution
  • Dust seal
  • Oil seal
  • 2 platform valve seals
  • Loctite
  • 2 end cap seals
  • Shock oil
Step 1
Clean the shock thoroughly with a rag to get rid of any excess dirt on the outside that could work its way in during rebuilding. Dump the dirty oil from the main body of the shock. Remove the floating piston from the reservoir using compressed air and drain the rest of the dirty oil from the shock body.
Step 2
Rinse the body with a cleaning solution and leave to dry. Remove the piston head, end cap and dust seal. Install a new dust and oil seal and insert the main shaft in the end cap.
Step 3
Replace the platform valve seals and reinstall the piston head onto the shaft using fresh loctite. Replace the floating piston seal and partially fill the body with high quality oil. Reinstall the floating piston into the reservoir making sure that no air gets trapped underneath it. This is the trickiest part of the process so take the proper time to complete this.
Step 4
Replace the reservoir cap seals and fasten the cap to the body. Finish filling the body with high quality oil until it is completely full. Under filling the body with oil may result in you needing to replace the shocks at a sooner period than 40 to 60 hours of riding time.
Step 5
Replace the end cap seals. The end cap, shaft and piston are all ready for re-installing at this point; however, be very careful not to trap any air bubbles inside the bike shock. This could lead to malfunctioning bike shocks after the entire re-installment has occurred.

Tips & Warnings

Take your time as you rebuild mountain bike forks. Moving too quickly can cause damage to the interior parts or the bike itself.
Don't take the bike on a difficult trail until you have tested the new forks on a safer, flatter riding area.

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