Painting the front forks? (DRZ-SM)

This weekend we got a second 2006 DRZ-SM from a guy down on the California coast. The price was right and the bike looked good in the pics, but once we got there it was very easy to tell this bike had lived its entire life close to the ocean:

 

 

AA37D9C4-25FA-4087-95B2-969F808135DE_zpsC8295653-8922-478A-8C72-4240C74F650C_zpsEBD84D07-8B2E-43BD-9A17-54CD09D69ADF_zps

 

(and that's just the forks)  :cry:  :cry: 

 

The corrosion looks as though the aluminum is being eaten from the inside, a cancer beneath the anodized layer. When you sand it, some of the bits look as though the actual rusting goes pretty deep.

 

I've been told there's a guy locally who can rechrome the bottom tubes within spec, and I'm trying to weigh all my options. We've got a media blaster that could take off all the anodizing and aluminum oxide from the fork uppers, then we can apply a layer of paint to them, get them powder coated, or re-anodized. Or, I can find a "new" set of tubes on Ebay for $500-900. Thing is, I like the idea of doing black tubes, but also want to keep within some kind of budget, or at least know all my options.

 

Has anyone else done this before? Any thoughts on how to proceed?

Edited by Ladyeclectic

I think you would be better off picking up new forks. Generally you can get a set 400-500 if you wait for a deal. 

 

I think you'll have that much in just refinishing what you got. Not to mention there's  no guarantee the forks will be salvageable until you blast them.

 

Just a tip, I use the left over fork oil I have to occasionally wipe down the forks with to prevent rust. Just a light coat of oil, also keeps stuff from really sticking (like bugs). Might not be a great idea for an off road bike, but for my road bikes it works great.

You can always get long seal savers and cover up the exposed sections on the top,  as the lower section is covered up by the plastic guard,  thats what i would do,  they make em in different colors as well.

 

BTW really glad to see you finally working on your bike again,  glad you got some of what you were owed back. 

You can always get long seal savers and cover up the exposed sections on the top,  as the lower section is covered up by the plastic guard,  thats what i would do,  they make em in different colors as well.

 

BTW really glad to see you finally working on your bike again,  glad you got some of what you were owed back. 

 

Thanks, I'm pretty thrilled too. The cams for the BB/stroker engine came in today which was the last thing engine-wise we needed, so that's going together finally. Still waiting on the carb and the exhaust, but hot damn we have enough stuff to make a real bike!! ...or at least one that looks like a real bike, if not quite a runner.  :ride:

 

These pitted forks are on the second DRZ which, for now, isn't getting the love like the first one. But at least it's rideable, which makes it several steps ahead already. :thumbsup: The first DRZ looks really good, now it just needs an engine and plastics.

Put the fork tubes on a lathe, spin them up and polish them up.

maybe go a custom route and get them blasted and power coated?  this is assuming the rust isn't too bad of course.  could really open up some possibilities for a personal touch.

The lowers need to be replaced, thats the only correct way. The uppers could be powder coated. Hope you got a smokin deal on it to deal with that much rust.

So has the Yellow one been sitting with all that rust and not ridden? Are those fork seals leaking? If it's been sitting and isn't leaking, $5 says it starts leaking as soon as you put some miles on. Throw those inner tubes out and replace them if you ever hope to have a leak free setup.

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now