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Fork Seals - Is this common

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Heya guys,

Got a quick question to see if this happens to everyone else.

It only rains once in awhile here in AZ. I have been lucky enough to get out riding in the mud after a good rain quite a few times this last year. But everytime I go play in the mud I come back with wasted fork seals. Cost me seals, time and brake pads everytime. Is this common? &%$#@!?

TIA

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Man if I had to replace those parts everytime I rode in the mud I would never get out.

I'm going to have to say no, that doesnt happen to everyone. Do you think its the wet sand that just grinds into everything? Does the sand get into the seals or do you have any scratches on your fork tube?

In MI, I come across quite a bit of sand but most of the mud is black/brown dirt so its very mild on the metal.

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Motoman,

a couple of things to help you out...I also Live in AZ and since January have been in the mud and wet stuff, but havent had the same problem. There are 2 things I know of to help you out in this...

1. Instead of buying the Yamaha fork seals, get the Honda 450 seals!!! They come with a dust seal that the Yamaha's dont!!

2. If you find your seals leaking, not puring out, you can use the 35mm film trick. Basically what you do is cut a couple inches of old/new 35mm film off, and take the edge of it and slide it up and around under the seal to clear any debris. Try this a couple of times to makesure you get any sand, mud, or grim out of the seal that migh be causing it to leak. Normally for a leaky seal this will fix the problem...

3. If option 1 & 2 dont work, then you might have something else that isnt correct!!

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Are you replacing your seals everytime they start leaking? Do you try the "camera negative" or "business card" trick first? I have had seals that I thought for sure were shot, slide the negative under the seal and presto.... no more leaks. Unless the seal is gouged you shouldn't have to replace them. :cry:

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Are you replacing your seals everytime they start leaking? Do you try the "camera negative" or "business card" trick first? I have had seals that I thought for sure were shot, slide the negative under the seal and presto.... no more leaks. Unless the seal is gouged you shouldn't have to replace them. :cry:

I completely blew the oil out of my forks coming up short on this-

a20.jpg

35mm film trick just couldnt do a damn thing to help me out on that one.

But I've never heard of that, so it sounds like a helpful hint. Thanks

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There are 2 04 YZ450 in my garage. One of them is my brother-in-law and the other one is mine. I ride both since he doesn't too much. Last time he rode was in September of last year and he rides fairly mild. No jumps just some very mild trails. His forks are leaking oil the second time he rode it. My 04 YZ450 still has not leaked and I ride it very hard on muddy terrain. So it seems like some of these bikes came out of the factory with very good seals and some that are just marginal.

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Motoman,

a couple of things to help you out...I also Live in AZ and since January have been in the mud and wet stuff, but havent had the same problem. There are 2 things I know of to help you out in this...

1. Instead of buying the Yamaha fork seals, get the Honda 450 seals!!! They come with a dust seal that the Yamaha's dont!!

2. If you find your seals leaking, not puring out, you can use the 35mm film trick. Basically what you do is cut a couple inches of old/new 35mm film off, and take the edge of it and slide it up and around under the seal to clear any debris. Try this a couple of times to makesure you get any sand, mud, or grim out of the seal that migh be causing it to leak. Normally for a leaky seal this will fix the problem...

3. If option 1 & 2 dont work, then you might have something else that isnt correct!!

The fork seals are pouring out. We didn't really do any jumping either, back way to Crown King in the mud, snow and water. It's coming out so bad that it's soaking my front brake pads.

I just had the seals replaced by Palo Verde Suspensions. I am going to try and get the bike back to him and see if he will warranty the seals this time. I thought these things were made for the mud.....:cry:

Thank you for the input. I will be sure and scope the tube to be sure there are no scratches that could cause premature failure.

Thanks guys.

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More than likely there you're getting dirt in the seals. As the others have mentioned you can get the dirt out with a card or film or whatever else you can fit in there to dig out the crapola with. If that doesn't work you might have to disassemble to clean them.

Another problem could be that you have a damaged for tube. A nick in the a tube will ruin a seal very quickly.

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Are you greasing under the dust wiper? Be sure you add some light weight grease under there, that really helps to keep the forks slippery and they won't grab the seals as much, and that might help to prevent dirt from getting under them. I've ridden in the mud too and have not had any leaky seals. Mud is hell on parts though...

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Keep a eye on your front wheel bearings. I had to replace mine after just a few rides in the mud. I found the replacements on E-Bay. Cheaper than Yamaha and the bearings are sealed on both sides. So far, so Good

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Motoman_AZ, I would love to show you the difference between OEM seals and Synergy Seals. All the things (modification, cleaning, replacing after one service) you have to do to OEM's (which really gaurantee nothing) you dont have to do with SFS. Oh and we actually have customer support :cry:

Good Luck, Rob

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Motoman_AZ, I would love to show you the difference between OEM seals and Synergy Seals. All the things (modification, cleaning, replacing after one service) you have to do to OEM's (which really gaurantee nothing) you dont have to do with SFS. Oh and we actually have customer support :cry:

Good Luck, Rob

I just checked out your web site and your seals look like an Excellent product...... all except for the price $73 is a little steep ($48 for seals & $25 for the required tool) :cry:

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Actually the tool is also sold seperate, and it is only required for WP forks.

Hope to hear from you,

KaBooM

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Just replaced a left side seal on my 426. Was surprised to find a bit of corrosion between the dust seal and oil seal. A bit of dissimilar metal action going on between the spring clip and outer tube, this caused a little grunge build up which didn't help the seal to be happy. The right side was fine. But I think the real culprit was the aluminum manufacturing shavings I found in the seal area upon disassembly. It's a crap shoot, some bikes will never have a problem, some will, maybe one side, maybe the other...

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Don't think twice, BUY the Scott Summers seal savers. Get the long ones. I blew out both forks 3 times the first 2 years I had the bike. I put the seal savers on and haven't had a problem with my 2000 YZF426 since. I recently pulled down the seal savers to clean out behind them and found no dirt or sand. I can honestly say it's the best accessory i've purchased. Look on Summers racing components to get more info.

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