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How to get the forks aligned?


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I ran my second harescramble yesterday and this morning while cleaning my bike I noticed that the front tire was pointing to the right about 2 inches. That explains a few get offs! Anyhow, I loosened the upper and lower triple clamps and twisted it somewhat straight. My question is what is the sure way of getting it dead straight? Can you measure it somehow? I couldn't figure out a fixed point to measure from.

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Make sure forks are sticking out same distance above top triple clamp. Tighten everything (triple clamps, axle, axle pinch bolts only hand tight. Spin front wheel and grab front brake. Do this several times. Once again measure height of fork tubes above triple clamp, if still OK, tighten everything up. Hould be aligned.

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The glass method will allow you to align forks in the triple clamps. Good idea. However, with the wheel out, the lower fork tubes can rotate so that the wheel may not be aligned to the fork tubes.

So if you then use my method, after the glass method and after tightening the triple clamps, to align the wheel, you should be fine. Its not necessarily by sight. If your rotor is straight and you caliper is attached to the fork properly, you can basically use your rotor to do an automatic alignment of the wheel to the forks. However, as staples... suggests this will not fix severly twisted triple clamps.

I think both methods used in combination will have you fixed up.

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OK, I did the spin wheel method and it looks straight. Rotor is straight and spins freely. However, when I kneel down in front of the 756 tire and look right down the center of the split knobs, the oil drain nut is just to the left of the center of the tire. Like I said, everything looks lined up, execpt for this. I think the nut might be off center to begin with. Anyone else ever notice this? Thanks fellas for the advice. I love this place.

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I got jumped on last year, and I think my front end is still tweaked. I tried 3 different versions of aligning the front end and it still looks off. If I ride it weekly, I do not notice it.If I ride after a few wekk hiatus, they look tweaked again. I may actually have a slight bend in the factory bars.I tried using the front fender as a guide, but I think there is enough warpage in the plastic that this is an unreliable indicator.At any rate, my front fender, and my front tire are not in very good alignment.Welcome to the club...lol

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I have found that most times when the wheel gets crooked, it is an axle bolt problem. I loosen the axle pinch bolts and push up and down on the forks a few times with the front break on. When I am in the woods, look closely to figure out which way the wheel is turned then kick it a few times to straighten it back. It is more stable when aligned, and wants to be there, it often pops back into alignment with a little kick.

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You can't go by the front fender because it is bolted directly to the lower triple clamp. I have taken off my fender a few times to then visually align the forks using the front wheel and the bars. You can have the front fender handle bar looking great and the wheel still aiming off to the right or left.

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My fender looks like a thugs hat! Cocked to the side. I am not using that method. I have it lined up as good as it is going to get I guess. Thanks for the help. I sure was worried that I had bent forks. That would have shut down my racing for awhile.

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guys - one tip that has not been mentioned but which is a very common problem on yz's is that the axle bolt is often bent from new. All the above tips work - but can still leave the front feeling "not right" - more suspension wise than anything else. I know from experience - had my brand new 03 revalved and at the tuners test track it felt great - however - came home, put decent front tyre on, put back together using all above tricks, went and rode and it felt terrible - lots of stiction, big spike, not tracking at all. I knew it wasn't all valving as a couple of mates have the same setup and their bikes are awesome. Anyway - went back to tuner and started eliminating possibilities - off went fork seal savers, made sure axle aligned, bled forks etc - still terrible - loosened pinch bolt and spun axle with big allen key - wheel moved about 1/2" side to side = bent axle - took out axle - put on runout dial marked high point and put back in so highpoint is at 90 degrees to forks - beautiful - feels like a new bike. A bent axle pushes the forks in if it is parallel with them, the same as if not aligned in pinch bolts. This is worth checking if you can't get your suspension right.

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