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? Fork Seal Leak


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#1 orgndnr

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 11:07 AM

The last few days I have noticed a very fine film of oil on my left fork after a ride. I presume the seals leak. My question is, do I have to replace them right away with such a small leak, how soon will it get worse, etc.

#2 slowf2337

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 11:16 AM

I woundn't worry about it until it is really leaking. It will make a big mess, all over the fork when it blows. For now just keep it clean and as dry as possible. If dirt sticks to the "slight film" of oil it will act like sand paper on the sealing surface. Also, FYI never use those "leakproof" brand seals they are junk! OEM only.

#3 NVR2L8

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 11:31 AM

About 6 months ago the left fork seal on my '05 leaked just a little at first, but it quickly got worse and there was quiet a bit of fluid on the leg after just a short ride. If it was me I don't think I would put it off, since you don't want the fork oil making its way to the caliper and brake pads. If it does, then you'll also be replacing brake pads when you have the left fork serviced.

#4 SEBSPEED

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 01:45 PM

About 6 months ago the left fork seal on my '05 leaked just a little at first, but it quickly got worse and there was quiet a bit of fluid on the leg after just a short ride. If it was me I don't think I would put it off, since you don't want the fork oil making its way to the caliper and brake pads. If it does, then you'll also be replacing brake pads when you have the left fork serviced.


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#5 VFR_Brandon

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 02:06 PM

Welcome to the club. Mine starts to leak every 6 months. Im on my 3rd set of seals.

#6 jeremy556

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 03:08 PM

Welcome to the club. Mine starts to leak every 6 months. Im on my 3rd set of seals.

Have you replaced the bushings? Check the forks for straightness and nicks?

#7 squirrelman

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 04:30 PM

a cotton sock tied tightly around the lower fork leg will prevent fluid from getting to brake parts.

#8 swas

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 04:38 PM

The last few days I have noticed a very fine film of oil on my left fork after a ride. I presume the seals leak. My question is, do I have to replace them right away with such a small leak, how soon will it get worse, etc.


A slight film not a big worry, when it begins to run down the fork leg to threaten brake pads and discs definitely a worry. On a previous bike, which had a lot of trouble with fork seals, I sometimes managed to delay, sometimes postpone, new fork seals by getting some soft cloth to clean out the seal using a feeler gauge to get it down past the seal. That is the actual fork seal not the humungous crud shield sitting visible on top. I eventually lengthened serviceable periods by stuffing between the seals with thick felt - theory being that helped stop rough stuff getting to the seals!

Sometimes one little bit of grit can cause a small leak. If the seals are gone no amount of fiddling can delay the inevitable http://www.vfrdiscus...tyle_emoticons/default/+1.gif

Keep an eye on it and you will soon know if the condition is worsening or stable, a wipe off of the film until the leak gets massive would be my recommendation.
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#9 bipedal

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 05:36 PM

The last few days I have noticed a very fine film of oil on my left fork after a ride. I presume the seals leak. My question is, do I have to replace them right away with such a small leak, how soon will it get worse, etc.

Do them right away, they will eventually leak all over you brakes and increase the expense of the repair. One thing that you should allways do is to clean your fork legs all of the time, specially if there are lots of bugs around, the exoskeleton on them little bugs, glued by their guts, acts as razor blades on the edges of your fork seals. And use OEM seals and Bel-Ray fork oil. http://www.vfrdiscus...tyle_emoticons/default/wink.gif

#10 maddog

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 06:34 PM

I'm on my second consecutive VFR (Y2K now, previously a '96), and never had any problems with fork seals. Both bikes reached ~75,000 miles, with no leaking fork seals. Last year I did have the seals and bushings replaced when the fork oil was changed (high mileage preventive maintenance), but they were not leaking, nor are they now.

I am surprised by the folks who are having seal problems on 6th gen bikes, with far fewer miles than mine.

Could Honda's seal supplier be sending some less than the usual high quality seals to Honda?

Are people with seal problems doing the wheelie thing?

Are they not keeping the forks clean through regular washing?




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