Kawasaki Versys Forum banner

41 - 60 of 66 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
720 Posts

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
20,303 Posts
Discussion Starter · #42 ·
At the risk of hi-jacking this thread (sorry for that) I wanted to service the steering bearings (at 15,000 miles) and thought I could do that without removing the gas tank. Is that correct?
I didn't want to take a chance on smacking my tank, so - OFF with it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
244 Posts
Old thread but an update nonetheless, My fork seals have been leaking off and on for the last month and after a few attempts to clean them I finally did a thorough clean and rebuild with new seals. The Super Walmart did not have the high mileage Super Tech ATF fluid so bounced over to the new Autozone and they offered the Quaker State equivalent.

Specs: Viscosity Index 170, Viscosity at 40C 7.4 and at 100C 37.2
We're going for a spin in the morning.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
20,303 Posts
Discussion Starter · #44 ·
...We're going for a spin in the morning.
kiko - post up what your opinion is, of running ATF in your forks....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
244 Posts
I ride some rough roads everyday and am accustomed to bottoming out my forks so they needed a thorough cleaning along with new seals. Only second time the forks have been apart in 33,000 miles other than a couple of fork oil fluid changes. At low speeds on topes and potholes the ride is now firm and controlled without forks bottoming out. High speeds the forks feel plush and yet very taut to the road. Better compression damping now which is what I needed.

In the future I will be stripping the forks bare to clean and refresh annually, no more just a fluid change.

For the first time I feel like the front suspension and the R1 shock are in sync. Very happy with the results and won't be going back to motorcycle fork oil.:):thanx:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,451 Posts
I had to special order transmission fluid that was rated for use in my VW. Good transmission oil (synthetic) costs more than synthetic fork oil; which is nothing more than single weight oil with a few additives.

Don't see a logical reason to use transmission oil considering it's viscosity is unknown and you fine tune compression damping with oil viscosity. A single weight fork oil would be cheaper and more effective at the task.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
244 Posts
Here cost of the Quaker State ATF Hi Mileage to do the forks is $5.00. The cost for motorcycle fork oil for example Maxima is about $20. I don't care about the cost if the performance is better for the types of roads I ride. The cost of the ATF is a bonus.

edit: Forgot to mention it is a 120 mile RT to Guadalajara el Centro to purchase conventional fork oil, ATF is available local and now that a new AutoZone has located here, the hi mileage variety is available.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,000 Posts
ATF and fork oil is virtually the same fluid, as they are both for hydraulic system applications... I now run straight Maxima synthetic 10W which I really like.

http://www.maximausa.com/product/racing-fork-fluid/

I just realized that your average Dexron III / Mercon V ATF with a viscosity of 7.5 cSt @ 100°C is about equivalent to an SAE viscosity 10 Weight fork oil...
Maxima 10W fork oil has a viscosity of 7.72 cSt @ 100°C, and Amsoil 10W is 7.3 cSt @ 100°C.

http://www.maximausa.com/shopping/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=7&products_id=44

http://www.maximausa.com/shopping/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=7&products_id=45

http://www.amsoil.com/storefront/stm.aspx

Original Showa SS8 10W fork fluid in the Versys does look and smell like ATF, but is actually of a slightly lighter viscosity of 36.47 cSt @ 40°C, 7.24 cSt @ 100°C which ultimately explains this, Eddie:
(Feels like I might've gained a bit of compression damping...?)
You could upgrade to a synthetic ATF with a higher viscosity index for better viscosity stability in temperature variations.

Forks typically operate at about 26°C (78°F) in 21°C (70°C) ambient temperature.

Automatic Tranny Fluids (except for Redline D4 dual-use) -

Viscosity Index / Viscosity [email protected] /Viscosity [email protected]

163 38.8 7.5 = Amsoil PAO-Synthetic Multi-Vehicle ATF
173 28.18 6.11 = Valvoline MaxLife DEX/MERC ATF
171 35 7.1 = Mobil Multi-Vehicle ATF
145 29.5 5.83 = Mobil Super DEXRON-VI ATF
176 36.3 7.6 = Mobil 1 PAO-Synthetic ATF
198 34 7.5 = Redline Ester-Synthetic D4 ATF Dexron III / Mercon / API GL-4
213 32.3 7.5 = Redline Ester-Synthetic C+ ATF
............ 5.5~6.0 = Ford Mercon SP ATF
............ 8.3 = Honda CVT Fluid
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,451 Posts
A viscosity at 100C of one oil will not correspond to a viscosity at a lower tempature unless the base oil and additives are identical. Viscosity changes dramatically (orders of magnitude) with tempature changes. The amount of change depends on the additives, in particular polymers.

100C/212F is an engine or transmission operating tempature however forks operate at the ambient tempature which could be anywhere from 32F/0C to 100F/35C.

Most dealers sell synthetic fork oil for $10-12 a bottle which is cheaper than synthetic transmission fluid.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,000 Posts

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
20,303 Posts
Discussion Starter · #51 ·
...For the first time I feel like the front suspension and the R1 shock are in sync. Very happy with the results and won't be going back to motorcycle fork oil.:):thanx:
kiko - my opinion TOO!!!

:thumb: . :thumb: . :thumb:
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
20,303 Posts
Discussion Starter · #52 ·
I changed the oil in BIG RED'S forks two days ago (Walmart ATF again...!), 26,xxx miles since LAST time I changed it. Some observations:

1. the oil (ATF) that came out did NOT appear significantly dirty;

2. the "spring-compressing-tool" I made from aluminum appears to be unnecessary. This time I used ONLY that small 4" screwdriver (see pic);

3. from bike on stands to FINISHED the first fork (right one) took about 3 - 3.5 hrs, while the other (left one) took around 2 hours to all-together-and-back-on-stands, MOSTLY because the mod I made to raise my front fender means I have to install the wheel and THEN the fender, as the 'bit' of spreading necessary to install the fender 'torques' the forks enough that they do NOT align, increasing the danger of cross-threading the axle into the receiving lower fork end (I mounted the fender BEFORE installing the wheel :(!)...; and

4. I needed a 'hand' twice, for about a minute each fork, to hold the fork damping rod UP while I pushed the "fork spring stopper" in to hold the nut, so I could attach the top fork nut.

GLAD it's done...!
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,598 Posts
Please don't remind me of my to-do list:

1. Fork oil change (lower fork boots installed maybe, or at least my velcro/tie-wrap boots anyway I can do now),
2. Brake fluid change front and back,
3. Coolant change, and
4. Valve adjustment (or at least a check and measurement.)

:( My every other year to-do list, in California anyway.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
20,303 Posts
Discussion Starter · #55 ·

·
Registered
Joined
·
944 Posts
My local shop quotes 3 hours for the labor on a fork service. My experience is that it usually takes me 3-times as long to do anything, so I'll bring it in. I can't really have them put ATF in the fork though- :D -So I'll go with Invader's suggestion on the Maxima Synthetic 10W.
Invader, Did you stick to the book regarding fluid level or did you give it more air-gap?

This will be the 3rd fork service and I just turned 50k miles. On the first one at about 11k I went with Gustavo's recommendation to use 5W and increase the air-gap. That made the harshness on compression go away and I was initially pleased as the bike was a lot more pleasant to ride. The second one was at around 30k. I was trying to get a little rebound damping- Bel Ray 10W was used, but I kept the air-gap. Now there is essentially no rebound damping, but 20k on the oil and suspension performance declines gradually.

A friend who bought an '11 V a few years ago went the Race Tech route with heavier springs and the Gold Valves. He offered me his stock fork springs; would there be any advantage to using them rather than mine with 50k on them?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,000 Posts
I don't think there'd be any measurable difference with the other springs. You could compare free lengths when you change your fork oil.

I'm running stock air gap with the Maxima synthetic 10W... I do still use 20W in the left fork. It feels great at 3 turns out from maximum spring preload, and rebound damping at 1/8 turn out (counterclock) from fully seated.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,598 Posts
If rider's put their weight and/or average rider/cargo/accessories weight in comparisons, it may help to differentiate better (light people say weight doesn't make any difference, but heavier people usually think different.)

The truth is probably in between. I always like 30w fork oil in telescopic forks before, but I'm not sure about USD forks. I've tried it both ways repeatedly, and if I don't put 30w oil, the shocks are constantly making noise up and down in the city on bad roads. I'm 260 to 290 lbs, total cargo weight at least 300 lbs. Upon discussing with the mechanic who'll put it in, I'll probably go back to 30w fork oil, or at least 20w oil like Invader said.

But I love this suspension. It is 1000% better than oem telescopic forks and dual rear shocks. In the future, I'll probably just add the 30w fork oil to the front and a rear Progressive rear shock and HD spring :grinangel::grinangel:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
944 Posts
I don't think there'd be any measurable difference with the other springs. You could compare free lengths when you change your fork oil.

I'm running stock air gap with the Maxima synthetic 10W... I do still use 20W in the left fork. It feels great at 3 turns out from maximum spring preload, and rebound damping at 1/8 turn out (counterclock) from fully seated.
Alright, question here- what's the point of running heavier oil in the damping leg and lighter in the other?
 
41 - 60 of 66 Posts
Top