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OK...what exactly happens (besides leaking) when you blow a fork seal?

My question is really what if you're out on a long trip or ride...can you still ride the bike?

What EFFECT does riding a bike with blown fork seals exhibit?

Is it an EMERGENCY type thing where you are down and out until it is fixed?
 

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Blowing a seal on one side can result in increased brake pad wear and/or brake disk issues. Basically your forks perform equally on both sides when they have the same amount of fluid - when the fluid is decreased in one side and not the other the forks start performing differently (i.e. more compression/dampening on one side than the other).
 

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Mine is leaking for 3000 kilometers, at 1 side, and now a wobble starts sometimes
 

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A blown or leaking fork seal is not an emergency but it is something that you should get taken care of at the first opportunity.

By the way, studies have been done over the last 50 years suggesting that fork seals communicate with each other and rarely do they both fail at the same time however...

Should you decide to replace only one the remaining one will feel left out and ignored and have no choice other than to start leaking within 72 hours of being put back into service. The moral to this little story is:

Don't change just one fork seal!! Do both of them then forget about 'em for the next 50k miles.
 

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If you dont wipe the oil off the back of the fork leg where it runs down and its on the brake side then you risk getting fork oil on your brake pads.
 

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Its rare a seals will fail. Think how many thousands of bikes are running down the road right now and no fork seal leak.

You don't need to replace them till they go bad or you change fork oil. Maybe not even then.

If its not broke don't fix it. By the way its BS you have to change both at the same time.
 

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Yeah a home made or store bought sealmate will getcha goin mate!
 

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Visionjohnny are you going to tell me that if you had the front of your bike torn apart to change a left form seal that you wouldn't take the extra 30 minutes and do the right one too?

I've changed only one before but I no longer find joy in disassembling the bike just because I know how.
 

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i would probably change both just to have it done, but i have done this to have one start leaking too, so either way, change the leaking one, change the oil in both and go. but i changed mine at 30,000 on my xc, should have done it sooner
 

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I have only changed one a couple times. Its what a customer wanted
if it isn't broke why fix it
 

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I fully agree, if the customer only wants one changed then by all means. On a personal level I find it kind of like only checking the pressure on one tire.
 

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I have one that leaks occasionally. I pop the cap, slide a 35mm piece of film down into the seal and around the fork a few times, wipe off the residue, then ride.



It does work! I'll get both forks done at 30K.

if you have fluid coming out, you have moisture and crud going in, i would get that fixed soon. on another note, i want to see the junk that comes out!! mine was gross at 30,000 and i didnt have any leaks
 

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if you have fluid coming out, you have moisture and crud going in, i would get that fixed soon. on another note, i want to see the junk that comes out!! mine was gross at 30,000 and i didnt have any leaks
Ha! There is always fluid, moisture, and crud somewhere... right?

I have a 2hp lawn edger that's prob older than you(maybe mama too) with stuff oozin everywhere and fires up every time.
 

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Ha! There is always fluid, moisture, and crud somewhere... right?



I have a 2hp lawn edger that's prob older than you(maybe mama too) with stuff oozin everywhere and fires up every time.

carry on then and good luck!
 

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Ha! There is always fluid, moisture, and crud somewhere... right?

I have a 2hp lawn edger that's prob older than you(maybe mama too) with stuff oozin everywhere and fires up every time.
Hows that lawn edger in bumpy bends and if you have to stop in a hurry?
Does its handling really 'cut it' ?

We are talking 2 different things here, related admittedly and I dint mean lawn edgers... Fork oil and fork seals....
Fork oil is frogs-piss long before 30,000 mile
Fork seals may last much longer.
Mine get sealmated when they show smegma.
If the sealmate dont work then theyll get changed and as a pair.
Its easy to let fork oil changes go, as long as they go up n down
Theyre ok.....right?
 

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Mine get sealmated when they show smegma.
Please tell me where to purchase sealmate in Clinton, Ms. and would be delighted to see a pic of that so called smegma. I've seen lots of various types of fluids and secretions and my imagination is going crazy wondering exactly what smegma can be.
 

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I'm not touchin' the "smegma" issue but on the "sealmate" - you can Google it and find that it is merely a thin plastic piece that has a hook shape at the end. It is designed to clean gunk out of the sealing area of a motorcycle fork seal. You can make your own sealmate from a piece of 35 mm negative film. Many of us probably have a box in the basement with some of these in it from 30+ years ago :) Just cut a piece of this film negative about 6-8" long and cut a hook shape into one end. This can then be used just as easily as the sealmate but it is free.

G'day,

Vinish
 

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I have absolutely no experience in this issue. But I subscribe to a lot of magazines, and the Motion Pro fork seal gizmo got a good review someplace in the last year (I think it might have been Motorcycle Consumer News); see:

Sealmate Fork Seal Cleaner (Each) | Motion Pro

I keep reading over the years that Motion Pro makes good stuff, so that tool may be something people with problems should check out.
 

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The $5.65 is cheap enough to just get one but the $6.50 for shipping pisses me off. The object would easily ship in a flat business envelope for $0.49 (or whatever a first class "forever" stamp costs today). If I was buying $76 worth of total stuff so as to qualify for free shipping, I would include the Sealmate but just on principle against unfair shipping costs I will use 35 mm film negative if I have this problem.

G'day,

Vinish
 
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