Changing the fork oil

I do my very best to tell the correct things, but of course I can give you no warranty!
If you came here from my BMW F650GS Dakar page, please be aware, that this document has been written for a Honda XL600V Transalp. Thus, things like amount of oil, oil level and type of oil are different on a Dakar. All other things are analogous.
Put the bike on the centerstand, if you have, or a chest, or some other bike stand, so that the front wheel is free. Before beginning, it´s a good idea to cut a stencil out of a piece of cardboard. It should be round, with an outer diameter of 4-5 cm and an inner diameter of 1.7 cm. Put it on the top cap when unscrewing it. Why? Well, you won´t scratch the aluminium cap with your wrench then ... Attentive readers may have noticed, when reading the known-problems-section, that I am using a mixture of one part SAE 5 and two parts SAE 15W-30 fork oil. That gives a pretty good damping to me (95 kg fully dressed). For you, it might be completely different. Honda recommends - aeh - SAE 10, I think. But for me the damping is too soft.
Also in the past, when having stock fork springs, I used a higher fork oil level (122 mm instead of 125 mm), resulting in a (for me) better progression of the suspension. Now, when having Wirth fork springs, I'm using the stock oil level of 125 mm.

B&W pictures scanned from "Reparaturanleitung Honda XL600V" by Bucheli Verlag, Zug/CH
Coloured pictures © Detlev Müller
Back to Howto´s
Back to Known Problems
Back to Deti's Transalp Page