Repairing the Fork Seals for the Millionth Time

It hasn’t been very long since I last replaced my fork seals. Apparently the problem was more than just the fork seals. I had some pitting that I fixed last time, sanding, then filling with JB Weld, and sanding again.

While I believe those repairs worked, what I didn’t account for the last time that I took my Honda Rebel’s forks apart was that the fork bushings could be in bad shape, too. I’m not sure why I never got to changing the bushings the last few times I’d replaced the fork seals, but at least I’m getting to it now.

Draining the old fork oil from the Honda Rebel's forks.

The biggest issue I have with replacing the bushings and all is that it gets a lot more expensive than just replacing the fork seals. That, and I’m not an expert at Honda Rebel repair so I kind of fudge my way through it mostly, and then remember that stupid screw at the bottom after ten minutes of trying to get the damn things apart.

My latest ratbike fix for my leaking fork seals involved tying a bandanna around and between my forks. It looks a lot cooler than the clamped shirt sleeve I had before. In any case, it kept me from getting the fork oil all over, like it had in the past before I decided to cover the leaking fork seals. Not a permanent fix, but with new fork seals failing even three weeks after they’re installed, it was frustrating.

The fork oil leak was gradual, but I think the fork oil is practically gone at this point, because the handling had changed. I’ve got a little bit of a wobble in the front at this point, and I’m pretty sure it’s just the lack of fork oil pressure that’s doing it.

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