Although the majority of the work can be accomplished using a selection of sockets and wrenches, maintaining your motorcycle on your own will eventually call for a few specialised tools. A fork seal driver is one such item, which is used to seat a new oil seal into the fork assembly while working around the fork's tube. Fork seal drivers can be ordered from your local dealership, but are quite expensive. Luckily, you can fashion your own seal driver for less than £3 with a quick visit to any home improvement centre.
Measure the diameter of your motorcycle's fork tubes, the thinner tube that extends out from the larger fork slider, using a ruler or vernier caliper. Select a length of PVC tubing with an inner diameter -- the size of the tube's opening -- that is just slightly larger than the fork tube.
Cut the PVC tubing to create a section that is just a few inches longer than the fork tube, using a hand saw. Sand the cut end of the tube with sandpaper to remove any jagged edges that can damage the new fork seal and the fork tubes.
Slide the new fork seal down the fork tube. Press the seal into the top of the fork slider by hand. Slide your homemade seal driver down the fork tube until it rests on top of the new fork seal. Drive the seal into place with your driver and a rubber mallet. Pull your seal driver off of the fork tube when you are done.
Be sure that your fork seal driver extends above the top of the fork tube by at least 2 - 3 inches to avoid damaging the fork.
Tips and warnings
- Be sure that your fork seal driver extends above the top of the fork tube by at least 2 - 3 inches to avoid damaging the fork.