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Yamaha Tech Originally the Yamaha XT600 Tech Forum, due to demand it now includes all Yamaha's technical / mechanical / repair / preparation questions.
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  #1  
Old 14 Feb 2008
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Should I replace my fork springs? - '89 XT600

I'm in the process of replacing the fork seals on my '89 XT600, which I've had for about 2 months. I've never gone through this process before, but it seems pretty straightforward. I've been planning on replacing all the fork seals, but after removing the springs I'm contemplating replacing those as well. FWIW, the fork oil was absolutely disgusting, and the forks leaked badly and compressed very easily, so they needed some attention.

I believe they are the original progressive springs, and they look to be in decent shape. However, the PDF service manual I have (which may or may not be correct) states that the minimum length of the springs should be 18.4", but mine are roughly 18.25" (+/-1/32"). One is ever so slightly longer than the other, but not dramatically different. They are shorter than the manual suggests, but long enough that they still fully extend the forks.

So, should I replace the fork springs? I'm not necessarily opposed to buying new ones, but the OEM replacement springs I found are about $40 each, which seems pretty steep to me. Are less expensive aftermarket springs available, and if so, where could I find them (in the USA)? I don't really want to put $80 into something as minor as the fork springs, but I also don't want to have an unsafe bike.

Thanks for your help.
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Old 14 Feb 2008
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If I am not mistaken Race Tech, (Corona, Calif), might have some that will work. I know Progressive suspension, (Hespiria, Calif), makes a set. Talk to either of their tech departments, they are very helpful with info. Good luck.
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Old 14 Feb 2008
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$80.00 does not seem too steep to make your bike safer and more stable. Where I live Bike parts are twice as expensive as in the states.
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Old 14 Feb 2008
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Wink Take it a step at a time

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bamaboy View Post
$80.00 does not seem too steep to make your bike safer and more stable. Where I live Bike parts are twice as expensive as in the states.
Agreed, it is not really that expensive: however, definitely get new oil in the forks and see how things improve - if you are happy with that then stop (or then go back and replace the springs).

New oil will make a lot of difference.

BTW, I would not consider the fork springs as a "minor component".
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Old 14 Feb 2008
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Spring size

As said before by Walkabout: replace all seals and oil (do a good clean before using some fresh oil, that u will throw away, to remove all the dirt!). Then test the fork.
Good thing will be if you find out from your documents your exact model: 3AJ, 1VJ, 2KF etc, we will try to help you to check what is the correct minimum spring size.
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Old 14 Feb 2008
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Thanks for all the help so far. I agree, $80 isn't much to pay for a safe bike, but I certainly wouldn't mind if I didn't need to spend that $80. I bought the bike for $700, and I don't really want to put more than $300 into it. I have to do the fork seals, install a new speedometer gear, respoke the rear wheel, replace the rear turn signals, replace all of the little rubber pieces on the plastic and skid plate, as well as replace a bunch of other little stuff (cables and stuff). I might also have to replace the clutch, and if I end up doing all that and $80 fork springs, I'll be over my $300 budget. It's all little stuff, but it adds up quick.

You're right though, it wouldn't be difficult to replace the fork springs after I get everything else done, so I'll probably wait and see how it turns out.

I believe my bike is an '89 3AJ, but my manual is for a '90 A/AC or maybe EA/EAC (?), and it's a little different than my bike. I'm not sure what all those letters mean, or if the fork springs are the same for all the models/years.

Thanks again for all the help, I love this forum.
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Old 14 Feb 2008
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springs

you can be sure that springs are one of the things that are completely different between models... this evening will try to get the right size from 3AJ serviceman.
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Old 14 Feb 2008
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Brian,
In light of what you are doing I think it would be best to put the spring back in and check the suspension sag, after its all back together. If it too much I would be inclined to add some preload which is easy and inexpensive to do. You can use metal or plastic tubes and make up some spacers.

I can't give any advice on suspension sag for you bike. I could give you and indication if you give the length of total travel. You find loads of articles on the net.

Steve
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Old 15 Feb 2008
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Spring are OK

Just checked the bible, springs on your bike model have a standard length of 18,33 inches and minimum 18,13, so u r fully inside specs.

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Old 15 Feb 2008
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Thanks for the help guys, I'm glad I can get some more use out of my existing springs.

I think I'm going to have to pick up a copy of the manual for my specific bike, I've noticed that a few of the torque specs don't work quite right on my bike, and a few other issues.

Again, thanks for the help everybody, I learn something useful every time I come here.
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