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Discussion Starter #1
Several old posts discuss installation of fork covers. However, none discusses removal of old installed covers. My problem is a leaking oil seal in the right fork leg (2003 RSW) and I have to get the fork legs out of the triple tree braces. Previous owner installed chromeplated fork covers. I need to know how to loosen the upper cover in order to be able to lower the fork legs from the upper and lower triple tree braces. Those previous posts mention that covers are installed with O-rings sliding the covers over the fork legs. If this is also the case in my situation than it would probably be easy to remove them. However, these bloody covers almost seem to be glued on the fork legs. Can't turn them around. Only the thin ring at the lower part of the upper cover moves around freely. I managed to loosen the fork leg and lower it a little bit, and turned it 180 degrees, so you can see the 'opening' in the top of the cover. That spot could be used to spray silicon or WD40 inside the cover tube, but I have not done that yet. I might be that they are mounted in a different way than with o-rings. I hope I do not need to use a dremel....
I would very much appreciate some advice on how to remove at least the upper covers so I can lower the fork legs, get them out and replace the oil seal and dust covers. I will try to add pictures. Thanks in advance.
George
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I suspect that the OO/PO or shop had difficulty holding the factory accessory thin O-rings in place, during the R&R, and used clear silicone adhesive or equivalent else there is internal corrosion between the upper fork tubes and the I.D. of the upper chrome tube from the chrome sediment from the process.
  • Be sure to loosen the 4-triple tree upper/lower M8 pinch bolts.
  • With front wheel removed attempt to twist the upper fork to shear any corrosion by using a 6 point 1/2 in. drive 1 3/16 in.(30mm) shallow socket in a CW direction, etcetera
 

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Oops ... I just now looked @ your photos and it looks like they used clear silicone. Hopefully they used it sparingly!
You should be able to grasp the lower chrome tube with a neoprene or rubber sheet and twist it to break it loose though more than likely they used the O-rings here.
Also, looks like your ride is missing the top chrome wire cable guide that goes under the top tree. This is a good thing for your current situation as you can also now twist the upper fork chrome tube with the sheet of rubber.
  • The worst scenario is you can remove the top triple tree and come from the top side to remove the upper chrome tube which isn't a big deal. Some silicone spray should help too!
    • Would suggest you remove the fuel tank to protect your investment if you go in that direction.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks. I did loosen the bolts, and used some silicon spray. Managed to push down the legs a little. The lower covers now freely move around, and bit up/downwards. the upper covers are still very tight and cannot move around the inner fork let yet. I will spray some WD40 and leave it for the night and see what happens.

While doing all this. Is it really necessary to remove both fork legs to renew the fork oil seals dust cover? In other words, can the lower part of the fork be removed from the upper part while the fork legs remain in the braces of the triple tree. In the bottom of the lower leg is a screw which apparently links the lower part to the upper part (according to the manual). However, the workshop repair manual assumes that both fork legs are dismounted in order to do the work, but there may be a short cut?

My intention was to get the forks out and bring them to the shop to let them change the seals. I had to order them from USA and just received them.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Alanh, thanks for the worst case scenario suggestion. Its a bit of work but indeed, it may work.
 

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As I stated in my #3 response, "Also, looks like your ride is missing the top chrome wire cable guide that goes under the top tree. This is a good thing for your current situation as you can also now twist the upper fork chrome tube with the sheet of rubber"
  • This link might be of interest to view the missing upper chrome wire cable guide which allows you to twist the accessory chrome cover and also shows the top tree removed:
 

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Mineral Spirits will start to eat silicone as well as the stronger lacquer thinner but that stuff is pretty strong so watch out on what that gets on.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thank you all for the advice. the upper cover sticks to the fork firmly and is not cooperating at all. To increase pressure, I used a slightly modified tool for removing oil filters to put more pressure on the sheet of rubber around the fork cover, but without success. Later today I will try, after removing the gas tank (....), to put a bit of heat to the cover with a heat-gun paint stripper. If that doesn;t work, I will remove the upper tripple tree brace and explore other ways. I may still use the dremel in the end and cut the covers away from the fork and buy new ones if they are still on sale. I will keep you informed about the result. Thanks again!
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Those Yami accessory chrome fork tube covers are no longer available so be careful! You also don't know what the upper fork tubes look like. It's possible that the black anodizing is corroded from moisture entrapment.

I would suggest coming from the topside as stated earlier and while you're at it, inspect and repack the front steering neck bearings.
I'm assuming you have the lower tree pinch bolts torqued to factory specs while using your strap wrench to loosen the chrome covers.
Also, the use of mineral spirits as suggested by Heftysmurf or alcohol can aid in loosening the silicone.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Just to avoid destroying non-replacable items. Objective is to replace the seals. If I do not succeeed in getting the covers off, I should be able to get the whole frontfork off after removing the top brace of the triple tree. After removing the headlamp and getting the wiring out of the way, the remaining part of the system comprises the two fork legs squeezed in the lower brace of the triple tree, and the steering tube,... right? Once the top brace is removed the remains can thus slide down the steering tube of the frame. I can then take the two fork legs, kept together by the lower brace of the triple tree, to the workshop and let them replace the seals. Is my reasoning correct? Do I overlook something? (I assume that I can let the handle bar mounted on the top brace of the triple tree, if not I will remove it, if necessary).

In this way I do not need to put effort in removing the fork leg covers at all. Correct?
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Did not manage to remove the upper fork covers, so I took the whole fork system out of the warrior. I leave it to the local yamaha shop tomorrow to replace fork oil and dust seals. They know the bike. I bought orignal Yamaha parts, More expensive than those of Allballsracing. Good opportunity to have a look at the condition of the steering head bearings and races. No shocking findings, except some vague imprint of the lower bearing in the lower race (in bottom frame). I wiil continue riding with them this season and replace them next year as I want to ride now the weather is good. The new bearings set will arrive in 3 weeks time.....
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