Not a winter project anymore... maintenance demanded an in-season tear-down and repair. My fork seals let go on the way to get the bike inspected (the road is riddled with potholes like someone was shelling the area with mortars). I had gobs of what looked like axle grease on the fork shafts when I got to the inspection station.
Turns out the last owner lied about having done the fork seals. My service guy said the fork oil looked like crankcase sludge and was probably the original fork oil.
Let me tell you, when I got the rebuilt fork tubes installed, the difference was night and day! Where I was coming close to bottoming out, I had no issues anymore, and it rides even smoother.
I also had an issue with the brake light being on all the time. It appears that during the ride to the shop, I dislodged one of the patches on my exhaust, jarred the brake light spring loose from the pedal and did in my fork seals.
That was the last weekend in May. It wasnt until late June I had enough time to start tearing the bike down and doing the repairs. You can see what had to come off the bike just to get to the 8 bolts that hold the fork tubes to the triple clamp.
I took the fork tubes to my service guy (I do NOT have the special tools needed to rebuild the fork tubes) and he has a jig set up on his table to make it super simple. My cost was under $100 for the kit and labor to install. I also decided at that point I was going to black out the fork lowers. As a friend pointed out to me, it would complete the blacked out look. I really like how it came out.
I hope you enjoy seeing the extent and fruits of my labor. I know my limitations and I did as much as I dared in this repair. As of last night I rectified the brake spring. The bracket needed to be bent slightly and the end of the J on the spring needed to be crimped over to keep the spring on the lever, but it works flawlessly now. It looked like someone over the years had bent the pedal lever and it put the spring at a weird angle and would pop off during use.
Anyhow... here is the progression from tear down to finished product (for now). I finally found a passable H pipe to repair my crude exhaust repair and that truly is my winter project for this year.
The bike was off the road for 6 weeks. I have gotten it back on the road about 3 weeks ago and have 2500 miles on it already. The bright side about not having the Yamaha, I rediscovered my Shadow and put almost 8000 miles on her during the nearly two months I didnt have this one. I will make sure to get her into the rotation more now, but honestly, we are going into cooler weather and frankly the fairing has completely spoiled me.
I will continue to post photos as I progress to getting this bike to being mechanically sound again.