Well, its that time again, time to get the park bike ready for the season.
I thought I’d share my preseason inspection/tune-up.
I’m using a 2015 boxxer WC on my Norco Aurum, the internals are from a 2013 WC, so no charger damper here, as the charger doesn’t really do much for me, the Mission control DH system is really easy to maintain.
Make sure to follow Rockshox service as they recommend a lowers service every 50 hours, and spring/damper every 100 hours. I admit that I do a lower service once a month, but I’m a bit ocd.
What You Will Need
WPL 20wt, 10wt, 2.5wt shock boost, Absolute Grease.
Wipe around the seals, to make sure no debris enters the lowers as you separate the stanchions from the lowers, once separated, inspect for any grooves, scaring, etc.
Carefully pry the seals out, remove foam rings, again inspect seals for tearing, wear, etc.
At this point, I’d like to recommend SKF seals, if you’re not already using them, do so, they really last, and there’s a noticeable lack of stiction and they just seal better, just ask Steve at Vorsprung.
Remove the air spring, and damper, wipe down both units check for wear. At this point get your boxxer service kit ready, and replace the “o” rings, guide rings, etc, if needed. I must add, that when I bought my forks in Dec.2015, I did a FULL service, and started using WPL fluids, since then I have not had to replace any o rings, they have shown so little wear, no loss of air pressure, that this will be year 2 on the original full service.
Clean out the lowers, and stanchions, I use Maxima, suspension clean. Inspect seals and foam rings, run your finger across the lip of the seal, there should be a sharp edge to it, if not, time for new seals. Soak the new foam rings in 20wt. shock boost as you prep for reassembly.
Clean and re-grease the air spring assembly, remember not too much grease!, too much and the grease will migrate into the negative side of the airspring, limiting its functioning. Inspect the damper side, check the base plate seal for any scoring, re-grease damper seal o’ring.
Once the lowers have been cleaned and dried, gently insert the foam rings, we want to keep as much oil at the top as possible. Using the seal install tool, push the seals down so that the flange is flush.
The new SKF seals are now without a flange, so setting depth is critical, too much and you squeeze the foam rings, not enough, and you now have a trough for dirt collection. Apply a medium coat of grease on the seals.
Install the air spring into its stanchion, being careful not to damage the piston, lock the baseplate into position with ‘c” clip, we will add 15ml of 10wt. into the air chamber after the damper gets done.
Install the damper, and add 240ml of 2.5 wt. shock boost, cycle the damper shaft SLOWLY, purging the air out, using a chopstick tap the air bubbles to pop them, now here’s a secret, push the damper shaft up to about 30%,then install the compression unit , this will cause a small vacuum in the damper, do the same for the lower, lessening the air build up in the lowers [ negative air], which in my opinion, results in a quicker acting fork. You might need to adjust your air/ damper setting . You can do the lower trick for the Charger Damper also.
Now that the damper is in, add 15ml of 10wt. to the air spring, and install the top cap, torque all top caps, foot nuts etc. to specifications. Wipe the fork down and Happy trails.
By Brand Ambassador Brian Goyeau