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How often do you rebuild your shock/fork

  • Every 6 Months

    Votes: 11 19.0%
  • Every year

    Votes: 16 27.6%
  • 'When it needs it'

    Votes: 28 48.3%
  • What is a shock/fork?

    Votes: 3 5.2%
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just curious how often riders have their suspension rebuilt. I have seen some pros say at least once a year no matter what. Then others that only do it when it needs it.

Just curious - I am in the 'when it needs it' camp.
 

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www.derbyrims.com
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Shock service can go much longer than forks because they are far better sealed from moisture in the "dry" air, dust, mud, etc.

My fork needs the oil changed every 3 months, my shock every year and a half with my trail riding down to only about 2500 miles per year now. I do delay as long as 5 months with the fork and 2 years with the shock sometimes, but the performance falls off which becomes really noticeable when they are finally serviced and the fresh oil brings action and damping back to life.

Bushing and seal replacement is more a factor of quality, but generally I need them changed every 3 years. I've usually upgraded the fork and shock by then.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
derby said:
Shock service can go much longer than forks because they are far better sealed from moisture in the "dry" air, dust, mud, etc.

My fork needs the oil changed every 3 months, my shock every year and a half with my trail riding down to only about 2500 miles per year now. I do delay as long as 5 months with the fork and 2 years with the shock sometimes, but the performance falls off which becomes really noticeable when they are finally serviced and the fresh oil brings action and damping back to life.

Bushing and seal replacement is more a factor of quality, but generally I need them changed every 3 years. I've usually upgraded the fork and shock by then.
curious - what fork and shock are you running? Do you just take it to the LBS or remove them yourself and send to someone like suspension experts, dirt labs, etc?
 

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MattSavage
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What does Fox say for Floats?? 8-12 hours depending on conditions or something absurd like that? I tell you what, I'm not spending 6 bucks every three rides on a seal kit...

I take my forks apart for isht and giggles all the time. Usually do the oil, seals, and o-rings once a year. Only replaced bushings on one fork once. I've never rebuilt a shock. Well, one, but it was busted do to user error. Technology has changed so quickly, with so many models, in the last ten years, that I usually wind up swapping them out for something new and tossing the old on Ebay.
 

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My Fox forks all run Enduro seals, and I change their oil between every one and two months. However, this is JUST the oil, as the Enduro seals last several years. I buy suspension oil from my motorcycle shop, and non-damper oil I use synthetic motor oil for, so I figure I'm spending less than $2 per service, and no more than 15 minutes.
 

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All 26.5" all the time!
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I voted "when it needs it". Fox reccomends oil changes and bushing inspections every 50 hours -- so I'd say every two to three months. Maybe slightly longer in the winter, and slightly shorter intervals between teardowns in the summer.
 

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jbsmith said:
curious - what fork and shock are you running? Do you just take it to the LBS or remove them yourself and send to someone like suspension experts, dirt labs, etc?
I should have mentioned my intervals are for coil fork and shock. Air shocks need more frequent sleeve oil maintenance, about once every 3 to 6 months to avoid drying out (or possibly longer, depending on frequency of use), about the same interval as any air or coil fork needs the oil changed. Like coil an air shock damper oil service interval can be 1.5 years more or less to maintain best performance.

I've found these intervals pretty consistent for preventative maintenance over 13 years of full suspension and another 5 years earlier on hardtail suspenion. I have gone much longer when I didn't know any better. The deterioration of performance is gradual and not very noticeable really until maintenance is done too late bringing back the new bike feel.

I have always had just one versatile trail bike at a time. During the last 3.5 years it has been an Ibis Mojo, now with a Rockshox Lyrik coil u-turn and early (2002) Fox Vanilla RC that has been custom tuned twice by PUSH Industries.

I do my own fork maintenance, except if bushing replacement requires special tools. Many years ago when I used air shocks I'd service the sleeve myself, which is easy. Most forks are easy to self service if you have the few basic tools required and follow the service manual. Shocks require expert damper oil change service, I hope to learn to do this myself to gain more knowledge and save money.

If you are moderately mechanically inclined, you would enjoy doing your own fork and shock air sleeve maintenance, especially after doing it a couple times to learn it. The fork oil maintenance can be done without removing the fork from the bike. The shock must be removed to remove the air sleeve for cleaning the old oil out and replacing with fresh. The fork can be done in about 1/2 hour without rushing, and the air shock sleeve oil change in less time.
 

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@Bad Mechanic

You are STILL changing your fluids every 2-3 months with the Enduro Seals on? Wow. I'm planning on cracking my fork open this time next year.
 

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GrantB said:
You are STILL changing your fluids every 2-3 months with the Enduro Seals on? Wow. I'm planning on cracking my fork open this time next year.
Honestly? I probably don't need to, as the oil always comes out looking pretty good. However, like I wrote earlier, it costs me about $2 and takes me about 15 minutes, so why not? Every 2-3 months is still only about 3 times a season. Foxes are high dollar and high performance forks, and I'd rather do maintenance more often than necessary, than try to stretch it.

When I ran Fox seals, after just a couple dirty rides the oil would be contaminated.
 
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