Rear Linkage Maintenance
December and January can be cold months to ride if you are in Utah or further north, but these cold months are a great time to do needed maintenance on your Trials machine.
After each season I completely remove, clean, inspect and grease all of the rear linkage components on my bike. I use general purpose grease on my linkage since we in Utah don’t ride in water or wet conditions much, in an area where you are in water regularly water proof grease may work better.
The simplest way I have found to work on the linkage is to remove the rear wheel,flip the bike over, balancing it on its bars and supporting the rear on the sub frame and a block or stool of some type. On the 4 stroke powered bikes, I do this maintenance in conjunction with an oil change, drain the old oil, flip the bike and do the maintenance on the linkage then right the bike, adding the new motor/trans oils as recommended. Two strokes’ don’t lose oil when flipped so you can do the linkage maintenance at any time.
Once the bike is on its back I mark, as needed, any parts that need to go back together in a specific way on the bike, I then take each component apart, clean it, inspect it and arrange as needed for reinstallation.
The older bikes have needle type bearing that need to be cleaned of the old grease and new grease applied. While cleaning the bearings inspect them for corrosion, they may need to be replaced if they are badly corroded, rusted or worn. The bearing may look okay on your initial inspection but once it is cleaned they could fall apart.
To install new grease in the bearings I use a Phillips screw driver or any other tool with a round shaft. Place the new grease in the bearing hole, use the screw driver shaft rotating it inside the bearing, forcing the bearing to spin and forcing the grease around all of the bearing surfaces.
Repeat these steps on all moving parts of the suspension, don’t forget the swing arm.
The newer bikes have replaced the bearings with wear sleeves, cleaning and greasing is easier and more important since the actions of the suspension are riding on sleeves not bearings.
Re-assemble the suspension linkage as you took it apart, torque the suspension bolts/nuts to the manufactures recommendations and right your bike. After re-installing the rear wheel you are ready to ride again. Don’t forget to inspect and grease the wheel bearing as I described in an earlier post while you have the rear wheel off.
After a ride or two recheck the torque of your suspension bolt/nuts.
Keep your feet up, Thumbs Up Trials