Jump to content
IGNORED

Triple Tree problem


Recommended Posts

So I finally decided to replace my steering bearings…started loosening the (fork tube) pinch bolts on the top and bottom of the triple tree…I had no problem with the top pinch bolts, and really had no issue with one of pinch bolts on the bottom (the lower of the two on each side), but the upper Allen bolts ON BOTH SIDES  are just so tight, I’ve stripped one out and fear I’ll strip the other out if wrench on it any more than I have. 
I thought maybe I could just remove the main steering nut and slide the lower triple tree out (still attached to the fork tube), but I seem to remember there is a small clip on the upper triple tree that needs to be removed before the tubes will slide out.

Any ideas? I’ve used an impact, I’ve tried a long lever (with a constant even torque), I’ve used penetrating oil….although I haven’t tried heat (concerned I might melt fork seals). 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Okay, so you have me a bit confused. You mention you have no problem with the top pinch bolts and then you talk about the upper Allen bolts that you are having trouble with. For me it's confusing.

There is a ciriclip that goes around the fork tube to prevent the tube from sliding up too far, so if you are wanting to remove the lower triple tree with tubes attached, I think that would be possible.

BTW, the torque on the pinch bolts is only 12lb if I remember correctly.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Marcarl said:

Okay, so you have me a bit confused. You mention you have no problem with the top pinch bolts and then you talk about the upper Allen bolts that you are having trouble with. For me it's confusing.

There is a ciriclip that goes around the fork tube to prevent the tube from sliding up too far, so if you are wanting to remove the lower triple tree with tubes attached, I think that would be possible.

BTW, the torque on the pinch bolts is only 12lb if I remember correctly.

Thanks for the response Carl,

there are 2 pinch bolts on the upper tree and the lower tree. I was able to loosen the 2 bolts on the upper tree. There are 2 bolts on the lower tree (a lower bolt and an upper bolt), I am having trouble with the upper bolt on the lower tree…both sides.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

24 minutes ago, Patmac6075 said:

Thanks for the response Carl,

there are 2 pinch bolts on the upper tree and the lower tree. I was able to loosen the 2 bolts on the upper tree. There are 2 bolts on the lower tree (a lower bolt and an upper bolt), I am having trouble with the upper bolt on the lower tree…both sides.

Then you should be able to loosen the upper tree and slide the whole works down and out. There will be nothing holding the tubes in place. You will have to be careful to lower them at the same rate or they will cause each other to bind. You will also have to remove the brake calipers and the fork brace that is between the forks at the fender level, and the fender as well, and oh,the front wheel. 😊

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 9/8/2022 at 8:17 PM, Patmac6075 said:

there are 2 pinch bolts on the upper tree and the lower tree. I was able to loosen the 2 bolts on the upper tree. There are 2 bolts on the lower tree (a lower bolt and an upper bolt), I am having trouble with the upper bolt on the lower tree…both sides.

Get a torx bit slightly larger than the socket hole in bolt. Grind the end of it flat so you end up with sharp corners. Grind lightly so you don't heat the end of the bit or keep cool with water. Now drive it into the end of the bolt. The now sharp corners will cut matching grooves in head and as well the tapping action of driving the bit in will help break the threads loose. Put a socket or wrench, on the bit once you have driven ti all the way in and carefully and gentle wiggle back and forth until you feel start to move. Once it starts to move continue the back and forth movement from stopping point to stopping point until it fully loosens and you can easily back the bolt all the way out.  If you have not rounded the hole out yet, try  putting the proper fitting allen bit in the bolt  and wack it a few times with a hammer like your trying to drive it deeper and than follow the back and forth motion described above. Avoid using too much force as you work it back and forth.

Edited by saddlebum
Link to comment
Share on other sites

24 minutes ago, saddlebum said:

try  putting the proper fitting allen bit in the bolt  and wack it a few times with a hammer like your trying to drive it deeper and than follow the back and forth motion described above. Avoid using too much force as you work it back and forth.

I always wack steel bolts in aluminum if they seem the least bit stuck. They’ll back right out 99% of the time. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hand impacts with a real good tight fitting impact grade, 6 point socket work best for this. Also try retighening the bolt that you have broken loose to take some pressure off if you have two bolts pinching the same location. I have also used the ol hitting the bolt side at an angle with a punch to break it loose very effective. I have even used that method very successfully on the smallest of screws. Especially when I have a steel bolt/screw threaded into aluminum. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 9/11/2022 at 12:57 PM, cowpuc said:

Hand impacts with a real good tight fitting impact grade, 6 point socket work best for this. Also try retighening the bolt that you have broken loose to take some pressure off if you have two bolts pinching the same location. I have also used the ol hitting the bolt side at an angle with a punch to break it loose very effective. I have even used that method very successfully on the smallest of screws. Especially when I have a steel bolt/screw threaded into aluminum. 

I have as well even have one with a handle cut from an old adjustable welded to the side so it wont spin in my hand when I use it to break loose bolts up to 1/2 " using a small mallet.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sorry for the absence, life gets in the way sometimes.

Cowpuc wins the prize! Hand impact won out (was also the first thing I tried). I retightened the lower of the two bolts and gave the upper bolts a couple medium tappy-taps to tighten, then changed direction to loosen and let loose with a 3lb maul. Came right undone (even on the stripped out one)!Thanks guys!

 

As a side note my bearings had some notchyness in there (I’m certain they were OE), and after pulling them out, the grease was like glue. Also, those races are fighting me every step of the way (can gain almost zero purchase, even with that little cutout they give you)…I’ve gone the destructive route and started cutting them with a dremel.

I’ll update when I have more.

thanks again

 

Pat

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 weeks later...

So, I thought I’d give you guys another update.

It seems l’ve had nothing but problems, my bike has been sitting in my wife’s parking spot in the garage since The beginning of September, I haven’t been served with divorce papers (yet).

My latest problem had been removing the races….there has been absolutely zero purchase to gain (even with the small cutout they give you)…punches, long handle screwdrivers, old tools, new tools, nothing had worked! So then I tried cutting them out….advice to anyone who reads this “DO NOT TRY TO CUT THE BEARING RACES OUT!” There is just too much metal at the top of the race.

So I went to YouTube….and found a solution…weld in a piece of metal to give yourself something to tap against, sounded simple enough. The problem is, I don’t have a welder, but I was desperate, so I went on Craigslist and found a mobile welder who’d come out for $50 for the first hour and $50 per hour. At least in his ad he seemed to have plenty of credentials…WRONG! This guy had no idea what he was doing. He ended up basically welding the race to the frame! I gave him his $50 to get rid of him and sent him on his way (I know, a few of you will say I shouldn’t have given him anything, but that’s not how I roll). I then had to cut all of his welds and mountains of slag to free the races….the good news was I finally had something to tap against, and viola! I got the race out. The good news, I don’t think I messed up the seating area at all.

So hopefully I’ll get to putting everything back together over the weekend….just in time to winterize the bike for the season.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Next time, make a cut into the race as deep as you can without too much damage to the tree. Then take a cold chisel and hammer and give that cut some direct encouragement. You shouldn't have to test it's resiliency more than twice.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

First off let me say thank you for the help and instructions….

I got it all finished and put back together. 
I had to totally destroy the roller bearing on the bottom of the triple tree, but the top bearing has stayed intact. Really surprising how difficult it is to spin that bearing. After a couple of weeks the grease inside that bearing really gummed up…it’s almost impossible to spin now.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

20 hours ago, Patmac6075 said:

First off let me say thank you for the help and instructions….

I got it all finished and put back together. 
I had to totally destroy the roller bearing on the bottom of the triple tree, but the top bearing has stayed intact. Really surprising how difficult it is to spin that bearing. After a couple of weeks the grease inside that bearing really gummed up…it’s almost impossible to spin now.

If it's difficult to spin, it needs to be replaced,,, at least in MHO.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Oh yeah! As a set, it had a significant “notch” in the center position which has been getting significantly worse.

It was testimony to the fact that 40 years is WAY too long to go before changing out and regreasing your bearings. Even though I hit every kind of snag possible, I wouldn’t hesitate to do it all over again….just happy I had a knowledgeable resource to keep me going.

Thanks again guys!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...