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  1. #1
    chips & bier
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    The dreaded Fox Forx bushing slop & what to do about it

    For some reason my relatively new F120 suddenly has a significant amount of play on the upper bushings, feeling like a loose headset. This has developed over the course of only a couple of rides. As I don't want to have to go through the shenanigans of sending the fork back to the 'local' distributor (who is in a neighboring country) and wait fork weeks, and this is the nth time I've had bushing/creak issues with a newer F-series fork, I'm really hoping somebody here can help me out.

    1) Any idea how much bushing slop is feature, not a bug? I've read various different responses from Fox and Fox distributors in the past.

    2) Can I do something about this myself, such as shim the bushings? I'm a competent mechanic and service everything bar the bushings because at this point I don't have a bushing installation or removal tool.

    Thanks in advance!
    eric

  2. #2
    moaaar shimz
    Reputation: tacubaya's Avatar
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    Just dump that Fox and get something else. Bushing tolerance is 0.0015 0.0090. You need an internal micrometer to measure this.

    Fox distributors and Fox itself will tell you most of the time the slop is designed to allow smooth movement, but 8/10 times it will be a manufacturing issue (out of tolerance) and they are just trying to avoid warranty.

    Rock Shox lowers are conical inside to allow bushing fit depending on how deep you push them. I think Fox doesn't use this method so you are basically SOL.

  3. #3
    chips & bier
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    Bugger. I was hoping Fox was indeed conical. I'm going to contact our distributor again. They've fixed one fork with bushing slop in the past, likely by using a pair with tighter tolerances (or at least ones on spec) I guess.

    Thanks!

    Edit: Just spoke to the distributor and they said they'll replace the bushings with the tightest tolerance ones they can find, under warranty. They're willing to send me the bushings as well (if I pay for them).

    How much work is it to remove and fit old bushings with DIY tools? I would be out of warranty, but the distributor noted they have a huge amount of work and can't guarantee a quick turnaround at this time.
    Last edited by eric; 04-23-2012 at 12:29 AM.

  4. #4
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    This will give you an idea on what's involved: DIY Fork Bushing Removal & Installation

  5. #5
    chips & bier
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    Gracias!

    For some reason I'd seen that come by at one point, but was totally unable to find it last night. I've got an F80 that at some point this years is probably going to die (it's over 8 years old) which can be converted in to a 32 mm bushing tool

    FWIW, I've shipped the fork off to the distributor as they've offered to warranty it. I sure wish the people at Fox would take note of this kind of stuff.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by tacubaya View Post
    Just dump that Fox and get something else. Bushing tolerance is 0.0015 0.0090. You need an internal micrometer to measure this.

    Fox distributors and Fox itself will tell you most of the time the slop is designed to allow smooth movement, but 8/10 times it will be a manufacturing issue (out of tolerance) and they are just trying to avoid warranty.

    Rock Shox lowers are conical inside to allow bushing fit depending on how deep you push them. I think Fox doesn't use this method so you are basically SOL.
    +1

    I had this happen on my Fox Float 140RL which came stock on my bike. The LBS sent it back to Fox (3 week turnaround), and the slop issue was fixed. Fox said they changed out the bushings. The downside was that the fork now had very poor small bump compliance. The big hits were fine and the fork absorbed then just like it always had. But after the bushing replacement going over even small bumps was almost like riding a walmart bike. No amount of lowering the air pressure would solve this. I even swapped out seals and fluid to try to fix the problem, but that didn't help either. I rode it like this for a couple months to see if the bushings would wear in and loosen up, but they never did.

    In the end I sold the fork and picked up a Sektor Coil 150mm for the same price. It's about 3/4# heavier, but sooooo buttery smooth on everything I ride.
    "Got everything you need?"

  7. #7
    SP Singletrack rocks
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    alright so I just did a bushing removal and install via some of the info on here.

    Problem the lower bushings are so sticky the fork is basically stuck. The upper bushing slid though nicely

    Its a 2011 Fox F29 RL set at 100mm and I got 17 cm from the top of the bushing to the top of lower. Was my measurement wrong? Can anyone help.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA View Post
    Problem the lower bushings are so sticky the fork is basically stuck.
    Try backing the lower bushing out a millimeter or two.

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