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  1. #1
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    Worth it to rebuild a 95' Manitou Magnum?

    Hey guys,

    I've been reading up on the elastomers, and 5wt oil that goes into these older manitous, but would it even be worth it to upgrade this fork? Or would it be a better idea to just but a new fork?

    The elastomers on suspensionforkparts.net are $53 for a complete set and $14 for the 2nd and 3rd stage. (I don't really know what 2nd and 3rd stage is). I figure though that I will be buying the full elastomer kit. Should I take apart the fork first to see exactly what elastomers I'd need.

    Is there a cheaper alternative to elastomers such as springs that'll fit where the elatomers go? What kids of springs would those be?

    Also what other parts are in the shocks that I'd need to replace? I'm thinking if it will run me over $100, I'll just buy a new rock shox recon or something cheap.

    All help and input is greatly appreciated! I searched for 95 manitou magnums but didn't have much luck... Mostly manitous from 2000 and on. Theres a wealth of knowledge on these forums. Its AWESOME!

    Thanks!
    Gordon

  2. #2
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    You can rebuild that fork and what you'll end up with is an old fork that offers very poor performance by today's standards.
    If you're just looking for a commuter or riding smooth trails, go for for it if the financial outlay is tolerable.
    However, if the bike will be ridden frequently and enthusiastically, get a newer fork.
    You mentioned a Recon and that would be a HUGE increase in performance and riding comfort.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by 11053 View Post
    You can rebuild that fork and what you'll end up with is an old fork that offers very poor performance by today's standards.
    If you're just looking for a commuter or riding smooth trails, go for for it if the financial outlay is tolerable.
    However, if the bike will be ridden frequently and enthusiastically, get a newer fork.
    You mentioned a Recon and that would be a HUGE increase in performance and riding comfort.
    Well shoot haha... just spend 35 bucks on elastomers.... ahahaha dang literally the email for the confirmation came in 4 mins after the post. I don't mind having a knock around fork for a little before I justify a nicer fork. I'll be using it for xc nothing more like AM or anything

  4. #4
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    Just have realistic expectations of performance and all will be good.
    Rolling on vintage parts can be cool especially if you know how they work and you've brought them back to life.

  5. #5
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    Yeah, on a matching vintage bike, if your expectations are basically the same, you've got a pretty awesome rig for XC stuff; the counterargument is how cheap some of the take-off Recons are; even the cheaper Suntour and X-Fusion stuff would be worth a look.

  6. #6
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    There is no oil anywhere in that fork. The 2nd and third stage elastomers are bottomout bumpers. The main elastomers (6 pieces at 1 inch long in each side) survive quite well so check on them.

    Servicing involves cleaning and regreasing. That's it. It's now a collectors item. Treat it well.

    Putting a new fork on a 1995 era bike sounds pretty silly to me.
    Owner of www.shockcraft.co.nz and NZ Manitou Agent.
    www.dougal.co.nz Suspension setup & tuning.
    SPV Devolve

  7. #7
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    All the elastomers survived, except the 2nd and 3rd stage elastomers.

    I guess the "oil" I saw in the fork was the melted 2nd and 3rd stage elastomers haha. It was like a black goo. I've got it mostly cleaned out but am just having trouble getting it 100% gone. Anyone know of a good leaning product to remove this goo?

    So after I clean this fork out I don't add oil but I should add grease? What kind of grease should I use?

    I've definitely got a realistic idea of performance... I was gonna buy a dirt cheap rigid fork from the same era but figured restoring the manitou would be better.

    Thanks guys I really appreciate it!

  8. #8
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    Hey,

    Anyone know of a good cleaning product/method to remove the old melted elastomers out of the fork tube? I was thinking of getting a wire brush but dont know if that will necessarily do the trick.

    Any help on the matter would be great!

    Thanks for your time,
    Gordon

  9. #9
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    Sorry to dig up an older thread, but it's dead on the topic I was gonna start anyway. I've got a set of 95 Magnums as well, with the same melted elastomers as the OP and realistic performance expectations as well. The main elastomers and orange 3rd stage orange elastomer seem fine, but the 2nd stage black elastomer has melted and left the same residue as above.
    I reckon I'll just purchase the 2nd stage kit and clean the rest. Any idea what's the best method to get that sticky residue of of the fork?

    The bushing race has come free from the inner fork, what would be the best method of glueing it back in place?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by cowboy don View Post
    Sorry to dig up an older thread, but it's dead on the topic I was gonna start anyway. I've got a set of 95 Magnums as well, with the same melted elastomers as the OP and realistic performance expectations as well. The main elastomers and orange 3rd stage orange elastomer seem fine, but the 2nd stage black elastomer has melted and left the same residue as above.
    I reckon I'll just purchase the 2nd stage kit and clean the rest. Any idea what's the best method to get that sticky residue of of the fork?

    The bushing race has come free from the inner fork, what would be the best method of glueing it back in place?
    The bushing races are captured. The lower ones in a groove in the bottom of each stanchion. The uppers are held down by the wiper seal and circlip above. No glue.
    Owner of www.shockcraft.co.nz and NZ Manitou Agent.
    www.dougal.co.nz Suspension setup & tuning.
    SPV Devolve

  11. #11
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    This should make sense of what I'm trying to say. The bushing races at the bottom of the inner legs are glued in at the factory. One of mine has come out and there is hardened glue left inside the fork.

    Worth it to rebuild a 95' Manitou Magnum?-20150920_190025.jpg
    Last edited by cowboy don; 09-20-2015 at 03:08 AM. Reason: grammar

  12. #12
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    Update on my rebuild that might help others in the future. Went to a polyurethane manufacturer in town and they said they could make up what I need but it's a bit costly for a one off, around $40-60, but they did say to use acetone to clean up the old melted elastomers and it worked a treat. They also recommended using an off-the-shelf silicone spray for lubrication.

    I used Loctite 660 Retaining Compound to fit the inner leg bushing race back in after cleaning up the old glue. I figure if it can hold loose bearings in a Norton Commando gearbox, it should be up to task on this.

    With the Aussie dollar as it is, getting new elastomers from suspensionforkparts.com was just not economical. I had a pair of stuffed Rock Shox Quadra's with good elastomers so I drilled them out and experimented with lengths to replace the 2nd stage elastomers that had disintegrated. The rebound wasn't working very well on one of the legs so I also cut a 10mm slice for each side to beef that up and this seems to have worked well. As I'm not expecting great suspension performance from these forks, I'm more than happy with these solutions. I will dismantle the forks after the first ride to see how everything is holding up.

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