Changing CX500 Standard fork oil
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  1. #1
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    Changing CX500 Standard fork oil

    Hi All,

    I'm planning on replacing the ATF in my forks with 20w fork oil, because my forks are ridiculously soft. I believe that on some of the later models of CX500 it's possible to replace the fork oil without removing the forks...is that true of the CX500 Standard as well? It would sure be a lot more convenient than having to remove them...

    Also, as long as I'm asking about forks, is there any compelling reason to take my forks totally apart and rebuild them? I'm not planning on buying new springs or anything like that.

    Thanks!
    '79 CX500 Standard

  2. #2
    Senior Member Kameron's Avatar
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    remove the front axle and wheel
    leave the tubes in the tree's as this will help you get the top cap off
    the lower legs of the forks have an access at the bottom to an socket head bolt (allen head)
    remove the socket cap and let the oil drain fully then reinstall bolt and tighten
    do both sides and then reinstall wheel and axle.
    Undo the top fork cap and pour in the correct amount of oil.
    Usually people will tear the forks down to clean out the oil and residue and install new seals as well, but if your seals are ok then just drain and refill
    1983 CX650E will restore

    1981 CX500 Custome Cafe Brat thingy

    1979 CX500 Deluxe (currently being Cafe'd/Brat)

    1973 CB750 K3 (need to restore)

  3. #3
    Super Moderator CXPHREAK's Avatar
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    I get better suspension on the standard forks by filling with 170 cc of oil rather than the FSM recommended 135 cc.

    This reduces the air in the fork and stiffens the forks.

    My 500C has been running this for 7 years now on the same seals. My standard for about 1 year.
    Rebuilding Handlebar Switches

    Rider 81 500C, Thingy Born a 78Z. Ozdeluxe born an 80 shadow.

    GET A MULTIMETER RTFM I am a CX500. If you maintain me I will run forever.

    http://cx500forum.com/mediawiki/index.php?title=Main_Page

    The WIKI link for all the good tech stuff. including free FSM's with addendums

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  5. #4
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    Great, thank you all! Phreak, I'll try putting in 170cc...it's basically bottoming out on every bump so I figure it can use all the stiffness it can get.

    A quick question on removing the front wheel: I've done it before, and it was a huge pain. How do you get the front wheel to stay in the air? On the centerstand, it naturally rests on the front wheel.
    '79 CX500 Standard

  6. #5
    Super Moderator CXPHREAK's Avatar
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    I put the bike on the centrestand and a jack under the motor to lift the front end.
    Rebuilding Handlebar Switches

    Rider 81 500C, Thingy Born a 78Z. Ozdeluxe born an 80 shadow.

    GET A MULTIMETER RTFM I am a CX500. If you maintain me I will run forever.

    http://cx500forum.com/mediawiki/index.php?title=Main_Page

    The WIKI link for all the good tech stuff. including free FSM's with addendums

  7. #6
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    I used a big pastic seringe...cut the needle off ofcourse....the seringe had mm on it so i was able to get the right amount of fluid in each fork. Drained my forks on bottom fork bolts...then removed the air caps on the top and filled my forks with Automatic Transmission fluid.....works great....still running strong and feels good....thats on my 83 GL 650 bobber......did the fluid change before the build
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    purplecx500 likes this.

  8. #7
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    Forgot to say......after I put my air valves back in.....I put enough air in to stiffen to my needs.......unless your forks are leaking somewhere.....the air pressure should give you your stiffness

  9. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheAtomicGoose View Post
    ..is that true of the CX500 Standard as well? It would sure be a lot more convenient than having to remove them...
    I think Your '79 CX500 Standard has no drain plugs/screws.

    At first loosen the head caps of the stanchions.

    Then the wheel, the brakes and the fender has to be removed.
    Loosen the screws on the triple tree to to get the chromed tube into your hand

    The later models -with the teflon bushes inside- have these drain screws/plugs.

  10. #9
    Junior Member joewhazou's Avatar
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    I replaced the fork oil and seals on my 1978 standard this winter, and apart from the allen head bolt on the bottom of one of the forks stripping out on me, they came apart very easily without removing the forks from the bike. Check out this tutorial on servicing the forks on a CB750. It's not completely the same process, but close enough to give you an idea about what you're in for:

    1978 CX500 Maggie May
    "You stole my heart, but I love you anyway"

  11. #10
    Senior Member dfoustou's Avatar
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    Long time ago I tried the 20W fork oil and the forks were so stiff. I end up using 5W and the recommended amount of 135cc.
    Dionysis

    79 CX500 C
    07 RSV 1000R
    08 WR250R

    IBA#58777

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