I should know better to ask (Commando fork improvment conten

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It's not like I haven't done my homework. Honest. But between the Landsdowne kit, our our Greg (Norbsa)'s bits, CNW, Clubman, et al., my head is spinning on the best way to improve fork action (absent the Cosentino kit, which is simply beyond my means folks....)

I do realize there are plenty of threads already on related topics, but times change and threads don't always keep up!

My hope is that this thread can answer some of those questions - I'm sure there will be differences of opinion!! :twisted: - but perhaps the latest and greatest will out?
 

DogT

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I have to admit I am very confused about it too and I also have trouble justifying a huge expenditure. Until I understand, I am just going with the original setup. It is not that hard to get the front forks apart.

Dave
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I've bought the Lansdowne damper system and I am happy with it. There is a definate improvement to the fork action, in my case, much smoother and no more crashing in and out of bumps/pot holes, and also you can adjust compression and rebound to your own preference. The way I have adjusted mine, not only are they more compliant, but I have less dive on braking which makes braking more responsive i.e. I can squeal the front tyre with a lot less lever effort. It seems to me to be good value for money, but obviously that just depends what your budget is and what you're looking for.
I cannot compare it with the other suggestions except the standard Norton which is harsh by todays standards, and it is a noticable improvement.
 
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Not to confuse anyone further but,
Do not forget about the Fork damper improvement kit at RockPoint Cycle. I was topping out before this upgrade. Economical and functional. Straight forward instructions. Give him a call, he will answer your question LIVE over the phone. Nice guy.

Here is the link,

http://www.rockypointcycle.com/Merchant ... y_Code=N11

all on one line.
 
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pvisseriii said:
Not to confuse anyone further but,
Do not forget about the Fork damper improvement kit at RockPoint Cycle. I was topping out before this upgrade. Economical and functional. Straight forward instructions. Give him a call, he will answer your question LIVE over the phone. Nice guy.

Here is the link,

http://www.rockypointcycle.com/Merchant ... y_Code=N11

all on one line.

Is that just the Covenant kit? Two dowels and a drill bit sort of thing for $30?
 
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Swooshdave wrote, "Is that just the Covenant kit? Two dowels and a drill bit sort of thing for $30?"

Yes,I guess so. I didn't know they were one in the same.
 

Tim

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mike996 said:
Not claiming there aren't better or higher tech mods but I did the Fauth fork mod and frankly it's excellent. I purchased new damper tubes/caps from Clubman rather than modifying the existing tubes but the change was just amazing: http://decentcycles.com/howto/sub/forkmod.html

Mike
That is exactly the same mod as done on my bike. Today, I took it for the first good ride (60 or so miles of twisty hills) and the results are very good. No more topping out, very comfortable in turns, economical and not difficult to do. It isn't as good as the new BMW, but much better than stock. I'm going to do the same mods to my new project bike.
Tim
 
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I certainly incline towards the Fauth modification, both on its perceived merits as I understand them and because it is offered by our own Norbsa. Just trying for once to depart from my usual ready-fire-aim approach to modifications...!
 
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It's the old adage. Speed costs money, how fast do you want to go? The minimal would be to eliminate the upstop slamming of the bushings with the $30 Covenant kit or Clubman damper bodies for $100. Next step, Greg will improve the original design with some more expense to do the same plus additional travel. Progressive springs can be added to the mix.
I'm going to try my luck with the Lansdowne kit plus a fork brace. Nobody's going to diss the Cosentino setup, but is it required for you needs?
One thing I was thinking while dissembling my forks. The lower bushing rides inside the lower legs, and we all know the quality of the British aluminum back in the day. How long before we'll have to sleeve the lower legs?

Don


"everybody wants to go to heaven, nobody wants to die"
 
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pvisseriii said:
MexicoMike wrote, "Is that just the Covenant kit? Two dowels and a drill bit sort of thing for $30?"

Yes,I guess so. I didn't know they were one in the same.
I owe a lot to the Covenant Kit...It started off the need for something that worked! I have one of these "Conversions" hanging on the workshop wall...I wish i had thought of it first.......10 cents of dowl and a 50cents drill for $30! instead of a year's work and over 200 machine ops! and no they dont stop the "topping out" they give a little bottom cushin..."topping out" is the under side of the piston valve head hitting the damper cap...all Norton forks after 1953 use this as a extension limit..the LANSDOWNE kit is not designed to "Just" prevent this.. The Lansdowne deals with the real issue's.....arresting the excessive travel in a controlable manner...Commandos disc brake connected to the original 1953 damper set-up..? well it doe's not take much to work that one out....But if you lads want a anti- topping out kit for $12....fill your forks with sae 40 engine oil....Topping instantly goe's , well allmost,,..but boy will your wrist's know it!.. all the best Lansdowne Eng
 
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swooshdave said:
pvisseriii said:
Not to confuse anyone further but,
Do not forget about the Fork damper improvement kit at RockPoint Cycle. I was topping out before this upgrade. Economical and functional. Straight forward instructions. Give him a call, he will answer your question LIVE over the phone. Nice guy.

Here is the link,

http://www.rockypointcycle.com/Merchant ... y_Code=N11

all on one line.

Is that just the Covenant kit? Two dowels and a drill bit sort of thing for $30?
save your Money!...I will do you a couple of dowls for $10...
 
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"MexicoMike wrote, "Is that just the Covenant kit? Two dowels and a drill bit sort of thing for $30?"

No I didn't (write that)! :)
 

L.A.B.

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The Covenant kit normally includes two sleeves (or at least the RGM kit does?) which fit below the fork top bushes.

I should know better to ask (Commando fork improvment conten
 
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As John Robert from Lansdowne says, it was trying to use the Covenant kit and the results of trying that got us all on looking at something that would really work.
The Covenant kit is what a machinist might call a line on line kit. The dampener rods with the valves at their end are being used as a fork slider stops at right about 1 ½ inches from total possible travel so putting in a bushing also limiting the total travel to that same distance does not seem to do enough to improve the dampening in both directions to get the fix we were all looking for. For about 30.00 it made it just a little better and got us looking and thinking and talking back and fourth.
There are many ways to tweak how the stock system works changing oils, changing springs, moving oil flow holes, and putting preload spacers in or out. But the goal for our group of people was complacency meaning a smooth ride that has the fork sliders moving as ripples on the road are encountered. Also no banging at ether end of the travel meaning hydraulic stops at each end of the travel. We did not want to come home from a ride with sore wrists and listening to the clunks that the stock system produced.
So the seals had to operate holding oil in but not grabbing the fork tubes too tight. No matter what other solutions were used a good set of seals (not the stock ones) were needed. Leak Proof brand seals work well. They work because they are not a tight fit in the sliders and they are thinner and able to use the space provided to ride along with the leg for a moment before doing their work. So as the sliders change direction there is just enough movement started in that direction before the seal has to slide on the legs surface this is a friction breaking design. It makes these seals also last much longer we have one pair in service that has gone around 16 seasons. They are still holding oil in and not sticking the action. No I don’t own their stock or get anything but the good product when I pay just like you.
Now many years ago when the WWW was very new, a man from Australia was talking to a man in Arkansas he was informed that the valves were being used as stops the man in Arkansas was our own “Hobot”. He acted on this advice and had done some changing and was pleased with the results. I worked with four Norton Commando owners here in Michigan to check it out and we all got our front end kits installed and were happy with the results. So I put the word out and built a kit now known as the Fauth kit. It has its faults but woks to achieve our goals and it does so very cheaply. You see it just works out that if you do you own work follow the directions and use the total travel of the forks you can have the hydraulic bump stops working nothing getting banged on and a ride that will have you looking for bumps in the road. The faults are that you now have to deal with more travel of the sliders and this does seem to bother some people. So now if your inseam is less that 30 inches and your weight is less than 180 us pounds some adjustments may be needed and you must do the work yourself and tune it to your needs as encouraged in the directions. But the parts to get you started down this path are under 100.00 US dollars so you might expect that your own input will be needed.
The newer kits are much more plug and play with only a tweak to the adjustments needed and they preserve the 4 ½ inches of slider travel replacing all the guts inside the forks of course they are going to cost more and they are better for it.
If you can think for yourself and be responsible for your own actions you can make the Norton forks much better than they came. The do it yourself type kits that I build for people are aimed at those who are not afraid of playing on their own to tune their system to the need. I have had the privilege of working with people like Jean on this board for hours on end to help get the thinking straight and the kit working on the earlier forks. I have also had lots of fun trading ideas with people like Kelly Cork and other great thinkers that love Norton’s and are not afraid of changing things that need work. Having an open mind comes from confidence there are people out there who ride their machines 10,000 miles a season and they use my kits. Of the 200 or so kits out there no one has ever called or wrote back to me to say hey this isn’t working I had to go back to the old way. I have been doing this a long time since 1999 or so. You just need to decide for yourself what group you fall into as an owner operator. All of this stuff is fully reversible back to stock with only your time as a cost. You could start with just a set of seals and some new Dampener tube caps and have your stock system working much better. You can then try a kit and or make your own if you have a lathe and tweak it some more or you can let someone else doing the thinking and work and pull out your money gun.
 
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