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A question about gators...

Old 02-15-19, 06:17 PM
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Binky
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A question about gators...


Back when I used to ride motorcycles, on and off road, I was always assiduous about making sure that my gators were in good condition. Not too concerned about keeping the lube in, because the Ceriani & Marzocchi forks didn't dare leak, but more concerned with keeping the polished shafts clean so that road dirt would not compromise the top seals.

I now have a couple of off-road (trail) bicycles with 30mm Sakae forks and I'm wondering why they did not come from the factory with gators fitted. Looking at pictures of bikes on this forum, I see that even the better bikes do not come with gators, and nobody appears to be retro-fitting them.

Are they a good idea or a bad idea for off-road bikes ??

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Old 02-16-19, 08:36 AM
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Not a problem worth worrying about anymore. Suntour forks (you are correct that they are Sakae Ringyo, but the company is colloquially referred to as 'Suntour' now, even if that's not quite accurate) of that level tend to be rather simple affairs; the damper is likely a sealed cartridge, so there is nothing to prevent leakage there, and any bath oil that is [miraculously] in the fork can be counted in the single mLs. In fact, the stanchions where probably swiped with grease when new, as there are no provisions to hold anything in the fork from leaking out the bottom. As an entry-level coil fork, there is essentially nothing to be damaged, either from lack of lubrication or abuse (there aren't even foam rings under the stanchion seals).

As far as fork boots (as they would be referred to for bicycles), they have fallen out of vogue for a couple of reasons:
1) Seal design on forks has drastically improved (better forks have double sided seals, and can go 50 hours before the lowers need to be pulled for service)
2) They realized that the boots caught a ton of dirt/dust, and held it right over the seals.

There may be cases where boots could solve some issues, but the overwhelming majority of users are served by not having them. The kinds of cases where they would excel (thick mud, for instance) are also next to impossible to ride a pedal bike in.
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Old 02-16-19, 09:40 AM
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Thanks !!!

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Old 02-18-19, 03:14 PM
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put some on my bike, then everyone told me about why I didn't them & actually shouldn't use them. tried them on a ride then discovered some small grains inside the covers which got in thru tiny openings. so off they came! oh well, at least they weren't expensive
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