Front fork anodising wear problems

Discussion in 'CRF1000L(2) Known Issues and Fixes' started by Squily, Jul 22, 2017.

  1. This issue has been discussed in great (but lengthy) detail on the ADV forum in the suspension and problem thread. It starts before this, but starts gaining momentum at p32 onwards.

    I am mentioning this, because thus far every person whom have pulled apart the forks on their CRF1000 has either reported this problem, or are showing signs of having/developing this problem.

    Basically, the anodising wear off on the inner tube around 190-220mm from the top. This is either just above, or right at the lower pinch-bolt position.


    As the anodising wears off, stiction starts to develop. This means the shock basically gets sticky, and not as smooth. The ride becomes more harsh in the initial stroke (can feel like your tyre pressures are too high, or the suspension is bottoming). This is much more noticeable when riding slow in/over rocky/demanding surfaces.

    As wear progresses, it can cause gouges in the allu, as well as chrome tubes.

    Several suspension gurus have reported on the possible issue with the AT and are recommending people have their tubes re-anodised in a thicker or better quality anodising to prevent this from happening.

    There are also some that believe the OEM specified torque values of 25Nm are excessive compared to KTM and other manufacturers (10-12Nm seems to be the norm), and may be the root-cause of the problem. Other simply believe the anodise coating in the standard AT tubes are not thick enough.

    Apart from the damage/wear indicated in the photo above, other tell-tales are non-magnetic silver glitter/flakes in the fork oil when drained and very black oil, I.e. if you drain your fork oil and it contains this, have a look and you'll probably discover the damage as indicated. You have to clean the outer tube well with a rag to spot the damage, as any oil residue left behind in the tube will reflect light and make it almost impossible to spot.

    People have reported this wear on bikes with as little as as 3000miles, The photo above is from a bike with 27kkm.

    So far no-one has reported any positive feedback from Honda acknowledging the problem or having a successful warranty claim. But its early days yet and I will be speaking to my dealer tomorrow to lodge on official warranty claim.The more people look and report this to Honda, the quicker the issue may be dealt with and some headway made.
  2. Interrsting. Going to keep an eye out for this issue. I'm about 2500 miles in and haven't noticed anything. Going to take a look again and will give Honda US a call in regards to this. Keep us updated if you get any news.
  3. #3 Squily, Aug 1, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2017
    A bit more feedback. There has been a lot more discussion in the ADV forum, and various guys have done various things and tried various things to test some of the hypotheses regarding torquing and flex, but none appears to be conclusive. It may well be a combination of factors at the root cause.

    My local Honda dealer has my forks and have bumped it up the line to Honda Australia. Thus far, no reply from them. One other Australian (that I know of) has lodged a claim/concern on the Honda Australia website; He got a call back from Customer Care stating this is the 1st case and its unknown to them. Since then I have also logged a call on their website, but have not yet had any response.

    By report, a number of fork tubes have been replaced under warranty in US.

    I received a call from the dealer this afternoon and he indicated he has submitted a warranty claim. He recommends that anyone expecting or having problems take their bikes to the dealer and have them submit a warranty claim. All warranty claims automatically gets reported to Honda Japan, and thus Honda Japan will be made aware of any issues
  4. As one of the people that has been affected by this I will be watching to see what happens.I am lucky to have a dealer that replaced my tubes without much issue.My dealer will put in in for warranty after replacement so best of luck to a dealer that treated me with respect.I am one of the trouble makers on adv under the name junglejeff1.For the record I am one that will have my tubes hardcoated properly and run lesser tork on my lower tree.For me it is worth it as I really like this motorcycle.
    SoCalEddie, Squily and Cuchulainn like this.
  5. I was obviously a troublemaker on ADVrider too.....but I got a lifetime ban for my trouble. :D
  6. LOL - now who's wife did you insult?
  7. #7 SoCalEddie, Aug 13, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2017
    @Danceswithtrees Great update. Thanks. Honda is great with warranties and considering submitting this thread to Honda once it gets big enough so Honda can be cognizant of this issue and work on a solution on the newer Africa Twins.

    @Davy F @Squily hahahaha. Had a good laugh.
  8. More feedback:

    Honda Australia informed me today that they have inspected the worn fork tube sent to them and found no major issue. "A few microns worth of wear" but as someone else remarked - the anodising is only a few microns thick and they have basically just confirmed that it has worn off.

    Honda Australia will forward the fork on to Honda Japan for further investigation. I have responded, but at this stage it would appear teh tech guys don;t believe us riders that there is a loss in performance as a result of the wear. The dealer believes this matter will probably take a few months to sort out. I will respond if I hear something more.

    The dealer again strongly advises any person who suffers stiction or or performance deterioration to report the matter to their dealers and to lodge an official claim.
    keno351 likes this.
  9. FYI & FWIW - Got a reply in writing from Honda yesterday (1st so far)

    Dear John,

    Thank you for raising your concern with the fork tubes on your Honda CRF1000D.

    We wish to advise our Honda Motorcycle Department are in contact with the Dealerships
    (name deleted) at this time.

    We have the fork tubes and the concerns is being reported to the factory in order to have an answer in regards to the Fork performance and Warranty status.

    Once an answer is received it will be conveyed to the Dealer network.

    Please don't hesitate to email or contact 1300 559 846 should you require any further assistance.

    Once again we thank you for your correspondence.

    Kind Regards,

    keno351 and SoCalEddie like this.
  10. Thanks for the update. Keeping a close eye on this issue too.
  11. Watching! I have 5k mi on my bike and do not notice any stiction, so fingers crossed.
  12. Thanks Mitch

    I still have not had any further feedback from Honda Japan or Honda Australia on our outstanding warranty claims for the forks. (Honda Australia forwarded one of the fork legs to Honda Japan for analysis).

    As far as my fork wear goes, during the rebuild of the forks with stiffer springs as recommended by Honda, we rotated the tubed 180 degrees. I noticed the stiction returning after about 3kkm. At about 5kkm, I popped a fork seal and had to replace it, so pulled apart the fork leg for another look. IMO, the problem is now worse and it looks like striations and pitting is starting to form. I have passed the information and a photo to the dealer, who in turn passed it on to Honda Japan and Honda Australia. The saga continues.

  13. No doubt, it is a design flaw. But Japanese engineers are very reluctant to admit a mistake and recalls are obviously very expensive. As per Rick's comments I suspect at some point Honda will make a subtle design change and probably not even publicize it, because in doing so they would have to admit there was a problem. We'll see how this all plays out, but it is a shame because it clearly taints what is otherwise a superb machine.

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