TDM850 / 900 : Front fork


TDM850 3VD : 1991-1995
Suspension typeTelescopic fork
Front fork typeCoil spring / cartridge oil damper
Front fork travel160 mm
Inner tube outer diameter41 mm
• Free length427 mm (min 406 mm)
• Spring rate (K1)7.0 N/mm (0.7 kgf/mm)
• Spring stroke (K1)0 - 160 mm
• Optional springNo
Fork oil
• Recommended oilYamaha fork 10 WT or equivalent SAE 10W
• Quantity (each leg)395 cm3
• Level (*)151 mm
TDM850 4TX 1996-2001
Suspension typeTelescopic fork
Front fork typeCoil spring / oil damper
Front fork travel149 mm
Inner tube outer diameter43 mm
• Free length505 mm (min 500 mm)
• Spring rate (K1)6.4 N/mm (0.64 kgf/mm)
• Spring stroke (K1)0 - 149 mm
• Optional springNo
Fork oil
• Recommended oilYamaha fork 10 WT or equivalent SAE 10W
• Quantity (each leg)515 cm3
• Level (*)130 mm
TDM900 : the front fork was modified in 2004. It became softer since 2004, apparently to match the new master cylinder front brake. This concerns the length and the rate of the spring, the length of the spacer and the amount of oil in each arm. Check level carefully if you're doing the servicing by yourself.
TDM900 - 5PS2002-20032004+
Suspension typeTelescopic forkid
Front fork typeCoil spring/oil damperid
Front fork travel150 mm150 mm
Inner tube outer diameter43 mm43 mm
Inner tube bend limit0.2 mm0.2 mm
• Free length314 mm (min 308 mm)349.9 mm (min 342.9 mm)
• Installed length306 mm332.9 mm
• Spacer length150 mm125 mm
• Spring rate (K1)6.86 N/mm (0.686 kgf/mm)5.39 N/mm (0.55 kgf/mm)
• Spring rate (K2)9.32 N/mm (0.932 kgf/mm)7.84 N/mm (0.80 kgf/mm)
• Spring stroke (K1)0 - 80 mm0 - 82 mm
• Spring stroke (K2)80 - 150 mm82 - 150 mm
• Optional springNoNo
Fork oil
• Recommended oilYamaha 10 WT or
• Quantity (each leg)507 cm3545 cm3
• Level (*)133 mm127 mm
(*) Oil level is from the top of the inner tube, fully compressed, and without the fork spring.

Front fork oil change

Hints :
• Oil level matters more than quantity.
• Change the fork oil at least every 20 000 Km. I do it every 10 000km.
• Change the break-in fork oil as soon as possible (poor quality / wrong level inside legs).
• New fork oil improves braking performance.
• Clean all parts after removal : spring, rod, spacer, washers.
• Use different oil viscosity depending of your needs / weight : 12.5W, 15W or 20W.
• Full synthetic oil 5W40 (Mobil) is OK but is harder when the weather is cold.
• ATF D III G (Dextron III) oil gives excellent performance for a very low cost !

TypeQuantity (each leg)LevelQuality
TDM850 3VD 1991-1995395 cm3151 mm10W
TDM850 4TX 1996-2001515 cm3130 mm10W
TDM900 5PS 2002-2003507 cm3133 mm10W
TDM900 5PS 2004+545 cm3127 mm10W

First : raise front-end, remove brake calipers, mud guard & wheel.

(image)• Loosen upper bracket pinch bolt (1).
• Un-tight the cap bolt without removing it (un-tight the preload bolt (2) before - position 8).

(image)• Loosen lower bracket pinch bolts (3).

(image)• Remove front fork leg.
• Remove the cap bolt and the damper adjusting rod - be gentle with it, this is a fragile part.
• Remove washers, spacer, spring. Clean all internal parts.
• Drain fork oil, pump the tube and let it rest a while.

(image)• Add new oil. Pump a dozen time and let it rest a while.
• Check oil level (from the top of the inner tube, with the inner tube fully compressed, and without the spring).
• The oil level matters more than the quantity.

(image)• Install the spring with the smaller pitch (a) facing up.

(image)• Install spring seat, spacer, washer.
• Align the end of the cap bolt rod with the hole in the damper rod, then install the cap bolt rod and temporarily install the cap bolt.

• Temporarily tighten the cap bolt.
• Install front fork leg. Make sure the inner fork tube is flush with the top of the handlebar holder.
• Tighten lower bracket pinch bolts (2.8 m.DaN).
• Tighten cap bolt (2.3 m.DaN).
• Tighten upper bracket pinch bolt (2.6 m.DaN).

Front fork maintenance is now ok.
Don't forget to install the front wheel before test ride...
Don't forget either to install the calipers & to pull the brake lever several times.

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