My new fork tubes arrived today. I decided to spend the extra money and get the "hard chrome" set. They are similar to OEM quality parts. I can remember seeing bikes that had scratches running up and down the fork tubes from the seals and I think they were "show chrome" tubes. I don't want that to happen to my bike.
The tubes are made by Custom Cycle Engineering. I bought them on Amazon for $364. The online ad stated they were Custom Cycle Engineering, but also stated they were made by Dew manufacturing. I don't know if Dew bought the company after Randy Smith died or what exactly the story is.
They are made in USA and they seem to be nice quality. I haven't finished installation yet. I ran into a problem that prevented me from finishing the job tonight.
The fork slider bushing that is pressed into the lower leg just below the seal is in good condition. See how nice and gray it is on the inside. That is the part that slides against the fork tube as the suspension moves up and down. The gray is a Teflon coating to reduce friction.
This is the bushing that snaps into the groove at the bottom of the fork tube. Its job is to slide against the inside of the fork slider. The outside surface is supposed to be gray just like the top bushing. It is almost completely worn off. I bought this fork used back in 2003 as a complete assembly with a 19 inch wheel For $275.
Then I bought a new stock lower triple tree because one of the fork stops was broken off of the original lower.
Then I sold the 19" wheel/tire combo when I got my 21" Here's a picture with that old front wheel. Picture is from 2008 I think. I didn't have a garage at my old trailer house so the bike was in the porch.
The fork sliders in that picture were the next to go. I had my 21" wheel, a 2005 seal wheel bearing version. I couldn't get the 83-99 front brake and slider to cooperate with the sealed wheel bearings so I got a set of 00-03 Sportster sliders and a Drag Specialties 4 piston 00-07 style caliper.
To make a long story even longer. The only parts of that original fork that I'm actually going to use on the finished bike are the damper rods, the springs, and slider bushings. Everything else has been replaced along the way.
I'm going to call Apol's in the morning and see if they have the tube bushings in stock. We are having a family get together at Mom's house tomorrow night. Robyn could bring them to me if they are available. I don't want to install those worn out bushings. If I do it right the first time it will last a long time. If you want to have a nice bike you have to use nice parts.