Fettling Guide - All smooth on the Preston front - Bike Magic

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Fettling Guide – All smooth on the Preston front

After about 6 months riding our Preston test rig it developed a knocking movement in the linkage front end that seemed either to be coming from the shock or the cunning looking ball bearing thing.

Don’t do it like this at home

Designer Jon Whyte assured us it was unlikely to be the spherical bearing (They come from Quad bikes apparently) and said the fault is with the aluminium bushing spacers that sit either side of the shock. He sent us a new ‘O-ring’ enhanced set of spacers, a nice exploded diagram and some instructions, and told us to re-grease the bearing for good measure anyway.

The resulting fix is here in our photo love story walkthrough Preston fettling guide.

NB: Before you start, make sure you’re working in a clean area where you won’t be disturbed and any dropped bits can be easily seen. Do it in the garden like we did and crucial bits are bound to roll off into the undergrowth.

1) Unbolt the vertical fixing bolt for the front bearing. It should unscrew freely, but a light tap may help.


2) Gently slide the leg assembly forwards, the rubber bearing seals will pop up but should stay in place.


3) Pop out the rubber bearing seals, and clean out all the old grease.


4) Regrease, packing in as much as possible.


5) Grease the ball all round by rotating it in it’s housing.


6) Replace the rubber grommets covering the inside surfaces with fresh grease.


7) Gently slide the leg assembly back onto the bearing. An extra pair of hands to help compress the rubber bits is very helpful here.


8) Re-insert the bolt and tighten down snugly.


9) Realise that the front end is running absolutely fine and that the knocking is definitely coming from the Fox bushes. Unbolt the shock, drift out the old spacers and hey Presto(n) you’re back to the same smooth floating performance that you know and love.

For any queries or spare bushing spacers, contact ATB Sales through their website or by phone on 01424 753566


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