HELP please, I need a mechanic who knows Guzzis

Can anyone recommend a mechanic/garage to sort out forks on my '75 850T. Just had the local guy replace one of the fork stanchions which was badly scored BUT working perfectly, I was just worried about fork seals. Picked he bike up today and I now have no fork travel, front suspension at all (and no indicators!). I live in Suffolk. I need someone who knows what they are doing to sort out. Hopefully reasonably close ie within 50 miles or so. Any thoughts please?

Many thanks David

Haywards of Cambridge used to be Guzzi dealers, they might be worth a call. Or Newcombe Brothers in Chelmsford, they also used to be Guzzi dealers and still repair and service Guzzis.

Best of luck Chris

You could try Made in Italy Motorcycles in Stowmarket.

You could try Retro Wheels near Ely. They’ve been recommended to me by a few people. You are within their collection and delivery area.

Highly recommend Carl Harrison in Harleston. Well known as an independent Ducati specialist, but very knowledgeable about Guzzis too, ancient and modern.

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many thanks folks for all the suggestions… slight pressure as needed in 3 weeks for Moto Giro Italia… what else could possibly go wrong?!

“No indicators” could well be something as simple as a nudged connector, or a disconnected earth. Can’t speak to your 850T, but on some models there’s an earth in the headlight shell, which ‘earths to the bike’ via the headlight bracketry. Or… an earth wire through the back of the headlight direct to frame. Worth a wiggle and a poke, if only to know what yours does. The man will likely have had the headlight off/apart to work on the forks.

Would you be better off find a local suspension specialist such as :-
https://www.mctsuspension.uk/ ?
Ive used one local ish to me in Stevenage a couple of times and I have to say its quite possibly the best value Ive ever got on improving a bike. I`m a very average rider but the tweaks that were made to my standard suspension produced astonishing improvements.
Likewise an auto electrician may be more effective than anyone else as far as the indicators are concerned.

Thanks Barry…

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Thanks for this really appreciated…

I hope you haven’t paid the original garage that messed things up. That is total incompetence to return a bike without any movement in the front forks.

Thanks Don, more complicated than that in that it was working when I picked it up and by the time I got it home no front suspension…

Hmmm. Seems to me that any competent mechanic ought to be able to sort out suspension issues without messing everything up. MG suspension isn’t anything particularly special or difficult (though you do need the proper parts!). I think I agree - working on the suspension might well upset other systems (like indicators), but it will probably be something trivial. I can’t easily think of any reason for your forks to lose all travel, though. I’d probably ask whoever did the work to sort that out.

Good luck,

Nick

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Thanks Nick…

Hi, it’s been almost a week since the first post, have you managed to get anything sorted so far?

As you’re in Suffolk, you could try Selwyn Motorcycles ( selwynmotorcycles@live.com ). He is based in Haverhill.
He primarily works on classic Benellis but, as they share the same forks, I’m sure he will know exactly what to do. He’s been in the business for ever and is an excellent mechanic and all round top bloke.

Quite often the uninitiated overfill the forks with oil. Hence no travel. The oil in the fork leg is purely for lubrication.

Try the following:

  1. Slacken, but do not remove the fork pinch bolts and front wheel spindle with a support under the sump (to prevent the bike from plunging to the floor).
  2. Check that the forks are straight in the yolks and that they are free on the wheel spindle.
  3. Retorque the yolk pinch bolts, but leave the front wheel slack in the forks.
  4. Try bouncing the forks (remove support from under the sump). If ok, retighten the spindle pinch bolts and recheck both the fork movement and brake caliper alignment and clearance.

Also, try draining the oil from the forks. You don’t want too much or too heavy a grade. 5w or 10w is fine. Only refill with the amount specified in the handbook.

The damper is a readily replaceable sebac sealed unit (correct me if I have this wrong). Whilst the dampers are theoretically user serviceable it is hardly worth all of the effort.

PS. Of course I missed the obvious. Did your mechanic have any reason to change or fiddle with the fork springs, seals or bushes? Failure to properly fit bushes and seals can lock up the forks and potentially score the stanchions.