Bicycle Mechanics - Vintage Manitou-2 Forks Elastomer installation
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07-31-07, 08:07 PM
My Manitou-2's are bottoming out when I lean on the handlebars with my bodyweight. I can't find the original paperwork that would probably have the instructions on how to remove/replace the elastomer bumpers. I took off the aluminum plug on the top of the forks and shined a flashlight inside. It was a hollow tube and at the bottom looked like something melted. I found the original allen wrench that came with it and poked it into the goo and it felt sticky and gooey. Did my elastomers melt? I put the long allen wrench in the tubes and there is a bolt that it fits in. When I turn it, it rotates the adjuster know on the bottom of the fork legs that adjusts the stiffness or cushiness.
I found a place on the web that sells replacement bumpers. Does anyone know how to get the bumpers that are in there out (if there are any left in there)? BTW, how many of those elastomer bumpers actually go into the tubes? I have an original bag of extras that came with the forks and it contains 2 yellow (hard) and 2 blue (super soft) elastomers.
07-31-07, 09:09 PM
hmm. I was finally able to get the allen bolt out of one of the tubes. I thought that gooey stuff was some sort of silicone protectant material to cover the allen bolt because it was on top of the hex bolt - maybe from water seepage. I used the long hex wrench to scrape it off and when I finally got the hex bolt out of the tube, the gooey stuff was also under the washer. I don't know what the color code for the medium elastomer was that I had in there since I installed it in '94, but the goo color is greyish-black. I think that my original bumper actually melted. There is nothing esle under the washer when I took out the bolt.
Are there only one bumper in each leg? I'm going to clean off the goo and install the yellow ones.
If anyone has any info to add, please reply. I can't find anything on the manitou 2 forks online.
07-31-07, 09:47 PM
Can't get the bolt to screw back into the fork tube. Can't get the bolt threads into the threads at the bottom of the fork. Are there any springs at the bottom of the tubes? Is there another set of bumpers lower in the tube?
09-04-07, 10:21 AM
I have a pair of the original MAnitou's. bought them when I raced in Germany many years ago and loved them. I've had the same problem. When I went to take them apart they were melted together. When I did maintenance on them in Germany I remember there being 2 or 3 sets of bumpers in them. You had one red one that was longer, about 2.5 inches, then I had 2 shorter ones if I remember correctly. I had red ones and yellow ones in the tubes.
Where did you find the bumbers for sale on the web?
I need to buy some.
As far as screwing in the bolt. It can be a bit tricky to find the hole. HAHA
The best way I found was to position the forks straight up and down and use the old trial and error method. Good Luck
09-04-07, 10:48 AM
Hey there, rgillespie.
This is the link:
The thing is that the site has no contact info on it except for a message saying that they are upgrading their online purchasing system and will be up shortly. That was a month ago with no change. There is no Phone number on their site.
My Manitou 2 has 2 red 1.5", then a .75" elastomer in the lower tube. I found the "melted" blue bumper in the upper tube before the bole went on. I'm assume there was a bumper there, so the sequence (starting from the bottom - up) would be:
1.5" --> 1.5" --> .75" --> [insert upper tube] --> .75" (Blue was melted) --> bolt thru and tighten.
I don't know if this place sells just the .75" adjustment bumpers or the long 1.5" ones as well.
If you do get ahold of them can you let me know? I bought a RS reba to replace the M2 and the shop mech warned me about possible stress fracturing on the head tube due to the change in geometry. I ended up buying a new bike (2008 Trek Fuel EX8), but I'm not giving up on the M2. now I just have to get rid of the RS Reba Fork to pay for the new bike.
I had an idea. Tell me if this is viable in terms of structural and not performance. I was thinking about making the M2 into a rigid fork by removing the elastomers and having a machinist make an aluminum spacer with a thru hole and bolt the assembly together. I may have to get a longer bolt, but I think that would be easy. Since I've already got a new ride, I'm gonna keep my old bike around as a tool around town bike or if I have guests who want to go out riding. The bike will still look cool with the M2 installed, but it'll be rigid.
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