How to drain and replace the oil in your Fox 36 suspension fork and enjoy supple, consistent performance again.
With the Fox 36’s high price tag comes high performance and it pays to look after it. Here we show you how to do a basic Fox 36 service.
The Fox 36 uses a bath of lubricating oil in the lowers to protect its moving parts, and over a period of time, dirt and other contaminants can enter the fork, reducing the lubricity and protection of the oil.
On top of this, oil can also escape, which is normal, so you’ll need to top it up regularly.
Need to know
- Time Taken: 45-60 mins.
- Difficulty: Medium.
- Tools Required: 10mm/15mm socket wrenches, soft mallet, pick, 2mm Allen key, syringe, 20wt Gold fork fluid, tub/bucket, shop towel, suspension grease.
Charlie Collins. Charlie has been fixing bikes since 2005 — for the last couple of seasons, he has been working as a World Cup DH mechanic for the Pivot and Kona teams.
Fox 36 service step-by-step
1. Remove the fork from your bike and clamp the steerer in a bike stand. Ensure fork is thoroughly cleaned externally, notably around the seals.
2. Using 2mm Allen key, loosen grub screw and remove rebound adjuster.
3. Using 15mm socket for damping side and 10mm socket for air-spring side, undo both foot nuts three turns.
4. Using the corresponding socket for each foot nut or the proper Fox removal tool, gently tap to release inner shaft from its seat.
5. Fully unthread foot nuts, ensuring crush washers come with them. Now turn the fork upright and remove lowers over tub/bucket to catch any escaping oil.
6. Clean all fork components using shop towel to ensure dirt and oil is removed.
7. Inspect seals and fork tubes for damage or any signs of wear. Replace parts if necessary.
8. Carefully pry out foam rings using pick, avoiding any damage to lowers, seals and bushing.
The foam rings can trap dirt particles, so it’s advised to replace them if they are excessively dirty to prevent premature wear.
9. Clean using a tamping method with shop towel removing any dirt/old oil. Now leave to soak in 20wt Gold fork fluid.
10. Refit soaked foam rings into their housing. Lightly grease seals using suspension grease.
11. Carefully slide lowers on upper tubes, being careful not to pinch seals or foam rings as you insert. Don’t slide them fully on at this point.
12. With the fork slightly inverted again, insert the correct amount of fluid into the bottom of each leg using a syringe through the lower holes.
13. Slide fork lowers on completely so the inner shaft threads exit the lower holes. Refit crush washers and foot nuts onto shaft threads. Nip foot nuts tight to 5-6Nm.
14. Refit rebound adjuster and cover. Wipe down to remove any excess oil. Refit fork to bike.