Bent forks

Question:
I laid down my 1982 P-1 at low (less than 10 mph) speed on a turn. I've been told the tree and forks need to be changed out.  How can I measure alignment or verify this before I spend the dollars? Thanks Tom.


The first thing to inspect for is there any damage to the front fender/wheel/forks? Did the front end impact anything solid while sliding? If these answers are no, you don't need any front end repair. Are the handlebars crooked/is the front wheel centered while riding? The handlebars bend real easy when picked up in a hurry, but they can be straightened. Unless there is substantial damage, your forks can be straightened if they're bent. By riding the unit you can usually tell if there is something wrong with the front end. If the forks are twisted slightly and not bent you can usually realign them by loosening up the triple clamp bolts and tapping the front wheel against a wall or curb lightly to center the steering. If this method doesn't work usually the fork tubes are bent. As far as checking the forks, the only real way to do it is with "V" blocks and a dial indicator (disassembly required). If the fork tubes are bent more than .040" it's a good bet that the lower triple clamp is bent also. There are several frame repair shops that can check your parts for you if needed. I can put you in touch with them if you want.