Forksaver Fork Tube Protection

Forksaver Fork Tube Protection

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Forksaver protects your front fork seals from dirt, sand, mud, and other crud that’ll cause them to to fail prematurely.  If you’ve ever had to replace a bad fork seal (we have, several times), you know how much of a hassle it is, and how much it can cost for parts and for labor.

Unlike foam or neoprene fork sleeves, Forksaver doesn’t  use an open-pore material that quickly gets impregnated with mud and grit.  When that happens (and it will the moment you start riding) those sleeves turn into a cylindrical sanding blocks that’ll score your chrome tubes.  Scored tubes leads to seal failure.

Unlike open-pore foam and neoprene designs that absorb and hold water like a sponge, Forksaver doesn’t retain water.  Your sliders remain clean and dry (unless you’re crossing a creek).  When that happens, any water quickly drains out the bottom, past the O-ring.  No water retention, no rusted tubes.

Forksaver slips onto the large main fork tube and is held in place with a high-strength silicone band.  A flexible waterproof nylon sleeve covers the chrome slider, and at the far end it’s held in place by a specially designed O-ring.

Here’s what a fork looks like WITHOUT a Forksaver:

Your forks will move freely throughout their entire travel.  Even at full compression Forksaver won’t interfere with the brake rotor or rigid fork protectors you might be using to protect the tubes.

Here’s a short video showing them on the bike:  Forksaver In Action

Forksaver is hand-crafted in Italy.  Each one is carefully sewn then inspected for quality and appearance.  As with every product sold by BestRest, you can be assured it’s the best that money can buy.  We wouldn’t sell it if it wasn’t.  


This kit contains 2 Forksavers sleeves that fit upside-down forks measuring 45-48 mm (upper tube dimension).  Overall length of the sleeves is 36.5 cm.

One Forksaver sleeve has an elastic band that gathers the nylon sleeve and prevents contact with the brake rotor.  Make sure you install that sleeve on the proper fork.

To install, remove the forks, slip the sleeve onto the upper tube so the silicone band is about 3/4″ above the swollen area where the fork seal is located.  Then pull the nylon sleeve down, over the slider.  Finally, slip the O-ring down from the top and use it to secure the end nearest the axle.  Reinstall the fork, tighten everything, and check for proper clearance.


$700 For New Fork Seals?

Wanna spend $700 to replace your fork seals? Uhmmm – I don’t. I’d rather spend $50 to protect those seals so they last as long as possible.

I contacted a friend that works as a service writer at a local KTM shop and asked him to work up the costs to replace the seals on my KTM 450, and the seals on a friend’s 1290. This photo shows the actual estimate (dealer info redacted, but the costs are there for your inspection.)  If you can’t see the details, the costs are about $700 for either bike.

How long will a set of fork seals last? That depends on how and where the bike is ridden and the conditions you encounter on the trail. Seals might last a few days or they could last years. Why is that?

Seals don’t generally fail because they “wear out”, instead they fail because something damages the seal surface, which then leads to oil blowing past the seals. When your seals fail the forks turn into a giant pair of pogo sticks. No damping, just bouncing, with oil spewing on the rotors, which means no front brakes. And if one seal fails, you’re well advised to replace seals on both forks.

What damages fork seals? Dirt, grit, mud, etc. Every time your forks move, the seals swipe up and down on the chrome sliders, acting like circular windshield wipers that swipe the crud away. If you’re unlucky a grain of sand works its way inside the seal, cutting the edges. That grain opens up a path for more crud, and pretty soon the entire seal is toast. Plus those grains of sand will probably score the slider, which means a re-polish or a total replacement.

Another cause of seal failure is mud. Mud is a slurry of fine-grained minerals that act like coarse polishing compound. Over time that slurry wears down the rubber and the seals fail.

So…. what can you do to eliminate fork seal failure? The answer is simple – protect the sliders (and the seals) so mud, dirt, sand, water, and other crud never has a chance to do it’s thing.

Forksaver Fork Protectors attach to the large fork tube with a silicone sealing ring. There’s a waterproof nylon sleeve that fits over the chrome slider, and that sleeve is held at the bottom by a specially engineered O-ring. As the forks move up and down the nylon sleeve gathers and retracts like an accordion. Because the sleeve is flexible there’s no “stiction” which would affect the fork’s performance.

What this gives you is a mud-proof, sand-proof, water-proof enclosure that keeps crud off the sliders, and that keeps your seals in perfect shape. When the seals are clean and dry they’ll last for years.

Don’t confuse Forksavers with other fork protection systems, like neoprene or zip-on foam sleeves. Those designs can “pack-up” with mud, their porous foam collects grit, and they generally cause more problems than they solve.

Let’s go back to that dealer estimate. I know that shop and it’s a fair estimate, based on their shop rate and costs of doing business. Many riders do their own work and don’t want to pay dealer prices, so they tackle the job themselves. For you intrepid garage mechanics, you’ll still need special tools to remove the old seals and install the new ones. It can be done in your garage if you know what you’re doing. But you”ll still spend more on those new seals than you will on a set of Forksavers.