Dorado Maintenance + Rebuild

PB Forum :: Mechanics' Lounge
Dorado Maintenance + Rebuild
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Posted: Dec 14, 2007 at 8:10 Quote
I'm looking for some tips on how to keep this fork running in top shape and what is needed to do that. Any tips for running and maintaining Dorados would be appreciated.

There used to be a thread on Ridemonkey detailing all of this but it was deleted. Anyone have it saved or backed up somewhere?

Posted: Dec 14, 2007 at 8:26 Quote
well manitou does not make parts for them anymore which sucks, they have a 3 years rule.......however if your taking oil and seals no problem, bebuild them 1-2 times per season with fresh oil and seals, make sure the bushings are still good in them if your buying them, and you can get 30mm enduro seals for the 30mm ones....the bigger 32mm ones i was told by the guy who make them were tested but never reported back on, so more demand might make them try again mabey?. So, so long as the bushings are good in the fork they should last ok with fresh oil and seals 1-2 times a year as i said. i might get another one this year to

Posted: Dec 14, 2007 at 8:46 Quote
bomberdave wrote:
well manitou does not make parts for them anymore which sucks, they have a 3 years rule.......however if your taking oil and seals no problem, bebuild them 1-2 times per season with fresh oil and seals, make sure the bushings are still good in them if your buying them, and you can get 30mm enduro seals for the 30mm ones....the bigger 32mm ones i was told by the guy who make them were tested but never reported back on, so more demand might make them try again mabey?. So, so long as the bushings are good in the fork they should last ok with fresh oil and seals 1-2 times a year as i said. i might get another one this year to

Are you joking about rebuilding them 1-2 times a season? Dorados are the most labor/maintenance intensive fork ever made. I am talking about rebuilds after every 30-40 hours of riding or after a day at the race. These forks were absolutely hell to deal with but when they were kept in pristine shape, they will never let you down. I had one and I managed to get rebuilds down to about ~45 minutes after a lot of practice. I also used fresh oil (I just used stuff from the moto shop since it is cheaper and the same quality as Finishline and I was going through this stuff like I drink water) and replaced the seals when needed. It is also hard to find spare parts as the days go by. I normally have to call every shop here in Calgary to see if they have a part and occasionaly, I have to drive to a shop in Banff (an hour away) or to Cochrane which isn't around the corner either. The technology in the Dorado is passe and they are too maintenance intensive to have so I would consider buying a newer DH fork like a Boxxer, 40, or 888.

Posted: Dec 14, 2007 at 8:57 Quote
I love mine even though it may be passe. I know how it works and I like it. That said it does need to be rebuilt very very often I do mine after every 30 hours and thankfully I have a friend who has the time to do it for me. It really is amazing how fast they can drop off in performance. Parts are getting a little harder to find, if anything major goes the fork is pretty well toast and will be retired. Simple things is ust keeping it clean, and checking to fork over for anything that looks out of place.

Posted: Dec 14, 2007 at 22:32 Quote
mmmmm Dorado...nicest feeling fork I ever did own, but not my 03 or my 04...just my 05 it was a great fork. My fox40 is half the maintenece the Dorado was...but the dorado was a better race fork in my opinion.

Mod Plus
Posted: Dec 15, 2007 at 19:45 Quote
I spent a season on a Dorado and loved it. They have a rep as being pretty maintenance intensive but its not all that bad and less then work then an older Boxxer by far. The stanction acts as the damper cartridge so while they may weep a fair amount of oil its only ever lubrication oil. Damping oil still needs to be changed to keep it working consistant (just like any other fork) but not as often as just relubing things. Its pretty simple, drop out both stanctions, clean and relube using some nice thin grease or if you look after it you can use some fork oil for lube but you'll have to redo things sooner. Also, make sure you have the more up to date spring compensator in the damping leg as opposed to the the older closed-cell foam unit. The foam breaks down over time and you'll get less travel and have bits floating around.

The damping unit inside the Dorado is anything but passe, in fact I would say its still more advanced then a lot of other "high end" forks out there. TPC+ is a super well though out position sensitive system that uses proper (and proven) shim based damping. You can take it apart and valve it the way you'd like it to work as well as being able to adjust where in the forks travel the floating piston starts to do its job. The 7" TPC+ Travis is also a winner. Same inner workings as the Dorado, a bit heavier but a lot stiffer. The truth is that everything does work good but I really like the fact that they didn't try and reinvent the wheel with plastic flexy tubes for damping (and then be proud that they have finally used a shim or two for their "speed stack") or use open bath cartridges that the user can't open up and service...I mean, why can't I see whats in there???? Its because there not much in there! Manitou does not have a very good rep going on right now and thats too bad because they and Fox truly do produce the best working DH forks.
Anyways....I think I've gone off a tangent!!!

Posted: Dec 15, 2007 at 21:22 Quote
kakah wrote:
I spent a season on a Dorado and loved it. They have a rep as being pretty maintenance intensive but its not all that bad and less then work then an older Boxxer by far. The stanction acts as the damper cartridge so while they may weep a fair amount of oil its only ever lubrication oil. Damping oil still needs to be changed to keep it working consistant (just like any other fork) but not as often as just relubing things. Its pretty simple, drop out both stanctions, clean and relube using some nice thin grease or if you look after it you can use some fork oil for lube but you'll have to redo things sooner. Also, make sure you have the more up to date spring compensator in the damping leg as opposed to the the older closed-cell foam unit. The foam breaks down over time and you'll get less travel and have bits floating around.

The damping unit inside the Dorado is anything but passe, in fact I would say its still more advanced then a lot of other "high end" forks out there. TPC+ is a super well though out position sensitive system that uses proper (and proven) shim based damping. You can take it apart and valve it the way you'd like it to work as well as being able to adjust where in the forks travel the floating piston starts to do its job. The 7" TPC+ Travis is also a winner. Same inner workings as the Dorado, a bit heavier but a lot stiffer. The truth is that everything does work good but I really like the fact that they didn't try and reinvent the wheel with plastic flexy tubes for damping (and then be proud that they have finally used a shim or two for their "speed stack") or use open bath cartridges that the user can't open up and service...I mean, why can't I see whats in there???? Its because there not much in there! Manitou does not have a very good rep going on right now and thats too bad because they and Fox truly do produce the best working DH forks.
Anyways....I think I've gone off a tangent!!!


Just a side note... In the Dorado your not supposed to run Fork oil...you burn the bushings out. Other then a bit of m-prep on the springs The best lube to use is a 5w30 full synthetic motor oil...no bull.

Mod Plus
Posted: Dec 16, 2007 at 13:01 Quote
maestroforlife wrote:
kakah wrote:
I spent a season on a Dorado and loved it. They have a rep as being pretty maintenance intensive but its not all that bad and less then work then an older Boxxer by far. The stanction acts as the damper cartridge so while they may weep a fair amount of oil its only ever lubrication oil. Damping oil still needs to be changed to keep it working consistant (just like any other fork) but not as often as just relubing things. Its pretty simple, drop out both stanctions, clean and relube using some nice thin grease or if you look after it you can use some fork oil for lube but you'll have to redo things sooner. Also, make sure you have the more up to date spring compensator in the damping leg as opposed to the the older closed-cell foam unit. The foam breaks down over time and you'll get less travel and have bits floating around.

The damping unit inside the Dorado is anything but passe, in fact I would say its still more advanced then a lot of other "high end" forks out there. TPC+ is a super well though out position sensitive system that uses proper (and proven) shim based damping. You can take it apart and valve it the way you'd like it to work as well as being able to adjust where in the forks travel the floating piston starts to do its job. The 7" TPC+ Travis is also a winner. Same inner workings as the Dorado, a bit heavier but a lot stiffer. The truth is that everything does work good but I really like the fact that they didn't try and reinvent the wheel with plastic flexy tubes for damping (and then be proud that they have finally used a shim or two for their "speed stack") or use open bath cartridges that the user can't open up and service...I mean, why can't I see whats in there???? Its because there not much in there! Manitou does not have a very good rep going on right now and thats too bad because they and Fox truly do produce the best working DH forks.
Anyways....I think I've gone off a tangent!!!


Just a side note... In the Dorado your not supposed to run Fork oil...you burn the bushings out. Other then a bit of m-prep on the springs The best lube to use is a 5w30 full synthetic motor oil...no bull.


True, I remember reading that also. I never had problems with running fork oil but I wouldn't be taking any chances since any Dorado thats out there has been around for awhile now! I'm guessing it won't break down as fast but is a lot better at coating the bushings and staying where you need it.

Posted: Dec 16, 2007 at 18:23 Quote
kakah wrote:
maestroforlife wrote:
kakah wrote:
I spent a season on a Dorado and loved it. They have a rep as being pretty maintenance intensive but its not all that bad and less then work then an older Boxxer by far. The stanction acts as the damper cartridge so while they may weep a fair amount of oil its only ever lubrication oil. Damping oil still needs to be changed to keep it working consistant (just like any other fork) but not as often as just relubing things. Its pretty simple, drop out both stanctions, clean and relube using some nice thin grease or if you look after it you can use some fork oil for lube but you'll have to redo things sooner. Also, make sure you have the more up to date spring compensator in the damping leg as opposed to the the older closed-cell foam unit. The foam breaks down over time and you'll get less travel and have bits floating around.

The damping unit inside the Dorado is anything but passe, in fact I would say its still more advanced then a lot of other "high end" forks out there. TPC+ is a super well though out position sensitive system that uses proper (and proven) shim based damping. You can take it apart and valve it the way you'd like it to work as well as being able to adjust where in the forks travel the floating piston starts to do its job. The 7" TPC+ Travis is also a winner. Same inner workings as the Dorado, a bit heavier but a lot stiffer. The truth is that everything does work good but I really like the fact that they didn't try and reinvent the wheel with plastic flexy tubes for damping (and then be proud that they have finally used a shim or two for their "speed stack") or use open bath cartridges that the user can't open up and service...I mean, why can't I see whats in there???? Its because there not much in there! Manitou does not have a very good rep going on right now and thats too bad because they and Fox truly do produce the best working DH forks.
Anyways....I think I've gone off a tangent!!!


Just a side note... In the Dorado your not supposed to run Fork oil...you burn the bushings out. Other then a bit of m-prep on the springs The best lube to use is a 5w30 full synthetic motor oil...no bull.


True, I remember reading that also. I never had problems with running fork oil but I wouldn't be taking any chances since any Dorado thats out there has been around for awhile now! I'm guessing it won't break down as fast but is a lot better at coating the bushings and staying where you need it.

you would be amazed at the difference.

Posted: Feb 14, 2013 at 7:18 Quote
Just got set of 03s n need help with oil heights pls

Posted: Feb 14, 2013 at 10:25 Quote
Well, when you bleed the damper you dont exactly measure and fill like a marzo, theres a bit of a process to it.

For the outer legs I've been using 10 ml per side.

Posted: Feb 15, 2013 at 2:16 Quote
jonbikes wrote:
Well, when you bleed the damper you dont exactly measure and fill like a marzo, theres a bit of a process to it.

For the outer legs I've been using 10 ml per side.
its just the outers that need oil Smile

Posted: Feb 15, 2013 at 5:50 Quote
shiver-dc wrote:
jonbikes wrote:
Well, when you bleed the damper you dont exactly measure and fill like a marzo, theres a bit of a process to it.

For the outer legs I've been using 10 ml per side.
its just the outers that need oil Smile

NO!
In the left stanchion there are just springs so you need to pack it out with lots of grease.
the left side are all the adjustment.
And are conitained all in the stanchions.

Posted: Feb 15, 2013 at 16:16 Quote
I beleive he meant that he only needs to service the outer legs at this point in time, which is totally normal. I usually do an outer leg service after a really hard long day of riding, but go quite a lot longer between damper rebuilds.

Posted: Feb 16, 2013 at 3:00 Quote
jonbikes wrote:
I beleive he meant that he only needs to service the outer legs at this point in time, which is totally normal. I usually do an outer leg service after a really hard long day of riding, but go quite a lot longer between damper rebuilds.
which legs need oil and how much?

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