How to Remove a Triple Tree

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The handlebars and front fork must be removed before disassembling the triple tree.
The handlebars and front fork must be removed before disassembling the triple tree. (Image: Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

A motorcycle's triple tree is the clamp-like structure that secures the front fork to its frame. It consists of a lower clamp with an integrated stem that extends through the frame's steering pivot. An upper clamp secures the stem to the steering pivot, serving also as a mounting point for the handlebars. Although, the triple tree is rarely removed entirely during routine maintenance, steering bearing replacements and adjustments require complete disassembly of the steering system. While most of the work can be performed using common hand tools, a motorcycle stand or hoist is required to support the motorcycle.

Things You'll Need

  • Socket wrench and sockets
  • Service stand
  • Allen wrench set
  • Phillips screwdriver

Unscrew the front brake caliper's mounting bolts and the front axle's lock nut from the front fork using a socket wrench. Slide the brake caliper off the front brake disc and support it temporarily from the handlebars, using a bungee cord.

Place the motorcycle on a service stand to hold it an upright position with the front wheel lifted completely off the ground. Pull the front axle out of the fork and wheel. Lower the front wheel to the ground.

Pull the clutch cable out of the clutch lever. Unscrew the bolts from the right handlebar's throttle assembly, using a Phillips screwdriver, and pull the throttle cables out of the twist grip. Unbolt the front brake master cylinder from the handlebar, using a socket wrench. Unscrew the handlebar's riser mounts from the upper triple tree, using a socket or Allen wrench. Pull the handlebar away from the triple tree.

Loosen the pinch bolts from the upper and lower triple tree clamps using a socket wrench. Pull the front fork's legs out from the bottom of the triple tree.

Unscrew the steering stem nut from the top of the upper triple clamp using a socket wrench. Pull the upper triple clamp off the frame.

Support the lower triple clamp with one hand and unscrew the steering stem's adjustment collar, using a hook spanner wrench. Pull the bearing off the top of the steering stem. Pull the lower triple clamp out from the bottom of the frame's steering pivot.

Tips & Warnings

  • Obtain to a service manual for detailed removal instructions specific to your motorcycle.

References

  • "The Professional Motorcycle Repair Program"; Professional Career Development Institute; 1995
  • "Honda CBR1000RR Service Manual"; Honda Motor Co.; 2006
  • Kawasaki ZX-6R Motorcycle Service Manual"; Kawasaki Heavy Industries; 2004
  • Kawasaki KZ750 Motorcycle Service Manual"; Kawasaki Heavy Industries; 1976
  • "Harley-Davidson Service Manual: Softail Models"; Harley-Davidson Motor Co.; 2004
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