I want to clean and lube my old rst suspension fork.

So far I've failed to separate the slider legs from the frame to clean/lube the inside of the legs. There is a 4mm hex bolt on the bottom of the slider leg. I tried to unscrew the bolt. The bolts turn and turn and don't come out. I had someone compress the fork by leaning on the handle bars, and tried to unscrew the bolts. Bolts didn't come off. I tried to unscrew the bolts with a 4mm bit and a respectably powerful impact wrench. Bolts didn't come out.

Batman suggested that I put a stick into the slider leg to immobilize it while unscrewing the bolts. I'll do this and edit this question to let you know the result, probably this weekend. Thank you, Batman.

Chris suggested that I hit the bolt with a wooden mallet. At first, I thought that I would do this. But this is an RST fork, and the hammer remedy is apparently for Rockshox. According to bikepedia.com, my 2004 Specialized Hardrock Sport has an RST Gila TL fork. Maybe I shouldn't hit the bolts as suggested.

  • I think you need to stick something into the legs to hold the bolt in place (shine a light in and try to find a stick or something of appropriate diameter) before unscrewing it.
    – Batman
    Oct 16, 2016 at 0:20
  • Is the question "how to remove" the spring or "how to clean" the spring? think you should clarify your title.
    – RoboKaren
    Oct 16, 2016 at 2:01
  • Each time to see this title my brain gets How to remove spider legs ...
    – andy256
    Oct 17, 2016 at 22:51

2 Answers 2


After much delay ... here's what I did. I removed the top cap and the spring that rests just below it inside of the tube at the top. Looking inside with a flashlight, there is a female hex opening at the very bottom. I got a very long socket extender -- around 18 inches. By putting a 5mm hex bit at the end of the extender, and dipping it down into the tube from the top, I was able to immobilize the bolt or nut that's inside of the tube. (A 4mm hex bit didn't fit.) Then, I was able to get the bolt that was outside of the tube to unscrew. Ditto on the other side of the suspension. And the lower legs came off.

  • Thank you for closure. You can "accept" this answer too, by clicking the check/tick box below the up/down votes on the left side.
    – Criggie
    Mar 28, 2017 at 20:04

I know that when taking Rockshox forks apart they will often say that you should partially unscrew the bolt at the bottom of the leg and then use a rubber or wooden mallet to hit the bolt. It should free up the lowers from the bottom of the internals.

Once you've done that you may get better luck removing the bolt.

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