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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Introduction
After having my 2004 600RR for about a year now, I've noticed many of the refinements Honda made in 2005 and later model 600RRs. This is a how-to for those of you who want to put an 05-06 front end on an 03-04 600RR. With this upgrade will come inverted cartridge forks which reduce the amount of both unsprung weight and overall weight on the front end as compared to the traditional forks that came on the 03-04 Also, you will be upgrading to radial-mounted brake calipers which have decreased flex when put under extreme braking, thereby improving feel for those of you who push your bike to the limits.

Many of you will argue that the cost of this fork swap is not worth the benefits, but we all have our own reasons for doing this upgrade. Oh, and the gold inverted forks look pretty, too.

I made this write-up because I hadn't seen a true 03-04 to 05-06 fork conversion how-to and I was looking for one myself. The closest I found was a 600RR to 1000RR fork swap http://www.600rr.net/vb/showthread.php?t=68658 whish I borrowed many ideas from and used to complete my swap. Thanks go out to that rider~


Who can do this procedure?Most anyone with decent mechanical ability can do this swap. It is an entirely bolt-up procedure to your 03-04 and is not very tricky.

How long will this take?I never put a time limit on modifications to my cars/bikes. Including the stainless steel brake line install I performed at the same time, this took me about 8 hours with the help of a couple buddies. (sidenote: a 12-pack of Corona makes this job more fun, but[/COLOR]slows things down a bit).

What tools will I need?
Metric allen wrench set (mainly smaller allen keys)
Metric socket wrench set (8mm,10mm,12mm,14mm,etc)
Metric open-ended socket set
Large 22mm socket for axle nut
Torque wrench
T-40 Torx socket (star-looking socket)
Philips-head screwdriver
Hammer/mallet

What parts will I need?The 05-06 front end swaps straight onto the 03-04 neck, so no special parts are needed.

These parts from your 03-04 can be reused:
*03-04 Wheel & Rotors
*03-04 Controls (throttle, starter module, high/low beam switch, etc)
*03-04 Neck bearings, bearing races, and dust covers (internals of neck)
*03-04 Axle
*03-04 Brake Master Cylinder
*03-04 Ram Air Covers (will need to be trimmed)

These parts from the 05-06 are needed for the conversion:
*05-06 Fork tubes
*05-06 Lower triple clamp (with neck)
*05-06 Upper triple clamp
*05-06 Clip-ons (will also need a new grip for left clip-on, more on that later)
*05-06 Wheel spacers
*05-06 Brakes (calipers, pads, lines)
*05-06 Front Fender

Here's what I started with: 2004 600RR with 8,000 miles. Traditional forks, all stock minus the frame sliders and tires. Plenty fast, but lots of room for improvement.



A friend of mine wrecked his 2006 600RR about a year ago and he was able to keep the forks. His front end was complete minus the upper triple clamp, so once I bought that I was ready to roll.

This conversion requires you to perform a number of operations that have been done before, so to keep things simple I'll just link you to the other "how-to" write-ups here on 600RR.net. Let's start.

Directions
Begin by raising your bike up in the front to gain more room and better access to the front end. I used a set of floor jacks on top of bricks, all placed underneath my frame sliders. This obviously won't work for those of you with shorty sliders or those with none at all, so you'll need to lift up the front another way. Make sure that you put the jacks on stable ground and that you use the inner-most part of your frame sliders (they may bend or break under the weight). Avoid lifting your bike up with a jack under the oil pan. IT IS NOT VERY STABLE AND MAY DAMAGE THE PAN IN THE PROCESS. Oh, and I began by using my rear stand in the back, but I dropped the rear back down because I found it unnecessary.



Next, remove your front fairing by unbolting the two 12mm bolts and unplugging the headlight/gauge cluster harness. Follow this write-up for the specifics of this if you have never done it--->http://www.600rr.net/vb/showthread.php?t=48818


Now, your 03-04 600RR will look something like this:

Note: I did not remove my mid-fairings. It's not necessary, but will give you more room if you decide to do it.

Next, remove the front wheel from your 03-04 front end. You will need your metric allen wrench (8mm?) for the pinch bolts and the 22mm socket for the axle. Follow this how-to to remove your front wheel if you've never done so--->http://www.600rr.net/vb/showthread.php?t=78102

Next, move on to the upper triple clamp on your 03-04. Use the 22mm socket and carefully loosen the main nut on the upper triple clamp.


Carefully remove the top nut and slide the upper triple clamp off of the fork tubes. You will then need to loosen the 12mm bolts that hold the clip-ons on the forks. With these loose, slide those bad boys off of the fork tubes. You will be reusing the controls, but not the clip-ons. The brake master cylinder comes off by loosening the bolt on it's perch. There is a small electric component underneath it (for the brake sensor) that needs can be removed with a philips head screwdriver. Loosen the two philips-head screws that attach the throttle assembly to the right clip-on and slide the whole assembly and group off the clip-on. To get the controls off of the left clip-on you will need to either peel (not easily done) or cut the grip off. Once that is done, loosen and slide the high/low beam switches off the clip-on. All of the controls can be reused, so DO NOT CUT ANY WIRES.

Next, you will remove the ignition module from the upper triple clamp. You can do this on the bike to have a solid hold on it, but it's up to you. Use a T-40 Torx socket (can be purchased at Autozone or Pep Boys, etc) to CAREFULLY loosen and remove the bolts holding the ignition on. Disconnect this from the harness and set aside for later.

Next, with the upper triple clamp off and the area open, you will need to loosen the lock-rings to allow the neck and forks to slide out of the head. As quoted in another thread, "Looking at the top of the headstock you will notice two lockrings. The upper lockring has a crimp over washer that locks it in place. Take your small regular screwdriver and bend the “ears” of the washer down flat. If you have a lockring wrench then by all means use it, but I just used a large regular screwdriver and a hammer to tap the lockring counterclockwise. Once it is removed you can use the same screwdriver and hammer technique to loosen the larger lower lockring. You will notice as you loosen it that the forks begin to drop out of the headstock. Support the forks with your hand as you spin off the lockring. You can then drop the forks out of the headstock (the lower bearings should fall out with it)."

Be very careful when you are removing the lock-rings. Once they begin to loosen, have a friend help you support the forks and then slide the neck out of the head once the lock-rings are off of the neck.

REMEMBER THE ORDER THE BEARINGS/RACES/DUST SHIELDS CAME OFF OF THE NECK. Your 05-06 neck is the same size and will use the same nuts and bearings, so take the time to keep them in good shape. Regrease the bearings if they need it. Now you are ready to put your 05-06 forks and lower triple clamp assembly into the head of the 03-04 frame. Score!

This step took me longer than anything else because we had to remove the 05-06 assembly after discovering some play when we installed it. As it turned out, we forgot one of the retaining nuts on the neck when we installed it. Once we figured this out and put it all back together, all the play was gone and things were nice and tight. Here is what it looked like:




Once the new fork assembly is on, the rest is pretty simple. Perform all of the steps I listed above in reverse order. The brake master cylinder can be reused, but you will need to bleed your old system and attach the MC to 05-06 brake lines. Use this link for a guide to bleeding your brakes--->http://www.600rr.net/vb/showthread.php?t=87202.

There are a few small tips and hints that I noticed along the way that I did not write in yet, but I will add to this thread later this week. For now, I'm glad to have had this site as a resource and am now making a contribution to the site so others can benefit like I have.

Here are pictures of the final product:

Notice the Galfer SS brake lines I installed when switching the MC from my 03-04 lines :icon_lol:






-Billy the Kid
 

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Quiks
Awesome write up man thanks a bunch man
 

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Dude, you are awesome... I have been looking for info on doing this same mod for next winter...and here is everything I need to know...thanks alot man, your really helping me out with this one...

Got any parts for sale I could use? Also, if you need any carbon fiber pieces for your bike, and I mean anything, I know this guy that can/will make them for you...
 

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do you know if the 03 brake lines will fit on this swap. I already have steel braided lines on my 03 and would like to reuse them if possible. And also If I have a gpr stabilizer will it still bolt up or do you have to get the same year stabilizer as the forks?

Thanks
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
do you know if the 03 brake lines will fit on this swap. I already have steel braided lines on my 03 and would like to reuse them if possible. And also If I have a gpr stabilizer will it still bolt up or do you have to get the same year stabilizer as the forks?

Thanks
I believe the brake lines from the 03-04 are different lengths from the 05-06. I switched to SS lines and before I bought them I checked the part #'s between the years. If you get a chance, measure the 03-04 SS lines and then compare them to a set of 05-06...they might work.

The GPR stabilizer will work but you will need a different mount kit for it to work on the 05-06 triple clamp/forks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I have a simialr question, I have a 2004 I want to convert over and Ihave the Scotts Steering Stabilizer...I will need a new mount kit as well?
I'm almost positive you will. If the company that made your damper offers a different kit for 03-04 than 05-06, you will need to change to the 05-06 when you swap out your front end.
 

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thank you so much for taking the time to do a write up on this. I have been gathering parts to do the front end swap for my 03. I feel way more comfortable about being able to do it now that i have read your write up.

when you have some time Give me some feedback on the differece you feel from the previous set up. My main reason for doing this is to be able to brake later in corner entry. Give me an idea of how different the front feels on the track from your expirence with the previous set up.

thanks agian.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
thank you so much for taking the time to do a write up on this. I have been gathering parts to do the front end swap for my 03. I feel way more comfortable about being able to do it now that i have read your write up.

when you have some time Give me some feedback on the differece you feel from the previous set up. My main reason for doing this is to be able to brake later in corner entry. Give me an idea of how different the front feels on the track from your expirence with the previous set up.

thanks agian.
No problem, glad you found this usefull. I ran the new setup at Willow Springs a couple weeks ago and everything felt very solid. The radial brakes felt good and gave me lots of confidence late-braking into turns off of the straights. I'm using stock brake pads in the front but looking to get Galfer HH pads like my old brakes had. I'm still playing with the suspension settings and dealing with a rebound problem in the rear, but the front end felt very smooth and less affected by imperfections in the road than the 03/04 forks did.

PM me or leave a comment in here if you have any questions.

Again, thanks to the other riders who posted information I used to put this how-to together.
 

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Is it confirmed lines on 03-04 can not be used for 05-06?
 

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Brake lines from 03-04 can NOT be used...
Typo on my part...my bad. I meant Goodridge steel lines. I found out they do. 03-07 :wave:
 
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