Rockshox air spring maintenance essentials

Rockshox air spring

The Rockshox air spring (dual or solo air) is great. It's simple, lightweight and easy to maintain.

It uses ordinary o-rings throughout. This is good and bad. The downside is that o-rings may not last as long as more complicated quad seals. The upside is that o-rings are (relatively) cheap and readily available.

What tools and consumables do I need?

To overhaul your air spring, you need the following:

  • 5mm allen key;
  • 10mm deep socket for SIDs and 2012+ Rebas or a 10mm open ended spanner for older Rebas and Revalations;
  • circlip spanner (inside type);
  • good quality silicon based suspension grease;
  • synthetic motor oil for splash lube in lowers;
  • replacement o-rings.

What o-rings do I need?

O-rings for Rockshox air spring

The essential o-rings are:

  • M3x10mm o-ring;
  • M3.5x12mm o-ring; and
  • M3.5x21mm o-ring.

What do I do?

If you don't already have it, head over to SRAM and download the relevant service manual for your fork. The SRAM manuals are good and set everything out in a clear and easy to follow way.

Here's the summary process I follow if I'm just replacing the air spring o-rings:

  • leave the fork on the bike;
  • thoroughly wash and clean the fork and the bike - especially around the headtube, downtube area - we don't want dirt falling down onto our fork;
  • deflate positive and negative air chambers;
  • remove disc brake caliper and tie with string or bungee cord somewhere out of the way;
  • drop the fork lowers and set them aside;
  • remove air spring circlip and remove air spring assembly out the bottom of the fork leg;
  • remove large o-rings from the air piston and air spring seal head - these are both the same size M3.5x21mm o-rings. You don't need any tools to remove these o-rings - use thumb and forefinger to slide around o-ring so it bulges out of the slot and then roll it out of the slot with the thumb on your other hand;
  • remove seal head from air spring by sliding off air shaft - this enables you to get access to the internal o-ring which is M3x10mm o-ring. You will need to use a small pick or screwdriver to get this one out. Take care not to damage the plastic seal head;

Air spring seal o-ring
  • liberally apply grease to new o-rings and fit them;
  • installation is the reverse of disassembly, but remember to fill the lowers with 10ml of splash lube oil.

What forks does this apply to?

The following forks use the same o-rings:

  • Reba;
  • Revelation; and
  • SID 2008-current.

Related articles:

Rockshox SID problem diagnosis

Note: these diagnostic procedures will apply to pretty much any Rockshox dual air fork including Reba, Reba 29er and Revelation forks.

Rockshox fork service kit part numbers

Service Kit Part Number
Basic service kit
Full service kit
Reba 2012+
Sid B (120mm) dual air

Rockshox SID Bushing Replacement

Rockshox genuine tools are expensive and hard to find. The bushings themselves are fairly cheap.

Rockshox SID Damping Fluid Leak

On a ride recently, my forks starting to feel harsh and when I stopped to take a look it was obvious from the dirt on my stanchions that I wasn't getting full travel from the fork.

Rockshox lockout not working

Three possible causes:

Rockshox SID Race 2009

What does it weigh?

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© 8 October 2014