violent wobble - Kawasaki Vulcan Forum : Vulcan Forums
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-14-2015, 08:58 PM Thread Starter
Kim
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violent wobble

2003 1600 classic.has anyone had this problem? if you let go of the bars the front end starts to wobble back & forth and progressively gets worse to the point of wrecking the bike if you don't stop it.I have had several shops look at it. balancing ,balance beads ,check run out , new tire ect. any ideas I'm beginning to take this personal. And yes I know your not supost to let go of the bars.
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-14-2015, 09:45 PM
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My '07 Nomad does that too....the steering head nut needs to be snugged up a bit. But....doing it looks to be an all-day train wreck, with everything that has to be removed to get at the bugger. I've just resigned myself to keeping one hand on a grip all the time (with my throttle lock I can switch hands if one gets tired). Maybe this winter, if I get motivated, I might try the fix.....maybe.

'07 VN1600
'08 FSC600
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-15-2015, 01:19 AM
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Last year I had the same issue with my Voyager, it was the steering head nut. Them wobble on my bike was the same, scared the sh_t out of me. I told the shop what it was doing and they would not test drive it due to the danger. They started taking it apart and 1 3/4 hrs of labor, the steering head nut was about 3/4 of a turn loose. No more wobble.
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-15-2015, 08:38 AM
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This is called "Death Wobble" for a good reason. How soon you get around to fixing it is up to you. However, it's not going to get better on it's on and will likely progressively get worse. Eventually it will start to shake and wobble even if you let off the throttle too quickly. I urge you to get this problem fixed sooner rather than later (or too late).

Cheers!

Mike

2008 VN1600 NOMAD. Only 2,400 miles when I bought it in June of 2015. Everything stock for now, mods to come including the Big Three.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-15-2015, 10:36 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys.I had the steering head nut tightened a few months ago and it seamed to help (not all the way) but quite a bit. maybe it has loosened up again.I will have it checked again Its been about 4000 miles. has anyone tried a steering stabilizer.
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-15-2015, 05:03 PM
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Maybe I should clarify.....mine only wobbles when I have the lock on and let go of the bars.....as long as I keep one hand on a grip it's fine. This is entirely different than the early '69 Mach III I had, which when you got up around the ton, the front end became epileptic, no matter how tightly you hung on. Now, to be frank, I've not had the 1600 much over 80 as yet, as the "need for speed" hasn't come up yet.

Anyway, since there are occasions when I wanna do something when I'm motoring smartly down the byways (not texting), it'd be nice to flip the lock and have both hands free, as I can do on the H-D's. So, may get fired up to do the fix.

'07 VN1600
'08 FSC600
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-15-2015, 05:16 PM
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Weight balance can cause this issue too. If you have a lot of weight on the rear of the bike, it can create problems. Both the front AND the rear tire can cause a front wobble too.

Definitely have that front end checked out. Might even play with suspension settings.

"8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us."

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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-15-2015, 07:24 PM
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My 08 Nomad had the same problem. The head bearings were loose at about 6K miles. Its not a difficult job to make the repair. A word of caution. I had heard that a lot of these bikes had little grease on the bearings. Mine had very, very little grease top and bottom. So if you are going to do it, grease the bearings......not just tighten the nut! Note that these are taper roller bearings and appear to be good quality. Remove windshield first. I used choker straps at the top bolts of the front crash bar up to a chain hoist. Movers blanket on top of the tank. Raise bike to sit level on the floor. Remove handle bars (studs) and lay back on tank. Remove headlight bucket, covers, etc. Then remove top tree, stem nuts, etc. Wiggle fork to force top bearing out, up. Then slightly raise bike to expose lower bearing. Grease and lower bike back in place. Reassemble in reverse order to get the stem nut back on. Leave fork pinch bolts loose for now. Proceed to tighten and loosen the stem nut several times to seat the bearings. I then raised front wheel off the floor and tighten until fork would not "fall" to either side. Don't forget to tighten fork tube pinch bolts. Finish installing remainder of parts. I am on my third new front tire since and bike has no hint of a wobble.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-16-2015, 07:22 AM
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I had that same problem on my 07 nomad. when I put on new tires, it went away.

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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-24-2015, 07:09 PM
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Have you checked out replacing your triple tree bearings? I had to do it on my 1600 Classsic
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