Wobble getting worse, any new ideas? - Kawasaki Vulcan Forum : Vulcan Forums
 
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-19-2012, 04:16 AM Thread Starter
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Wobble getting worse, any new ideas?

As my OEM tyres wore out I noticed the front end wobble a number of us have. I put Avon's on and the wobble was reduced but still there. They have about 6000 km on the now and the wobble is there as soon as you loosen your grip on the handlebars, but what is more concerning is that it is now coming in on slow speeds and or acceleration as well. The bike handles like a bag of shit at the moment particularly on down hill twisties changing to a heavier grade fork oil helped but handling still leaves a lot to be desired.

I have had the fork oil replaced and gone to a Heavier grade. The wheels have been off and rebalanced a few times trying to get the beast to handle better and get rid of the wobble. Whilst the dealer hasn't pulled the stem bearings out, he and his mechanics are satisfied there is no problem with them and the front forks move smoothly and return to center.

The bike has never been dropped and apart from non OEM tyres there is nothing we can think of that is causing the wobble and handling issues. I have been considering the Dunlop cruiser tyres or maybe just going back to OEM's.

Has anyone else had any success in getting rid of the wobble or improving handling?

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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-19-2012, 07:43 AM
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I had a front end wobble that went away after I replaced the steering bearings with all balls tapered bearings.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-19-2012, 07:54 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OhSteelerfan View Post
I had a front end wobble that went away after I replaced the steering bearings with all balls tapered bearings.
Per chance do you still have the bearings model number and make? Thanks

2009 Voyager, "Battle Star"
SageBrush Bib,
LED's around Headlight,
Chrome cup holders,
Marvellas passenger and rider highway pegs,
Grasshoper backrest,
Kawasaki Gel seats,
Grey Sheepskin Seat covers,
Kawasaki Rear Speakers,
Ipod Kit,
H.D. trunk rack,
Chrome passenger board covers,
Chrome Engine plate,
Door Controller,
Fog Lights wired to High Beam on/off.
Speedo Healer, Backoff Brake Module
KAM's heat kit
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-19-2012, 08:29 AM
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my bike got the wobble when I replaced the front tire. It seems to be a big problem w/ many large bikes and there is not much that can be done. If you read Wing World this issue comes up all the time, matter of fact its in the current issue again.

One solution was to switch bearings and over torque them, but this does not work for everybody. I put dyna-beads in and it help quite a bit but not completely. Bleau only wobbles in the 20-40mph ish range then goes away

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-19-2012, 09:04 AM
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Ball bearings on heavy bikes wear seats into the race which exacerbates the other reasons like tire cupping.

Torquing the bearings tighter is only a stop gap... the tighter you make them the deeper the seats become and your back where your started.

On any heavy bike with some mileage on it, changing to tapered bearings is a must.

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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-19-2012, 09:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dozrtravlin View Post
Per chance do you still have the bearings model number and make? Thanks
http://www.allballsracing.com/22-1039.html
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-19-2012, 11:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dozrtravlin View Post

Has anyone else had any success in getting rid of the wobble or improving handling?
I did. As soon as I replaced that crapy stone tire with a ME880 it doesn't wobble anymore.


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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-19-2012, 11:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dozrtravlin View Post
I have had the fork oil replaced and gone to a Heavier grade. The wheels have been off and rebalanced a few times trying to get the beast to handle better and get rid of the wobble. Whilst the dealer hasn't pulled the stem bearings out, he and his mechanics are satisfied there is no problem with them and the front forks move smoothly and return to center.

Has anyone else had any success in getting rid of the wobble or improving handling?
A soft tire will start the wobble, but it is not the root cause of the wobble being self perpetuating ! The forks are too soft, the heavier oil would help BUT you need to at least add some preload to the springs. These forks are only single acting so only work in compression. Ideally you would convert them to double acting with a Race Tech Gold Valve Emulator. This unit with the heavy oil will control the forks in both directions. With some more load on the spring they will work together always. The WALLOW is the forks bouncing in opposition to each other and this is not good for many reasons, the biggest is the amount of stress that is applied to the front axle !
Simplest method of reducing this is to add slugs to the springs so the energy is not great enough to oscillate the forks !
Tires soft or partial beaded and air turbulence on hardware is the initial impetus, the rest is energy dynamics.
I might not have all the right words, but it works out to solve the issue !
I forgot to mention that with mine, The emulator takes up 15 mm of spring. I shortened spring by 8 mm and left 7 mm for pre-load ! This worked out great on my '97 and it was done about 13yrs ago by myself.

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Last edited by CRUISERDON; 06-19-2012 at 11:39 AM.
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