Kawasaki Vulcan Forum banner

1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
More of an FYI than a "why".

Had a new Dunlop Elite 3, 130/90-16, installed this morning. Specifically requested them to inflate the tire to 40PSI, but haven't yet verified that it was done.
On my way back to work, I could feel the handlebars wanting to oscillate.
This replaced a Metzeler ME888 of unknown total mileage. I bought the bike in November of 2016 with 48k miles, and as of this morning, the bike had just under 55K miles, so I put about 6500 on that tire myself. The Metzeler was also wobbly, at most any speed.

I have had several bikes with tendencies to wobble at the bars, Honda Goldwings and PC800's especially, and at least on PC800 that weaved from the rear, so as long as I know it is likely, I just don't remove both hands from the bars. Thank goodness for cruise or throttle locks!

It does seem to be a long distance from the fender to the triple tree-is there a superbrace for the V V, anyone know if bar end weights would remedy? I'll probably just live with it, but would be nice to know I could release the bars if needed. The Wings and others only tended to have issues around 35-45 mph, and not elsewhere-have been as much as 21 miles on a GL1500 with "no hands", and that only ended when a cager pulled out in front of me.

Hopefully, at least, I will see some decent miles from the E3. On the Wing, I found that 40-41 psi was the best spot to prevent mature wear. Cupping is guaranteed, but I hate to see the wear bars early.

Enjoy! Ride Safe-ride!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
48 Posts
Most likely your problem is rooted in the stem bearings. Either worn, out of adjustment, or lacking grease...basic bearing type from the oem may be a contributor as well. Hondas I've had used chincy ball type bearings instead of the better performing tapered roller bearing. The permanent fix required changing bearing type and in turn using a different adjustment procedure to eliminate the wobble. Been through this issue with a goldwing, a VTX1300, a nomad and now my VV1700. If I ever find the time to tear it all down I will post my findings.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,493 Posts
Had 750 shadow ,9 classic,now 1700 Nomad and never Had the wobble,I tend to stay stock w all my toys and stay with oem stuff,on 2nd set of tires on the Nad,runs and rides great
Gearheads post is where I would look
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
226 Posts
Most alternate tires (other than stock Bridgestone) will cause a steering wobble on the Voyager. Replacing the stock steering head bearings with Allballs tapered bearings will reduce the wobble. I manufacture and sell a fork brace for 1700 Voyager, Vaquero, and Nomad. Google 'Garrys Fork Brace' for more information.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
324 Posts
9000 miles on E3 at 32psi with zero issues. Never riden no hands 2-up but when solo I do tend to play the air-drums.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,707 Posts
I had some wobble when the tire was just about worn out. Two years ago replaced steering bearings with the all balls #130293 kit... No more wobble since.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
580 Posts
Also ensure that you service your forks as per the manual or at least change the fork oil. This in conjunction with other things can affect your steering
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
155 Posts
I would tend to agree with those who are pointing you toward the stem bearings. Have them replaced or simply adjusted. Do the job yourself and save some $$$$$$, not an onerous task. Not that I make a habit out of it, mind you, yet I too am guilty of air drumming at spontaneous moments. I have never had any wobble from the front end whilst in hands-free mode.

Cheers!

Mike
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
82 Posts
Had the same issue. Replaced the head bearings with the All-Balls, problem disappeared. Original ones did not look damaged but hardly any grease.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Thanks All!

I will look into checking the current head bearing clearance/torque first.

The front end behaves most of the time lately. Wobble is more noticeable when climbing a hill, with engine pulses obvious. Haven't tried any long distances, not even 1/10 mile, but can at least turn loose long enough to adjust gloves, etc.

The last time I ran 36psi in an E3, it was gone by 9,000 miles. That was the recommended (Honda) pressure on my 1999 GL1500. Inflated the replacement to 40, and wear was greatly reduced.

I'm bad not to diligently check pressure. My shop is open, so exposed to temperature extremes, and I'm not crazy about warming up the compressor when it's below freezing out, and don't like to adjust pressure after having ridden more than a few miles.

My rear tire is a Metzeler ME888 with at least 7500 miles on it (came with the bike and no documentation), and the center is slightly more worn than the outside, so I have dropped the pressure by about 1psi just to stretch until I get a new tire in a week or so.

Thanks again,
Ron
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,707 Posts
I tried the ME888 when they came available for my Voyager on the rear. It only got a few miles over 8k. So I ent back to my old faithful car tire. That tire has over 22k miles and only has worn 2/32.I have been running car tires on the rear for almost 40 years now. On my big scoots and when I could find one that would fit. It is a lot easier in the last 15 years than it was in the beginning.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
What tire and size are you using?
I have done that on two previous bikes. Ride was good, mounting was a challenge, at least getting the beads to set.
A friend has a run-flat snow tire on this GL1800, and had been satisfied.
I have had better mileage the last year or two from m/c tires than ever before, and don't mind too bad, if I can get better than 10k miles on the rear.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Mounted a new Darkside rear tire Saturday. Glad I had two friends to help, and they got some education too in the process.
Used a Kumho Ecsta PA31, 195/60-R16. Actually had more trouble demounting the ME888 than mounting the Kumho.

On the way home from work Friday, stopped by O'Reilly Auto and picked up a gallon of Xtra Seal Bead Lube (MFR PN 14-753). It's concentrated, so mixed about two cups of it to a few ounces of water into a repurposed pancake syrup bottle. Must be good stuff. I have installed two DS rear tires previously, on different bikes, and have never been able to get the tire beads to completely set without assistance from a tire shop.

This one hesitated until I hit a little over 50PSI, and popped quite loudly. Max pressure on the tire is listed as 51PSI. I deflated it to around 45 while I was reassembling everything, then down to 40 for a test ride. Pretty smooth at that pressure, even accounting for stiffening the rear shocks, as well. Clocked a little over 80 miles and deflated to around 38 later. Didn't ride again until my morning commute today, even smoother. Will probably keep this depending on how the next two-up ride goes. Only squirrelly-ness was in a rain-rut in my driveway, but that even gets an OEM tire upset.
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top