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Potentially serious question!!! please help

Discussion in 'Motorcycles' started by smbundy13, Aug 25, 2010.

  1. Aug 25, 2010 at 10:13 AM
    #1
    smbundy13

    smbundy13 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    ok, so I went for my first serious ride last weekend.. besides being crazy hot (birmingham alabama, go figure) it was good.

    My question is this. I have sort of noticed a vibration in the handlebars at certain speeds.. not sure if it is the motor or the front wheel not being balanced? or it could be from the road.. not sure.

    but I got on the interstate and cruised for about 10 miles or so and it didnt feel like the front end was going to fall off or anything like that but there was still the vibration..

    the bike is actually due for maintenance because it has been a little over a year since the last time it got maintenance done on it.

    the bike has 11k miles on it and at around 10k my father in-law got new tires and a new front wheel, could they have not balanced the wheel? (it is a spoked wheel also)

    I am not really sure what I need to do. It doesnt feel liek somthing is bad wrong but I just dont know.

    thanks for your help!!
     
  2. Aug 25, 2010 at 10:23 AM
    #2
    Bama_TACO

    Bama_TACO ROLL TIDE!!!!!!!

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    If it's just a certain speed that it does it, it's more than likely a balance issue with the front wheel/tire assembly.
     
  3. Aug 25, 2010 at 10:33 AM
    #3
    smbundy13

    smbundy13 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    thats what I was thinking but I cant really tell if it is just at certain speeds.. guess I need to ride it more to investigate it :)
     
  4. Aug 25, 2010 at 10:34 AM
    #4
    Bobo_1

    Bobo_1 Well-Known Member

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    Depends on the type of bike you have. You should have started the thread with that info. If it is a VTwin 45 degree engine then you will have vibration in the handle bars.

    If it is spoked (as in laced) then check your spokes and trueness. You can try and check trueness while the wheel is on but I would remove the front brake. Or you can pull the wheel and use a make shift mount with wood or even saw horses to check for balance and trueness.
     
  5. Aug 25, 2010 at 10:52 AM
    #5
    jester156

    jester156 Well-Known Member

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    safety note, if it doesn't feel right, not worth riding more to find out, one way or the others. The bike offers no protections should something with the wheels be seriously wrong.
    if its motor vibration, u should be able to feel it at any speed given certain RMP of the motor, that being said, u could probably find this out by twisting the throttle in the driveway in neutral.
    if on the HW and you engage the clutch, do u still feel the vibration?
     
  6. Aug 25, 2010 at 10:58 AM
    #6
    BritMike

    BritMike Well-Known Member

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    Tires / front wheel would be top of the list for me. Some bikes are very sensitive to different tires and have to be balanced perfectly (sound familiar ? :) ).

    The older interceptors are particularly known for it, my '94 VFR750 will shake the bars and eventually work itself into a tank slap at 45 mph if you don't keep at least a finger on the bars. Every other speed its absolutely fine, just at 45 mph all the vibrations line up just right to be real nasty.
     
  7. Aug 25, 2010 at 11:28 AM
    #7
    smbundy13

    smbundy13 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    sorry, it is an 07 sportster 883. with a spoked wheel. i will have to ride it around the block to see if it is speed sensitive or constant.
     
  8. Aug 25, 2010 at 11:58 AM
    #8
    Pugga

    Pugga Pasti-Dip Free 1983 - 2015... It was a good run

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    It's a Harley, of course it's going to rattle! Sorry man, couldn't resist...

    In all seriousness though, if it vibrates enough to concern you, I second what someone else said, it's not worth riding more to find out what will fail. If something is installed incorrectly or breaks, theres not much between you and the pavement. It could be caused by a number of problems, the motor, spokes or even suspension.
     
  9. Aug 25, 2010 at 12:08 PM
    #9
    cadman

    cadman Well-Known Member

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    what is the air pressure in the tires? if the bike has been sitting for a while you may have a slight flat spot. also check the axle pinch bolts.

    cadman
     
  10. Aug 25, 2010 at 2:13 PM
    #10
    smbundy13

    smbundy13 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    is the psi listed on the side of the tire? it was maybe sitting for a month before i got it.. maybe two months. that isnt long enough to get a flat spot right?
     
  11. Aug 25, 2010 at 5:37 PM
    #11
    tx_shooter

    tx_shooter This place is a cesspool of bfo and spacer lifts

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    The things I would check - and this is from experience - in this order:
    1) Air Pressure and tire condition (I've had a cheaper tire start to seperate on my bike and it was "bouncy" at lower speeds and smooth at highway speeds... as I rode it an hour home to find out I was missing patches of tread.)
    2) Check the torque on the front axle - if the nut is loose there won't be enough pressure on the bearings letting the tire become unstable at lower speeds and when manuvering.
    3) Neck bearings - if the bearings in the neck are not torqued correctly or haven't been lubed in forever then the front end can feel like it is loose/sloppy.
    4) Handle bar bolts - they do loosen up but generally it takes 75-100k miles to make them start getting loose, but time has a way of making odd things happen fast.

    As far as riding a Harley - its one of the few things that keep me sane and the idiots I work with alive. ;)

    Here is my sled
    [​IMG]

    And just incase you think your Sportster rides rough - just think back to when they were Ironheads with solid mount motors and jackhammer shocks. This is the bike I grew up riding when I was just old enough to ride on back, and later on when I was old enough to know better than start it in the front yard if I didn't want to wake up Dad.
    [​IMG]
     
  12. Aug 25, 2010 at 5:39 PM
    #12
    ktmrider

    ktmrider Senior Member

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    Revolutions minute per? JK i know what you ment
     
  13. Aug 26, 2010 at 3:45 AM
    #13
    jester156

    jester156 Well-Known Member

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    u got that right:D, its my Yota speak, and no, not YODA
     
  14. Aug 26, 2010 at 6:16 AM
    #14
    Bobo_1

    Bobo_1 Well-Known Member

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    You are going to have vibration with a 45 degree vtwin. If this is your first one then it may be that you are just not used to it yet. As an 07 it is rubber mount which is suppose to reduce vibration so much so that HD decided to get rid of the bushings in the top triple tree where the risers bolt up.

    I would check the front engine mount. Check out this thread about vibration when the bolt was loose: http://xlforum.net/vbportal/forums/showthread.php?t=27701. BTW, join xlforum.net. You will get all the help you need.

    If it is normal vibration then you can try these: http://www.vibranator.com/. You can get plenty of opinions on these on xlforum.net.
     
  15. Aug 26, 2010 at 9:14 AM
    #15
    smbundy13

    smbundy13 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    thanks alot everybody.. yes this is my first big bike.. just gotta get used to it i guess. I am planning on getting some nice gloves this weekend so that could help a little with the vibration.
     
  16. Aug 26, 2010 at 4:05 PM
    #16
    tx_shooter

    tx_shooter This place is a cesspool of bfo and spacer lifts

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    Forget the gloves - get some good grips.

    [​IMG]

    http://www.motorcycle-superstore.com/3/13/121/8111/ITEM/Kuryakyn-ISO-Grips.aspx


    I put a set on my bike - and pretty much everyone I ride with has them because they are some of the best grips for long rides.
     
  17. Aug 26, 2010 at 4:14 PM
    #17
    smbundy13

    smbundy13 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    well I took a ride today and put air in my front tire.. it was a bit low. it felt a lot better.

    thanks for the info everybody
     
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