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Old 05-21-2011, 02:47 PM   #391
ian03xl
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bloodweiser View Post
well.

I have a dilemma.

Shocks or Tires?



Shocks used to be painful. Then I got a hand-me-down set of 12-series progressives that took away the back pain but left the discomfort. They're either too hard or to soft. boo.

Tires are 6 year old stockers with ~6kmi under their belt. I've got a pretty hefty wobble around 45-55 mph, pretty horrendous if I take my hands off the bars while decelerating through this range. Today, when attempting to add some pressure to the front tire using my landlords POS compressor, I was left with only 15 psi. Rode to the gas station to use theirs and lo, the wobble be gone. Safe to assume the wobble is tire related?

Damn things just have good tread, hate to throw away free miles.
Get new tires the stock dunlops aren't good tires anyway. Tires have a certain amount of safety factor to them that I do not dismiss shocks are mostly a comfort item and you can get them another time.
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Old 05-21-2011, 04:18 PM   #392
83XLX
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Quote:
Originally Posted by garandman View Post
This is my bike just about done.

Semi-gloss black powdercoated rims.
Metzler ME880 tires.
Ricor Intiminators in the front forks.
SuperBrace.
Customized solo saddle.
Vibrinators in the handlebars, which are narrower bars from another Sportster midel.
Looks good! So, how's the seat? Does a somewhat higher seat improve the seat/peg relationship?
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Old 05-21-2011, 05:11 PM   #393
Ginger Beard
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Quote:
Originally Posted by garandman View Post
This is my bike just about done.

Semi-gloss black powdercoated rims.
Metzler ME880 tires.
Ricor Intiminators in the front forks.
SuperBrace.
Customized solo saddle.
Vibrinators in the handlebars, which are narrower bars from another Sportster midel.

Nice! What eye to eye are your shocks?
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Old 05-21-2011, 06:33 PM   #394
garandman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wishin4woods View Post
Nice! What eye to eye are your shocks?
13.25. The Ricors I have on order are the same.


Quote:
Originally Posted by 83XLX View Post
Looks good! So, how's the seat? Does a somewhat higher seat improve the seat/peg relationship?
Yes and yes.
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Old 05-21-2011, 06:33 PM   #395
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Bloodweiser - What model and year Sportster do you have?

The front stock Dunlop tends to have weak side walls and follow grooves in the road. Increasing air pressure to 40 psi is the cheapest fix for that problem.

I don't think there are any time limits on tires, as long as you don't see small weather cracks on the tires. I would replace any tire with visible weather cracks, especially larger ones.

The rubber drive belt is another thing to consider replacing before it breaks. But again, I don't know of any time limits.

Adding the Ricor Intiminator to the forks is the best single suspension mod. It tends to reduce front to rear coupling and softens the shocks to the point where it is common to reduce shock preload. I cannot say for sure if it will be enough for you.

Another common cause for wobble is having too much forward chassis pitch which occurs with higher rear / lower front. Raise your front end 1/4" at a time by lowering the forks in the triple clamps may help. Maybe adding more spring preload to the forks will help? What is your fork rider sag?

If you went with longer shocks, they could be causing an over tightened belt to bind up the rear suspension. If the belt is over tightened, you can take the shocks off and feel it bind up when the rear axle is moved through a line formed by the swing arm pivot bolts and center of the front pulley. An over tightened belt can also cause the engine to be jerked backwards when you hit bumps in the road.
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Old 05-21-2011, 07:03 PM   #396
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bloodweiser View Post
well.

I have a dilemma.

Shocks or Tires?



Shocks used to be painful. Then I got a hand-me-down set of 12-series progressives that took away the back pain but left the discomfort. They're either too hard or to soft. boo.

Tires are 6 year old stockers with ~6kmi under their belt. I've got a pretty hefty wobble around 45-55 mph, pretty horrendous if I take my hands off the bars while decelerating through this range. Today, when attempting to add some pressure to the front tire using my landlords POS compressor, I was left with only 15 psi. Rode to the gas station to use theirs and lo, the wobble be gone. Safe to assume the wobble is tire related?

Damn things just have good tread, hate to throw away free miles.


In typical city driving front tires wear into a V shape with a flattened out point because you are either on the side in a turn or on the peak on the road. With the low tire pressure you flattened out the tire profile a little bit and gave the tire more of a rounded profile so the tire wasn't having to chose between the peak or the transition to the side. Since the rear tire is wider and doesn't get the corner forces of the front the wear is not as evident in back.

I took the sidecar off my Sportster once and tried to ride it. Talk about transition and wobble.
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Old 05-22-2011, 05:45 AM   #397
Ginger Beard
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Quote:
Originally Posted by garandman View Post
13.25. The Ricors I have on order are the same.

Thanks man. The bike looks great. Have you gotten to do a long ride with the new saddle?
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Old 05-22-2011, 10:25 AM   #398
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ian03xl View Post
Get new tires the stock dunlops aren't good tires anyway. Tires have a certain amount of safety factor to them that I do not dismiss shocks are mostly a comfort item and you can get them another time.
I knew I was going to get a 'safety first' comment, though I do agree.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wanna Ride View Post
Bloodweiser - What model and year Sportster do you have?

The front stock Dunlop tends to have weak side walls and follow grooves in the road. Increasing air pressure to 40 psi is the cheapest fix for that problem.

I don't think there are any time limits on tires, as long as you don't see small weather cracks on the tires. I would replace any tire with visible weather cracks, especially larger ones.

The rubber drive belt is another thing to consider replacing before it breaks. But again, I don't know of any time limits.

Adding the Ricor Intiminator to the forks is the best single suspension mod. It tends to reduce front to rear coupling and softens the shocks to the point where it is common to reduce shock preload. I cannot say for sure if it will be enough for you.

Another common cause for wobble is having too much forward chassis pitch which occurs with higher rear / lower front. Raise your front end 1/4" at a time by lowering the forks in the triple clamps may help. Maybe adding more spring preload to the forks will help? What is your fork rider sag?

If you went with longer shocks, they could be causing an over tightened belt to bind up the rear suspension. If the belt is over tightened, you can take the shocks off and feel it bind up when the rear axle is moved through a line formed by the swing arm pivot bolts and center of the front pulley. An over tightened belt can also cause the engine to be jerked backwards when you hit bumps in the road.

2006 1200R.

Following grooves doesn't seem to be the issue with my wobbling front. It's a speed thing for certain, regardless of road conditions.

I've checked the belt, didn't bind anywhere in the travel. I did go up 1/4" in shock length, from 13.25 to 13.5.

I've checked my chassis pitch by measuring the frame rails from the floor. My front is higher unladen and with a rider.

I've got Ricors. No additional preload.
Forks measured from top of fork tube:
Unladen length 15 3/4"
Bike sag 15 5/16"
Rider sag 14 5/8"

after a ride I found was using 3 11/16" of travel. Average ride, no bumps large enough to bottom out my shocks.
Anybody know what the max travel is for a roadster? It seems like there was quite a bit left.


What does that all mean?


The only other thing I can think to check is the steering head bearings, they do feel very light when the wheel was up.
Read the manual... it's on the list to do this week.


Quote:
Originally Posted by DirtDabber View Post
In typical city driving front tires wear into a V shape with a flattened out point because you are either on the side in a turn or on the peak on the road. With the low tire pressure you flattened out the tire profile a little bit and gave the tire more of a rounded profile so the tire wasn't having to chose between the peak or the transition to the side. Since the rear tire is wider and doesn't get the corner forces of the front the wear is not as evident in back.
I never drive city, maybe 3% of the time. I'm a country mouse.

At any rate, I like your answer.

Bloodweiser screwed with this post 05-23-2011 at 07:38 PM
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Old 05-22-2011, 04:35 PM   #399
garandman
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Old 05-22-2011, 07:01 PM   #400
pescatore
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Quote:
Originally Posted by garandman View Post
Embracing my inner GEEK with Photoshop.
Hey I just noticed the background - you're in my 'hood! I live in Southie - nice to see another Sporty around here. Looking forward to hearing some long term experience with the new seat. Did you have it done around here somewhere?
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Old 05-22-2011, 08:32 PM   #401
NJ-Brett
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But I did!
I had 4 different sets of bars, and I went from the stock 11.5 inch long shocks to 13 inch progressive suspension shocks and did their fork springs and 15 weight fork oil.
It was like night and day, the suspension was fine after, but why SO bad at first?

The thing that bugged me the most was the mid peg location (a bit too far forward) and the weight of the bike, it just feels very heavy.

I thought the bike was very well made, plenty of power, never had any trouble with it at all, looked great, sounded great, had great range with the 4.5 gallon tank, I just could not get comfortable on it, unlike the old ones.

Maybe because it was a 1200, at top speed I am sure it vibrated more then the old frame mount 883 I had, and everything was tight.
Just too much for the rubber mounts to handle.
It was VERY violent at top speed.

I don't dislike Harleys, the 1200 was my 3rd new Harley, I just disliked what the moco did with the 1200 low.
Surely it would not cost them anything to put thicker oil in the forks so they did not crash and bottom out on every little bump.
If you MUST get the seat real low, surely you can come up with something other then removing almost all of the suspension travel.




I most likely would have got the roadster if they still made one.
What I really should have got was an old one, they seemed like they were made for normal size people.







Quote:
Originally Posted by Wanna Ride View Post
I have Ricor Vibranators in my handle bars, they work well. I have old two stroke dirt bike wrist pain and cannot tolerate any handle bar vibration.

All the rubber mount Sportsters I have ridden had significantly less vibration than the frame mount Sportsters, and less than any of the air cooled Buells I rode. The air cooled Buells had pretty bad handle bar vibration when coming to a stop sign and letting the rpm's go to idle. The rubber mount XR's vibration is a bit worse than the XL's.

Loose rubber mount bolts are common cause of vibration on rubber mount bikes.



Stock Harley set up is pretty bad, but what were you expecting from a bike with only 2" suspension travel? With modifications common to middle weight cruisers, my 06 Roadster is comfortable enough to ride all day. The last frame mount Sportster I rode was for 15 minutes and was glad to get off. The rubber mount works good for a middle weight cruiser. The real problem was you never learned how to set your bike up correctly.
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Old 05-22-2011, 08:37 PM   #402
NJ-Brett
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I think there are mowers with more HP then my bike has.
Really.


Quote:
Originally Posted by wishin4woods View Post
Woohoo more unnecessary pissing and moaning in a Sporty thread. You can't help but telegraph your inability to ride bikes with more hp than a push mower can you?



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Old 05-22-2011, 08:41 PM   #403
NJ-Brett
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Now that looks like a sensible bike!
Like the bars, like the ground clearance, like the higher seat.
Just put some good shocks on the back and it seems like a very nice to ride standard bike.




Quote:
Originally Posted by garandman View Post
This is my bike just about done.

Semi-gloss black powdercoated rims.
Metzler ME880 tires.
Ricor Intiminators in the front forks.
SuperBrace.
Customized solo saddle.
Vibrinators in the handlebars, which are narrower bars from another Sportster midel.
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Old 05-22-2011, 09:06 PM   #404
NJ-Brett
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My 2005 Triumph Bonneville did the same thing, with 5000 miles on it.
Stock as far as the suspension went, I thought it might have been the under damped rear shocks.
Quite wild going around high speed turns on the hiway, thought I was going to lose it a few times.

I don't know about your bike, but on my 2009, the suspension was way under damped at both ends. No wobbles though.
I went from 11.5 inch shocks to 13 inch shocks, plus pushed the forks all the way down in the clamps, and added some fork preload, and still had no wobbles. That is a big jump in the rear, 11.5 to 13 inches, but i had plenty of damping after the changes..

One thing I never understood was how they hold rear wheel alignment with the rubber mounted swingarm, under heavy throttle I would think the swingarm would twist out of alignment.

Good luck getting it sorted.





Quote:
Originally Posted by Bloodweiser View Post
I knew I was going to get a 'safety first' comment, though I do agree.




2006 1200R.

Following grooves doesn't seem to be the issue with my wobbling front. It's a speed thing for certain, regardless of road conditions.

I've checked the belt, didn't bind anywhere in the travel. I did go up 1/2" in shock length, from 13.25 to 13.5.

I've checked my chassis pitch by measuring the frame rails from the floor. My front is higher unladen and with a rider.

I've got Ricors. No additional preload.
Forks measured from top of fork tube:
Unladen length 15 3/4"
Bike sag 15 5/16"
Rider sag 14 5/8"

after a ride I found was using 3 11/16" of travel. Average ride, no bumps large enough to bottom out my shocks.
Anybody know what the max travel is for a roadster? It seems like there was quite a bit left.


What does that all mean?


The only other thing I can think to check is the steering head bearings, they do feel very light when the wheel was up.
Read the manual... it's on the list to do this week.




I never drive city, maybe 3% of the time. I'm a country mouse.

At any rate, I like your answer.
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Old 05-22-2011, 11:27 PM   #405
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Bloodweiser - I forgot to also ask how much do you weigh, how hard do you ride, and what suspension mods are currently on the bike?

The Roadster forks have more like 5" total travel, so you could use another 1/2" to 3/4" rider sag, especially if you are not bottoming the forks, and are sure the oil level in the forks is not so high to limit bottoming.

Once you set rider sag of forks and shocks, then set chassis pitch by moving the forks up or down in the triple clamps so the frame rails under the engine are level with the floor with rider on the bike. Use this as a starting point to check other things that may cause wobble. Once you get the wobble fixed, then you can adjust chassis pitch to your preference.

There are a a lot of different things that can cause a wobble, your bike can have one or several. You have to check each and every one until you get it fixed.

Tighten steering head bearings, fork brace, better tires, check wheels and rims for running true, check wheel bearings, and rear wheel alignment. The screw adjusters at the back of the swing arm tighten belt and align rear wheel at the same time.

There are 3 stabilizer links from the engine to the frame. The easiest one to see goes from the front cylinder head to the frame. These links hold the engine in front to rear alignment, but along with the rubber mounts, allow the engine to vibrate vertically.

There is a pivot shaft that goes through a big mounting lug on the rear of the engine. The swing arm pivot bolts screw into the outer ends of the pivot shaft. Check for play at the swing arm pivot bearings / bolts AND where the pivot shaft is mounted in the rear engine mount lug.

My point here is, the rubber mounts themselves have nothing to do with keeping the rear wheel in alignment with the front. That relationship is maintained by the stabilizer links and swing arm pivot shaft.

If all these things don't fix the wobble, go over to XL forum and read the "7 Pages of Suspension" Sticky in the Suspension Sticky Section. There is a link to the infamous "Wobble" thread, which is about a months worth of reading by itself, but every known cause of wobble is listed there.

Wanna Ride screwed with this post 05-22-2011 at 11:37 PM
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