2012 Harley Softail spoke wheel LOOSE!

Discussion in 'Road Warriors' started by concours, Oct 21, 2012.

  1. Tepi

    Tepi Been here awhile

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    My spokes look like the ones in the picture, but if they are tight and the wheel is centered, then whats the problem?
    #61
  2. concours

    concours WFO for 41 years

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    Ever see a clown bike at the circus with the egg shaped wheels?
    #62
  3. Tepi

    Tepi Been here awhile

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    yeah, but if the tension is correct on both sides the wheel should be centered and if the wheel rotates without throw, then whats the problem? Obviously this wasnt the case in the OP's but in my case everything seems fine.
    #63
  4. concours

    concours WFO for 41 years

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    No problem. The tension could be correct, but if the spokes are not engaged roughly the same amount in the nipples before starting the truing process, (or in this case VERY loose, and then tightened from ONE side only) Then: A) The wheel will be offset to one side, and B) there is likely a dangerously small amount of threads engaged in the nipple on one side (refer to images, remember, nipples have a threadless counterbore part way in) . Yours is probably just fine. In the snowmobile world we just say: "justridethesonofawhore!" :lol3:freaky
    #64
  5. Tepi

    Tepi Been here awhile

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    Took a look at my wheels and indeed there are more and less threaded ones HOWEVER, the ones with less thread showing are the right and left side inner spokes and the ones with more thread showing are the ones that are outer spokes. (you know the way they come out from the hub and how they go over and under each other). I might grab a picture later, but really you have to look at it from more than just at the rim side. Seems totally logical as the inner spokes will naturally have a shorter distance from the hub to the rim, thus less thread to show.
    #65
  6. Lobby

    Lobby Viel Spass, Vato!

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    I had a broken spoke on my 12GS BMW. It's fair to say that this stuff happens to all motorcycle manufacturers.

    Me? My next bike will have cast wheels. :deal Spokes are time consuming to clean and they can break / come loose.
    #66
  7. Süsser Tod

    Süsser Tod Long timer

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    I hate inner tubes

    [​IMG]

    Plugging a tubeless tire takes no more than 5 minutes.
    #67
  8. windmill

    windmill Long timer

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    I was referring to having a spare tire. :deal

    I wouldn't want to patch or plug a tire out in a snow storm
    #68
  9. concours

    concours WFO for 41 years

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    So, try as they might, after another try, the front end still shakes like a whore in church, 4 big weights lumped on one side, spokes hanging out. At least they successfully made the brake feel as it should!:clap

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    #69
  10. JerryH

    JerryH Banned

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    All kinds of issues here. First of all, yes there was a problem with the first dealer, and apparently with the second dealer as well. Second, LOOSE SPOKES CANNOT CAUSE A PROBLEM WITH THE BRAKES. Even if the forks flex, bith the wheel and the caliper are bolted to the fork lower in one rigid assembly. Third, those spoke nipples are junk. The look Chinese. I can see damaged nipples in the top picture from using a spoke wrench on them. They are probably made of super soft metal. Also look how thin the square part is. There is actually a gap at each corner. Total junk. Best way to fix this problem is to send the wheels to Buchanan's and have them laced up right with quality spokes and nipples.

    The brake most likely just had air in the line. Some high school dropout probably worked on it, took the MC cover off, or accidentally loosened the bleed screw, then didn't know how to fix it.

    I have had very few problems with loose or broken spokes, but it does occasionally happen. It happens a lot on dirt and dual sport bikes because many riders run the pressure way to low, allowing the wheel to flex too much, and eventually it will come apart. I have an XT225 that I have never had wheel problems with. But the wheels are cheap, definitely built to a price. Many people have had broken spokes, spoked pulled through the rim, and elongated holes in the hub with these bikes, even after getting stronger spokes. I credit my not abusing mine (it's a trail bike, not an MX bike) and not riding it with nearly flat tires for my lack of wheel problems.


    Tube type tires have no place on street bikes. Spoke wheels that can use tubeless tires have been around for decades. Many BMWs use them, and Honda used them one time, way back in the '80s, on the '86 and '87 Rebel 450. They never used them again. It amazes me that people want FI and ABS and other modern electronic technology, yet happily accept 60 year old tire/wheel technology. Especially since something much better already exists. I will not get over a few miles from home on a bike with tube type tires, unless it has a centerstand. My XT225 has a centerstand, and my former KLR650 had a centerstand. A flat with tube type tires will completely strand you if you cannot get the wheel off the bike to put a new tube in it. All you can do with your new $20,000 bike with 1940s tires when you have a flat is just stand there like a fool and look at it, and hope your cell phone does not say "no service".

    Not only that, but when a tube is punctured, it usually pops like a balloon, resulting in a blowout, and immediate loss of all the air in the tire. A tubeless tire usually loses air much more slowly, giving you a chance to slow down. I have found objects sticking in my tubeless tires at home, that had been in there for no telling how many miles. The tire just sealed around them. Not going to happen with tube type tires.


    Sad to hear about Harley, I already found out about their Chinese connection. People used to complain because they had Japanese parts on them. Now they are made out of Chinese parts (but so are Japanese and European bikes) I am definitely getting a Harley in the near future. I'm 53 and have never owned one. I've waited long enough. But I will be getting a used one, probably an early to mid '90s model, with a carb and the EVO engine. While I have never owned a Harley, I have worked on several EVOs and know it well.
    #70
  11. anotherguy

    anotherguy Long timer

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    Describe the condition that makes it shake. I've been through this a few time w/Softails.
    #71
  12. AKDuc

    AKDuc Alaska Born Ducatisti

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    When this much weight is required, it might be time to rotate the tire 180 degrees. It's worked for me in the past. Good luck, MH

    #72
  13. UnknownLegend

    UnknownLegend Adventurer

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    :cryGeez...:crycan't takin it! Still shakes/vibrates over 70mph. Not the wobbleallovertheroad like when the spokes were loose, but very noticable making it difficult to grip the handgrips due to the wicked vibration
    #73
  14. Lobby

    Lobby Viel Spass, Vato!

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    Without meaning to be rude, am I the only one thinking it may be time to get rid of those spoke wheels and get cast ones?
    #74
  15. boxermoose

    boxermoose Now fully goosed

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    I agree...Lobsters are the most genial of the cruestation family and rarely rude. Of course I prefer them freshly bathed in real hot water with a melted butter chaser

    As for the brakes - I'll bet the mech accidently squeezed the lever, popped out the piston part way and just slipped it back, damaging the caliper seal and causing air to enter the system every time the lever was released and the piston withdraws from the rotor
    #75
  16. Lobby

    Lobby Viel Spass, Vato!

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    :D

    :wave

    I still wanna see your goose, Moose. :deal
    #76
  17. concours

    concours WFO for 41 years

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    Agreed. I have been on NON-spoked wheels since I had my '74 Stupid Glide with Invader 5 spoke fabricated wheels. THAT being said, we can't deny the nostalgia wave that has sold thens of thousands of new antiques, and to many cruiser riders, that has a lot of value. They will work fine, when properly assembled. Modern bikes have had mags for decades, so the number of mechanics with spoke wheel truing skills has dwindled. :deal
    #77
  18. concours

    concours WFO for 41 years

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    I was gonna stop by and test ride it tonight.. but it was too goddamned COLD coming back from the polls on the old Notrun. :eek1
    #78
  19. merc16

    merc16 Been here awhile

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    Bump for subscription.
    #79
  20. FlySniper

    FlySniper Bleh...

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    Since the bike shakes even worse, either all that weight is not needed or the rim is way out of concentricity with the hub.

    Truing stands are easy to make, good (enough for this job) dial indicators are cheap as are spoke wrenches. It just takes time and patience... and a light touch with the spoke wrench! An eighth or sixteenth of a turn makes a difference.... Nipple grease makes things more pleasurable too.:deal

    I rebuilt the front wheel of my DR650 when the rim split. It turned out well and was easier than I thought.
    #80