Help! Stuck in Ft Collins 2 Hours from Home

Discussion in 'Parallel Universe' started by KSUperDuty, Apr 21, 2013.

  1. KSUperDuty

    KSUperDuty Adventurer

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    The front end on my 1000 mile old F800 just developed a shimmy in the front end. I noticed a slight intermittent vibration in the front today, but I chalked it up to uneven pavement. 60 or so miles later I took both hands off the bars at about 40 mph and the bar started oscillating like crazy. Hands on bars it seems fine with only that slight vibration. I'm not experienced enough to know if I should venture home or what I should do. Off the ground, the wheel spins fine, no excessive mud, can't see where the tread is separated or bad anywhere, bead looks fine. I took a couple pictures of both sides of the hub. Am I missing a bolt? What can I check, or what can I do? I have to work in the AM, and I don't really want to overnight here. Waiting patiently in a parking lot.

    [​IMG]
    Untitled by KSUperDuty, on Flickr

    [​IMG]
    Untitled by KSUperDuty, on Flickr
    #1
  2. beeper

    beeper Badger tickler

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    Steering stem bearings loose? With front wheel off the ground check steering stem for play. Also could have tossed a wheel weight. Loose spokes?

    If nothing obviously missing or loose I'd continue home.
    #2
  3. waxrash

    waxrash Adventurer

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    Tire pressure?
    #3
  4. KSUperDuty

    KSUperDuty Adventurer

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    Thanks guys. Tire pressure is OK, can't find any loose spokes, two wheel weights in place no play between the wheel and the handlebars. I couldn't remember if there was a bolt through the center on each side or not.
    #4
  5. sorebutt

    sorebutt Long timer

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    Check to make sure the forks are tight in the triple clamps and there is the same amount of tube above the top clamp.

    Also if you have tools, loosen the pinch bolts on one side of the axle and then bounce the front wheel up and down. Then tighten the pinch bolts again.
    #5
  6. CheckerdD

    CheckerdD Long timer

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    Just curious. Is the tread on the front tire cupping? Could the tire be out of round. By now you have most likely eliminated mechanical faults. Dave
    #6
  7. KSUperDuty

    KSUperDuty Adventurer

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    Thanks for the replies. I checked everything I could think of up front, and everything is tight. Visually nothing is different on one side or the other. No cupping on the tire either. I did have a substantial load on the bike, so I took everything off and went for a short spin on some smooth asphalt. The vibration and the handle bar wobble weren't as pronounced with less weight on the bike, but it was definitely still there.

    In the end, I decided not to ride the bike back home in the dark. I couldn't get the thought of some kind of high speed wobble debacle out of my head. Its great to be back on a bike, but my 10 year motorcycle ownership hiatus was the result of a burst fracture of my L1 vertebra. I guess I'm still on the cautious side. I rode it to a nearby BMW dealership, and I'll let them fix it on the warranty.

    Because of this, I did learn that I need to start packing a better set of tools around. I'm sure there's a post on suggested tools to carry....
    #7
  8. _cy_

    _cy_ Long timer

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    bummer .. failure on a brand new bike :cry
    #8
  9. JRWooden

    JRWooden Long timer

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    How much preload did you have dialed in to rear shock?
    #9
  10. basketcase

    basketcase lifelong reject fixer

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    A "tankslapper" oscillation of the handlebars is usually a loose steering head bearing issue.

    On a bike that new I expect you are good to ride home without fear. But some bikes just don't take to hands off riding, so I wouldn't tempt fate by trying it every five miles.
    #10
  11. Tor

    Tor Imported Norwegian Viking

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    What kind of tires do you have up front?
    #11
  12. Loutre

    Loutre Cosmopolitan Adv

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    I read scorpion trail :deal
    #12
  13. _cy_

    _cy_ Long timer

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    update ... what caused your problems?
    #13
  14. KSUperDuty

    KSUperDuty Adventurer

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    They must actually ride at the dealership where I dropped it off. They are closed on Mondays, so I won't know anything until tomorrow. I should have ridden it home....
    #14
  15. KSUperDuty

    KSUperDuty Adventurer

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    Dealership called. They confirmed the bar shake. They also said they tightened up the steering bearings which minimized the shake, but it did not eliminate it entirely. Apparently they rode their demo F800 and it has a similar shake at 50 mph. The service advisor said that it is just a characterization of the bike because of the rake angle. OK? Sound like a reasonable explanation?
    #15
  16. itsatdm

    itsatdm Long timer

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    That is BS. If tightening the bearings caused less shake, my guess is replacing the bearings would do away with it.
    #16
  17. PNWRR

    PNWRR not fragile

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    [​IMG]

    :freaky
    #17
  18. sorebutt

    sorebutt Long timer

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    It sounds like bullshit to me. They just don't want to take the time to figure out what it is. You should have asked them if that was a common practice of BMW to put out bikes that shake at 50 mph and what other things are wrong with their bikes that they put out there. Tell them you want to talk to the factory rep. to see why they put out bikes with major problems.
    #18
  19. Schai

    Schai Adventurer

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    If it really is handlebar shake on a paved road, it really is wrong. You could do a couple of test rides with different preload settings on the rear shock. That will address any "rake" considerations. If adjusting shock preload doesn't cure it, there is something wrong and risky that needs to be corrected.

    Good luck,

    Steve
    #19
  20. too old for dirt

    too old for dirt Been here awhile

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    +1 on that is BS. You should not have head shake on a paved road at 50 mph. Get you manual out and check the rear shock settings. The factory settings are set for a 175 lb. person. Adjust for the weight difference and add a little more pre load and see if that does not solve the problem.:wink:
    #20