Steering stabilizer

Discussion in 'Parallel Universe' started by Moab, Aug 3, 2010.

  1. Moab

    Moab Been here awhile

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    At the local parts shop today talking about steering dampener and the huge expense.... He suggested a stabilizer.

    Never having either I thought I'd ask the group what you thought

    Well? :wink:
    #1
  2. johngil

    johngil Reseda, CA

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    You probably don't need one.
    #2
  3. Brawg65

    Brawg65 No Style points

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    I guess "need" is based on many variables. However, from my personal experience the Steering stabilizer is the most essential piece on an offroad machine. I think of it like this, your bike is two pieces jointed at the steering stem. My .02 cents is that the stabilizer makes the two pieces become more like one. From this you gain the benefit of inertia of the whole, etc.

    In the real world of riding, the stabilizer will prevent (to some extent) the random kick of the front wheel out from under you. In a similiar event of a foreign object trying to kick your front end, the stabilizer will prevent the bars from kicking out of your hands. Which, i'm sure we've all had the ole bars buck while heavy on them and end up with your arms through the bark busters...typical broken wrist and/or radius/ulna bones.

    I think the stabilizer is a golden invention and belongs on every motorcycle street, dirt, harley, etc!

    "dont leave home without it"
    #3
  4. RAD800

    RAD800 Been here awhile

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    I've considerd one a few times, but i just keep telling myself i have 20/20 vision and good reflexes so i don't need one.

    Ignorance is bliss.:rofl
    #4
  5. Moab

    Moab Been here awhile

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    well I was sold on the idea of keeping the front wheel more stable in offroad conditions AND at high speeds with my knobbies :) but do you see the stabilizer as good as a dampener?
    #5
  6. nevermind

    nevermind wow. just wow.

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    duh?

    stabilizer and damper are same-same, pizza-pizza... If you have the dough, get a damper. Scotts. It has both a high speed, always on circuit and an adjustable low speed circuit. Very nice shiny bits...
    #6
  7. huckleberry

    huckleberry BACK ROAD BOMBER

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    i'd spent money on suspension first then see if you still think you need 1
    #7
  8. nevermind

    nevermind wow. just wow.

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    duh?
    How do you find out you need one? After you hit that root or rock that throws your wheel to the side and launches you over the bars? :evil IMHO, a person has a limited amount of attention when riding a bike. How much of that attention can you focus elsewhere if you run a good damper?
    #8
  9. RAD800

    RAD800 Been here awhile

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    I see it this way.
    Ive ridden the same bike (enduro bike) back to back with mine, mine has $600 worth of suspension parts and is set up well with no stabiliser. The other has an $800 stabiliser and no susp work. Mine climbs ruts better and absorbs front wheel deflection as well or better, or it just eliminated the need for it in most cases and is way better overall and actually takes big hits.
    The 800 is a diffrent kettle of fish though, the zocci 45 internals and setting up the rear is going to be better and i think there would be more to gain from putting the money towards it, if you can have one or the other.

    Im not saying they are a waste, i think they are great but there are other things you can do that are going to make you more confident and faster off road IMO.
    #9
  10. Bartron

    Bartron 'Tenacious B' the Bike Punisher

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    I'm running a Scotts. I see it as fatigue management and really only expect benefit when the trail is sloppy, sand is deep, gravel is deeper and baby-heads abound. Otherwise, you probably won't see much benefit. That being said, if you're fighting with the terrain all day, having a bit of help sure helps you stay fresher - and safer.

    On flat ground there's little benefit. The equation changes when things get uneven and there is a lot of torque on the wheel from rocks/roots/etcetera. I can't remember the physics of it all that well, but it's all about trail/rake and how it changes in relation to where the wheel is making contact with an object. If it's making contact anywhere else but 6 o'clock (if you imagine the wheel to be a clock face) there will be extra force trying to deflect the wheel. You can manage this without a damper - but it wears on ya.

    I've changed the front end suspension (hyperpro) and it made a huge difference to the way the front tracks. The Scotts just adds that little bit more. Perhaps with a $2,000 upgrade to the front, instead of a $200 upgrade, it would no longer be significant but I doubt it. Suspension works best when the force vector applied to the wheel is in the same plane as the suspension (up and down), for hits where the wheel has to roll over anything large, there will be tendency for the wheel to turn as the trail and rake are changed for that moment and while the suspension reacts.

    In the end, it's just my opinion and I'm no ADV Titan, but if you're considering the cost amortization of a Scotts, you can always mount it on another bike with a relatively inexpensive mount.
    #10
  11. huckleberry

    huckleberry BACK ROAD BOMBER

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    the same amt. you would have if you would have made your suspension work well and rode over that rock!:lol3 A steering damper is not a cure for poor suspension, or for that matter poorly adjusted suspension

    #11
  12. CJL00

    CJL00 Who said top boxes are useless?

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    The groups I ride with range from my old mates with full on sports bikes to work mates with DRZ400's on pretty shitty roads.

    For the first 4,000 k's my real problems were with badly rutted steep tracks and large loose rocks. On several occasions I was extremely close to dropping the load big time but lots of good luck and long legs prevailed. The rest of the trips on those roads were sitting with legs out and lots of riding the clutch.

    I fitted the Rallye-Moto steering damper and cannot believe the difference, it is indescribable. Well worth the money. A few of the hard core dirt riders are amazed when they try the bike on how firmly plated the front is, one even claims you could not loose the front end. I am sure if you tried you could and am not looking for a protracted discussion on this comment, simply repeating what was said.

    This is all without changing the standard suspension. I have read plenty about how bad it is supposed to be but i suppose it all depends on how hard you ride.

    i do know that at that on the last ride on my TKC80, after 9,000km's, through lots of red clay slime, the back was going everywhere but the front went where ever pointed regardless of what it hit without one deflection.

    If you are an average rider simply out for some fun and not trying to race or go like some legend, a steering damper is money well spent.
    #12
  13. OlyRider

    OlyRider Long timer

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    OK, agreeing that a stabilizer is a "good thing" (I mounted the Scotts on my 800GS last weekend), what are the proper settings?

    On the high-speed - do you have it set for "road" or "dirt"?

    For low-speed - what's your basic road setting? I've set mine to minus 12 (from full-on) and can turn it clockwise to minus eight - but I cant go any further without removing the black plastic needle. (It hits the handlebars at that point.)

    Yesterday, I rode the bike on I-5 for 150 miles, and thought I might have the stabilizer cranked too much at minus 12. I was getting some front-end wobble that I didn't have before. The high-speed setting is currently "dirt".
    #13
  14. CJL00

    CJL00 Who said top boxes are useless?

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    I have mine set on the D-6 setting (refer to Ralle-Moto's site, http://www.rallemoto.com/products/steering_dampeners.php, about their settings, the range is from 1 to 8 with 8 being the most resistance). I fiddled a lot when I first fitted it but have found this to be fine for road and dirt and now never touch it.

    I fitted the unit myself in a couple of hours and the bit they refer to of filing a plastic cowl was not needed to be done. Plastic bends with enough pressure....

    Hope this helps.
    #14
  15. Dan Alexander

    Dan Alexander still alive and well

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    I was on the Trans Lab on a KTM which already has good suspension. I was going along in the gravel at 80kmph and was wobbly etc. till I remembered the Scott's.

    Cranked it up and it was a revelation ... 'I'm a freight train and nothing can stop me' was running through my head as I booted up to 140 and cruised along effortlessly. On single track it isn't as noticeable .

    Should have had one on the GS last year in Northern Quebec.

    Best $$ spent on that bike IMHO
    #15
  16. nevermind

    nevermind wow. just wow.

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    duh?

    I talked to Scotts on Friday. I told them what kind of bike I had and where I was riding it. They gave me settings and told me why. As soon as I get a chance, I'll go try 'em out! I'm no expert, so my suggestion to you would be to call them and get it straight from the horses mouth!
    #16
  17. Scotts Performance

    Scotts Performance Adventurer

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    You guys can always feel free to call us or email us and we can give you some good starting set up adjustments to get you close to where you need to be. We can not tell some one an end all adjustment setting as there are to many variables... tires, terrain, personal preference, size of rider. A 250 lb muscleman is going to run the damper looser than 120lb pound string bean.
    Thanks-
    Eric
    #17
  18. stin987

    stin987 R1200GSA

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    I have had my f800gs for 1 week now. I take interstate to work and ride at speeds between 60-85 mph. I have noticed that between the wind, 21" wheel and 9" travel front fork that the steering seems to wobble back and forth a bit. Its not the it scares me, it just makes the ride less enjoyable b/c I feel like I have to hold the bars to keep them steady.

    Here is the question. If I get a stabilizer will it keep the bars for moving so much? My goal is to have the ability to ride with one hand comfortably at about 80mph as if I was riding a sport bike.

    Check out gpr's new stabilizer for the f800gs
    [​IMG]
    #18
  19. rockinrog

    rockinrog Long timer

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    So there is the gpr for $550
    Rally Moto $795
    Scotts $569

    I assume they are all supposed to do the same thing right? Does the RM do it better that it is 795?
    #19
  20. Scotts Performance

    Scotts Performance Adventurer

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    Stin-
    A damper will definately take the wobble out. On freeways and high speed stretches like that you would run the damper tighter so you do not have to have the death grip on the bars to hold it straight. When you get offroad, or garage or parking lot where you have to manuever the bars around to turn the bike you can loosen up the damper so you do not have to fight it to turn the bars. On a Scotts unit, if you have the damper loose so you can turn the bars easier, and you hit something like a pothole or anything that will jerk the front end away, our Hi Speed adjustment will eliminate the sudden impact... it kind of acts like a back up to the Low Speed adjustment that regualtes overall stiffness.
    Thanks-
    Eric
    #20