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The fun begins! My bike has a slight front end wobble at speeds of 30+ that tends to come and go. In the search for possible causes, I have found that a variety of factors can cause the issue. Head bearings, wheel bearings, tires, swing arm bearings, worn forks, hanging brakes and a couple of other things that I can't name off of the top of my head are items that may be of interest.



Front End - Head, forks and wheel

The head bearings on my bike are toast. There is a noticeable detent when the wheel is close to straight (wheel off the ground). The forks do not feel that there is any play in them. The front and rear tire are about seven months old with about two hundred miles on them (doesn't necessarily mean they aren't at fault though). The front wheel bearings seem to be silky smooth without any detectable play, and the front wheel looks to be straight (although I haven't put a dial indicator on it to verify).



Front Brakes

The front brake drags real bad. The brake fluid has been flushed from the system and replaced. That helped to reduce the brake dragging issue a slight bit, but it is still beyond excessive. The mounting bolts are corrosion free, and the caliper slides easily on the mount. In reading, it looks like corrosion around the piston seal and mounting bolts are the leading culprits. The return hole in the master cylinder also has been noted as something to look into as well.





Thoughts, opinions and questions... First, am I overlooking anything?



The head bearings will require the front end to be taken apart. What are the recommended replacement bearings (brand, type, source, etc.)? Should I rebuild the forks while it is apart? What about replacing wheel bearings? Is there anything else that should be checked and/or replaced while I have the front end off?



The front brake caliper needs a rebuild. Not a big deal there. Probably will go ahead and rebuild the master cylinder at the same time. What about replacing the rubber brake line? Probably would be wise, but with what type (rubber or braided stainless)? Any other things to add to the list regarding the brakes?



Sorry for all of the questions. There aren't meant to all be answered as much as to communicate my train of thought. It would be nice to have the parts ordered and on hand before jumping into the middle of it.



Thanks for the help!
 

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The fun begins! My bike has a slight front end wobble at speeds of 30+ that tends to come and go. In the search for possible causes, I have found that a variety of factors can cause the issue. Head bearings, wheel bearings, tires, swing arm bearings, worn forks, hanging brakes and a couple of other things that I can't name off of the top of my head are items that may be of interest.



Front End - Head, forks and wheel

The head bearings on my bike are toast. There is a noticeable detent when the wheel is close to straight (wheel off the ground). The forks do not feel that there is any play in them. The front and rear tire are about seven months old with about two hundred miles on them (doesn't necessarily mean they aren't at fault though). The front wheel bearings seem to be silky smooth without any detectable play, and the front wheel looks to be straight (although I haven't put a dial indicator on it to verify).



Front Brakes

The front brake drags real bad. The brake fluid has been flushed from the system and replaced. That helped to reduce the brake dragging issue a slight bit, but it is still beyond excessive. The mounting bolts are corrosion free, and the caliper slides easily on the mount. In reading, it looks like corrosion around the piston seal and mounting bolts are the leading culprits. The return hole in the master cylinder also has been noted as something to look into as well.





Thoughts, opinions and questions... First, am I overlooking anything?



The head bearings will require the front end to be taken apart. What are the recommended replacement bearings (brand, type, source, etc.)? Should I rebuild the forks while it is apart? What about replacing wheel bearings? Is there anything else that should be checked and/or replaced while I have the front end off?



The front brake caliper needs a rebuild. Not a big deal there. Probably will go ahead and rebuild the master cylinder at the same time. What about replacing the rubber brake line? Probably would be wise, but with what type (rubber or braided stainless)? Any other things to add to the list regarding the brakes?



Sorry for all of the questions. There aren't meant to all be answered as much as to communicate my train of thought. It would be nice to have the parts ordered and on hand before jumping into the middle of it.



Thanks for the help!
Front end wobble is caused by bad head bearings 90% of the time.



While you have the front end apart, I highly recommend that you disassemble your forks, clean the internal parts, replace the fluids and seals. The first time will probably take you a day. Later it can be done is a couple of hours.



The brakes dragging are a dirty master cylinder 95% of the time. Do rebuild the calipers at the same time so everything works better. Again, the first time will probably take a day and later 2-3 hours.



I recommend AllsBalls tapered steering head bearings, but any tapered head bearing are better than ball bearings.



I know Rick will chime in and recommend rubber hoses, but 90% of us will recommend braided stainless steel lines.



Tires rarely cause wheel wobble, but if they are badly cupped they can cause a vibration.
 

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Davids info and advise, above, is spot on.



Tapered roller bearings are the preferred stearing stem replacement, vs the old loose ball bearings.



If your wheel bearings have = or > 10 K miles, or unknown miles to you, replace them- you'll be glad you did. Not a hard job.



Stainless, braided replacement brake lines will give you a better "feel' and more responsiveness on your front brakes. A link to the known reliable supplier is in the quik reference info.



While doing the rear wheel bearing, give thought to replacing the rear brake shoes and spring (economical) Older shoes "glaze" over and do not have the stopping power of renewed shoes.



All these jobs are economical for the DIYer, just be methodical. Post us if you need more info. sam
 

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Good Luck with your rebuild project !



I'm the "Rick" David was talking about and let me make one thing VERY CLEAR:



I have been very careful about how I word my posts when we talk about rubber vs SS brake lines and I have NEVER "recommended" rubber vs SS or SS vs Rubber. I've just made it clear that I PREFER the the FEEL of the rubber better....that's ALL I've ever said but I will NOT "recommend" either one either way. I've made it clear that there's nothing wrong with either one....get whatever one YOU "prefer" and YOU feel the most comfortable with !!



Please don't put words in my mouth, thank you and have a great Sunday !!
 

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Good Luck with your rebuild project !



I'm the "Rick" David was talking about and let me make one thing VERY CLEAR:



I have been very careful about how I word my posts when we talk about rubber vs SS brake lines and I have NEVER "recommended" rubber vs SS or SS vs Rubber. I've just made it clear that I PREFER the the FEEL of the rubber better....that's ALL I've ever said but I will NOT "recommend" either one either way. I've made it clear that there's nothing wrong with either one....get whatever one YOU "prefer" and YOU feel the most comfortable with !!



Please don't put words in my mouth, thank you and have a great Sunday !!
Well now, if stating your feelings isn't a recommendation, what is!?!?
I didn't put the words in your mouth ... you said what you prefer and I said what I prefer.
I respect your opinion, I just prefer to recommend something else! ;-) (Whatever happened to the wink face???)



Other than that with 8-12 inches of snow with blowing winds the only good thing today will be the Daytona 500.
 

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Yep no big deal either way.



I guess the right way to word it would be: "If you like a firmer, more direct, feel of the lever when braking and the looks of the SS then get SS. If you like a lever with a little more "give and feel" to it and know how to polish up banjos then use the rubber" !




By the way we've had a whole week now of riding weather.....it's almost 70 degrees here today and all that snow we got 2 1/2 weeks ago from the blizzard is long gone.
 

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By the way we've had a whole week now of riding weather.....it's almost 70 degrees here today and all that snow we got 2 1/2 weeks ago from the blizzard is long gone.
Rick,



You know you are being really nasty! I already had the snow blower out today for about 6 inches of snow. As I look out the window I have at least that much more to do in the morning. All the local schools and some of the businesses are already closed.



If we get the winds they are talking about I will be real busy tomorrow!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for the info and opinions! I have decided that since I will have the front end apart, I may as well freshen everything up. The efforts will be put on the front end for now, and we'll see if that cures the wobble (I'm hoping it does). I will get the parts for the forks, brakes (both ends & line), wheel bearings, and the tapered head bearings ordered tomorrow. Any vendors to stay away from?



Regarding the fork rebuild, the manual calls for ATF but I have seen in looking through the archives that the 20W fork oil is a better solution. What is the preferred fork oil for this bike? Probably a question that will start a riot!
The other question is regarding fork alignment. In the shop manual I have, nothing is mentioned. Is this a potential "gotcha" when putting it all back together and if so, what is a good method?



By the way we've had a whole week now of riding weather.....it's almost 70 degrees here today and all that snow we got 2 1/2 weeks ago from the blizzard is long gone.


The weather here has been almost perfect. The only thing we are battling is wind; it has been blowing 15-20 for the past week. Temps have been in the 70's with lows in the upper 50's. A far cry from a couple of weeks ago!



You know you are being really nasty! I already had the snow blower out today for about 6 inches of snow. As I look out the window I have at least that much more to do in the morning. All the local schools and some of the businesses are already closed.



If we get the winds they are talking about I will be real busy tomorrow!


David, not trying to rub salt in a wound.
Hate to hear that winter has you boxed up. Hang in there, spring is just around the corner!
 

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David, not trying to rub salt in a wound.
Hate to hear that winter has you boxed up. Hang in there, spring is just around the corner!
Well, this morning it took 4 hours to do what I normally do in 1 hour. Most of it was about 12 inches deep. I no more than finished the sidewalks and driveway entrances and the plow went by and it flew over the terrace and refilled the sidewalk and driveway entrances with packed snow.



What a pain in the A**



Oh, yeah, we are supposed to get 4 more inches tonight!
 

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Well, this morning it took 4 hours to do what I normally do in 1 hour. Most of it was about 12 inches deep. I no more than finished the sidewalks and driveway entrances and the plow went by and it flew over the terrace and refilled the sidewalk and driveway entrances with packed snow.



What a pain in the A**



Oh, yeah, we are supposed to get 4 more inches tonight!




The first part was sounding like a romance novel. Maybe tomorrow will be better.
 
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