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Sportster Motorcycle Suspension, Frame, Forks, Handlebars, Fuel Tank, Oil Tank, Fenders Discuss Sportster Motorcycle Suspension, Frame, Forks, Handlebars, Fuel Tank, Oil Tank, Fenders problems, advice, and/or how tos.

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  #1  
Old 12th August 2009
DC in PHX DC in PHX is offline
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Default At My Wits End...Wild Random Instability Continues

Hi Guys,

I hate to say it, but I may have to have the dealer pick up my Sporty and have a professional diagnosis and repair.

Last week I described my problem here:http://www.xlforum.net/vbportal/foru...d.php?t=574105

When I pulled the rear wheel off, the retaining ring for the caliper piston boot fell out http://www.xlforum.net/vbportal/foru...d.php?t=574878

After taking the rear wheel off, one bearing seemed a tiny bit stiff, so I had new bearings pressed in (80K on those bearings). So I have new bearings and seals on the back wheel.

Since the retaining ring is not sold seperately, I had to buy the caliper rebuild kit. So, I rebuilt the caliper since I had to buy the parts anyway. The rear pads had a lot of meat left on them, so I did not change those. I made sure to scotch-brite the rotor too.

I reassembled everything very carefully, made sure the rear alignment is right, belt tension within spec, everything torqued right, etc.

Put it all back together. Rode it around the neighborhood at low speed for a half an hour or so. Everything was fine. Took it out on the road to 50 MPH, everything still fine. Took my hands off the bars at 50, the bike was nice and stable, pulled just a tiny bit to the left though. Did a few "panic" stops, everything seemes fine.

So I figue, all is good.

Took the bike out again, and then the bike got all out of contol again right after I made a left turn and accelerated to 40MPH. I almost had a head-on with a car! I had to muscle the handlebars at 10 MPH just to keep in some sort of control. Luckily I was able to take side streets home. It feels just like a flat tire, that is the best I can describe.

Rant over

I guess, for the first time since I joined this forum, I will have to have the dealer look at my Sporty

Ideas???

Thanks!

DC
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  #2  
Old 12th August 2009
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linkin5 linkin5 is offline
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Maybe just maybe the problem is in the front and not the rear, I don't have a clue but keep an open mind about it.
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Old 12th August 2009
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Are the adjusters for the rear wheel set properly? if one is forward of the other (in this case, making the rear wheel point to the right-forwards) it would shove your bike to the left...i was only assume the problem is in the back because you didnt touch the front...double check? are the bearings pressed in straight?
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  #4  
Old 12th August 2009
DC in PHX DC in PHX is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by linkin5 View Post
Maybe just maybe the problem is in the front and not the rear, I don't have a clue but keep an open mind about it.
Good point, it could be my perception is wrong.

DC
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Old 12th August 2009
DC in PHX DC in PHX is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K3vl4r View Post
Are the adjusters for the rear wheel set properly? if one is forward of the other (in this case, making the rear wheel point to the right-forwards) it would shove your bike to the left...i was only assume the problem is in the back because you didnt touch the front...double check? are the bearings pressed in straight?
I am pretty sure the adjusters are right, at least by using the method described in the manual for alignment. There could be a slight incorrect adjustment due to using the home-made alignment tool.

As far as the bearings being pressed in right, I really don't know. When I put it back together, I did not notice anything wrong (like a spacer being crooked on the axle).

Thanks

DC
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Old 12th August 2009
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Do you have a set of calipers to measure the distances on each side? or at least a ruler to see if they are close? if they are really close by ruler, i cant image it would pull that hard to one side...

When you did the 1st test ride, were you ginger and nice to it, or did you go WOT a few times? Did you do a WOT on the second run after the left turn and thats when it went wonky? If the adjust was loose or came loose, possibly the WOT yanked on an adjuster?

just tossing stuff out....
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  #7  
Old 12th August 2009
DC in PHX DC in PHX is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K3vl4r View Post
Do you have a set of calipers to measure the distances on each side? or at least a ruler to see if they are close? if they are really close by ruler, i cant image it would pull that hard to one side...

When you did the 1st test ride, were you ginger and nice to it, or did you go WOT a few times? Did you do a WOT on the second run after the left turn and thats when it went wonky? If the adjust was loose or came loose, possibly the WOT yanked on an adjuster?
just tossing stuff out....
Yup, I was nice and easy on it, till it went wild. I did not go WOT, but I did open it up some...

Gonna check alignment again and post results.

Feel free to keep tossing!!

TNX

DC
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  #8  
Old 12th August 2009
DC in PHX DC in PHX is offline
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[QUOTE=K3vl4r;2103469]Do you have a set of calipers to measure the distances on each side? or at least a ruler to see if they are close? if they are really close by ruler, i cant image it would pull that hard to one side...

Well, using a steel ruler, they are within 2 mm of each other...

I am beginning to think front end...

Thnaks

DC

Last edited by DC in PHX; 12th August 2009 at 20:18..
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  #9  
Old 12th August 2009
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If your axle was adjusted improperly (crooked), you should be hearing a weird noise from the belt trying to walk its way off the pulley. Don't get too carried away with the calipers either, as K3vl4r hinted at, if you're dead on using a ruler, it shouldn't be pulling like that.

What I'm starting to wonder is if the problem might be with your swingarm pivot (where it attaches to the frame). If something got bent/tweaked/broken in that area, it could be causing some of you problems.
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Old 12th August 2009
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I was just going to say that when my front forks were problematic, I originally thought it was my back tire slipping. For me, it was a busted fork seal with most of the oil gone.
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