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 Steering shimmy question

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DickO
Bernardo
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PostSubject: Steering shimmy question   Steering shimmy question I_icon_minitimeThu May 14, 2009 11:05 pm

First the facts:

Bought my '08 new last week. Has 600 miles on it now. I weight 225, so I pumped up the rear tire an extra 3 pounds per the owner's manual and added a click of preload.

I noticed a slightly steering wobble today. I have no idea if it's been there since new because hitherto I've kept a death grip on the handlebars.

As I decelerate with the throttle closed the steering shimmies back and forth a bit, beginning at about 35 mph indicated and going about somewhere between 25 and 30.

Even resting my hands on the grips makes it go away, so it's definitely not "violent." There is no shimmy under power. Just with closed-throttle. None at higher speeds, either.

What's up with that? Normal? It doesn't seem like the sort of thing that would be "normal" to me, but I don't know from motorcycles.
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PostSubject: Re: Steering shimmy question   Steering shimmy question I_icon_minitimeFri May 15, 2009 2:04 am

I've read a few online things that suggest such a deceleration shimmy is "normal for heavy bikes." Whatever "heavy" means.
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PostSubject: Re: Steering shimmy question   Steering shimmy question I_icon_minitimeSat May 16, 2009 9:21 am

The shimmy that you are feeling is probably normal. Was anything done recently like changing the front tire. If it's only slight, the decel.. should not be a problem.
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PostSubject: Re: Steering shimmy question   Steering shimmy question I_icon_minitimeSat May 16, 2009 11:48 am

Bone stock. Front tire has 29 psi as recommended.

It goes away if I rest my hands on the grips. I can't feel it through the steering.

It doesn't seem to do it if I'm going downhill, either. Weird.
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Bernardo
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PostSubject: shimmy / wobble fixes   Steering shimmy question I_icon_minitimeSat May 16, 2009 3:45 pm

mickey wrote:
First the facts:

Bought my '08 new last week. Has 600 miles on it now. I weight 225, so I pumped up the rear tire an extra 3 pounds per the owner's manual and added a click of preload.

I noticed a slightly steering wobble today. I have no idea if it's been there since new because hitherto I've kept a death grip on the handlebars.

As I decelerate with the throttle closed the steering shimmies back and forth a bit, beginning at about 35 mph indicated and going about somewhere between 25 and 30.

Even resting my hands on the grips makes it go away, so it's definitely not "violent." There is no shimmy under power. Just with closed-throttle. None at higher speeds, either.

What's up with that? Normal? It doesn't seem like the sort of thing that would be "normal" to me, but I don't know from motorcycles.


Hi Mickey,

My Wing does similar and I understand it can be a normal issue for most bikes/scoots.

If you check out this thread, I've detailed some more info, and what I've doen to make it better.

https://www.silverwing600.com/silver-wing-topics-f3/wobble-steering-t456.htm#3588

after heavier bar ends, and new wheel bearing the shimmy is much improved, you still notice a hint of it, (especially with just one had on the handlebars) but not that it is a problem.

Bernardo
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PostSubject: Re: Steering shimmy question   Steering shimmy question I_icon_minitimeSat May 16, 2009 11:32 pm

Sounds like it's probably normal, then. It's certainly not bothering me. I just wanted to make sure my wheel wasn't going to fall off or something.
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DickO
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PostSubject: Re: Steering shimmy question   Steering shimmy question I_icon_minitimeSun May 17, 2009 12:34 am

I will apologize in advance; I just don't understand 'any' of the wobbling, shimmying, etc, being normal. As near as I can tell, my used '05 is about as stock as it can be, as that is how I received it. Of course I haven't added or subtracted any of the basic components nor do I run any tire pressures other than 'recommended'. I just have never felt any of the aforementioned maladies on my SWing at all. I understand about various geometries but still fail to see how it could be something other than a worn joint somewhere (steering head, wheel bearings, etc) or maybe a bad tire. Anyway, just my two one-hundredths of a dollar on this subject.
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tvpRich
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PostSubject: Re: Steering shimmy question   Steering shimmy question I_icon_minitimeTue Aug 18, 2009 1:15 am

This might be a strange concept, but, could the rider weight and seating position/angle/lean be an issue on frame stress, thus introduce vibrations?
JMHO
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MikeO
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PostSubject: Re: Steering shimmy question   Steering shimmy question I_icon_minitimeTue Aug 18, 2009 6:21 am

My X9 has its little quirks, some shared with others, some not.

I'm sure it's the same for any decent maxi and I'm also sure that a relaxed rider brings out the best in the bike.
Elsewhere have been endless discussions about how big maxis handle in strong cross-winds and the conclusion always seems to be 'ride with soft hands' (a cricketting expression!) because the inherent stability of a big maxi will let it look after itself if the rider guides it rather than trying to 'control' it - sounds daft but is quite logical, especially to a horse rider - guide the horse but let it get itself and you over the fences.

What goes for strong cross-winds holds true at all times, by and large....at least that's what I've found and I get off at the end of the ride un-tense!

Other riders may think differently - thank goodness for variety and a wealth of shared experience.
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PostSubject: Re: Steering shimmy question   Steering shimmy question I_icon_minitimeWed Aug 19, 2009 1:21 pm

I have seen this head shake first hand with brand new front tire on an 85 Goldwing,

take it to a shop, have the tire spun off the bike on a horizontal spindle, where u can observe it is out of round. Watch \the shadow on the wall behind it.

On used sport bikes,, happens on deceleration all the time, 100 % common to used bike owners. Ok for first few thousand miles,, then head shake.
One way to fix is over tighten a hair,,, a little bit, the steering head.

I've owned a lot of bikes,, new ones ,, it is an out of round front tire on yours.

Should be warranted.. by mfr.
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exavid
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PostSubject: Re: Steering shimmy question   Steering shimmy question I_icon_minitimeWed Aug 19, 2009 3:32 pm

Low speed decelerating headshake when riding 'no hands' is a pretty common phenomena. I've owned many Goldwings including the 1500 I now have and experience the same thing in roughly the same speed range. I've had the shake in just about all the faired Goldwings I've owned. The two main causes seem to be tires or head bearings. I don't believe in over tightening head bearings because any excessive drag on the steering will cause the bike to wander and require constant correction. On the Goldwing the shake goes away with a new tire and then slowly returns after around 4000-5000 miles using Dunlop E3s. Other brand tires seem to do much the same. The shake isn't dangerous, usually a couple fingers on one grip will be enough to damp it out. There's been a lot of discussion on the Steve Saunders Goldwing forum and others about the shake and the conclusions are pretty much as stated above. Cupped tires will enhance the shake a bit, you can usually tell when tires become cupped (also known as scalloped) because you'll hear a buzz when the bike's leaned in a turn. At 600 miles cupping shouldn't be an issue nor should worn tires. My SW has about 5000 miles with noticeable cupping on the rear tire and does have a bit of free hand 30mph shake. I'm pretty used to it after over 100,000 miles on Goldwings and don't worry about it. It's high speed wobble that's dangerous because of the greater energy in the oscillations but I haven't seen a trace of it in the SW. I've gone free hand in the 80-100mph range and even slapped the grips to see if there's any tendency to wobble and haven't seen any sign of higher speed wobble. I wouldn't worry about it.
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PostSubject: Re: Steering shimmy question   Steering shimmy question I_icon_minitimeWed Aug 19, 2009 3:58 pm

AGAIN,, you have a new scooter, no way should there be head shake at 600 miles.

Take it to the dealer, ask them to check it, something is wrong w that front tire or
the head bearings set up..

My 07 SW w 7900 miles and original front tire can be ridden hands off. NO head shake..

I bet your scooter needs a new tire.. A ROUND tire.

It is a liability issue for the dealer, the tire Mfr, and Honda.

MY 2 cents again! But it is your neck riding it like that.
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PostSubject: Re: Steering shimmy question   Steering shimmy question I_icon_minitimeTue Sep 22, 2009 11:40 am

Hi Mickey, I have only 345 miles on my Swing and yesterday I noticed a WOBBLE in my handle bars. It was a side to side shaking. I put the scooter on a motorcycle stand today and checked out the front end. I checked the bearings and they seem good wheel is tight. I then checked the wheel and tires and found nothing. When I turned the wheel I noticed that the break was grabbing that is not good I also noticed alot of break power on the wheels. I took a cloth towel and cleaned the break rotors till the rotor show no more dirt on the towl...There was much more dirt then I expected. I spin the wheel again and the drag was gone. I have not tried it yet on the road because it is raining today. Tomorrow first thing I will take it out and give it a run. If this does not take care of the wobble then I will be taking the scooter to the dealer. I really have a feeling that the problem on my scooter is the breaks grabbing because of dirt. I will update you tomorrow.
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DaveR
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PostSubject: Re: Steering shimmy question   Steering shimmy question I_icon_minitimeTue Sep 22, 2009 6:34 pm

This is Old Dave in Western Nebraska...
For what it's worth, I would venture to say all "Silverwings" will have a wobble hands off at about 30mph. No one can explain it it is just one of the traits of this particular machine. In fact I don't know of any motor cycle that will not have a wobble hands off at some particular speed. They are all different but it is nothing to get excited over and you will "not" fix it I don't care what you do. Just ask other riders that have ridden lots of motor cycles and I think you will get this answer. My 2005 has a little wobble at 30 but that is just the way it is. I could spend lots of $ and will never correct the problem. I just need to be aware of it and know it is there.....
But, like I said, "all of them will do it at some speed."
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PostSubject: Re: Steering shimmy question   Steering shimmy question I_icon_minitimeWed Sep 23, 2009 11:29 am

I test rode my Swing this morning after going over the complete front end, I believe cleaning the brake rotors did the trick. I had no wobble in the handle bars I put about 40 miles on it today, and the scooter seemed to run smoother. It does not cost anything to take a rag over the front rotor and get the brake dust off. My back rotor was not bad and had very little dirt on the rotor. I also cleaned the dust off the wheels.. This worked for me I hope it works for you guys.
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