Author Topic: Front end feels like riding on gravel  (Read 770 times)

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Offline Patrick

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Front end feels like riding on gravel
« on: June 05, 2019, 04:31:37 am »
Just started feeling a funny vibration in the handlebars tonight.  Pulled over and pulled a rock out of the tread, and thought problem solved.  Got back on the highway and it still felt like I was riding on gravel.  A couple minutes later, I thought I heard something bumping around somewhere in the front end.  Fairing maybe?  Fender?  Pulled over again.  Everything looked OK and nothing felt loose.  Rinse and repeat.  Rinse and repeat.  Each time I got back on the highway, I drove a little slower than the time before.  Kept listening to something occasionally rattle around the front end.  Twice it felt and sounded like something got kicked up inside the fender and bounced its way out as I was taking an easy left turn.

Took me an hour to ride about 12 miles and I got so worried it was gonna lock up and throw me, I left it in a shopping center parking lot a mile from home.

2005 C10 with 66K miles. 
Tires look fine with 6K miles on front Metzler RoadTec Z8 and rear Shinko 777. (Very conservative rider, so I'm easy on brakes and tires.)
New EBC Sintered brake pads rear at 56K and front at 60K. (Previous pads were installed at 42K front and rear)
Don’t feel any wobble in the front wheel.
Fender seems solid.  Fender extender feels solid. Rotors feel smooth. Checked the fairing.  Checked the tip over bars.  Checked the trailer hitch.  Checked the forks.  Checked the mufflers.
Haven’t found anything loose.

I keep seeing posts about wheel bearings going bad, but does that explain the “something got kicked up inside the fender and bounced its way out”?  Do I dare ride it that last mile home?
Pat Morganson COG #10545
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Offline RS

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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #1 on: June 05, 2019, 09:35:00 am »
It sounds familiar. Check the two bolts that hold the fairing/ headlight to the frame. They are nut and bolted to the front tube of the frame where the triple tree connects. I believe it’s common to loosen.
Richard

Offline Patrick

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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2019, 01:42:44 pm »
I noticed this morning that I put this in the wrong section.  Not sure how I did that.  I don't see how to move the thread.  Do I need to create a new one on the C10 section?
Pat Morganson COG #10545
Ridgefield, WA

2005 Concours:  Nov '11 - Present
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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2019, 01:51:19 pm »
A moderator can move it. Just click the "Report to moderator" button on the right side of a post to get their attention and ask them to move it.
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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2019, 02:55:41 pm »
When you get home, remove the calipers and rotate the wheel.
This will help you isolate the problem.

Ride safe, Ted
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Offline batboy

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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #5 on: June 05, 2019, 03:57:07 pm »
Definitely check wheel bearings and other things, but if you find nothing mechanical, look to those tires (with 6k miles) for broken belts or unusual wear.
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Offline Daytona_Mike

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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #6 on: June 05, 2019, 04:32:50 pm »
Could this be that 'Marble Dance' that I have occasionally heard about on C10's?
 I too would suspect the front wheel bearings. 66k miles sounds about right when they go.   If this is the Marble Dance issue was that  loose swing arm bearings? I think that was just a rear wheel issue. This post is just front wheel... maybe
« Last Edit: June 05, 2019, 04:35:51 pm by Daytona_Mike »
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Offline MAN OF BLUES

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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #7 on: June 05, 2019, 06:47:31 pm »
That "loosy-goosy" feeling does tell a lot, here is a safe method to check again;
Going down the road slowly (under 20 mph), allow the bike to decellerate by cutting the throttle, pull in the clutch, and do a series of "S" turns, swaying from one side of the road, across to the opposite side (no traffic, of course).. go side to side in that manner at least for or five "sways", and be fairly agressive in how far you sway the bike...
Worn wheel bearings will "growl/rumble", and be felt easily in the "apex's" of each sway, and you will surely feel it in the bars...
Both of my C10's did this exact same thing, and I changed wheel bearings in one at a hotel in Wellsboro at a rally... the very next day, another COG friend "rolled" in, barely, with the same exact problem, and his were so bad, the actual steel "cage" in the bearing ripped apart, and ripped thru the outer seal.... :-\
Luckily for him, I had all the tools... but as my bearings were pre-'94, and he had a newer model, I didn't have bearings for him.. but another longtime COG member did, and he "tossed them" to me and said "have fun".... it only took about an hour and 15 minutes, to do it in thee parking lot... and over 45 minutes of that time, was spent trying to find the "circlip" that went "pingggg--tink-tink"... which we had everyone searching for in the parking lot... over my shoulder...  easy fix tho with tools in hand, and when I was buying a hammer (didn't have one in my box) at a hardware store, I actually saw bins, with fasteners and such, and they actually had the right sized bearings in there... really odd.... (they weren't sealed bearings, but they would have been fine for resuming a trip, and another 1000 or so miles in an emergency).

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Offline Patrick

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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #8 on: June 05, 2019, 07:44:19 pm »
I pulled the windshield and dash and tugged on the frame all around the headlight; everything seems OK.  Then I got real brave and rode it home at a blistering 15 MPH without my earplugs.  I heard definite squeaking, like something rubbing on the tire, but intermittently, with no discernible pattern.  I'll start tearing it apart tonight and let you all know what I find.  Thanks for the suggestions!
Pat Morganson COG #10545
Ridgefield, WA

2005 Concours:  Nov '11 - Present
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Offline Patrick

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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #9 on: June 05, 2019, 11:17:31 pm »
Yup. Bearings were all akimbo when I pulled the front wheel.  I assume I should change the rear as long as I'm at it, so I'll be ordering bearings and seals from Murph's tonight.  Thanks again for the tips!
Pat Morganson COG #10545
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Offline MAN OF BLUES

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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #10 on: June 06, 2019, 06:08:37 pm »
Yup. Bearings were all akimbo when I pulled the front wheel.  I assume I should change the rear as long as I'm at it, so I'll be ordering bearings and seals from Murph's tonight.  Thanks again for the tips!


rear bearings last like 10x longer than fronts, actually I've never had one "go bad"; (the bearings are more robust, and because the spacing between them is much wider, they don't get stressed);  front's are undersized, and see a lot of "lateral" forces..

I'm not saying don't buy the rears, I always make sure I have "spares", but inspect the ones back there first, by sticking your finger in them, rotating and push/pull on them, and then if they are smooth, not crusty or notchy feeling, save the labor until they do go bad.
Bearings can be funny... sometimes a perfectly good bearing, that may last 100k miles, when replaced prematurely, the replacement may be of a lessor quality, and fail within 20k...  I leave the good ones in...

as for tools and methods to help you with that job, go into the COG library, and find the Concourier with the article called "Shake, Rattle, & Roll", that I wrote as a tech piece, it will show you what tools I suggest, and explain how it's done...
IIRC it's the Spring '07 issue...
Don't just try to use a long "tapered" punch, it doesn't work... and you will cuss until tomorrow trying to get the bearings out with one.

Good luck,  :great: :beerchug:
« Last Edit: June 06, 2019, 06:28:31 pm by MAN OF BLUES »

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Offline Patrick

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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #11 on: June 06, 2019, 10:18:02 pm »
I tried looking up the article, but it only opens a blank page.  I don't see any 'code' in the popup, nor anywhere to enter a code.  The link in the popup is exactly the same as the link in the search result text.  I made sure I was logged in.  Maybe I'm not tech savvy enuff... ?  Did I miss a secret handshake?    :D
Pat Morganson COG #10545
Ridgefield, WA

2005 Concours:  Nov '11 - Present
1982 Suzuki GS 650 L:  '82-'86

Offline Pbfoot

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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #12 on: June 07, 2019, 12:39:41 am »
I tried looking up the article, but it only opens a blank page.  I don't see any 'code' in the popup, nor anywhere to enter a code.  The link in the popup is exactly the same as the link in the search result text.  I made sure I was logged in.  Maybe I'm not tech savvy enuff... ?  Did I miss a secret handshake?    :D
If you are on the mobile site the tech pages don't work. You have to use the desktop site.
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Offline MAN OF BLUES

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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #13 on: June 07, 2019, 12:42:10 am »
COMPLETELY LOG OFF  both the forum and the COGmos website, then log in again to both...
then go to the library, and look/pull up the issue.. you should get a popup, explaining the input "password", you have to manually copy it, and input it...(copy/paste don't work..).. sorry that stuff should be easier to "reach" but it does have copywrites.. fehhhh...

lemme know what transpires, I'm all about "helping"... I don't get paid for it, but hell.. some one has to do it.. and I don't see anyone "popping up" to offer anything close.


p/m me if you can't get to it.

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Offline Patrick

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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #14 on: June 07, 2019, 03:38:02 am »
It wouldn't work with Chrome on Windows or Mac, Safari on Mac, or Firefox on Windows.  Finally got it to work on Windows with Edge.    >:(
Pat Morganson COG #10545
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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #15 on: June 12, 2019, 11:52:36 pm »
Well, thanks to your article, I was able to get the speedo-side bearing out of the wheel without much trouble.  Unfortunately, when I pulled the wheel, the bearing on the right side came out in shavings and pieces, leaving the outer race inside the wheel.  There isn't enough room to get ahold of an edge from the far side, so I can't get behind it with a screwdriver or anything else I have laying around to pound it out.  Am I going to have to cut it out with my Dremel, or is there a handy dandy trick for removing a broken bearing?
Pat Morganson COG #10545
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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #16 on: June 13, 2019, 01:27:40 pm »
« Last Edit: June 13, 2019, 01:31:32 pm by connie_rider »
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Offline m in sc

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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #17 on: June 13, 2019, 01:52:36 pm »
i just did this, cavemanned it. broke out the mig welder, welded a nut to the inside race  to close the hole up, and ran a bead on the ball races as ive had that happen before as well. long brass drift and had them both out in less than 10 minutes. the head from welding also helps them come out way easier. IF you have a welder, its so much easier this way.  .02


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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #18 on: June 13, 2019, 04:53:48 pm »
Unfortunately, this caveman doesn't have a welder.  And I can't get at the bearing from the other side with enough angle to punch it out. Guess I'm going shopping for bearing pullers...
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Offline MAN OF BLUES

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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #19 on: June 13, 2019, 11:09:11 pm »
bummer...
yeah, when the guts blow out of the middle, there isn't much you can do but find a "BIG" washer that fits in the grrove, ans tack weld it in, and pound it out from the farside.. Might be cheaper to just go find a big washer, and carry the wheel to a local welder, for the tacking job.. bring the punch and hammer with ya, so incase you break the weld, he can re weld it right there.. and clean all that gooby stuff off the recess before anything else, a lot of crust in there that will restrict the punch out process..

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Offline m in sc

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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #20 on: June 14, 2019, 01:30:32 pm »
do you have a die grinder? you can -carefully- grind the race in one spot until it gets paper thin, then do the other side 180 degrees from original cut. it will then be easy to pick out, just dont damage the aluminum.


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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #21 on: June 14, 2019, 01:47:30 pm »
I don't have a die grinder, but I do have a variable speed Dremel that is rated up to 35K rpm.  The inner bearing puller kits that Ted suggested, I've only seen with up to 32mm attachments, and I measured the opening at 34mm.  I was thinking about getting a 3 jaw bearing puller similar to this; https://www.ebay.com/itm/3-Jaw-Pilot-Inner-Bearing-Inner-Puller-Tool-Bushing-Gear-Extractor-12mm-38mm-GT/401784684170?hash=item5d8c3bbe8a:g:z~oAAOSwnIVdALzz.  I'm not sure if the 3 jaw puller will hold in the groove, and I'm concerned that I might damage the wheel if I use the Dremel. 
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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #22 on: June 14, 2019, 02:14:18 pm »
The 3 finger puller might work, but try to find one with a slide hammer.
 NOTE: An internal puller loads outwards. This outwards force might expand/tighten the race in the wheel.
Cutting with a Dremel might work too. I've used this method on other races.
 NOTE: Damaging the aluminum with grooves is not a real problem as the new race would go back in fine.
Welding in a washer/other sounds like the best option to me if you can find washer and someone to do a proper weld.
 NOTE: Washer needs to be the right size to allow the weld to be on the edge.
               If washer too big, drill holes near the edge of the washer for the welds.
            If no washer available, use a piece of flat stock that just welds across the bearing race.
             
Ride safe, Ted
« Last Edit: June 14, 2019, 04:53:39 pm by connie_rider »
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Offline MAN OF BLUES

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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #23 on: June 14, 2019, 04:38:05 pm »
I don't have a die grinder, but I do have a variable speed Dremel that is rated up to 35K rpm.  The inner bearing puller kits that Ted suggested, I've only seen with up to 32mm attachments, and I measured the opening at 34mm.  I was thinking about getting a 3 jaw bearing puller similar to this; https://www.ebay.com/itm/3-Jaw-Pilot-Inner-Bearing-Inner-Puller-Tool-Bushing-Gear-Extractor-12mm-38mm-GT/401784684170?hash=item5d8c3bbe8a:g:z~oAAOSwnIVdALzz.  I'm not sure if the 3 jaw puller will hold in the groove, and I'm concerned that I might damage the wheel if I use the Dremel.

look closely at that 3 finger puller, that simply won't work, as you will be trying to "pull" from the fingers, sitting in the "radiused" area of the bearing race... that puller has nothing to prevent it from "fingers compressing together" when attempting to pull... it requires those fingers to "catch on an edge".. if you get what I'm saying...

I'm telling ya, cheapest, easiest, and most safe way at this point is taking the rim and washers, or a piece of 1/8" thick x 1" wide bar stock, cut to length to "fit inside the groove diameter" as a "bridge",  to a welder, for a very simple cheap "tack weld", and you pound it out in his parking lot, before leaving.. No good welder would charge you more than $20... I bet they would even do it for a "six-pack".... :)

should look like this in cross section, below
« Last Edit: June 14, 2019, 04:59:11 pm by MAN OF BLUES »

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Offline rgmr250

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Re: Front end feels like riding on gravel
« Reply #24 on: June 14, 2019, 05:05:45 pm »
One option that might work is to sacrifice a flathead screwdriver and bend (just and only just enough) the end of it so it catches on the inner lip when coming in from the other side. I assume, looking at the pic, and from what you've said that you can't 'catch' the lip with anything from the other side, but a flathead screwdriver with the tip bent might just catch the lip, then you can slowly work your way around. Sometimes some heat carefully applied can loosen things up and help the process. I've used the dremel and the bent screwdriver method (steering stem bearings, I think) in the past.
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