Handlebar shimmy

Discussion in 'General Harley Davidson Topic' started by Old legend, Jul 2, 2009.

  1. Old legend

    Old legend Member

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    Just wanted to know, why when I let go of the handlebars does the front end "shimmy". It mainly happens at lower speeds like 45. I did let go on the freeway (at 3am after work) to see if it would do it, but there was no shake. Just at the lower speeds.
     
  2. madlee

    madlee Member

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    Hi, have you checked the rear wheel bearings,have had similar problem to yours and cured it when put new bearings in.
     
  3. Old legend

    Old legend Member

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    I've checked the air pressure and it's fine. No I haven't checked the rear bearings, but then again the bike only has 9000 miles on it. But it gives me someplace else to look.
     
  4. Stormrider51

    Stormrider51 Active Member

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    Front wheel out of balance? That's a problem that often shows up only at about the speed you stated. It's probably there at slower speeds but you don't notice it. At higher speeds the frequency becomes so fast that it is felt as a vibration rather than a shimmy.

    Just my guess.
    John
     
  5. Old legend

    Old legend Member

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    I've had the opportunity to watch the front wheel while riding (leaned over and watched it) and it does not appear to be out of balance. I'll look at the front fork alignment next.
     
  6. 67hat34c

    67hat34c Active Member

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    Steering head bolt. Bet you are going 45-50 and let go as bike decelerates and it shakes. IF you set it at 45-50 and tighten the throttle tension adjuster so it holds that speed and you let go I bet it wont shake. If it only shakes while deceleration then it is steering head bolt. Take it to HD, only takes 30m shop time so not that expensive to correct.
     
  7. donhorstkotte

    donhorstkotte New Member

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    I bought a 2009 Road Glide in June and had a tourpak added in August. I was then that I noticed a severe front end wobble between 35 and 45 mph. The dealer checked the air pressure, tightened the forks (a technical advisor said to tighten them more than spec) and offered to put on a new front wheel. On my ride home the wobble was there as bad as ever. I called the dealer right back and he suggested taking the tourpak off to see if that made a difference. (They had not road tested it with the tourpak on the bike) THE WOBBLE WAS COMPLETELY ELIMINATED. I'm new to Harley's ... is there some sort of rear end adjustment to compensate for the weight of the tourpak? I haven't had a rider yet, but suspect that the extra weight of the rider will make things even worse. The dealer is looking into it without much success.
     
  8. NEWHD74FAN

    NEWHD74FAN Experienced Member Retired Moderators

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    No surprise that the wobble was eliminated when the tourpack was removed. When I had a sport touring (metric) machine...I put a hard pack on the rear luggage carrier and handlebar shimmy was very noticeable during deaccel. After that experience, I always keep the weight low and do not put anything heavy up high in there. Since it was a one time experience, I just am very conservative when packing a bike, low and close to center of gravity of the bike about where the rider's backrest would be...
     
  9. Rabid Ranger

    Rabid Ranger Member

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    My FB has a shimmy, no hands, decelerating from 40mph to 35mph. I did this test which was suggested by a local wrench because I have a static "hitch" in my steering when turned side to side. His opinion is "neck bearings". A little history..this bike had 4K on it when I bought it. The original owner had a back issue and it appears he rode it with the front shock oil under serviced and the fork was bottoming out. It also has the HD front end lowering kit installed. So I think this condition did some damage to the neck bearings. The bottoming out was cured by servicing the fork. I used the HD racing oil and the fork is nice and stiff....possibly too stiff. I plan today to take the windshield off today and do the test again to see if the shimmy/wobble is still there. I plan to replace the neck bearings when the good riding season ends here. Other than this hitch/noise when swinging the front end the bike behaves normally hands on at highway speeds (speed limit here on the interstate is 75) and low speeds.

    Just thought I'd put in my two cents for what it is worth.

    RR
     
  10. Rabid Ranger

    Rabid Ranger Member

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    Is this an adjustment issue? or something more?

    RR