Need some help with an odd front end problem (TWSS) - Wrist Twisters
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post #1 of 24 Old 03-01-2017, 10:14 PM Thread Starter
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Need some help with an odd front end problem (TWSS)

The best way to explain this problem is to say that when I start a turn, it wants to turn more and it's heavy to keep it from turning more. Imaging you're about 10~20% into a turn and the bike wants to fall into the turn, so you have to push against it.

Kinda like when you hit a tar snake or curb. You hit a curb and the tire wants to crawl up the curb.

I know I didn't have this problem on my other bike, so I know that something is wrong.

I've got to replace the seals, so I'm going to clean the valves and replace the oil.

I've done this on another bike, but I don't remember what oil I used. I think it was ATF and that's about 5 wt?

My riding is around town and I want to replace the front tire, seals, fork oil and maybe valves/springs... I also want to check the head bearings.

1. what oil would be best for around the city riding in traffic?

2. tire for the same?

3. how to check the head bearings, assume bike to be lifted.

4. is there a cheap way to improve the forks once they are apart?

5. how do you "dial in" a front end?

One other note, my special air gauge battery went dead. Last I checked, it requires resync when a battery goes dead, so I don't actually know the true PSI and won't until I replace the gauge.

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post #2 of 24 Old 03-01-2017, 11:04 PM
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I like checking easy things first: aside from checking the pressure, how old is the tire and how's it looking? I've ridden bikes with badly squared-off or cupped tires and the steering/handling goes to shit in a manner similar to what you describe.

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post #3 of 24 Old 03-01-2017, 11:04 PM
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I'm gonna assume you have the 919. I'm not 100% sure what is making your bike fall in, but there are a few things that I know affect that. #1 - tires (assuming you have them properly inflated)- some tires (high performance) have steep profiles (more triangular) and they just fall in super fast. #2 I'd say is make sure that the sag is adjusted properly. If your front end sits lower than the rear, it's always gonna feel heavy. Hopefully it's something simple like that.

1. that topic is taboo as far as I know, so I'd say research that one on your own.

2. everyone seems to rave about the Michelin PR4 which to my knowledge has tons of grip for bad conditions (e.g. city) but you may not like the feel of them.

3. i'm no expert but to my knowledge, after getting the front end off the ground with no forces acting on it other than gravity, you just move em around a bit. shouldn't have any play, should require little to no effort to steer, and feels smooth and uniform throughout; specifically speaking--no tactile "notches."

4. cheap way to improve forks? cheap depends on who you ask but yeah there are kits to respring and revalve the forks for the hornet to better suit your needs and riding style.

5. "dial in" is tough for the hornet because there aren't really any adjustable settings. i dont think there's any need to "dial in" the hornet besides coarse adjustments e.g. springs/valve kit. you're not racing it.

I'm just some punk kid but hopefully there's one thing i said that helps. good luck

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post #4 of 24 Old 03-01-2017, 11:14 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by derpydog View Post
I like checking easy things first: aside from checking the pressure, how old is the tire and how's it looking? I've ridden bikes with badly squared-off or cupped tires and the steering/handling goes to shit in a manner similar to what you describe.
I'd have to check the age, but they actually look good and feel good, but are aged. They were due up a while ago. I didn't want to put on a new tire until I fixed a few things.

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post #5 of 24 Old 03-01-2017, 11:18 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by nathanktm View Post
I'm gonna assume you have the 919. I'm not 100% sure what is making your bike fall in, but there are a few things that I know affect that. #1 - tires (assuming you have them properly inflated)- some tires (high performance) have steep profiles (more triangular) and they just fall in super fast. #2 I'd say is make sure that the sag is adjusted properly. If your front end sits lower than the rear, it's always gonna feel heavy. Hopefully it's something simple like that.

1. that topic is taboo as far as I know, so I'd say research that one on your own.

2. everyone seems to rave about the Michelin PR4 which to my knowledge has tons of grip for bad conditions (e.g. city) but you may not like the feel of them.

3. i'm no expert but to my knowledge, after getting the front end off the ground with no forces acting on it other than gravity, you just move em around a bit. shouldn't have any play, should require little to no effort to steer, and feels smooth and uniform throughout; specifically speaking--no tactile "notches."

4. cheap way to improve forks? cheap depends on who you ask but yeah there are kits to respring and revalve the forks for the hornet to better suit your needs and riding style.

5. "dial in" is tough for the hornet because there aren't really any adjustable settings. i dont think there's any need to "dial in" the hornet besides coarse adjustments e.g. springs/valve kit. you're not racing it.

I'm just some punk kid but hopefully there's one thing i said that helps. good luck
Thanks for all the info, why would I might not like the feel of the PR4? Do they tend to dive into a turn?

I guess by cheap, I'm looking for something like valves, springs, etc... that really have an impact. I hear great things about the 919, but there's clearly something wrong with mine.

Maybe I need a chart on oil wt so that I can understand the difference between different weights.

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post #6 of 24 Old 03-01-2017, 11:25 PM
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Originally Posted by KarlJay View Post
Thanks for all the info, why would I might not like the feel of the PR4? Do they tend to dive into a turn?
IME they're a very neutral handling tire-- I don't ever feel like they go into the turn too fast or too slow-- and can't be beat in wet conditions.

Did you check that your rear tire wasn't squared off or cupped too?

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post #7 of 24 Old 03-01-2017, 11:28 PM
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You might not like the PR4 because you just might not, for whatever reason. You'll never know if you like a tire or not until you try it. That's what I was getting at. Changing the springs or valving on your forks will make a big impact, generally for the better. Fork oil can make a difference as well. With a fresh set of dunlop q3s, my hornet required no effort on the bars to maintain a lean angle. My old, squared tires needed constant counter-steer to keep the bike leaned

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post #8 of 24 Old 03-01-2017, 11:31 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by derpydog View Post
IME they're a very neutral handling tire-- I don't ever feel like they go into the turn too fast or too slow-- and can't be beat in wet conditions.

Did you check that your rear tire wasn't squared off or cupped too?
I'm not sure that either tire is faulty beyond being old. I don't even know if I would be able to tell by sight if they were squared or cupped.

I just figured that something must be wrong. I know I have a bad seal, the fork oil is old as well as the tires.

I figure a seal, fork oil and a tire should do the trick. I'll clean the heck out of the valve when it's open, but wondering what else I could/should do while in there and what tire/oil would be best for my city usage.

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post #9 of 24 Old 03-01-2017, 11:40 PM
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Old tires (more than a couple years) may as well be seen as faulty. Old tires have no grip compared to fresh tires. If they are really that old, that's your primary concern. Squared tires are simply tires that are more worn in the center than on the sides. Typical of every tire that hasn't seen a race track. Try to make sure you get the correct wt fork oil as well. I believe it's 10 weight but I could be wrong. I think that if you fix those things, and maybe have the sag set again, your problem should go away.

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post #10 of 24 Old 03-02-2017, 12:21 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nathanktm View Post
Old tires (more than a couple years) may as well be seen as faulty. Old tires have no grip compared to fresh tires. If they are really that old, that's your primary concern. Squared tires are simply tires that are more worn in the center than on the sides. Typical of every tire that hasn't seen a race track. Try to make sure you get the correct wt fork oil as well. I believe it's 10 weight but I could be wrong. I think that if you fix those things, and maybe have the sag set again, your problem should go away.
How do you set the sag? I remember seeing a video about putting something on the fork that slides once you sit on it. I don't remember how to adjust it.

Guess I need a full schooling on the whole process. No idea how to adjust the rear or if the rear would effect the turn in.

Any tire considered best for city use? Is PR4 the "standard goto" tire?

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post #11 of 24 Old 03-02-2017, 12:28 AM
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For city use I'd personally say economy is the idea, being that you really aren't going to be anywhere near the limits of traction if you're a sensible human being. If you find yourself moving quick in the rain, or you like to split lanes and be an aggressive rider in general, I'd personally shoot for PR4s for city riding. I ride with dunlop Q3s and I love them. They are a perfect mix for commuting, spirited riding and full blown trackdays while still being somewhat economical.

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post #12 of 24 Old 03-02-2017, 04:09 AM
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To me, it sounds like your tires are worn and have flat spots. I've felt this a few times in the past. The PR series of tires are more neutral; they roll nicely and don't tend to throw the bike into a turn.

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post #13 of 24 Old 03-02-2017, 12:16 PM Thread Starter
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Local shop has seals in stock and he says S21 or Q3 is a good choice.

https://www.revzilla.com/motorcycle/...21-front-tires

https://www.revzilla.com/motorcycle/...ax-front-tires

About the same price, any suggestions between the two?

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post #14 of 24 Old 03-02-2017, 04:42 PM
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Q3 are crap for mileage. Get a set of pilot roads. You can still find PR2s for cheap. I've done 5+ track days and commuted over 12k miles on one set alone. 919 is on its 3rd set. Tuono is on its first set of PR4s and they're amazing, wet conditions, nearly 4k miles, 1 track day and they still look new, that's with a vtwin with massive engine braking.

As to tires, tire size matters. Also it sounds like your tire has squared off, cupped, and/ or flat spots. The 919 is very neutral feeling in its steering feedback thanks to its lazy geometry.

Karl, you're over thinking this. It's ok, breathe. Remember, "K.I.S.S." If it ain't broke, don't fix it. Also, if you're having s hard time telling if your tire has issues visually, feel them up. Beyond that, I strongly advise you to find a motorcycle friend that is knowledgeable and have them help you through your suspension.

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post #15 of 24 Old 03-02-2017, 05:51 PM Thread Starter
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Well I found one problem. The bike sat for quite a while and my Accutire gauge battery died, couldn't find my manual filler so I ran as is.

Ends up it was very low on air. I also jacked up the front after putting the rear on the stand, and tried to spin the front tire. It really doesn't spin free, I can get it to spin maybe 1/2 turn with good effort, but that doesn't seem right.

The head bearings seem great, no play, easy movement.

I know more after I change the fork oil and seals.

The tire does seem to be squared off and is cupped as well as old, so we'll see how a new tire feels soon.

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post #16 of 24 Old 03-02-2017, 05:53 PM Thread Starter
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Q3 are crap for mileage. Get a set of pilot roads. You can still find PR2s for cheap. I've done 5+ track days and commuted over 12k miles on one set alone. 919 is on its 3rd set. Tuono is on its first set of PR4s and they're amazing, wet conditions, nearly 4k miles, 1 track day and they still look new, that's with a vtwin with massive engine braking.

As to tires, tire size matters. Also it sounds like your tire has squared off, cupped, and/ or flat spots. The 919 is very neutral feeling in its steering feedback thanks to its lazy geometry.

Karl, you're over thinking this. It's ok, breathe. Remember, "K.I.S.S." If it ain't broke, don't fix it. Also, if you're having s hard time telling if your tire has issues visually, feel them up. Beyond that, I strongly advise you to find a motorcycle friend that is knowledgeable and have them help you through your suspension.
At this point, I've found a deal on the S21, buy a pair get $50 visa card. They seem like a good choice and at $166 for a pair, it's hard to beat even if they don't last long.
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post #17 of 24 Old 03-02-2017, 06:04 PM
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At this point, I've found a deal on the S21, buy a pair get $50 visa card. They seem like a good choice and at $166 for a pair, it's hard to beat even if they don't last long.
For that price for a set, I don't blame you. Pretty good deal there.

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post #18 of 24 Old 03-02-2017, 06:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KarlJay View Post
Well I found one problem. The bike sat for quite a while and my Accutire gauge battery died, couldn't find my manual filler so I ran as is.

I also jacked up the front after putting the rear on the stand, and tried to spin the front tire. It really doesn't spin free, I can get it to spin maybe 1/2 turn with good effort, but that doesn't seem right.
That sounds fine to me. Mine was the same way after putting the front wheel back on. If you're concerned, take it for a spin around the block a few laps without touching the front brakes. When you come back, both rotors should be cool.

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post #19 of 24 Old 03-03-2017, 07:21 AM
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That sounds fine to me. Mine was the same way after putting the front wheel back on.
That is most definitely not fine... Either one of your bearings is shot (not very likely) or something is out of alignment...

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post #20 of 24 Old 03-03-2017, 07:46 AM Thread Starter
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That is most definitely not fine... Either one of your bearings is shot (not very likely) or something is out of alignment...
This is what I was thinking, I have car tires that spin better than that. IDK if it's brake drag or what but it doesn't feel right.

If it were a bearing on one side, that would account for a pulling to the right.

I wonder how hard it is to replace the wheel bearings, they shouldn't be too expensive.

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post #21 of 24 Old 03-03-2017, 07:28 PM Thread Starter
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First ride after fixing the air pressure. The pressure REALLY made a difference. It's a lot better.

I'm working in the tires, seals, oil, etc as I'm sure they're problems too.
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post #22 of 24 Old 03-06-2017, 08:07 AM
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Quote:
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This is what I was thinking, I have car tires that spin better than that. IDK if it's brake drag or what but it doesn't feel right.

If it were a bearing on one side, that would account for a pulling to the right.

I wonder how hard it is to replace the wheel bearings, they shouldn't be too expensive.
Bearings are pretty easy, I did all three rear bearings the other day in around an hour. Unless your bike is super high miles or has been abused your front bearings are likely fine, and they're pretty easy to check if you pop the wheel off and spin them by hand.

I had a similar issue (wheel not spinning much) on my race bike last year and it was just a misalignment causing brake drag... cleaned up everything, loosened everything up, bounced it around a bit and made sure everything was straight and it got way better...

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post #23 of 24 Old 03-06-2017, 09:24 AM Thread Starter
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Bearings are pretty easy, I did all three rear bearings the other day in around an hour. Unless your bike is super high miles or has been abused your front bearings are likely fine, and they're pretty easy to check if you pop the wheel off and spin them by hand.

I had a similar issue (wheel not spinning much) on my race bike last year and it was just a misalignment causing brake drag... cleaned up everything, loosened everything up, bounced it around a bit and made sure everything was straight and it got way better...
I'm going to have to check if I have brake drag. I've got one of those IR temp guns and should be able to ride around a bit only using the rear brakes and see if the front gets warm.

Just kinda surprised that a car tire would spin more than a motorcycle tire. Just doesn't seem right, I'll get to the bottom of it.

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post #24 of 24 Old 03-06-2017, 04:04 PM Thread Starter
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Just tore down the forks. The tires spins very nice when the brakes are off.

The fluid on the right (as sitting on bike) had water in it and looked like milk/gravy.

Cleaned them up with brake cleaner as I saw no seals the cleaner would harm.

Now it's just putting on the new seals and adding new fluid.

Should make a big difference, pretty excited about the next test ride. Still working on the new tires.
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