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Clamps twisted making Bars crooked?

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Fell over the other day and when I picked bike up the Handle Bars were cooked. They aren't bent just out of line.

 

What exactly Twist's or gets out of line to cause this? What is the correct method to get the Handle Bars back in line in orientation with the Front wheel and Fender?

 

Can you just loosen the Triple clamp bolts while wheel is still on and then put your knees in front of wheel then turn Handle Bars in opposite direction to align it?

Or......do yu have to completely remove the wheel, Fork Tubes and Top Clamp to reset the Steering Stem and Lower clamp back inline?

 

Or .......can you just loosen the Steering Stem Nut at the top and then loosen the Crown Nut?

 

Also..... or.....does the Handle Bar clamps get turned or twisted that cause this alignment problem.

 

The fall wasn't that hard but could have been hard enough to knock the bars out of alignment.

 

I am going to take the Handle Bar clamps out just to check them to make sure that stem isn't bent.

 

One other thing is.........on that Crown nut....that tightens the top Steering bearing down.......would it be ok to tighten it just a bit more than the torque spec in the manual?

 

Manual says yo first tighten it to 27ft pounds then back off one turn (which this makes it completely loose) then torque to I believe 5 or 8ft lbs.

 

How do most of you go about getting bars back inline with front tire when a Fall happens?

Does tightening the Crown Nut make it harder for the Clamps to twist?

 

It's a 2016 Yamaha YZ450.

 

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I usually just put the front wheel up against a tree and yank the bars the other way till it's straight. Seeing you have it home go ahead and loosen where the triples clamp the fork tubes, loosen axle and straighten then retorque everything you loosened.

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The steering stem and crown nut have nothing to do with the fork tubes getting twisted in the clamps. Set them to whatever torque your manual specifies (with the fork tube clamp bolts loose) and leave them alone.

Take the bottom clamp bolts loose, bounce it a couple times, and it will usually realign. Quick fix in the field is to grab the front wheel between your knees and yank the bar back in line. Though this is many times ball park and not a perfect realignment.

 

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Could be the bushings in the handlebar mounting bolts as well. If you stand over the bars and the top line of the bar looks uneven/crooked when looking at the top of the triple clamp...bushings or a bent mounting bolt could be the culprit. This happened to me on awhile back.

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I usually just put the front wheel up against a tree and yank the bars the other way till it's straight. Seeing you have it home go ahead and loosen where the triples clamp the fork tubes, loosen axle and straighten then retorque everything you loosened.


This is me every time!!! Haha!!! Or I just kick it with my boot a few times. But I ride an old XR so really don't worry too much.

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7 hours ago, CaptainKnobby said:

 

Fell over the other day and when I picked bike up the Handle Bars were cooked. They aren't bent just out of line.

 

What exactly Twist's or gets out of line to cause this? What is the correct method to get the Handle Bars back in line in orientation with the Front wheel and Fender?

 

Can you just loosen the Triple clamp bolts while wheel is still on and then put your knees in front of wheel then turn Handle Bars in opposite direction to align it?

Or......do yu have to completely remove the wheel, Fork Tubes and Top Clamp to reset the Steering Stem and Lower clamp back inline?

 

Or .......can you just loosen the Steering Stem Nut at the top and then loosen the Crown Nut?

 

Also..... or.....does the Handle Bar clamps get turned or twisted that cause this alignment problem.

 

The fall wasn't that hard but could have been hard enough to knock the bars out of alignment.

 

I am going to take the Handle Bar clamps out just to check them to make sure that stem isn't bent.

 

One other thing is.........on that Crown nut....that tightens the top Steering bearing down.......would it be ok to tighten it just a bit more than the torque spec in the manual?

 

Manual says yo first tighten it to 27ft pounds then back off one turn (which this makes it completely loose) then torque to I believe 5 or 8ft lbs.

 

How do most of you go about getting bars back inline with front tire when a Fall happens?

Does tightening the Crown Nut make it harder for the Clamps to twist?

 

It's a 2016 Yamaha YZ450.

 

 

Could you repeat the questions please?

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I usually just put the front wheel up against a tree and yank the bars the other way till it's straight. Seeing you have it home go ahead and loosen where the triples clamp the fork tubes, loosen axle and straighten then retorque everything you loosened.

I believe there's the trick! The Axle nut!
I have done what you said above,about loosening the Triples clamp bolts but have never loosened the Axle nut with them before.
I will remember that!. I went ahead and took the Handle Bars off along with Top Clamp and Front wheel. Took the Handle bar Holders off and the Rubber mounts that sit down in top triple clamps holes.

I done this to make sure the stem on the bar risers wasn't bent. They were ok. Re torqued the Ring nut to 8ft lbs....(manual said 5.1ft lb) I thought 5.1 was too loose.

Raised Fork Tubes in clamps to 6mm for better turning. Re-Torqued the Bar riser bolts underneath clamps to 29ft lb per manual. Put wheel back on tightened Axle nut to spec then pumped forks to align the lugs and torqued pinch bolts at axle.
Everything straight now. I'll remember what you said though.

Thanks!

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The steering stem and crown nut have nothing to do with the fork tubes getting twisted in the clamps. Set them to whatever torque your manual specifies (with the fork tube clamp bolts loose) and leave them alone.
Take the bottom clamp bolts loose, bounce it a couple times, and it will usually realign. Quick fix in the field is to grab the front wheel between your knees and yank the bar back in line. Though this is many times ball park and not a perfect realignment.
 

Why would you loosen the Fork clamps or have them loose before you tighten the Crown Nut and steering head nut?

I done it like you said though. I was just wondering however about the other way.

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Could be the bushings in the handlebar mounting bolts as well. If you stand over the bars and the top line of the bar looks uneven/crooked when looking at the top of the triple clamp...bushings or a bent mounting bolt could be the culprit. This happened to me on awhile back.

I checked that as well......stems for handle bar risers were ok.

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56 minutes ago, CaptainKnobby said:


Why would you loosen the Fork clamps or have them loose before you tighten the Crown Nut and steering head nut?

I done it like you said though. I was just wondering however about the other way.

The steering ring nut adjusts the play of the stem bearings (it is set with the top clamp off the bike). Then the steering shaft nut tightens the top clamp down onto the ring nut to serve as a lock/jam setup for the ring nut. If you try to tighten the steering shaft nut without loosening the top clamp bolts, you're pulling it down against the fork tubes, not against the steering ring nut. If your steering stem is already set and correct, all you're concerned with is the clamp bolts. Any further tightening of the steering shaft nut is useless as it has nothing to do with your fork tubes tweaking in the clamps.

Edited by OLHILLBILLY
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Your upper and lower triple clamps getting out of alignment in the steering stem are what made your front end out of line with your bars. If you're looking to get back to near perfect alignment in a shop setting, elevate the front end. I would then break loose the steering stem nut, the triple clamp bolts (not too loose so they don't slip down), the axle nut, and the axle pinch bolts. Then the tightening sequence would be: Triple clamp bolts (to line up the fork legs parallel), steering stem nut, very lightly snug up the axle pinch bolts and axle nut, set the front end back down and bounce the forks with the front brake engaged (to "set" the lower fork legs in an unstressed position on the axle), torque the lower pinch bolts, and tighten the axle nut.

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Your upper and lower triple clamps getting out of alignment in the steering stem are what made your front end out of line with your bars. If you're looking to get back to near perfect alignment in a shop setting, elevate the front end. I would then break loose the steering stem nut, the triple clamp bolts (not too loose so they don't slip down), the axle nut, and the axle pinch bolts. Then the tightening sequence would be: Triple clamp bolts (to line up the fork legs parallel), steering stem nut, very lightly snug up the axle pinch bolts and axle nut, set the front end back down and bounce the forks with the front brake engaged (to "set" the lower fork legs in an unstressed position on the axle), torque the lower pinch bolts, and tighten the axle nut.

Thanks! That is what I did.

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I have loosened the clamps and try to adjust. Try to imagine what angle you want to pull, and try it. I finally got sick of it an bought a new set up. I will try not to fall so much.

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I have had bent bolts on bar clamp before that caused this problem, but usually not.

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I have had bent bolts on bar clamp before that caused this problem, but usually not.

I bent one also on a 2010 yz450 before. Couldn't never get the Handle Bars aligned and tried everything. Finally one day took those bar risers off and sure enough the stem was bent.
Ordered a new and problem solved.

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Riding buddy's 2017 KTM 250 SX has handlebar clamps that actually bends the bolt shaft.

I was thinking that a one-piece top clamp (could not find a one-piece bottom clamp) would give it it some stability but also I was thinking of replacing the rubber mount with the aluminum ones.

Anyone tried this with good results?

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