Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  

handling=slop why?

Recommended Posts

i just did some real riding for the first time since october. Over the winter, i had the forks off and everything so any settings that MIGHT have been there before, are not necessarily there now.

anyways, when riding today, i was not feeling confident. My front tire felt like it was always going to wipe out and it couldnt track worth a crap. The bike was very unstable...bobbling all around and was always gettin caught up in lines. Now granted im probably a little rusty, i STILL felt less confident than the day i got the bike and was riding in the rain through mud. One thing i might add (dont call me an idiot) is that my tire psi was around 9.5 in front and 10 in rear. I know thats low, and would affect it some...but would it make THAT much of a difference?!? Is there any additional things that could be the problem?

I know sag and all that affects handling, but i never adjusted it before, and the bike handled fine when i first got it. My forks are 5mm up.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

set the clickers back to stock and work from there. While 9 - 10 psi is great for sand it sucks for hardpack and the risk of pinching your tube is way up there too.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My experience with handling has taut me two things.

1.When it doesn't feel right and I don't know why, start over and don't assume anything. Start at the front and set everything to stock specs. Tire pressure to sag.

2. If I have not been riding for a while make sure your reflexes are tuned up. Other words, don't let your rusty riding cloud your analysis of your bike performance.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

no, the bike definately felt squirmy and unstable. Even my friend thought so. WE were riding if everything from sandy conditions to hard pack dirt. I felt less confident than when i used to ride my friends xr200.

you say, try lowering the forks in the clamps? i thought you were suposed to raise the forks in the clamps (lower the front end) right now, the forks are sticking up above the top clamp by 5mm. Should i adjust it more?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

go out and buy gary semics bike setup its a wonderful tape and covers everything from suspension jetting tires differnet test you can perform and will tell you exactly what to do in ur situation. from what i can tell you need to put 11-13 psi in the front and 12-14 psi in the rear b/c right now theres not enough pressure so your tires are probably rolling side to side when you lay it ovr. then if your getting headshake then you need to lower the forks through the clamps but if it seems like you couldnt stay in the lines or you would get out of ruts then you need to raise the forks through the clamps. if you raise the forks thorugh the clamps it will turn quicker but wont be as stable at high speeds and if you lower the forks through the clamps it wont turn as quickly but will be more stable at high speed. hope that helps :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

try a michelin starcross ms3 tire in front too. itll be on a rail in the turns. but seriously also go over everything that you did when you had the forks off and make sure you put it bakc together right. something like haveing the wheel spacers on the wrong sides can really mess things up.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
try a michelin starcross ms3 tire in front too. itll be on a rail in the turns. but seriously also go over everything that you did when you had the forks off and make sure you put it bakc together right. something like haveing the wheel spacers on the wrong sides can really mess things up.

Hmm, that's a good point. I was having the same problems on my first ride as warrior86 and I kept wishing I had my front tire from my KX100 on there, which is a starcross ms3 tire. I felt MUCH more confident on the KX than the WR on the same type of trails. Then again, my sag was at 3" so I hope now that its at 4", things will be much better.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

im pretty sure wheel spacers are on right. How would i tell if they were on the wrong side? by lookin at them, i dont even think the bike would be ridable if they were on wrong because the brake wouldnt line up.

9.5 psi IS low, but would it make the difference between night and day, because that is the diffence my handling turned into. I know the front tire is crap to begin with but it was never this bad. I was thinkin bout gettin a new front but the front tire is still so new lookin i feel bad just wasting it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What are your steering head bearings like? When these get dry, rusted, or overtight the bikes can handle very strange.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Do yourself a favor. Set it back to factory, and ride it a couple more times. It sounds as though you are thinking more than riding because you dont have as much confidence as you do normally. That always blows symptoms out of proportion.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sounds pretty horrible!

As some folks have said, best to start from stock settings and make sure everything is peachy.

check...

Wheel bearings, spacers and spokes

Fork travel (smooth? Catchy?)

Forks bled for air?

Fork condition (evidence of wear on sliders?)

Head bearings (the lower bearing can rust up pretty easily)

Suspension linkage(s)

Rear shock rod (smooth operation, or catchy?)

Set everything back to standard settings. Reset static sag for your weight. If you weigh more than 70kg (155lbs), then you may need to replace springs to suit your weight and riding style.

Finally, if your motor is not pulling consistently and smoothly, then it will feel like hell. The front wheel will bog in turns and try to climb out of ruts. It will also feel like it is trying to sit up all the time. Sounds daft, but even small inconsistencies in carburretion can have a profound effect on handling, especialy when you are relying on drive to keep the machine in a turn.

It's unusual for the suspension to be that bad. Soudn sliek the settings are way out, or something (possible several somethings) are worn/wrecked.

Rod.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rear end is fine and i greased teh linkage. I also greased the headset and tightened the nut hand tight (as wrooster suggested) and then i gave it a tap with a hammer and punch just to be safe. I torqued everything down using a craftsman torque wrench. As far as spokes are concerned, i havent really checked them becasue im a little confused how to do it. People say different things. Ill give everything RODWR listed a good check tonight. thanks for the replies guys.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you havent checked your spokes then chances are very high they need tightening. They see a lot of stress.

Do a search on tightening them, there is plenty to draw from.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Spokes......

Get a spoke wrench...

Tap each spoke - it should sound pretty much the same for each spoke. If one or two are loose, then they will ring "dull" rather than "pinging" when you tap them with the spoke key.

To tighten spokes, don't just take up the loose ones......

Take up the slack on the loose ones (just the slack). Then work your way round the wheel, one side at a time, taking half a turn or a full turn on each spoke. Repeat as necessary until allt he spokes are at the same tension.

If you just tighten up the loose ones, then you will slack a spoke somewhere else. At worst, you can knock the wheel out of true, in which case you will need to rebuild the wheel.

If any spokes run out of thread, you need to replace the spokes. You can do this yourself (it's not hard, but time consuming) - there are lots of giudes to wheel building on the web, but my top tip is this.....take a photo of the wheel before you dismantle it - then you have a reference for the right spoke pattern for your hubs. If you're going to rebuild a wheel, you might as well get Exel rims at the same time. They last a lot longer than stockers.

Have fun.

Rod.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Reply with:

Sign in to follow this  

×