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steering too loose

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I re-greased my steering stem bearings, they didn't really need it surprisingly as they looked mint and had been recently done before I bought the bike. I wasn't having any binding issues but I've found that I'm getting some head shake cause the steering just seems really loose.

My buddy confirmed it when he took it for a ride, and said that it's really sensitive.

Can I just tighten the nut for the steering stem that is underneath the upper clamp? I want to ask first before I take off the clamp.

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yes but don't over tighten it. just tight enough so it does'nt slam into the stops when tilted to either side while on the stand, but loose enough so that it will still fall into them. you'll obviously need to re torque the upper clamp nut an re tighten th upper clamp pinch bolts.

Steering may be sensitive due to your suspension set up. You could try sliding your fork tubes down in the clmps a few millimeters. you may also not have enough sag in the rear.

Edited by mywifefarts

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Just wanted to throw this out there: I thought steering was getting a little loose with a slight head shake as well. I could hear it when I first started riding but couldn't hear it after the bike was warmed up good. Thought, for sure, it was the stem or the stem bearings...even did a quick check by moving the handlebars while supporting the front wheel in between my knees.

When I went in to tighten it up, I realized this was not the problem. It ended up being my front wheel bearings...plain as day! The odd thing was that I checked the front wheel bearings first but I guess the hot bearings swelled while riding and so it was not apparent.

Just a thought.

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Is it a high speed head shake or slow speed head shake?

How tight did you tighten the lower spanner nut? I make it kinda tight(not real tight when putting in new bearings to seat the bearings and then lossen it and lightly snug it(book for my yz250 calls for 5 foot pounds) Then i torque the upper slamp. If its a high speed shack try lowing the forks in the clamps like mywifefarts said

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If your stem is properly tightened, try a little less compression damping on your forks.

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If your stem is properly tightened, try a little less compression damping on your forks.

If you go that route, speeding up the rebound can also help in some situations.

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It's a high speed shake, going through gravel/dirt trails fairly loose stuff. The forks are level with the upper clamps, they cannot really go down any further, but I suppose they could if they recess themselves in the upper clamps?

At first I tried lowering the tire pressure as it was hard as a rock, it helped a little but things are still a little shaky.

Considering now that I've mentioned what kind of terrain I get the shake, would you still consider that I tighten the spanner nut and lower the forks slightly?

The shake does not happen on flat hard surfaces, like grass or hard packed dirt.

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Check your sag, and/or change your riding position. On this bike you run a fine balance, to make it turn well in the really tight stuff it will get a little scitish on the high speed loose stuff especially if you get a little lazy with body position. When I first got mine I had to change where I sat/stood when flat out but for the life if me I can't remember what I adjusted it's now instinctual(insert smilie for old fat bastard loosin his mental faculties)

As an after thought do you know if the rear shock has ever been serviced?

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I dont think its his sag(even thow it can caose it) but this happened since he took things apart. I would not lower the forks any more. Did you use a torque wench on the clamp nut and use the proper torque spec from the book? Because if that nut is not tight enought it can make the steering loose.

What year and model bike is it?

My 06 yz250 calls for 105 foot pounds

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I did not torque it because I did not have the proper adapter for the torque wrench. The nut is a weird one with rectangular slots on the sides...

I used my clutch holding tool, it worked perfectly and gripped in the slots nicely, I tightened it tight, but def not to 105ft pounds.

I'll play around with it today and tighten it more and see how it swings after, going to try and guestimate a good 100ft pounds lol.

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I did not torque it because I did not have the proper adapter for the torque wrench. The nut is a weird one with rectangular slots on the sides...

I used my clutch holding tool, it worked perfectly and gripped in the slots nicely, I tightened it tight, but def not to 105ft pounds.

I'll play around with it today and tighten it more and see how it swings after, going to try and guestimate a good 100ft pounds lol.

DONT tighted the bottom nut, the weired on as you call it to 105. That only gets 5.1 foot pounds. The upper one is 105 foot pounds. The one under the handlebard that hold the tripple clamp to the steering stem. Thats also depends on what year and bike it is since you never said that.

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Thanks,

I was going to check the manual before I did it but that was what I was going to do in my head was to tighten the spanner nut.

I didn't do it super tight with the clutch holding tool either, just so that it was tight enough and the back and forth movement of the bars was smooth.

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