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Discussion Starter #1
have read many comments on this forum about the Wing's front end wobble and I have experienced it on my '06 as well. Since I don't normally ride around with both hands off the bars, it's not a problem for me, but it seems that it is for lots of folks on the forum. I've read the comments about how new bearings solved the problem, which may be so for some, but I don't think it has anything to do with the bearings other than how they might effect the trail and/or fork rake. My theory is that either the rake or trail or both is the culprit! That observation is based on over forty years of owning and riding numerous racing bicycles for tens of thousands of miles, the ones that used to be called "ten speed racers". I've owned many of the finest handmade Italian bikes, Guerciotti, Benotto, Botteccia, etc, as well as the best American models, all designed for racing and high speed stability, but some lacking in low speed stability. While one may excel in rock solid stability at forty miles per hour, it might wobble at ten, and if I took my hands off the bars it would become uncontrollable. I've had some that were as stable as if on rails at speed with no hands, I could even stand up on the pedals while zooming down hill, but would put you in the ditch at low speed, while the Benotto which has the correct amount of trail is rock solid at any speed! After many years of cycling and reading numerous articles on rake and trail, I'm convinced that the same applies to motorcycles. Simply put, rake and trail determines how the bike handles. I'm too old to remember which way trail effects what, too much or too little causes wobble, but I do know that it isn't just right you'll experience the wobble at low speeds while not at high speeds, or visa versa. I think Honda made a compromise in order to give this big heavy motorcycle cat like responses and high speed stability, but they sacrificed low speed stability. In the case of the Goldwing, it effects low speeds. The bearings may solve the problem, but I'd bet a nickel that it's the bearings effect on trail that seems to solve the problem for some. Just my thoughts!
 

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This is one of thoses wierd subjects that will usually draw lots of ideas, well here is mine. :) I think you are partly correct. My 05 had the wobble from day one, albeit a slight wobble it was there if you removed your hands. This is the whats is funny, most people say that Metz 880's cause the wobble, well at about 8500 miles I changed to Metzs and the wobble went away completely, I mean straight as arrow steady as a rock all speeds no hands slowing down speeding up it does not wobble, so who knows. I personally think it is one of those things where if the weight and the tires and the suspension and all of the stars are aligned wrong then you will have the bad wobble, if not then it is not as bad. :?
 

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bigmacbkr... Wouldn't the replacement bearing set have to be oblong or at least position the steering stem in a position other than stock to change the rake or trail?

The reason the tappered bearings hide the wobble is you have about 100 times the bearing surface than you do with the OEM ball bearings. 100 times the bearings surface is probably a low guess. More bearing surface equals more drag.

I could be wrong, but I doubt it! LOL.... I haven't been wrong yet today! :wink:

I'm still betting some of the frames are off just enough from the factory to create a wobble in some. I'm not talking about the "weenie" hands off wobble. I'm talking about the hands on wobble with some new GL1800's.
 

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dtbmjax - aka Bartman said:
Red said:
I could be wrong, but I doubt it! LOL.... I haven't been wrong yet today! :wink:
Red, did you sleep at a Holiday Inn Express last night?

Bartman
No, but I did sleep with a Lady that knew someone that worked at Holiday Inn Express. :shock:

Now excuse me while I go back outside and finish mowing the grass! :(
 

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Red said:
dtbmjax - aka Bartman said:
Red said:
I could be wrong, but I doubt it! LOL.... I haven't been wrong yet today! :wink:
Red, did you sleep at a Holiday Inn Express last night?

Bartman
No, but I did sleep with a Lady that knew someone that worked at Holiday Inn Express. :shock:

Now excuse me while I go back outside and finish mowing the grass! :(
You need to live somewhere where the grass dies and the humidity is not 1000% during the summer. :lol:I really thought Florida was covered with swampland or concrete. :lol:
 

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The front end wobble is just one of those things that happens on just about every bike at some speed. Be it motorcycle or bicycle, it happens.

It may be related to the counter steer issue in that it is between the point where centrifugal force and the gyro effect is wavering in the balance.

I have experienced it on Gold Wings, Harleys, Crotch Rockets and 10 to 21 speeds.
 

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This falls in line with my theory:
Rake and trail can be most radically affected by changing the preload on the rear end suspension.

The preload is intended by the manufacturer to offset additional loads from 2 up riding and loading the 'Wing for touring.

I have never read in the owners manual to jack it up to 25 all the time so it will lean farther in the corners and not scrape the pegs as bad.

I will suggest doing so causes two problems, accelerated cupping of the front tire and a nose low attitude that contributes to wobbles. As the tire cups the front end will wobble even with the rear end lowered.

Stop the testosterone from causing the index finger to push the up button so long and I bet it helps any '01 -> '07 GW.

It won't fix every 'Wing, but I think it could be one of those variables that contribute more than some will admit or even entertain.

Bradford
 

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Do choppers ever have a front end wobble ??? I have never experianced it on choppers when I test rode them after working on them.. I don't like the way they go around corners, but it sure felt steady going straight !!!


JMHO 8)
 

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Here's one that never wobbled, even with the neck raked 3/4" and the springer 6" over. The rake and trail just don't matter, concerning wobble, if everything is lined up.

 

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Although I only have 204 miles on my '07, I've experienced NO evidence of any wobble. I have't ridden it without at least holding on to the bars with one hand though.
 

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I think Red is right the frames are out.The bearings slow down reactions.
Properly set up suspension helps a lot to.
Over in England several companys have frame jigs MOTOLINER i think.
Back in 70/80s stok road racers did this to bring them back in line.
 

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I agree with some part of some posts... but why is it that "a few" bikes wobble more than others... I have read here of a couple of GL1800 that
wobbled so much owners sold them... HANDS ON OR OFF THE BARS..It leads me to believe that Honda quality control was lacking.. and their warranty service did nothing to correct the affected bikes.. thus the reason for the someone sueing Honda.. and I really don't blame who ever for doing so.. when you buy a motorcycle that wobbles so much its uncomfortable to ride... I guess Honda thinks its less expensive to just ignore problems.. sorta like the frame crack problem... but maybe customer dissatisfaction/slacking sales is the reason Honda cut back on production on GL1800's ??

cosmic
 

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The Wobble!! revisited!

I have a 2006 with all the bells and whistles! Can you believe, that at $24,000 hard earned greenies I find that "The Damn thing wobbles!"
Now we hear all sorts of reasons why this wobble occurs, however we dont hear from Honda, unless its some lame explanation that its a "Characteristic" Personally, The damn bike should NOT wobble at any speed, for any reason!

They say tyres! The bike was not designed around the tyres. they were matched by Honda to the bike. If the tyres dont work on the bike then Honda did not research tyres properly. LOPS or METZ? Now we have to guess. They cant give us the guff about tyre pressures either. Be honest, how many of you guys dont watch your tyre's, and tyre pressures carefully?

They say forks! Fit a fork brace, fit Progressive springs Why would Honda not recognise a design issue with the forks. Its a heavy bike, they would know this during the design and testing phases.

They say Rake and Trail! WHAT ?? Honda got the fundamental design wrong and they had no idea !!! Thats BS.

They say replace head Bearings.... Good fix, but why??? Why did Honda not do this for the design in the 1st place.

Now we hear that the FRAME is misaligned.... or that the rear suspension adjustment causes it. WHAT!!! What happened to QC, QA and pride in the job!

Now lets get down to the gritty... Honda have designed an awesome machine. Somewhere down the road the design, QA or build methods are flawed. So we Wing riders are riding machines with potentially lethal flaws. Lethal because even at 30mph a tree is a tree, etc, etc. Now think of this, put your wife or sig other on the back and get one of these issues. Go ahead make you kids instant orphans. It may not happen, but murphys law dictates.... Motorcycling is a dangerous sport, so why are Honda ignoring these symptoms and forcing owners to invent home brewed solutions. This IS a Honda Engineering issue.

Is Honda to blame.. Hell yes, that should take full responsibility for the product , and the design flaw issues. If the only way to make them stand up and show that they care about loyal Honda riders is to sue their butts then so be it.

Perhaps if these dangerous flaws start killing riders there will be some action from Honda. How many of us have complained when the fridge vibrates or the AC is suddenly noisy, are those expected 'Characteristics'
Would any of you ignore a wobble in your cars steering, and then settle for the manufacturers claim, that it was a characteristic? Would any of you then go and load up your kids in old shakey for a trip down the I95. I thought not!!


Come on Honda... Fix our bikes!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I think Bradford's response is in line with mine. By raising or lowering the rear end, you effectively change the trail. I do not think that Honda makes some wings slightly out of alignment, or have slip shod assembly, however. One reason is that frame alignment will not cause wobble as we're experiencing, but would cause the bike to veer off to one side of the road or the other. Why do some Wings have more wobble than others? I haven't got a clue, but I'll stick to my theory that trail is the real culprit and it must be set at such a narrow margin of inches that small variables like tire profile and rear suspension angle can change it enough to effect the handling. The Goldwing has 29.15 degrees of rake and 4.3" of trail. As a comparison the Harley Ultras have 26 degrees of rake and 6.2" of trail which is a great difference! My friend's '07 Classic is as stable as a rock at all speeds. Of course there are other things in the mix that contribute to the ride, but I'll still go with rake and trail!
 

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MrBaggins....based on your post logic would dictate you should sell your 06 Wing immediately. You infer it is a wobbling death trap.

To continue riding your Wing would be hypocritical.

How much are you selling it for?
 

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Selling the wing

Actually,

What I am infering is that Honda should step up and recognise the issue. You may have not read the post !! I Said " They say replace head Bearings.... Good fix!" and at 'MY EXPENSE' I have this done!

The honesty issue remains, you pay good money for something U expect it to be fit for use. Wobble means vibration, vibration means stress, stressed items can fail. I would like to reiterate, You pull off the lot with your brand new truck and the brakes pull to the right.. what do you do?

We cant come bleating here when old shakey decides to pull some unauthorised move and throws you off in front of a truck..

Oh, but I forget, we are all expert riders. It simply can't happen. Right???
 
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The history of my wobbles makes me believe it has many causes.
1. Less than 5000 miles had a high speed wobble (+100 mph) when media of road changed (ie asphalt to concrete). Installed a super brace and haven't had it since.
2. At about 9000 miles I got a medium speed wobble (35 to 40 mph, hands on the bars). Installed all-balls bearings and progressive springs front and rear and again wobble disappeared.
3. At about 12K she developed a very low speed wobble when taking left hand turns on uneven surfaces (water gutter "dips" are especially bad). Still does it but at low speeds I am big enough to just muscle through it.

So my experience says there are multiple causes/solutions to the problem.
Your experience may vary.

Pat
 

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This is for MrBaggins06801:

http://www.gl1800riders.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=74845

Seems like you need to take a deep breath and enhance your calm. No bike on the market is perfect and there are manufacturing variance in every vehicle coming off the assembly line. Obviously your bike has a problem and I sympathize with your plight, but ragging on Honda here on the board will do nothing for your situation. Seems like Red has the same problem.

I had a wobble on my 1989 GL-1500. I found that once my tires started cupping, it was going to start wobbling on deceleration regardless of what I did. If I started off with new tires, had the steering head bearing properly torqued, and never let my tire pressure get low, I could avoid any problems until the tires wore out. If you have already installed the All Balls, are all other contributors taken care of too? If not, get them addressed and also see if changing the settings of your rear shocks can help. If not, I would go get your frame alignment checked as a last ditch effort. If that does not help, give all your worldly possessions to charity, move to Tibet, and become a monk because you obviously need spiritualy help dude! :lol:
 

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24 Carat said:
This falls in line with my theory:
Rake and trail can be most radically affected by changing the preload on the rear end suspension.
Bradford
Suspension, rake/trail, etc. All relative.
After I put in the Traxxion springs, all my wobbles were gone; I didn't put in the tapered bearings and I was wearing Metzelers.
I wore out the rear Metzeler at 6,000 miles (riding too fast) and could only get an E3 at the time; I had it replaced.
When I rode home with the front Metz and rear Dunnie, the bike wobbled like a bronc! The shop had closed for the day as I left so I just went home.
I got home and realized that they had set my suspension to 0 for the tire swap. I put it up to 15 and the bike was rock solid again.
 
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