GL1800Riders Forums banner

1 - 20 of 30 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
160 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I changed my D250's to E III's and now notice the famed wobble! At 4000 miles, Honda says the steering head bearings need to be adjusted and are a normal wear item, so they don't cover the cost under waranty?

Thinking I might as well change out the bearings in hopes it will be the solution!

Would like to hear from those that have experience with this

Thanks
 

·
Legend in His Own Mind
Joined
·
4,671 Posts
Is that 4K miles on your bike or just the E III's? Probably an out of round or improperly balanced tire. If it's the bike I doubt the steering head bearings are worn out at only 4K miles. On the otherhand installing the highly regarded All Balls steering head bearings or another tapered bearing assembly would not be a bad move anyway. This is a very controversial topic that produces a tremendous amount of debate with a lot of strongly held but differing opinions, so get ready. I won't say mine doesn't wobble under any condition because thats just too unbelievable for some others to swallow. :p Terry
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
160 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Bike only has 400 miles. Got it new in May 2006 as a leftover. Had some vandalism on the original tires and since the change, I get a wobble at around 30-35MPH.

Didn't have it with the factory tires!
 

·
Chard Member
Joined
·
13,072 Posts
I imagine it's the front tire. I had a set of E3's that wobbled even worse than a set of Metzelers I tried.

If it didn't wobble before the tires, it shouldn't wobble after.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19,385 Posts
ALL BALLS BEARINGS $40, LABOR $250
WORTH IT? EVERY PENNY.

Your bike should not wobble. Even though the Dunflop D250 does not grip as well as others,it rarely wobbles. Maybe this is why Honda uses it as OEM
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,328 Posts
Let me try to understand: No wobble, swap tires, then wobble. Logically, how could it be anything other than the tires? Nothing else - including the bearings - has changed.

It got to be either the tires or an incorrect installation/balancing, doesn't it?

I'm a computer programmer. When I have a program that was working fine, then something changes and it quits working fine, the first thing I look at is what changed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17,091 Posts
I agree with Red, up to a point. If it did not wobble before the tire change it should not wobble after. The problem may be with the tires themselves (seems VERY odd to me that there could be so many "bad" tires out there for the GL1800), or the installation of those tires on the rims. The tire realted insall variables are balance and the quality of the bead seating job at either or both front and rear. The quality of the wheel install job back onto the bike at either front or rear can be considered too.

There is a rather straight foward and simple test for the steering head bearings. If they are loose at only 6,000 miles then that is NOT normal wear, but rather an indication tha the bearing races were not full seated to begin with and have settled in with use. A search of this site should reveal teh simple steering head bearng test procedure as outlined in the service manual. The test requires a spring scale such as a trigger pull scale and some means to support the front end off of the ground. The OE bearings should be good as new at onl 6,000 miles.

The tapered bearings evidently work very well at covering up the symptom of the underlying problem, but the problem will still be there if that matters to you. If you rely upon teh dealer to do your service work, then you are their mercy regarding the quality of wrenching and maybe the taper bearing cover-up plan would be the best way to go. If you do your own wrenching, there is quite a bit you can check in a precess of elimination -- I would start with visual inspecion of bead seats and out of round of both tires, then balance and installation.


prs
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
25 Posts
Wobble Solution

Hi Fooddum:
Skydog here.
I have an 03 and had the wobble you speak of. I tried retightening (Honda service techs) the front triple tree bearings a lot. To no avail.

The solution for me was to bite the bullet and have the tapered bearings installed. Seems Honda chose to put in round bearings and the race (Thing that holds all the balls in place) is made of plastic.

Once the new tapered bearings were installed all wobble went away.

The 03 wing is my daily vehicle and used for long trips as well. It has over 40K on it now and the bearings were a welcome but recent addition.

Someday before somebody gets hurt I hope Honda owns up to the front end wobble and fixes it.

Scott aka [email protected]
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
270 Posts
tires

Foodum01,

I was running Bridgestones and had no sign of a wobble.

I rode out West and needed a set of tires on the road, I couldn't get Bridgestones, I had a dealer instal Metzler 880's. With 700 miles on the tires, they wobbled so bad, I had to have them replaced. That dealer also told me that the steering head bearings needed tightening.

I went to a different Honda dealer who checked out the bearings and said they were not the problem. He put on a set of E3's and the wobble was gone.

I maintain air pressure at 41 lbs front and 42 lbs rear, no cupping, no noise and no problems for 14, 000 miles.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,374 Posts
William Anzik said:
Let me try to understand: No wobble, swap tires, then wobble. Logically, how could it be anything other than the tires? Nothing else - including the bearings - has changed. It got to be either the tires or an incorrect installation/balancing, doesn't it?
You're not suposed to think logically or even think for yourself, William. Just place your faith in testimonials. It's so much easier.
fooddum01 said:
Thinking I might as well change out the bearings in hopes it will be the solution!
Hope is not a plan.

Stu
 

·
Vendor
Joined
·
2,367 Posts
Pigeon Roost said:
The problem may be with the tires themselves (seems VERY odd to me that there could be so many "bad" tires out there for the GL1800), or the installation of those tires on the rims. The tire realted insall variables are balance and the quality of the bead seating job at either or both front and rear. The quality of the wheel install job back onto the bike at either front or rear can be considered too.
I can tell you for a fact, that in my 25 years in the MC biz, no other model of bike gets "bad" tires, except for the Goldwing. I find that odd.

Dunlop, Metzler, Pirelli, Michelin, Avon, Bridgestone, Maxxis, etc, etc, etc, all make tires that go onto every model, size, and type of bike and work great, but when any one of those companys puts a tire on a Goldwing, somehow, about 50% of them are bad. :?

As for how they are mounted, that's basically 1% from impossible to screw up. You fill the tire with air, and it goes "SNAP!!! SNAP!!!" when each bead seats. It is loud enough to scare people who aren't expecting it. That's it. You aren't going to do a better job by repeating that several times.

I have personally mounted thousands of tires on bikes, and watched tens of thousands get mounted on racing wheels.

I have been in tire tents at World Superbike, AMA, WERA etc. Two snaps is all that is required to know the tire is mounted properly.

For balancing, again, no dramatic process is required. If you question the bike shop's computer wheel balancer, have the tech stick the axle through the wheel and put the wheel on a pair $9 jack stands. If the wheel is in balance, it won't move. THAT'S IT.

Go to Daytona and watch how they balance tires for bikes that have 2X the HP, weigh 1/3, and go 2X the top speed of a GL18. They have a stand that costs $200, some axles, and some wheel weights. There are no computer wheel balancers at a race track.

Do you think a poorly balanced tire is more critical at 40mph or 190mph?

No one ever goes to the trouble of dismounting and remounting the tires to get it exactly positioned so that you use the least amount of wheel weights. That isn't what causes bikes to wobble.

If you are going to these lengths to make your GL not wobble, you are grasping at straws.

Different tires do have different characteristics. This guy's steering head could very likely need adjustment, and the stock tires mask it. A different brand may just let the symptom exhibit itself.

We have found at least 7 factors that make a GL have the decel wobble. One of them can cause it, but typically, it's a stack up of several factors.
 

·
Vendor
Joined
·
2,367 Posts
Re: Wobble Solution

Skydog said:
Seems Honda chose to put in round bearings and the race (Thing that holds all the balls in place) is made of plastic.
This isn't true... someone didn't explain this to you properly. The bearings are ball bearings. The races are hardened steel. There is no such thing as plastic steering head bearings.

The ball bearings are equally positioned around the race by a plastic cage. It has nothing to do with the bike wobbling, or the bearings being bad. I have never ever seen the plastic cage wear, or fail.

The plastic cage makes it fast and easy to assemble the steering head.

In the old days, the balls floated loose in the races, and you had to fill the entire race with balls. You used grease to hold all of the balls in place while you assembled the steering head. That was a PITA!
 

·
Vendor
Joined
·
2,367 Posts
Re: Wobble Solution

Skydog said:
Someday before somebody gets hurt I hope Honda owns up to the front end wobble and fixes it.
We did a survey here on this forum recently, and not only could not find anyone who had ever crashed from the wobble, we couldn't find anyone who had ever even HEARD of anyone crashing because of it.

With 60,000+ GL1800s on the road, and with an average of 50,000 miles per bike, that's roughly 3 BILLION miles logged on wings without anyone getting hurt for "The Wobble".

I don't think anyone at Honda is going to loose sleep over this. They will tell you to keep your hands on the bars. :wink:

Do I think the wing should wobble, even under decel conditions between 45 and 35 mph when the driver takes his hands off of the handlebars? No, I don't think it should. It wouldn't cost Honda much, if anything, to wobble-proof the wing, but until it's a safety issue, it isn't likely to happen.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
381 Posts
Read the sig and weep ;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,328 Posts
Stu_O said:
[quote="William Anzik":7kmllm8k]Let me try to understand: No wobble, swap tires, then wobble. Logically, how could it be anything other than the tires? Nothing else - including the bearings - has changed. It got to be either the tires or an incorrect installation/balancing, doesn't it?
You're not suposed to think logically or even think for yourself, William. Just place your faith in testimonials. It's so much easier.

Stu[/quote:7kmllm8k]Sorry, lost my head for a moment. :lol:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
118 Posts
Well I never had the wobble on my 04 with the dunlops or the bridgestones but at 24k i put metzlers on and there it was. Replaced the front tire and no difference. Gonna put hte all balls in and see. I dont want to blame the tire anymore. I feel that it is in the steering and just covered up by certain tire brands myself.
 

·
Chard Member
Joined
·
13,072 Posts
Max McAllister said:
I can tell you for a fact, that in my 25 years in the MC biz, no other model of bike gets "bad" tires, except for the Goldwing. I find that odd.
You might want to change that to GL1800 Goldwing, not Goldwing. Past Wings had very little trouble with tires.

What did Honda do to the GL1800 to make it too tire sensitive? Was this problem created because they stiffened the frame too much on a 900 pound two wheeler?

Never owned a new wobbling Goldwing in the last 26 years either. At least not until the GL1800 came along.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,928 Posts
Max, not to disagree with you on the tires, but I was told by an Avon engineer that they think the gl1800 should be running on bias tires but Honda demanded radials. I have no idea if that would make any difference but was what I was told.

I do know that my 06 came out of the box with the wobble and when I changed to Avons wobble gone and been gone for over 7,000 miles.
 

·
Vendor
Joined
·
2,367 Posts
Dive Master said:
Max, not to disagree with you on the tires, but I was told by an Avon engineer that they think the gl1800 should be running on bias tires but Honda demanded radials. I have no idea if that would make any difference but was what I was told.

I do know that my 06 came out of the box with the wobble and when I changed to Avons wobble gone and been gone for over 7,000 miles.
That would make sense... but since it's possible make a radial tire for an 18 wheeler that pulls 80,000 pounds, I would suspect some company should be able to reliably make a suitable radial tire for 1400 pound two-wheeler.

:wink:

I want somebody to bring me a bike that wobbles with your hands ON the bars. That's one I want to fix.

:)
 

·
Vendor
Joined
·
2,367 Posts
Red said:
You might want to change that to GL1800 Goldwing, not Goldwing. Past Wings had very little trouble with tires.
You are right (never imagined I would say that to Red... :lol: ), but I should have said GL1800.
 
1 - 20 of 30 Posts
Top