Author Topic: Steering Head Adjustment  (Read 10281 times)

Offline Daytona_Mike

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Re: Steering Head Adjustment
« Reply #15 on: June 06, 2011, 03:46:39 pm »
Tony-ya need new batteries in the flashlight. no one said anything about the axle, nor referred to it.  :chugbeer:
There's play in the upper if there is weight on the wheel....unload the wheel and the play is in the lower bearing.
Doesn't matter, the idea is to remove the play, period.

Logic tells ya if ya loosen the lower pinch bolts and the forks move the same will happen if ya loosen the top ones. 
Why else would you loosen the pinch bolts? To allow the tubes to move in the clamps.
And moving the forks in the upper clamps does what?
Granted it's only the amount of slop taken up in the bearings but it does move.

Cholla,
I do not know how to explain this any simpler to you. Did you not read what I just said a couple of posts ago? Gary F. explains it perfectly.
Let me see if I can help you understand and explain it in a different way.
 Look at MOB's 3rd picture of the rusty bearing. That bearing does not slide  up and down  the shaft like the top bearing does.  When you keep the lower clamps tight on the forks  this keeps that rusty bearing and the lower clamps AND the forks as one solid piece and no matter how much you loosen and tighten the top nut the relationship or length of the forks (or the distance from the front axle to the frame) does not change. Do you agree or not?
If you loosen the lower clamps now the fork tubes are tied to the upper bearing which slides up and down and no longer tied to the non moving lower bearing  and as you loosen or tighten the nut the tubes move up and down and that changes the geometry.  Does that make sense?
I am trying to be nice here and trying to help you.
If you still have fuel in the tank, you are not lost yet
Most motorcycle problems are caused by the nut that connects the handlebars to the saddle

Offline ATC Buckeye

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Re: Steering Head Adjustment
« Reply #16 on: June 06, 2011, 09:14:30 pm »
Wow, mountain out of a molehill here!

Snug it up, ride more, worry less!  8)

Offline Cholla

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Re: Steering Head Adjustment
« Reply #17 on: June 07, 2011, 11:40:15 am »
So, by loosening the lower clamps and tightening the adjustment nut, what have you done? You have moved the clamps closer together. But you haven't raised the forks in their clamps. You have allowed the lower fork clamp to move up the tube as needed and left the upper clamp unmolested as it was from the factory-and put the lower clamp where is should be. The forks haven't moved.
Again, with no weight on the front wheel the weight is on the UPPER bearing, so the BOTTOM bearing is the one not in its race. It is the one which needs to be moved. And to do so properly you must loosen the lower clamp so it can move.
Now everything is back where it was from the factory-and where it should be.
Beware the Black Widows...Feared throughout the land!

Offline MAN OF BLUES

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Re: Steering Head Adjustment
« Reply #18 on: June 07, 2011, 12:24:22 pm »
So, by loosening the lower clamps and tightening the adjustment nut, what have you done? You have moved the clamps closer together. But you haven't raised the forks in their clamps. You have allowed the lower fork clamp to move up the tube as needed and left the upper clamp unmolested as it was from the factory-and put the lower clamp where is should be. The forks haven't moved.
Again, with no weight on the front wheel the weight is on the UPPER bearing, so the BOTTOM bearing is the one not in its race. It is the one which needs to be moved. And to do so properly you must loosen the lower clamp so it can move.
Now everything is back where it was from the factory-and where it should be.

stick to the arena, you can argue all you want there ok?
you are totally wrong here, and you do not listen.
if you loosen the bottom clamps, and tighten the adjuster, pulling the bottom clamp upwards to take the slop out, you have effectively changed the geometry, you have increased the distance between the ground, and the top and bottom clamps.

just sit back, and let the people that do this stuff explain it.....ok?
giving erroneous information, then sitting around arguing your 'believed point', (which is wrong in the firstplace along with the rest lock washer errors and such) , does nothing to help someopne get the job done easily and efficiently.

30 YEARS OF KAW.....

Offline Caffeinated

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Re: Steering Head Adjustment
« Reply #19 on: June 13, 2011, 03:46:17 pm »
With my front tire and bearing change, I just adjusted the steering head since I had a wobble at 50 mph. My question about the steering is that before I adjusted it there was a notch in the very center that the steering would fall into. Now that I have tightened it, the notch has now moved off center to the left. What is the notch? Should it be there? Did I mess something up when tightening? Bearings shot in the stem?

Chris (COG# 8538), Bristow, Va
2012 Black Concours 1400
2011 Silver Concours 1400 (Totaled)
2002 Silver Concours (sold), 06 Vulcan 900LT (sold), 03 VStar 650 (sold)

Offline Equito

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Re: Steering Head Adjustment
« Reply #20 on: June 13, 2011, 03:56:10 pm »
With my front tire and bearing change, I just adjusted the steering head since I had a wobble at 50 mph. My question about the steering is that before I adjusted it there was a notch in the very center that the steering would fall into. Now that I have tightened it, the notch has now moved off center to the left. What is the notch? Should it be there? Did I mess something up when tightening? Bearings shot in the stem?

Notch is what occurs over time when the same roller hits the same spot on the bearing race over and over again.  Accelerated by too-loose adjustment, but will always occur.  Suggests your bearings should be replaced, though if you've moved the notch off-center (most stressed area), you've arguably bought some time, assuming you can live with hitting the notch every now and again.  I'd change them, but I'm hyper about this stuff.

Offline Dan

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Re: Steering Head Adjustment
« Reply #21 on: June 27, 2011, 02:35:31 pm »
And if u do not loosen either bolts, and simply tap the nut, a 1/4 turn and it tightens up...  COuld there be any problems, as now it is riding perfect......  no vabration, no tank slappers, no nothing...??  Could that put extra pressure ont he bearing>?  Or if it was such aminute adjustment, is everyhting fine?

Thanks

QUite a discussion..

Dan

Offline T Cro ®

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Re: Steering Head Adjustment
« Reply #22 on: June 27, 2011, 06:31:18 pm »
And if u do not loosen either bolts, and simply tap the nut, a 1/4 turn and it tightens up...  COuld there be any problems, as now it is riding perfect......  no vibration, no tank slappers, no nothing...??  Could that put extra pressure ont he bearing>?  Or if it was such aminute adjustment, is everyhting fine?

I don't suggest doing it that way again but if it worked for you this go round call it beginners luck and go ride.
Tony P. Crochet
(SOLD) 01 Concours Winner of COG Most Modified in 2010
Ask me about a set of Stick Coils & Harness or Precision Shift Linkage for your C10 Concours

Offline Dan

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Re: Steering Head Adjustment
« Reply #23 on: June 27, 2011, 09:39:09 pm »
Thanks T, worked ok, but had to be very careful, Thanks again for your help, and I am in no way questioning your guys knowledge on here...
Bike seems to be fine, maybe it was such a minor adjustment, it will be ok...
Thanks again for ur help, and I can always use more beginers luck.


 Headed out on Wednesday.

Dan
Dan

Offline Gitbox

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Re: Steering Head Adjustment
« Reply #24 on: July 05, 2011, 03:29:25 pm »
I replaced my head bearings last fall. Should they be re-adjusted after a certain number of miles?
2008 Yamaha FJR1300A
2004 Yamaha FJR1300 (sold)
2000 Kawasaki Concours ZG-1000 (sold)

Offline Cholla

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Re: Steering Head Adjustment
« Reply #25 on: July 06, 2011, 01:30:57 pm »
stick to the arena, you can argue all you want there ok?
you are totally wrong here, and you do not listen.
if you loosen the bottom clamps, and tighten the adjuster, pulling the bottom clamp upwards to take the slop out, you have effectively changed the geometry, you have increased the distance between the ground, and the top and bottom clamps.

just sit back, and let the people that do this stuff explain it.....ok?
giving erroneous information, then sitting around arguing your 'believed point', (which is wrong in the firstplace along with the rest lock washer errors and such) , does nothing to help someopne get the job done easily and efficiently.

How can that be? The bearings and clamp will simply settle into the bearing race in the steering head. The rest of the fork and axle will move with the entire assembly.  Ya know, the upper tube is connected to the lower. The geometry will change by raising or lowering the UPPER tube in its clamp, thereby raising or lowering the ride height.

But, with the lower pinch bolts loose, the forks DON'T MOVE. Just the lower clamp does.

I guess the factory and every mechanic I know does it wrong.
Beware the Black Widows...Feared throughout the land!

Offline Daytona_Mike

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Re: Steering Head Adjustment
« Reply #26 on: July 06, 2011, 08:01:05 pm »
How can that be? The bearings and clamp will simply settle into the bearing race in the steering head. The rest of the fork and axle will move with the entire assembly.  Ya know, the upper tube is connected to the lower. The geometry will change by raising or lowering the UPPER tube in its clamp, thereby raising or lowering the ride height.

But, with the lower pinch bolts loose, the forks DON'T MOVE. Just the lower clamp does.

I guess the factory and every mechanic I know does it wrong.
You still have it backwards.  The factory and every mechanic has it right and understands. You just  do not get it for some reason even though it has been explained to you in very simple terms  you still cant not seem to get it right.

Maybe if I try to explain to you a 3rd and even more simple method you might get it.
Forget you even have fork tubes.   Lets say the Connie only has an upper tripple tree  and a lower triple tree ,
 and they are tied together with  the threaded shaft, the one that is attached to and part of  the bottom triple tree clamp.

The bottom triple tree that has that threaded rod (basically welded together for the purpose of explaining this)  also has the bearing on the bottom, it can never ever move up and down , ever!  That bearing stays in the same spot, the threaded rod stays in the same spot never moving ever.
Now the top triple tree  does move up and down. If it is  up too high you have play in the steering,  tighten down the  stem nuts and that top clamp moves down closer,  further  down that threaded shaft to get rid of play.
 If you loosened both nuts   (there are two nuts, one above and one below the upper triple tree clamp)  which move  that whole upper triple tree clamp up and down  the threaded shaft. The shaft cannot move up and down, it is solid and part of the bottom clamp and the bottom clamp never moves up and down so if the shock tubes are clamped to the bottom and not the top they never ever move.
Think of it this way, the weight of the motorcycle  rests on the lower bearing which is part of the lower triple tree clamp and that threaded rod, none of which can move up and down. You can remove the top triple tree clamp  and throw it away and the bike does not move any lower ( as long as the shock tubes are still clamped to the lower triple tree) Try clamping the fork tubes to the upper triple tree and remove both nuts  and bike slides down the tubes to the ground. The lower clamp  and shaft will still be in the exact same spot because it keeps the same relationship to the goose neck.
I hope this  helps you to understand because I cannot help you any more than this.
If you read this and you are not Cholla be aware that the above is just a very simplified example to explain basic mechanical theory..
« Last Edit: July 06, 2011, 09:08:58 pm by Daytona_Mike »
If you still have fuel in the tank, you are not lost yet
Most motorcycle problems are caused by the nut that connects the handlebars to the saddle

Offline Cholla

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Re: Steering Head Adjustment
« Reply #27 on: July 12, 2011, 12:37:17 pm »
If the threaded rod is connected to the lower clamp and you tighten a nut on that rod, which way will said rod move?It will move UPWARD, taking the fork tubes with it, unless you loosen the pinch bolts.
Beware the Black Widows...Feared throughout the land!

Offline MAN OF BLUES

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Re: Steering Head Adjustment
« Reply #28 on: July 12, 2011, 12:52:28 pm »

30 YEARS OF KAW.....

Offline T Cro ®

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Re: Steering Head Adjustment
« Reply #29 on: July 12, 2011, 04:43:45 pm »
Enough Already!

Both methods work.

Case Closed....
Tony P. Crochet
(SOLD) 01 Concours Winner of COG Most Modified in 2010
Ask me about a set of Stick Coils & Harness or Precision Shift Linkage for your C10 Concours