LT front end shake as i slow to a stop. - BMW Luxury Touring Community
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post #1 of 46 Old Dec 13th, 2018, 7:39 am Thread Starter
ian
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LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

My 2004 K1200LT has developed a front end wobble or shake as I slow down and just before I stop. Its manageable when I'm alone on the bike but accentuated when I am riding with a pillion to almost scary level.
My first thought was to tighten up the rear suspension preload but this has made no difference.
Any thoughts on correcting this - could it be as easy a fix as a new front tire which the dealer has suggested. Note the current tire, a Metzeler ME 880, still looks good and handling and ride is perfect at other times and speeds. The rear has a new Bridgestone.
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post #2 of 46 Old Dec 13th, 2018, 7:57 am
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

back tyre might be flat, anyway it will be a tyre likely the front recheck both pressures. was it there before you fitted the bridgestone? is the rear the correct type approved for the LT you dont give any reference to it. tyre fitters can stretch the bead if not careful when fitting this will cause a wobble

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post #3 of 46 Old Dec 13th, 2018, 8:25 am
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

You can also check to see if the front wheel is properly installed and if the front wheel bearings are worn out.
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post #4 of 46 Old Dec 14th, 2018, 12:26 am Thread Starter
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

Tyre pressures are correct and the rear tyre is correct.
Is there a quick and easy way to diagnose the front wheel bearings?
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post #5 of 46 Old Dec 14th, 2018, 7:25 am
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

on centre stand, lift front wheel off the ground with a jack either pry the pads out so they are not touching the disc or remove them and spin the wheel you will hear a rumble and feel it, I doubt though this is your problem but still worth checking, water pressure cleaners is what stuffs em. while it is free wheeling observe any movement in the tyre, you might try balance beads as well i dont recommend them but they are widely used.

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post #6 of 46 Old Dec 14th, 2018, 7:45 am
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ian View Post
My 2004 K1200LT has developed a front end wobble or shake as I slow down and just before I stop. Its manageable when I'm alone on the bike but accentuated when I am riding with a pillion to almost scary level.
My first thought was to tighten up the rear suspension preload but this has made no difference.
Any thoughts on correcting this - could it be as easy a fix as a new front tire which the dealer has suggested. Note the current tire, a Metzeler ME 880, still looks good and handling and ride is perfect at other times and speeds. The rear has a new Bridgestone.
Does this happen both with brake application and without? Or only if using the front and/or rear brake?

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post #7 of 46 Old Dec 14th, 2018, 9:17 am
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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on centre stand, lift front wheel off the ground with a jack either pry the pads out so they are not touching the disc or remove them and spin the wheel you will hear a rumble and feel it, I doubt though this is your problem but still worth checking, water pressure cleaners is what stuffs em. while it is free wheeling observe any movement in the tyre, you might try balance beads as well i dont recommend them but they are widely used.
Balance beads would have no effect when riding slow and coming to a stop. Warped rotors possibly, loose wheel/bearings. Voyager asked a question I decided not to seeing the front and rear brakes are linked and I was not 100% sure that applying the rear did not apply the front brakes as an isolated test. I know applying the front does apply the rear so without knowing that, suggesting that test may not provide the desired feedback. A tire that is bad enough to cause a wobble at slow speed breaking should be visibly, oddly worn or damaged. Cupping is very visible but normally doesn't cause this type of issue in my experience. Something is loose or badly worn or possibly one of the rotors is warped if it is only when applying the brakes. A test ride and examination by someone more knowledgeable may be in order, not necessarily a dealer. If it is more of a shake than a front end wobble, possible binding in the drive shaft u-joints as a SWAG? Final drive bearing? is there any oil leakage from the FD?.

Checking the front wheel for play. Once you get it up on the center stand and have the engine blocked to keep the front elevated ( or have someone hold down the back end cautiously so not to push the bike forward off the stand while you are looking at it), as stated, gently pry the brake pads away to allow free movement or remove the brake calipers completely. Make sure the wheel is properly tightened. Loosen the pinch bolts, Loosen the axle bolt and then re-tighten in 2 steps. First to 14 Ft-Lbs, then tighten to 22 Ft-Lbs and make sure the wheel still spins freely. Then tighten the left side pinch bolt to 15.5 Ft-Lbs. Put the bike back on the ground. Apply the front brakes and pump the front forks to several times to center the axle. Tighten the right side pinch bolt to 15.5 Ft Lb then put it back on the CS with the front off the ground. Check at the top of the wheel and see if there is any noticeable movement side to side. You can do this before checking the axle tightness also. Between the forks would be the easiest place to see relational movement. Rotate the wheel some and check several times around the wheel. If there is any play, replace the wheel bearings if tightening the axle had no effect. If there is no play or grinding noise, ride it again to see if re-tightening the wheel properly had any positive effect.

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2001 K1200LTI – Champagne (current ride) Lazy Susan
1998 R1100RT – Never should have sold it
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post #8 of 46 Old Dec 14th, 2018, 10:41 am
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

Have you examined the tele lever, especially the end where the shock attaches?

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post #9 of 46 Old Dec 14th, 2018, 1:06 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

With all this careful examination, I would also look hard at the back half, final drive by trying to wiggle the rear wheel, and if it does move you have to see if it is the final drive or the rear fork on its pivot bearings. The rear fork preload is often overlooked and needs to be checked every few years.

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post #10 of 46 Old Dec 14th, 2018, 3:18 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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Originally Posted by beech View Post
With all this careful examination, I would also look hard at the back half, final drive by trying to wiggle the rear wheel, and if it does move you have to see if it is the final drive or the rear fork on its pivot bearings. The rear fork preload is often overlooked and needs to be checked every few years.
Seems like the steering damper should be checked.
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post #11 of 46 Old Dec 14th, 2018, 4:34 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

I bought a '09 K1200LT in March of '17 with 9K miles. It had a new 880 on the rear and I assume the original 880 on the front. Rode it 500 miles home and didn't notice any steering problem. Immediately replaced the front 880 with a 888 and noticed a front wobble slowing down from 40mph (could not take both hands off the bars without a tank slapper). Looked here and tried different remedies with no relief. Rode the bike to Arkansas in August of '17 and found tire separation on rear 880. Only tire I could find was a Shinko and still had the wobble. In September of '18 replaced front tire with Bridgestone and rear with Shinko and no wobble. I know this is anecdotal but my solution was to get ride of the Metzler front tire (and yes the balance was checked). As long as I run at least 38lbs in front and 42lbs in rear I have no wobble what so ever.
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post #12 of 46 Old Dec 14th, 2018, 11:14 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

I bought my 2000 LT and rode it home from Colorado to Oregon 3 years ago. Shortly after getting home I replaced the slippery rear Metzler with a Shinko. 4000 miles later I developed the same wobble or weave you describe. I replaced the rear Shinko with the properly rated Avon storm on the back and almost have never had any issues since.
Just my 2 cents worth. In My case the rear tire was the issue.
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post #13 of 46 Old Dec 15th, 2018, 2:20 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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Originally Posted by bmwcoolk1200 View Post
Balance beads would have no effect when riding slow and coming to a stop. Warped rotors possibly, loose wheel/bearings. Voyager asked a question I decided not to seeing the front and rear brakes are linked and I was not 100% sure that applying the rear did not apply the front brakes as an isolated test. I know applying the front does apply the rear so without knowing that, suggesting that test may not provide the desired feedback. A tire that is bad enough to cause a wobble at slow speed breaking should be visibly, oddly worn or damaged. Cupping is very visible but normally doesn't cause this type of issue in my experience. Something is loose or badly worn or possibly one of the rotors is warped if it is only when applying the brakes. A test ride and examination by someone more knowledgeable may be in order, not necessarily a dealer. If it is more of a shake than a front end wobble, possible binding in the drive shaft u-joints as a SWAG? Final drive bearing? is there any oil leakage from the FD?.

Checking the front wheel for play. Once you get it up on the center stand and have the engine blocked to keep the front elevated ( or have someone hold down the back end cautiously so not to push the bike forward off the stand while you are looking at it), as stated, gently pry the brake pads away to allow free movement or remove the brake calipers completely. Make sure the wheel is properly tightened. Loosen the pinch bolts, Loosen the axle bolt and then re-tighten in 2 steps. First to 14 Ft-Lbs, then tighten to 22 Ft-Lbs and make sure the wheel still spins freely. Then tighten the left side pinch bolt to 15.5 Ft-Lbs. Put the bike back on the ground. Apply the front brakes and pump the front forks to several times to center the axle. Tighten the right side pinch bolt to 15.5 Ft Lb then put it back on the CS with the front off the ground. Check at the top of the wheel and see if there is any noticeable movement side to side. You can do this before checking the axle tightness also. Between the forks would be the easiest place to see relational movement. Rotate the wheel some and check several times around the wheel. If there is any play, replace the wheel bearings if tightening the axle had no effect. If there is no play or grinding noise, ride it again to see if re-tightening the wheel properly had any positive effect.
I believe using the front or rear level still biases the braking towards the end in use. However, the main thing was to see if this was related to the brakes or not. If related to braking, then I would look at things like wheel bearings or FD pivot bearings where the force from braking, especially if the rotors are a little uneven, could cause the parts to slop around and cause a weave. If the problem is not related to braking, then I suspect it is a tire with belt damage or uneven tread causing the issue. Just trying to get an indicator whether to look at tires or mechanical play somewhere.
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post #14 of 46 Old Dec 15th, 2018, 2:21 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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Originally Posted by djmellor View Post
Seems like the steering damper should be checked. https://youtu.be/Llj1rsUJd04
Steering damper has no affect on this problem. It only comes into play during rapid rotation of the steering, not slow oscillations.

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post #15 of 46 Old Dec 15th, 2018, 2:59 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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Originally Posted by Voyager View Post
I believe using the front or rear level still biases the braking towards the end in use. However, the main thing was to see if this was related to the brakes or not. If related to braking, then I would look at things like wheel bearings or FD pivot bearings where the force from braking, especially if the rotors are a little uneven, could cause the parts to slop around and cause a weave. If the problem is not related to braking, then I suspect it is a tire with belt damage or uneven tread causing the issue. Just trying to get an indicator whether to look at tires or mechanical play somewhere.
I agree with all of that, just not ever owning or riding a servo brake model, I wasn't going to venture there not being able to clearly distinguish if the front or rear brake exacerbates the issue separately. There are others on this forum like you that have a better feel for that particular system and how to address it. I will add if I feel I can to what is discovered relating to that aspect. I knew someone would ask the question though.

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post #16 of 46 Old Dec 17th, 2018, 3:45 pm
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Cool Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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Steering damper has no affect on this problem. It only comes into play during rapid rotation of the steering, not slow oscillations.
Voyager is correct that steering damper does not inhibit left-right turns of wheel during normal turning, but only dampens rapid oscillation of steering (speed wobble/tank slapper.) It sounds like that may be what Ian is experiencing, though--rapid, scary oscillation, and that's exactly what the dampening is designed to prevent. It's easy to check if the dampener works--review the video--and pretty easy to fix if it doesn't work.

Of course, one should always review what, if any, changes have been made to the machine prior to the issue developing. Clearly, if you change the tire(s) and then get a wobble, checking the tire(s) should be first on the list. If you didn't change anything and the issue developed, it's likely due to deterioration or failure of something on the machine. It sounds like it's been riding fine for a while, and only recently manifested this wobble on slowing to a stop.

Reviewing this forum, I see several lengthy discussions of the issue going back to the mid-2000s. Frequently tires, tire wear, tire balancing, tire pressure, are implicated. Also common is the steering damper, and less common are steering rake (2005+ models), rear drive alignment, etc.

If you trust your mechanic, seems like changing the tire is best guess. I'd still check the damper.
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post #17 of 46 Old Dec 17th, 2018, 4:42 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

Don't narrow your thinking to just looking at one thing. This can be a combination of several problems that just group together to cause the bike to start handling poorly. Also with tank slappers do not discount what was mentioned in the thread...hard/firm grip on the handle bars. Riders need to relax, relax shoulders, arms and have an easy grip on the hand grips. Let the bike do its thing. (California Superbike School).
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post #18 of 46 Old Dec 17th, 2018, 5:51 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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Originally Posted by beech View Post
Don't narrow your thinking to just looking at one thing. This can be a combination of several problems that just group together to cause the bike to start handling poorly. Also with tank slappers do not discount what was mentioned in the thread...hard/firm grip on the handle bars. Riders need to relax, relax shoulders, arms and have an easy grip on the hand grips. Let the bike do its thing. (California Superbike School).
Looks like we are reading the problem statement differently. I heard nothing that sounded like tank slapper. I heard a wobble or shake that occurs right before he stops. Sounds like we need the OP to describe the problem more specifically with actual speeds. If the problem is occurring right before he stops, then it isn’t a tank slapper and the steering damper is not a factor unless it is binding such that the steering can't move freely.
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post #19 of 46 Old Dec 17th, 2018, 9:18 pm Thread Starter
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Thank you everyone for your posts and support. Just to clarify what is most bewildering is that at any other time the handling is perfect. It’s just as I’m slowing to a stop and accentuated when I have a pillion. I can’t see any wear or cupping on the front tire. I am aware that rear tire wear causes this problem but my rear tire is brand new and looks fine. It’s not linked to braking have checked that out. I have ordered a new front metzeler 888 seems 880 no longer available. I’m summary what would you sugggest I instruct the workshop to check prior to fitting a new tire. Could it have anything to do with my Wilber’s suspension and why is a pillion accentuating the wobble ?
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post #20 of 46 Old Dec 17th, 2018, 9:35 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ian View Post
Thank you everyone for your posts and support. Just to clarify what is most bewildering is that at any other time the handling is perfect. It’s just as I’m slowing to a stop and accentuated when I have a pillion. I can’t see any wear or cupping on the front tire. I am aware that rear tire wear causes this problem but my rear tire is brand new and looks fine. It’s not linked to braking have checked that out. I have ordered a new front metzeler 888 seems 880 no longer available. I’m summary what would you sugggest I instruct the workshop to check prior to fitting a new tire. Could it have anything to do with my Wilber’s suspension and why is a pillion accentuating the wobble ?
Have you checked to see if one of your wheels is bent? Can you have someone hang out the window of a car and follow taking a video of the back and the front when it is wobbling. That may reveal something.

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post #21 of 46 Old Dec 18th, 2018, 1:31 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ian View Post
Thank you everyone for your posts and support. Just to clarify what is most bewildering is that at any other time the handling is perfect. It’s just as I’m slowing to a stop and accentuated when I have a pillion. I can’t see any wear or cupping on the front tire. I am aware that rear tire wear causes this problem but my rear tire is brand new and looks fine. It’s not linked to braking have checked that out. I have ordered a new front metzeler 888 seems 880 no longer available. I’m summary what would you sugggest I instruct the workshop to check prior to fitting a new tire. Could it have anything to do with my Wilber’s suspension and why is a pillion accentuating the wobble ?
You need to be more specific. At what speed does the shake occur? 60 mph? 30? 10? Is it a very fast shake? Like a tank slipper? Or a slow shake? Does it occur with the brakes applied? Without the brakes? Does pulling in the clutch make any difference?

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post #22 of 46 Old Dec 18th, 2018, 1:35 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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You need to be more specific. At what speed does the shake occur? 60 mph? 30? 10? Is it a very fast shake? Like a tank slipper? Or a slow shake? Does it occur with the brakes applied? Without the brakes? Does pulling in the clutch make any difference?
I interpret that to mean in the last 10 ft of a stop the front feels wobbly. Maybe not enough of a preload adjustment when the pillion is aboard and the suspension is sagging too much. Note: I am not making any statement about how much the pillion weighs.
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post #23 of 46 Old Dec 18th, 2018, 7:25 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jzeiler View Post
I interpret that to mean in the last 10 ft of a stop the front feels wobbly. Maybe not enough of a preload adjustment when the pillion is aboard and the suspension is sagging too much. Note: I am not making any statement about how much the pillion weighs.
He mentions Wilbers for suspension. First questions on that would be were they set up for you and your pillion or did you get them from someone else set up for them and their weight. Worse with the pillion so possibly again, a binding u-joint because the angle is worse with additional weight?

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post #24 of 46 Old Dec 18th, 2018, 7:39 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

I had a similar problem with my 2000 LT. I replaced the worn Metzler ME 880 front tire with a new Metzler ME 888 tire. The LT ran smooth when it had the Metzler ME 880 on the front. The LT front end shook the first time I rode over 30 mph with the ME 888. I checked everything I could think of on the LT and didn't find any obvious problems. I then raised the front end of the LT enough so that the front tire could rotate freely. I then placed a ring stand with a fixed horizontal pointer just almost touching the bottom of the tire. When I rotated the tire by hand, one spot on the tire consistently rubbed the pointer indicating that it was "out of round". I returned the tire and got full credit, ordered a Michelin Road Pilot 4 GT and no more front end shake. I had noticed that the defective tire was made in Brazil, if that means anything. I have always inflated the front tire at 42 psi, and the rear at 48 psi, and always had Metzlers ME 880's front and rear, front average over 10,000 miles, and rear average over 8,000 miles, and always replaced well before necessay. When I replaced my rear Metzler ME 880 tire, I replaced it with a Bridgestone Battlax tire. (Metzlers?)

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post #25 of 46 Old Dec 19th, 2018, 10:15 am
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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Originally Posted by jzeiler View Post
I interpret that to mean in the last 10 ft of a stop the front feels wobbly. Maybe not enough of a preload adjustment when the pillion is aboard and the suspension is sagging too much. Note: I am not making any statement about how much the pillion weighs.
That was how I interpreted it initially also, but when someone mentioned the steering damper, I read it again and realized that it was a very vague description and could be interpreted many ways. If we are talking the last 10 feet of a stop, then the steering damper is easily ruled out. If we are talking slowing from 50 MPH, then not so much. Context is everything.

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post #26 of 46 Old Dec 19th, 2018, 10:20 am
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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Originally Posted by Captain_Wayne View Post
I had a similar problem with my 2000 LT. I replaced the worn Metzler ME 880 front tire with a new Metzler ME 888 tire. The LT ran smooth when it had the Metzler ME 880 on the front. The LT front end shook the first time I rode over 30 mph with the ME 888. I checked everything I could think of on the LT and didn't find any obvious problems. I then raised the front end of the LT enough so that the front tire could rotate freely. I then placed a ring stand with a fixed horizontal pointer just almost touching the bottom of the tire. When I rotated the tire by hand, one spot on the tire consistently rubbed the pointer indicating that it was "out of round". I returned the tire and got full credit, ordered a Michelin Road Pilot 4 GT and no more front end shake. I had noticed that the defective tire was made in Brazil, if that means anything. I have always inflated the front tire at 42 psi, and the rear at 48 psi, and always had Metzlers ME 880's front and rear, front average over 10,000 miles, and rear average over 8,000 miles, and always replaced well before necessay. When I replaced my rear Metzler ME 880 tire, I replaced it with a Bridgestone Battlax tire. (Metzlers?)
I had a similar problem with my first 888. I never really noticed the LT shaking or vibrating and found my high spot by accident. I was raising the front end to do something such as cleaning the wheel, I forget what now, and had the tire raised just off the floor. I then spun the tire and it spun and then stopped. I did it a couple more times and it always stopped at the same spot. I took a closer look and the tire had a bulge in the tread that was clearly worn more than the surrounding tread and was obviously a couple mm higher as it hit the floor each revolution. I had 9,000 miles at the time and Metzeler actually sent me a replacement tire. I have yet to mount the replacement, but did buy another 888 as I didn’t want to wait on Metzler so I now have two 888s to run. I hope this was an isolated incident, but I have heard enough reports now about the 888, which I think is made in Brazil, that i am suspicious that Metz has a quality control issue with that manufacturing location.

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post #27 of 46 Old Dec 19th, 2018, 10:23 am
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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Originally Posted by bmwcoolk1200 View Post
He mentions Wilbers for suspension. First questions on that would be were they set up for you and your pillion or did you get them from someone else set up for them and their weight. Worse with the pillion so possibly again, a binding u-joint because the angle is worse with additional weight?
Shocks should not make a bike wobble when stopping in a straight line.

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post #28 of 46 Old Dec 19th, 2018, 10:43 am
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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Shocks should not make a bike wobble when stopping in a straight line.
They are other than stock shocks so if they were built for a lighter pair of riders, the sag may be excessive as John alluded to making the u-joint angle more severe. It may be a stretch for a binding u-joint being affected by the amount of sag as the issue and it is more likely a tire issue but wouldn't that be about the same regardless of suspension loading if the tire had a bulge? Never had that issue yet so no real world experience. So far, my LT has been a real stable ride in all situations through 3 sets of tires.

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post #29 of 46 Old Dec 19th, 2018, 11:25 am
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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Originally Posted by bmwcoolk1200 View Post
They are other than stock shocks so if they were built for a lighter pair of riders, the sag may be excessive as John alluded to making the u-joint angle more severe. It may be a stretch for a binding u-joint being affected by the amount of sag as the issue and it is more likely a tire issue but wouldn't that be about the same regardless of suspension loading if the tire had a bulge? Never had that issue yet so no real world experience. So far, my LT has been a real stable ride in all situations through 3 sets of tires.
It is hard to say without knowing more precisely what the bike is doing. I took shake and wobble to mean a side to side motion. If it really is a variation in acceleration as is the case with “warped” brake rotors, then a binding u-joint could cause the same feel as “warped” brake rotors, but I would describe that as a pulsing, rather than shaking or wobble.

The problem description is not sufficiently precise to enable much long distance troubleshooting.

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post #30 of 46 Old Dec 19th, 2018, 12:35 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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Originally Posted by Voyager View Post
It is hard to say without knowing more precisely what the bike is doing. I took shake and wobble to mean a side to side motion. If it really is a variation in acceleration as is the case with “warped” brake rotors, then a binding u-joint could cause the same feel as “warped” brake rotors, but I would describe that as a pulsing, rather than shaking or wobble.

The problem description is not sufficiently precise to enable much long distance troubleshooting.
We all do our best at remote diagnosis based on the information provided. Agreed, we need a little more to narrow down the possibilities.

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post #31 of 46 Old Dec 19th, 2018, 8:54 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

I have posted my experiences with the Metzler 888 in prior posts. All I will say is I bought a Bridgestone BT for the front and the shake is gone. GONE! I have put up with the front end shake for several years and in one day it's gone. I suspected all of the aforementioned potential issues and have replaced everything but the tire brand. All to no avail. But get rid of the Metzler and bike is like NEW.

Will my tire last 10,000 miles? No. Oh well, I love riding my bike again. I will never buy anything made in Brazil again.

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post #32 of 46 Old Feb 12th, 2019, 2:29 am Thread Starter
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

Hi all and thank you for your interesting and thoughtful input.
I decided to start with the most obvious being the front tire which I replaced with a Metzeler 888 Ultra Marathon. (Read all the adverse reports but here in deepest darkest Africa I was limited choice wise.)
Got back onto the bike and it was doing the same thing.
Checked the pressure and realised the dealership had pumped to factory setting. Upped it to 2.8 Bar and seems sorted.
Just need to try with a pillion and see if she is still stable.
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post #33 of 46 Old Feb 15th, 2019, 11:39 am
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

Ian,

I also have and always had the Metzelers.
Believe I wrote an extensive thread on this very issue when I first bough the bike 6 years ago.
I bought the HyperPro steering damper, and the problem was still there.

The culprit is really the rake of the bike. The last gen LT's have I think 1 or 2 degrees steeper rake angle.
if you change the fork bridge with one from a previous gen, the bike will be more stable, but will feel heavier.

In the end, it's all in the tire pressures when the tires are new.
As the front tire gets older, it gets worn on one side only because of the camber of the road. That'll cause the oscillations mainly when braking from 80kph if you let go of the handlebars. So I don't.

Happy ridin'

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post #34 of 46 Old Feb 15th, 2019, 1:53 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

You know its funny but the steering head angle on a 99-2004 is 63.2 degrees while the angle on the 05 + is 63.0. Not a huge difference.

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post #35 of 46 Old Feb 15th, 2019, 2:11 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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Originally Posted by jzeiler View Post
You know its funny but the steering head angle on a 99-2004 is 63.2 degrees while the angle on the 05 + is 63.0. Not a huge difference.
Is the trail much different?

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post #36 of 46 Old Feb 15th, 2019, 2:13 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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Originally Posted by mondrage View Post
Ian,

I also have and always had the Metzelers.
Believe I wrote an extensive thread on this very issue when I first bough the bike 6 years ago.
I bought the HyperPro steering damper, and the problem was still there.

The culprit is really the rake of the bike. The last gen LT's have I think 1 or 2 degrees steeper rake angle.
if you change the fork bridge with one from a previous gen, the bike will be more stable, but will feel heavier.

In the end, it's all in the tire pressures when the tires are new.
As the front tire gets older, it gets worn on one side only because of the camber of the road. That'll cause the oscillations mainly when braking from 80kph if you let go of the handlebars. So I don't.

Happy ridin'
Braking a motorcycle from 80 kph with one’s hands off the bar is the domain of Darwin Award candidates.
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post #37 of 46 Old Feb 16th, 2019, 1:02 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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Is the trail much different?
Can't find that listed in either manual. Did find caster in inches old is 4.279 while newer is 4.61

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post #38 of 46 Old Feb 18th, 2019, 9:14 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

I had the same thing on my '06. It was the steering damper. On deceleration (about 20 to 30 mph) the front end wobbled almost out of control. It went away as soon as I picked up speed. At first I didn't want this to happen at higher speed so I rode home on back roads doing about 40mph. I tried to rebuild the damper but it didn't work for me, maybe too far gone so I bought a real good aftermarket one from Sweden (?). It was about $175 bucks 6 years ago. Getting the old one off was a bear! Worked like a charm!
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post #39 of 46 Old Feb 19th, 2019, 7:13 am
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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I had the same thing on my '06. It was the steering damper. On deceleration (about 20 to 30 mph) the front end wobbled almost out of control. It went away as soon as I picked up speed. At first I didn't want this to happen at higher speed so I rode home on back roads doing about 40mph. I tried to rebuild the damper but it didn't work for me, maybe too far gone so I bought a real good aftermarket one from Sweden (?). It was about $175 bucks 6 years ago. Getting the old one off was a bear! Worked like a charm!
A steering damper never causes nor fixes a wobble. It only helps control its magnitude to keep it from getting to dangerous “tank slapper” levels. The wobble is caused by something else, typically an unevenly worn or dynamically unbalanced tire whose motion is amplified through slop in any number of places: wheel bearings, ball joints, steering stem, swingarm bearings, etc., depending on the suspension style and such.
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post #40 of 46 Old Feb 19th, 2019, 8:10 am
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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A steering damper never causes nor fixes a wobble. It only helps control its magnitude to keep it from getting to dangerous “tank slapper” levels. The wobble is caused by something else, typically an unevenly worn or dynamically unbalanced tire whose motion is amplified through slop in any number of places: wheel bearings, ball joints, steering stem, swingarm bearings, etc., depending on the suspension style and such.
You beat me to that one. Whatever is causing the wobble was not fixed by replacing the damper.

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post #41 of 46 Old Feb 19th, 2019, 8:14 am
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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You beat me to that one. Whatever is causing the wobble was not fixed by replacing the damper.
Try to keep up.

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post #42 of 46 Old Feb 19th, 2019, 8:34 am
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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Try to keep up.
I switched to Decaf so give me a break.
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post #43 of 46 Old Feb 19th, 2019, 6:32 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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I switched to Decaf so give me a break.
You are a better man than me. I could not live without my high test coffee.

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post #44 of 46 Old Feb 25th, 2019, 1:11 am Thread Starter
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

In conclusion was still not happy after the new tire was fitted - it was better but not rock solid.
Thought to myself, if rear tire wear can effect the steering, perhaps adjusting the rear shock could help.
Turned the preload up (i.e. Hardened it) significantly and wammo got my old bike back. No head shake when slowing down and comes to a nice controlled stop. I think I had inadvertently softened it for my pillion instead of tightening it up. Thanks all for your input.
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

Very good.

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post #46 of 46 Old Feb 25th, 2019, 4:39 pm
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Re: LT front end shake as i slow to a stop.

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Turned the preload up (i.e. Hardened it) significantly and wammo got my old bike back.
Preload does not "harden" the shock, but it does set the static "sag" of the suspension. Since there is 130 mm of travel you want to adjust the preload to have a static sag of about 30-35 mm (when you sit on it stopped). That way under load in a corner you will be at 55-65 mm and that is the center of travel so now you have the most available up and down movement of the suspension. It is also what the designers built the bike for and, as you just found out, it works a whole lot better.

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