Friday, April 30, 2010

Wobbling Down The Road

After I finished the alternator, I hooked up a battery/alternator monitor and took a test drive around the block. Almost immediately I noticed the wiggling handlebars. It really increased to about 40MPH: If I let go of the handlebars, they would start shaking badly. But, the situation improved with speed.

When the bike stopped running during my trip, I didn't notice anything like that. Of course, I had been riding for a few hours and the tires were warm and that may have been a factor.

The front tire was scalloped, the likely cause, but I jacked the front end and checked the steering head and wheel bearings, anyway. Everything looked good there, so it was off to Wheel Works in Garden Grove, to price a new tire and see when they could change it. Removing the wheel myself would put the price at about $200.

centerstand raised on boardOn Monday I pulled the wheel. One of the problems doing Goldwing maintenance is the amount of plastic that needs to be removed and reinstalled. The front wheel isn't too bad, but, to slide the wheel out, the front end needs to be jacked high, or the front fender removed. I don't like either option, so I put the bike on the centerstand on a 1X8 board.

front end jackedThat gets the rear wheel high enough that I can put a jack under the engine and raise the front until the rear tire hits the ground. It is much more stable than doing the same thing with the centerstand on the ground and there is more than enough space to pull the wheel out.

I headed down to the shop to get a tire on order, but found they had one in stock. An hour or so (just enough time to find a bank with an ATM) and I was on my way home. It took about a half-hour to get the tire on and the plastic buttoned up. Of course, I waited till Tuesday - I had already done enough for one day.


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