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Discussion Starter #1
I have a 1989 RD03 and the front end feels like it's made of jelly.

If I shake the bars when stationary the whole front end wobbles back up through the bars. This also happens when moving at low speeds (below 10mph) and when coming to a stop which throws the whole bike off balance. Once moving at speed is smooths out and disappears.

When moving at low speed it has the feeling of having a heavy passenger on the back who's moving around.

I've checked the head stock bearing, the front wheel bearing and tyre pressure. Everything appears to be tightened and there are no obvious signs that anything else is loose.

Does anyone have an idea of what could be causing it?
 

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it might be coming from the back of a badly balanced front wheel or buckled front wheel . I am no expert just a couple of thoughts on the matter . my transalp 600 is behaving a little funny I suspect it might be headstock bearings as I do a good bit of forestry tracks on it and its got 78000 kms done now and I recon some tool that used to own it was a dab hand with a pressure washer ?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for your reply.

I initially thought it might be a buckled wheel or wheel balancing but it wobbles when stationary and the wheel isn't going around so it can't be either of those. It feels like the forks are made of jelly and it continues to wobble if you shake the bars then hold them firmly.
 

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your welcome Hank I tried to say coming from the back as in swinging arm bushes or wheel bearings but spelled it wrong . hang tight somebody has probably had this before . you could also put front end wobble in the search bar on hear it might be there in an old thread and try youtube too I have often got a better understanding on stuff off there . even put your question in the google search bar it has often led me back to hear good luck with it . I know its annoying but when its sorted you will be a better mechanic :thumbright:
 

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Could it be something like loose tank mountings, or a loose seat? It sounds as though shaking the bars sets something moving which doesn't stop if you hold the bars - therefore it could be something not directly connected to the bars. Are the swinging arm bearings good?
 

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If all at the front is solid then look at the swing arm bearings, shock linkages and rear wheel bearings (3)
 
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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks guys. It sounds like it could possible be coming from the back from what you're all saying so I'll check that out next.
 

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Could it simply be that the rubber bushings in the handlebars clamps are simply shot? Basically, when you shake the handlebars, the front end seems wobbly, even when stationary? Can you perhaps tighten even more the 14mm bolts under the top triple clamp?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I'll give it a try, thanks Lee
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks but I've checked the spokes and they all seem pretty tight. It was one of the first things I checked as I've only had the bike a few months and the first thing I had to sort out was 2 missing spokes on the rear wheel.

Something simple that may be overlooked...numerous loose spokes.
 

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if you could swap front wheels for a day, that would take the tyre, rim, wheel & bearings out of the equation. Anybody neighboring this soul?
 
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If your certain that it's the front end then I would recommend removing the front wheel and check closely the wheel bearings.

I had a similar feeling about a month ago and moved the front wheel checking if it was the wheel bearings but everything seemed tight. A few days later and problem was still there so removed the front wheel to check the wheel bearings closely and they where shot.




Traveling The World Two Up on a 1989 Africa Twin 650.

Updates Here:
www.instagram.com/Africa.Twin.Adventures
www.facebook.com/DHealy91
 

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If your certain that it's the front end then I would recommend removing the front wheel and check closely the wheel bearings.

I had a similar feeling about a month ago and moved the front wheel checking if it was the wheel bearings but everything seemed tight. A few days later and problem was still there so removed the front wheel to check the wheel bearings closely and they where shot




Traveling The World Two Up on a 1989 Africa Twin 650.

Updates Here:
www.instagram.com/Africa.Twin.Adventures
www.facebook.com/DHealy91
 

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Discussion Starter #15
OK thanks I'll also give the wheel bearing a closer look.

If your certain that it's the front end then I would recommend removing the front wheel and check closely the wheel bearings.

I had a similar feeling about a month ago and moved the front wheel checking if it was the wheel bearings but everything seemed tight. A few days later and problem was still there so removed the front wheel to check the wheel bearings closely and they where shot.




Traveling The World Two Up on a 1989 Africa Twin 650.

Updates Here:
www.instagram.com/Africa.Twin.Adventures
www.facebook.com/DHealy91
 

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Hank. Sounds like front bearings completely shot, but another problem can be that the front spindle clamps have worked loose (you wouldn't notice if you have fork shields in place). I've been with an XRV member when it was noticed at speed on an RD04, and that was f*****g scary ! . Have a look.

If you need a second pair of eyes to have a look for the problem ? I'm in Central London (away at the weekend), I'm fairly goodish with AT's
 

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Discussion Starter #17
That would be most helpful thanks. Where in London are you? I could ride over to you one evening if this rain ever stops.


Hank. Sounds like front bearings completely shot, but another problem can be that the front spindle clamps have worked loose (you wouldn't notice if you have fork shields in place). I've been with an XRV member when it was noticed at speed on an RD04, and that was f*****g scary ! . Have a look.

If you need a second pair of eyes to have a look for the problem ? I'm in Central London (away at the weekend), I'm fairly goodish with AT's
 

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W1W, (Just off Oxford Circus). It would have to be tomorrow or then anytime from Monday. TBH Hank if it's that bad I wouldn't recommend riding the bike. I'm driving north to my workshop for a few days I could pass by if your North of me ? (between the West End and St Neots).Send me a PM if you like. My workshop is full of all the right tools, workspace (and AT's) if it comes to it I have AT wheels there that we could try out. :)
 

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Thanks, I've sent you an email.


W1W, (Just off Oxford Circus). It would have to be tomorrow or then anytime from Monday. TBH Hank if it's that bad I wouldn't recommend riding the bike. I'm driving north to my workshop for a few days I could pass by if your North of me ? (between the West End and St Neots).Send me a PM if you like. My workshop is full of all the right tools, workspace (and AT's) if it comes to it I have AT wheels there that we could try out. :) - or ? mail me - motosoho at hotty.
 

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Well, Hank's on his way home. I'm pleased to say it's nothing serious that can't be sorted out. I'm sure he'll keep you updated, but boy he's found himself an ACE RD03 ! I rode it and it's maybe the best one I've ridden (barring his small wobble issues) !! :thumbup:
 
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