'03 KRS with tough steering, damper?? - K-Bikes.com - Excellence in Motion
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old Dec 2nd, 2009, 11:06 pm Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Charlottesville, Virginia, USA
Posts: 1
'03 KRS with tough steering, damper??

Iv'e got two KRS's that I just bought this year. The bike I'm having issue with is a '03 blue /white with 38,000 miles on it. The steering seems really difficult, like I have to push it hard into the turns. When I bought it I didn't know any difference then I happened to end up (through a trade to help a friend) with another. It's a 2000. The '00 has awesome steering. They seem worlds apart. I'm wondering if the damper is toast on the '03. I know it is not adjustable (or so I think). The tire pressure is good too. I don't know what to do, but it does not feel as fun (or safe) to ride as the 2000 which performs beautifully.

Would the damper fail after only 38,000 miles?


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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old Dec 3rd, 2009, 7:47 am
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The 'damper' is only there to stop a steering wobble, it's not like other shorter wheelbase bikes that need a proper damper to keep their steering stable.

Put the bike on the center stand and have somebody sitting or pushing down on the passenger seat - that lifts the front wheel a couple of inches.

Now rock the steering. First for small movements it should feel very free. Then make larger movements. Now you should feel some damping but it shouldn't feel at all stiff.

There may be other things going on, but if the steering damper has failed some miles back, got filled up with water and corroded you have a real steering safety issue and should remove it until you can get it replaced. Some say riding without it is OK - but that's your decision.

The damper can fail after 15K. If you try to fix it yourself it can fail and spew oil over the fender just by hard rocking the steering before you even test ride the bike!

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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old Dec 3rd, 2009, 9:43 am
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Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Burton, British Columbia, Canada
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A Blue & White 03......just like mine....!

Possibly same problem I had, the front mount is stiff from corrosion or lack of lube.....let me see if I can go copy and paste my thread from somewhere else.....then I'll send you a PM with the whole thing:

{....what I found was that the front mount for the steering damper was very stiff from dirt and lack of lubrication.There is a bronze bushing in there that has to move freely as is turns with the steering. Any stifness or drag could be felt in the steering. The lower mounting bolt is no fun at all to remove, another bloody torx head........and you have to remove the fenders to get at it, plus there is a wimpy little plastic cap to keep the dirt out. I know from other posts that some riders had problems removing that bolt, luckily for me it came out fine.I cleaned everything and lubed it all, now everything is nice and smooth.....!}
And a warning to anyone with an older bike before you end up in the "other" lane like me,with a car coming the other way,and a bike not wanting to come back......!

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