Originally Posted by lljanssen
Thanks to all for the responses. I put on the shocks but didn't check the ball joints since they were not mentioned anywhere on the forum. I figured if they were a known issue at reasonable mileage it would have popped up somewhere. There is no doubt the shocks needed replacing. Guess I'm just dumb.
No worries....I never did the ball joint check when I did the shocks. May have been in a hurry to get them on there and hit the road for most of that summer. I was.....!
My bike had a different problem, quite the opposite of yours and scarier. But only once was enough...!
The swivel/balljoint mount at the front of the dampener was seizing up. Found that the hard way when my bike drifted across the line and did not want to come back. Had to force it back and close enough to see the surprised expression on the face of the oncoming driver.
So I check & lube that every year now, been fine for 3-4 years but I think I'll just replace it anyway.It does seem to have stiffened up again a little when I check it, so maybe the small seals are compromised. Hard to see in place.
I'll be checking the lower balljoint next week.Have to just in case I need to add to the parts list and order it. It may be possible to do an acceptable job without offloading/removing the shock altough I'll take it off anyway....getting dirty up there and hard to clean with shock in place. And maybe cleaning them welding pits on the telelever arm and powdercoating that. Bad job on that BMW.......!
But I'll try before and after so I'll know for sure.
With shock in place, kind of hard to remove all the movement of the bike as you shake parts. So that makes play at the balljoint hard to see or feel if it is only a little play. I'll strap the bike down with a ratchet strap over the rear end. Easier for me maybe, my shop has a wooden floor so I can anchor the strap.
You are right, not mentioned much anywhere but ball joint problems seem to be cropping up on the later bikes and even at low milleage. May be from the suspension design on them or different balljoint.If I judge from the cutout of a balljoint on the later bikes, not much in there but a ball and a pretty thin nylon (UHMW ??) socket. Don't know....!
For our bikes well......Sailor are you there???? He has the "why"....!