Front end shimmy - K-Bikes.com - Excellence in Motion
 
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2011, 2:36 pm Thread Starter
DrD
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Front end shimmy

Last November I had my '08 K1200GT in for service and new tires, Z6 front and rear. In the first part of this year I wasn't riding much, but that changed recently. Since then, while riding on highways I have noticed a shimmy in the front. It is not constant, it only occurs above about 50 mph, and it feels like a gust caught the front. I don't recall feeling this previously. In fact, I recall some highway rides during which I was amazed how planted the bike felt.

Could it be the Z6 tires are causing this? I checked the pressure the other day and both were a few pounds low, so I filled the tires to the specs (36/42 psi). Today I was out for a 150 mile ride and the shimmy was there, though it might have been a bit less.

Advice? The bike is great otherwise. [Well, except the horn, which I am replacing, and the pegs could be lower,....]

When in doubt, apply more throttle.
2008 K1200GT, Dark Graphite, "#4, the Dancing Hippo"
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2011, 3:11 pm
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Front end shimmy... on any / all roads above 50MPH? Or possibly roads (freeways) that have the rain grooves cut in them? I've got Z6's on mt GT, 7400miles worth, and no shimmy ever on any road surface. Also run the factory recommended pressures. Although the rear will be ready for replacement probably with another 200 - 300 miles. Front, probably 1000 miles left.

Worst road for rain grooves and rough surface from tire chains - gotta be: Donner Pass - US80.

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Last edited by K13GT; Jul 5th, 2011 at 3:18 pm.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2011, 5:19 pm Thread Starter
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These were roads in good condition. I know the effect that you write about -- not the same.

What I really hate are tar snakes.

When in doubt, apply more throttle.
2008 K1200GT, Dark Graphite, "#4, the Dancing Hippo"
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 2011, 7:38 pm Thread Starter
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Problem solved: It is the large top case. I had it on the bike more this year due to commuting on the bike. I took it off yesterday, then went for a ride then and this morning. The result was normal behavior. I guess some vortices come off other vehicles, vegetation, etc., and 'grab' the top case. It feels like the front end wandering.

When in doubt, apply more throttle.
2008 K1200GT, Dark Graphite, "#4, the Dancing Hippo"
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old Jul 9th, 2011, 9:46 pm
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Pleased you've fixed it but just to be sure, check the front wheel bearing.

Put the bike on the centre stand and hold the wheel on opposite sides. Try and rock the wheel by pushing firmly with one hand and pulling with the other and see if there's any play.

I had the same wandering symptom and the bearings turned out to be scrap.

Good luck.
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