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Old 7th October 2010, 21:14   #1
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Default Wobbling Handle Bar

Hi guys,i own a pulsar 180 UG3 model.Its done 20K kms till now.From the past 2 months i am experiencing this handle bar wobbling problem.Here is how it is happening

I am at 50 kmph and increase the throttle.The handle bar starts wobbling with increasing intensity as the speed increases and stops once the speed reaches 80+ kmph.

At any speed above 40 kmph,if i loosen my grip on the handle bar,it starts wobbling horribly.

I have the stock tyres,ie,100/90-17 zapper C at rear and 2.75-17 at front.There has not been a single puncture till now.The air pressure i keep is 26 front and 30 rear.

The service center guys say its not a problem and all pulsars have this,where as this problem started only 2 months ago for me.

Please guide me to where the problem is and how to rectify it.Thanks
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Old 7th October 2010, 21:48   #2
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Do you get a click when u brake hard with the disc? If so, solution is simple.
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Old 7th October 2010, 22:08   #3
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Originally Posted by DRIV3R View Post
Do you get a click when u brake hard with the disc? If so, solution is simple.

Yes,i do get a click sound if i suddenly pump the brakes.its come somewhere around the fork region
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Old 7th October 2010, 22:13   #4
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Originally Posted by sagarpadaki View Post
Yes,i do get a click sound if i suddenly pump the brakes.its come somewhere around the fork region
The problem is with the T joint below the handlebar. Get it tightened or replaced if necessary. This is a common trait of the pulsars.
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Old 7th October 2010, 22:18   #5
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Originally Posted by DRIV3R View Post
The problem is with the T joint below the handlebar. Get it tightened or replaced if necessary. This is a common trait of the pulsars.

Thanks for the quick solution buddy,will get it checked out soon at the bajaj service
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Old 8th October 2010, 05:25   #6
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@Sagara - quite a few reasons...
- The cone set would've been erroded in the T-Stem; you may want to check & replace them
- Most common is wheel truving. On the main stand allow the front wheel for free rotation & if you see the wheel not in a straight line, then take it to a truving centre & get the rims straightened
- Last but not the least, check if the handle bars are tightened on the upper T-Stem
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Old 8th October 2010, 10:44   #7
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To what aargee has stated, here's some additions -

a. If the steering cone (set) bearings are broken / cracked / worn out, the problem faced by you will surface. To check this, the simple way is to put the bike on its center stand, grip the forks and check for lateral movement. If the cone set is weak, there will be play.

To adjust, don't simply use the simple (and ill advised) method of loosening the steering stem nut and tightening the cone sets nut. Check the steering play by removing the wheel and the forks and then go ahead with tightening or replacing, as needed.

b. As regards 'truing' (rim run out is the actual terminology, I think) - it is mostly the problem in case of steel wheels with spokes. In case of alloys, check for bends - especially if you have crashed into a pothole. Sometimes, the alloys have to be 'balanced' - just like a car wheel.

Spoke wheel run out can be checked visually; alloy wheels would need to be dismounted and put on the balancing machine.

Now a point - which I am sure will flak () -

Zapper tyres are prone to cause this problem. While it enhances the looks and mileage (and to certain extent the cornering abilities also), as the tyre reaches the ends of its life (at about 25000 kms), this problems crops up. So before you try anything, do this -

a. remove the tyre and tube from the front wheel.

b. check whether the tube is truly circular by fully inflating it.

c. even if the shape is slightly distorted, it will cause the steering wobble. So better replace the tube.

d. check the inside of the tyre. normally, the tube and tyre 'bind' together and run - however, it some portion of the tube and tyre either stick or slip, the resultant friction also causes this problem. Any portion indicating such abrasion / friction means you have this problem. (If any of you have observed - good tyre shops will use a white coloured powder to coat the inside of the wheel whenever they remove the tube - this powder does not allow the tube and tyre to 'stick')

e. thoroughly check the tyre - especially the central groove. Any cracks within this groove not only causes wobbling, but makes the bike more prone to tramlining.

I have spent a sizeable amount to rectify the same problem in my Gladiator. Replaced the cone set thrice (Rs. 300+ each time) - no use; replaced the front tyre (Rs. 1,400; & unfortunately, went for the same uni-directional rotation tyre) - no use. Finally, discarded the barely used front tyre and replaced it with a new tyre (good old ribbed type @ Rs. 1450) and a new tube (Rs. 200). Voila! problem solved!!
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Old 8th October 2010, 12:05   #8
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I had the Cone set checked in the last service a month ago.as per the SA its fine and there is no need for replacement.

And regarding wheel balancing,i didnt know that the alloys could be balanced.do the car wheel balancing guys balance the bike wheels too?
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Old 8th October 2010, 12:49   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vrprabhu
To check this, the simple way is to put the bike on its center stand, grip the forks and check for lateral movement. If the cone set is weak, there will be play
@Sagar - ^^^ is what you need to do immediately; its a vital point that I missed telling you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vrprabhu
check whether the tube is truly circular by fully inflating it
even if the shape is slightly distorted, it will cause the steering wobble. So better replace the tube
I don't know about the tires, but the above point is very much valid. The tube can cause the problems within. @Sagar, check for the above point too. Do not take the tire issues lightly unless you're using simple & plainly designed tires.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sagarpadaki
I had the Cone set checked in the last service a month ago.as per the SA its fine and there is no need for replacement
Well the cone set consists of 4 rings & 2 dozen of balls; this is nothing but a bearing. Even if one of the ball becomes worn out, not even broken, you'll experience slightest issues. These things keep working fine in the morning but will go kaput in the evening. So you may want to reconsider the SA's statement.
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Old 8th October 2010, 17:51   #10
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I checked for the lateral movement by putting the bike on main stand.made my friend push down the rear and grabbed the forks and pushed and pulled it.The is no movement at all.Its stiff.tried it many times applying a higher force.Still there are no movements.I dont know what to conclude from it.

And yes there is a slight lateral movement of the front wheel when it is made to spin.A little this side that side movement.How to rectify it?And both my tyres are puncture free till now.

Is it better to change both the steering cone set and the T-joint together?
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Old 8th October 2010, 18:06   #11
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Sagar, I have been facing this problem too. I have complained n number of times with the chennai bajaj dealr and they say everything is fine. I have asked them to check the cone and they did and mention that the cone is fine. The funny part is that I had a bajaj Calliber and it had the same issue.

I have done wheel truving as mentioned by aargee and still the issue persists. Checked with a local tyre store to check the tube and tyre and he confirmed that everything is in order, but the issue still persists.

Please share the rootcause if you found one. My pulsar is 2004 Model and its having steel rims at the front.
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Old 9th October 2010, 10:54   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sagarpadaki View Post
And yes there is a slight lateral movement of the front wheel when it is made to spin.A little this side that side movement
1. Steering Cone (steering race & bearing set) - If there is no play in the forks, then it is doubtful whether there is any problem with the race / bearings. One more indicator of faulty steering is - handle bar moves too freely to either side (loose / worn balls) or the movement is hard / pulls to either side. Ideally, the movement of the the handle bar should be 'smooth' and it should turn either side on application of a small force. In my experience, problems in race will lead to problems in the fork and there will be traces of oil leak from the forks.

2. Wheel alignment - I have seen Bajaj service station advising balancing - have even seen some wheels fitted with lead weights. But, to be best of my knowledge, bent alloy wheels cannot be brought back to original shape. However, you haven't reported what is the type of tyres you are using. Zapper / uni-directional tyres and / or a faulty tube can be the root cause of your problem.

3. T joint - I guess you are referring to the 'steering head'. Don't see how it can be damaged, unless you had met with an accident or had a hard fall. (FYI, replacing the steering race is a skilled job, requiring the old bearing / race to be pulled out and new one fitted using a special tool. Many people / workshop simply hammer it, which can't ensure perfect fitting. And, there is a tool to ensure the alignment of the steering head too )
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Old 9th October 2010, 18:48   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vrprabhu View Post
1. Steering Cone (steering race & bearing set) - If there is no play in the forks, then it is doubtful whether there is any problem with the race / bearings. One more indicator of faulty steering is - handle bar moves too freely to either side (loose / worn balls) or the movement is hard / pulls to either side. Ideally, the movement of the the handle bar should be 'smooth' and it should turn either side on application of a small force. In my experience, problems in race will lead to problems in the fork and there will be traces of oil leak from the forks.

2. Wheel alignment - I have seen Bajaj service station advising balancing - have even seen some wheels fitted with lead weights. But, to be best of my knowledge, bent alloy wheels cannot be brought back to original shape. However, you haven't reported what is the type of tyres you are using. Zapper / uni-directional tyres and / or a faulty tube can be the root cause of your problem.

3. T joint - I guess you are referring to the 'steering head'. Don't see how it can be damaged, unless you had met with an accident or had a hard fall. (FYI, replacing the steering race is a skilled job, requiring the old bearing / race to be pulled out and new one fitted using a special tool. Many people / workshop simply hammer it, which can't ensure perfect fitting. And, there is a tool to ensure the alignment of the steering head too )

1.The handle bar is neither too loose nor too tight.

2.Now i have to get the wheel alignment done for the alloys.Where to get it done is the big question?I have mentioned i use the stock Zapper C 100/90-17 at rear and 2.75-17 at front tube type.Maybe is time to change the tyres then

3.No accident,no fall.Have to get it checked properly
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Old 10th October 2010, 11:40   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ElantraGT View Post
I have done wheel truving as mentioned by aargee and still the issue persists. Checked with a local tyre store to check the tube and tyre and he confirmed that everything is in order, but the issue still persists.
Hmmm...quite interesting; I'd like to see this issue, if you're willing to.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sagarpadaki View Post
2.Now i have to get the wheel alignment done for the alloys.Where to get it done is the big question?
Same wheel truving shop, but remember...
1. He should be a member of motor wheel balancing association (there's one in Chennai)
2. Most importantly, he should be a person who knows how to work with alloy wheels; he shouldn't experiment. So start enquiring this with local mechanic or garages & they should guide you to the right person. State as if you're asking for a different vehicle otherwise, the mechanics will ask you to bring the vehicle to them for inspection.
3. Last but not the least, show this issue to 4-5 independent mechanics & take their opinion as what needs to be fixed & finally take a call.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sagarpadaki View Post
I have mentioned i use the stock Zapper C 100/90-17 at rear and 2.75-17 at front tube type.Maybe is time to change the tyres then
Can't really say

Last edited by aargee : 10th October 2010 at 11:42.
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Old 11th October 2010, 13:14   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sagarpadaki View Post
I have mentioned i use the stock Zapper C 100/90-17 at rear and 2.75-17 at front tube type.
Sorry, I should have been more specific. Because, I have experienced the wobbling tyres with respect to Dunlop, MRF & TVS tyres. Surprsingly, when I had the similar problem in CT100, the problem was diagnosed as faulty tyre (there were some visible cracks on it). It was MTL Duro brand (bajaj's own brand), and they promptly replaced it with a new one (after I had used for almost a year)!! If you can - try to put some other type used tyre (plenty of 2nd hand ones will be able), just to see that the same problem doesn't exist, before switching over to new ones.

Aargee has already given inputs on the balancing. While doing this, ensure that the wheel bearings are also OK.
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