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Visionary
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5,055 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Has anyone ever had a new tire that is defective and gives the feeling of a slight wobble?
I put a set of Dunlop Elte 4s on my 08 Vision the other day, the bike was riding fine before, the tires were just bald. I've worn out 3 sets of these same tires on the bike, and was looking foward to the new tire feel. I mounted the new ones, checked the bearings, balanced them well( less than an ounce on each) , and put the wheels back on. I took the bike down and rode away, anticpating a nice smooth feel....and 2 blocks away I picked up on a wobble or vibration from side to side in the handle bars (nothing in the rest of the bike, it has to be the front wheel) at slow or moderate speeds, it goes away at higher speeds. That's weird...

I played with pressures, I jacked it and spun the front wheel, (no wobble is visible) and examined the bead lines to make sure the tire was seated, I even deflated and reinflated it but no changes. I was considering taking the wheel off, breaking the beads and rebeading them but that's work, I haven't done that yet, and going by the lines on the tires it's perfect anyway.

The tire mounted easily, no problems getting it on the rim and it beaded fine with 2 nice pops at about 45-50 psi, which is typical for the E4s, that are solid and take a lot of pressure to seat them. Tires are really fresh, less than 3 months old by date code, they still stink of fresh rubber in fact, possibly the freshest tires I think I have ever gotten. I always like biuying from JP cycles, they never seem to have old tires on the shelf.

Now I'm wondering if I missed something, or do I have a tire with an internal flaw and how to tell...
 

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Secret Agent
2006 Honda CBR1000RR, 2008 Honda CRF230L, 2019 Honda CRF1000L
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4,372 Posts
I've had bad automotive tires brand new, but not motorcycle tires (yet).

Sounds like you've covered about all there is to cover. Maybe a high speed balance machine would show something?
 

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I had this happen once when I replaced the front tire on my BMW (different tire brand) Turns out I likely have some damage to the rim that might well be the result of the tire change. When I contacted the tire manufacturer by phone the rep naturally insisted it could not possibly be a problem with their product.
:LOL: They actually said they run those tires on that model motorcycle all the time and have no tire problems. I thought that was pretty funny.
 

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American Legion Rider & sub-Administrator
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You checked the sides for anything odd but did you check the outside, where the rubber hits the road?
 

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Visionary
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
You checked the sides for anything odd but did you check the outside, where the rubber hits the road?
yeah, I had it up on a jack and looked it over, no lumps or bumps that i saw. It was late though, I want to examine it closer tonight when I get home from work as long as I get home at a civilized hour...this is my first day back after a week home on vacation so who knows what the day will bring...
 

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Visionary
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5,055 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I had this happen once when I replaced the front tire on my BMW (different tire brand) Turns out I likely have some damage to the rim that might well be the result of the tire change. When I contacted the tire manufacturer by phone the rep naturally insisted it could not possibly be a problem with their product.
:LOL: They actually said they run those tires on that model motorcycle all the time and have no tire problems. I thought that was pretty funny.
That's what I'm expecting if i try to warrantee it..it couldnt possibly be OUR tire that's bad...
 

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2005 CBR1000RR; 2018 CBR1000RR SP; 2021 Ninja 1000SX
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See if you can find the code on the wall to determine the age of the tire. I'm curious if that is also in play.
 

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Premium Member
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I had a Dunlop 404 ? that would not balance properly. Got a continuous bounce in the front at about 65.
The rim is also a bit out of balance. But the replacement bias tyre runs fine. Just a bit more weight than usual. UK
 

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2020 Tracer 900GT
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191 Posts
Yup I have had bad luck with motorcycle tires over the years from different OEM, causing wobble/hop even though they were perfectly balanced. Currently my garbage OEM Dunflop D222 on my Tracer GT are giving me a wobble/hop since new, and it's a very well known issue on the forum......time for Michelin Pilot 4's!
 

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Visionary
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
See if you can find the code on the wall to determine the age of the tire. I'm curious if that is also in play.
They are really new, by the codes one of the pair was like 6 weeks old, the other was about 3 months old. Freshest tires I've ever installed
 

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Ace Tuner
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3,109 Posts
Has anyone ever had a new tire that is defective and gives the feeling of a slight wobble?
Yes.
I was sure it was not the new front tire so I checked / replaced anything that could be the cause.
I finally fixed it by replacing the tire. Oh well, I wanted tapered steering neck bearings anyway...

S F
 

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Retired twice: Navy and as a govt contractor
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Use something where you can do a runout test, side to side and then front to back or top to bottom.
 
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What happens if you lift the front wheel off the ground and then spin it real fast using something like an electric drill held up against the tire.
 

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American Legion Rider & sub-Administrator
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Use something where you can do a runout test, side to side and then front to back or top to bottom.
I thought he said he did but to be certain, we are talking about the following...

The runout might be so small you can't see it unless you have a dial indicator. But Trials suggestion might show runout better than spinning it by hand.
 

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Visionary
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I thought he said he did but to be certain, we are talking about the following...

The runout might be so small you can't see it unless you have a dial indicator. But Trials suggestion might show runout better than spinning it by hand.
I did a visual and it looked fine, I suppose I could do it again and set up my dial indicator to really test it. I'm not sure how much runout is normal on a tire, but I'm sure i can look it up.
It's not terrible, i rode it to work today and it's usuable but it's not as smooth as it could be and should be, something is just not right.

I ordered a new tire, I might just put it on, then if it fixes the problem I'll try to get the other one waranteed, if not, I will need a tire this year for my other Vision too so it's not a big deal to have a spare sitting around for a couple of months.
 

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Visionary
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Yes.
I was sure it was not the new front tire so I checked / replaced anything that could be the cause.
I finally fixed it by replacing the tire. Oh well, I wanted tapered steering neck bearings anyway...

S F
I have a feeling I'm headed down that same path, was checking the brakes for dragging last night, rotors for wiggles ( they are pretty worn, down almost to the thickness limit, but still straight), and I was thinking about checking the tightness of the neck bearings ( quite a chore on a Vision) , they are new, I put them in 20k miles ago so I doubt they are bad but they could have worn in and gotten loose.
 

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Visionary
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Could those new bearings just wore in a little bit and need tightening?

Just a thought.
I'm thinking that's possible, I'll check but it's a real pain to get to the nut to tighten them, a lot of parts have to be taken off..but I guess I could just jack it up and wiggle the forks to see how it feels.
 

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Axle bearings will become a problem before a taper bearing will ever need attention assuming it was greased and tensioned right on installation, they should not change. Taper bearings are many times stronger then anything with spherical balls in it because of the long cylindrical line of contact between the roller and race, Ball bearings have points of contact not lines of contact.
Axle bearings are usually common enough and cheap enough to just replace periodically but many overlook them completely. ... like changing the fork oil. If you can't remember when it was done last it's likely service overdue.
 

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There is a test for your steering head bearing play:
Sit on the bike no kickstand. Press your thumb into the seam between the steering head and top yoke.

Engage the front brake and push the bike forwards and rearwards hard against the brake, if you detect any movement at your thumb there is a problem. You will feel the yoke part moving forwards and backwards relative to the frame.

If the bearing is too tight it will imply resistance to turning the handlebars.
 
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