02' Electra Classic front end knocks over bumps

Discussion in 'Touring Models' started by Foxman, Mar 30, 2012.

  1. Foxman

    Foxman Member

    Hello Guys,
    Just wanted to probe the community to see what might be causing my front end knock problems. I just did the 20,000 mile service and sent my forks in to the local Indi who does good work to re-fill my cartridge shock. Before I took the front end appart, I had a knocking noise in the front end when going over big bumps in the road. the forka weren't bottoming out or anything, but I figured it may have been the steering head bearings. after having the forks drained and re-filled (with OEM HD recommended weight oil) and doing the steering head bearing tightening procedure (Which I must say is a little Hokey) I eliminated all play in the steering head bearings without putting pre-load on them... The knock is still there, and I am out of ideas on what could be the cause of the noisy front end. If I press really hard on the handle bars while holding the front brake at a stand still, I can get the noise to happen. Slight bumps don't generate the knock, only large bumps Living around the Detroit area, that means I hear a lot of knocking on a daily ride...

    Any suggestions would be appreciated in my diagnosys!
  2. Jack Klarich

    Jack Klarich Guest

    Check your gas tank mount bolts just for grins:s
  3. lordharold

    lordharold Active Member

    Ahhhhh! yes the dreaded loose tank! had a couple of those!:D
  4. Breeze3at

    Breeze3at Well-Known Member

    Possibly a broken fairing bracket?
  5. Hoople

    Hoople Account Removed

    I know it is not what you want to do or what your knowledge tells you to do with taper roller bearings, but the neck bearings should be adjusted with some pre-load. With these bikes it's almost dangerous not to have minus endplay.
  6. Foxman

    Foxman Member

    Thanks for the suggestions thus far,
    I had the faring off and couldn't find any cracks in the bracket, although it was bent with the black paint peeling off in one spot... I will check the tank bolts, but would it knock when doing my stationalry test? I did this again in the garage this weekend. Stood up over the seat and held the front brake, then forced the forks down rapidly to inducethe clunk, almost sounds like the forks are bottoming out, but travel doesn't seem to be maxed out... Is there any way to test for sure if this is my forks bottoming out? This knock is really making me scratch my head...
  7. Rubyred

    Rubyred Senior Member

    I know you just changed the fork oil but a heavier weight oil (Screamin Eagle) might help. You may want to consider adding one ounce more than what is recommended by the service manual.
  8. Jack Klarich

    Jack Klarich Guest

    Have you checked the front calipers? You said the noise was there before, did you have the fork bushings replaced?
  9. Foxman

    Foxman Member

    I didn't have the bushings replaced, but I have the 1 cartridge fork on the left side, and the INDI would probably let me know if the bushing(s) needed to be replaced while he was in ther disassembling the cartridge, that is i would think he would. @ 11,000 miles would the bushings be that worn?, and if they did, would they produe a knock when going over large bumps? I had to R&R the calipers of corse to get the wheel and forks off to bring in to the indi for re-fill, so I know I tightened them to spec on replacement. (Plus when I hold the brake to duplicate the knock, I'm binding the caliper on the rotor pretty tight...) so... Possible bad bushings and/or too light of oil, but I can't believe that stock weight oil would bottom out the front forks with my whole 170lbs on the bike...
    Would adding some oil to the forks do any harm?
  10. Jack Klarich

    Jack Klarich Guest

    Nah, it would make the front end feal tighter, less area to compress