Bike sway.

Discussion in 'Touring Models' started by Dublin Dave, Nov 17, 2008.

  1. Dublin Dave

    Dublin Dave Member

    On the way home from work the other day , early morning, the time to check out the handling of a bike in Ireland, as the cops are changing shift.
    So im heading home at about 120kms and was leaning my RK2007 into nice sweeping bends, and noticed a bit of swaying as if the connection between bike and handlebars were made of elastic, as if it was going to start a bit of tank slap.
    Checked tyre(tire) pressures and all is fine, 36 front and 36 rear and nothing too heavy on board except me!!
    What could this be, anyone have any ideas?? Its bloody scarey, ill think twice before racing my Harley next year,
  2. Dublin Dave

    Dublin Dave Member

    Cheers Hobbit,
    So if Herley Davidson are fixing the problem on the 2009 bikes, is a problem they have noted ,and are going to fix the problem on 2007 and 2008 touring bikes sold under warranty. Would that not make sense, as this problem would fall under the ' safety' banner in many countries.
    Or have they even brought out an aftermarket fixer for this, so one can ride safely and not get killed.
    I like to know their (HD)view on this, are they going to recall??
  3. papaseven

    papaseven Member

    I wouldn't hesitate to take it in and describe the problem but our experience around here is that they're gonna tell you that you were riding too fast for the turn.
    Big heavy bikes do have a tendency to do this and sometimes it's just what Hobbit said "Touring Weave" or sway.
    It's not usually dangerous but it'll pucker you up for a minute.

    I don't subscribe to the idea that any bike should do this but I've had several that did, Harley and others.

    The device Hobbit described will fix most if not all of it but you need to get the basics checked first. Most of the ones I've ridden that did this had some age on them so yours could be a rear swingarm bushing or loose bolt or even a steering head bearing out of adjustment.

    Hopefully if you holler long and loud enough they'll do something about it.

    I did just this and even wrote a letter that said if it resulted in an accident I would sue everybody from the CEO of Harley to the guy that wiped it down before I took delivery.
    I sent it certified mail to the dealer and the MOCO so they had to sign for it.

    My complaining resulted in a new swingarm, bushings, head bearings, and a new rear tire.
    It solved my problem so something was amiss. It cost me 50 bucks for the 4/32's of tire wear.

    Our riding parteners have a 06 Ultra and his is so bad that his wife won't ride it. He's going through the same process I did and we'll see where it ends up.

    Good Luck
  4. Dublin Dave

    Dublin Dave Member

    Thanks Geno,
    Maybe this is something i will have to get used to, after riding fast Jap. bikes for so long, things like that at average speed need addressing.
    I will try to find out more on the stabiliser HOBBIT mentioned above, and purchase one ( from US looks like) for a safety point of view.
    But where will the tension end up on the frame when this is installed.:(
  5. glider

    glider Veteran Member

  6. Dublin Dave

    Dublin Dave Member

    Thanks for link glider, i will contact them to see if they ship to Europe!! The picture of the bloke coming off his bike on their web-site says it all.
    When i felt it i laid off the throttle a little until the bike corrected itself, so it must get worse when followed through.Must put on the road rash suit and find out.... because im curious.... and then ill' sue HD..because its not mentioned in their user manual!!
  7. TQuentin1

    TQuentin1 Well-Known Member Staff Member Moderator


    All of us with the rubber mounted engine bikes face this problem at different levels. Some guys report NO problem what-so-ever, and even question if it is a real problem. Other guys who have felt the problem themselves all know it is a real deal. The heavier the bike and the more we pile on it, the more apparent the problem is.

    I did not like the feel on my '03 UC. So I went with the system that Glider sent you the link for. I actually did the "Trackula" upgrade with new swing arm bushings, pivot shaft, isolators, front motor mount, and True Track. The bike is on a rail now! Feels great, and I am not worried about leaning into it a bit! As long as the road is dry and the rubber good, it feels great!

    There are a number of different alternatives out there beside the True Track. I just liked their combo.

  8. bonedaddio

    bonedaddio Member

    I just want to confirm: I rode in on an 07 Street Glide and rode home on an 09 Street Glide, and they really DON'T do the cornering shimmy. The 07 (and every other one I've had) did, and the 09 doesn't.
    Yeah, why'd this take so long to address??

  9. Ozoneman

    Ozoneman Active Member

  10. doc_63

    doc_63 Active Member

    I have this phenomenom on my 08 Street Glide. I had heard of it before I got it so I didnt freek out when it happened. I never feel like it puts me in danger and it doesnt seem to get any worse on harder corners or when I go faster. Its like its there but doesnt really bother me...should it?