wobble when taking off and turning at the same time


Information and questions on GL1100 Goldwings (1980-1983)
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83 goldwing
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wobble when taking off and turning at the same time

Postby 83 goldwing » Sun Mar 10, 2013 9:16 pm



Hi I am new to this form I have a 1983 goldwing and ever since that I have owned it it has had a wobble in it when I take off it seem to be worst on a hill or when I am starting off and turning left or right after I get going it seems to be alright, I rebuilt the front forks but did not change out the springs (they measured out alright but I am wondering if I should have changed them out anyway) and it still did it, I did not ride it at all last year because it is bothering that much, I talked to a dealer and he said that that was normal they called it a flex frame and that is normal, then I was talking to some one about it and they said that there was a brace that you could put on to the front fork and that would take the wobble out, then I was reading about the same bracket on this forum and I was wondering if anybody might have a picture of it, or is this a normal issue with this bike and has anybody else had this problem.
I really like the bike except for this issue and it has detured form riding because it unsettling, I would not like it to happen at 65 or 70 mph. any information would be very helpful
Thank you 83 goldwing



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trashtruck
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Re: wobble when taking off and turning at the same time

Postby trashtruck » Sun Mar 10, 2013 10:20 pm

check your front calipers and see if they aren't binding when released. there are some companies that make different style fork braces but in my opinion thats like putting a bandaid on it. it doesn't solve the problem. some experience front end wobble due to incorrect tire pressure, sticking brakes, incorrect fluid level, incorrect wheel install, incorrect air pressure in the forks, bad fork seals etc....
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RoadRogue
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Re: wobble when taking off and turning at the same time

Postby RoadRogue » Sun Mar 10, 2013 11:23 pm

Your "dealer" is an idiot. there is a wobble that can happen on the 1100. it usually happens when you are decelerating around 20mph if you have your hands off the bars. Usual cause is worn front tire, low air pressure in front tire, loose steering head bearings loose swing arm bearings or a combination of any/all of these. The how to section is a big help on alot of these issues, check it out 8-)
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Re: wobble when taking off and turning at the same time

Postby SteveB123 » Mon Mar 11, 2013 8:49 am

trashtruck wrote: there are some companies that make different style fork braces but in my opinion thats like putting a bandaid on it..


Fork braces are to prevent fork flex and differential movement.
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Re: wobble when taking off and turning at the same time

Postby themainviking » Mon Mar 11, 2013 1:19 pm

RoadRogue wrote:Your "dealer" is an idiot. Causes can be loose steering head bearings, loose swing arm bearings or a combination of any/all of these. The how to section is a big help on alot of these issues, check it out 8-)


I second the steering head bearings and especially the swing arm bearings. I took a Honda 750 four in on a trade for a car one time, cleaned it up and took it in for certification inspection for licensing. It passed with flying colors. Then I took it for a test ride to see how much I should sell it for. Then I took the bike home and changed out the swing arm bearings, and it rode much better, without the annoying wobble at low speed. People do not realize how something in the back of a bike can cause what feels like a shimmy in the front, but that swing arm will do it for sure. Not too hard to check either. Put the bike up on the center stand and see how much play you can find in the rear. If you got any, change them bearings. Check the steering head the same way. Put on center stand, put a jack under the engine to get the front wheel up, and pull on the front wheel. If you have any appreciable movement, change out the steering head bearings, or you can try to adjust them a bit tighter. Do not torque the steering head bearings down real hard though. This will destroy them.
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Re: wobble when taking off and turning at the same time

Postby Johnyy Smoke » Mon Mar 11, 2013 4:33 pm

Randacks cycle shack sells a fork brace for your ride.As posted before- the steerring head bearings- may be worn also.You can get a set for around $30 or so? Actually the bearings are cheaper than the brace-and more than likely will fix the problem.Regards, Johnyy

83 goldwing
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Re: wobble when taking off and turning at the same time

Postby 83 goldwing » Mon Mar 11, 2013 7:15 pm

Thank you all for the reply's I will keep working on it until I find the problem I had a feeling that the Flex Frame was not really the best awnser thank you for confirming that for me
Thank you
83 goldwing

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Re: wobble when taking off and turning at the same time

Postby WingAdmin » Mon Mar 11, 2013 7:26 pm

I had this on my GL1500 when I got it, it was caused by bad front wheel bearings.

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Re: wobble when taking off and turning at the same time

Postby littlebeaver » Mon Mar 11, 2013 9:40 pm

What type of tire's are on the cycle? Are they old or new ? Are they balanced proper...I'd get a good quality set of tires installed and balanced [dyna beads] then give it a try.. I bought some Maxxis tires for my Nomad once and it devoloped the shake as described..Once I went back to Bridgestone's [stock tire] all the shakes stopped..It could be any of the above suggestions as well... I had dunlop 404's on my 81 1100 and I just changed to Bridgestone Spitfires with Dyna beads and the slight shake I had before at decelleration is now gone.. :shock: Wow, smooth as silk now..

83 goldwing
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Re: wobble when taking off and turning at the same time

Postby 83 goldwing » Mon Mar 11, 2013 10:48 pm

Thank you again for the info the wobble that I am talking about is on take off I have not notice it on decelation (yet) it is more noticeable on a hill when you take off or when you are taking off and making a sharp left or right hand turn, if I give it more rpm's it dose not do it but if you are in the city it can make it kinda interesting when you have a lot of traffic in front of you. I think I should have put new spring in the forks when I had them apart but was to cheap they might be weak they measure out all right but was down to the min. I would also like to check the swing arms but am not sure how to do it, I went to the how to (which I found very very good) but I did not see any articals on the swing arms I think that you put the bike onto the center stand then pull on the tire front to back or is side to side?

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trashtruck
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Re: wobble when taking off and turning at the same time

Postby trashtruck » Mon Mar 11, 2013 10:54 pm

put bike on centerstand, check swingarm movement side to side. as you can see, there is a long list of things that can cause wobble.
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Johnyy Smoke
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Re: wobble when taking off and turning at the same time

Postby Johnyy Smoke » Tue Mar 12, 2013 6:28 am

If you decide on replacing the front springs-I would suggest Progressive springs over oem. I have a set and highly recommend them. Around $90 I think. Regards, Johnyy

83 goldwing
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Re: wobble when taking off and turning at the same time

Postby 83 goldwing » Tue Mar 12, 2013 6:20 pm

I have one more Question there is an adjument down donw on hte bottom of the fork I think that it is on the left side it has three positions on it if this was not working right could this be the proablem it dose not seem that there is very much resistence in the forks if I have the bike on the side stand and streighten it up the frontend drops right down is this normal?

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Re: wobble when taking off and turning at the same time

Postby WingAdmin » Tue Mar 12, 2013 9:23 pm

83 goldwing wrote:I have one more Question there is an adjument down donw on hte bottom of the fork I think that it is on the left side it has three positions on it if this was not working right could this be the proablem it dose not seem that there is very much resistence in the forks if I have the bike on the side stand and streighten it up the frontend drops right down is this normal?


That is the TRAC Anti-Dive. It determines how much resistance there is to compression over time when braking. It keeps the front end from "diving" under heavy braking. It shouldn't have any effect on the issue you're experiencing.

TRAC Anti-Dive
TRAC Anti-Dive


I would put the bike on the center stand, have someone sit on the back seat to lift the front wheel in the air, and spend a bit of time trying to wiggle the front wheel and forks to check for bearing play.

See the following for steering bearings:





Here's my 1500 with a failed front wheel bearing:





And the free play in that bearing that caused the wobble problem when taking off/turning:




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Re: wobble when taking off and turning at the same time

Postby littlebeaver » Tue Mar 12, 2013 9:58 pm

I love your videos Admin. you make them so easy to understand, the still photo's are great but there's nothing like seeing it done and your narration voice is awesome...Good Good Good.. :D

83 goldwing
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Re: wobble when taking off and turning at the same time

Postby 83 goldwing » Tue Mar 12, 2013 10:37 pm

Thank you Thank you Thank you !!!!!! :D wingadmin I think I know where my issue is my triple tree bearings are doing the same thing that you showed in the video I don't think that I have a wheel bearing issue but I am going to change them out anyway I am also going to put new springs into the forks thanks again for the help, when the weather breaks I will send some pictures I will proably start pulling the forks off this weekend I have been trying to figure this out sence I got the bike I think that has been five + years and two sets of tires, I have several people look at it including two dealers, I also have had people take it out for test ride (that have had wings for years) and they all said that this is weard but have had no idea of what it could be or where to look so once again THANK YOU I feel that there is hope for it after all and that I can start enjoy riding my bike, and not worring about a wobble
Have a good week
83 goldwing

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Re: wobble when taking off and turning at the same time

Postby WingAdmin » Wed Mar 13, 2013 10:32 pm

littlebeaver wrote:I love your videos Admin. you make them so easy to understand, the still photo's are great but there's nothing like seeing it done and your narration voice is awesome...Good Good Good.. :D


Thanks. Many years ago in another life, I worked in radio....

I changed out those steering head bearings in the Pacific Coast (the one in the video shown with the bad bearings) on Sunday. It's almost identical to the GL1500, it even uses the same exact replacement bearings and seals.

83 goldwing
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Re: wobble when taking off and turning at the same time

Postby 83 goldwing » Sun Jul 07, 2013 10:16 pm

Hi everyone I want to thank all of you for all your suggestions on the wobble that I had in my 83 gl 1100 I finally got it all back together and guess what no more wobble I am pretty sure that it was all in the fork springs the wheel bearings and the triple tree bearing all checked out fine but fork springs had about a half inch movement (up and down ) when on the center stand I tore them apart and totally rebuilt them from the anti dive on up I used the progressive springs like it was suggested to me of this forum installed a new front tire on it as well (it was starting to cup pretty good ) I also removed the front fairing and frame which I am sure that a lot of you will not like to here but I like the looks of the bike without the front fairing (I kept the saddle bags and trunk on ) but any way I took it for a ride and WOW what a surprise this bike is the best bike I have ever rode smooth and very comfortable even with out a wind shield that is probable the next thing that I do is install a straight wind shield on it so I can rid it in the fall
Now I know why people loves gold wings so much I had ridden this bike for about four years like it was and did not like it very much at all but now I have to say that I really like it very much and will probable keep it for a very long time so once again thank you very much for all your help




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