Grinding Noise Coming From Front Wheel Area


Information and questions on GL1200 Goldwings (1984-1987)
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jayhawker
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Motorcycle: 1984 GL1200A Limted Edition

Grinding Noise Coming From Front Wheel Area

Postby jayhawker » Thu Jul 16, 2015 8:40 pm



A year ago or so I had someone rebuild my front forks on a GL1200A. Ever since then I've had problems of different types. The first thing I noticed was when the brakes were applied coming up to a stop the front end would go down and not return to up position until I started up again which was quite different than it was before having them done. It wasn't no time only 4K miles before it was leaking oil. Some time in that 4K I started noticing a grinding feeling coming up into the handle bars especially at low speeds under 20 MPH. It had me worried about taking it very far so I replaced the front wheel bearing but that has failed to fix the problem. I'm needing some advice on where to look next for remedy to my problem. I don't believe it is something in the motor as I can feel it with the clutch disengaged and the engine at idle while coasting. Another thing I should mention is when I put the bike on the kick stand it sets up kind of straight but will all of a sudden lean more making you think it is going to fall over all this after having the forks redone. I've come to the conclusion that if you want something done right you had better do it yourself.



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Bluewaterhooker0
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Re: Grinding Noise Coming From Front Wheel Area

Postby Bluewaterhooker0 » Thu Jul 16, 2015 9:16 pm

I have a 1500, not 1200, but had a similar situation once. I had just installed an aftermarket fork brace, that was VERY tight fitting between the forks. Tight enough that it ever so slightly pushed the forks outward at at point of installation. I immediately experienced a very rough ride, and sticking forks as you describe. I had to go back in and grind the brace a very small amount, so that it fit properly against the forks, remount it, and all was good. I think it is referred to as 'sticktion'. Where the forks do travel, but not as smoothly as they should. Have no ideas on the grinding noise. But it does sound like your forks are out of alignment.

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jayhawker
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Re: Grinding Noise Coming From Front Wheel Area

Postby jayhawker » Thu Jul 16, 2015 9:40 pm

The fork brace is the same one that was on the bike before the fork job. Was told by a Honda parts man that it could have air in the tubes that is causing the sticking, not sure that would do it though. As far as the vibration that I feel I was wondering if brake pads could be the problem even when no break is applied??

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WingAdmin
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Re: Grinding Noise Coming From Front Wheel Area

Postby WingAdmin » Fri Jul 17, 2015 10:08 am

If it is the brake pads causing the vibration, then applying the brakes (lightly) - and remember, you need to apply front AND rear brakes, in order to get both front calipers to actuate - will eliminate the vibration for as long as they are applied.

The fact that the forks are compressing and not rebounding when coming to a stop means there is something sticking that shouldn't be. They did put fork oil in the forks when they rebuilt them, right?

Perhaps they did not reassemble the front end correctly. There is a very specific sequence to tightening the front end after this sort of work, having to do with the axle and axle keepers, to make sure that misalignment is not introduced.

However, if you have been noticing this since the fork rebuild, and it has now progressed to where you are feeling grinding, I suspect you are now in need of another fork rebuild. You should have taken this back to the original mechanic when you realized the front end was not working like it should have.

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jayhawker
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Re: Grinding Noise Coming From Front Wheel Area

Postby jayhawker » Fri Jul 17, 2015 9:46 pm

To call the guy a mechanic would be to give him some credit that he knew what he was doing. When I replaced the front wheel bearing I discovered that he had installed the fork axle caps on backwards and today I noticed that the fork brace was also installed backwards. The axle nut was at lease 50 pounds over torque specs and it was what caused the bearings to fail. He was to replace not only seals but bushing as well but I'm sure if he did they to are installed backwards. The Honda shop would not work on the bike because of its age so this guy was referred to my by a friend. Some friend wouldn't you say. I just hope that it is able to be repaired instead of being a total lost. Yes he did put in oil and today it everywhere except in the fork. Where would you suggest I purchase the needed parts to rebuild the forks? Can I get a complete kit with all the needs parts?

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jamie f
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Re: Grinding Noise Coming From Front Wheel Area

Postby jamie f » Fri Jul 17, 2015 10:03 pm

i just refreshed my front forks with new seals and dust wipers and fresh oil.it was a fairly simple procedure,with the exception of reinstalling the caps.it takes a great deal of pressure to compress upper spring into shock,let alone starting the threads.if you weren't there when he "rebuilt" them it wouldn't surprise me if he left them out.that would explain the front end not returning to full height,could also cause seal failure due to "free fall" of upper fork into lower fork.as far as honda parts man saying they may have air in them,isn't your wing air suspension?anyway,i guess i'd start at forks and see if both springs are in each shock.sorry about the rant,your story brang up memories of my previous owner "stories" of "recent repairs"

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jayhawker
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Re: Grinding Noise Coming From Front Wheel Area

Postby jayhawker » Fri Jul 17, 2015 10:30 pm

Today we went on a ride that entailed a lot of curves and I had to increase the air pressure in the front forks and with just three bars on the gauge it cause most of the oil to leak out. It never did hold air with out causing an oil leak ever since the jerk redone the forks. I've been just running without much air pressure trying to put off the repair as long as I could. The guy charged me $400 to basically ruin the whole thing. I did take it back after the right fort leaked all the oil out in one night he said he replaced the seals but I doubt he did anything except pout in some oil. Is there some law against people who falsely represent themselves has human beings? If not there should be.

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jayhawker
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Re: Grinding Noise Coming From Front Wheel Area

Postby jayhawker » Sun Jul 19, 2015 10:21 pm

update, torn into the forks this weekend and figured out what parts are needed. The forks were supposedly rebuilt 4K miles ago and the right fork again just 3 weeks ago. Question, the oil I drained out today looked like the oil that came out of my diesel truck after about 6 or 7K miles. Could the oil get that bad in 4K miles had it been changed?? I'm finding out more every time I look at something the guy did. How would you handle the situation with this so called mechanic? Confront him or chock it up to experience??

oldbikes
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Re: Grinding Noise Coming From Front Wheel Area

Postby oldbikes » Mon Jul 20, 2015 7:03 am

On going back to the fellow that repaired the bike I would just forget about him. It's critical to have good quality workmanship done on suspension / brake parts so my advice is stay away from him.

The parts are marked as to front and rear on the fork brace and also on the caps on the front axle, It sounds like the caps on the front axle are not on correctly or worse only one is pointed to the front. Little hard to see arrows on the side of the caps should point to the front. The grinding is likely coming from a brake caliper.

Use high quality seals to repair and new copper washers where needed. Buying on price alone isn't a good idea in this area. The proper oil is also a must.
Before rebuilding you should check the upper fork tubes for scratches, nicks etc that will quickly tear up the new seals.
At this point you will also need new brake pads as the old ones will have oil on them and won't work up to capacity.

Finding someone you trust is difficult if you don't want to do the job yourself, try to find someone that is a retired mechanic from a motorcycle dealership or someone that has a passion for motorcycles and isn't just interested in turning a fast buck. Look around the workshop if it is sloppy then the sloppiness will spill over to the work that is done.
Best of luck on getting the Wing back together.

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WingAdmin
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Re: Grinding Noise Coming From Front Wheel Area

Postby WingAdmin » Mon Jul 20, 2015 1:00 pm

No chance that oil has been changed then. It sounds like the guy did the absolute minimum amount of work, and fleeced you of your $400, screwing up your bike in the process.

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jayhawker
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Re: Grinding Noise Coming From Front Wheel Area

Postby jayhawker » Mon Jul 20, 2015 10:47 pm

I have ran across another question that I need some advice on. My manual suggest that i measure the spring length for the two springs in each fork and if they are less than specs that I should replace them. How critical is that and what problems could I encounter should I go ahead and use them though they are a little shorter than what they should be. Could a spacer be installed between the two spring to bring the combined length in to tolerance. I don't want to do something that might make the bike unsafe, any suggestions.




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