"Death Wobble" RESOLUTION and Introduction


Information and questions on GL1200 Goldwings (1984-1987)
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JulianR
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Nov 01, 2015 5:10 pm
Location: New Smyrna Beach , FL
Motorcycle: 1982 GL500 Interstate
1984 VT500 Ascot
1984 CB700SC
GL1200 Goldwing (Searching for ! )

"Death Wobble" RESOLUTION and Introduction

Postby JulianR » Fri Jun 24, 2016 3:39 pm



I recently solved my death wobble (35-45mph) on my 86 GL1200i with 66K miles; just wanted to share my experience to make a humble
contribution to the knowledge base for resolving this annoying problem.
I always like to try the easiest and least costly remedies when fixing a problem of unclear origin, so the first order of business ( gleaned from all the helpful forum posts here :) ) was to increase front tire pressure to 36psi and rear to 40psi; added 3 oz of dyna beads to each tire; and to increase the rear shocks air pressure to 55psi while removing all air from the front forks. These changes did not effect the death wobble at all, but did make the bike even smoother at ALL OTHER speeds (up to 80mph). Between 35-45mph the severe wobble persisted as always.

I had my local trusted shop do the following: NEW AllBalls Steering stem Bearings, NEW All Balls Front Wheel Bearings, NEW 20W Fork Oil, NEW Shinko Tourmaster Front Tire. (I don't have the tools - or the strength - to undertake these jobs myself) When I picked up the bike yesterday, the wobble was COMPLETELY gone, what a marvelous transformation!! Again, reading all the forum posts help guide me in this approach (OK, the new tire was a no brainer).

I should add that I have only had this bike since January and have covered just 2000 miles since buying it. There were no repair records, but a nice long record of oil changes, a matched set of Dunlop E3 tires (50% tread but 7 years old), and just a nice original patina with everything working as it should and a super sweet smooth engine and transmission, so I could not resist buying it. With the wobble now gone, I plan to do a lot of touring around the southeast this summer.
Again with the knowledge and encouragement form this forum, I will be changing out the timing belts this weekend along with coolant and radiator hose changes. Already have gone through all three disk brake calipers (new seals) pads and Fluid, rebuilt the clutch slave, new fuel filter, and of course oil, filter and rear diff..
The 86 Goldwing is the NEWEST Honda I have; filling out the garage next to a 82 GL500 Silverwing, 84 VT500 Ascot and an 85 CB700sc . Anyone finding themselves in Central Florida (New Smyrna Beach) is welcome anytime for a ice cold beer. This Forum is full of great information and knowledgeable folks. Thanks.



CrystalPistol
Posts: 265
Joined: Wed Mar 10, 2010 9:07 pm
Location: Shenandoah Valley of Virginia
Motorcycle: 1985 GL1200A
1997 GL1500SE Lehman Trike

Re: "Death Wobble" RESOLUTION and Introduction

Postby CrystalPistol » Fri Jun 24, 2016 8:53 pm

JulianR wrote:I recently solved my death wobble (35-45mph) on my 86 GL1200i with 66K miles;


Never experienced a death wobble on my '85 GL1200A, bought it in 1995 .... has maybe 76,xxx on it now.

Curious what conditions you had it happen under?
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RoadRogue
Posts: 1919
Joined: Sun Jun 06, 2010 10:51 pm
Location: Castlegar BC, Canada
Motorcycle: 1997 1500SE

Re: "Death Wobble" RESOLUTION and Introduction

Postby RoadRogue » Sun Jun 26, 2016 9:19 pm

First of all, Welcome to the forum for North of the 49th. Glad to hear you solved the issue with the front end wobble, thanks for sharing what worked for you. Stick around here, there is lots to learn about your bike and lots of good people to help you out when you need us. 8-)
Ride safe, Todd
Over night campers welcome

JulianR
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Nov 01, 2015 5:10 pm
Location: New Smyrna Beach , FL
Motorcycle: 1982 GL500 Interstate
1984 VT500 Ascot
1984 CB700SC
GL1200 Goldwing (Searching for ! )

Re: "Death Wobble" RESOLUTION and Introduction

Postby JulianR » Mon Jun 27, 2016 6:47 am

On my Gl1200, the wobble occurred every and any time my road speed was between 35 and 45 MPH.
Regardless of road conditions, transmission gear or whether braking accellerating of just coasting.
Finally, I would describe the wobble as quite violent - unable to ride with one hand at these speeds
or even a relaxed grip on both bars.
I know others have mentioned the wobble only durning deceleration or at higher speeds, but mine was
Very isolated, even with the wobble the bike was stable and smooth at high speed.
There was some money to be saved from doing all4 jobs at once ( front tire, wheel bearing,stem bearing, fork oil),
so Ill newver really know for sure what the proximate cause was. ( probably a little contribution from each).
Hope this helps.




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