Wheel alignment seems off


Information and questions on GL1000 Goldwings (1975-1979)
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goldwingingit
Posts: 42
Joined: Wed Oct 18, 2017 9:46 pm
Location: Seattle, WA
Motorcycle: 1978 GL1000 Naked

Wheel alignment seems off

Post by goldwingingit »



I recently bought a running 78 GL1000 that seemed to be in good shape. It has low miles (16k) but I realized the steering head bearings were totally shot. The bike would drift and was difficult to steer.

While I was doing that, I put drag bars on. Now, the steering feels much better, but the bike feels like it pulls to the right. It also seems like the bars are a little skew! :shock: There doesn't seem to be a way to adjust the rear wheel, and I'm not sure where to start.The forks seem like they're in evenly, so where else do I look?

What do you reckon?


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SnoBrdr
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Location: Providence, Rhode Island
Motorcycle: 1978 GL 1000

131K Original Owner

Re: Wheel alignment seems off

Post by SnoBrdr »

goldwingingit wrote: Sun Mar 24, 2019 1:23 pm I recently bought a running 78 GL1000 that seemed to be in good shape. It has low miles (16k) but I realized the steering head bearings were totally shot. The bike would drift and was difficult to steer.

While I was doing that, I put drag bars on. Now, the steering feels much better, but the bike feels like it pulls to the right. It also seems like the bars are a little skew! :shock: There doesn't seem to be a way to adjust the rear wheel, and I'm not sure where to start.The forks seem like they're in evenly, so where else do I look?

What do you reckon?
Is the front wheel rod equal on both sides?

Is the rear wheel spacer installed?

Are the bars bent?
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goldwingingit
Posts: 42
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Location: Seattle, WA
Motorcycle: 1978 GL1000 Naked

Re: Wheel alignment seems off

Post by goldwingingit »

I'm not sure what you mean by wheel rod, do you mean the front axle? It's installed in the correct orientation with the nut side sitting snug on the outer side of the clamps.

The bars are new!

I don't know about the spacer on the rear wheel, so that's where I'll look next.
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SnoBrdr
Posts: 784
Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2014 9:01 am
Location: Providence, Rhode Island
Motorcycle: 1978 GL 1000

131K Original Owner

Re: Wheel alignment seems off

Post by SnoBrdr »

goldwingingit wrote: Sun Mar 24, 2019 4:52 pm I'm not sure what you mean by wheel rod, do you mean the front axle? It's installed in the correct orientation with the nut side sitting snug on the outer side of the clamps.

The bars are new!

I don't know about the spacer on the rear wheel, so that's where I'll look next.
Yes, for some reason I blanked on the word "axle".
Old Fogey
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Location: Glasgow Scotland
Motorcycle: 1976 GL1000
1979 GL1000
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Re: Wheel alignment seems off

Post by Old Fogey »

Loosen all the fork clamps, even the bolts holding the fender but not the axle clamps, and bounce the front end a few times. Tichten everything up and recheck the axle clamps. If you still have problems, check to see if the rear wheel is sitting vertically. Swing arm are not strong and have been know to twist (from experience!). Also, with the bike on the centre stand, try pulling the rear wheel side to side to check if the swing arm bearings and wheel bearings are ok.
'Impossible' is just a level of difficulty! The only stupid question is the one you didn't ask first!

( Seriously, you haven't read all 115 pages of my http://www.wingovations.com website ?? :shock: )
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ekvh
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Location: Grand Forks, ND
Motorcycle: 1977 gl1000

Re: Wheel alignment seems off

Post by ekvh »

I’m not an engineer. Take this with a grain of engineering salt.

Make sure your fork tubes are dead-even in the clamps for height. On my 77, I have found that 1/16” difference can cause what you’re feeling. Picture one fork tube up 2-3” and the other where it should be, and think of how that affects the axle.

In the shop, static pressure on the axle from the fork springs will look similar, but on the road with dynamic load on each side, one spring will be exerting quite a different load on the axle sides. With the 37mm wobbly 1000 fork tubes, there is enough flex to allow deflection.


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