Steering head bearings


Information and questions on GL1800 Goldwings (2001-2017)
Post Reply
User avatar
Mountain rider
Posts: 201
Joined: Sun May 14, 2017 9:03 pm
Location: Rigby, Idaho
Motorcycle: 2003 Goldwing 1800

Steering head bearings

Post by Mountain rider »



I've got an 03 1800 and while I'm fussing with the front end, brakes, tire, ect., I thought it might be a good time to check, service, or replace those bearings. Just how involved is resetting the torque? I'd prefer to keep it simple for now if possible. If replacing or servicing them, I'm assuming you'd have to remove the front forks and remove the triple tree. Since there's nothing to cause me to be overly concerned right now, I'd plan that for the next Winter upgrades and just re-torque them for now. Of course, if I find something bad, I'll go ahead and just do it.


SFC, U.S. Army Artillery, Retired
Now, fully retired
User avatar
Asphaltmaniac
Posts: 294
Joined: Wed Oct 11, 2017 11:57 am
Location: Sparks Nevada
Motorcycle: 1977 Honda 550K. Sold.
1986 1200 Aspencade. Purchased as a non current brand new in the box 1988. Sold.
2006 1800 Goldwing
2017 BMW 1200 GS Adventure...

Re: Steering head bearings

Post by Asphaltmaniac »

Mountain rider wrote: Mon Mar 11, 2019 12:22 am I've got an 03 1800 and while I'm fussing with the front end, brakes, tire, ect., I thought it might be a good time to check, service, or replace those bearings. Just how involved is resetting the torque? I'd prefer to keep it simple for now if possible. If replacing or servicing them, I'm assuming you'd have to remove the front forks and remove the triple tree. Since there's nothing to cause me to be overly concerned right now, I'd plan that for the next Winter upgrades and just re-torque them for now. Of course, if I find something bad, I'll go ahead and just do it.
If there are no issues. I wouldn't touch them unless to replace with new or the tapered kind. I did replace mine with the tapered, and followed the torque procedure and spec as per the bearing manufacturer. If you need one,DHS Racing in San Diego sells the steering stem spanner wrench.
User avatar
keithg64
Posts: 743
Joined: Thu May 21, 2009 9:47 pm
Location: Geneseo, IL
Motorcycle: 2007 Gl1800HPNA Blue
2000 GL1500 Pearl Coranado Blue -sold

Re: Steering head bearings

Post by keithg64 »

Yeah if there is no issue and your planning on replacing it next year, I would wait. It does require a special notch socket for a proper torque setting. However if you decide to replace go with the tapered all balls brand. And let us know.
It's not what you buy, it's what you build.
User avatar
GoldWingrGreg
Posts: 811
Joined: Tue Aug 24, 2010 7:18 am
Location: Zephyrhills, Florida
Motorcycle: 89 GL1500
03 GL1800
04 GL1800(abs)
05 GL1800(abs)
07 GL1800(abs)
Contact:

Re: Steering head bearings

Post by GoldWingrGreg »

Mountain rider wrote: Mon Mar 11, 2019 12:22 am Of course, if I find something bad, I'll go ahead and just do it.
To test, on a flat road in 5th gear at 50mph, let go of the bars and allow the Wing to decelerate. Check for pulls left and right, and for handlebar wobble. Any wobble ???
User avatar
tfdeputydawg
Posts: 1139
Joined: Sun Nov 22, 2009 6:59 am
Location: Indianapolis, In.
Motorcycle: 06 Wing III/2010 Hannigan

Re: Steering head bearings

Post by tfdeputydawg »

GoldWingrGreg wrote: Tue Mar 12, 2019 1:01 am
Mountain rider wrote: Mon Mar 11, 2019 12:22 am Of course, if I find something bad, I'll go ahead and just do it.
To test, on a flat road in 5th gear at 50mph, let go of the bars and allow the Wing to decelerate. Check for pulls left and right, and for handlebar wobble. Any wobble ???
As a decel wobble happens on most Wings, what would your test prove??????
User avatar
Mountain rider
Posts: 201
Joined: Sun May 14, 2017 9:03 pm
Location: Rigby, Idaho
Motorcycle: 2003 Goldwing 1800

Re: Steering head bearings

Post by Mountain rider »

GoldWingrGreg wrote: Tue Mar 12, 2019 1:01 am
Mountain rider wrote: Mon Mar 11, 2019 12:22 am Of course, if I find something bad, I'll go ahead and just do it.
To test, on a flat road in 5th gear at 50mph, let go of the bars and allow the Wing to decelerate. Check for pulls left and right, and for handlebar wobble. Any wobble ???
I'll do that once I get her back together. It's finally warming up enough that my driveway is no longer white and I don't see my breath all day in the garage. ;) I'll get the new Progressive spring installed on the rear shock and the new braided pre-load hose in as well. I'm pretty sure everything will be happy, but better safe than sorry. Thanks for all the replies.
SFC, U.S. Army Artillery, Retired
Now, fully retired
User avatar
GoldWingrGreg
Posts: 811
Joined: Tue Aug 24, 2010 7:18 am
Location: Zephyrhills, Florida
Motorcycle: 89 GL1500
03 GL1800
04 GL1800(abs)
05 GL1800(abs)
07 GL1800(abs)
Contact:

Re: Steering head bearings

Post by GoldWingrGreg »

tfdeputydawg wrote: Tue Mar 12, 2019 5:38 am
GoldWingrGreg wrote: Tue Mar 12, 2019 1:01 am
Mountain rider wrote: Mon Mar 11, 2019 12:22 am Of course, if I find something bad, I'll go ahead and just do it.
To test, on a flat road in 5th gear at 50mph, let go of the bars and allow the Wing to decelerate. Check for pulls left and right, and for handlebar wobble. Any wobble ???
As a decel wobble happens on most Wings, what would your test prove??????
That tapered bearings are likely needed to get rid of it. Basically, that is one of the best ways to know that steering head bearings are loose. Another test is during parking lot maneuvers. Lots of steering correction in the middle of turns indicates loose steering head bearings too. However, that is more for a rider that is able to recognize it. Many become accustom to it.
User avatar
Mountain rider
Posts: 201
Joined: Sun May 14, 2017 9:03 pm
Location: Rigby, Idaho
Motorcycle: 2003 Goldwing 1800

Re: Steering head bearings

Post by Mountain rider »

Thanks for all the info, much appreciated. Well, she's finally back together so we went for a quick ride. 50MPH and decelerating, no wobble. 45MPH, set the cruise and let go, no wobble or drift, just cruising in a straight line. She's good for this season, but I think I'll do them as an upgrade next Winter. Thanks again.
SFC, U.S. Army Artillery, Retired
Now, fully retired
User avatar
Asphaltmaniac
Posts: 294
Joined: Wed Oct 11, 2017 11:57 am
Location: Sparks Nevada
Motorcycle: 1977 Honda 550K. Sold.
1986 1200 Aspencade. Purchased as a non current brand new in the box 1988. Sold.
2006 1800 Goldwing
2017 BMW 1200 GS Adventure...

Re: Steering head bearings

Post by Asphaltmaniac »

Mountain rider wrote: Mon Mar 18, 2019 9:26 pm Thanks for all the info, much appreciated. Well, she's finally back together so we went for a quick ride. 50MPH and decelerating, no wobble. 45MPH, set the cruise and let go, no wobble or drift, just cruising in a straight line. She's good for this season, but I think I'll do them as an upgrade next Winter. Thanks again.
Good work Sargent! Now ride, and thats an order!
User avatar
Mountain rider
Posts: 201
Joined: Sun May 14, 2017 9:03 pm
Location: Rigby, Idaho
Motorcycle: 2003 Goldwing 1800

Re: Steering head bearings

Post by Mountain rider »

Asphaltmaniac wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 10:07 am
Mountain rider wrote: Mon Mar 18, 2019 9:26 pm Thanks for all the info, much appreciated. Well, she's finally back together so we went for a quick ride. 50MPH and decelerating, no wobble. 45MPH, set the cruise and let go, no wobble or drift, just cruising in a straight line. She's good for this season, but I think I'll do them as an upgrade next Winter. Thanks again.
Good work Sargent! Now ride, and that's an order!
Sir, yes sir, sir. :D
SFC, U.S. Army Artillery, Retired
Now, fully retired
User avatar
Asphaltmaniac
Posts: 294
Joined: Wed Oct 11, 2017 11:57 am
Location: Sparks Nevada
Motorcycle: 1977 Honda 550K. Sold.
1986 1200 Aspencade. Purchased as a non current brand new in the box 1988. Sold.
2006 1800 Goldwing
2017 BMW 1200 GS Adventure...

Re: Steering head bearings

Post by Asphaltmaniac »

Mountain rider wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 1:25 pm
Asphaltmaniac wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 10:07 am
Mountain rider wrote: Mon Mar 18, 2019 9:26 pm Thanks for all the info, much appreciated. Well, she's finally back together so we went for a quick ride. 50MPH and decelerating, no wobble. 45MPH, set the cruise and let go, no wobble or drift, just cruising in a straight line. She's good for this season, but I think I'll do them as an upgrade next Winter. Thanks again.
Good work Sargent! Now ride, and that's an order!
Sir, yes sir, sir. :D
Be safe out there sarge :D


Post Reply