Superbrace -> massive stiction


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Mh434
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Superbrace -> massive stiction

Post by Mh434 » Fri Jul 12, 2019 6:27 pm



So - I received and installed my new GL1500 Superbrace today. I followed the instructions precisely, including loosening the axle pinch bolts (although Superbrace's video says it's not usually necessary). It was a fiddly job, but it went together after I removed a burr from the machined edges of the underside of the brace, which stopped it from going into place. Once tightened as per the suggested pattern, I re-torqued the pinch bolts, reinstalled everything and took it for a ride.

I was never able to sense if there was an improvement, as the "stiction" has rendered the bike unrideable. The forks don't compress at all unless I hit a really big bump, and then they stay down. The only way to get them back up is to stop at the roadside, grab a bunch of front brake, and force the bike forward & back until it settles more or less in the middle.

I've tried loosening the pinch bolts & bouncing the bike up and down, then re-tightening them, to no avail. The suppleness that was there before the brace install was gone - now it's like a buckboard, with no front compliance at all.

At this point, my only option seems to be to remove the Superbrace & toss it in the trash. It was an expensive (over $100) lesson.

Anyone else had this problem, or any suggestions on how to fix it?



oldmopars
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Re: Superbrace -> massive stiction

Post by oldmopars » Fri Jul 12, 2019 6:43 pm

I have one on my bike and I do not have that issue. It sounds like the brace may be pushing out or pulling in on the forks causing them to stick. I would pull it off and check for dirt, corrosion, etc. under the brace. Could there be other Burrs or machining issues, maybe a chamfer that was not done? Possibly installed backwards?
Also check the steel under brace that is under the fender, it is possible that it is not seated right and causing a bind from the bottom.
While anything is possible, they have sold hundreds, if not thousands of those and I would think with modern CNC, it would be just that same as all the others.

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Mh434
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Re: Superbrace -> massive stiction

Post by Mh434 » Fri Jul 12, 2019 7:36 pm

Okay, an update.

I went back in, loosened the pinch bolts again, settled the bike a bunch of times & put it back together. No improvement.

Did it again, no change.

Finally (and I'd suggest everyone installing a Superbrace follow this procedure), I did the following:

1) Remove the plastic brake hose covers (just behind the fork tubes). Be careful not to break the plastic stud. Look closely at the arrangements of brackets etc. held in place by the upper disc brake cover bolt, so you can put them back in the right order. Remove the plastic disc brake covers themselves to give access to the pinch bolts, axle, and axle nut.

2) Loosen the axle nut, several turns;

3) Loosen the pinch bolts, both of them, on both sides;

4) Put a small rod through the holes in the left hand end of the axle itself, and ensure that it rotates relatively freely; In my case, it turned out that loosening the pinch bolts did NOT free up the axle completely, so binding remained, even when the pinch bolts were loosened. This procedure ensures the axle & forks are truly free to "find their own center" & avoid binding which creates stiction.

5) Install the Superbrace as per instructions (use Superbrace's online video for this. Watch it twice before starting this evolution.);

6) Take the bike down off the center stand, and compress & rebound the front forks by applying & holding lots of front brake, & pushing the bike fore and aft. SEVERAL times. The idea is to get the forks and axle to "find their own center" here.

7) Put the bike back up on center stand again.

8) Tighten the pinch bolts to recommended torque value (16 lbs/ft)

9) Tighten the axle nut to recommended torque value (65 lbs/ft)

10) Re-install the disc brake covers and fender hose covers.

Take it for a ride, and see how it is. IF it's still sticky (very unlikely after this procedure, IMHO), start again, points 1 through 10 (excluding #5).

___________________________________________________________________________________

That's what it took to get it to work properly on my bike. Granted, others may be "lucky", but then again, they may not. I have NEVER been accused of having good luck!

There's nothing wrong with the procedure I've outlined, and it really doesn't take much longer than the minimal one suggested by Superbrace. IMHO, it absolutely ensures a minimum of "stiction" (mine still has a tiny bit, but it's probably 90% back to free movement).

I hope someone else benefits from this.

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Mh434
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Re: Superbrace -> massive stiction

Post by Mh434 » Fri Jul 12, 2019 8:11 pm

I should add that, once I got it working properly, the bike has returned almost entirely to its silky-smooth front suspension feel.

As far as the brace's influence is concerned, it does seem a bit more "planted", and very low speed maneuvers seem a little easier & secure.

Tomorrow, I'm going on a lengthy ride with my local GWRRA chapter, over widely varying speeds and road surfaces. I'll report back with a more in-depth report of the brace's effects.

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Re: Superbrace -> massive stiction

Post by Happytrails » Fri Jul 12, 2019 8:27 pm

Glad you got it. It gets annoying when simple things don't go as planned! :D

I've never seen a superbrace up close so I'm not sure how it mounts but I noticed when I installed a blackwing brace that there was casting ridges left over on the front fork lowers that could cause the brace to put outward pressure on the fork tubes. I guess I was lucky and didn't run into any issues but I could see how that might for others. If it would have caused a problem I would have dremeled that leftover casting stuff off. The blackwing instructions might have pointed this out but I'm not sure because I installed it so long ago.
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AZgl1800
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Re: Superbrace -> massive stiction

Post by AZgl1800 » Fri Jul 12, 2019 11:56 pm

That procedure you just went thru, is the exact same thing that must be done when you change a tire.

Very critical to do it just like you said.

I have had the SuperBrace on 4 Goldwings, and everyone benefited from the brace.

the "difference" is not noted except under 10 mph, actually more like under 5 mph doing turns...

if you ever ride on a grassy lawn, or loose dirt, you will appreciate that brace really fast.

My '94SE did not have a brace when I acquired it. where I parked, I had to back out of the garage, turn to the right, and cross a small flower garden and turn right again at the same time. I would notice the handlebars twisted to the right about 10° and the front wheel did not turn.... that is a lot of twist in those forks.

installed the brace, and that problem disappeared.
~John

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Mh434
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Re: Superbrace -> massive stiction

Post by Mh434 » Sat Jul 13, 2019 7:09 pm

Okay, I promised a review.

First, I think I've returned the front suspension compliance to what it was before I added the Superbrace. The roads we were on today range from smooth highway, to bumpy secondary roads, to a windy, swooping highway with lots of frost heave whoops, potholes, and grooved areas.

The bike behaved extremely well, riding at least as good as the best of the GL1800's (the rest of the pack). Turn-in is crisper than before, and the bike holds its line better than before. I wasn't able to provoke it into "catching" in grooves at all.

All in all, a definite (if somewhat subtle) improvement.

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Re: Superbrace -> massive stiction

Post by Happytrails » Sat Jul 13, 2019 7:12 pm

Good to hear it worked out so good. How was your GWRRA ride? :)
1991 GL1500 SE Anniversary Edition
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Mh434
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Re: Superbrace -> massive stiction

Post by Mh434 » Sat Jul 13, 2019 9:13 pm

It was great, or as good as could be expected.

My wife of 24 years deserted me a couple of months ago (I never saw it coming), and is openly having an affair with another member of my GWRRA chapter, and all the chapter members are fully aware of it. As you can imagine, this made it extremely awkward for me (although the two of them chose not to go today, after checking with other members this morning & confirming that I was there).

Surprisingly, the worst part for me was the loneliness of not having her behind me, chatting with me on the intercom as we rode. I've never gone on a longer ride without her behind me. After almost 1/4 century of companionship, it's hard riding alone, having no one to share with.

Sadly, everything else in my life is crumbling around me, too. I never knew I had this much inner strength, just to be able to get out of bed & function every day.

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Re: Superbrace -> massive stiction

Post by Happytrails » Sun Jul 14, 2019 6:04 am

Sorry to hear about that. :| That does sound ackward. Hope things get better for you there.
1991 GL1500 SE Anniversary Edition
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Mh434
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Re: Superbrace -> massive stiction

Post by Mh434 » Sun Jul 14, 2019 10:21 am

Thanks - it’s going to be ver, very hard for me. Inexplicably, I still love her despite what she’s done to me, which makes it even more difficult.

I see a long and rough road ahead of me.

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4given
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Re: Superbrace -> massive stiction

Post by 4given » Mon Jul 15, 2019 7:00 am

Praying for you Mh434.



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