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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well I was surprised the other day while enjoying the sunshine here in west Michigan, I was moving along in town about ah...maybe 15 mph or so, and as I quite frequently do (ya I know...blah blah blah) took my hands off the bars for a minute and the dang front end began to shimmy like crazy! WTF......I never had that happen before. Fortunately the minute I touched the bars, it stopped.
Now I frequently ride no handed at higher speeds to strech or relax my grip etc, and never felt any thing like that.
Idea's????
 

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Theres a thread concerning this on a 13 Road Glide Ultra. Local Dealer tightened the steering head and it cured the problem. Check with your dealer there is supposed to be a new torque spec on them.
 

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Check tire pressure also. Low pressure contributes to tire cupping which also contributes to wobble as you describe. Most new machines wind up needing the neck bearings tightened within the first 10,000 miles and yours is probably no exception. That is the most frequent fix for low speed wobble. My wobble happened right at 35 mph and tightening the neck bearings fixed that also.
 

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Had the same thing happen to me on my 2012. Brought it back to the dealer. They gave me the "It's Harley Davidson's position that when operating the motorcycle, the operator should ride with both hands on the handlebars." to which I replied "Well, it is MY position that if I pay $26,000 for a motorcycle, the front end shouldn't wobble, regardless of where I choose to have my hands, and if you ever intend to sell me another one in the future, it will be fixed!" They tightened up the steering head (a real pain on the ultra and which I think they were attempting to get out of doing) and I have had no problems since.
 

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Theres a thread concerning this on a 13 Road Glide Ultra. Local Dealer tightened the steering head and it cured the problem. Check with your dealer there is supposed to be a new torque spec on them.
That was me. 25 miles on a new bike.

Dealer tightened to the top end of the new spec and cured the issue. But it still makes me wonder.

Also in my thread, someone mentioned that his buddy had the same issue on his '13 RG Ultra. When he took the tour pack off, it went away. When he put it back on, the shake came back. It's strange that 25 lbs aft of the rear axle can make the front end that light that it will do the old tank slapper rotuine.

My '06 RG never had this issue with or without the Tour Pack. But the '13 does seem to handle better.

take it back to the dealer and tell them to adjust it to the upper end of the new spec as per the MoCo and it should be fine. Still a bit scarry when it happens though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the replies.....
I will be taking it into my dealer to get the front tightened up..
 

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Low tire pressure and loose steering head bearings caused my 2012 ultra to develop a bad shimmy while slowing down. (around 25 mph). I adjusted them myself at 17k miles, and bike is perfect. Get a shop manual. Anyone can do this procedure. Make sure you adjust to the tight side of the fall away spec. :thumbsup:
 

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I have this happen whenever my front tire gets around 10K on it. It's cupping for me anyway. New tire solved problem. If tires not cupping, the I'd be looking at the bearings also.
Looks like from your sig, (hard for these old eyes to tell, but is that the new type fairing?) that you bought a '14 ??????
That would work too !
 

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I've had this problem since day one on a '11 RG Ultra. Bearing grease and tire pressures are critical to prevent this condition at about 35 MPH while decelerating. The Dealer adjusted the bearings at 20 miles on the clock, and the break-away is still pristine so I don't want to adjust at this point (42K miles). I've also read that swing arm pivot bushings / isolators might cause it to wobble, so that is on my list to inspect next.
 

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My 2012 ultra classic developed a wobbble in the front end around 17k miles. It got pretty bad, and most noticable upon deceleration around 25mph. Dealer installed new front tire, but problem continued. I bought a shop manual, and adjusted steering head bearings to spec. 95% of wobble was gone. I pulled it all back apart, and tightened strng head a little more, and problem is solved. This is an easy repair, just make sure you go on tight side of spec. Low front tire pressure will also cause wobble.
:clap:
 

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Sounds like you are on the right track with the steering head being loose. One thing to consider is the air in your rear shocks as well. Are you loaded with stuff in the tour pack and saddle bags? This can cause the bike to squat in the back a bit and change the rake a bit. Just like removing the tour pack mentioned on an earlier post. I had one do it to me as soon as I lifted off of the throttle but went away as I squeezed the front brake. Tire pressure, cupping, all of these things can cause this.. it might be a combination of them.
 

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Does anyone know the number on the TSB? I'm having issues with mine and they can't seem to find anything wrong.

I had a small weave on sweeping turns for some time. However, last weekend at about 80-90 mph it was enough to scare me.
 

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Does anyone know the number on the TSB? I'm having issues with mine and they can't seem to find anything wrong.

I had a small weave on sweeping turns for some time. However, last weekend at about 80-90 mph it was enough to scare me.
That sounds more like the rear steer issue than neck bearings to me. They don't acknowledge it (as far as I know?). It's from the trans + swingarm being mounted together at the shared rubber pivot point.
A bagger brace or tru-track type device would likely be the fix for this IMO.
I've been experiencing a similar thing too on my 13 lately that I think is this (reminds me of my FXR when it started needing new cleave blocks in the s/a.
It's only in right-hand sweepers where I hit a hump/bump in the road at speeds above 65 or so.
 

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I had it happen to me again yesterday. 3K on the bike. yea, I know, I need to get out and ride more. had slowed down to about 25 as I was adjusting myself and didn't have my hands on the bars.

Only thing that is different, I had put the tour pack back on as I was taking my daughter around town. She wasn't on the bike with me at the time. Seems the extra weight hanging out past the rear tire is what causes the issue. basically a nad design by harley. I had been told this before about the extra weight, now I just proved it.

without the tourpack on, it dosen't seem to be an issue.
 

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I have had a poor handling problem that became noticeable to me at 16,ooo miles. My Limited now has 49,000 miles. Having gone through the troubleshooting process starting with the basics like tire pressure, tire replacement and head bearing adjustment at a dealer. I have also adjusted the head bearings twice myself to cure the tank slap. I upgraded the suspension to the Harley premium ride shocks and fork cartridges. Installed a True -Track rear stabilizer. The handling continued to deteriorate. The steering became very heavy and difficult. Had to push/pull the bars hard and shift my weight for any corner. Uneven pavement in a corner would cause the wobble. I found a recent ad in American Iron for a True-Track front stabilizer. That install corrected about 90% of the problem. The good people at True-Track confirmed my suspicions that the front motor mounts were bad. Had a indy install the new mounts. More improvement. Another call to True-Track. I was told to pull the plastic cap off the swing arm pivot and inspect the rear motor mounts. I found a lot of ground up rubber from those mounts. Obviously worn out. It is now at the indy shop to have the rear mounts replaced. I am confident the handling will be restored to a like new condition with the rear mount replacement. The added stabilizers should prevent expensive motor mount replacement in the future.
 

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I have had a poor handling problem that became noticeable to me at 16,ooo miles. My Limited now has 49,000 miles. Having gone through the troubleshooting process starting with the basics like tire pressure, tire replacement and head bearing adjustment at a dealer. I have also adjusted the head bearings twice myself to cure the tank slap. I upgraded the suspension to the Harley premium ride shocks and fork cartridges. Installed a True -Track rear stabilizer. The handling continued to deteriorate. The steering became very heavy and difficult. Had to push/pull the bars hard and shift my weight for any corner. Uneven pavement in a corner would cause the wobble. I found a recent ad in American Iron for a True-Track front stabilizer. That install corrected about 90% of the problem. The good people at True-Track confirmed my suspicions that the front motor mounts were bad. Had a indy install the new mounts. More improvement. Another call to True-Track. I was told to pull the plastic cap off the swing arm pivot and inspect the rear motor mounts. I found a lot of ground up rubber from those mounts. Obviously worn out. It is now at the indy shop to have the rear mounts replaced. I am confident the handling will be restored to a like new condition with the rear mount replacement. The added stabilizers should prevent expensive motor mount replacement in the future.

Great news Scott.

I'd like to add that in my case in my FXR I mentioned in my earlier post was totally cured with new mounts also. Made it into an entirely new bike to ride!

With my 13 Ultra it was the rear tire. Even at only 5000/6000 miles the wear on the back tire was bad enough to be at fault. Honestly it was flat spotted down the center so badly I'm embarrassed I didn't catch it earlier.
I just never expected a tire to wear that fast. But anyway it's back to riding great now.

I believe you're on it though. The torque of these 103's in a bike as heavy as an Ultra will destroy rubber mounts in no time flat. I'm going to say they should be replaced every 10-12K miles, or every other rear tire change based on the fact that the ones on my FXR were as bad as they were at 16,000 (though as I understand it the b/c series design mounts in the Ultra's are a bit stiffer than the A-Series in my FXR were?)

Either way I can't stress enough how much of a difference motor mounts will make in the way ANY rubber mounted HD will handle, or how quickly they can deteriorate. In fact I was out for a ride lastnight for the first time in a few weeks and it feels about like my front may be getting soft, as it was shaking noticeably more than it used to.
Will be giving it a good look over the winter along with Tru-Trac stabilizers as I believe these may be key in prolonging the mounts life.
 

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Thanks for your reply and input. Glad to hear your situation was so easily remedied with a new tire. The motor mount is not an inexpensive venture. Front and rear parts only are in the $175.00 range. The labor is adding up quick also. I hope the addition of the True-Track stabilizers gets me farther down the road before having to replace mounts again. I ride an average of 12,000 miles on this bike annually.
It took me a fair amount of searching on the forums to find information regarding this handling problem. I am surprised more riders have not weighed in on this. I would think that it will be talked about more in the near future. Thanks again for your time and energy.
 

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I believe it will be more pronounced as owner's mileage builds.
 
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