General Discussion Anything SuperHawk Related

New guy, old suspension?

Old 06-20-2017, 06:37 PM
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New guy, old suspension?

Hi everyone! I'm the happy new owner of a 98 1000f (firestorm here in Canada). Absolutely loving the noise and the torque. I've got a suspension question that I'm hoping someone here would have an answer to.

My vtr seems ...squirrely on slow speed turns. Left and right. Occasionally feels like it wants to fall in, and front end just seems fidgety compared to everything else I've ridden. Definitely better at fast(er) corners, but still not confidence-inspiring. Rode a friends zx today (much newer, 2006) and it felt incredibly stable in comparison - and confirmed that it's definitely not me gripping the bars too hard etc.

1) I have not set sag yet. Intend on doing this soon.
2) May need to replace rear tire, although wear doesn't look bad enough for 'fall-in' feeling
3) forks may need a rebuild

Apart from items above, is this a typical characteristic of these bikes? Or does mine have an issue that needs to be corrected? Any and all input is much appreciated!
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Old 06-20-2017, 06:57 PM
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Please don't take it as an insult but have you checked the front tire pressure? It'll make a bike downright scary in a turn if it's low, and I've ridden other people's bikes numerous times only to get off in a pretty sour mood because of this. Otherwise no it's not, these bikes are like your favorite floppy eared dog in the corners compared to a repli-racer and are pretty darn comfy and stable at a 8-9/10's pace, which by the way still used to put most everyone else in my mirrors in the corners...
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Old 06-20-2017, 07:20 PM
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Pic of said front tire please (might see a specific wear pattern). What kind of tire is it and can you find the date code?

I once rode a co-workers 929 stunt bike. It was amazing how much it wanted to fall over in turns. Felt like I had to hold it up. The front tire was fugly and I've never experienced that feeling since.
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Old 06-20-2017, 07:23 PM
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captainchaos, thank you for the reply! not sure why - but I didn't even think about tire pressure... brain just skipped that and assumed something serious. Will check first thing in the morning. Will have a good laugh at myself if that was the cause haha.
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Old 06-20-2017, 07:28 PM
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Wolverine, thank you - will post a picture in the morning. I believe the tires are metzeler sportec m1 ...which a quick internet search shows may be old.
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Old 06-20-2017, 07:47 PM
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Here's a few examples of what to look for.


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Old 06-21-2017, 01:30 AM
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How far down the tripples are the forks?

Have they been raised more than 10mm through the top

Are the steering stem bearings O.K ?

Just some random thoughts !
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Old 06-21-2017, 06:40 AM
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I'm going with tires as the main issue. Not to say there couldn't be other fixing to be done. The symptoms seem consistent with ***** rubber.

Last edited by xeris; 06-21-2017 at 06:43 AM. Reason: Add
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Old 06-21-2017, 11:38 AM
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Originally Posted by xeris View Post
The symptoms seem consistent with ***** rubber.
I was thinking wonky but it's probably ***** too
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Old 06-22-2017, 02:48 AM
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Sorry about the late response everyone - however the rear tire has me concerned. I can't find a similar marking on the front, but am going to assume the worst.
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Old 06-22-2017, 04:40 AM
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change the tyres and enjoy your new bike...
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Old 06-22-2017, 05:38 AM
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Does that say '03!?!?!?!?

Definitely time for fresh rubber if so.
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Old 06-22-2017, 06:10 PM
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Yeah, 48th week of 2003 ... yeesh. Tire shopping time!
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Old 06-22-2017, 06:13 PM
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Have any idea's on what you want?
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Old 06-22-2017, 06:36 PM
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I don't actually... any recommendations?
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Old 06-22-2017, 06:48 PM
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Kinda
I'm not passionate about pushing what I've found works. The Bridgestone BT016 is a sweet tire (front). I run a BT023r to get more miles from it. Little harder but I have no rear grip issues. I've never ran Michelin on the VTR but would like to try them.

If I could sway you, at all, I'd say stay away from Conti's (personal experience) and Shinko. Also, the Michelin Pilot Road 4's I have on the Ducati are NOT idea for sporty riding. I regret getting them. The grip level just isn't what I want in a tire.
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Old 06-22-2017, 07:14 PM
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Get the new Dunlop Roadsmart 3, and report back.
That will be the next tire I purchase.
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Old 08-21-2017, 04:16 PM
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To revive this thread - got a sweet deal on Dunlop Sportmax Q3s, so went with those.

Wanted to mount them myself - so using the correct set of tools and two more sets of hands I got them mounted up.

First impressions - I think something is a bit off with my rear wheel installation. Spacers/other parts are mounted correctly, and axle nut is torqued to spec - however I get a very minor clunk when shaking the wheel EDIT forward and back by hand. Didn't get to enjoy the ride home because I wasn't willing to explore the limits of the strange play. I'm 99% sure it didn't exist prior to pulling the rear wheel. Is it definitely wheel bearings, or would you guys say there could be something wrong with install?

Last edited by 2.5i; 08-22-2017 at 02:54 AM.
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Old 08-22-2017, 10:38 AM
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All great choices of rubber. I've almost always used Mich Pilot Power 2CT's, and have Road 4's (2CT's), on my ZX14R, best I've ever used for all conditions.
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Old 08-22-2017, 01:47 PM
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Originally Posted by 2.5i View Post
To revive this thread - got a sweet deal on Dunlop Sportmax Q3s, so went with those.

Wanted to mount them myself - so using the correct set of tools and two more sets of hands I got them mounted up.

First impressions - I think something is a bit off with my rear wheel installation. Spacers/other parts are mounted correctly, and axle nut is torqued to spec - however I get a very minor clunk when shaking the wheel EDIT forward and back by hand. Didn't get to enjoy the ride home because I wasn't willing to explore the limits of the strange play. I'm 99% sure it didn't exist prior to pulling the rear wheel. Is it definitely wheel bearings, or would you guys say there could be something wrong with install?
Wheel bearings normally present as play side to side, not rolling the wheel forwards and back. There are cush-drive damper rubbers between the drive sprocket and the wheel and these certainly lose their elasticity over time and can perish as well. I'd look there for looseness.
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Old 08-22-2017, 04:21 PM
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Thanks Cadbury64 - I will check check the rubber dampers! I can't wait to take the bike out for a good ride with these tires.
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Old 09-14-2017, 03:14 AM
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Another update. Wheel bearing on drive side was toast. Replaced all the rear bearings and Cush drive dampers - and while the bike was being worked on checked the front end. It appears steering neck bearings may be worn as well, passing centre to either side there's a slight transition bump... perhaps this also contributed to the weird sensation I felt on low speed turns. I've ridden it now for a couple hundred miles but definitely feels like I'm wrenching just as much haha. On to steering bearing replacement I go.

Edit: kenmoore called it in a post above haha.

Last edited by 2.5i; 09-14-2017 at 03:16 AM. Reason: Added ref. to post
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Old 09-14-2017, 03:36 AM
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Glad to see your making progress !

Also appears that you may be getting a mild case of OCMD !

Keep going and you will find out that these bikes respond well to some fettling.

I just did a 1400klm ride on mine to a Moto Guzzi rally and it validated why I like this bike soooo much.

Let us know how you get on, tapered stem bearings are the go!
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Old 09-14-2017, 04:12 AM
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Originally Posted by 2.5i View Post
passing centre to either side there's a slight transition bump... perhaps this also contributed to the weird sensation I felt on low speed turns. I've ridden it now for a couple hundred miles but definitely feels like I'm wrenching just as much haha. On to steering bearing replacement I go.
Highly recommend these:

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Old 09-14-2017, 08:33 AM
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Originally Posted by Wolverine View Post
Highly recommend these:

Install a set of tapered bearings and be done with it.
Don't forget when installing them the lower seal is not attached to the bearing like OEM, so you have to drop the seal on the stem FIRST, then press the bearing on.

Adjust bearings for zero free play but no preload, err on the side of just a hint of preload and you will still be fine. Be ready to readjust in a 1000 miles as lots of folks dont seem to get them installed fully and as the bearings seat you get "new" freeplay.
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Old 09-14-2017, 07:48 PM
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Thanks for the responses everyone! Just ordered the allballs kit thinking about making a race removal tool with some conduit (copying the park tool Design)... will update!
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Old 09-15-2017, 02:01 AM
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All ***** are a marked improvement over standard .

I have had 2 sets in my bike , one with the standard set up and one when I did my USD conversion.

Make sure that you check them after about 500 miles , they will need retensioning.
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Old 09-15-2017, 07:58 AM
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Originally Posted by 2.5i View Post
Thanks for the responses everyone! Just ordered the allballs kit thinking about making a race removal tool with some conduit (copying the park tool Design)... will update!
The home made version from conduit works......ONCE or so.
the conduit steel deforms easily, does not maintain the "spread"... Bout it does work..
If you will only do one set of bearings, make the tool and toss it when your done... But know a long race punch works as well.

If you think you may do other steering bearings in the future or just like to collect tools for future use.. buy the Park tool (made for bikes and is not robust enough for often uses on motorcycles)

I use and recommend the Motion pro tools for the job if your wanting a better tool for motorcycle use.
https://www.motionpro.com/product/08-0545
https://www.motionpro.com/product/08-0544
https://www.motionpro.com/product/08-0550
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Old 09-29-2017, 03:36 AM
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Steering bearings replaced! Made a tool to help press on the stem bearing that ended up being helpful. Getting the stem bearing off was not easy. Everything is torqued up now and I'm going to charge a new battery I purchased overnight tonight. Looking forward to a test ride Saturday morning !

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Old 09-29-2017, 01:57 PM
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To me, that right there is purty!

Alan
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