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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old Apr 20th, 2017, 4:57 pm Thread Starter
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handling improvement question

Hi All,

My 07 Sport Classic can get a lil squirrelly on the road from time to time. Was wondering if a steering dampener or a change of wheels/tires would help more. Any and all input would be appreciated. Thanks.

jeff
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old Apr 20th, 2017, 7:01 pm
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A steering damper is just a bandaid to cover the problem.
You need to start with basics and find your problem. Set the sag, adjust the dampers.
Wouldn't hurt to change the oil in your forks and shock.
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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old Apr 20th, 2017, 7:08 pm
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Lots of tips on this if you do a search. Pirrelli phantoms that came on a lot of these, felt squirrelly. Lighter, tubeless rims and tires do make a big difference. Stock suspension was not great either.
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old Apr 21st, 2017, 3:04 pm
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Lighter wheels, better suspension, better tires, steering damper. that's the basic.

the stock wheels are extremely heavy, so if you replace them with lighter wheels like forged marchesinis etc... you will save about 20lbs in wheel weight alone.

stiffer front and rear suspension will also help tremendously. they make tube inserts if you don't want to swap out forks, but you can probably find adjustable SHOA forks from a Monster etc... they are direct bolt on.

Ohlins on the rear is also very helpful.

it's not cheap, but then your bike will handle like a proper sports bike.
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old Apr 23rd, 2017, 8:42 am
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Of all the "stuff" I've done to my '06 S1K nothing came close to the quantum leap in handling improvement that I experienced when I swapping out the stock spoke wheels for alloy's. It felt like an entirely new bike and I wasn't even terribly unhappy with the stock set up since I had never ridden a bike newer than my 1974 Norton Commando. Going from that dinosaur (in it's defense, it's a pretty good handling dinosaur) to the S1K was a revelation in braking, engine performance and handling. I changed the wheels only because I wanted the ability to plug a flat on the back roads in North Carolina where I was heading and where help (no cell service) might not be available. I was shocked at the vast improvement in the bikes handling which I already thought was pretty good. I have since installed Andreani cartridges and although they did make an improvement, it wasn't nearly as dramatic as the wheel swap. I can't imagine how awesome it would make a heavy steel wheeled GT feel to go to Carbon wheels that weigh nothing. Bottom line is there is no single mod you can do that will make your bikes handling feel dramatically better than going to lighter wheels. In my experience, that should be your first priority.

Enjoy your new ride.
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old Apr 23rd, 2017, 9:26 am
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Something isn't right. Figure out what it is before you blow a bunch of money on farkles. Loose spokes ? Tires ? Steering head brgs loose ? Swingarm brgs ? Wheel brgs ?
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old Apr 24th, 2017, 3:53 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StraDuc View Post
Of all the "stuff" I've done to my '06 S1K nothing came close to the quantum leap in handling improvement that I experienced when I swapping out the stock spoke wheels for alloy's. It felt like an entirely new bike and I wasn't even terribly unhappy with the stock set up since I had never ridden a bike newer than my 1974 Norton Commando. Going from that dinosaur (in it's defense, it's a pretty good handling dinosaur) to the S1K was a revelation in braking, engine performance and handling. I changed the wheels only because I wanted the ability to plug a flat on the back roads in North Carolina where I was heading and where help (no cell service) might not be available. I was shocked at the vast improvement in the bikes handling which I already thought was pretty good. I have since installed Andreani cartridges and although they did make an improvement, it wasn't nearly as dramatic as the wheel swap. I can't imagine how awesome it would make a heavy steel wheeled GT feel to go to Carbon wheels that weigh nothing. Bottom line is there is no single mod you can do that will make your bikes handling feel dramatically better than going to lighter wheels. In my experience, that should be your first priority.

Enjoy your new ride.
Something to be said also if you go "too" light on the wheels with no other improvements elsewhere. Guarantee if you put carbon BST wheels but leave the stock forks/shocks and don't put a damper that the front end will feel too light and you don't want that.

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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old Apr 24th, 2017, 6:23 pm
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I added BST wheels to my first Sport1000 when it had stock suspension and a steering damper. The light wheels got rid of the head shake and allowed me to remove the steering damper. I eventually added Ohlins front forks and an Ohlins rear shock but the wheels made the biggest difference overall.

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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old Apr 25th, 2017, 11:21 am Thread Starter
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UPDATE:

JC from JCPAKBIKES.COM gave me a call when I inquired about wheels to see if that would help the issues with the bike. He was very helpful in suggesting fixes to try before spending money. Started working on the suspension and true enough, it took care of the majority of the head wobble when riding. I'd like to thank JC for taking the time to educate me on the self suspension work. I will gladly recommend someone who helps his fellow riders. And thank you all for the added suggestions as well.

jeff
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old Apr 27th, 2017, 6:36 pm
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I took my stock SC and added a steering damper, forged 999R wheels, 999R calipers, S4RS ohlins forks, a new Ohlins rear shock, sprung for my weight, set sag, rebound, compression. I tracked the bike and it handled pretty well. I then decided to sell it and in one afternoon converted it all back to stock and then rode it again and I was like W T F? it still looked cool, but the difference was huge, it was like riding a whale that couldn't stop. I didnt get it back to the track in stock form, so in the 2-3x i rode it before selling it (on the streets) the #1 thing that I really noticed to be honest was how shitty the stock brakes were in comparison.

If you are fine with getting rid of the spoked stock wheels, and stock forks, then the used 999S (cast) or 999R (forged) wheels are a cheap way to get light wheels that are almost plug and play (rear requires a simple spacer kit). it does mean moving to either M1000S forks or S4RS forks (used) and radial brakes (999R), but once again all this stuff u can find used at motorcycle wreckers.
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Last edited by Agro; Apr 27th, 2017 at 6:45 pm.
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