Bike seems to lock in straight path
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  1. #1
    Senior Member Snake2715's Avatar
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    3rd tw I have ridden. we sold the 06 w less than 1000 miles on it for more than we bought it for. I grabbed an xr400... however missed the tw. came across an excellent deal on a 1994, grabbed it this past Tuesday.



    changed oil, plug, cleaned tank, added filter, lubed, etc. took it out this weekend for some trail riding. its the wifes bike but she is still new so she got put on a quad, I moved to the tw and gave my buddy, who loaned the quad, my 400.



    I noticed this bike is straight down the road but is almost locked into a straight position, if I move it left or right its very twitchy. Hard to explain, but its not easy to turn just a little.



    We did switch out bikes and my friend also commented on it likes to go straight. my 06 was just sold about 4 weeks ago, so its not like I am imagining a difference. could this be steering bearings or maybe the tire that's causing this?

  2. #2
    Senior Member assquatch20's Avatar
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    I'd throw the bike on a stand and check rear wheel alignment first. Does the chain look like it's running at an angle from the rear sprocket to the front? Put a straight edge ruler or a level (from a stationary point, like a few links back on the sprocket) beside it if you can't be sure. Next I'd go after wheel balancing. Throw it on a stand and make sure that's right. If neither, then go after steering bearings.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Snake2715's Avatar
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    WWould not have thought of those, will do and report back.

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  5. #4
    Senior Member peruano's Avatar
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    If this was a bicycle question and not a tw 200, I'd say you have a bad bearing in the head set. I believe the tw has the same system and it is possible that a head set that was loose for some time and primarily driven straight ahead, managed to pit the races such that the ball bearings are seated in significant depressions to resist being turned out of those comfy situations. Probably a matter of bearings being replaced in the head set. Just guessing as an old bicycle mechanic. It will be easily diagnosed if you lift the front wheel off the ground and feel for chatter or less than smooth turning from and across true dead center. Tom
    Tom - TW200 2002, Kawasaki VN 500 2006

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  6. #5
    Banned qwerty's Avatar
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    I'll concur on the stem bearings theory. The OEM seal isn't much and a single drop of water and a couple weeks sitting will allow enough corrosion to notch the system. AllBalls is the cure.




  7. #6
    Senior Member GlassAnkles's Avatar
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    Steering stem bearings for certain, my 87 was the same way. Get some All Balls or Moose Racing (identical stuff) bearings. Put the races in the freezer overnight and they will be easier to install
    11 ninja 1000

  8. #7
    Senior Member srs713's Avatar
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    Yeah... while reading the original post my first thought was...



    "someone over tightened the head bearings then backed them off"
    Stephen S.

    '07 TW200:

    15/50 sprockets, O-ring chain, D2Moto foot pegs

    tweaked carb (127.5 jet, 0.019 needle shim, idle screw @2.25),

    Rubbermaid "Action Packer" on homemade brackets

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