SV1000S steering - SV1000 Portal
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 1st January 2020, 04:18 PM Thread Starter
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Ok, as several of you know I just got a 2003 SVS yesterday. The bike runs fine but of course needs several refreshes. Suspension being one of them. Thankfully it's in rideable condition as it sits. However, there are a few things that I need to address earlier rather than later.

#1 and the topic of this thread is steering. Not necessarily handling, but steering. Let me preface my question with context, this is the first sportbike I have owned.
Previously I had a Triumph Sprint, a 1200gs, and I now also have a 2018 Thruxton (and a multitude of dirt bikes). The steering is different for each of course.

During my SVS test ride, I noticed that taking the steering off center at speed corners was quite heavy. This MAY be due to the steering stabilizer but I really don't know. However, at one point I needed to make a very sharp turn at a low speed (10 or 15 mph) and had to "push past" the heavy steering to navigate the turn. When I did this, it felt like the bike suddenly overcame the "near center" resistance and then QUICKLY transitioned to a deep lean, almost throwing me off. I was a bit surprised. All other bikes I've owned had a smooth transition from center to deep lean without any abruptness or resistance.

I am curious what I am dealing with here, Is it normal for the bike? Is it the nature of close set clip ons? Is it the steering stabilizer? All of the above? Or something more nefarious?

Thanks to all in advance and Happy New Year!
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 1st January 2020, 07:02 PM
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If it has a stock steering damper, then that's not likely the source of your problem.
I'd be looking at the steering head bearings & proper torque first for that condition. Previous owner might have been into wheelies since the engine torque make them easy, and hard landings are known to dent bearing races.

When everything is right, your inputs should be subtle and smooth.
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 1st January 2020, 08:21 PM
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What was the air pressure in your front tire and how worn was that front tire?


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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 1st January 2020, 09:42 PM
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All of the above.
Get the steering head bearings checked....probably overtightened as well as beaten half to death. Every possibility that they are still OEM....so swap them out for tapered units...
The stock damper on my bike developed a tiny leak, which went unnoticed for a while, until i felt a weird "pulling" on the steering, like it was trying to straighten the bars ......
I discovered when i pulled the damper off, if i pulled the rod out, it sprung back a bit....and the best i can figure is that there was an air bubble in the damper and it was "stretching" and trying to pull back again....
It wasn't a lot, but i could feel it for sure when riding. There is a little grub screw in the damper, and with a syringe i was able to drop oil (5w fork oil) into the hole and work the rod back and forward gently until it worked very smoothly. Wacked it back on the bike, and it felt great again, for a couple of weeks.... Gave up in the end and put a Hyperpro damper on top of the triple.....

Check also your fork protrusion, std is 8.3mm to the top of the fork with the cap installed and standard preload is 6 rings.... std rebound and comp are 1 turn out from stiffest....

Rear shock is 3/4 out on rebound (down the bottom) and 2-1/4 out for the compression (at the top of shock)

Std spring preload length is 199.5mm

Its good to set every to std as a starting point, and then only chnage 1 thing at a time, and get used to what that feels like before moving onto the next.....

One owner..... 310,000kms and counting...

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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 1st January 2020, 09:58 PM Thread Starter
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Pressure is a bit low, 25psi. I will increase and try again.. but.... I think one of the real issues is how hard it is to move the stabilizer. I have it up on a stand now (head lift stand) and the stabilizer is soooo tight. Is there any adjustment? I dont see it if there is.


Update, I put more air in, fixed! Sometimes it's the most simple things..
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 1st January 2020, 10:00 PM Thread Starter
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Missing Links post is gold. More to do...
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 2nd January 2020, 02:43 AM
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Not sure how much air you wacked in, but 34-36 is gonna be the range.....

Unbolt the damper at the rod end and try again...... that will tell you if it is that.....

One owner..... 310,000kms and counting...

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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 2nd January 2020, 04:40 PM
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Previous owner may have drained steering damper, and refilled with too heavy of oil.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 2nd January 2020, 11:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twag4 View Post
Previous owner may have drained steering damper, and refilled with too heavy of oil.
Good point....possible....

One owner..... 310,000kms and counting...

2003 Copper SV1000S
Repainted Ford PE (Petroleum Mica)
Yoshi 2:1 collectors and Arrow titanium can...
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