Author Topic: Something strange with my softail  (Read 460 times)

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Offline misfitJason

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Something strange with my softail
« on: January 12, 2018, 04:42:23 PM »
Itís basically an evo softail with the stock Fatboy wheel and oem size spacers.  The only thing different than stock on the rear end is the performance machine rear brake caliper.


The bike has been pulling to the right annoyingly for a while now. Iíve checked the rear wheel alignment and itís as straight as can be.  I double checked that the shocks were evenly set for preload.  I triple checked hat I have the right brake caliper. I do have an older tire on the rear

I started to notice that my tire is wearing weird, meaning more of an angle on the primary side and not rounded.  It is pretty hard and I need a new tire anyway. This brought me to really eyeballing the rear wheel.  To me it looks like the wheel is in the swing arm at an angle. Like the picture I have attached. The picture is not my bike but an exaggeration of what I am talking about.  If it is at an angle would that most likely be because I bent a swing arm, or is something else usually the cause
2006 Dyna, Kraftech Evo Softail

Offline choseneasy

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Re: Something strange with my softail
« Reply #1 on: January 12, 2018, 04:49:07 PM »
I would take the wheel and shocks off to check the swingarm function and movement.

Offline misfitJason

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Re: Something strange with my softail
« Reply #2 on: January 12, 2018, 05:01:22 PM »
Here are some pics of my bike







2006 Dyna, Kraftech Evo Softail

Offline JW113

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Re: Something strange with my softail
« Reply #3 on: January 12, 2018, 05:40:21 PM »
Jason,

Get one of those electronic levels at Lowes or whatever. They're cheap and work pretty good. Take the seat off, and using some wood blocks and wooden wedges (for leveling door frames, etc), get the bike positioned upright but on still on it's own weight. Set the level between the two rear frame tubes, above the battery. Using the wedges, watch the level and get the frame perfectly level to the ground.

Now, take the electronic level and hold it against the brake disk. This will tell you if the wheel is vertical compared to the frame, and how many degrees off (if any).

If it is not pretty darn close to 0 degrees, has to be at worst a bent swing arm. At best, maybe the spherical bearings at the swing arm pivot?

Let us know what you find.

-JW
2004 FLHRS   1977 FLH Shovelhead  1992 FLSTC
1945 Indian Chief   1978 XL Bobber

Offline choseneasy

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Re: Something strange with my softail
« Reply #4 on: January 12, 2018, 06:24:51 PM »
Also-Check the distance from centre of rear axle to centre of swingarm shaft. It should be equal both sides--- that looks off to me.
 

Offline Breeze

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Re: Something strange with my softail
« Reply #5 on: January 13, 2018, 04:29:45 AM »
I think you have the short & long spacers reversed. Most HD tires are "slightly" off center of the fender, yours is a lot off center.
I think I'll just stay home today, it looks too peoplely out there.

Offline hotrodshovel

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Re: Something strange with my softail
« Reply #6 on: January 13, 2018, 04:47:00 AM »
unless your photo is distorted it looks like your swing arm is bent.  If it were me I would disassemble the entire rear end and inspect every component closely for warpage, etc.  Swing arm, bearings, axle, shocks, wheel itself. 
Good luck.
John

Offline hbkeith

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Re: Something strange with my softail
« Reply #7 on: January 13, 2018, 05:11:07 AM »
I would do like JW113 said before taking anything apart , while frame is level check swingarm for level

Offline hd06

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Re: Something strange with my softail
« Reply #8 on: January 13, 2018, 05:23:02 AM »
 Tire looks bad, I would replace it and take it for a ride. I don't know the history of the bike did this problem just start, new bike to you, why would the swingarm be bent. What dose the front tire look like.   Good luck

Offline Princess Butt

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Re: Something strange with my softail
« Reply #9 on: January 13, 2018, 12:10:06 PM »
Also check where the drivetrain bolts to the frame for missing hardware. Everything might look okay when the bike is static, but when it starts moving thereís all kinds of torque loads applied to it.

I had a problem similar to this on my road king, it was a loose motor mount. Since the Softail is not rubber mounted to the frame, we usually donít see this problem, but itís woth a check for missing or loose hardware.
Shiny side up, rubber side down.

Offline Dan89flstc

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Re: Something strange with my softail
« Reply #10 on: January 13, 2018, 12:51:50 PM »
You can`t judge if the wheel is straight by using the fender as a reference, because they always seem to be a little out of whack.

And in the picture, it looks like your rear fender is tilted to the side, but it could be just how the pic distorts it.

I notice sometimes that my eyeglasses will make something look out of true, take the glasses off, it will be straight, but blurry...

Offline misfitJason

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Re: Something strange with my softail
« Reply #11 on: January 14, 2018, 04:51:50 AM »
Did some work to it yesterday.  I checked the alignment of the wheel as far as the paralel if the axel.  We are good there.  I then checked the plumb of the wheel in the swingarm.  We are good there.  I think the issue is going to be the tire.  I have some old tires do some weird things before and I think this one has reached it's limit.  I'll replace this one soon adn see if the problem still exists
2006 Dyna, Kraftech Evo Softail

Offline N-gin

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Re: Something strange with my softail
« Reply #12 on: January 14, 2018, 06:09:39 AM »
Motor mounts?
I'm not here cause of a path before me, Im here cause of the burnout left behind

Offline hotrodshovel

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Re: Something strange with my softail
« Reply #13 on: January 14, 2018, 06:25:41 AM »
Jason, Jw113 & hbkeith are 100% correct in that you gotta see whats going on when the bike is at rest, first.. however its happened to me with my Shovelhead where things look great when the bike is resting but under a load if there is a bad bearing be it in the wheel or swing arm maybe even loose transmission bolts, thing move.  Its really hard to tell just by looking when the bike is at rest.  Torque is powerful and it will shift things if they are worn or not torqued properly.   I've had cupped rear tires on my Shovel and it has always come down, in my case, to something moving that was not supposed to causing misalignment or bad shocks. To dissemble the rear on my Shovel is pretty easy, I don't know whats involved with your bike but can't be too far off.

 I don't know if I ever had a bad tire, one that cupped anyhow.  I've had bad tires that have seperated tread from the belt but not something subtle like uneven wear.  As recently as two years ago on Memorial Day going to DC with a 1 year old bike the tire started disentegrating on 95 doing 80mph.  Good thing I was not in the back of the pack.  Guys got my attention and had to get a tow to local HD for a new tire.  I was throwing chunks of rubber at them. Did not feel it!!!

Again this is just my own experience and I hope in some way it helps you get your bike sorted out.   Good luck Jason
John

Offline N-gin

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Re: Something strange with my softail
« Reply #14 on: January 14, 2018, 09:02:12 PM »
 :bf: I was thinking Dyna

Is the alignment good? Axle to mounting point of swingarm.
I'm not here cause of a path before me, Im here cause of the burnout left behind