Author Topic: steering damper  (Read 444 times)

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Online Hossamania

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Re: steering damper
« Reply #25 on: January 11, 2018, 07:31:52 PM »
Trikes steer differently than bikes simply because they do not lean. The longer the trail the more stable the bike/trike is and the more the bike wants to keep going the direction that it is going. The shorter the trail the easier it is to turn and the less stable the bike is at speed.
On a bike you can overcome the long tail simply because you can lean the bike and force it to follow into the curve. On a trike you cant do this so on a trike that has a lot of trail it is very hard to make it turn, so trike builders will shorten the trail and add a steering damper on them to make them more stable. You can do the same thing with the steering head bearings by tightening them up and adding a dampening affect, as a mater of fact a lot of the old side car bikes had a big knob on the steering head to tighten/loosen up the head depending on the circumstances.
makes perfect sense

My friend's 1947 Indian has an adjustment knob on the steering head, probably because those bikes were set up to be used with or without a sidecar.
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Offline david lee

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Re: steering damper
« Reply #26 on: January 11, 2018, 10:26:04 PM »
Trikes steer differently than bikes simply because they do not lean. The longer the trail the more stable the bike/trike is and the more the bike wants to keep going the direction that it is going. The shorter the trail the easier it is to turn and the less stable the bike is at speed.
On a bike you can overcome the long tail simply because you can lean the bike and force it to follow into the curve. On a trike you cant do this so on a trike that has a lot of trail it is very hard to make it turn, so trike builders will shorten the trail and add a steering damper on them to make them more stable. You can do the same thing with the steering head bearings by tightening them up and adding a dampening affect, as a mater of fact a lot of the old side car bikes had a big knob on the steering head to tighten/loosen up the head depending on the circumstances.
makes perfect sense
sidecars pull the bike sideways

My friend's 1947 Indian has an adjustment knob on the steering head, probably because those bikes were set up to be used with or without a sidecar.

Offline JW113

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Re: steering damper
« Reply #27 on: January 12, 2018, 09:19:15 AM »
Steering dampers were an option on the Indian, I've seen a few bikes with them. I agree, I think this is more of a sidecar option.

Not that I know first hand, but know a guy who builds and installs sidecars says if the rig is set up correct, it will not pull to the side. With a sidecar mounted, the bike is tilted outward (away from sidecar) to compensate so you have a neutral steering, no pull to either side. He is also a big advocate to mount car tires on all three wheels for a sidecar set up.

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

Offline Julio

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Re: steering damper
« Reply #28 on: January 12, 2018, 05:27:43 PM »
Steering dampers were an option on the Indian, I've seen a few bikes with them. I agree, I think this is more of a sidecar option.

Not that I know first hand, but know a guy who builds and installs sidecars says if the rig is set up correct, it will not pull to the side. With a sidecar mounted, the bike is tilted outward (away from sidecar) to compensate so you have a neutral steering, no pull to either side. He is also a big advocate to mount car tires on all three wheels for a sidecar set up.

-JW

Even a well adjusted rig with the proper lean out, toe-in, wheel lead and level frame will need a dampner. I can run 90 mph on mine with no drift or head shake, but cross a set of railroad tracks at 20 mph, and the front end would go crazy. A VW dampner calmed everything down and is pretty standard equipment on all rigs.
As far as going dark side, tugging a tub is pretty hard on the rear tire. I never got more than 4k miles out of mine. I spun up an adapter for a 15x4 car wheel and now get a ton of miles out of the rear.