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Discussion Starter #1
Hi folks , my bike got serviced and steering bearings cleaned and lubed . Bike ran good for two days but now I feel a clicking sensation while rebound from the front shock absorber . What do you think must have come loose ? Thanks .Happy new year
 

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The steering head bearings are a pain in the ***. You can open them up, lube them, and have a certified master mechanic torque them. You ride away and hit the brakes a few times, and they will loosen up. Not much, but the clicking thing can happen. No big deal, but do get them to fix it as soon as possible.



This guy does a decent job of tightening them.
 

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I'm pretty sure I felt mine do it yesterday and today when I hit the brakes.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Friends I took the bike to Kawasaki and there was a junior technician ; under the fork nut there are two stem nuts ( round with teeth where you can tighten using screw driver /hammer ) . However you are supposed to use a stem nut wrench to loosen that ( after loosening the top stem nut that allows you to turn with a torque wrench ). The two I’m talking about is a set of toothed nuts which you have to see from underside . The top one holds the bottom nut which actually gives the tightness to the steering . A detailed Metis is given under 14-8 in the service manual , but I still don’t understand how to apply 30 nm of torque using the special stem nut wrench
 

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Dr Sure....exactly......you found the issue. You cant get the tool in place when the top triple clamp is in place. If you take that off and torque under it, it accomplishes nothing because not all the parts are there. Once the top nut gets tightened, it makes the lower nuts tighter than they were.



Thats why the guy in the video does what he does at about the 5:30 area. You use a screwdriver, tighten the toothed nuts just a little, then tighten the top nut until that clicking is BARELY eliminated....not tight, just eliminated.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Rcannon what do you understand by this in the Kawasaki manual ? :Settle the bearings in place as follows.
○Tighten the steering stem nut with 65 N·m (6.6 kgf·m, 48
ft·lb) of torque first, and loosen it a fraction of a turn until it turns lightly. Afterward tighten it again with specified torque using a steering stem nut wrench [A].
Special Tool - Steering Stem Nut Wrench: 57001-1100 Torque - Steering Stem Nut: 30 N·m (3.1 kgf·m, 22 ft·lb)
•Install the claw washer [A] so that its bent claws faces upward, and engage the bent claws with the grooves of
•steering stem locknut [C].
Hand tighten the steering stem locknut until it contacts
•against the claw washer.
Check if the straight claws [D] of the claw washer aligned with the grooves of the steering stem nut [E].
In case of the claws positioned between the grooves:
•Tighten the steering stem locknut [A] until the straight claws aligned with 3rd grooves of the steering stem nut [C].
○Count the number of groove from the first aligned groove •[D] as shown.
Bend the two straight claws downward into the groove of the steering stem nut.
 

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A person can make this complicated, but theres no reason to do so. The manual does a great job of explaining, but gives a poor end result. I would not worry about what the manual says.

Loosen the large, center bolt. Loosen the bolts that hold the triple clamp to the fork leg. You want the triple clamp to move up and down, slightly, and not bind it.

Tighten those toothed nuts 1/4 turn, then tighten triple clamp center bolt. Test. Repeat until there is no more click. Dont go too far, just eliminate the play with the minimum amount of drag.

When you finally have this correct, then tighten the fork leg bolts.
 

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I had the same symptom with my 2013. I put a torque wrench on the steering stem nut (top center) and it turned about a half turn before the wrench clicked off. That solved mine. Maybe try that first, then what Rcannon suggested.
 

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Johnny, thats it, and its why it really needs to be done by feel as opposed to the torque settings. You saw that when that upper nut gets tighter, it influences how tight the lower nuts are, and ultimately, how much force is put against the bearings.


The "problem" with doing it the way you did is now that upper triple clamp can be in a bind. Its best to do what you did, then loosen the upper bolts that hold the fork tubes. Those will find their new, slightly lower spot and all is well. I dont see any harm from doing it the way you did, but its probably better to have that triple clamp is a natural position.
 

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The "problem" with doing it the way you did is now that upper triple clamp can be in a bind. Its best to do what you did, then loosen the upper bolts that hold the fork tubes. Those will find their new, slightly lower spot and all is well. I dont see any harm from doing it the way you did, but its probably better to have that triple clamp is a natural position.
Yes....I see what you are saying now that I think about it. Makes sense.
 

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Johnny, thats the way it was done, but its not like you are bending that clamp 3 inches. I dont see it ever causing a problem and its a way better option that running around with loose bearings.
 

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IMO, you need to treat tapered rollers slightly differently than ball bearings. Tapered rollers can handle a bigger range of torque with no ill affect on feel or damage to the races. Ball bearing races are a bit more sensitive and probably shouldn't be adjusted with a drift or screwdriver due to the increased risk of over torquing and damaging the races. It's a PITA but every few years the steering head should be disassembled, cleaned, lubed and reassembled using the factory torque as a guideline and adjust mostly by feel. However, if they are new bearings / races, I like to bring them up to the factory torque setting once after assembly but them back them off and retorque again by feel.

I cleaned mine a couple years ago now and things were pretty gritty in there.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks for all the discussions and help ;the mistake that the junior technician did at kawasaki ( dealer ) was under tightened the toothed bolt( after lining my bearings and probably to impress me how easy the steering is ) hence after two days of riding the clunking feel appeared . I just followed what was mentioned here and tightened by 1/4 turn and finally torqued the stem bolt to 110 nm . Feels good and feels right . I also happened to ride a bike fresh from the showroom and the steering actually feels harder than mine but I’m not going to monkey around anymore ; I’m feeling fine with my bike . I thank this friendly and helpful forum once again . I just plan a few mods this month like led illumination , I’ve already got the urban brawlers and I would be fitting them along with booster plug ( I’m not too sure how successful that is going to be but living in india I have no access to Ivan as it s 2018 model and 2 wheel dyno works has mixed response )
 

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Its not really his fault. He had everything apart and I'll bet he put a layer of grease on the bearings. At that point, you really need to put things together, ride around, and re-check the adjustment. If you dont have to tighten it, this second time, odds are the bearings are too tight, and thats not good, either.


He should have went for that test ride, applied the frotnt brakes a few times, then re-tighten.
 
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