Welcome to Netrider ... Connecting Riders!

Interested in talking motorbikes with a terrific community of riders?
Signup (it's quick and free) to join the discussions and access the full suite of tools and information that Netrider has to offer.

feathery front end

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by flexorcist, Jul 23, 2006.

  1. i was riding the other day (on a zzr250), down the highway home... There was extremely heavy easterly wind on me, (so much so that I had to pretty much hang off the left hand side of my bike for an hour jsut to stay in my lane). It was sitting happily on 110, then I had to pass a truck just before a right hand bend. The wind was pretty much blocked by the truck, but the bike was pullin toward the truck a little more than was comfy. So I gave it a bit more throttle, (120-130kms/h), as I did this the front end got really really uncomfortably feathery on me, and I was glad as hell to be past him albeit back into the wind and hangin off the bike again... Normally I would have applied a touch of rear brake through a bend if I felt it get feathery... Aside from the obvious (don't try and overtake people on freeways on a 250), is there anything I can do to stop the front being so feathery at speed??

  2. Not sure what you mean by 'feathery'...

    was the front wheel getting light over bumps and wiggling the bars? I wouldnt think a ZZR would have the power to get the front end light... Maybe you just hit a odd cambered bump and it gave you bike the wiggles...

    Nothing wrong with the bars wiggling, it's just your bikes way of handling a problem that your tyre/suspension cant.

    Anyway, what is 'feathery' ?
  3. get a heavier bike? :p

    more detail required i think
  4. Sounds to me like the front unloaded and became very light. Is that what you mean by 'feathery'?

    If it's become light and does this without any wind at high speed, could be a number of things.

    Do the usual. Check the tyres for wear and pressure. Look at the rear suspension. Is the preload set correctly (alters the attitude of the bike). What was your body position? Bolt upright or slightly crouched? So many things to look at, but light and feathery might be normal for your bike at that speed. Only if you felt really unstable would I be worried. But check the above before you do anything else.
  5. Is this a brand new bike, and if so has the bike been dropped?

    Sounds like you might have a bent frame... but then again, i'm no expert.
  6. sound more like you lifted the front a little, not enough to pick the front wheel up but enough to take most of the load off the front forks (hence why it feels light and feathery) prolly a combination of powering on and a heavy wind that did it
  7. I don't think more detail is needed, get a bigger bike.

    A lot of wind in that situation can give the impression the bike wants to slip all over the place, big bikes can still be thrown around in that though a lot less.

    Possibly the front tyre has some poor wear characteristics, quick look.

    If your steering bearings are bodgy, that could amplify the wind effecting handleing, put bike on centre stand and make sure the handle bars movement from left to right is smooth and even.

    particular attention on bearings when steering is faceing straight, there should be no excessive drag on the bars at any point. As you move the bars past straight, it's there you usualy feel like a tight spot.

    Good luck, careful in high wind on small bike. I think thats all it is.
  8. yeah i'd say it was just wind, was kinda unnerving though!!!
    it's still like that a bit, but only on open highways etc etc, it does it less on freeways, and never on regular roads... probably doesnt help i only weight 70kg