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Newbie: Jerky unsteady ride.

Discussion in 'Technical and Troubleshooting Torque' started by jk1980, Apr 9, 2010.

  1. Hi, I'm new to the forum, and newish to riding after an extended abscence.

    I have a 2002 Suzuki GS500E with 45K on the clock for commuting to work.

    Recently the bike feels jerky and unstead, especially at low RPM (3,000-5,000). Its quite subtle, so much so that im not 100% convinced there is a problem. But things just dont "feel" right.

    It feels like the a) engine is missing, but the rpm needle doesnt dip, and it idles nice and is not so apparent during acceleration. I just get a feeling of constant dipping on the front shock. It also feels like im cornering wider now, and its unstead on the lean. It seems to be ok at high speeds on the motorways.

    Funnily enough, it seems to have occured after I took the girlfriend for a ride around the block. Its the first time ive taken pillion on this bike. She isnt a behemoth either, quite the opposite (50kg) but I do recall a pretty significant slump when she got on. More so than I expected. But I havent riden for AGES to compare.

    The front suspecsion seems to be in good order, but im not certain how to check the rear. The chain has good tension/slack (1-1.5 inches or so and is lubed. I changed the spark plugs to be sure. Tires are good. Steering seems fine.

    Any suggestions? Should I just accelerate more? :)
  2. Oh, and another techincal question while im at it. When in neutral, the bike wont start unless I touch the clutch. Is there anything I can check easily on this?
  3. That's normal, I think. By touch the clutch you mean pull it in completely? Some bikes will only start with the clutch completely in.

    You need to practice steady throttle control. The more you ride the better you will get at it, & also it sounds like your suspension preload needs to be properly setup for your weight. Do a search on here for "suspension setup", it's been covered before.

  4. Hi, thanks for the advice. Ill look at the suspension setup.

    I just have to touch the clutch lightly for the bike to start. I used to start without clutch. So I suspect something is out.

    As far as throttle control, I dont beleive that is the issue. It happens far to rapid and frequent. The dipping\missing occurs about every 1 or 2 seconds. Its been fine for the last 6 months anyway. I dont see my throttle control suddenly getting worse over night, and staying consitenly bad for weeks.

    I know I may not be the best rider but I got past the nub throttle issues a while back.

  5. Ok, I thought it would be that because you said you were back after not riding for a bit, I know my riding skills deteriorate if I don't ride.

    & your thread title said newbie!

    In that case it could be either bad fuel, dirty air filter, fouled plugs, dirty carbs or something similar like like that. Also your carbs might be out of sync which could also have an effect.

    Is it only when the bike is cold, or all the time?

    Not sure about your clutch problem, that's a bit of a strange one...

    If you're not confident doing the work your self, my advice would be to take it to mechanic to check over.
  6. Fair call, I certainly did have the throttle jitters when I jumped back on for the first month or so. But got it sorted now thankfully ha ha.

    Ill give the things you mention a crack. Im hoping its something simple like fuel. It literally happened over night. I cant remember if I fueled up before though.

    Could a stuffed rear suspension show these symptoms? It might be misleading that it happened after I took a pillion.

    Maybe I should just buy a bigger bike ha ha.

    THanks for the advice. Ill let you know how I go. Might try airfilter this weekend. Carb Sync requires specific tools doesnt it? Is it a difficult job? I like tinkering with stuff, so am not opposed to moderately difficult meachanical stuff.
  7. Carby sync is not difficult per se, just time consuming. Google will turn up some cheap workarounds rather than buying expensive tools ;)

    Get your preload set up properly first, then evaluate again. It could be stuffed, or just not setup right.
  8. When it happens can you feel/hear a reaction from the motor?

    Can you replicate it at partial throttle in neutral, or on a stand and in gear?

    You need to isolate the problem a bit further, and then you'll know if you're looking at suspension or motor.

    If it's not something from MVs list above, check throttle cables for slack. If the motor doesn't seem to be the problem, check wheel bearings, steering head bearings, bounce the front and rear and feel for any notchiness.

    Even 50kg will make a big difference to the way the bike feels, but certainly shouldn't do any lasting damage unless something was about to go anyway.