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So, I recently installed the Conti Road Attack 3 GT's back on my 2015 and then my wife and I took off on our bikes (she's on an ST1100) for our anniversary. I noticed a headshake at 35-45mph with a new vibration at highway speeds. My immediate thought was steering stem bearings as I had serviced them back at 25K miles and I'm now at 42K miles. But the prior tire (Bridgestone T31 GT's) had zero headshake at all...so this had me thinking. I had a chat with @RaYzerman and he agreed that the tire may be suspect.

Long story longer: I ordered a replacement front tire from Continental. This would be the 2nd time I've run Conti's on this bike and they have been the best gripping and longest lasting tire I've run out of all of them so far (see here). Here's the catch: I was in the middle of a cross country move last year when I purchased the new tires preemptively and the front tire was tightly wrapped in shrink wrap when I received a year ago. When I say tightly, think: to the point of working as a drum. I've never seen a tire wrapped so well. The problem came that we moved and the tire sat in my garage for a year tightly wrapped and I think that contributed to the problem. As I understand it, the Conti's come with steel belts (instead of composite belts) and I wonder if the belts got warped sitting in a compressed state?

At any rate, I order the new tire and installed it today. The result: the bike rides like it should! No headshake at all so I didn't have to do anything to the head bearings.

Just thought I'd share as another data point for everyone. Unwrap those tires when they arrive!
 

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Since we are talking about this…I’ll mention that I too love the Conti line of tires for their “bang for the buck” value. You can also run them pretty bald and they still grip. That being said, the one thing i discovered with them…especially the Motions…. Right around the speed you are talking about they have a headshake when you take your hands off the bars. This happens on both my VFR and my FJR. Took me a long time to figure out it was the tires. Then i realized it does it on both bikes. Stability is still great…but hands off the bars at about 40 they will shake a little.
 

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Probably going to disagree with you that bearings can't cause headshake. Pretty sure mine are 100% of my issue, seeing that everything else is done.
It's ok, I've always disagreed with him about this based on my experiences with 2 different generation FJRs.
 

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It would be helpful to explain when the head shake occurs. On my bike it is always below 50mph and with both hands off the handlebar or holding it lightly with one hand.
 

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Sorta topic related: I had the same type of head shake on my 2000 Kawasaki Concours with various tires. The only thing that cured it was tapered steering head bearings.
 

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Conti shake, it's real! I run Contis on my ADV bike and they work great on road. I think they're Trail Attack 90/10 ADV tires. Their sport touring line of tires not so much. They've always been known to have a head shake issue. In fact I rode a '14 FJR at the shop last week and it had Contis, it had the shake and the steering head bearings were fine.
 

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My experience that whenever I’ve experienced headshake (14 Fjr, (2) 76 g-wings, 81 & 80 CBx’s, 84 Nidhthawk 650, 86Sei g-wing & several others) and all of them got better with new tires for a short time (not fixed !) the ONLY thing that fixed all of these was new tapered head bearings. If it comes back,it’s not fixed, plain and simple ! Never taking your hands off the bars is a ridiculous idea, lawyers would have a field day with something that was built with that kind of instability.

Do you think a new Corvette owner would be ok with a steering wheel shaking violently at 65mph when he took his hand off the wheel to shift ? Hell no ! Ain’t gonna happen, ever !
 

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Do you think a new Corvette owner would be ok with a steering wheel shaking violently at 65mph when he took his hand off the wheel to shift ?
Sadly, there's no shifter in the new Corvette, but I get what you're saying.
 

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Conti shake, it's real! I run Contis on my ADV bike and they work great on road. I think they're Trail Attack 90/10 ADV tires. Their sport touring line of tires not so much. They've always been known to have a head shake issue. In fact I rode a '14 FJR at the shop last week and it had Contis, it had the shake and the steering head bearings were fine.
Never had that issue - I've been running Conti Road Attacks on my FZ1 for the last 3-4 years, no shaking issues even when the fronts got cupped. However I can't say that I have experienced headshake on any bike, and they all have stock type head bearings. Curious if anyone who has had the issue has replaced the stock bearings with another stock type set and had their problem go away, or checked the stock set for radial play after replacement.
 

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They don’t shake violently…lol. Just a teeny side to side. And if you’re going fast (Highway speed) they don’t shake at all. Also don’t shake at all when your hands are resting on the bars. Sorta strange but maybe it has something to do with the tire profile Conti uses, or the compound.
 

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I've been reading a lot on suspension and front stuff lately, it's looking more and more, like it's a bit of art to test, figure out and put it all back together. I'm starting to think that the preload, when done, has to be measured each side and adjusted and that way, rather than matching the nuts on top. I matched the nuts, one fork was 1m higher than other, doesn't sound like a lot, but I'll bet it makes a difference. Tightening seems to be methodical art too. Something changes on front end, then it seems, loosen bounce and tighten.
 

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I’ve got around 185,000 miles on this platform. Never had a problem with original bearings. But I have had headshake.

Heck- I’ve got a 2022 with around 2,700 miles on it. It just started wagging so bad that it’d turn into a tank slapper if I didn’t keep my hands on the bars.

It’s the stock tires, in this case. They’re just naturally shitty.

I’ve never had headshake that wasn’t easily fixed by retorquing or by replacing an oddly wearing tire. It is not inherent to this platform.

I think bearings can go bad, some do go bad, if they are improperly torqued, but it’s rare.
 

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I don't think the FJR has an inherent head shake. I think it is a symptom of something needing to be adjusted or replaced. It is a maintenance issue. It happens to a lot of bikes across many brands. In fact the FJR is a very stable platform.
 

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I'd say stable, but. So far, bearing wise, 20-25k there have been quite a few cases where bearings are shot for this bike. Mostly front, peruse this forum.

As for torque of nuts and bolts. I can tell ya from personal experience, I over torqued the front axle because I was lazy and didn't look up torque specs nor grab proper ratchet to set torque, bounced front, tightened everything, drove, noticed a serious issue with front right away, limbed back, redid with torque ratchet, loosened whole front, bounced and properly torqued. Night and day. I've been amazed how much the stupid fine tuning of stuff affects steering. Wish it was simpler.

I'd say test. If you notice a difference doing properly, if it's better, perhaps, do it properly.✌
 
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