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My new bicycle pulls to left and right

Old 04-23-23, 08:50 PM
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My new bicycle pulls to left and right

Hello,

I'm a complete newbie, with only one other gravel bike as a frame of reference, so I don't even know how to accurately describe what I'm experiencing with my new gravel bike (Moots Routt RSL) that I received couple days ago.

While riding, when the handle bar is in center position, the bike is very stable and it just glides; however, if I turn handlebar to the left or right just a few degrees, I feel a slight pull in that direction. The pull isn't strong enough for me to lose control, but it is strong enough for it to be noticeable. Since I don't experience this with my older gravel bike, I'm trying to understand if this is normal? If I pick up the bike and turn the handlebar in either direction, it feels very smooth with no resistance whatsoever. So I'm guessing it's got something to do with the geometry?
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Old 04-23-23, 08:51 PM
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Is the fork turned 180 degrees (so its backwards) ?

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Old 04-23-23, 09:18 PM
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Asking if a fork is backwards is almost insulting, but not impossible
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Old 04-23-23, 09:20 PM
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low tire pressure? I have seen the backwards for on a super cheap bike once.
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Old 04-23-23, 09:25 PM
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Captain Obvious reporting in.

But not “insulting” to a self proclaimed newbie.

it had to be asked given the description.

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Old 04-23-23, 09:33 PM
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you have purchased a rather short, fast handling Race Bike. Moots makes another model, the "45"... it might be a better choice for you. To put it in another frame.. You wanted a new Corvette and bought a supercharged Shelby Cobra.

Have you checked the steering head adjustment? if the bearings are a bit tight, the bike will tend to tuck into a corner and want to stay tucked in...

PS.. there are friendlier, better handling, Gravel bikes out there that cost far less.. like, about 1/2 what you paid.... just a heads-up.
oh, and two reviews say that they wanted a lower gearing... i'd drop two on the big ring and three on the small ring.... just my opinions.

check those head bearings first... and try sliding the seat back a touch too.....

Last edited by maddog34; 04-23-23 at 10:01 PM.
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Old 04-23-23, 09:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Barry2
Is the fork turned 180 degrees (so its backwards) ?

Barry
As far as I can tell, the fork looks right. I'll post a photo once I can.

I've only had it for couple days, but I've already found several issues with it.
  • The front brake was making noise, and today I noticed, by accident, that the screw and the safety pin was missing. That could have been dangerous.
  • the valve stem caps are missing as well.
  • the chains was slipping and rubbing against the sprocket. It took me couple hours to learn and make all the adjustments. I think it's still not 100%.
The point being, the mechanic that put the bike together did a sloppy job, so I'm just worried that he might have missed something that's causing the issue I described with the handlebar.

P.S.
Yes, I've put plenty of air in the tires (about 65 PSI to be exact).
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Old 04-23-23, 09:49 PM
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Here is a photo of the fork:
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Old 04-23-23, 09:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Barry2
Captain Obvious reporting in.

But not “insulting” to a self proclaimed newbie.

it had to be asked given the description.
I think it is insulting to ask if the fork was backwards on a Moots Routt RSL, which the OP mentioned at the start.
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Old 04-23-23, 10:01 PM
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Originally Posted by soyabean
I think it is insulting to ask if the fork was backwards.

If you read the thread, thats already been mentioned.

SO WHAT, I ASKED.
I wasnt mean, nasty, or pointy fingered.
Just trying to help, given there was no photo.
Never even seen or heard of this brand.

GET OVER IT

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Old 04-23-23, 10:14 PM
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Seriously, I'd have to ride and examine the bike personally. Have an experienced rider/mechanic have a look.
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Old 04-23-23, 10:16 PM
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Originally Posted by maddog34
you have purchased a rather short, fast handling Race Bike. Moots makes another model, the "45"... it might be a better choice for you. To put it in another frame.. You wanted a new Corvette and bought a supercharged Shelby Cobra.

Have you checked the steering head adjustment? if the bearings are a bit tight, the bike will tend to tuck into a corner and want to stay tucked in...

PS.. there are friendlier, better handling, Gravel bikes out there that cost far less.. like, about 1/2 what you paid.... just a heads-up.
oh, and two reviews say that they wanted a lower gearing... i'd drop two on the big ring and three on the small ring.... just my opinions.

check those head bearings first... and try sliding the seat back a touch too.....
I did consider the Routt 45, but I wanted a gravel bike that was "quicker" and little more suitable for the road, and I think that's the RSL. I do have another gravel bike, Fairlight Faran with 50mm tires, that costs far less, but it's HEAVY compared to the Moots.

I actually don't know how I'm supposed to "check those head bearing". As I mentioned, If I pick up the bike and turn the handlebar in either direction, it feels very smooth with no resistance or any kind of pull whatsoever.
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Old 04-24-23, 12:07 AM
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Originally Posted by MrFriendly
While riding, when the handle bar is in center position, the bike is very stable and it just glides; however, if I turn handlebar to the left or right just a few degrees, I feel a slight pull in that direction. The pull isn't strong enough for me to lose control, but it is strong enough for it to be noticeable.
What you describe sounds to me like the characteristics of steering a bicycle.
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Old 04-24-23, 12:09 AM
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Originally Posted by MrFriendly
I did consider the Routt 45, but I wanted a gravel bike that was "quicker" and little more suitable for the road, and I think that's the RSL. I do have another gravel bike, Fairlight Faran with 50mm tires, that costs far less, but it's HEAVY compared to the Moots.

I actually don't know how I'm supposed to "check those head bearing". As I mentioned, If I pick up the bike and turn the handlebar in either direction, it feels very smooth with no resistance or any kind of pull whatsoever.
Ok.. then it might be a fit issue.. if you're too far forward, the bike falls harder into a corner... i'd suggest you locate a shop capable of setting up a correct fit.. search BikeForums to see what comes back regarding fit to improve handling, and there are any number of Vids online..Owner reviews that aren't just flowery sales pitches might be helpful too... one mentioned a shorter steering stem.The gearing may be fine for Predominately road work.. Not sure what terrain you ride.

Last edited by maddog34; 04-24-23 at 12:17 AM.
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Old 04-24-23, 12:30 AM
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Originally Posted by soyabean
I think it is insulting to ask if the fork was backwards on a Moots Routt RSL, which the OP mentioned at the start.
I wasn't insulted, not one bit. And yes, I'm a complete newbie; i did my very first rear derailleur adjustment today, and I rather not have to do it again .
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Old 04-24-23, 12:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Eric F
What you describe sounds to me like the characteristics of steering a bicycle.
Yes probably, but then why does it not happen with my other gravel bike (i.e., the Faran)? The angles of the fork and all are very similar between the two bikes, so I'm trying to understands what's causing it exactly.
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Old 04-24-23, 12:50 AM
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Originally Posted by maddog34
Ok.. then it might be a fit issue.. if you're too far forward, the bike falls harder into a corner... i'd suggest you locate a shop capable of setting up a correct fit.. search BikeForums to see what comes back regarding fit to improve handling, and there are any number of Vids online..Owner reviews that aren't just flowery sales pitches might be helpful too... one mentioned a shorter steering stem.The gearing may be fine for Predominately road work.. Not sure what terrain you ride.
It can't be a fit issue, because they performed a comprehensive bike fitting on me using Retul's 3D motion capture system before the bike was built.
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Old 04-24-23, 01:14 AM
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Originally Posted by MrFriendly
Yes probably, but then why does it not happen with my other gravel bike (i.e., the Faran)? The angles of the fork and all are very similar between the two bikes, so I'm trying to understands what's causing it exactly.
There are a lot of factors that determine steering response.

If you bought the Moots from a bike shop, take it back and have them address any quality/assembly concerns (missing valve caps is not a concern).
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Old 04-24-23, 05:46 AM
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Except at very low speed, a bike is "steered" by leaning, not by using the handlebar to "steer". Your fork is not backwards. It is possible that what you are experiencing on one bike and not the other could be due to differences in the geometry between the two, if it is happening at lower speeds. Seems like you aren't confident in the prep by the mechanic. If for nothing but peace of mind, you might want to have a different shop with a reputable mechanic go over the bike.
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Old 04-24-23, 06:17 AM
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Originally Posted by freeranger
Except at very low speed, a bike is "steered" by leaning, not by using the handlebar to "steer". Your fork is not backwards. It is possible that what you are experiencing on one bike and not the other could be due to differences in the geometry between the two, if it is happening at lower speeds. Seems like you aren't confident in the prep by the mechanic. If for nothing but peace of mind, you might want to have a different shop with a reputable mechanic go over the bike.
I agree here. Considering the sloppy build, I would have a different shop check it out.
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Old 04-24-23, 06:56 AM
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^^^ I could not agree more, new to cycling with many 1,000 invested to enjoy that bike and need a mechanic you can trust now and in the future.
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Old 04-24-23, 07:01 AM
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the front wheel thru-axle is tightened properly?
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Old 04-24-23, 07:56 AM
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aren't all bikes going to pull to one side if you turn the handlebars?
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Old 04-24-23, 08:46 AM
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Originally Posted by MrFriendly
Yes, I've put plenty of air in the tires (about 65 PSI to be exact).
What size are the tires? The Moots website indicates that they are 700 x 43. If that is the case 65 psi is too high pressure for tires that wide
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Old 04-24-23, 09:46 AM
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Originally Posted by alcjphil
What size are the tires? The Moots website indicates that they are 700 x 43. If that is the case 65 psi is too high pressure for tires that wide
Oh crap, Max 75psi is for Tubed, and for Tubeless the max psi is 60. I have tubeless, so I brought it down to about 50pis, thanks! The tires are Panaracer GravelKing Slick 700 x 38.
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