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Weeble wobbles but wheels shouldn't

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Weeble wobbles but wheels shouldn't

Old 07-05-06, 10:56 AM
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JT52
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Weeble wobbles but wheels shouldn't

Yesterday while out on a longish ride I had occasion to ride no-hands. Normally I avoid doing this sort of thing but a shoulder injury I'm working through was giving me some pain so I sat up for a minute. I was going about 25mph and noticed my front wheel was wobbling - not enough to make me feel like I was in danger of losing control, but it was a pronounced wobble that I could feel as well as see.

I've never had a bike do this before. Does anyone have any ideas on what might be causing this? I'm thinking:

* Wheel not true (seems to be, though)

* tire mounted crooked (looks pretty good)

* frame not aligned properly (I don't even know what that means!)

The bike is a three year old Surly CrossCheck with stock wheels (Alex). No accidents.

Any thoughts?

Thanks!
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Old 07-05-06, 11:17 AM
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filtersweep
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I am sure someone will chime in with oscillation from reaching a resonant frequency.

I would suggest that it is common, what you experience. I think it has less to do with the wheel than the fact that your steering geometry and your rock hard road tires promote this sort of thing.

Does it happen when you pedal through it?
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Old 07-05-06, 12:20 PM
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Does it happen when you pedal through it?
Well, I didn't try that. But the slower I went the more it subsided until about 15mph where it's undetectable. I'm riding Panaracer 700X32 tires at about 80 psi.
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Old 07-05-06, 12:22 PM
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Check the front hub.
It may have come a bit loose or the bearings may be shot.
While you're at it, you may as well check your stem and headset to make sure they're nice and snug.
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Old 07-05-06, 12:26 PM
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+1 the steering geometry. Seems as though this is becoming more and more frequent.
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Old 07-05-06, 12:36 PM
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while the wheel may be true it may not be balanced.

I base this on absolutely no engineering training or actual mechanical knowledge.
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Old 07-05-06, 02:17 PM
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it likely is oscillation, and its subtle enough your hands dampen it out when your on the bars. Can you make it go away by speeding up above 25 mph? If it only occurs within a certain speed range its likely oscillation due to a resonant frequency. One way to deal with it is to press a knee into the top tube.
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Old 07-05-06, 02:42 PM
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Ceck your cones make sure their tight enough on the front wheel first off. If yoru bike has refelctors on the wheels remove them. Heck a reflector could have a slight tilt to it causeign it to vibrate on your spokes and translate that vibration in to the perceived wobble.
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Old 07-05-06, 04:29 PM
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Take the reflectors off anyways thats weight
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Old 07-06-06, 07:55 AM
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Thanks for the input! The wobbling disappears as soon as I press the top tube with my knees. I'll check the hub and headset as well...
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