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Lovely weather today for a good drive in the country which ended badly.
A rabbit unexpectedly (of course) crossed the street just in front of me. I braked and steered to the right (should never do both of course), got off the tarmac into the gravel next to the tarmac, lost it, bike went sideways and slid on the grass towards a wooden pole. The wheel/mudguard hit it quite hard. Result: dent in the mudguard, mirrors swept away, some bruises and that was that, I thought.
No. Closer look showed minor scratches on the RH downpipe and the RH silencer is bent a little to the wheel. So I was lucky. Until I got on the bike again and saw the steering was not aligned anymore. With the front wheel in the straight ahead position the steering is a bit to the right. There is nothing obvious to be seen, no cracks anywhere.

I "think" the one of the forks is not straight anymore but it is hard to tell by just looking at it.
So, what to do? Remove both forks? Then, how can you tell it is not straight?

Could there be another reason for the steering bar not straight?

Damn I wanted to keep my feb 2001 Bonnie original :crying:
 

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I "think" the one of the forks is not straight anymore but it is hard to tell by just looking at it.
So, what to do? Remove both forks? Then, how can you tell it is not straight?

Could there be another reason for the steering bar not straight?
If you're lucky you might find that the forks are just 'twisted' out of alignment in the top/bottom yokes. Loosen the bolts a little and standing with the front wheel between your legs, try to twist it back, using the handlebars. If it was just knocked out of alignment it should go back quite easily. Bent forks would probably show the front wheel not being aligned (spindle not at 90 deg to the fork legs). To check for straightness you would have to strip the forks and roll the inner legs on a flat surface.
 

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As Mr. Ripper said - They may be just twisted in the triple tree. There are also rubber grommets under the handle bar clamps that may have got a little tweaked. Loosen and straighten by feel and sight and torque down to spec.

If actually suspect a bent fork you might try putting a straight edge on the fork tube and that can tell you if there is a bend from the lower tree to the fork lower. Otherwise it is remove and roll on flat surface as Mr. Ripper also described.

Front mud guard can be replaced with a like steel item and muffler also if it is bad enough - Then she will be all good and still original.

Should have just run over the bunny - but that's hindsight.
 

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Bunnies are soft, you go right through them without noticing. This I know ;)

Hopefully your forks are straight. and the top plate isn't bent. My handlebars we very out-of-alignment after a slow speed drop on a dirt road. Like Back2-2 says, they move on the rubber grommets in the triple tree, loosening that up and getting everything back in place helps. And re-aligning the forks. Took me a while to get mine aligned just right actually, but I had nothing bent and got it fixes with just time. Hoping the same for you.

Have another one in my garage now that my Dad had an off on, bars twisted a bit. So you and I will be fighting the same fight at the same time :)
 

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.... Until I got on the bike again and saw the steering was not aligned anymore. With the front wheel in the straight ahead position the steering is a bit to the right. There is nothing obvious to be seen, no cracks anywhere...........
I had a very gentle off once and after the steering was way off (I think as you are describing?), very odd driving home - handlebars off at an odd angle but still driving straight! Do as others say but also check the bolts that hold the handlebar bottom clamps to the yoke are still straight. This is the first weak point to go in this design and mine were well bent and I didn't hit anything..........
 

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Did Nijntje (the bunny) get away?

FWIW I had an off like this last year. I had to replace some peripheral parts and the speedometer and gauge panel, learn to live with the minor scuffing on the left Staintunes silencer, follow the above procedure for the forks, and live with a cast on my broken ankle for two weeks.

Since then I've nearly had two more minor tank slappers, both from sloppy, lackadaisical riding style, not paying enough attention to what I'm doing.
 

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I know this is a procedure for just the front wheel but maybe it will come in handy. Goes hand in hand with re-seating the forks in the triple tree also.

Procedure when replacing the front wheel:
1.- Fit washer and nut to the spindle and hand tighten
2.- Slide the caliper into position ensuring the pads pass either side of the disc and tighten fixing bolts to 28Nm.
3.- Operate front brake a few times to ensure pads are in firm contact with the disc.
4.- Lower the bike to the ground and park on the side stand.
5.- For models with cable driven speedometer: Ensure the drive tag is tight against the rear of the lug on the left fork.
6.- Tighten spindle nut to 60Nm
7.-For models with cable driven speedometer: Reconnect cable to the speedometer drive and tighten the securing screw.
8.- Pump the front forks a few times to settle them in position and finally tighten the spindle clamp bolt to 27Nm.
 

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Not sure I'd take Del's advice as gospel he recently started making a fork brace out of brass on his Missis' Triumph Scrambler, not understanding that the item on there from stock is a serious fork brace, not just a bracket. I and a few others tried to tell him, but he just deleted our comments...... Not sure whether he finished it or not, hopefully not............

This video is OK but OP please do check those bolts out...............
 

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Oh dont bag the guy for everything he does. Good grief.

That is a very good video on how to realign the triple tees is it not?

Stick to the topic at hand. Realign the front end.
 

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I said the video was OK.

Just trying to help out and removing a fork brace is relevant to alignment issues, granted not in this case but may help somebody out not to do something silly.........

The important point to me is that the bolts may well need replacing I would as a matter of course..........

And totally off the subject - Kiwi, Kiwi what's the score? >:)
 

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Ha ha.

3/1 at the moment.

Rugby World Cup Winners.
1987 – New Zealand beat France 29-9.
1999 – Australia beat France 35-12.
2003 – England beat Australia 20-17.
2011 – New Zealand beat France 8-7.
2015 – New Zealand beat Australia 34-17.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks all for the advice and tips. Now I have some hope it might not be a bent fork. I will check the alignment but a sore arm and thumbs prevent me from doing anything at the moment :grin2: So it will be a few days, I will report back.
 

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I've hit a few critters over the years, cat, ground squirrels. Never turn or leave the road, Only bad things can happen. The only time to take evasive maneuver is when a deer, Big dog or something larger is out in front of you. Deer are especially hard to see when standing off the road near brush, They blend in really well, It's usually the younger ones that jump out in front of you. I live in deer country and have to be constantly on the prowl for them, It's usually worse in mornings or late afternoon when there out foraging
 

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Too late for advice but for future reference...

I watched a bike hit a cat that ran out of the tire wall at Nelson Ledges. I'd estimate 150+ coming out of the little kink in that long sweeping section that's not quite a straight. Cat disintegrated, bike twitched a bit. Since you're pretty much committed to the line at that point I don't think he even thought about changing course.
 

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Sorry to hear Mate.

I make it a habit of NOT trying to avoid any critter that I can easily ride over. Now deer are another story.

Glad you weren't hurt. Good luck fixing your bike.

Rick G
 

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Thanks all for the advice and tips. Now I have some hope it might not be a bent fork. I will check the alignment but a sore arm and thumbs prevent me from doing anything at the moment :grin2: So it will be a few days, I will report back.

:sip:dunno
 
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