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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi from the UK, apologies this is my first time on the site so I'm not sure if this is the right place.

I've just put my Bonneville T120 in for a 10k service and had new Hekinau K60 scout tyres fitted.

Unfortunately on the ride home my steering was barely turning resulting in a very dangerous ride.

I took it back and they have told me its knocking and the steering bearing needs replacing. The problem was made more obvious by the tyres because they are less rounded than the stock.

Is this normal at 10k miles? I can't believe it would break so soon, not like I am taking it round a race track every day.
Turned into a very expensive day as its looking like another £200 for a bike that was driving fine beforehand.

Thanks
Harry
 

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2014 Scrambler
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Hi, BP and welcome.
Sorry for your misfortune. Firstly, I run the same tires and found they turn in very well, at least better than the Pirelli Sport Demons I had before. Did the service tech inflate the tires to the proper pressure? There is a noticeable difference in turning performance with a 4-5 PSI drop, I have found.
Second, depending on how the bike has been exposed to corrosives - kept outside or garaged, what kind of cleaning agent is used, are you the original owner and what did the previous owner do to the bike - some kind of contaminant could have gotten into the bearing. As for "knocking", can you explain more? That's generally a term I've heard regarding inappropriate engine noises, not steering noises.
 

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They may have used the term knocking to describe the feel of roughness of the bearings or slight deformation of the races (detents). If the bearings were slightly loose to begin with and not torqued correctly, they could wear out sooner. Did the mechanic raise the front wheel off the ground to test the steering bearings and also lower a bit onto to the ground to test the lower bearings? The new tires certainly have a much different profile than the stock fitment, dual sport vs street.

If it were me, I would want them to show me how they determined the bearings need replacing. I once had a mechanic tell me that I needed a new clutch on one of my bikes when all it needed was an adjustment.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you for your responses, good to know it can run smoothly.

Yes, the "knocking" refers to when turning the wheel on the ground, the head racers almost lock in place towards the centre. It was tested raised and also on the ground.

What PSI should the K60's be?


I may write to triumph head office because it seems very odd that it would go on such a new bike just a few months out of warranty.

Attached is a picture of the new setup
732894
 

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That's exactly the look you should have on one of these!
Run the tires as proscribed by Triumph and written on your manufacturing sticker at the frame head between your triple clamps. My air-cooled Scrambler is 30 front 41 rear. Just curious, why the K60s on a T120?

Also, for the future, there is a "water-cooled" side to the Twin Talk community. Not that a head bearing issue would depend on air- vs water-cooled, unless manufacturing processes changed. Just consider hitting that side up as well in case there is something unique to the newer Twins you need. Nevertheless, there are folks on the a/c side who own/have experience with both.

Good luck with Triumph HQ.
 

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So steering head bearings definitely shouldn’t need replacing after 10k miles. They can be ruined by pressure washing but a simple grease repack and adjustment should sort that out if caught early. It sounds like they have either been badly adjusted from very early on or ignored. I can’t believe that your bike went in for service and was given back to you like this, a check of the headstock bearings should be part of a service (in my opinion)..
is this a Triumph Dealership?


Chris
 

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Sounds to me like they’ve been run too slack for some time and have indented the races, so they are only smooth over a limited arc, around straight ahead. They should have been adjusted and greased before this happened. The modern trend for not having a mainstand doesn’t help, as with one it’s an easy check.
 

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I’m really surprised at some of the replies.
When your bike goes in for a ‘service’ and comes out with knackered head bearings something is very wrong with the service department; in fact the mechanic needs the bloody sack. Sending a machine out unfit for the road is actually an omission in his duty as a competent person.
What’s the point of paying a ‘mechanic’ to change oil and filter, if he isn’t going to do a full service (which should include headstock bearing check and a test ride)? Utterly **** service that winds me up.
Speak to the CAB for advice.

I hope you get it sorted mate.
 

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I’m really surprised at some of the replies.
When your bike goes in for a ‘service’ and comes out with knackered head bearings something is very wrong with the service department; in fact the mechanic needs the bloody sack. Sending a machine out unfit for the road is actually an omission in his duty as a competent person.
What’s the point of paying a ‘mechanic’ to change oil and filter, if he isn’t going to do a full service (which should include headstock bearing check and a test ride)? Utterly **** service that winds me up.
Speak to the CAB for advice.

I hope you get it sorted mate.
Right? Didn't they do a test ride? Did they notice and just figured maybe you wouldn't? Did they cause the damage? Maybe it was an honest mistake, but if thats the case, what else did they neglect/miss?

Christ.
 

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Right? Didn't they do a test ride? Did they notice and just figured maybe you wouldn't? Did they cause the damage? Maybe it was an honest mistake, but if thats the case, what else did they neglect/miss?

Christ.
I know! If it were my old bike (which would mean I’d lost the use of my hands and eyes) they’d be picking up their teeth with broken fingers ... it’s bloody shocking what people let crooks get away with...


Chris
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for the responses. They did say it should be replaced soon when I went to pick it up, but I could tell straight away on the drive home that it was dangerously bad.

Haven spoken to head office, as I thought they are not interested due to it being out of warranty now.

"Triumph do not specify a life expectancy for the head race bearings as their lifespan is heavily affected by many external influences that we cannot control. We do specify in the service schedule that the bearings are checked and adjusted on annual services as well as at the mileage based services"

Tempted to say i'll trade it in for my Dad's Vauxhall then as he's done 80,000 miles with no bearing issues!
 

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If a bike is pressure washed, this will remove the grease, and there are various other things that will kill headstock bearings. But the point is that it wasn’t picked up on service and if it was they let you ride home. I’d not be going back there mate. Just renew them, adjust them correctly, and enjoy the bike.


Chris
 

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I am over 84,000 miles on my 13 scrambler. many different tire brands and styles over the years. Still on the original bearings. I would question that dealer and see what they did to it.
 
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