Fork/Steering slop?

Hi Folks:

My 78 Puch Maxi has a disturbing amount of slop/play in the steering/fork head tube. Essentially, when I stop, I can feel the entire top of the steering move forward a bit. I'm sure it's just a couple milimeters or so, but it freaks me out. I purchased a new bearing set from Treatland, got it all installed, only to still have the same problem. Even with all the new parts, the main tube coming up through the fork yolk/triple tree is shifting back and forth when braking.

There is a top tapered "washer" that looks like it should hold it firm with the top nut on firmly, but that is not the case.

What's the solution to this? Do I need a new top triple tree/yoke, or a new tapered washer? Or should I try to shim it?

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

A 41 year old moped needs some love and attention.

The races and bearings need cleaned, lubed and adjusted.

Adjusting them now would fix the problem but prolong the inevitable cleaning and lubing that needs done now.

Do all that and see what ya got before replacing anything.(edited)

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

Did you see where I said I replaced the bearings and bushings? New kit from Treats installed carefully as I know. Is there some trick to "adjusting"? It is getting plenty of "love" LOL. But head still moves back and forth on top a bit.

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

Are you sure the new bearing races seated tightly into the steering neck of frame?

Also, there should always be two threaded nuts. One below and one above top triple tree.

A pic would help because God knows what p.o. did.(edited)

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

You probably didn't put it together properly, forgot a part or it just needs to be tightend

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

I'll try to take a pic tomorrow.

I've looked at the parts diagrams online and everything looks in order.

I believe the bearings all seated, but I will recheck.

On the top end, from top to bottom:

1. Large Chrome nut

2. Beveled washer, flat on top, taper on underside that fits into triple tree.

3. Triple tree.

4. Flat washer

5. Top bearing race (screws onto tube.

6. bearing retainer (cage and balls)

7. bearing cup seat.

Everything feels sold up/down. No play. Wheel moves left and right smoothly.

At the top where the tube goes through the triple tree, the tube can move forward and back under load. I.e. when braking, bottom of fork is stopped and pushed toward back of bike. It seems to be piviting at the bottom of the tube, which does not have any apparent slop. At the top, there is a few mm of slop between the triple tree/yoke and the tube. Under load the tube moves toward the front of the hole and then when load releases, it moves back.

I would think the tapered washer that goes on top, before the final large cap, would push into the gap a bit and take up the slop, but it doesn't work that way. In addition, when I look at photos online, the pics I see don't show a tapered washer, just a flat washer, so I'm confused by that. I have another almost identical Maxi Sport that was abused more, has 4 times the miles and the steering is solid, no slop.

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

> Lee Snover Wrote:

> -------------------------------------------------------

> I'll try to take a pic tomorrow.

>

> I've looked at the parts diagrams online and everything looks in order.

>

> I believe the bearings all seated, but I will recheck.

>

> On the top end, from top to bottom:

>

> 1. Large Chrome nut

>

> 2. Beveled washer, flat on top, taper on underside that fits into triple

> tree.

>

> 3. Triple tree.

>

> 4. Flat washer

>

> 5. Top bearing race (screws onto tube.

>

> 6. bearing retainer (cage and balls)

>

> 7. bearing cup seat.

>

> Everything feels sold up/down. No play. Wheel moves left and right

> smoothly.

>

> At the top where the tube goes through the triple tree, the tube can

> move forward and back under load. I.e. when braking, bottom of fork is

> stopped and pushed toward back of bike. It seems to be piviting at the

> bottom of the tube, which does not have any apparent slop. At the top,

> there is a few mm of slop between the triple tree/yoke and the tube.

> Under load the tube moves toward the front of the hole and then when

> load releases, it moves back.

>

> I would think the tapered washer that goes on top, before the final

> large cap, would push into the gap a bit and take up the slop, but it

> doesn't work that way. In addition, when I look at photos online, the

> pics I see don't show a tapered washer, just a flat washer, so I'm

> confused by that. I have another almost identical Maxi Sport that was

> abused more, has 4 times the miles and the steering is solid, no slop.

And is all the hardware the same and in order as the other?

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

A cracked or broken bearing race will reak havoc like this one on left.

20160603_152851.jpg
20160420_143714.jpg

(edited)

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

Hopefully the frame/head tube is not elongated from this play going on a while?

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

Hard to say, this is how I got it.

Things are pretty tight. Didn't want to overtighten and ruin the bearings.

The races and such are all new, and they went in VERY tight, even with putting in the freezer. So I don't think there is anything in the frame causing this. The triple tree/yoke is where the problems. I'm surprised there isn't more direct support to the tree up top. Eventually this may get a EB Fork, but for now I want to get this sorted.

I'm going to take Puch#2 apart a bit and see what looks different. I think I could shim this as well.

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

Looked at my 1980 Maxi Sport for comparison. Under main Chrome cap on top there is NO washer, flat of flanged. The yoke looks like it has a tight fitting plastic insert, and everything is tight and smooth. I haven't seen any kind of insert like that in any of the parts diagrams. Can't tell if it is bonded to the yoke somehow or just tight fit, but the yoke is basically flat where the tube comes through.

On my problem child 78, it had this tapered washer. Honestly it looks more like a race washer, but the yoke is "depressed" where the taper would fit down in. Maybe this was a rigged solution? IDK. So, I'm going to try taking the yoke off and see if I can hammer the lip down around the hole and tighten up the opening. I don't want to bugger the threads on the tube, so I will wrap them tight with teflon tape and see how tight I can get it and protect the tube. Frustrating little problem, but I will persevere. If that don't work, I guess it's a good excuse to buy a new fork set with hydraulic shocks and an option for a front disc! ;-)

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

> Lee Snover Wrote:

> -------------------------------------------------------

> Did you see where I said I replaced the bearings and bushings? New kit

> from Treats installed carefully as I know. Is there some trick to

> "adjusting"? It is getting plenty of "love" LOL. But head still

> moves back and forth on top a bit.

It’s crazy how much people don’t actually pay any attention to your post before they’re rushing to hear themselves speak

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

> Lee Snover Wrote:

> -------------------------------------------------------

> Looked at my 1980 Maxi Sport for comparison. Under main Chrome cap on

> top there is NO washer, flat of flanged. The yoke looks like it has a

> tight fitting plastic insert, and everything is tight and smooth. I

> haven't seen any kind of insert like that in any of the parts diagrams.

> Can't tell if it is bonded to the yoke somehow or just tight fit, but

> the yoke is basically flat where the tube comes through.

>

I actually have the same problem on my Maxi. I built it from the frame up. Took the original tree assembly apart and put it back together according to the manual and exactly as it came apart. I seriously don’t think we installed this incorrectly as is people’s go-to conclusion; but rather a manufacturer defect (I mean, they are stupid little mopeds).

I simply adjusted my riding style to it and left it until I decide to upgrade to beefier forks. That’s if I don’t just outright buy a GSXr and be done with these childish and impossibly broken toys.

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

> Lee Snover Wrote:

> -------------------------------------------------------

> Looked at my 1980 Maxi Sport for comparison. Under main Chrome cap on

> top there is NO washer, flat of flanged. The yoke looks like it has a

> tight fitting plastic insert, and everything is tight and smooth. I

> haven't seen any kind of insert like that in any of the parts diagrams.

> Can't tell if it is bonded to the yoke somehow or just tight fit, but

> the yoke is basically flat where the tube comes through.

>

> On my problem child 78, it had this tapered washer. Honestly it looks

> more like a race washer, but the yoke is "depressed" where the taper

> would fit down in. Maybe this was a rigged solution? IDK. So, I'm

> going to try taking the yoke off and see if I can hammer the lip down

> around the hole and tighten up the opening. I don't want to bugger the

> threads on the tube, so I will wrap them tight with teflon tape and see

> how tight I can get it and protect the tube. Frustrating little

> problem, but I will persevere. If that don't work, I guess it's a

> good excuse to buy a new fork set with hydraulic shocks and an option

> for a front disc! ;-)

It sounds like the other one had the same problem and someone rigged it with a home made shim.

How tight are you torquing top nut above triple clamp?

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

> Tone It Down Wrote:

> -------------------------------------------------------

> > Lee Snover Wrote:

>

> > -------------------------------------------------------

>

> > Looked at my 1980 Maxi Sport for comparison. Under main Chrome cap on

>

> > top there is NO washer, flat of flanged. The yoke looks like it has

> a

>

> > tight fitting plastic insert, and everything is tight and smooth. I

>

> > haven't seen any kind of insert like that in any of the parts

> diagrams.

>

> > Can't tell if it is bonded to the yoke somehow or just tight fit, but

>

> > the yoke is basically flat where the tube comes through.

>

> >

>

> I actually have the same problem on my Maxi. I built it from the frame

> up. Took the original tree assembly apart and put it back together

> according to the manual and exactly as it came apart. I seriously don’t

> think we installed this incorrectly as is people’s go-to conclusion; but

> rather a manufacturer defect (I mean, they are stupid little mopeds).

>

> I simply adjusted my riding style to it and left it until I decide to

> upgrade to beefier forks. That’s if I don’t just outright buy a GSXr and

> be done with these childish and impossibly broken toys.

I like the childish toys. LOL. Yes, something is amiss. I think a PO messed it up with the tapered washer. Could be wrong. I will work it out though.

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

I wanna see a pic of this washer

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

> Mike Boyd Wrote:

> -------------------------------------------------------

> I wanna see a pic of this washer

Right, a pic of any of it would help.

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

Top pic top cap and the "washer" that I don't think is a washer. Bottom pic, hole in fork with depressed lip around tube.

IMG_3553.jpg
IMG_3554.jpg

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

Wish granted. ;-)

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

Yup that's an additional bearing race, not a washer and not original in that order of assembly. There's a race on the bottom of the tube too right?(edited)

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

> Mike Boyd Wrote:

> -------------------------------------------------------

> Yup that's an additional bearing race, not a washer and not original in

> that order of assembly. There's a race on the bottom of the tube too

> right?

Agreed^^

Also, looking at that inner bearing race being used as a washer, I would bet the raised lip is only making matters worse.

Throw it away, not helping(edited)

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

> I like the childish toys. LOL. Yes, something is amiss. I think a PO

> messed it up with the tapered washer. Could be wrong. I will work it

> out though.

Haha. So do I, actually. So do I. And Live Evil is kinda cool. Lol

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

> Mike Boyd Wrote:

> -------------------------------------------------------

> This might help ya get a stronger clamp

>

> https://www.treatland.tv/deluxe-quality-PUCH-n-TOMOS-26mm-top-fork-nut-p/stainless-top-nut-26mm-puch.htm

There's a good top nut already. Nothing wrong with it. Issue is with the yoke hole.

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

> Mike Boyd Wrote:

> -------------------------------------------------------

> Yup that's an additional bearing race, not a washer and not original in

> that order of assembly. There's a race on the bottom of the tube too

> right?

Yes, new top and bottom races, top and bottom of frame tube with new, nicely greased bearings. I thought it looked odd, but that is what was there when I took it apart. The diagrams call for a flat washer. My 1980 has no washer and no slop.

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

> Lee Snover Wrote:

> -------------------------------------------------------

> > Mike Boyd Wrote:

>

> > -------------------------------------------------------

>

> > Yup that's an additional bearing race, not a washer and not original

> in

>

> > that order of assembly. There's a race on the bottom of the tube too

>

> > right?

>

> Yes, new top and bottom races, top and bottom of frame tube with new,

> nicely greased bearings. I thought it looked odd, but that is what was

> there when I took it apart. The diagrams call for a flat washer. My

> 1980 has no washer and no slop.

Put that original nut on and torque to spec. Recheck steering and adjust bearings if neccesary.

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

> live ɘvil Wrote:

> -------------------------------------------------------

> > Lee Snover Wrote:

>

> > -------------------------------------------------------

>

> > > Mike Boyd Wrote:

>

> >

>

> > > -------------------------------------------------------

>

> >

>

> > > Yup that's an additional bearing race, not a washer and not original

>

> > in

>

> >

>

> > > that order of assembly. There's a race on the bottom of the tube too

>

> >

>

> > > right?

>

> >

>

> > Yes, new top and bottom races, top and bottom of frame tube with new,

>

> > nicely greased bearings. I thought it looked odd, but that is what

> was

>

> > there when I took it apart. The diagrams call for a flat washer. My

>

> > 1980 has no washer and no slop.

>

> Put that original nut on and torque to spec. Recheck steering and adjust

> bearings if neccesary.

You keep saying "adjust bearings". What do you mean? They get installed and the adjustable ring gets adjusted. Not too tight to distort the bearings, and not to loose to cause slop. Is there some other "adjustment" I'm missing.

Torquing the head nut is not solving the problem. I tried it with and without. The yoke has been distorted I believe. I will fix the yoke or get a new one.

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

> Lee Snover Wrote:

> -------------------------------------------------------

> > live ɘvil Wrote:

>

> > -------------------------------------------------------

>

> > > Lee Snover Wrote:

>

> >

>

> > > -------------------------------------------------------

>

> >

>

> > > > Mike Boyd Wrote:

>

> >

>

> > >

>

> >

>

> > > > -------------------------------------------------------

>

> >

>

> > >

>

> >

>

> > > > Yup that's an additional bearing race, not a washer and not

> original

>

> >

>

> > > in

>

> >

>

> > >

>

> >

>

> > > > that order of assembly. There's a race on the bottom of the tube

> too

>

> >

>

> > >

>

> >

>

> > > > right?

>

> >

>

> > >

>

> >

>

> > > Yes, new top and bottom races, top and bottom of frame tube with

> new,

>

> >

>

> > > nicely greased bearings. I thought it looked odd, but that is what

>

> > was

>

> >

>

> > > there when I took it apart. The diagrams call for a flat washer.

> My

>

> >

>

> > > 1980 has no washer and no slop.

>

> >

>

> > Put that original nut on and torque to spec. Recheck steering and

> adjust

>

> > bearings if neccesary.

>

> You keep saying "adjust bearings". What do you mean? They get

> installed and the adjustable ring gets adjusted. Not too tight to

> distort the bearings, and not to loose to cause slop. Is there some

> other "adjustment" I'm missing.

>

> Torquing the head nut is not solving the problem. I tried it with and

> without. The yoke has been distorted I believe. I will fix the yoke or

> get a new one.

95% of the time when you properly torque the top nut the second nut below which is above the top bearings will need adjustment because of thread slop. So you loosen top nut adjust second and re torque top nut and check again.

You do have two nuts on steering stem correct? One maybe knurled instead of hex but its threaded none the less.(edited)

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

Btw, The top bearing race would be considered a nut since its threaded.

Also, have you loosened up the lower triple pinch bolts and top fork tube bolts while tightening down steering stem? Re tighten top tubes and pinch bolts last.(edited)

Re: Fork/Steering slop?

> live ɘvil Wrote:

> -------------------------------------------------------

> Btw, The top bearing race would be considered a nut since its threaded.

>

> Also, have you loosened up the lower triple pinch bolts and top fork

> tube bolts while tightening down steering stem? Re tighten top tubes and

> pinch bolts last.

I have not tried that, but I'll give it a go when I pull it apart next.

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