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slyyder

Gravel = devil, even at 1 MPH.... Questions about repair...

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slyyder
So this AM i decided to take my bike 2 blocks to visit my wife at her coffee stand. Everything was fine, until I got there, and I was pulling into the driveway to park. The driveway is gravel, and I was turning, and squeeze the front break a little bit and the back end just went out from under me. No damage to me, but the bike has a few scratches, and it looks like the handlebars are... well not bent, but misaligned. Posting pictures of the damage, but what I want to know is how to fix the handlebars. Any advice is appreciated.
 
hsPB9x6.jpg
 
IDZwdeE.jpg
 

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NICKY NEON
breaking in a turn on gravel. you treat gravel like ice.
might have to take the bar off and put it in a vice.

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yamabob
Classic low side crash. Rotating wheels have huge gyroscopic energy. Lock the front wheel in a skid, nothing is holding the bike upright, and you tip over. Dirt is where the rear brake is safer.

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jerryv
At super low speeds I only use the rear, especially if the front wheel is not perfectly straight. If you lock the front (I've done it) at low speed and the front wheel is turned, you get nose dive and it will tip. Bet you have the sick feeling in your gut and got mad at yourself. It sucks, but lesson learned and move on. I can see how the bar is misaligned. I'm sure you will get wise advice on how to fix that; wish I had some, instead I'll just sympathize.

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Guru
That sucks, it happens to all of us at some point. Glad it's just your bike (and your pride) that got hurt. Gravel is sometimes like riding on marbles and stuff like this happens in an instant.
I guess you will have to start disassembling and see what the real damage it apart from the bar end (which I would just replace). I could be just a bent or misaligned bolt at the base which will straighten itself with a little help once you loosen it.

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howlinhoss
Slyyder sorry to hear about your low side. As far as repairs go here are some suggestions:
 
Bar Ends: remove, sand and repaint.
 
Handlebars: remove, inspect, and realign. If they are badly bent I am not sure bending the bars back to normal is a smart idea. One too many bends in the metal might make them weaker. Personally I would replace if they are bad. Get some nice Renthals or ProTaper bars.
 
Are your fairings (wait what fairings) damaged?
 

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Cruizin
Sorry to hear that man. At least it happened at low speed. Grab front breaks in a real corner and you could be dead.
 
Put bars in a vise or just go get new ones but ten ya gotta figure a new way to mount the display.

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cassecou
Is it the handle bar or the front wheel that is miss align?

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Guest montana07
Bummer man, sorry to hear about your drop.

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feliz
Condolences!

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slyyder
I undid some of the handlebar screws and tried moving it around and I really can't figure out what is bent. I'm going to take it to the shop soon... If something is bent, i'll probably replace the front forks, the bars, and get shorty levers(I had planned on doing that anyways.) Any suggestions for forks and bars?
 

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cassecou
I undid some of the handlebar screws and tried moving it around and I really can't figure out what is bent. I'm going to take it to the shop soon... If something is bent, i'll probably replace the front forks, the bars, and get shorty levers(I had planned on doing that anyways.) Any suggestions for forks and bars?
 
 
It could be the front wheel. If it is, I have fixed some dirt bikes by holding the front tire hard and strait and twisting the handle bar until its align. But it was on much lighter dirt bikes. I don't know how difficult it is on street bikes .

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cassecou
Is it the handle bar or the front wheel that is miss align?
From that view point it looks like both are off.
Looks like you are right. 

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cassecou
Looking at the picture again, the display/handle bar holder looks like it moved right from its original position.

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Guru
Yeah I think you're right. I highly doubt that the whole front end is fubar and the forks need replacement form a little drop like that.
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cassecou
Yeah I think you're right. I highly doubt that the whole front end is fubar and the forks need replacement form a little drop like that.
Agree, slyyder needs to get with a friend, put 2 brains into it, some simple tools and some elbow grease. I don't think the dealer needs to get involve. It was indeed a simple drop at 1mph. There is noway the front end had any damage done to it. Keep us updated slyyder.
 

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slyyder
Well some of my problem is that I'm not real mechanically inclined, and I don't want to break the bike any further. I've got a friend that has done a bit with bikes, and I looked at it with him, and he couldn't figure out what was bent either.

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cassecou
In that case you might not have the choice, to the dealer it is.
Hopefully they won't charge you too much as nothing too bad has been done. Watch them fix it, in case there is a next time  :o
But part of the hobby is to tweak the bike. The more you do it, the better and more confident you become. It's time to make new friends slyyder, the kind that can teach you how to mess up a bike :D , and then fix it back up. ;)
 

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lonerider
Ouch! So sorry this happened. Gravel sux.
Yes gravel = devil. BUT 
gravel could be a lot of FUN (i learned offroad as a kid). As wet roads.  The pleasure of controlled slides. Yesterday, i did a portion of gravel roads i used to ride with my previous dualsport. It was a lot of fun at the beginning. But it was tiring because of the sliding of the front end. Would i put some Avon Distanzia (used on my previous V-Strom 1000 and WR250X) for my next set of tires?
 
Doing some practice on gravel roads could be useful. A wet parking lot also is great to practice some emergency braking and cornering. A good way to really learn your bike.
 
Wet roads, gravel roads = devil? But try to master it and it will become a friend. ;)
 

past bikes: WR250X, KLR650, V-Strom 1000, DR650, FZ-6, SV650S, Seca II, GS400S, Seca 750, YZ80.

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Guest Ralph
One leg each side of the wheel facing the back of the bike get hold of the bars and holding the wheel with your legs give the bars a jerk in the direction you want them to go, once happy tighten the clamp bolts, it may help to loosen them slightly if they wont move.

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wideopenallthetime
Buy new bars and risers...maybe even just risers...they are made to bend to prevent the forks from getting damaged so I bet thats what your problem is. Might be wrong but it's cheep to try and you might even be able to see the damage just by removing them

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John
All that damage at 1mph low side? Just replace the bar end. As for any bend, it's hard to tell from the photo. My friend had a low side turning into a gas station with gravel at the entrance, 15mph? Ended up with a scrap knee and elbow with rash fairings. He was a good rider too. Good luck. Keep us posted on what's going on with that front. Forks should be ok, if not, that makes me question the build quality of the bike.

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