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rhb

Home wheel balancing on the cheap

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rhb
Not sure this was covered previously but here is my rig for balancing wheels and tires at home, link to you tube if you like to see it in action.
The product of a guy with too much time on his hands, I decided to make my own static wheel balancing rig. total cost 500 pesos (10 bucks) for the bearings. I was going to get some cones made and make a stand alone set up which would be universal, but half way through I realized I could use the bikes axles and wheel bearings negating the need for the extra set of bearings, but since I had them, they made an accurate alignment surface and add additional accuracy. so I can just take my tires to a shop 2 kilometers from my house and bring them home and balance them myself.
 

 
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Beemer
I never knew exactly how balancing was done, never asked anyone but it's easy to understand how it's done with the way you taught it. Anyone wanting to balance their own tires should find this video helpful. Nice work!

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rhb
Thanks, I didn't invent it obviously, just my take on it. It should be noted that this is static, not dynamic balancing. Modern spin balance machines detect lateral imbalance as well, but on a relatively narrow motorcycle wheel it becomes less important. The track guys use this method, good enough for me.
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jake
once you start going threw more than one set of tires a year changing them yourself is a huge on saving extra cash ( $30 A TIRE) and not to mention the down time dropping off your tires and picking them up later its a pain for me no close shops. Now I used to change tires on big trucks by hand so these are a piece of cake for me but it might not be for a noob.
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rhb
once you start going threw more than one set of tires a year changing them yourself is a huge on saving extra cash ( $30 A TIRE) and not to mention the down time dropping off your tires and picking them up later its a pain for me no close shops. Now I used to change tires on big trucks by hand so these are a piece of cake for me but it might not be for a noob.
I'm similar, used to change split rims on my old F-250 pick up. I was thinking about popping the tires off the rims myself, but for $1.50 I can have it done, can't buy the spoons locally or justify the time. Here where I live, it is more a matter of lack of expertise. I don't trust the local shops to take the wheels off my bike or install them properly since it has ABS sensors, and there are few places that do any kind of balancing for bikes. I established a rapport with a small tire shop near my home and trained the young man how to properly install the tire on the rim with his machine, he wrapped the dogs with bits of old inner tube and I showed him the red dot to be aligned with the valve stem, rotation orientation, etc. Gave him a 50 cent tip and he is my buddy now. 

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r1limited
personally I am not sold, IMO and I have no science to base this on, but in my opinion inertia differs at various speeds. Meaning the faster you tend to go or the faster a spinning wheel spins.... Oh wait I am quoting a damn song now I am humming that thing in me noodle..
 
SQUIRREL
 
Back to the rotation and inertia. Take a water balloon spin it around or better watch a slow motion video of a drag racers rear wheel. You will see the tire literally change, this the dynamics at higher rotation speeds will change as well. So in my head and if I logically look at what occurs to an object a round object as it moves faster and faster, well I guess what I am saying is I just cant bite.

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rhb
personally I am not sold, IMO and I have no science to base this on, but in my opinion inertia differs at various speeds. Meaning the faster you tend to go or the faster a spinning wheel spins.... Oh wait I am quoting a damn song now I am humming that thing in me noodle.. 
SQUIRREL
 
Back to the rotation and inertia. Take a water balloon spin it around or better watch a slow motion video of a drag racers rear wheel. You will see the tire literally change, this the dynamics at higher rotation speeds will change as well. So in my head and if I logically look at what occurs to an object a round object as it moves faster and faster, well I guess what I am saying is I just cant bite.
Yep, well static balancing does have limitations, especially for large car or truck tires with a lot of mass, traveling lots of miles. The indication for me is that at the track where tire changes are frequent and speeds high, pit crews use this method with success. There are riders who never balance a rear tire and swear it is not necessary. Personally, I think it is a matter of the relatively low rotational mass of motorcycle tires, that makes this method perfectly acceptable. Just do a youtube search and you will see how popular this method is with experienced racers and techs. For example Ari Henning of MC Garage/Motorcyclists Magazine. 
I not trying sell you anything BTW, just provide some valuable insights on something that may or may not trip your trigger :)
 

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r1limited
Yea, I can see it in a pinch, but I just cant bite. I have never run with a crowd or buy into fads, not saying its a fad but I doubt Team Yamaha has a static balancer sitting on the bench and i have never seen one in the dunlop tents, just saying.
 

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peteinpa
This method is not a hack or inferior method of balancing.
 
It IS what the race teams use.
 
I put 85k miles of tires on a CBR1100XX using this method with no shakes, wobbles etc. up to 180 mph. It works.
 
The front IS more important than the rear, but do both anyway.
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r1limited
This method is not a hack or inferior method of balancing. 
It IS what the race teams use.
 
I put 85k miles of tires on a CBR1100XX using this method with no shakes, wobbles etc. up to 180 mph. It works.
 
The front IS more important than the rear, but do both anyway.
Not to argue, but I been around a lot of paddocks in a lot of years.  Never seen that in one f them.  Just saying 

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rhb
I don't want to feed the fire here, but it is important to note for anyone who has doubts, this is not a sub standard second class way to balance a motorcycle tire. For sure, everyone is entitled to "take it or leave it", but novice riders should take note this is a bonafide way to balance a motorcycle wheel.
 
One of many more professional videos using a commercial and expensive static wheel balancing stand. Same principle as one you can make yourself for a few bucks. :)
 

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r1limited
I bet Rossi's mech-a-nic does this :)

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rick
I've been changing my own tires and those of friends for many decades. I built a balancer stand with one adjustable side for width with 1.5" thick plywood uprights and bearings much like rhb's - though not as furniture quality pretty. Never has anyone complained of vibration or funny wear patterns and one of those friends has seen speeds up into the 140s on tires we've mounted for him.
 
Yeah, it would be more accurate to have them spin balanced. And yeah, maybe a low profile, stiff sidewalled, motorcycle radial will grow a wee little bit at great big speeds. But for most of us who keep speeds sane and, erm, mostly legal, a static balancer like this seems to work just fine.

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markstertt
I use the Pit Posse (?) static balancer stand, small and easy to stash...this method is more than adequate for motorcycles for reasons earlier stated and was also the way 100's of thousands of wheels and crankshafts were balanced in the days before spin balancing. Great for m/c wheels but dynamic balancing is much better for crankshafts for reasons rhb stated.
 
I always balance front and rear since it's so easy and because I watched a friends bikes rear wheel hop it's way down the road on a perfectly smooth freeway, when we got to our destination, his rear shocks were so hot you couldn't put your hand on them. It used to be said you only needed to do the front but not for me.
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rick
Have had good success with a couple of PitPosse tools. 
 
This is my homemade version. My shop is wall to wall stuff so things like this have to come apart and stashed out of the way when not in use. The bearings were meant to be on top of a router bit and were pretty cheap. Everything else was sorta sitting around waiting for a purpose. . 
 
That's a 190/50 mounted on a SuperDukeR rear wheel. Got lucky,  the Marc Parnes  adapter for my Aprilia's back wheel (single sided swinger, no rear axle) fit that wheel perfectly.
 
Been my experience that Bridgestones are really well balanced from the factory and that Japanese wheels always take more weights and more effort to mount a tire than European wheels. No hard science here, just an impression. KTMs have beautiful wheels and tires just seem to glide off and on.
Haven't done the FZ yet, but I dread doing totters for Kawasaki wheels. 
    
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