Short term fix for "notch"? - It works...
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Veni, Vidi, Posti
. . 2008 Blue MP3 400. . di Peluria Orso .... 1993 Kawasaki Vulcan 500 ....... 2013 Honda NC700XD; 2017 Versys X300
Joined: 02 Jun 2008
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Location: Milledgeville, GA
Wed May 18, 2011 3:27 pm quote
Gonzo,
To clarify your procedure on the Gonzo Tweek the wheel on side not worked on was touching the ground but the side you were working on the wheel was elevated off the ground held there with the tilt lock?

Does this rotate the upper or lower or both bearing races?

What did you use to jack the MP3 up?

Dirt and I plan to try this at the gathering and will have to carry what tools we need with us to the gathering.
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Wed May 18, 2011 5:59 pm quote
old as dirt wrote:
sounds like this weekend we are going to be doing this during our weekend gathering in the smokies, as a maintenance item for folks to see.


Edit : Gonzo has this holding up for you?
OAD, I haven't done a lot of miles but it feels fine, and I can't detect the notch @ about 30deg from straight ahead. I suspect just getting the rollers on the left and right sides out of sync with each other makes a big difference. I guess that alone should reduce the notch feeling by half (whatever that means) because you would feel only one at a time. It would be really difficult to get them in sync again once you've moved one set.

Gonzo
(Tweakmeister)
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2009 MP3 500 - The Iridescent Chameleon, 2007 Yamaha Vino 125, 2016 Indian Scout Sixty
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Fri May 20, 2011 5:02 pm quote
Looks like we're going to do this at "The Gathering" tomorrow night.

And we suggest "The Gonzo Twist" as the name for this procedure, since we're twisting the bearings...
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Sat May 21, 2011 12:13 am quote
Fuzzy wrote:
Gonzo,
To clarify your procedure on the Gonzo Tweek the wheel on side not worked on was touching the ground but the side you were working on the wheel was elevated off the ground held there with the tilt lock?

Does this rotate the upper or lower or both bearing races?

What did you use to jack the MP3 up?

Dirt and I plan to try this at the gathering and will have to carry what tools we need with us to the gathering.
Sorry Fuzzy, I didn't see your questions.

Yes the side I was working on was off the ground. I jacked up the bike then released and re-set the tilt so that one wheel was on the ground.

I rotated only the lower sets of bearings.

I jacked up the bike with my harley lift plus wooden frame

For tools, I used a pin punch for the locknuts. That was it.

Gonzo
Veni, Vidi, Posti
. . 2008 Blue MP3 400. . di Peluria Orso .... 1993 Kawasaki Vulcan 500 ....... 2013 Honda NC700XD; 2017 Versys X300
Joined: 02 Jun 2008
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Location: Milledgeville, GA
Mon May 23, 2011 3:53 pm quote
Thanks Gonzo. We rode over 10 hours a day so no energy for this effort during the gathering. It was all we could manage to hoist a beer, an MP3 was out of the question.

I will do it the first chance I get and report back. Going to be busy for a few weeks.
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mp3 250ie
Joined: 06 Aug 2011
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Location: uk
Sat Aug 06, 2011 11:49 am quote
gonzo fix
Hi there.
I've had the notch for some time now and had almost resigned myself to 400 bill. However I came across the tweak and I've managed to get all the front of my mp3 off with no issues.
My question is, do I release both nuts at the top of each side and can I do this without moving the 2 tubes that go though the middle of each tube?
also, when retightening them have I understood it right that the bottom nut is just hand tightened, then backed off 110 degrees? Also how tight does the top nut have to be?

Many thanks..
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Sun Aug 07, 2011 1:22 am quote
Hi gevans3342

Firstly, no, you don't need to remove the hydraulic tubes. You back off both nuts until you can see the bearing rollers as shown further up this thread. I found that I couldn't back off the top nut all the way, then the bottom nut. I had to do them together - the hydraulic tube bracket got in the way.

There is a new technique for tightening the nuts, but you need the special Piaggio tools. They are essentially a LH and RH C-spanner with a special bracket and 1/2" square drive. It's so you can use a torque wrench to tighten the nuts. I haven't used it, but I'm not a fan.

Here's the Piaggio technical note:
http://manuals.wotmeworry.org.uk/useful%20info/Steering%20Bearing%20Adjustment%202010.pdf

I do this:

Tighten the nuts until you get close to closing up all clearance on the bearing. Then tighten the lower nut a bit at a time with a punch, and lift the fork leg in-between tightenings to see if you can still feel clearance. You have to have the wheel off the ground, and lift firmly. You should feel a clunk. Keep doing this (tighten, feel) until the clearance vanishes. Then back off the nut a bit, feel the clearance, then lock down the TOP nut. Feel again. You may have to re-tighten the bottom, then top nuts to get almost all the clearance out. The idea is to have no clearance, and no pre-load on the bearing.

It's a fiddly method, but I couldn't use the 110-deg one, because I could never feel when the bearings were "snugged up"

I don't know how tight the top nut has to be. I tap it into place with a punch and a hammer until it feels firm. It's there to stop the bottom one from undoing itself, so it needs to be sufficiently tight so you need to use a punch or c-spanner to undo it. Sorry for the inexact nature of that comment!

Gonzo


PS: Also, you should do one side at a time.
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Gilera Fuoco
Joined: 07 Nov 2010
Posts: 94
Location: Woy Woy NSW
Sun Aug 07, 2011 3:36 am quote
Has anyone bought these bearings from a bearing supplier? Was wondering if anyone has the part number other than the Piaggio number. Our distributor in Australia only understands one word - markup, so would like to price them from a bearing distributor. Is there any difference between 250, 400, 500?
Veni, Vidi, Posti
Neutrino MP3 492.7 AK, 2013 Moto Guzzi Norge
Joined: 29 Mar 2008
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Location: Kingston, Tennessee, Tn
Sun Aug 07, 2011 6:43 am quote
plbuckland wrote:
Has anyone bought these bearings from a bearing supplier? Was wondering if anyone has the part number other than the Piaggio number. Our distributor in Australia only understands one word - markup, so would like to price them from a bearing distributor. Is there any difference between 250, 400, 500?
all the mp's use the same bearings
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mp3 250ie
Joined: 06 Aug 2011
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Location: uk
Sun Aug 07, 2011 1:32 pm quote
thanks
Gonzob

You are a star. I adjusted one side using your instructions, but could not move the nuts at all on the other side. After much banging and swearing I gave up up put all the plastics back. Took for a quick test ride and the notch has gone!! Don't know if just lucky, but it's like having a new bike!!
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Sun Aug 07, 2011 2:06 pm quote
Re: thanks
gevans3342 wrote:
Gonzob

You are a star. I adjusted one side using your instructions, but could not move the nuts at all on the other side. After much banging and swearing I gave up up put all the plastics back. Took for a quick test ride and the notch has gone!! Don't know if just lucky, but it's like having a new bike!!
Great! It may be that the one side you did was the one with the problems, however, I'd still try to do the other side too - even if only to set the clearance on the bearings. You could feel for clearance without undoing the nuts...

Maybe the nuts are seized on - use some penetrene or similar, and try again.

Have you greased the bearings? After setting the pre-load, greasing is the next most important thing to do. Using the "grease bolts" that member mjm50cal made is a great way of doing it.

Here's an old post that shows the method:

http://modernvespa.com/forum/topic44951?postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=82

Gonzo
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Gilera Fuoco
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Posts: 94
Location: Woy Woy NSW
Sun Aug 07, 2011 7:53 pm quote
Hey Gonzo
I have just done your 'tweak' on mine, and havent as yet ridden it but it feels fine in the workshop. Must emphasise how important greasing is. My bearings looked dry, and only received my drilled bolts last week but when I greased it a lot of moisture came out the bottom on one side.

But will ask again, does anyone have a Timken/SKF/NTN/other number for these bearings? I dont need them right now but would like to do some research before I am due to replace them as to whether any better solution is available. Surely someone has replaced them and would have the part number from the old cup and cone.
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2008 mp3 250 ie
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Location: North Bay CA
Sun Aug 07, 2011 9:59 pm quote
I kinda understand what is going on, but i just got an MP3 250 and am taking it into the dealer to have them look at it. Is there anyway to avoid this problem all together.. the MP3 i got only have 14 miles on it and don't want to spend an extra money in the future on an issue i can handle now... Thanks!!!
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Mon Aug 08, 2011 3:13 am quote
The problem with the bearings is that they are not very hard so they are easily damaged. The newer ones are supposed to be better, but if you have an 08 machine it's unlikely. I may be wrong on that.

Anyway, there's two things to do:
1. make sure the adjustment is right (there are various methods, but they all aim to get the preload and clearance to zero)
2. Make sure the bearings are lubricated. Again, there's a few methods - pressure packs, grease bolts, pulling it all apart, etc.

As you say, the sooner you do it the better. The bike may be fine without doing any work, but you'll never know....

Gonzo
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Mp3 500
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Sat Sep 03, 2011 9:12 am quote
Ok, me and my buddy, who, unlike me, is a mechanic, marched out this morning to tame the notch, but something is unclear after we looked at it.

We do not understand how you can access the upper bearings without removing body panels, but no one mentions the need to do that.
Certainly, if you did this within an hour, you did not remove any tupperware.

It did not seem that jacking one wheel uo woukd expose that area, but perhaps I am wrong.

As an aside to this question. If we grabbed the two wheels and worked them back and forth, there was some play that seemed to be coming form the left hand tie rod. Any idea if that woukd contribute to the " loose" feeling in steering I have had of late?
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Sat Sep 03, 2011 9:18 am quote
Rob In Denver wrote:
Ok, me and my buddy, who, unlike me, is a mechanic, marched out this morning to tame the notch, but something is unclear after we looked at it.

We do not understand how you can access the upper bearings without removing body panels, but no one mentions the need to do that.
Certainly, if you did this within an hour, you did not remove any tupperware.

It did not seem that jacking one wheel uo woukd expose that area, but perhaps I am wrong.

As an aside to this question. If we grabbed the two wheels and worked them back and forth, there was some play that seemed to be coming form the left hand tie rod. Any idea if that woukd contribute to the " loose" feeling in steering I have had of late?
Bob,
It take 10 mins to get both from panels off.
Molto Verboso
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Sat Sep 03, 2011 11:42 am quote
Rob In Denver wrote:
As an aside to this question. If we grabbed the two wheels and worked them back and forth, there was some play that seemed to be coming form the left hand tie rod. Any idea if that woukd contribute to the " loose" feeling in steering I have had of late?
You better believe it could. There should not be any looseness there.
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Mp3 500
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Sat Sep 03, 2011 12:52 pm quote
Thanks for the input. Just did not want to take off body panels if we did not realize there was a way around it.
Not sure what to do about that tie rod.
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Gilera Fuoco
Joined: 07 Nov 2010
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Location: Woy Woy NSW
Sat Sep 03, 2011 1:17 pm quote
Quote:
We do not understand how you can access the upper bearings without removing body panels, but no one mentions the need to do that.
Certainly, if you did this within an hour, you did not remove any tupperware.
It is only the bottom bearings that have the load on them and therefore get the 'notch' problem. No need to rotate the top bearings, only the bottom.
Veni, Vidi, Posti
Neutrino MP3 492.7 AK, 2013 Moto Guzzi Norge
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Sat Sep 03, 2011 3:04 pm quote
and its not the bearing that gets the notch , its the bearing race.
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Mp3 500
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Sat Sep 03, 2011 4:50 pm quote
Clearly, we are clueless.
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Sun Sep 04, 2011 2:02 am quote
Dear Rob Clueless.

Don't be so hard on yourself!

Shortish explanation:

The lower steering bearings are tapered roller bearings, and they take the main load on the front end. The rollers are sandwiched between two races. The races are not hard enough and the curved rollers can leave a dent in the surface if the locking nuts are tightened too much. The dent is in the straight ahead position because that's where the steering spends most of its time. There are 21 (I think) rollers in each bearing, so there are 21 dents in the surfaces of the bearing races.

What the tweak does is move the bearing cage (which contains the rollers) to get the rollers mid-way between the notches (approx) with the steering straight ahead. In this way, you get a "clean" bearing surface to use. The notch will still be there, but not in the straight-ahead position.

You need to remove the side tupperware panels (and the one below the lights to get the side ones off). You lift one wheel off the deck at a time to be able to check the free-play. You lift the wheel up and down. The rest of the instructions are above in this thread with photos.

If you have play sideways, there may be another problem - difficult to determine from your info so far.

Good luck

Gonzo
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Mp3 500
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Sun Sep 04, 2011 8:38 pm quote
Thamks Gonzo, we will try again tomorrow. I understand the premise. Just dim on the how to!
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Mp3 500
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Location: Denver Colorado
Mon Sep 05, 2011 7:45 pm quote
Second go at it was successful, the bike seems like its old self again.
The biggest issue I had was how to get the last body panel off. Did not know the nature of the tabs holding it on and did not want to break it. Finally understood that it slid forward toward the front of the bike....hiw are you suppose to know these things?
My friend was quick at the actual adjustment, and all seems well at the moment!
Thanks all, for the help.
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Mp3 500
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Mon Sep 05, 2011 7:47 pm quote
ooops, double posting!
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MP3 500
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Tue Sep 06, 2011 6:32 am quote
Rob In Denver wrote:
how are you suppose to know these things?
Thanks all, for the help.
It's talked about on here in just about every thread that talks about taking the panels off
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Mp3 500
Joined: 14 Mar 2008
Posts: 2302
Location: Denver Colorado
Tue Sep 06, 2011 2:24 pm quote
I looked, really. Sure it was here somewhere, but could not find it.
Even gave up and googled it, nothing.
At some point I will be painting panels, so if I cant find instructions then, i intend to make some.
Molto Verboso
Honda CTX 700D
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Tue Sep 06, 2011 3:27 pm quote
plbuckland wrote:
Hey Gonzo
I have just done your 'tweak' on mine, and havent as yet ridden it but it feels fine in the workshop. Must emphasise how important greasing is. My bearings looked dry, and only received my drilled bolts last week but when I greased it a lot of moisture came out the bottom on one side.

But will ask again, does anyone have a Timken/SKF/NTN/other number for these bearings? I dont need them right now but would like to do some research before I am due to replace them as to whether any better solution is available. Surely someone has replaced them and would have the part number from the old cup and cone.
If you will go to this topic "The "NOTCH" after just 2000 miles following repair" the numbers are all there.
Hooked
mp3 250 2007
Joined: 23 Oct 2008
Posts: 208

Sun Apr 08, 2012 9:30 am quote
Those of you that did this on the 250, do you need to remove any plastics up front? If so would you mind briefly describing what is necessary?

I am going to take on the challenge of the gonzo tweak this week. and want my ducks in a row so that i don't spend 3 hours figuring out how to remove the plastics(especially if i don't need to!).

THANKS ALL
Hooked
Joined: 11 May 2008
Posts: 206
Location: Roseville, CA
Sun Apr 08, 2012 3:26 pm quote
miles
not sure when the 'notch' should appear, but will bookmark this thread for the occasion...am at 19k now with no notch on the 500...
Hooked
mp3 250 2007
Joined: 23 Oct 2008
Posts: 208

Mon Apr 09, 2012 6:24 pm quote
so...do you need to remove the plastics to do this on a 250?
Veni, Vidi, Posti
. . 2008 Blue MP3 400. . di Peluria Orso .... 1993 Kawasaki Vulcan 500 ....... 2013 Honda NC700XD; 2017 Versys X300
Joined: 02 Jun 2008
Posts: 6127
Location: Milledgeville, GA
Tue Apr 10, 2012 12:53 am quote
805g wrote:
so...do you need to remove the plastics to do this on a 250?
Yes.
Hooked
mp3 250 2007
Joined: 23 Oct 2008
Posts: 208

Tue Apr 10, 2012 5:46 am quote
Got ask the plastics off...now what type of tool do I use to loosen the nuts on the top of the steering stem?
Veni, Vidi, Posti
. . 2008 Blue MP3 400. . di Peluria Orso .... 1993 Kawasaki Vulcan 500 ....... 2013 Honda NC700XD; 2017 Versys X300
Joined: 02 Jun 2008
Posts: 6127
Location: Milledgeville, GA
Tue Apr 10, 2012 3:34 pm quote
A punch.
Molto Verboso
MP3 500
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Location: Utah
Tue Apr 10, 2012 4:04 pm quote


tnIRECM350.gif
Not this Drift/Hammer

611f85.jpg
This is more like it.

Hooked
mp3 250 2007
Joined: 23 Oct 2008
Posts: 208

Tue Apr 10, 2012 6:53 pm quote
^^^is that synonymous with 'flat head screw driver'???
Hooked
mp3 250 2007
Joined: 23 Oct 2008
Posts: 208

Tue Apr 10, 2012 8:54 pm quote
just finished my left side. NOTCH IS GONE!!!! WOOT WOOT!

My left lower bearing was bone dry. I will try and find procedures on how to grease the bearings without lowing the entire stem center.

YOU GUYS ARE THE BEST FOR PUTTING UP WITH MY BS. and yes i was screaming that. best forum ever.
Molto Verboso
MP3 500
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Posts: 1290
Location: Utah
Tue Apr 10, 2012 9:17 pm quote
Use this little doohickey on your grease gun.
http://www.amazon.com/Lincoln-Lubrication-5803-Grease-Needle/dp/B0002SR6XE

31zeoHBaCJL._SL500_AA300_.jpg

Veni, Vidi, Posti
Neutrino MP3 492.7 AK, 2013 Moto Guzzi Norge
Joined: 29 Mar 2008
Posts: 20976
Location: Kingston, Tennessee, Tn
Wed Apr 11, 2012 5:22 am quote
805g wrote:
just finished my left side. NOTCH IS GONE!!!! WOOT WOOT!

My left lower bearing was bone dry. I will try and find procedures on how to grease the bearings without lowing the entire stem center.

YOU GUYS ARE THE BEST FOR PUTTING UP WITH MY BS. and yes i was screaming that. best forum ever.
mjm50cal had some grease bolts made up for this. pm him and see if he has any left.
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2009 MP3 400
Joined: 27 Jul 2008
Posts: 2004
Location: Saratoga, N.Y.
Wed Apr 11, 2012 5:40 am quote
805g wrote:
^^^is that synonymous with 'flat head screw driver'???
No, a drift is flat on the bottom, not a blade at all. It can be a specially designed tool with a knurled handle and maybe a taper in the shaft, or just a piece of bar stock. If I had to hit a bearing nut with a drift, I'd use a brass one, so as not to damage the nut. (Brass drifts are also good for locking rings on fuel tanks, since brass won't make a spark.)

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