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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have 30k miles on my road rod, enjoy everything about the ride except the slow, parking lot type moves, the front end seems to be real heavy, not responsive, just not agile enough. Hard to explain,
but I feel that I could ride circles around this bike with my Ultra.
Is this just the way it is or can I improve the handeling in any way??

This is not a serious problem, I can live with it, just looking for suggestions that may have helped others with the same problem.
Tks.
 

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Can't say that I ever noticed a problem but I don't have an Ultra. Keep in mind that the Harley touring bikes have a shorter wheel base that the VROD and have a shorter turning radius. If your frame of reference is the Ultra and you are comparing the two, the Ultra will be easier to turn. Then again, the Ultra has seriously more weight to horse around.
 

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It may well be a function of the rake/steering angle.Low speed handling was always the bane of the V Rods 34 deg rake. Newer bikes with the 240 tire had some of the rake pulled out to quicken up the handling. The HD tourers with their forks behind the steering stem have very good low speed handling to begin with.
Ed
 

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It may well be a function of the rake/steering angle.Low speed handling was always the bane of the V Rods 34 deg rake. Newer bikes with the 240 tire had some of the rake pulled out to quicken up the handling. The HD tourers with their forks behind the steering stem have very good low speed handling to begin with.
Ed
The newer bikes with 240 rear tires do have 2° less triple clamp angle than the original frame but the steering angle is the same. This change actually increased trail (from 3.9” to 4.5”) to improve high speed stability but low speed handling is slower not quicker.
 

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When you hang a heavy fairing on the front of a bike the slow speed handling will suffer. A BMW 1984 K-100RS is only a 549 lb bike fully fueled, and the unfaired same year K-100 is only 15 lbs lighter than the fully faired RS, but the difference is night and day at low speed. That Road Glide fairing is a heavy piece hung way out on the front of an already heavy bike. This is why I have settled on a simple windshield for my R when I would really like a fairing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for your replies, they all make sense! I am wondering if I should stiffen the front end, perhaps a Progressive kit, a heavier oil or a combination of both. With the added weight, it probably should be done anyway, if it doesn't help my slow handeling problem, it would make the bike more stable.

I do have 440's on the rear that made a nice improvement. I kind of neglected the front, needs to be corrected.
 

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I was thinking if I ever bult another one I'd try the front end from an R model.
Pat - you know mine has a R front end! Works great! Joe
 

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Thanks for your replies, they all make sense! I am wondering if I should stiffen the front end, perhaps a Progressive kit, a heavier oil or a combination of both. With the added weight, it probably should be done anyway, if it doesn't help my slow handeling problem, it would make the bike more stable.

I do have 440's on the rear that made a nice improvement. I kind of neglected the front, needs to be corrected.
I have stock length 440's on the rear of one of mine and Progressives on the front and it all works and handles fine.

Pat - You know mine has a R front end! Works great! Joe
Joe I did notice that a while back. I thought an R front end with some gloss black powder coating by our friend Tyson sure would look good. I'm wondering if you fit it to a non R model how the different rake angle would effect things though.
 

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I had thought about same thing, but since the rake built into the newer trees is about the same as the R(+2) and the steering angle (neck rake) is 4 deg. less on the R, I doubted that putting the R front end on the standard would help much. Maybe someone knows for sure.
 

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Not a day goes by that I don't think about assaulting my D models frame with my cutting and welding equipment. With the hydro formed tubing and neck configuration there's not a simple and neat way to do it though and I don't want it to look like a hack job. I'm still considering the option of making a complete front upper frame segment but my energy level is not what it was when I was a young man and I'm reluctant to go for it. Most of my riding is at speeds where the rake is OK anyway but it sure would be way more fun on the "Dragon" if the steering was quicker.
 
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