I read somewhere (another forum) that checking and greasing the steering head bearings was unneccessary for the first several maintenance intervals, and the person who posted this opinion on another forum said that this procedure was simply included in each service interval as a way for the dealers to charge more money for the services (idea being that they did extra work which was not necessarily needed.)
Here's the problem I have with that concept - given the dynamics associated with riding a motorcycle, any motorcycle, it makes sense to ensure that your fluid levels are correct, fasteners are tightened to factory-prescribed tolerances, and every possible thing is copacetic before you drive out onto the highway and blast down the road at some illegal speed on a machine built by fallible individuals, serviced by people who can make mistakes, and subject to stresses unique to its design and purpose.
Having said that, believe it or not, at my 1K mile service, the Tech forgot to tighten the steering head bearings after servicing them. It was about 50 miles later when I got a wobble at 55 mph that scared the heck out of me. I took the bike back to the Dealer, who promptly fixed the issue, admitted fault, and apologized with a $50 gift card that I used to help buy some winter riding gloves from their apparel section.
The point of all of this babble?
No matter how much I want to believe that I can just pay The Man and be confident in the service at any dealership or indie, I am quickly realizing that anyone who owns a bike had better be prepared to have the skills to perform basic fluid changes and simple preventative maintenance checks and operations.
I am therefore reading as many forums, and watching demonstrative videos on Youtube, as I can, buying a tool here and there when I happen to roll by Sears and have a few extra bucks in my pocket, picked up a multi-meter which I have no idea (yet) how to use, and have both the mechanical and electrical service manuals for my bike on their way in the mail.
I decided when I signed the papers for this bike back in Spring that this would be both a hobby and a commuting solution in the Northern VA area (where riding a motorcycle makes sense in rush hour, lane-restricted traffic arteries) and I am just going to chalk up the routine maintenance as part of that entire experience. I want reliability and longevity out of my bike, and whether I planned for it or not, the bragging rights associated with having some direct hands-on responsibility for that high mileage to come will be part of the overall experience for me.
No more wobbles for me 50 miles after a routine fluid change and PM interval!
That's the style!
Last edited by City Chicken; 12-08-2012 at 08:05 AM.