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Wheel spacing..again, it is offset about 3/8"

Wheels, hubs and tires
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panster
Posts: 58
Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2004 2:07 am

Wheel spacing..again, it is offset about 3/8"

#1

Post by panster » Mon Nov 15, 2004 7:30 pm

Hi all,
I recently asked a question about the centering of Hydra wheels, I thought I had it beat..but. What I've got is:
Stone stock Hydra front end, all Harley, complete and assembled correctly. When I fit my wheel: Star hub and genuine Pan rim, built to spec in manual (11/64" rim to flange). It is offset about 3/8" to the non brake side? I realise this might not make a huge difference handling wise I
just want to know if it is correct, or should I take my complete front end to the shop and have them centre the rim in place ?
If anyone gets a chance to get to their front wheel could they have a check to see if it is central to the sliders.
Thanks guys,
J.



Plain
Posts: 80
Joined: Mon Nov 22, 2004 11:18 pm

Re: Wheel spacing..again.

#2

Post by Plain » Fri Nov 19, 2004 7:59 pm

Panster:

I see that no one has answered this yet. I also note that you posted an inquiry in another thread asking for answers. Let me take a swing at it. Maybe it will stir up some of the people that know the answer to respond.

First, I have no Hydra front ends around to draw answers. It may get me run off this board, but I am a chopper man, in my heart and soul. Everything that I have ever learned or know to this point indicates that on a bike the front wheel should be dead center of the forks. Engine mass is centered in the frame. Neck is centered in the same line. Triple trees built to keep the same line. If where the rubber meets the road is off center, then to me the bike is going to handle strangely and differently. And, even though the axle is supposedly rigid, the physics of the issue would seem to me to be that the shock load delivered by a wheel offset from center would deliver more to the fork on the near side. That tends to make for a "twitchy" front end. One of the huge arguments that I have with the current fascination for extemely wide rear tires is that now we are seeing engines and transmissions offset to one side on these bikes. This has got to affect handling. I am currently getting ready to install a newly built springer on a 59 Pan. Front wheel is simple spool, no brake. My springer builder also built the wheel spacers, and he carried them out to the third decimal place when he cut them to length. Front wheel, dead center.

So where are the rest of you out there? Off those bar stools and give this man the skinny before I lead him down the path of ruin and damnation. If he takes his front end into a thousand pieces let it be on your heads.

Plain BSM

panster
Posts: 58
Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2004 2:07 am

Re: Wheel spacing..again.

#3

Post by panster » Sat Nov 20, 2004 1:04 am

Plain,
thanks for the reply, I've been given some interesting info from someone who knows.
Apparently if your rim width is 4,1/16" the 11/64" is correct, different widths add or subtract from 11/64" as necessary. This, (now the controversial bit), puts your wheels inline with each other, but OFFSET to the centre line of the bike, (Hydra). If this was to compensate for weight distribution or something I don't know.
I agree about the wiiide tyre bikes, I've seen guys' hanging to one side to go straight! and riding hands off the bars? Forget it ! I love chops too, Hank Young and Zero engineering are my style favourites, but anything oldschool is it!
Regarding your springer, and as a final thought from me about the spacing topic, check out the front end on a modern H-D springer especially with a 21" front wheel, it is offset so far in the rockers it looks terrible, the fender mounts are very obviously different lengths, also, if you see a Softtail H-D from underneath, (as if hanging from its front wheel), the rear wheel is way offset from centre too !!
You figure it out, my head aches.
J.

Toymaster
Posts: 29
Joined: Mon May 01, 2006 11:59 am

Re: Wheel spacing..again.

#4

Post by Toymaster » Sat Nov 20, 2004 3:26 am

I measured my 62 FLH stock glide front end, and its 8" between the fender mount 'flats' on the fork legs, and the center of the rim [between 2 spokes] is right at 4"[just halfway] this is exact within say a 1/16" or so..
Completely stock/original as far as I know [have owned it since 1976..]

Plain
Posts: 80
Joined: Mon Nov 22, 2004 11:18 pm

Re: Wheel spacing..again.

#5

Post by Plain » Sat Nov 20, 2004 5:30 pm

"Panster - my front wheel is centered in the forks. "

From DuoDaves last post in Piston Broke - just in case you missed it.

Plain
Posts: 80
Joined: Mon Nov 22, 2004 11:18 pm

Re: Wheel spacing..again.

#6

Post by Plain » Sun Nov 21, 2004 5:15 pm

Panster:

I knew no good would come of this. Now you have me questioning what I thought I have known for thirty years, which is front wheel dead center of the forks. The thought of an offset front wheel just makes me itch all over. I'll be scratching like a rat the rest of the day. I do not think that I agree with the "wheels inline with each other, but OFFSET with the centre line of the bike". I could be wrong. It is not unusual for me to wallow in ignorance, nor for that matter to find that a cherished belief that I have held for decades is false.

It is my intention to research this so that I can quit scratching. So far though, you have two stock bikes with the front wheel centered in the forks and one person "in the know" saying that it should be off center. This is going to make the blood boil in my brain. Tell me. When your front wheel is offset 3/8" is it exactly centered on your rear wheel?

I just went out to the shop and measured a stock 59 swing arm with stock rim, hub, brake drum. spacers and rim. The center of the tire is dead center of the front axle housing portion of the swing arm. Service manual shows rear swing arm dimensions are concentric around the centerline and swing arm spacers are the same dimension on each side. So, unless I have some mulyuked spacers in my rear wheel, the rear wheel is dead center of the swing arm and therefore dead center of the centerline of the frame. If the wheel was moved 3/8" to either side I would have some serious rear drive chain alignment issues. I cannot swear to swing arms, or rear wheels, but to the best of my knowledge frames from '58 to '65 were all dimensionally the same. If your rear wheel is offset 3/8" from the centerline of the swing arm this is a new one on me. Back to the scratching.

Plain

panster
Posts: 58
Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2004 2:07 am

Re: Wheel spacing..again.

#7

Post by panster » Sun Nov 21, 2004 6:41 pm

Plain,
firstly, all my info and confusion only pertains to rigid frame Pans, the Duos' might well be different ! That 3/8" offset was a result of the rim being trued dead centre to hub, the width of the rim, (H-D), is 41/8", I now Know that it should have been the 11/64" spacing with a 41/16" width, what I still don't know is, how much offset ( if indeed any ), a stock Hydra would have left the factory with !
With your chain alaignment comment, don't forget that the sprocket etc could stay where they are, and the rim be trued "over" either way ! But, Like it or not, Late H-Ds have wheels that run offset to the centreline of the bike.
All I want to know is did any older models, i.e. Hydraglides.
Thanks,
And I wish now that I'd kept quiet
J.

Plain
Posts: 80
Joined: Mon Nov 22, 2004 11:18 pm

Re: Wheel spacing..again.

#8

Post by Plain » Sun Nov 21, 2004 8:29 pm

Don't even wish that you had kept quiet. Before this is all over we will both learn something. Pondering your last post about lacing wheels to true center or offset has given me something else to think about and consider. I believe that there is more here than meets my bloodshot eye.

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