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Steering Column - Handlbars Need Aligned

 
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pajeanka
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Joined: 01 Dec 2007
Posts: 74
Location: Fargo, ND
2007 Genuine Blur, Hubby - 2007 Kymco People 250

PostPosted: Mon Jun 16, 2008 4:52 pm    Post subject: Steering Column - Handlbars Need Aligned Reply with quote

Okay - this is almost embarrassing to ask, but I know there are great people here and you'll understand. I have been riding our new Buddy 125 for two months (in between snow storms and tornadoes). My hubby just got his motorcycle permit the end of last week and got on the scooter for the first time this weekend. After his first ride he comes home and says, "Do you know the front wheel and the handle bars are not lined up on the scooter?"
I thought he was nuts until went out and looked for myself. He was right - if you set the front wheel straight in line with the scooter then the handlebars are turned in a small amount on the left side.
Anybody else have this experience? The question is - can we correct this ourselves or do we have to take it in. Is there just an adjustment bolt to correct this or is there a spline at the top of the steering column that will require much more disassembly & maneuvering? Our hesitation in taking it in is that we don't have a true scooter shop here in Fargo.
(Oh, in case you are wondering how I rode the scooter and didn't notice - I am 5'1" and wear a full face helmet. The headset and handle bars are never in my field of view on the scooter unless I look down. So I was simply directing the scooter down the road based on what was in front of me. My spouse is 6'2" and the headset and handle bars ARE in his field of view thus it was a distraction to his navigating. Crazy - huh?)


Last edited by pajeanka on Tue Jul 15, 2008 10:57 am; edited 1 time in total
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Kurzer
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Joined: 12 Mar 2007
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Location: Beaverton, OR.
Stealth 125

PostPosted: Mon Jun 16, 2008 5:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Is the front wheel out of alignment or the front fender? I ask because the fender can easily un-snap from any one of the four clips it uses to stay aligned.

The handlebars sit in a groove on the steering column, so there's really no way to align the bars with the wheel, if they are misaligned, something is wrong. Before you go back to the dealer, I would remove the front cover and loosen the steering tension bolt, then jimmy the bars left and right while pushing down on them. If they weren't set into the groove for whatever reason, this will fix that.

If they don't "click" into the groove or you can't move them left and right (i.e., they're already in the alignment groove) then tighten the tension bolt and call your dealer, you may need a new handlebar set.

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pajeanka
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Location: Fargo, ND
2007 Genuine Blur, Hubby - 2007 Kymco People 250

PostPosted: Mon Jun 16, 2008 6:13 pm    Post subject: Steering Tension Bolt Location Reply with quote

Thanks for your help. Can you tell us specifically where the steering tension bolt is located? Is it identified in the Buddy service manual - what page? Will certainly give this a try before taking the scooter in for service.
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pajeanka
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Location: Fargo, ND
2007 Genuine Blur, Hubby - 2007 Kymco People 250

PostPosted: Mon Jun 16, 2008 6:16 pm    Post subject: Not the Fender Reply with quote

Oh, by the way . . . the fender on the scooter is fine. Everything is in place with that.
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Eazy
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 16, 2008 6:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It sounds to me you have something bent,

When i get to my office I'll make you a diagram showing where the bolt is.

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jmazza
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 16, 2008 7:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mine are like that too- just very slightly off to the left. The only way I noticed was the headlight, which illuminates a little more into the center of the road than it probably should.

Interesting info about this "groove." I'd never heard of that. I know where the bolt is (if you take off the front cover and look inside it will be pretty apparent- it's not very easy to get to), but like I said it's such a slight issue I've just never taken the time to deal with it.
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Eazy
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 16, 2008 11:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's the bolt in question.

It's a 14mm on each side.

Turn the column all the way to the right, put a box end wrench on the bolt (you'll have to be sneaky), then turn all the way to the left and put a socket wrench with an extension and a socket on the other side and loosen.

You have to loosen quite a bit for it to move the first time, and then when you try to put it back together it will move to the bitter end.

Edit thats actually on the back of the steering shaft, not the front as this picture shows it.

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Kurzer
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 17, 2008 3:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Eazy, I was going to have to pull my front panel and snap a pic then upload, you saved me a ton of time Wink

When you're loosening up the nut, be sure to have two wrenches otherwise it will just spin.

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pajeanka
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Location: Fargo, ND
2007 Genuine Blur, Hubby - 2007 Kymco People 250

PostPosted: Tue Jun 17, 2008 11:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Like we said - there's great people here on MB! Wink We really appreciate the diagram and description.
Okay - so once we get to the base of the handle bars it seems like a doable adjustment. BUT what all has to be removed besides the front panel to get to the steering column adjustment bolt? Thanks for your patience with a couple of scooter newbies. Cool
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jmazza
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 17, 2008 11:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

pajeanka wrote:
BUT what all has to be removed besides the front panel to get to the steering column adjustment bolt? Thanks for your patience with a couple of scooter newbies. Cool


Just the front panel. And you'll have to push some wires/cables out of the way because the bolt will be way in the back.

Let us know how it goes! Maybe I'll try to straighten mine!
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tunseeker1
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2008 Black Buddy 125/ 2008 Blue Buddy 125

PostPosted: Tue Jun 17, 2008 1:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I hate to say it but if you don't have the ability to fix this withoout asking on here I would take it into the dealership.

I see some things that jump out at me in this post.

It appears that the owners are new riders who have never worked on a motorcycle.

The owners have never taken apart this model of scooter before.

The owners have no personal knowledge of the mechanicals of this scooter to use as reference in repairing the scooter.

The part that is in question is a major part of the safety equipment os the scooter. If now reassembled correctly it could lead to total loss of steering control of the scooter which could result in loss of life or limb.

When you take all of these things into consideration I would recommend taking it into the dealer for service. The scooter should be under warrenty, but if it isn't it would be cheaper to go in and have it looked at then it would be to have a problem with fixing it and have to take it in half done to be completed.

Just my $0.02
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r0sa
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Location: Austin, TX
07 Buddy 125

PostPosted: Tue Jun 17, 2008 3:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

im with tunseeker.

i have the same problem with the misaligned wheel/handlebars and that's because i laid my scoot down, im not sure if the wheel is bent or whatever but i plan on taking it to the dealer sometime, its located in downtown and there is no way i can transport the scoot in my little benz, so i gotta borrow a friends truck of some sort
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andgosun
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Location: Pryor Oklahoma
'07 Red Buddy 125

PostPosted: Wed Jun 18, 2008 12:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I noticed mine off to the right. So I stood in front of the scooter and put my feet on each side of the front wheel to hold it and started putting some pressure on the opposite side. After quite a bit of pressure the handlebar moved. I did this 2 or 3 times and it is now straight with the wheel tracking. While riding you can look down and see if there is equal amounts of fairing exposed on each side. I will get inside and tighten the handlebar some more though.
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jmazza
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'07 Buddy Italia - The ORIGINAL!!

PostPosted: Wed Jun 18, 2008 12:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

so is there a groove or not? It's fully adjustable, like a bicycle?

(I know, I should just check mine out myself!!!)
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andgosun
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 18, 2008 12:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

mine is adjustable and no groove. The tightness of the bolt in the clamp determines how easily the handlebars move. if it is too easy to adjust you better take it to a dealer or for the do i yourselfer, tighten the bolt!
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Eazy
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 18, 2008 12:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

jmazza wrote:
so is there a groove or not? It's fully adjustable, like a bicycle?

(I know, I should just check mine out myself!!!)


There is a groove.

Maybe older ones don't have it but I have an '07 italia in my shop right now tha proves there is a groove.

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Kurzer
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 18, 2008 1:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, the groove has a little slack in it but not much, if the bars are moving all over, the bars are above the groove and need to be seated correctly to avoid potential catostrphic failure.

I also have to agree with tunseeker1, this is pretty straight forward, if there's any question at all you should take the Buddy to your local dealer.

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anndelise
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Joined: 17 Jun 2008
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Location: Bellingham WA
Buddy 125cc

PostPosted: Tue Jul 15, 2008 2:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Updates please.

pajeanka, did ya'll figure it out or did you have to take it into the dealer?
jmazza, did you ever straighten yours?

after my crash today, i noticed the scoot was doing a bit of soft sliding. I checked it just now before putting it away for the day, sure enough, if the handlebars are ligned up, the tire is turning slightly to the right. (which explains why left turns didn't feel comfy at all, but the right turns didn't give the sliding feeling)

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jmazza
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 15, 2008 3:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

anndelise wrote:
Updates please.

pajeanka, did ya'll figure it out or did you have to take it into the dealer?
jmazza, did you ever straighten yours?

after my crash today, i noticed the scoot was doing a bit of soft sliding. I checked it just now before putting it away for the day, sure enough, if the handlebars are ligned up, the tire is turning slightly to the right. (which explains why left turns didn't feel comfy at all, but the right turns didn't give the sliding feeling)


I haven't messed with mine, no. It's not bad enough that I really notice. I can only tell by the headlight beam and when I really give it a good look. I'm afraid I'll make it worse or not tighten it up enough (it's a very hard nut to get to) so I haven't attempted it yet!
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anndelise
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Buddy 125cc

PostPosted: Tue Jul 15, 2008 3:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

jmazza wrote:
I haven't messed with mine, no. It's not bad enough that I really notice. I can only tell by the headlight beam and when I really give it a good look. I'm afraid I'll make it worse or not tighten it up enough (it's a very hard nut to get to) so I haven't attempted it yet!

thanks for that update jmazza
I know i'll be taking it into the dealer as I'm not yet ready to delve into the buddy yet (still hoping to find a decent manual), i'm just worried about the cost. Like, if it IS just a misalignment, then that would be easy and inexpensive to fix. But if it's something like a bent fork, even slightly bent, that will cost more money/labor/time/etc.

Sigh, why do they all have to be closed on Mondays. Makes me wait a whole almost 12 hours before I can even talk to someone. Crying or Very sad

Laughing

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Jake
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Buddy 125 (the green one)

PostPosted: Tue Jul 15, 2008 7:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

They either need to be aligned, or they need alignment. They for sure don't need aligned.
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pajeanka
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Location: Fargo, ND
2007 Genuine Blur, Hubby - 2007 Kymco People 250

PostPosted: Tue Jul 15, 2008 10:53 am    Post subject: Steering column - handle bar alignment completed Reply with quote

Sorry all that I haven't gotten back to this post sooner. I couple of weekends ago I did address this matter on my '06 Buddy 125. It was simply a matter of loosening the steering column bolt, adjusting (turning) the handlebars to where they were aligned with the front wheel, and re tightening the steering column bolt. This adjustment has been fine every since (I've checked it a couple of times). It's nice to have your headlight straight in front of you at night.
Because of the advice of a fellow scooter here on MB, I had hesitated on doing this repair because this is our first summer on scooters. But when I checked with our authorized Genuine repair shop (no longer selling scooters, they do small engine repairs - lawn mowers, snowblowers, etc), they were less sure than me about how to correct the issue. I have successfully done several upgrades and maintenance on the scooter on my own through the info provided here on MB so I decided to attempt the alignment and it was not difficult on a 2006 Buddy.
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anndelise
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 15, 2008 1:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

thank you pajeanka for the update
that gives me hope that it'll be a simple thing to fix

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Point37
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PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2019 12:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i just noticed this on my scooter...slight misalignment from the headlight to the front wheel...pulled the front cover and loosened the bolt all the way and there is definitely a groove cause there isn't really any adjustment...i tried to torque it over to the side a little to realign but it didn't work...i'll probably just leave it as is since it's not too bad
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