modification to steering geometry is not
in itself a reason for rejection.
Before failing a machine for excessively stiff steering, check
that any adjustable steering damper is released. The tester
may at his discretion consider that a road test is necessary
to establish whether stability or control is adversely affected.
If the damper is released during the test the vehicle presenter
must be informed (Reference Introduction Item 5).
It is important to distinguish between play in the head bearings
and that in the forks, it may be necessary to use the assistant
to apply the brake whilst the machine is pushed so that a proper
assessment can be made by hand and eye.
that the steering head bearings are adjusted correctly and are
in good condition as follows:
1. Inspect for tightness and roughness by turning the steering
from lock to lock
a. with the front wheel on the ground for on a turning plate)
to check the lower bearing, and
b. with the machine raised so that the front wheel is clear
of the ground to check the upper bearing.
2. Inspect for free play as follows;
a. apply the front brake and push the handlebars forward, or
b. for lightweight machines, with the aid of an assistant raise
the front wheel clear of the ground, apply the front brake,
and lift the front of the front wheel, it may be necessary to
support the centre of the machine if it does not have a suitable
c. for machines with centre hub steering:
with the front wheel held between your legs rock the steering
side to side taking up the play. Assess the free play in the
Steering movement excessively stiff, 'notchy' or rough (see
a. with weight on the lower bearing,
b. with the wheel raised.
2. Excessive free play in the head bearings or any steering
linkage (see information column).