Speed Wobble

I took my road bike out for a test run, first run since I acquired it a couple of months ago. When I get going around 35-40km/h i notice the bike to start to wobble. When I got back I noticed the back wheel is untrue, do you think this would account for most of the wobbling? Everything else seems perfect. Would tire pressure have any effect on it as well?

Well, that stuff won’t help it, any. It can come up from lots of reasons, as well. True the wheel first, and bump the tires up to proper/max pressure. Also, make sure the wheels are tensioned, the hubs are tight, the headset is adjusted and tightened, and make sure the frame/fork isn’t bent or twisted. Just the quick stuff that first came to mind. Also, make sure the wheels are centered in the dropouts.


Assuming 23 or 25 mm tires, 100 psi should be a decent starting point. Maybe 110 max. Eliminate one aspect at a time. And truing the wheel is a good place to start.

I checked the headset and it was tight, everything looks straight. I’m dropping the wheel off today to get fixed up.
the tires are 23mm. I think it says max is 110 on the sidewall

If you weigh over 180lbs then go for Max psi. Otherwise 100 is the better choice. Our roads are bumpy and that allows for a little softening of the ride and more contact with the road.

I will try that, the rear wheel had one spoke that was insanely loose, so hopefully this will fix it.

[quote=“RyanHutchinson”]I checked the headset and it was tight, everything looks straight. I’m dropping the wheel off today to get fixed up.
the tires are 23mm. I think it says max is 110 on the sidewall[/quote]

Just make sure it’s not too tight. If it binds even a bit, it can do this as well. Just pick up the front end and make sure it spins freely each way with no resistance. If it binds, it’s too tight. Then, jam on the front brake and rock the bike back and forth. Put your hand on the headset cups/bearing area when you do this. If it clunks/feels like it has play, it’s too loose. Gotta get that sweet in-between spot.

ok thanks, I’l check that out. I get my wheel back tomorrow.

A friend of mine bought a new bike last season that had bike brand tires on it. Same thing, speed wobble. New tires, wobble gone.

bike brand??

this has Michelin Axial Pro tires on it. I’ll keep it in mind though if I can’t get rid of it.

Bike tires are very small, so the slightest error in fabrication will cause a wobble.

Michelin Axial Pro? How old are those tires? Regardless, see how things go after you true the wheel before worry about replacing things. That is the likely culprit.

I doubt that it is the tire, knowing it is a Michelin.
If you are aware of our strict quality controls, sending a defect like that out the door is nearly impossible, but it does happen from time to time.
If it is, contact Michelin and they will replace it.

it is potentially quite old, the bike is a 2000 rocky mountain glide. they come with those tires stock, and the bike was only used for a few races, so they could very well be original. they do look to be in perfect shape.

Yeah, I think they may have stopped making those back in 2005 or 2006. If they are still in good shape great. But be aware that they generally do not wear well. They were meant to be fast and not long lifed. If you start getting flats, I would take them off quickly and get a more decent, long wearing tire. I like the Michelin Lithion 2 personally. Cost wise and durability it is hard to beat. For ultimate long life at an increased cost Conti Gatorskins.

Yeah they are pristine right now. I’ll see how many miles I get in on the road bike this year, I plan to do a fair amount this year, but mountain biking takes first priority most of the time.

thanks for the tire suggestions!

Test the wheel! Get back to us

Dying of suspense over here.

I’m dying to get it out for a run, but won’t be able to for a few days at least. I can mount it tonight and see that it’s true, but that won’t tell me anything really

put the wheel back on the bike, it runs perfectly true now, but it is more towards the left of the frame with it all the way down in the dropouts, is it normal for it to be off when seated all the way in? any bike I have had was centered when all the way in.

Not normal. Take it out and try it again.