How to identify a faulty ball racer / steering (handle bar) bearing

The handle bar or steering bearing / cone set or rather the ball racer is present in all of our motorcycle and bikes. This bearing and cone set is responsible for smooth steering / handle movement thus contributing to the overall handling of the bike.

However the bearings need periodical greasing and may need replacement if faulty.

How to locate or identify a faulty steering / handle bar bearing or ball racer / cone set ?

Most prominent syntom of a problematic cone set or ball racer bearing would the hard feeling of jammed steering / handle bar movement and sound (khat / kat) from the handle bar joints when hitting the front disc break hard or hitting a pothole in bad road. You may feel that something is lose in the handle bar setup of the bike.

Secondly when you open up the handle bar for periodical maintenance and greasing / lubrication, compare your ball racer with a new one of faulty one to figure out, if you need a replacement or not.

This article is applicable for most of our Indian bikes, namely,

  • Bajaj Pulsar (P220 DTS-Fi / P200 / P180 / P150 DTS-i)
  • Bajaj Avenger 200 / 220 DTS-i
  • TVS Apache RTR 160 / 180
  • Yamaha YZF-R15 / FZ-16 / Fazer
  • Hero Honda Hunk / eXtreme / CBZ / Karizma (ZMA) / ZMR
  • Honda Unicorn / Dazzler

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10 comments

  1. i have the honda dazzler .. in 2 years i have change conset for 3 years …which is best conset company for honda dazzler

    • SKF make. Go to SKF authorized distributor & ask them the conset bearings for HH Glamour. They are the perfect fit for Honda Dazzler & lot better than the stock ones

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  3. Hi, thanks for the explantion.

    My R15 v1.0, 2years old bike has the ball racer problem. I did not do any racing and roads are fine and I daily commute only 10 Km. Ran only 6000 Km in 2.2 years.Did all servicings as specifed , but still,had to face the problem and Kolkata Yamaha(Its own shop) always wants to replace with a new one than to repair, My question is, does this happen so early since mine is only 2.2 years old? and it costs nearly 3.2k INR.

    Thanks in advance.

  4. i too had the same experience since my p220 was making tat/kat sound on small pot holes on road (we have that kind of road in our city) . I refferd it to PBK the informed me , that there is play in the steering , and hence he tighten the big nut on the handle bar centre . . . . . Nd got it all clear . . .
    But after a mnth later the prblm was there again . . .
    And then so visited PBk for concern.
    This time they looked after the. Cone set in handle bar . . . Nd there were 2 ball bearing damaged
    got it replaced for 300 nd nw it all over . . .

  5. Dinesh Krishnan

    Hi guys, I just replaced my racer kit about 6 months ago. Now the same problem has emerged. Mechanic says there is a high chance that the cone set is damaged. Will the coneset available in SKF for R15 V2.0 ? Since the Yamaha spare is around 2000.

  6. i have pulsar 135 ls ,2009 model haven’t changed the stock conset yet. rode over 47660 kms. but once my fell down from a friend of mine (around 3 yrs back) and after that the above mentioned “tuck tuck” sound developed. would the conset damage had caused this? also while cornering at times i feel a little heavy on handles.if its the problem of conset please refer other conset manufacturer other than the stock bajaj ones.

  7. bro which company cone is better bajaj genuine or sfk

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