Swinging arm bearings going, belt rubbing? - Kawasaki Vulcan Forum : Vulcan Forums
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-22-2012, 11:42 AM Thread Starter
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Swinging arm bearings going, belt rubbing?

My bike is a 2009 Voyager with 35,000 miles on her and I suspect the swinging arm bearings are going. I have had the wheel alignment checked and we have reset the drive belt to be in the middle of the pulleys. After riding for a few miles the belt is pulling over to the left and rubbing against the outer edge of the pulley. There does seem to be a little play in the swing arm when the bike is raised with the rear wheel off the ground. Does anyone have any advice before I strip the entire back end off and take out the swinging arm?
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-22-2012, 05:31 PM
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You said you reset the belt to be in the middle of the pulley, That's great but need to ask "Did you use the alignment marks above the axel to get both sides the same?


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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-22-2012, 08:24 PM
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Neil, I believe the only way to know if the bearings are worn, would be to check it when the bike is on the ground. Because this is the normal riding position of the arm where the most of the wear would be.

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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-23-2012, 03:11 AM Thread Starter
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I have checked alignment marks myself and with this with two different dealers. Only one suggested bearings when he had it lifted on the bench. It did appear to have a little sideways movement to me when he showed me. I don't want to spend a lot of money on mechanic's labour so I'll break the bike down myself.
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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-23-2012, 06:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neil Newnham View Post
My bike is a 2009 Voyager with 35,000 miles on her and I suspect the swinging arm bearings are going. I have had the wheel alignment checked and we have reset the drive belt to be in the middle of the pulleys. After riding for a few miles the belt is pulling over to the left and rubbing against the outer edge of the pulley. There does seem to be a little play in the swing arm when the bike is raised with the rear wheel off the ground. Does anyone have any advice before I strip the entire back end off and take out the swinging arm?
I questioned the need for lubrication of the swing arm bearings in another post a while ago. The manual calls for them to be lubricated at 15,000 miles/24 months. This of course requires taking half the motorcycle apart, which IMHO is ridiculous for a routine maintenance procedure. The consensus at that time was that the bearings are not normally subject to much wear and that it would be just as good to wait until they need to be replaced rather than going through the bother to lubricate them.

Anyway, did you ever lubricate yours as recommended? Please let us know what you find when you take your bike apart and inspect the bearings. Thanks,

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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-23-2012, 07:20 AM Thread Starter
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I have not lubricated them and strongly suspect it has not been done under the service schedule as I would have noticed that labour charge!

I have checked the belt movement on the ground also, spending an hour messing about with a dealer doing the same thing. It is not until I put a few miles on her that it makes its move over to the left after being move to the middle.

Oh well, one lives and learns an expensive lesson and I must pay more attention to the service manual now I have one.

I will post details of what I find.

Thanks for the input.
Neil

Last edited by Neil Newnham; 11-23-2012 at 07:27 AM.
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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-23-2012, 09:22 AM
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I would recommend using a wheel alignment tool to align the wheel and not rely on the tick marks on the swingarm.

When I serviced my swingarm bearings the lubricant that was there was clean. Sure there was minimum amount of lubricant, but it looked sufficient and there was no wear on any of the parts.

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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-23-2012, 09:48 AM
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Have you inspected the drive belt? I would think the belt is the weakest link with your bike problem.
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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-23-2012, 10:39 AM Thread Starter
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The belt looks fine but a little polished on the left had side as a result of the rubbing. I am going to take the back wheel out and the belt off, check everything and then decide on taking the swinging arm out.
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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-23-2012, 07:16 PM
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If your going to take the belt off you might be able to reverse it and give it a try. Not sure if the belt is one directional.
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