4th gear at 80mph for 30+ miles - Kawasaki Vulcan Forum : Vulcan Forums
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-28-2010, 10:23 AM Thread Starter
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Unhappy 4th gear at 80mph for 30+ miles

Oop's...what have I done to my motor???? I did not realize this until I heard the engine clanging over my ipod. Sounds like valve train noise. Have been running full synthetic in it, have 12,800 miles. Had to drive it home about 400 miles, but at low speeds. Still has about the same power and shifts fine but noise at higher rpm's. Am going to change the oil this weekend it looks pretty black. Any idea's, maybe just needs to valve's adjusted?
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-28-2010, 11:46 AM
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You might want to start by adjusting the volumen on your ipod. You must have been deep into the song because I can feel the high rev right away on mine. Maybe just by doing the oil change the noise will come down a bit. Your valve svc is recommended at 15k so its just around the corner for you. Good luck.

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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-28-2010, 12:53 PM
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You're not running a Scootworks pulley, I haven't figured the tire but if it's a direct swap for the OEM then you're speedo is reporting high anyways and your actual rpm is going to be about 4800 rpm. Now, I've cruised down the highway all day between 80-90 rpm in 4 and 5th depending on passing. Me thinks you're just at oil change time and Valve check time but I don't think you'll have hurt the engine a full 2 grand+ before rev limiter.

I've run home before and gotten to my get off the highway point and found out I was in 4th more than once, that would essentially be the same as what you did with passing traffic in between.
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-28-2010, 12:55 PM
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I'm with MrClean.

You may have exercised the valves a little more than normal, but you were well within the capabilities of the engine.

Change the oil, and maybe check the valves, but your engine will be just fine.

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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-28-2010, 08:41 PM
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I agree with MrClean. You are hearing phantom noise because of what you "think" you did wrong......... Do the maintenance, ignore the noises, ride like hell, and have fun like you stole it......
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-28-2010, 09:13 PM
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This was on a VN800 @ 15k miles - similar engine.
Try checking the front exhaust pipe. Take the heat shield off and tap along it with a rubber hammer. A metalic clatter is indicative of a cracked inner pipe, usually at the first bend out of the head. It fooled me. It sounded like a rod knock. I tore the motor down but didn't find any bearing clearances out of spec or damaged. Put it back together and still had a knock. Never suspected the pipe until I found a few posts about it. Took a close look down the end. Sure enough, a break all the way around the inner pipe. Different pipe - no more knock.

Good luck.
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-29-2010, 12:19 AM
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Well you definitely knocked the carbon out of her. Have the valve clearances checked and adjusted because you are that close anyway. Then change the oil. It is my understanding that on these engines the valves grow or lengthen with age so I would tend to think they would get quieter but it can't hurt to check them anyway. Spark plug intervals are every 7500, if you haven't changed them yet do it now too. The smaller engines can take the revs, ever ride a VN750? You can twist that engine until it screams for a lawyer hehe. They had a 10000 rpm redline!

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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-29-2010, 02:19 AM
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This is a little different than kraig205's problem. But the other day I took the Kawi out for a ride. I rode about 10 miles and decided to stop at home and pick up my fishing gear to take along and when I started the bike back up, I heard a strange noise, kind of like a chirping sound which got louder with revs, even while in neutral. I had a friend listen to it to see where the noise was coming from and he thought it was around the primary cover. He thought it sounded like a clutch sticking. We talked to a mechanic friend and he asked if I was using Amsoil, said it is known to cause trouble like that. The thing is that I had been running Castrol GTX 10W-40W oil since getting my bike 2 years ago and after reading all the posts about oils and how Amsoil MC oil is the best, etc., I decided to switch to Amsoil about 1800 miles ago (Against my husband's better judgement needless to say). He has used Castrol for years in his bikes and his 1986 Cavalcade has over 110,000 miles on it and runs like a new one. DUH...Dumb me! So I am going to drain the Amsoil out and change oil again using Castrol and hope that solves the problem. Anyone else out there had any problems like this after using Amsoil? Just curious.

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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-29-2010, 07:37 AM
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To the original question, I concur with the no damage done. I'm guessing we all have done it, or close to it. Indicated 70 for me a couple of times. As I don't ride highways that often, or exceed 70 when I do, I was just going with the flow.

Although I was with a crew the other day at almost WOT, now that was flow !

To the hi-jacker, my very trusted mechanic dropped Amsoil after a few years, as it has it's own issues. Always recognize that due to it's multi-tiered marketing, there are alot of promoters out there, selling the kool-aide. I use the Mobil1 Racing4T, over the last 8,000 miles.

BTW, same mechanic related a number of years ago the Michelin's seem to be prone to sidewall blow-outs, more so than other brands. Seems that everytime I hear a friend talk about a "tire blew-up", Bingo !!

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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-29-2010, 08:58 AM
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If you ran your motor for 30-minutes at redline minus 1000 RPMs (probably 2000 in your case), and it was damaged, you did not cause the problem, you DETECTED the problem. If something evil is afoot in your crankcase, it was there before you started listening to your I-thingy.
This is especially true if you note no unusual power loss.

If you're at oil change time plus or minus a half a thousand, I'd think about doing that. I dunno if I'd recommend kicking the valve check to the left by three thousand miles though, since if you have the dealer do it, it's going to set you back by a figure well north of $500. It won't hurt the bike if you do though...just your wallet.
In fact I think I'd change the oil and put a few more miles on the bike BEFORE doing the valve clearance check. If you pissed off a bearing, or some other little metal piece/part with your music inspired adventure, then you might pay for a valve inspection only to have your motor die 200 miles later from an unrelated cause.
Just my guess....
It's hard to say without hearing what's going on under your gas tank!

Good Luck!

"Those who beat their swords into plowshares will plow for those who do not."
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