Odd Noise front wheel - Kawasaki Vulcan Forum : Vulcan Forums
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 03-19-2012, 09:43 AM Thread Starter
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Odd Noise front wheel

I have a 2009 VN900B with 5K and I just recently noticed an odd noise from the front wheel when I was letting the bike roll down a slight hill prior to starting the engine. I could hear a what sounded like a rubbing noise at each rotation of the wheel - not a hiss or scraping noise but a low level (not sure how to describe it exactly) mild honking noise. I took it on the road and while going approx. 20 mph I turned the engine off and coasted - the noise was still there but obviously at a faster pace. I applied the front brake and the noise was still there along with the noise you would hear from the brake pads be applied to the rotor. Could it be a front wheel bearing (assuming there are bearings on the front wheel)? Thanks for any suggestion.
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 03-19-2012, 11:57 AM
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Disk brakes?

My Voyager does that as did my Honda Shadow Sabre. When you release brake, there is nothing to pull the caliper and brake pad away from the disk, so they often stay in contact but with no pressure. You may be hearing a slight scrape of the pad against the disk, which is nothing to worry about.

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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 03-19-2012, 12:16 PM Thread Starter
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Yes - disk brakes. Seems to be the noise would cease while the front brake is applied? I could understand the pad not releasing but why would it continue as the brake is applied?
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 03-19-2012, 07:13 PM
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Wouldn't think bearings would be bad at 5,000,I didn't replace mine till about 42,000...they were still good but was going on a really long trip and had the bearings,tubes and tires changed. I would pull the caliper off and check the brake pads for any issues(i.e. cracks,breaks or something caught up between pads and rotor.Lightly scuff pads with some fine sandpaper then check the rotor for deep grooves or obvious issues and reinstall.
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 03-19-2012, 07:26 PM Thread Starter
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I'm always thinking the worse case! I agree - 5K is hardly any miles for bearings to wear out. I'll do a detailed inspection of the brake assembly this weekend. I do live on a long gravel drive - maybe a pebble popped up and got wedged. Thanks for your input.
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 03-19-2012, 07:43 PM
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Post back with what you find out,good luck!
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 03-20-2012, 12:12 AM
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it's your front brake. mine does the same thing. with mine it's not consistent, which means it's either one of the pads not seating properly in the caliper, or one of the pistons hanging up. Since I've never noticed anything remotely resembling uneven braking, I'm assuming it's just a pad slopping around a little. In a nutshell, I ignore the sound as long as my braking performance continues to be even and consistent

I suppose it could also be a warped rotor, which could make locking the front brake easier. You could pull it and have it spun to check its runout, or do it trailer park style: set it on a true surface and run feeler gauges around its edge to see if one area might be higher than another.

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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-18-2012, 09:18 AM Thread Starter
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Strange Noise

I know my hearing is going bad in my left ear but I finally located the source. Turns out the noise is coming from the front belt pulley area. (got down on my
hands and knees and had the wife push the bike!). Sorry I miss directed everyone before - thinking it was from the front wheel area. Anyway - just got back from a 400 mile trip and it appears no worse for wear - I'll have the shop take a look in a couple of weeks - putting on new tires. I'll let you know what they find - it's still under warranty. Thanks
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-19-2012, 05:11 AM
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My front brake makes a minor hissing noise some times and the belt makes a rubbing noise when slowing down. They come and go. My bike has only 2500 miles on it and has done if from new.
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-21-2012, 08:04 PM Thread Starter
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Sorry it took me so long to post my results. Turns out the VN900s just make weird noises from time to time. You get a new bike and then you start listening to every strange noise that pops up and thinking the worse case scenario. Later after reading others experience similar noises along the way you finally relax and just enjoy the ride.
All is well with the VN900!
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