Grease Fitting WARNING! - Kawasaki Vulcan Forum : Vulcan Forums
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post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-14-2009, 01:57 PM Thread Starter
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Grease Fitting WARNING!

I am not trying to scare anyone. But in case you haven't looked under your bike recently, there are 3 little grease zerks on the rocker arm that connects the frame to your rear shock absorber. The rocker is made of cast aluminum.

Since these little fittings are the lowest point on the bike, if you hit a speed bump or bottom out in any way, you will probably rip at least one of them out of the casting. At this point there is no easy fix to the missing fitting because it probably took part of the casting with it. This is not a ride ending deal, but over time the grease will leak out and water will get in and eventually the shaft inside will probably start to squeak and may even sieze up.

Many riders I have spoken with recommend to replace these zerks before they get ripped out the hard way. You can buy M6-1.0 stainless steel socket head set screws that will replace these zerks. Just grease up the zerks in place, then remove them and screw in the set screws. Keep the old zerks so that when you need to re-grease, you can just screw them in. If it is already to late for your bike, join me in the joy of trying to re-tap the hole for an M8-1.25 set screw.

I hope this is helpful to everyone.

'07 VN900 Classic
Horsepower is an illusion.
Torque is the source of all good things.
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post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-14-2009, 02:37 PM
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just happened to me loading it in the truck last week.. i cussed a storm about the genius engineer who put it there.
just like i used to when you had to change the spark plugs on a late 90s chevy by removing the dog bone and rocking the engine forward to get back there.
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post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-14-2009, 03:11 PM
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Good post JP-
A good fix for those who have destroyed a 6mm zerk is to tap the hole with a 1/4-20 bottoming tap. A standard 1/4" zerk will now fit.
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post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-14-2009, 09:27 PM
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I believe most 900's are shipped with a minimal amount of grease. My dealer did not add any before delivery either so if you are performing your own maintenance, grease her up.

John
2007 900 Custom
Plasma Blue
Oxford, MI
VROC 25948
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post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-16-2009, 11:17 AM Thread Starter
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I actually crawled under the bike last night to do the set screw deal and decided to make a change. The threads seem to go all the way in so there is nothing for the screw to bottom out against. I have now switched to a M6 x 10mm long hex head bolt with lock washer. This allows the head to lock against the housing and hopefully not rattle out or in. Also, I found out that the casting is pretty thick and since the zerk was only about 5mm deep, I didn't loose all of my threads. I was able to just run a M6 tap in there to clean things up and then insert the bolt. No drilling thank God. That would have meant removing the rocker arm.

'07 VN900 Classic
Horsepower is an illusion.
Torque is the source of all good things.
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post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-20-2009, 07:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeep Pirate View Post
I actually crawled under the bike last night to do the set screw deal and decided to make a change. The threads seem to go all the way in so there is nothing for the screw to bottom out against. I have now switched to a M6 x 10mm long hex head bolt with lock washer. This allows the head to lock against the housing and hopefully not rattle out or in. Also, I found out that the casting is pretty thick and since the zerk was only about 5mm deep, I didn't loose all of my threads. I was able to just run a M6 tap in there to clean things up and then insert the bolt. No drilling thank God. That would have meant removing the rocker arm.
Jeep Pirate

I decided to look under mine this past weekend and sure enough, the fitting has been sheared off. My question is how did you get the rest of the original fitting out of the link? Did it unscrew for you? It would be a wonderful thing if I didn't have to remove the link to drill it out.
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post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-20-2009, 09:03 AM
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A "Screw Extractor" sometimes called an easy out. You just need to get the right size for the internal hole in the zerk. Hardware stores should have them, you just need a wrench or tee handle to put on shank of screw extractor to back out broken off piece.
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post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-20-2009, 10:53 AM
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Thanks, familiar with them but wasn't sure how effective it would be. There's not much room to work down there.
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post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-20-2009, 02:41 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sandman20 View Post
Thanks, familiar with them but wasn't sure how effective it would be. There's not much room to work down there.
Hey Sandman,
I just got around to checking in and saw your message. RS900C is correct. I would start with a small screw extractor (back-out tool). On mine, the threads weren't real tight and there is nothing to rust down there, so the fittings went in and out pretty easy. So hopefully the screw extractor will work without any real problems. In fact, the ease of the screw moving in and out was why I switched to hex cap screws from the original worm screw idea. I was worried the worm screws would vibrate themselves out... or even worse, vibrate in and damage the pivot shaft. Anyway, good luck. And if anyone finds the inept engineer who did this to our almost perfect bikes, let me know. I still want a word with him.

'07 VN900 Classic
Horsepower is an illusion.
Torque is the source of all good things.
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post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-20-2009, 04:02 PM
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Thankfully I heard of this "problem" a while ago and replaced the grease fittings with hex head bolts............ I urge everyone to do this mod .
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