Kawasaki Vulcan Forum banner

1 - 20 of 35 Posts

·
Registered
2001 kawasaki vulcan 750
Joined
·
46 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I was riding last night y noticed that my back wheel was making a noise. The best way I can describe it is a howling kinda low pitch sound just wondering if this is normal or should I be concerned?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
240 Posts
Is it constant? I don’t think it should be making any noise at all but need some more detail to understand better. Does it feel like the rear shell is getting good power when you accelerate or does it slip at all? Or does pressing the rear brake make the sound change at all? You could always throw it up on the center stand and spin the wheel by hand to see if you can hear anything grinding.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
3,087 Posts
Yes you should be concerned. Noises are omens of things to come. This could be the tire, driveshaft bearing, wheel bearing, rear end gear noise, bevel gears, etc... Does it make the noise only under load or when you let up on the throttle? Does it make the noise when you lean or ride upright? If only when you lean, to what side. If you have a bike lift, put the bike in the air and then use straps to secure the bike. If no lift, get the rear wheel up off the ground higher than just the center stand. Perhaps a wide piece of wood under the stand. Block the front wheel and put a wire tie around the front brake handle. Get a automotive stethoscope from Harbor Freight for five bucks. Also buy a wheel chock for the front wheel if you don’t have one. In the next step, for safety sake, you must have someone help you. Then start the bike and put it in gear. Bring the bike up to the speed and rpm where you hear the noise. If you don’t hear anything, take a good look at the tire. If you do hear it, use the stethoscope to locate origin. If you only hear it under load, might not hear it on the stand. Here is a parts diagram to show where the driveshaft, bevel gears, and rear end bearings are located so you know where to listen. Needless to say, be careful doing this check and make sure the bike is secure. Good luck.


 

·
Registered
Joined
·
46 Posts
A low pitched hum or howl is probably your diff. Check the oil in that thing ASAP.

No, it is not normal.
Yes, you should be concerned.

If that back tire locks up on you by surprise (probably at highway speed) I'd bet it would wreck your whole day.
 

·
Registered
2001 kawasaki vulcan 750
Joined
·
46 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
So after I posted this I did put it on the stand and check everything out to see if anything didn't look right around the back wheel. Everything looks good from there. The brakes was making a noise for about a day or two I'm thinking because I got caught in a bad downpour and my road or my driveway rather was very boggy and I figured it might have gotten something inside. It was making the noise at highway speed it's got plenty of power and hasn't slipped any that I've noticed. I never really open it up but today I did give it more gas than usual nothing seemed off there. But the weird thing is that I didn't hear it today when I took it down the road
 

·
Registered
2001 kawasaki vulcan 750
Joined
·
46 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Yes you should be concerned. Noises are omens of things to come. This could be the tire, driveshaft bearing, wheel bearing, rear end gear noise, bevel gears, etc... Does it make the noise only under load or when you let up on the throttle? Does it make the noise when you lean or ride upright? If only when you lean, to what side. If you have a bike lift, put the bike in the air and then use straps to secure the bike. If no lift, get the rear wheel up off the ground higher than just the center stand. Perhaps a wide piece of wood under the stand. Block the front wheel and put a wire tie around the front brake handle. Get a automotive stethoscope from Harbor Freight for five bucks. Also buy a wheel chock for the front wheel if you don’t have one. In the next step, for safety sake, you must have someone help you. Then start the bike and put it in gear. Bring the bike up to the speed and rpm where you hear the noise. If you don’t hear anything, take a good look at the tire. If you do hear it, use the stethoscope to locate origin. If you only hear it under load, might not hear it on the stand. Here is a parts diagram to show where the driveshaft, bevel gears, and rear end bearings are located so you know where to listen. Needless to say, be careful doing this check and make sure the bike is secure. Good luck.


O wow. Would I have to replace all of that at once or just some of it that looks pretty expensive
 

·
Registered
2001 kawasaki vulcan 750
Joined
·
46 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Another thing I don't understand is it's got right under 11,000 miles on it and it's been very well taken care of. The guy never dogged it out and neither have I. I know things just wear out but at 11,000 miles and 11,000 easy miles at that. I think if it's all of what y'all say might be wrong then I should just park it and kinda try to save more damage then when I get the extra money just have it fixed
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
3,087 Posts
Didn’t know your mileage when posting my previous opinion. With such low mileage it is unlikely that one of the bearings have worn out, unless it suffered from low lubrication, as stated from Kawasaki Brad. Look for anything loose on the bike that might resonate at speed. Also, with the lower mileage, would take a close look at the tires.

If you find the rear end fluid very low, it is possible that the seal went bad and allowed the gear oil to leak into the swing arm.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
240 Posts
One thing that you absolutely have checked on a 750 are the rear splines, this is why I asked in my previous post if there was any slipping in the rear wheel. It’s a pretty established fact that Kawasaki did not properly lube the final drives on these bikes coining out of the factory, most specifically for 2000-2006 models. The rear part of the final drive moves with the suspension and has some play in it, this gives the opportunity for wear if not properly lubed.

My bike is a 2005, I bought it in 2018 and when I finally got around to checking the splines it was obvious that neither Kawasaki or the PO touched the rear splines. Here’s what mine looked like. Thankfully not worn down but rust was present
 

Attachments

·
Registered
2001 kawasaki vulcan 750
Joined
·
46 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
These bikes are definitely different from any others I've owned. It's either been belt or chain we only have one motercycle mechanic in town I've never worked on a shaft driven bike. Is this something that I should have someone with more knowledge fix than try to tackle it myself?
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
3,087 Posts
If you have the tools and a place to work on the bike, you can do this yourself. Also, you have the benefit of all the members here to help you through any snags. Here is a link to a factory repair manual to show you the procedure. Already gave you a couple of OEM parts supplier links in other posts if anything needs replacement.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
240 Posts
Here is the procedure, without knowing your technical capability or what tools you have available to you I can’t say whether or not you should have a pro do it or not. I had it done because I don’t have a garage of my own. My mechanic only charged me for a hours worth of labor if that helps.
At a high level, you are basically removing the back wheel, once that’s done you need to remove the 4 bolts that hold on the final drive gear case and the whole assembly will slide off, once off apply moly grease liberally (actually it’s a few teaspoons worth) and then reassembly.

 

·
Registered
2001 kawasaki vulcan 750
Joined
·
46 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
That actually sounds pretty easy to do and yes my back tire is pretty worn down so I really try to be easy and ride as little as possible but at the moment it's usually my primary transportation I have the tire on order it's supposed to be here two days ago
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
240 Posts
If you are planning on changing the tire than that’s about 75% of the job.
As Tourer mentioned, you have the knowledge of the forum to relay on as well as the other forum link I sent. I joined that one before I found this forum and can honestly say that it has kept my bike on the road.
 

·
Registered
2001 kawasaki vulcan 750
Joined
·
46 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
I plan on joining that one too. Honestly the vulcan is the most comfortable bike I've been on. And I'm actually surprised with the power it has being a 750. I've always been on the gsxr or cbr's and I'm really satisfied with the performance of it my friends are also. It needs a few things that's basically cosmetic like the gauge cluster and my tank is dented where it fell over in the trailer
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
240 Posts
Parts availability is still pretty good for this bike, accessories on the other hand are a little more difficult to get a hold of. It’s my first and only bike so I don’t have much to compare it to but I know I definitely enjoy it. I’m debating if I should brave the cold today just to get a few miles in the seat. I haven’t been out nearly as much as I’d like to be.
 

·
Registered
2001 kawasaki vulcan 750
Joined
·
46 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
It's pretty chilly here too. I'm in south Carolina near charleston area and I really love riding but when it's your main transportation the cold is not a friend. That and rain. I have a truck but at the moment that's in the shop I'm doing a LS swap it's time for a better power plant.
 

·
Registered
2001 kawasaki vulcan 750
Joined
·
46 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
Well I've been on the road sa few hours today and I have not heard the noise. I'm still concerned about it though and I'm having a closer look at everything in the morning. I will keep updating y'all as I go.
 
1 - 20 of 35 Posts
Top