Kawasaki Vulcan Forum banner

1 - 20 of 29 Posts

Registered
Joined
26 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
https://youtu.be/TPjTQCvAVYg

Weird noise in the 2006 Vulcan 900 Classic... While riding sounds like rubbing, rolling of metal.,? Not loud especially and performance seems fine.

I've never owned a Vulcan but none of my other bikes made this sound.

Had the front drive sprocket cover off today and checked that.. all seems good. 馃馃. Any guesses?
 

Registered
Joined
250 Posts
From listening to your video a few times, I'm hearing what sounds like your rear brake pads scuffing along the rotor. I'm discounting the thump-thumping as background noise. Since you kept aiming the camera towards the engine, I'm guessing you're hearing or "feeling" the noise in that area?

How much material is left on the rear brake pads?

Have you done an oil change recently? If not, it might be time for one. But when you do, try to drain the oil into some kind of open pan so you can look at it closely. Look for anything that looks like glitter or metal particles in the oil. A little bit of fine stuff floating is pretty normal. Bigger pieces that sink are definitely bad.

Since you have a method to lift the rear tire, try giving it a good shake side to side with it off the ground. Not enough to tip the bike, but enough to check for play or slop in the rear wheel bearings. you should have no noticeable play in the wheel to axle area.

These are just some general points to look for, and not a complete list, but it's a starting point...
 

Registered
Joined
26 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
From listening to your video a few times, I'm hearing what sounds like your rear brake pads scuffing along the rotor. I'm discounting the thump-thumping as background noise. Since you kept aiming the camera towards the engine, I'm guessing you're hearing or "feeling" the noise in that area?

How much material is left on the rear brake pads?

Have you done an oil change recently? If not, it might be time for one. But when you do, try to drain the oil into some kind of open pan so you can look at it closely. Look for anything that looks like glitter or metal particles in the oil. A little bit of fine stuff floating is pretty normal. Bigger pieces that sink are definitely bad.

Since you have a method to lift the rear tire, try giving it a good shake side to side with it off the ground. Not enough to tip the bike, but enough to check for play or slop in the rear wheel bearings. you should have no noticeable play in the wheel to axle area.

These are just some general points to look for, and not a complete list, but it's a starting point...
Hey.. thanks for the comment. Yeah I originally suspected the front pulley but after getting down and close to it, is as you said I hear and feel it in the engine area.

I just changed the oil but didn't think to inspect the old stuff for debris. It was very old and I suspect the previous owner neglected it. (I just picked this bike up.) I haven't checked the brake material but I will. (It just had the safety done in April. )

As for play in the rear axel, is worth a look and I will. ... But as I ride and as I had her jacked up here... It seems to be coming from the rear jug. Its only heard as the wheel turns... Its not like I can rev in neutral or clutch and create it... So that's weird.

Again thanks for the comments I'll follow up.
 

Registered
Joined
26 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
From listening to your video a few times, I'm hearing what sounds like your rear brake pads scuffing along the rotor. I'm discounting the thump-thumping as background noise.
No no.... That thump-thumping what I'm hearing coming from the engine area! 馃槵 Just reading your post again more closely.... Its not background noise. Something sounds like it's rolling around in there...
 

Registered
Joined
250 Posts
Before I go any further, with this new information... My advice is to NOT ride the bike until we determine the cause of this noise.

Since the bike was in neutral when you were spinning the tire, it's most likely not in the engine itself. It is beginning to sound like a bearing issue inside the transmission. Not 100% sure on that yet, but it's beginning to look that way. A trans bearing locking up or giving out could very likely lock your rear wheel up. You can imagine the rest. Another possibility is a rear wheel bearing, again, not good if it locks up.

Since I wear both hats at various times....
Shop mechanic says absolutely no riding the bike until the cause of the noise is determined and repaired.
Home mechanic says no riding the bike more than up and down the block for troubleshooting purposes, listening to noises, etc. But be ready in case something gives out and causes a major issue.

Next step mechanically is to isolate the engine/trans from the rest of the driveline. Basically, take off the belt/chain. Check the rear wheel alone, then turn the drive sprocket. If you still have noise at one or the other, You're getting closer to the cause. Also try shaking the drive sprocket up and down and in and out. Basically, shake, wiggle, push, pull any piece designed to move in every way possible. Let me know about any play on the pieces, especially areas like the drive sprocket or rear wheel.

I wish I had better news, but there is still hope. A trans repair is definitely something that can be done at home if you have the patience, time, and place to do it.

One other question, do you have a repair manual for the bike? If not, get one. You can usually download them free from manualslib in PDF format.
 

Registered
Joined
26 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Before I go any further, with this new information... My advice is to NOT ride the bike until we determine the cause of this noise.

Since the bike was in neutral when you were spinning the tire, it's most likely not in the engine itself. It is beginning to sound like a bearing issue inside the transmission. Not 100% sure on that yet, but it's beginning to look that way. A trans bearing locking up or giving out could very likely lock your rear wheel up. You can imagine the rest. Another possibility is a rear wheel bearing, again, not good if it locks up.

Since I wear both hats at various times....
Shop mechanic says absolutely no riding the bike until the cause of the noise is determined and repaired.
Home mechanic says no riding the bike more than up and down the block for troubleshooting purposes, listening to noises, etc. But be ready in case something gives out and causes a major issue.

Next step mechanically is to isolate the engine/trans from the rest of the driveline. Basically, take off the belt/chain. Check the rear wheel alone, then turn the drive sprocket. If you still have noise at one or the other, You're getting closer to the cause. Also try shaking the drive sprocket up and down and in and out. Basically, shake, wiggle, push, pull any piece designed to move in every way possible. Let me know about any play on the pieces, especially areas like the drive sprocket or rear wheel.

I wish I had better news, but there is still hope. A trans repair is definitely something that can be done at home if you have the patience, time, and place to do it.

One other question, do you have a repair manual for the bike? If not, get one. You can usually download them free from manualslib in PDF format.
I had a bad feeling. And yes I have the downloaded repair manual.

I'll report back.
 

Registered
Joined
26 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Before I go any further, with this new information... My advice is to NOT ride the bike until we determine the cause of this noise.

Since the bike was in neutral when you were spinning the tire, it's most likely not in the engine itself. It is beginning to sound like a bearing issue inside the transmission. Not 100% sure on that yet, but it's beginning to look that way. A trans bearing locking up or giving out could very likely lock your rear wheel up. You can imagine the rest. Another possibility is a rear wheel bearing, again, not good if it locks up.

Since I wear both hats at various times....
Shop mechanic says absolutely no riding the bike until the cause of the noise is determined and repaired.
Home mechanic says no riding the bike more than up and down the block for troubleshooting purposes, listening to noises, etc. But be ready in case something gives out and causes a major issue.

Next step mechanically is to isolate the engine/trans from the rest of the driveline. Basically, take off the belt/chain. Check the rear wheel alone, then turn the drive sprocket. If you still have noise at one or the other, You're getting closer to the cause. Also try shaking the drive sprocket up and down and in and out. Basically, shake, wiggle, push, pull any piece designed to move in every way possible. Let me know about any play on the pieces, especially areas like the drive sprocket or rear wheel.

I wish I had better news, but there is still hope. A trans repair is definitely something that can be done at home if you have the patience, time, and place to do it.

One other question, do you have a repair manual for the bike? If not, get one. You can usually download them free from manualslib in PDF format.
Here is the latest.... Without the belt on... No noise? A bit of play in the pulley.. is this the problem??

https://youtu.be/nAsGvdM1Yvg

https://youtu.be/BP12xBFRL9Y

I sure appreciate the comments this far.. thanks.
 

Registered
Joined
250 Posts
After watching your videos, here's my opinion...

The rear wheel seems okay. The small hiss sound from the brakes is normal. It looked like it rolled nice and smooth, so I would look elsewhere...

The drive sprocket worries me some. It looked like you had somewhere around 1/8" play in/out. The rotational play (how far you can turn the sprocket back and forth before you feel it connect) looks like it has some pretty substantial wear.

Check your manual for tolerances. I suspect the in/out play is well above spec, and if you grab the sprocket and try to go directly up and down, you should have no play that you can feel.

This is looking to be the bearings that support the shaft the drive pulley is mounted to (commonly called the output shaft).

Looking at the parts diagrams on partzilla, it looks like your main output bearing (part # 92045) could be the culprit. Those type of bearings, once they get an imperfection on the rollers will begin whining and slowly eating themselves. If you've ever dealt with a bad wheel bearing on a car, it's very similar, just harder to diagnose because this one is inside the transmission.

Kinda FYI... when looking up the parts diagrams, I had to use both "Transmission" section and "Crankcase" section to get a full idea of the parts layout.
 

Registered
Joined
26 Posts
Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
After watching your videos, here's my opinion...

The rear wheel seems okay. The small hiss sound from the brakes is normal. It looked like it rolled nice and smooth, so I would look elsewhere...

The drive sprocket worries me some. It looked like you had somewhere around 1/8" play in/out. The rotational play (how far you can turn the sprocket back and forth before you feel it connect) looks like it has some pretty substantial wear.


Check your manual for tolerances. I suspect the in/out play is well above spec, and if you grab the sprocket and try to go directly up and down, you should have no play that you can feel.

This is looking to be the bearings that support the shaft the drive pulley is mounted to (commonly called the output shaft).

Looking at the parts diagrams on partzilla, it looks like your main output bearing (part # 92045) could be the culprit. Those type of bearings, once they get an imperfection on the rollers will begin whining and slowly eating themselves. If you've ever dealt with a bad wheel bearing on a car, it's very similar, just harder to diagnose because this one is inside the transmission.

Kinda FYI... when looking up the parts diagrams, I had to use both "Transmission" section and "Crankcase" section to get a full idea of the parts layout.
Well the play on the pulley is along the horizontal... Like in and out. Its maybe a couple milimeters? So there should be no play at all? There is no play on rocking forward/backwards.. and I can't move it up or down at all.

I put the belt back on loose... And hand turned it... Nothing... As I tightened it the noise returned but seems to be in the rear somewhere.... It seems to have something to do with the tension. I don't have a deflection gauge so I'm just using the marks on the frame someone earlier marked for reference. Kinda playing with the tension..looser / slacker... Seems the tighter it is the more the noise appears.

Bearings you think? Well.. thanks again.
Am I still looking at a catastrophic failure scenario?

Also check this out... Possible is the same problem???

https://www.vulcanforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=172489
 

Registered
Joined
250 Posts
The link you posted could be a possibility. The only way to check would be to pull it apart and make a visual inspection.

Since you mentioned you don't have one, get yourself a deflection gauge to properly check belt tension. I check my box, and the one I have here at home is an OTC 4748. If I remember correctly, I picked it up for less than $20 a few years ago. A quick search showed me prices between $16 and $25 now.

With the proper tension set, and a visual inspection to make sure all proper parts are in place and in good, serviceable shape, do you still have noise?

While you have the rear wheel off, actually stick your fingers inside the bearings and spin... They should be silky smooth as they turn. If they jitter or feel at all gritty, they're on their way out and should be replaced as soon as possible.

No vertical play in the drive sprocket is a good thing. As for the in/out play, it might be within specs, but refer to the manual to double check.

Putting tension on the belt can cause a dying bearing to make noise, where it wouldn't under free or no-load conditions. Not having all proper parts in place (such as that little piece mentioned to the other thread you referenced) can also throw a bearing out of alignment and cause noise/premature wear. An overtightened belt would likely make the popping noise as each tooth releases from the sprocket, unless you have significant wear on the belt generally rounding the teeth off.

We're not out of the woods yet, but there is a light at the end so to speak.

It's a matter of systematic elimination of all possible causes until the problem is determined.
 

Registered
Joined
26 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
The link you posted could be a possibility. The only way to check would be to pull it apart and make a visual inspection.

Since you mentioned you don't have one, get yourself a deflection gauge to properly check belt tension. I check my box, and the one I have here at home is an OTC 4748. If I remember correctly, I picked it up for less than $20 a few years ago. A quick search showed me prices between $16 and $25 now.

With the proper tension set, and a visual inspection to make sure all proper parts are in place and in good, serviceable shape, do you still have noise?

While you have the rear wheel off, actually stick your fingers inside the bearings and spin... They should be silky smooth as they turn. If they jitter or feel at all gritty, they're on their way out and should be replaced as soon as possible.

No vertical play in the drive sprocket is a good thing. As for the in/out play, it might be within specs, but refer to the manual to double check.

Putting tension on the belt can cause a dying bearing to make noise, where it wouldn't under free or no-load conditions. Not having all proper parts in place (such as that little piece mentioned to the other thread you referenced) can also throw a bearing out of alignment and cause noise/premature wear. An overtightened belt would likely make the popping noise as each tooth releases from the sprocket, unless you have significant wear on the belt generally rounding the teeth off.

We're not out of the woods yet, but there is a light at the end so to speak.

It's a matter of systematic elimination of all possible causes until the problem is determined.
Thanks so much again for helping here. Today I've been working in my attic all day... I'm adding insulation.

I have a buddy getting some parts for me.. he has a source for wholesale. Another guy has proper tools and is gonna come help me pull the bearing out of the front drive pulley.

I will definately inspect those rear bearings once I take the rear wheel off.

Hopefully this gets sorted. I'll update later.
 

Registered
Joined
250 Posts
I hope it works out too. I know what it's like being unable to ride. Thankfully, I'm getting back out there after my accident, and I'm just glad I can help others do the same.
 

Registered
Joined
26 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
I hope it works out too. I know what it's like being unable to ride. Thankfully, I'm getting back out there after my accident, and I'm just glad I can help others do the same.
Howdy again..

So took the front drive pulley off. Shaft looks ok to me.. not ground up. However the shaft has lateral play and I note the bearing seal is damaged. That bearing needs to be replaced. In looking at it I just can't figure how to get that bearing out. ... Do I need the split the engine? If so this isn't a driveway job I fear?
 

Registered
Joined
26 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Looking at the parts diagrams on partzilla, it looks like your main output bearing (part # 92045) could be the culprit.
Just reading back over this again.... You nailed it. That bearing is toast.

Although looking at the Partzilla page I got confused a bit... Looks like there's two bearings?? Part#92045 & Part#92045B? They're different prices... I get both,????

Then of course there's the oil seal... And I'll need a new collar, this one is scarred a bit.

Then figuring out how to get the bearing out... Trying to figure that out...
 

Registered
Joined
250 Posts
There are actually several bearings carrying the same basic part number. The one on the outer end where your drive pulley is is the 92045, or more specifically 92045-0059.

Not the first one of these I've seen.

Unfortunately, this is a split-the case scenario. If possible, I would wait to order parts until I had the engine open, in case you find any other surprises inside. You never know what you're going to run into inside, or what else you'll see that is best getting attention now before it goes and you have to repeat the process again.

Buy a box of ziplock baggies, a couple sharpies, and a roll of blue painter's tape. Have your camera handy, along with a pen and notepad.

Label and catalog everything as it comes off... Pictures and a separate description telling the order of removal, specific location/order of parts, etc... The will all be worth their weight in gold when assembly time comes. Pictures might even be good for the forum here as a technical writeup in case someone else has this issue.

Working in the shop, this was my S.O.P., and it saved me a ton of time and aggravation. Plus, when I had my accident and couldn't work, one of the other guys could easily figure out what went where and complete the job as though he had started it himself.
 

Registered
Joined
104 Posts
Ok 60,000 miles for us Americans

Sounds like the belt is rubbing on the belt guide. Watched all 3 videos first shows noise with belt on. Rear wheel sounds good could be a rear wheel bearing only makes noise under load from belt.

Front pulley / output shaft seems normal.

Sounds like belt to belt guide rubbing.

These bikes are pretty bullet proof Kawasaki makes good stuff.

:nerd::grin2::nerd:
 

Registered
Joined
26 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
Sounds like the belt is rubbing on the belt guide. Watched all 3 videos first shows noise with belt on. Rear wheel sounds good could be a rear wheel bearing only makes noise under load from belt.

Front pulley / output shaft seems normal.

Sounds like belt to belt guide rubbing.

These bikes are pretty bullet proof Kawasaki makes good stuff.

/forums/images/VulcanForums_2015/smilies/tango_face_glasses.png/forums/images/VulcanForums_2015/smilies/tango_face_grin.png/forums/images/VulcanForums_2015/smilies/tango_face_glasses.png
I wish that's all it was. Had the outer seal on the output shaft out... The bearing is toast.
 
1 - 20 of 29 Posts
Top