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Discussion Starter #1
I've already searched but didn't find a definitive answer. Got an '06 - 900 classic with 15,500 km on her. At a steady speed of 50 km/hr I hear a rubbing or vibrating metal sound to me. Cha-cha-cha-cha that goes away when slowing down or speeding up. Sounds like the left rear side. I thought it may be my license plate frame or saddlebag buckles. I removed those and still get the sound. I know old bikes mostly shaft driven but not these newer and belt driven ones. Can anyone throw some ideas at me? I just don't want to cause any damage if that's being done or have the rear wheel come off because it's a bearing or something! I'm already debating on even taking it out.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Would like to add, I can apply the rear brakes and the noise continues and also pull the clutch and listen to the sound as I coast. As I slow down below the 50km speed....the sound goes away. I was hoping it was the rear calipers as you can wiggle them around and make the possible noise but it doesn't seem like they're the culprit.
 

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My thoughts are the belt or a belt in the tire but without seeing and hearing it is just speculation. I am good at finding unusual noises and this bike sure is good in that dept. Could be a bad spot in the belt. This is just some of the things I have encountered. Sorry I know it's no help..
 

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When I have had bad bearings it usually made a noise all the time, just got slower or faster with speed and was usually worse turning to one side or the other. A belt will change with tension while pulling or coasting. But these belts are almost bullet proof so to speak. I have seen them with 100,000 on them.
 

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Have you checked the belt tension or possibly rubbing the guard. If a pulley has been changed the belt can rub the coolant tank but it makes a noise all the time. None of my ideas should sound clangy metallic but more of a squishing noise.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
First off, ANY suggestions are of help! Thoughts of others can broaden ones thoughts. I think I'm pretty good at finding noises but this one has me stumped so I posted. It still has a "metal" sound to it but I like your idea of the bearing sound being more constant. Makes sense. I'll take a closer looks at belt rubbing an such. Glad to hear these belts are bullet proof so to speak as you say. Anyone else is more than welcome to chime in with thoughts and ideas! Have a great weekend!
 

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Maybe jack it up level with the rear tire off the ground and turn the rear tire and check all the spots where things might be rubbing...if the bike is "stock" it would seem doubtful that anything rubs, but perhaps something got bent or replaced off-kilter somehow. Pretty tough to diagnose over the inter-web.

It goes without saying that you'd be torquing all of the bolts anywhere around the rear end, and especially the axle nut if you suspect that there might be something loose back there.

It could be the belt, but typically belts "chirp" rather than making rubbing or metal sounds.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Will do! Maybe I can even get that wheel spinning the right speed. I understand the difficulty in locating a sound over the net. Just checking with the experts first in case it's one of those "oh, this is what happened to me!" When and if I find, I'll be sure to post for others. Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Got excited for a moment and realized I have vance & hines on the bike. I had the heat shields off to pack the baffles and thought maybe it was them. Removed them and no luck. Everything looks good and tight, especially the belt. I've been reading about from tension to dressing and even a dab of lithium grease on the outside of the belt. It is sorta kind of a turning "squeak" sound at 50km/hr....I'm going to try some belt fixes.
 

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Rub a candle on the inner and outer edge of the belt as you spin the tire. The wax may remove the sound then you know whats rubbing. Some people have permanently fixed the rub sound with this wax.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Fantastic idea! The sound doesn't bother me at all. It's the fact of not knowing what it is. I'll get to that in a couple days and promise to post my find.
 

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BOTM Winner, June 2015
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Based on your description of it being a metallic sound, you might want to check the torque on the front pulley nut. Even if it's 1/10 of a turn too loose it can cause this type of sound. I had a sound similar to what you are describing and it turned out to be that. I don't remember what the exact torque specs are for the front pulley nut, as it's been about a year since I've encountered it, but I'm sure someone here can give you that number. Worth a shot anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I read up on belt adjustments/tension and took a closer look. Would you say the belt should be more centered than in the pic? Maybe I should tweak it a little on one side.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
It seems the belt wants to stay to the left. I don't see the adjustments "tilting" the belt to the other side. The adjusters just evenly tighten it. I can also see the outside of the belt worn a little showing the nylon. Guess I'll still try the candle wax trick. Any more thoughts on this belt?
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I did some more reading and it seems these belts sit a little to the left anyway. Whether it was the wax or re-tensioning the belt, the sound is GONE. I actually get a little whine from it when I pull the clutch and listen. Bottom line it was the belt and am happy that's what it is and not something major. I may still tweak a little but at least I know something ain't gonna blow riding down the highway. Thanks for your suggestions everyone! Ride safe.
 

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You may want to pull the cover off and check your output shaft bearing. Mine failed at 22k on my 2007 Custom. If the nut is loose the shaft will move in and out causing bearing failure. Hope this is not your problem.
 

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I may be late to the game but it looks to me like the belt is not running properly on the pulley. The belt will run to the outside of the pulley, but it should not rub or fray the material against the pulley. I have seen where the adjusting marks were not exactly correct and I have also seen where some try to adjust the belt to run in the middle of the pulley. This can lead to improper alignment. From all I have read and from what the Techs at the shop have told me the belt will run to the outside of the rear pulley. My stock pulley was barely wider than the belt so it didn't show up much, but the after mkt. pulley is wider and shows more space.
 

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BOTM Winner, June 2015
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Based on the pic provided above, the belt is running in the right position. Same place mine is running with no issues.
 
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