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I guess I don't quiet have the 'touch'. The filler cap is on tight now and not leaking. In future, I'll remove the muffler so I can get at the filler cap with a torque wrench and do it according to Hoyle.
It is very possible that the Oring is deformed or the filler cap itself. No need to remove the muffler, a major pain and you would then need to replace the muffler gasket. 9 foot lbs is not much torque and very few torque wrenches are accurate a that reading. Put the cap on til it touches and then give it a 1/4 turn. Make sure you do not over fill the final drive. There is not much if any pressure in it.
Replace the O ring, they do flatten out.
 

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it won't take a 1/4 past finger tight, maybe 1/16-1/8 turn at most, it could be that it has been over tightened and the plug flange is cracked where the O-ring sets.

To get a torque wrench to work at that low of a setting it would have to be a little 3/8 drive job, most work in inch-pounds. My 1/2 drive torque wrench has the lowest setting of like 20 ft-lbs. you can put more than 9 ft-lbs of torque with a little 1/4 in drive ratchet
 
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it won't take a 1/4 past finger tight, maybe 1/16-1/8 turn at most, it could be that it has been over tightened and the plug flange is cracked where the O-ring sets.

To get a torque wrench to work at that low of a setting it would have to be a little 3/8 drive job, most work in inch-pounds. My 1/2 drive torque wrench has the lowest setting of like 20 ft-lbs. you can put more than 9 ft-lbs of torque with a little 1/4 in drive ratchet
I actually just tighten it until it gives resistance. My 1/4 turn was basically a guess. there is no way to gt a torque wrench on that filler cap without removing the muffler One other thing that I did not ask the OP is if he is filling the final drive while the bike is on the sidestand. If he is doing it that way he is over filling.Also, the manual says 4.2 ounces of fluid. That may be true if the final was completely empty, which it would not be unless it was taken apart.
The best thing he could do is replace the cap and the O ring.
I have changed mine numerous times on my 2004 and 2012 and never had it leak.
 

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I have an old oil pump can with a flexible nozzle that I use to fill it, I never try to measure the amount in, I just slowly pump in oil until it just starts to run out the fill hole.

272981
 
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Discussion Starter #26
if you are really worried about that part, you could contact a trike shop. The entire swingarm is eliminated when trikeing. They may just give it to you.
That's a great suggestion. More from the point of view of getting a discounted rear wheel, but worth pursuing. And there will surely come a time when I'll have to switch to a trike. Good to learn where the local resources are...

Thanks for the idea.
 

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That's a great suggestion. More from the point of view of getting a discounted rear wheel, but worth pursuing. And there will surely come a time when I'll have to switch to a trike. Good to learn where the local resources are...

Thanks for the idea.
My suggestion was pointed more to getting an entire final drive and swingarm assembly to replace the ones on your bike that you think you are having problems with. My opinion is if you follow the tips you have received, you will find you actually do not have a problem. Try the simple things first. A seal leaking on the final drive is rare if the bike has been maintained properly. As far as the vibration dampener, it is not a critical part.
 

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Discussion Starter #28
My suggestion was pointed more to getting an entire final drive and swingarm assembly to replace the ones on your bike that you think you are having problems with. My opinion is if you follow the tips you have received, you will find you actually do not have a problem. Try the simple things first. A seal leaking on the final drive is rare if the bike has been maintained properly. As far as the vibration dampener, it is not a critical part.
I got that, and will certainly stock up on all parts potentially available to me at a trike shop (assuming I find one near me). Since the leak near the swing arm and final drive is relatively trivial (at least for now), replacing the severely pitted and leaky (slow air leak there - and no, it's not the valve) rear wheel is a slightly higher priority. I can live with the slow leak, but it would be nice to have a clean wheel to keep up the good looks of my ride. Potentially, I could repair and powder coat the old wheel, put a tire on it, and when it came time to clean the wheel, it would be easier to swap the clean wheel for the dirty one, get back on the road immediately, and take my sweet time dealing with the dirty one.

And of course, I've been taking to heart and putting into practice many of the tips and techniques shared here. I knocked off all the Repair and Check items on the 24K mile point on the Maintenance Schedule, so have had quite the learning experience and earned myself 3K miles before the next oil and filter change.

Many thanks to all responders and contributors.
 

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This may not apply to you but my 1500 wing had oil on the filler cap final drive and it turned out to be the rear shock just above the final drive leaking down on to the final drive ..i do not know any thing about the 1800 so this is just information for you probably does not apply..
 

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That “dog bone” looking thing has been on all the 1800s 01-17 models and probably does very little. Normally the fill cap won’t leak if it’s even slightly tight because of its o-ring. The fluid level is supposed to be at the bottom of its threads, so there’s not much that could even try to get out. The ring gear bearing seal has a weep hole that will leak from the drip tube on the bottom if the seal is shot or the bearing wears enough to cause the seal to leak.
 

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Discussion Starter #31
The ring gear bearing seal has a weep hole that will leak from the drip tube on the bottom if the seal is shot or the bearing wears enough to cause the seal to leak.
"The ring gear bearing seal has a weep hole that will leak from the drip tube on the bottom if the seal is shot or the bearing wears enough to cause the seal to leak".

Pardon my ignorance but, where exactly is this weep hole? Can you upload a photo? Or reference a page in the Service Manual where this might be found?

Thanks
 

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look at post #10
that is it
 

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Discussion Starter #33
look at post #10
that is it
Ah, we come full circle... I initiated a discussion on that very "weep hole".

"Oil leaking from Final Drive case - what is this screw? and why does it leak?"

I was given to understand in that discussion that this is really just something to divert oil coming from elsewhere away from the rotor. It's not a replaceable part, and I don't believe it actually penetrates the Final Drive case.

From GLBlinded? "
It’s not supposed to be a screw, on my ‘05 it is a drain passage for oil leaking from the big seal. So it doesn’t get on the brake rotor or too much of the wheel/tire"

To sum that discussion up, the oil dripping from that "weep hole" originated elsewhere - the final drive fill cap. I little more oomph on the wrench solved that.

I'm still watching the area around the "dog bone looking thing" after every ride to see if any more oil appears at the bottom of that. So far, no. But I haven't had the bike out for more than a couple of short runs.
 

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final drive pic.png

look at this...... I think this will get everyone on the same page with what is labeled.

I may have messed up to start not realizing I was looking at a picture from the bottom, my bad,
 

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Discussion Starter #35
View attachment 273047

look at this...... I think this will get everyone on the same page with what is labeled.

I may have messed up to start not realizing I was looking at a picture from the bottom, my bad,
You'd have had to have some prior knowledge to spot that "weep hole" in that picture, eh? But thanks for sharing where the vent cap is. I imagine I'll know soon enough if that's the ultimate source of the oil weeping down to the weep hole or finding its way to that dog-goned dogbone.

Thanks yet again.
 

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as has been stated before, to fill it, it needs to be on level ground and on center stand, then the oil level is just at the bottom of the hole of the large fill cap. If over full, the ring gear will foam up the oil, build pressure, and blow and sling it out places that it otherwise would not do. For usually the bearings also kind of act as an oil stop because of them spinning and not letting oil past, at stop, the oil should be below seal surfaces, it is the spinning action of the ring gear that acts as a dipper and slings oil where it needs to be.
 

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Discussion Starter #37
as has been stated before, to fill it, it needs to be on level ground and on center stand, then the oil level is just at the bottom of the hole of the large fill cap. If over full, the ring gear will foam up the oil, build pressure, and blow and sling it out places that it otherwise would not do. For usually the bearings also kind of act as an oil stop because of them spinning and not letting oil past, at stop, the oil should be below seal surfaces, it is the spinning action of the ring gear that acts as a dipper and slings oil where it needs to be.
When I drained the final drive oil, the level (opened that cap first) was good. I made sure that I let the replacement oil drain out of the filler cap hole until it stopped coming out - and, while not on the center stand, (I used a J&S jack stand Loaded Motorcycle Lift Combo | USA Made | J&S Jacks), I'm confident that the bike was level - both side to side and fore and aft.

Thanks again
 

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that is the problem with trying to diagnose things this way, with out being there and looking and hearing and feeling, all we can do is list the most probable causes from our experience and just hope that one of them is correct for your case at hand.
 

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my first thought was......loook how close to the edge those bolts are......i would pull the unit and make sure nothing is cracked on the casting around the holes
 

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When I drained the final drive oil, the level (opened that cap first) was good. I made sure that I let the replacement oil drain out of the filler cap hole until it stopped coming out - and, while not on the center stand, (I used a J&S jack stand Loaded Motorcycle Lift Combo | USA Made | J&S Jacks), I'm confident that the bike was level - both side to side and fore and aft.

Thanks again
If the old oil was at the correct level when you checked it, it may not have been leaking to begin with, or it finally settled down when it hit the correct level.
If you really want to rebuild the final drive go for it. Did you ever replace the O ring and the cap? Simple things first.
 
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