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Discussion Starter #1
A couple of weeks ago, on my daily ride to work, My 1989 GL1500 (120,000 miles) suddenly gave a brief ratcheting sound (CLACK, CLACK, CLACK) accompanied by a sudden nose dive. The occurrence was VERY brief. I jumped to the conclusion that I had a front wheel bearing trying to lock up.



Naturally, I immediately called for the trailer and hauled it home.



That weekend, I set about replacing the front wheel bearings. Unfortunately, while they DID need to be replaced, they were not in any kind of shape to have caused the symptoms. Therefore, I finally did a bit of troubleshooting. I put her up on the center stand and ran it up to some speed in 5th. There is a noticeable noisiness (clacking again) though not as bad as the event on the road. I jumped to another conclusion that the final drive had been run out of oil and was going out. There were some drops of gear oil hanging onto the bottom.



This past weekend I installed a good used final drive. When installing and with the transmission in neutral, I rotated the mechanism by hand. Everything feels silky smooth and tight. No slack at all (as felt by hand) and absolutely no noises. However, once all was reassembled I repeated the above test (high gear on center stand) the same noise is present. Being more careful to locate it, I feel it is coming from the area where the output shaft and the universal joint are located.



Other than the on road event, the only thing recently that happened was that it jumped out of reverse while backing it in one night.



Shifting the old bike (and my 1979 GL1000) lazily (that is, not firmly from one gear to the next) can find “neutral” between any gears. While that never made me feel all warm and fuzzy, it never seemed to be a real problem. Just have to shift them all the way to the next gear.



Can it be that the universal joint is worn out and causing the noise and the symptoms described above (even though I cannot feel any slack in it while rotating the final drive by hand)? Is it possible that maybe the reverse is involved somehow? Or is it more likely (my biggest fear) that the transmission has developed a major (or even minor) problem?



I’d hate to waste any more time and money fixing stuff that ain’t broke.



Thanks!
 

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Bull, let me give you my valuable opinion and great knowledge...... Welcome to the forum from Pa.. That's it. Sorry, I'm not a wrench guy. But don't worry, there are a lot of them on the forum and you should be getting replies shortly.

Ride safe and enjoy the site...
 

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Having many old cars [over 50 years old] you get many thing that would not normally go wrong go wrong. The method I would try to locate the noise is; get the noise happening as you have done previously then get screw driver and place the handle to your ear and place the pointy end at different locations until it is at that noise. That is where your problem will be. Eric
 

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Start the bike, and with it in neutral and not on the center stand or side stand, you straddling it, push down hard on the handlebars to bounce the front end up and down, listen close and if you hear the noise it is probably the shifting fork.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Actually I use a variation on the old “Screw Driver Stethoscope” method. I use a 2 or 3 foot piece of 1” PVC. With this I have localized the noise to the area where the U-Joint/Output Shaft is.
 

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Well done. There is always satifaction we fix something yourself.Eric
 

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Bull, let me give you my valuable opinion and great knowledge...... Welcome to the forum from Pa.. That's it. Sorry, I'm not a wrench guy. But don't worry, there are a lot of them on the forum and you should be getting replies shortly.

Ride safe and enjoy the site...
We are here and now. Further than that, all knowledge is moonshine. ~ Two Wheel Wing
 
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