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Discussion Starter #1
Ok, I know it's December, and I probably wouldn't be doing much riding anyway. But I can't even do any of the winter work I wanted to do. My drive belt snapped at 12k miles. Dealer said it should be covered under extended warranty. Oops, they lied. Called me back and said Yamaha said it was a normal wear item. OK, so I ordered an aftermarket belt (and some new mirrors, and had them air-freighted to me for less than the Yamaha belt). When I go to install the belt, I find that my drive sprocket is trashed again.
Both the sprocket and the output shaft need to be replaced. Now I'm pissed. Dealer takes the bike in and I force the issue with customer service (I told them the belt broke because of the drive pulley problem, so it's their fault). So finally Yamaha agrees to fix the issue, but they act like they're doing me a favor, and they say they won't fix this again (try me!). To complicate things further, I see in the maint. manual that Yamaha recommends replacing the sprockets as a set. They didn't do this last time, so I force the issue and get a new rear sprocket as well. So things are looking good except for the problems I have with my speed* exhaust. One of the factory welds for the heat shield broke, and the baffles have worked their way loose, and shake within the cannister. In total, the bike has been at the dealer for six weeks now, and I'm still waiting to hear what they're going to do for me on the exhaust.
I check the belt tension and alignment religiously, and I still believe that there is a built in alignment issue with my bike.
If anyone else has had similar issues, please let me know. I love this bike, but I'm losing patience. Assuming this problem does get fixed (the real problem, not the symptoms), I'll let everyone know where the root problem was.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Darkstar,
Not sure why you moved the topic here. The only vendor involved is Yamaha. My dealer (Bentley's in Canonsburg, PA) has treated me very well. They and I fight with Yamaha continuously. This topic relates to drive sprocket and speed* exhaust. My main concern is that this issue be out in the open. I now have my third set of drive sprockets and output shafts on an 18 month old bike. In my opinion, the splines on the sprocket are ridiculous. They are a loose fit with less than 1/2" spline length. Belt is 1-1/8 wide. Any misalignment between the front and rear sprocket will cause the front sprocket to wobble as it rotates. This is what happens on my bike, and as far as I'm concerned this is why so many of us have had a loose nut on the drive sprocket.
 

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Is it possible that the spacing of the wheel is incorrect possibly due to a bent or defective swingarm? If you look at the pulleys back to front, they should be lined up straight and well as on equal and parallel planes. I had a similar issue when I went with an aftermarket swingarm and wheel but I was able to space the wheel to correctly line up the pulleys. If I were you, I would look into any lemon laws that PA might have and see if it applies to motorcycles. I know here in NY, if the vehicle (car or bike) is back to the dealer three times with the same problem, you can sue to have the vehicle replaced. I should know. I experienced it with a 2000 Cavalier. Bad tranny three times in six months on a new car with less than 2000 miles.
 

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At 8700+ miles I did a routine inspection of the drive pulley when replacing my worn rear tire. I discovered the pulley retaining nut and pulley to be loose and the nut was held in place from backing off by the crush retaining washer. There was an abundance of rusty residue which is METAL FATIGUE and the pulley belt was riding on the outside edge of the drive pulley. The inner surface of the drive pulley still had the factory paint. Based on this initial inspection I took the following worn parts to my dealer: DRIVE PULLEY, COLLAR-SPACER (behind pulley), NUT & CRUSH WASHER and requested warranty replacement. My bike is not yet one year old! The dealer was agreeable to let me do the warranty repair myself since the bike was on my lift to mount a new tire. I had to wait two weeks for the collar because it was on national back order. IMHO it is imperative to replace this collar. When the pulley loosens up the preload between the middle shaft bearing inner race and the pulley is lost and the related parts begin to spin on the shaft and cause wear as well as the splines wash out eventually, etc. In my case the middle shaft was worn more then the drive pulley but I didn't recognize it at first!
When it came time to do the repair I found upon further investigation that the middle shaft was no good. I also replaced the middle shaft and small thin O-Ring between the bearing and collar that seal fluid from the transfer case. This seal has been forgotten by many a service tech during the recall process! I paid out of pocket for the middle shaft, o-ring & gasket but it's not worth wasting words over. I didn't trust the dealer's tech to do the proper repair and as such performed the replacement myself. IMHO the factory torque of 72ft/lbs was not enough force to tighten the pulley properly because of the design of the original retaining washer. The replacement washer is a different mat'l and design. I fabricated a special spanner tool to properly torque the pulley nut without using the brakes. There is no harm in over-torquing since the pressure is being applied between the inner bearing race only and pulley. The other end of the middle shaft floats in a bearing in the transfer case. I progressively torqued the nut to 125ft/lbs without any problem. The output shaft of the transmission uses the same nut and crush washer. This nut was not loose during the rebuild. I also replaced its washer and increased the torque value to 90ft/lbs just to be safe! Neither of these nuts are adjusting preload like front wheel auto tapered bearings. Currently my drive belt is running down the center of the drive pulley after 80 miles!
I agree with you and others that Yamaha has a real problem with their current drive pulley design. The thread, nut & spline are not generous for this final drive. There should be a recall..LOL.
I never perceived any stretching during the torquing process of the drive pulley retaining nut from 72-125ft/lbs. I'm totally confident with my repair procedure and parts replacement. I'm not confident that the repair will last because of the deficiency of the current design. The proof is in the pudding and only time will tell.
Some jpegs of failed middle shaft, tool & transfer case.

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks Charlie and Alan,
Unfortunately, in PA the lemon law does not apply to motorcycles. I already did the research on this after the second time this occurred. My bike was in the shop for over 30 days the first time, since parts were backordered. If this happens again, I will push the matter very hard!
One of my biggest issues right now is trying to communicate with Yamaha through my dealer. They are trying, but don't seem to understand that they are only putting a band-aid on the real problem.
Does anyone have a suggestion for checking the alignment between the front and rear pulleys? I don't think eyeballing or straight edges are accurate enough to find the problem.
I have also over-torqued the drive pulley nut to 110 ft-lbs, but the setup was already too far gone and loosened within a few hundred miles.
Oh, and thanks for mentioning the spacer. For some reason I had forgotten to check the length. I don't recall seeing a specification for this.
 

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liquid_bullet,

It's a drive for you, but try Cross Roads Motorsports (www.xroadsmotorsports.com) in Gibsonia. They seem to be one of the better stealers (dealers) I've encountered. Their service guys know their sh!t. An ex-Bentley's sales guy works there now and I got the scoop on how both shops operated. Xroads is the place to go.
 

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All's Well - Sept 1st 2019

Road* 33T Front Pulley & Replacement Middle Shaft after nearly 15 years and 43,000+ miles ... Perfect Condition.
  • Using unworn (new/like new) parts and increased torque value as stated in my OP will resolve loose pulley issues '02-05' Warrior
    No Thread Lock Used :)


 

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Original Thread #5 with recovered Photos:

At 8700+ miles I did a routine inspection of the drive pulley when replacing my worn rear tire. I discovered the pulley retaining nut and pulley to be loose and the nut was held in place from backing off by the crush retaining washer. There was an abundance of rusty residue which is METAL FATIGUE and the pulley belt was riding on the outside edge of the drive pulley. The inner surface of the drive pulley still had the factory paint. Based on this initial inspection I took the following worn parts to my dealer: DRIVE PULLEY, COLLAR-SPACER (behind pulley), NUT & CRUSH WASHER and requested warranty replacement. My bike is not yet one year old! The dealer was agreeable to let me do the warranty repair myself since the bike was on my lift to mount a new tire. I had to wait two weeks for the collar because it was on national back order. IMHO it is imperative to replace this collar. When the pulley loosens up the preload between the middle shaft bearing inner race and the pulley is lost and the related parts begin to spin on the shaft and cause wear as well as the splines wash out eventually, etc. In my case the middle shaft was worn more then the drive pulley but I didn't recognize it at first!
When it came time to do the repair I found upon further investigation that the middle shaft was no good. I also replaced the middle shaft and small thin O-Ring between the bearing and collar that seal fluid from the transfer case. This seal has been forgotten by many a service tech during the recall process! I paid out of pocket for the middle shaft, o-ring & gasket but it's not worth wasting words over. I didn't trust the dealer's tech to do the proper repair and as such performed the replacement myself. IMHO the factory torque of 72ft/lbs was not enough force to tighten the pulley properly because of the design of the original retaining washer. The replacement washer is a different mat'l and design. I fabricated a special spanner tool to properly torque the pulley nut without using the brakes. There is no harm in over-torquing since the pressure is being applied between the inner bearing race only and pulley. The other end of the middle shaft floats in a bearing in the transfer case. I progressively torqued the nut to 125ft/lbs without any problem. The output shaft of the transmission uses the same nut and crush washer. This nut was not loose during the rebuild. I also replaced its washer and increased the torque value to 90ft/lbs just to be safe! Neither of these nuts are adjusting preload like front wheel auto tapered bearings. Currently my drive belt is running down the center of the drive pulley after 80 miles!
I agree with you and others that Yamaha has a real problem with their current drive pulley design. The thread, nut & spline are not generous for this final drive. There should be a recall..LOL.
I never perceived any stretching during the torquing process of the drive pulley retaining nut from 72-125ft/lbs. I'm totally confident with my repair procedure and parts replacement. I'm not confident that the repair will last because of the deficiency of the current design. The proof is in the pudding and only time will tell.
Some jpegs of failed middle shaft, tool & transfer case.




 

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Alanh, I'm shocked by your photos! Everything looks as if the motorcycle did not go outside the premises on its own. The cleanliness inside the drive pulley housing is incredible! Tell me, what is the mileage of this motorcycle?
 

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Alanh, I'm shocked by your photos! Everything looks as if the motorcycle did not go outside the premises on its own. The cleanliness inside the drive pulley housing is incredible! Tell me, what is the mileage of this motorcycle?
C'mon Peter, you're more resourceful than that :) The bike was less than 8 months old and had 14,000 kilometers. Was replacing a worn rear tire late November 2004 and decided to inspect the front pulley.
The first photo above is the worn middle shaft after I cleaned the area to inspect. The second & third photos are the new replacement parts before torqueing and folding over the tabbed lock washer.
 
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