Howl noise at 50 mph from rear - K-Bikes.com - Excellence in Motion
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old Jul 19th, 2013, 6:17 am Thread Starter
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Howl noise at 50 mph from rear

The title of this post pretty much says it all. Just noticed it for the first time yesterday on my 2002 K1200RS. Just a mid pitch, not real loud howl, at EXACTLY 50 mph. Seems to be in the rear and I'm not yet convinced that it has to do with final drive. It's a resonant kind of thing.

I'm going to try a bit more tire pressure in the rear and see if it changes. I've experienced this kind of thing with a few car tires on customers cars. (I'm an auto tech) I'll report back on anything I find out. I figured I'd share it here in case anyone else has this occur. Hopefully I can track it down.

Thoughts...?

Dino

2001 K1200 RS
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old Jul 19th, 2013, 7:34 am Thread Starter
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OK so I checked tire pressures before the drive to work today and they're in spec.The howl was still there. I set the cruise control at 50 mph and then leaned the bike off center left and right. Definitely noticed a change in level of sound as I did this, more so when I leaned right. It was a little less in that direction. I'm thinking it may be the early signs of a worn rear wheel bearing. Time to pull the wheel for an inspection.

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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old Jul 21st, 2013, 11:16 am
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I also find the best way to listen for RD impending doom is to run the bike up to about 60 on a straight quite road, then roll off the throttle and coast whilst listening. When the bearing shim clearances go awol, you can pick it up more on decel.

BUT higher pitch noises are serious things to look at soon, because they may come from the pinion/crown gear mesh. Check the RD oil for any metal fragments.

Noisy tires have been an issue with me for a while. If I am on Tarmacadam I hear rear noise, but not on smooth concrete or the new rubber composite mix road surfaces. My RD has no play and replaced another I took off for refurb with no serious problems but the same noise, so I have put the rear noise down to tires.

However, check your rear tire very carefully, because a nail or stud stuck in the tread can give you that sound. I had this wierd noise pushing the bike with the motor off or low speed manouvering, then found a drywall screw in the tire and pressure holding.



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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old Jul 21st, 2013, 12:15 pm Thread Starter
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After a 70 mile ride yesterday I'm now thinking tire noise as well. Throttle on or off, in gear or out, I still get the same noise at exactly 50 mph.

The weather has warmed up considerably this week as well which could also be a factor. Oil in RD looks great. In fact, I changed it about 800 miles ago before I bought the bike. (bought it from a customer) Followed the guidance of the Clymer manual (which came with the bike) for recommended oil.

I'm going to try a lower tire pressure temporarily and see if the sound changes. It gets a little less when I'm leaning left or right off the center line of the tire. In a previous post I mentioned that I thought it was different on the right side but after listening on various road surfaces yesterday, I notice that it's the same change left or right. It gets quieter.

Another clue is the fact that the resonant note of the tire when tapped with a screwdriver handle while on the center stand is the same frequency as the howl I hear!

Thanks for the tips Vox.

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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old Jul 21st, 2013, 5:06 pm
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Now I have also tapped my rear tire and get a similar sound - it 'rings'. I have another theory. I do not ride a high mileage and my tires can be a few years old before I replace them. I have noticed that whilst the tread is OK, the rubber has quite a hard feeling and my rear tire is not wearing as much as others say it should.

If you wanted a hard composition for non track and touring to get high mileage, you cannot find one. I think my tires have hardened up with age.

See what the date code is on your rear tire. Mine is 4 years old. That is a reason why I shall keep away from 2 rear + 1 front tire deals from now on. By the time I mount the second rear it is 2-3 years old already. Then you have to watch the tire shops clearing end of line tread patterns which may have been stored a year.



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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old Jul 22nd, 2013, 4:25 pm
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Just another data point. I recently put my RS back into service. One of the first things to do was put on fresh rubber. When I rode it prior to the new rubber, I did get much more road noise on the 4 yr old MeZ6 tires. New PR 2CTs now and it never dawned on me....so, yes, I think the old rubber getting hard ( ) was the noise maker.

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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old Jul 22nd, 2013, 5:17 pm
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I think my Avon Storms are going to give me over 10K on a rear, which I never saw from any other tire.

On the other hand, being aware of less stick I am ultra careful with leans and in the wet. If I could that aged rubber in the center of a new tire for more mileage, it would suit my conservative riding style.



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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old Jul 23rd, 2013, 5:56 pm
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I have had Pilot Roads (1 and 2) rear tires make howling noises.
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old Jul 23rd, 2013, 7:24 pm Thread Starter
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Well, after some more rides, I'm convinced it's tire noise. It's a Conti tire which was new well over a year and a half ago but has little wear. I should spring for a Metzler.

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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old Aug 13th, 2013, 12:19 pm
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Noise

I had the same thing at 50mph and found it was from the new front fender extension I installed. At that speed it started flapping side-to-side at super speed and created a howling sound....drove me crazy! Finally wore in and went away. I also had a set of Michelin Pilot roads that howled at any speed.

[COLOR=DarkOliveGreen]Jim S.
[/COLOR] * Everyone crashes. Some get back on. Some don't. Some can't.
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