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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
For the past few weeks.. I've been hearing a "rubbing" noise from the rear. I hear it most at slower speeds of 30mph or under. It speeds up and slows down with the speed I'm traveling.

Its def not the rear brakes. I've ruled that out. It sounds similar to a "metal on metal" rubbing. It's been getting increasingly louder. Perhaps something is not properly lubricated?

Could it be the infamous belt chirp I've been hearing about? The only thing that makes me think its not the belt.. is that I think the sound is coming from both sides of the rear wheel. Perhaps wheel bearings?

The bike only has 2080 miles on it. And it was serviced about a month ago when it had 900 miles on it.

Any thoughts as to what it might be? My dealer is 90 miles away.. so it's a little inconvenient to bring it there for every little noise...


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Shoot some WD40 in where the spacer is. If it goes away it is something in there, be it a bearing or just some grease needed somewhere. I had a squeak that disappeared when i used WD40 then reappeared in a couple weeks and i found it to be the belt was too tight. the factory spec is very tight to begin with and every mechanic i have talked to says it should be looser than that. And most everyone that has played with their belts ended up setting it looser. I grease everything real good when i have the wheel off. And aside from occasional belt chirp, which itself is gone since i sprayed some silicone on it a few weeks ago, i never have any noises. But i sure had them with the belt tight, as have many owners.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
It's funny.. the noises started AFTER I had my first service! I don't have a jack.. or I'd lift it and try to pin point the noise. It's definitely not an occasional chirp tho. It's constant...


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Discussion Starter #4
Shoot some WD40 in where the spacer is. If it goes away it is something in there, be it a bearing or just some grease needed somewhere. I had a squeak that disappeared when i used WD40 then reappeared in a couple weeks and i found it to be the belt was too tight. the factory spec is very tight to begin with and every mechanic i have talked to says it should be looser than that. And most everyone that has played with their belts ended up setting it looser. I grease everything real good when i have the wheel off. And aside from occasional belt chirp, which itself is gone since i sprayed some silicone on it a few weeks ago, i never have any noises. But i sure had them with the belt tight, as have many owners.
Daz.. I did try giving a very small spurt of WD40 into the spacers on both sides of the wheel bearing/axel. I only took it for a short ride around the block.. but it seemed to work. I wonder if this is a sign of some bigger issue.. or if it was just a freak thing. What do you think?
 

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Well, like i said, mine did this and WD40 fixed it for a while (just used it as a test) but the real issue that fixed it for good was the belt was way too tight and i loosened it. The factory spec is crazy tight. Try loosening the axl, turn the right adjuster nut counterclockwise about 1/12th of a turn, (1/2 the distance of the distance between 2 joining peaks on the nut) and turn the left one slightly more, just a hair more, like the thickness of the cardboard of a shoe box. I would wait however till the noise starts again which it will once the WD40 wears off.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
So you think the belt tension could cause this? I don't spray the belt with WD40.. I put just a tiny tiny blast on the axle. I guess that's why I'm suspecting wheel bearings. But I'm far from being a mechanic.. lol


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So, if you use the belt tension tool, what is the spec that we should use if its not the overly tight Triumph spec?
 

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I simply go by feel. I got my "finger" tool calibrated by checking how it felt when the bike was new, then after a warranty belt was installed and correctly adjusted by mickey who like every other mechanic suggests looser, and also pushed against a small postage scale to see what 10 Lbs felt like. I Very quickly i got a good sense of what the triumph spec feels like and where it wanted it by feel. Feel the belt tension on a new bike. Push your index finger at the bottom side of the belt 1/2 way between the sprockets. Remember that tension and IMO keep your belt a little looser than that, but not when cold as they say. I adjust it a bit looser than factory cold spec when the belt is hot.
 

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For the past few weeks.. I've been hearing a "rubbing" noise from the rear. I hear it most at slower speeds of 30mph or under. It speeds up and slows down with the speed I'm traveling.

Its def not the rear brakes. I've ruled that out. It sounds similar to a "metal on metal" rubbing. It's been getting increasingly louder. Perhaps something is not properly lubricated?

Could it be the infamous belt chirp I've been hearing about? The only thing that makes me think its not the belt.. is that I think the sound is coming from both sides of the rear wheel. Perhaps wheel bearings?

The bike only has 2080 miles on it. And it was serviced about a month ago when it had 900 miles on it.

Any thoughts as to what it might be? My dealer is 90 miles away.. so it's a little inconvenient to bring it there for every little noise...


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I had this exact problem and the noise appeared 5 miles after a service appointment. They took off the back wheel and after they put it back on the noise appeared - I did the WD-40 thing Dazco suggested but never really figured out if it worked or not because the noise was a bit finicky in coming and going - but on a long ride I stopped and did WD-40 several times with no effect. Then after squeaking for a 130 mile ride - it wouldn't squeak at all when I took it back in for service the next day. I was VERY insistent that they take the wheel back off, grease everything properly, align the wheel properly, tighten the belt properly and after some grumbling that they had already done all that - they did it again, the manager overseeing it himself - and what do you know - it went away and has been 5,000 miles now and not a single scrape. But I know exactly what you are talking about - it is a wheel rotation noise, the frequency is with the rotation of the wheel and is kind of a rasping squeak, like metal on metal and loud enough to turn heads from folks on the sidewalk. It's not the wheel bearing - but out where the drive pulley rotates - good luck!
 

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I've had a frustrating experience regarding this. The exact same noise started around 2000 miles (I've done 3100 mi so far). Took it to the dealer last month here in Frederick MD. The chief mechanic drive it. So did the dealer himself. They just told me all they could hear was popping on decel. I insisted the noise was coming from the rear and it was whirring sound. They explained it was something called the balancer that works with the throttle action and the rear wheel and might make a noise as it adjusts to accel/decel.

The noise is still there and I am not happy with it coz at times it drowns the beautiful roar of the engine. To make things worse for me, the techs at the dealer must have played with the throttle balance or something coz the bike doesn't slow down (hardly any engine braking) when I let go of the throttle in 2nd or 3rd gear....and the roar is gone too. It sounds smooth which pisses me off.

Do I take it back to the dealer and ask them to take the rear wheel off and grease everything properly as well as realign the belt?


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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
ok.. so I brought my bike back to the dealer to have my noise checked out. I explained that the noise went away after spraying WD40 on the wheel bearing area. The service department was concerned when I told them about it.. and said they'd like to check it out to be certain there wasn't a wheel bearing issue.

Here's what they told me:

They noticed a streak of the WD40 had dribbled down onto the belt pulley.. and explained that this is probably the reason the noise went away. After pulling the wheel and checking everything, they said the noise I was hearing was likely a belt chirp. He told me that the belt tension was slightly off.. but not enough to alarm him.. and that there was nothing else wrong with it. He did take his time.. and made sure it was aligned to spec this time tho. He also said that Triumph's specs recommend the belt to be on the tighter side.

He also told me that the belt chirp is a common issue.. with no known "fix". Its all about getting the sweet spot with the belt alignment and tension.

The noise was starting to come back just before I brought it in for service.. and now it's gone. So hopefully the re-alignment of the belt will keep it under control. That noise can be very annoying!
 

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So, if you use the belt tension tool, what is the spec that we should use if its not the overly tight Triumph spec?
The spec is .350 with 10 lb tension on the belt tension tool. I set mine at 3/8" because my tool is calibrated in inches not thousandths. At .375 (3/8") it seems snug but fine and I can't see or hear any adverse effects after tightening the belt and aligning the rear wheel. With 600+ miles on it after adjustment, everything is AOK. As far as being too tight, it is still at the factory spec and I know of at least two Harley models that spec 3/8" also. I think 3/8" is fine, but on the theory that a little loose certainly can't hurt, I'll probably set the deflection at 1/2" on the next go-around.

Incidentally, mine is a 2012 and I tightened the belt and aligned the rear wheel according to the procedure in the service manual and everything worked well. There is some discussion that the alignment procedure doesn't work on pre-2012 models, but I don't know if that's correct or not.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Ok.. so it's been about 2 weeks.. and the noise is back again! I have to be honest.. I love this bike.. but this chirping noise is driving me up a wall.. and I'm ready to get rid of this bike. I'm starting to wish I never traded my speedy.

I'm not even certain that it's the belt that's making the noise. Perhaps is the rear brakes.. and not the belt? It sounds like a squeak.. like a bad spring on a bed mattress or something. But definitely sounds like metal on metal. I don't know what else I can do. Any suggestions?

Perhaps I should demand that my dealer replace the belt and pulley (even tho they said there's nothing wrong)?

The dealer I bought the bike from is 2 hours away from me. There is another dealer close to me.. does anyone know if my bike will still be covered by warranty if I bring it to a dealer other than the one I bought the bike from? or will another dealer charge me?
 

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Have someone hold the bike up straight and lay on the ground looking up at the belt from the bottom. Push straight up on the belt right at the point it clears the pulley so that you push it below the beveled edge of the pulley. If you feel any of the beveled edge catching the pulley as you do this then its the belt alignment this test does work much better with the bike in the air and the swing arm extended but as long as you are able to push it far enough it should work.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Have someone hold the bike up straight and lay on the ground looking up at the belt from the bottom. Push straight up on the belt right at the point it clears the pulley so that you push it below the beveled edge of the pulley. If you feel any of the beveled edge catching the pulley as you do this then its the belt alignment this test does work much better with the bike in the air and the swing arm extended but as long as you are able to push it far enough it should work.
I've been back to my dealer.. and he insists that the belt is aligned properly. He says "some bikes are just noisy" and there's not much he can do about it. That's unacceptable to me. It's a really annoying noise.. and if there's no fix.. than this bike is as good as gone. I didn't pay all that money to ride a bike that annoys me!
 

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I've been back to my dealer.. and he insists that the belt is aligned properly. He says "some bikes are just noisy" and there's not much he can do about it. That's unacceptable to me. It's a really annoying noise.. and if there's no fix.. than this bike is as good as gone. I didn't pay all that money to ride a bike that annoys me!
Don't get so upset, it's a simple fix. Get a can of food grade silicone and spray a little on the toothed part of the belt. I did this a month and a 1/2 ago using very little and not a single chirp since. And by the way, perfect adjustment does not eliminate it on every bike, and like the dealer said and it's true, every bike is different in this regard. But a quick spray and done. You'll forget it even did this.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Don't get so upset, it's a simple fix. Get a can of food grade silicone and spray a little on the toothed part of the belt. I did this a month and a 1/2 ago using very little and not a single chirp since. And by the way, perfect adjustment does not eliminate it on every bike, and like the dealer said and it's true, every bike is different in this regard. But a quick spray and done. You'll forget it even did this.
I'm starting to think it's not a belt noise. I've tried spraying the belt.. tho not with silicone. I used a belt dressing that was specifically made to eliminate belt noise on motorcycles. It did nothing. I'll buy some silicone today... and give it a try. Do you have a specific recommendation?

As for "not getting upset".. i've been dealing with this noise for over a month.. and I'm getting really pissed off. Riding is supposed to be enjoyable.. not upsetting. This noise is driving me crazy! And it's embarrassing too. Every time I roll to a stop light.. I feel like people are staring at me because of the noise.
 

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Just be sure to get food grade. The other stuff has acetone in it that can eat paint and plastics. Belt dressing as far as i know isn't really made to eliminate noise, but more for use on toothless V type belts to keep them from slipping. So that may be why no worky. Give silicone a shot, and if that doesn't do it then you may have another issue. Don't know what year it is or when they implemented this, but at some point a while ago they changed the hub to a different one. Ask the dealer to look into this. There is a new part # on it and some guys had the dealer get the new hub for them at a cheap cost because while not a warranty issue, triumph is subsidizing it. I think they paid about $60 when the list is $300 or something like that.

Also, did you look at the possibility of the cush rubbers? They can make noise and you can lube them to stop it with any lube thats rubber safe.
 
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