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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-20-2010, 01:38 PM Thread Starter
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several questions

New owner (almost 2 weeks now). been reading here alot so forgive me if i have missed some threads, and I have searched, but my skills with froums search engines can frustrate me sometimes.

So far I seem to be getting about 55MPG, and from my understanding that is OK (havent hit the hyway yet, just rural 55MPH roads) for mostly intown and some 55MPH riding. When i start my bike and only for about 15 minutes (seems to me) its kinda gassy smelling (no choke on). I "dont" think i have noticed it when its warm and been on a bit. Nomral? its not a strong leak smell, just somewhat noticable when im at a stop light.

When riding every once and awhile (not often, maybe 5-8 times in about 300 miles of driving) i hear a CHIRP? from the rear.. almost like a split second tire squeal. Its not noticable at all other then the sound, no slow down or jerks or anything. Speed doesnt seem to effect it, happnes at 25 or 55 MPH. Again its rare, its one of those "did i hear that or not" sounds.. maybe even other cars... but as i have heard it a few times I'm wondering. rear wheel is full (hehe air and was just serviced) i havent done the splines yet (this weekend, yes i know, should have been first thing).

Also at 55 i notice a chain like rattle from behind me. this is not noticable at all at 25MPH but at 55 if i turn my head so my ears (or one ear) is pointed back i hear it.. It reminds me of a tow chain dragging on pavement, but not as loud. Maybe the tools in the tool pouch? (easy one to test i guess, take um out for a ride).

And last (for now) I notice on bumps a wierd tiny clunk. I was figureing it was maybe the 2nd stand bouncing, I have cheked some basics (suspension and such) for anything lose, cant find anything. This is almost un noticable except on hard bumps. I think its the second (bigger 2 legged) kickstand, at least it seems like it.

forgive all the questions, Im one of those guys if brakes sqweek I gotta fix it even if its not a problem, if a washer fluid light is on in my car I almost dont drive it till i fill it, so kinda anal about "unknown" stuff. Once i know what it is, even if its not a problem I kinda try things to 'fix it" so to speak. You guys have many miles on these beasts. I'm cycle less for the last 10-12 years.
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-20-2010, 01:48 PM
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Originally Posted by clok1966 View Post
I notice on bumps a wierd tiny clunk. I was figureing it was maybe the 2nd stand bouncing, I have cheked some basics (suspension and such) for anything lose, cant find anything. This is almost un noticable except on hard bumps. I think its the second (bigger 2 legged) kickstand, at least it seems like it.
Could it be the front or rear shocks bottoming out? Any oil leaks or obviously bad seals on the front? What setting are the rear shocks on? Do you know if there is any air in the rear shocks, and what the pressure is? How much load (passengers and gear) on the bike?

I'm keepin' all the left over parts. I'm gonna use 'em to build another bike!
"Black Beauty"
1989 VN750 acquired December, 2008, 6,711 miles
Currently 23,298 miles

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1987 VN750 project bike, acquired August, 2009, 33,000 miles and balancer sticking out of the case, currently awaiting attention and parts
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-20-2010, 02:25 PM Thread Starter
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Im not 100% sure but im 95% sure its not bottoming out, I believe my shocks are set at 4? its more of a "sharp" bump that the noise shows, not a deep one. Its so small its only there when i "look or listen" for it, dont even notice it when I'm not thinking about it (most of the problems listed are like that). I had a motercycle mcehanic (friend who i trust and is good with bikes) test drive it before i bought it. he was very impressed, said the motor sounded great (mentioned it had less chain noise then other vulcans he had worked on) in fact his first comment was "nice bike, when you get ready to sell it let me know" hehe. but he was listneing to the engine and drivetrain, and only road it about 20 minutes (some in town and one hyway speed trip).

I'm probebbly just paraniod more then anything.
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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-20-2010, 03:18 PM
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Are you new to VN750's or new to bikes overall? With an older bike you can't be worried about every tiny clank and ting. Finding out what ones to worry about is part of the fun though. You did good asking us here. Here are my opinions:

The fuel: get it checked. The last thing you need is your new-to-you bike enfuego over a simple correctable leak. If you're having trouble locating the source of the fuel leak, light a lighter then sniff your way to the source. When you find it, I'm pretty sure you'll know. Just kidding. If you search for a while and can't find anything, take it to someone. Try searching soon after you smell it. If you're on the road, pull into a parking lot real quick. I hope you're not mistaking that gas small for an exhaust smell - we get those. Anyway if you find something take pics and post here. Somebody will know.

The Chirp: for now don't worry about it, it could be anything - even, like you said, something not on your bike. The infrequency makes me think this. If it gets aggrevated (louder, more frequent, etc.) get it checked. Locate source, take pics, post here.

The Chain Noise: they're your tools in the tool box. If you want to get rid of it, get a small nylon bag (old shaving kit bags work well), put the tools in it, then stuff the bag in your tool box. Don't ride without tools. Also, if you can hear that just by turning your head, are you wearing a helmet? Oh and don't take pics, don't post here - its the tools.

The Bumps: I think its your center stand. Clamp or tape the center stand to the frame somewhere, careful not to interrupt any moving parts, then take the same bump. No noise, you nailed it. Noise, you didn't.

Overall just keep your wits about you and make good decisions. Remember to be safe but also remember its supposed to be fun. Relax a little out there and if you feel so compelled - take pics, post here.

Good luck bro...

Last edited by LibertyPilot; 04-20-2010 at 03:35 PM.
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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-20-2010, 04:11 PM Thread Starter
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I know alot of its paranoia on my part But i figure safe then sorry, and there is a weatlh of knowledge to be tapped here. No, not new to bikes, but then again, kinda. I have owned minibikes (when i was young) 3 wheelers (in the days before the goverment and every parent who couldnt bother to make sure there kids has some sense had outlawed um) Motorcycles (my first was a 66 Susuki (err, duel sport i guess? had a swappable rear sprocket, one for offroad (about 40 mph max) and one for onrad (60MPH max)) i road motorcycles from about 78 to 93ish. Started with dirt bikes (raced some yamaha YZ's in the early 80's at the state level ) moved to street bikes, traded my pride and Joy (huge mistake) a 70 Buick GS for a brand new 1982 Kaw 750LTDtwin. Loved that bike, but had no car (so it got road alot in all weather). But i layed it down in 83 at about 40MPH on pavement wearing nothing but tennis shoes, jeans, and a t-shirt, ended with a very hot muffler burning into me, broke a bone or two and had a heck of a time getting it off me.. Road rash and lots of new scars,... sad part the mental scar's where much worse then the phsyical ones. I quit riding that day, bought a car and didnt ride again till about 89. I then had several bikes, used ot buy one in spring, get my permit, drive till fall and sell it. had a 82 Honda 750CB, a 82 V45Magna, a Susuki (err 650 forget anyting else) a 82 yamaha 650 Special II (wow, that bike has some engine noise, but seemed to go forever, sold it to a friend, he still rides it to this day).

i then screwed up my back very bad and kinda quit riding in about 93ish. And just got my vulcan about 2 weeks ago. So not new , but been a long time. so new to the vulcan 750 but not bikes. Err sorry for life story.

I know most my problems are probebly easy to figure out, I'm just at work and bored (slow day today) so picking you guys brain. Gloing to clamp the 2nd kickstand up and see if that fixes it, I'm pretty sure its that. Tools, easy one to check too, just take um out for a bit and see.

The gas is probebly the one that bothers me most. I noticed it when it was cold and just starting riding, problem is I normally notice it right when i start off for someplace and do the "i will check it when i get back" and forget as once its warm I dont notice it. it could in all honesty be cars areound me, not a major town, but a fair size one for my neck of the world. I have looked for leaks and i dont see anything. But i have only looked when its warmed up.

I know everything makes noise sometimes... When its a new (to me) bike, I am magnifying them into something far worse then they are.

to be honest after reading here I bought a volt gauge (this weekend with the shaft lube), and am worried about the dampners and the rectifier.. my bike has 21,000 so I think im expecting problems. I think i hear noises that arent there.
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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-20-2010, 04:31 PM
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On my 750 I noticed one time a rattling noise coming from behind me and it turned out to be my license plate rattling, even though I had it tightened down really good, but only with two bolts. I added two more bolts, probably on the bottom, and that rattle went away. Just something else to look for.

On my 1500 not long after I got it, I had new tires put on. The shop put the exhaust bracket bolt in from the wrong side, and although it held the exhaust just fine, the protruding end was now pointing at my swingarm. Well, it was no big deal even with me sitting on it, but as I was riding it around the hill country after I left the shop, I started hearing a chirp every time I hit a bump. I pulled over to the first area I could get off the road and noticed that bolt was rubbing against my swingarm and had rubbed a nice scratch through the paint and was now metal to metal. Luckily the took kit had everything I needed to reverse the bolt, but I went straight back to the dealership to have a chat! Just one more thing to look at on your bike. Make sure that when your suspension is compressed that nothing is going to rub.

As far as the gas smell, you couldn't have much of a leak if you are getting 55 mpg! It could be fumes from the vent hose out of the bottom of your tank, but take the above advice and look it over good. A small gas leak can be hard to find since gas evaporates so quickly, but see if you can find it. We don't need any more flame photos!

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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-20-2010, 05:31 PM
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my rattle was the plate also when i only had the top bolts in my plate kept cracking right under the bolts i just drilles holes in some flat bar to reinforce the plate

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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-20-2010, 07:50 PM
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Originally Posted by vulcanjoe View Post
my rattle was the plate also when i only had the top bolts in my plate kept cracking right under the bolts i just drilles holes in some flat bar to reinforce the plate
You could also cut a piece of old rubber mud flap to put behind the whole license plate with 4 bolts to reinforce it and stop any squeaks.

Check bottom left side of goats belly (exhaust cross over) to determine if the rubber bumper, which cushions center stand from rubbing, is in place.

Here is a link to some info about the suspension:
You seem sure the suspension is not bottoming out, but you may pick up some useful tips here anyway.


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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-21-2010, 11:28 AM
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The chirrrrrrrp or whirrrr could be normal at certain RPMs and gear you're in. The VN750 likes to run at higher RPMs than your typical V-twin out there. If this is the case dropping into a lower gear or accelerating to higher RPMs will make it disappear. Just considering the most probable and simple things first.

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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-21-2010, 11:52 AM Thread Starter
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Small update, the chain rattle sound was the tools, Thanks for that head up. All other tests will be later this week weather permiting. I looked hard for gas leak and cannot see anything at all. But I did smell it again with no cars in area so it has to be the bike. I'm leaning towards the gas vent. I "THINK" the reason its been random is my tank level. I was looking for it last few days when tank was half full or less and didnt notice it. Last night i filled it and noticed it. So I'm thinking vent as I simply cant see anything leaking.

new question (sorta) gas guage, I'm judgeing my fuel mileage by filling my tank, driving it and noteing miles, then refilling it, 125 miles and aprox 2 gallons (cant be 100% acurate, may have put a little less or more gas in) errr, question. It seems my gas guage drops really really fast once its gets to about 1/4 tank. I am assuming the guage is proportinal the whole way like a car guage, maybe not? I put about 100+ miles (roughly in 1/2-3/4 a tank, then maybe 15-20 till its almost to the notch before red. That normal? To me it seems the gas guage drops much faster in the last half or last 1/4 tank.

Also, once it drops below the first Notch after E, do i need t use the reserve? or the Tank guage is for "normal" on the petcock, and reserve is still a reserve after the gas guage read E (man, I hope I'm not as confusing as I sound to myslef). Dont ever plan on running her to E, but life throws curve balls at the best layed plans. Best tt understand how it works before, instead of during some long trip.
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