Transmission go KACHUNK! - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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post #1 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-02-2012, 12:37 PM Thread Starter
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Transmission go KACHUNK!

Hello everyone!

My bike is a 2004. I was riding along the other day and as I was taking off from a parking lot, the motorcycle made a loud *KACHUNK!* sound. It didn't drive very well after that but I was able to make it down the road one block before it completely gave out. Now, whenever I simply put it in gear, I heard a grinding noise. I am thinking the transmission blew up.

I am quite the newbie when it comes to motorcycles. My question is if I have to have the transmission replaced, approximately how much might I be looking at for parts alone? I realize the labor will vary depending on where I take it but I am trying to gauge if it is even worth getting this fixed or saving that money towards a newer bike.

Thanks for your help!
Keith.
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post #2 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-02-2012, 12:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sabian131 View Post
Hello everyone!

My bike is a 2004. I was riding along the other day and as I was taking off from a parking lot, the motorcycle made a loud *KACHUNK!* sound. It didn't drive very well after that but I was able to make it down the road one block before it completely gave out. Now, whenever I simply put it in gear, I heard a grinding noise. I am thinking the transmission blew up.

I am quite the newbie when it comes to motorcycles. My question is if I have to have the transmission replaced, approximately how much might I be looking at for parts alone? I realize the labor will vary depending on where I take it but I am trying to gauge if it is even worth getting this fixed or saving that money towards a newer bike.

Thanks for your help!
Keith.
Did you ever lube the drive shaft splines? They could have sheered off.

They would be easier to check than internal engine parts. Just follow the spline lube procedure (I don't have a link on hand, searchable @ the top) and inspect your splines.

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post #3 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-02-2012, 12:44 PM
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Does the grinding come from beneath you, or behind you. If it is behind you (near the rear wheel), it might be the rear splines. Unfortunately, one of the big issues with our bikes comes from improper lube of the rear splines on the drive shaft. This is a factory issue, and if not checked/remedied, could result in the symptoms you described.

Search the forums for 'spline lube' for lengthy discussions about this problem (and a lazy Nebraska farm boy).

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post #4 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-02-2012, 12:47 PM
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If you are saying when you put it in gear the bike makes noise and does not move...but makes no noise when you pull in the clutch or take it out of gear, you likely stripped the drive splines in the rear of the shaft.

For this you'll need a new/used drive shaft, and perhaps the drive coupler thingy in the final drive.

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post #5 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-04-2012, 12:15 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks, everyone, for your replies. The problem sounds like it is beneath, not behind. There is no noise with the bike in neutral. Even while holding in the clutch, though, the bike makes a noise when put into gear.

Unfortunately I am not aware of the spines and the need to keep the lubricated, but it is something I will take a look at. I have a manual for the bike. I imagine it is mentioned in there?
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post #6 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-04-2012, 01:01 PM
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If the sound is coming from below you, that can be deseeving. The drive shaft comes off the bevel gear (right below you) & with the shaft being not very long it can be hard to determine. I would remove the drive shaft & inspect it first. It is NOT very common for the actual transmission to faiul on this bike.
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post #7 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-04-2012, 01:50 PM
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Also even if the clutch lever is pulled in there is enough friction in the clutches to turn the drive shaft but in neutral it turns nothing .the most common transmission problem is usually shifter related and if it is dropping in gear it probably isn't transmission related. Kanuck is telling you right it may be deceiving as to where you think the noise is coming from.Put it on the centerstand and put it in gear and stand off to the side and listen closely,and while its up there pull off the wheel and final drive even if it is the trans you will have to do this eventually.




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post #8 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-04-2012, 01:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sabian131 View Post
Thanks, everyone, for your replies. The problem sounds like it is beneath, not behind. There is no noise with the bike in neutral. Even while holding in the clutch, though, the bike makes a noise when put into gear.

Unfortunately I am not aware of the spines and the need to keep the lubricated, but it is something I will take a look at. I have a manual for the bike. I imagine it is mentioned in there?

All shaft drive bikes have "splines" that need to be lubricated. The owners manual only mentions it in the Periodic Maintance Schedule.

Usually if something let's go in the transmission it makes noise all the time. If you put it in gear and the bike no go...it be the splines, as you'd have to strip off every tooth from a gear to keep it from not getting turned.

Trust us. Some of us have gone through the same thing. As I'm not there to examine it, I would not totally dimiss it as a gearbox issue.... But I'd put money on it being the drive splines....

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post #9 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-04-2012, 02:03 PM
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Unfortunately I am not aware of the spines and the need to keep the lubricated, but it is something I will take a look at. I have a manual for the bike. I imagine it is mentioned in there?
Maybe that explains why you have been a member since 2008 and yet only have 2 posts to your credit. The splines are the number one recommendation that everyone tells you about when you first introduce yourself under the newbie thread. That may be the most written about subject on this forum. It is not overly difficult to check and to lube yourself by following the outline that can be located on here by using the "search" tab found in the upper portion of the home forum page. I wish you good luck and hope the splines are not the actual problem after all the information given on this forum concerning that particular weak spot in the Vulcan. It is repeated so often because of the importance of the issue in maintaining a safe and reliable machine. Good luck.

I am not trying to put anyone down but rather wish to put emphasis on the excellent information available here if anyone is really interested. I have learned so much and continue to realize how much I don't know about the Vulcan but can learn from just reading and asking questions. Maintenance manuals are on free download and the search tab is ready to point out a wealth of knowledge just by the simple click of the mouse and keyboard.

and always remember, "Ride until you rot!"
**Really not sure if the Big "C" is back right now
but having to face the fact that this is a lifetime routine
going forward. Five operations done and it still continues.

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Last edited by Vulcan2000; 05-04-2012 at 02:12 PM.
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post #10 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-04-2012, 03:27 PM
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Well there's likely a whole host of members that don't really come here until they have a problem..........

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