Kawasaki VN750 Forum banner

1 - 8 of 8 Posts

·
Linkmeister Supreme
Joined
·
7,960 Posts
Discussion Starter #1

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,026 Posts
I used to own a 1980 Yamaha XS1100 Special, bought it used, and rode it on a daily basis for over 3 years. Never had the shaft drive apart. Back then I was under the impression that shaft drives on motorcycles were the same as shaft drives on cars, and did not require any maintenance, other than changing the gear oil. They could certainly be designed that way, but for some reason, motorcycle manufacturers do everything wrong. Even in 2012, they make shaft drives that destroy themselves without constant maintenance which requires removal of the entire assembly, bikes STILL do not have a real charging system, and many of them still have tube type tires. Yet with all that 19th century technology, many new bikes come with fuel injection and antilock brakes. I get a real laugh out of the idea of antilock brakes (supposedly a safety device) on a bike with tube type tires. Technology 200 years apart on the same wheel.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
619 Posts
I used to own a 1980 Yamaha XS1100 Special, bought it used, and rode it on a daily basis for over 3 years. Never had the shaft drive apart. Back then I was under the impression that shaft drives on motorcycles were the same as shaft drives on cars, and did not require any maintenance, other than changing the gear oil. They could certainly be designed that way, but for some reason, motorcycle manufacturers do everything wrong. Even in 2012, they make shaft drives that destroy themselves without constant maintenance which requires removal of the entire assembly, bikes STILL do not have a real charging system, and many of them still have tube type tires. Yet with all that 19th century technology, many new bikes come with fuel injection and antilock brakes. I get a real laugh out of the idea of antilock brakes (supposedly a safety device) on a bike with tube type tires. Technology 200 years apart on the same wheel.
Yeah but they can make loads of extra bucks on drive shafts and the like when they wear out because they are not lubed correctly from new or at all because people don't realise they have to maintain them, good side line in spares don't you think.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
11,860 Posts
Been doing a little reading over on the XS-11 forum today and run across their spline lube thread, so I had to take a look at what they recommend.
The driveshaft to final drive spline on the XS-1100 is a far different design to the Vulcan 750.
http://www.xs11.com/xs11-info/tech-tips/maintenance/oil---lubrication/62-greasing-the-driveshaft-splines.html

AND?

Not sure I see the point of this post. The driveshaft and splines on a BMW are diffrent too.

But as mentioned before several times ANY shaft drive bike needs to have the splines lubed ... Preferably with high moly grease.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,026 Posts
Actually they don't have to, they could be designed same as a car. The splines that engage the wheel would still have to be lubed, but the splines on the shaft itself could be lubed with the gear oil in the final drive on the rear (as they are on a GL1200) and by engine oil on the front. All that would be required is a slightly different design, and oil seals front and rear (like cars have)

If you are going to have a design like the Vulcan, at least you could put grease fittings on it. There could be a grease fitting on the rear coupling and on the U joint, with caps on the swing arm you could remove to get to them. The fittings would be on the shaft itself, and would spin with it. Most replacement U joints for cars and trucks have grease fittings on them.

All of our construction and landscape equipment has lots of grease fittings, one backhoe has 40 of them, and they are supposed to be lubed after every 8 hours of operation.

My Yamaha XT225 dual sport, which was made unchanged from '92 through '07, has 5 grease fittings on the rear suspension. When it was replaced by the XT250 in '08, the grease fittings disappeared, but I'll bet the lubrication intervals are still the same.

I lost my Vulcan owners manual some time ago, but I'll bet it says that the spline lube should be done by a Kawasaki dealer.

BTW, that XS1100 Special was one of my favorite bikes. It was a cruiser, it did not look like a Harley, it was comfortable, it handled very well, and it was FAST. Yet the inline four was very primitive by todays standards.

EDIT: Just look at this and tell me that is not a beautiful motorcycle.

http://www.motorcyclespecs.co.za/model/yamaha/yamaha_xs1100sf_special.htm
 

·
Linkmeister Supreme
Joined
·
7,960 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
AND?

Not sure I see the point of this post. The driveshaft and splines on a BMW are diffrent too.

But as mentioned before several times ANY shaft drive bike needs to have the splines lubed ... Preferably with high moly grease.
The point was only that the splines were different.
There was a sliding joint on driveshaft of my old GM pickup truck similar to the design of the Vulcans. I have seen similar splines on the driveshafts of larger trucks as well. I had thought the splines on other motorcycles would be the same too. I just found it interesting that the spline design was so much different.

Now I need to see what the BMW shaft and splines look like. :)
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
11,860 Posts
The point was only that the splines were different.
There was a sliding joint on driveshaft of my old GM pickup truck similar to the design of the Vulcans. I have seen similar splines on the driveshafts of larger trucks as well. I had thought the splines on other motorcycles would be the same too. I just found it interesting that the spline design was so much different.

Now I need to see what the BMW shaft and splines look like. :)
I have heard that several models with shaft drive have had some problems. Specifically with the final drive....so would guess finding some photos won't be too hard.

The one that intrigues me is the shaft drive on a single sided swingarm. Love to see one up close dissassembled. :)
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,026 Posts
I have seen one disassembled. They are called a Paralever. BMW did an ingenious job of keeping the rear end of the bike from going up and down as the pinion gear tries to climb the ring gear under full throttle, but as for the shaft itself, it's a very poor design than has to be lubed at regular intervals just like the Vulcan, and it must be disassembled to do so. No grease fittings. BMW could have done better. A lot better.

With all the talk about "new technology" I just have to wonder why manufacturers aren't using new technology that would actually make things "better" Like tubeless tires, maintenance free shaft drives, and real charging systems. Unlike FI and ABS, these things would actually make motorcycles more reliable, easier to maintain, and last longer. And they wouldn't require additional electronics.
 
1 - 8 of 8 Posts
Top