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Engine Noise: The High Pitch Whine!

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by Steve C, Apr 13, 2019.

  1. Steve C

    Steve C XS650 Member

    Hey everybody. I'm new to the forum and just picked up a cherry 1983 XS with just under 2800 miles. Its a real survivor. The seller shared with me a video of the bike running with the mystery whine. Tried to upload the video but wouldn't let me. Sounds just like a couple other clips I've seen on this forum. I thought 'How bad could it be with such low miles???' Stuck starter was my first thought. This thing is truly untouched, perfect wire harness, everything intact, absolutely 0 signs of use which is what you'd expect with such low miles.
    I drained the oil and it looked ok. Then I got into the filters. Sump filter looked ok, no metal. The pump filter was my first clue, there was a little bit of metal flake in it. Told myself 'It's prolly just break-in debris...how many oil changes could it have possibly had with such low miles?'. So, removed the clutch and checked out the starter Bendix. It was perfect. The spring clip in the right place and very good tension. Well balls. The noise is coming from something right? Lets get forensic. So then pulled the primary gears off the crank, removed the spark plugs and turned the engine over on the starter. Well hey hey...that crank shaft is NOT supposed to wobble like that. Double balls. The dreaded pressed crank syndrome.
    Looks like this might have been a warranty issue that went undiagnosed. I can just imagine the previous owners rolling it out of the garage each spring, firing it up and going 'Yep, noise is still there' and rolling her back into the garage.
    Any who. Picked it up for $800 so I don't feel too bad and I like dirty fingernails.
    So after I finish the RD 350 endurance racer currently on my lift, engine comes out and gets torn down. Crank & cam go off the Hughs for the 277 treatment.
    I've read though a few threads that seem to reference the same issue so thought I'd share.
    TwoManyXS1Bs, grizld1, Jim and 2 others like this.
  2. gggGary

    gggGary Stop that! Top Contributor XS650.com Supporter

    Welcome to Bedlam! Bummer on the crank. Real unusual at such low miles bet there's a story there. Would be great to see that video!


    Jim likes this.
  3. Steve C

    Steve C XS650 Member

    So they are iPhone videos and when I try to attach it won’t let me.
    Jim likes this.
  4. Jim

    Jim "No...Try not. Do ... or do not. There is no try." Top Contributor XS650.com Supporter

    You can't directly attach a video. It has to be hosted somewhere else. Upload it to Youtube, then attach it.
    TwoManyXS1Bs and gggGary like this.
  5. Jim

    Jim "No...Try not. Do ... or do not. There is no try." Top Contributor XS650.com Supporter

    Oh... and welcome to the forum!! We love pics here. I'd love to see your RD also. I've owned more of them than I can remember.

    Um.... did I mention we love pics? :rolleyes:
    MaxPete, gggGary and Machine like this.
  6. Steve C

    Steve C XS650 Member

    I’ll work on getting the videos up.
    Meanwhile here’s a pic of the motor clutch side. Clean as a whistle! Pretty excited about taking this one apart.
    RD pic too. Starting from scratch so not much to see...yet! Some very pretty vapor blasted parts too.

    Attached Files:

    grizld1, gggGary and Jim like this.
  7. Steve C

    Steve C XS650 Member

    Shoot, seemed like first try didn’t have sound.
  8. Jim

    Jim "No...Try not. Do ... or do not. There is no try." Top Contributor XS650.com Supporter

    Yeah.. looks like a crank replacement is in order. Sound showed up fine on my end. We've got several members here from the Portland area.... 4 hands make muscling the engine out easier. ;)
    TwoManyXS1Bs, MaxPete and gggGary like this.
  9. Steve C

    Steve C XS650 Member

    Ya, I’ve got some bros that will work for beer
    Little heavier than an RD lump I imagine!
    MaxPete, Jim and gggGary like this.
  10. 5twins

    5twins XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    Heavy yes, but the big issue is there's nothing to grab onto. If you're alone, you can lay the bike over on it's right side and lift the frame off the motor. If you have help, I made up pipe "handles" to attach to the motor. This allows me and a helper to lift the motor like a stretcher and wiggle it in/out of the frame .....


    TwoManyXS1Bs and MaxPete like this.
  11. MaxPete

    MaxPete New knee installed and it seems pretty good! Top Contributor XS650.com Supporter

    Oooohhh...yeah, that crank wobble is certainly pretty pronounced (I wonder what the heck happened to create that issue) and the whine isn't nice either.

    I wonder if the cam timing chain tension is set too tight?

    Anyhow - crank problems with XS650s are pretty rare from what I know so there should be lots of decent replacements around.

    Jim likes this.

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