Weird combo of symptoms...Advice? - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 14 Old 03-07-2017, 03:17 PM Thread Starter
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Weird combo of symptoms...Advice?

Wasn't sure if I should post here or in the maintenance thread. And sorry this is long-winded. I tend to go heavy on the details. LOL. Anyway, I have a 2014 Vstrom 1k that I bought brand new in late 2015. I have just under 11k miles on it now. I followed proper break in procedure and so far the bike has been great. Yes, it's noisy and I was even convinced it had a rod knock for the first few hundred miles. Even took it back to the dealer so they could tell me it was normal for that engine haha

Anyway, yesterday I did an oil change and chain maintenance (clean, lube, tighten) but didn't get a chance to ride afterwards, so this morning was my first ride in a few days. In the past week or so I have noticed this new metallic-sounding rattle, like a bolt or something was loose. But it also kind of sounded like it was coming from the engine. It was hard to tell and hard to replicate when not riding. It only happened at mid to high RPM range, like 4500-5000 and up. So during the oil change I checked all the bolts I had easy access to, checked all the plastics in the dash, etc, just trying to find the rattle. Couldn't find anything obvious so I figured I would see how it sounded when I rode it.

Alright, so:

Concern number 1: during the oil change there were a couple of larger shards of metal stuck to the magnet in the drain plug. Noticeably larger than the fine metal "dust" that was stuck on the magnet during the 3 oil changes I did during the break-in period. This wasn't "dust" but was more like shards/splinters. That was disconcerting. I do flog the bike pretty hard with some regularity, accelerating hard and shifting at red line. Generally spirited riding. But I wouldn't expect that to cause splinters of metal to be in my oil. When I'm not riding like a wild man, I'm generally just doing commuting on it.

Concern number 2: for whatever reason (probably a habit born from parking on hills, honestly), I always leave my bike in gear when I park. I've never had an issue with the clutch disengaging when I start it, but this morning I did. I pulled the clutch in and had so much resistance I could barely push the bike out of my garage. Then I went to start the bike and even with the clutch pulled all the way in, there was so much resistance the engine barely turned over and the bike lurched forward. Had to put it in neutral to start her up. First time that's ever happened in the time I've owned it. After the bike was on, the issue seemed to go away.

Concern number 3: the little vibration I have noticed the past week hasn't gone away and seems like it may have gotten worse. I noticed that it was still there as soon as I started riding. And then, as I shifted from 1st into 2nd and let the clutch lever out and rolled on the throttle there was noticeable series of CLUNK-CLUNK-CLUNKs that I could feel in my right hand through the throttle. Like it was coming from the engine or maybe the clutch. Power was not applied evenly and it seemed like the bike was lurching in conjunction with each CLUNK. To me, it seemed like it started as the vibration and then changed halfway through into the clunking, but I guess it could be the vibration and the clunking are two different things.

When I get home from work I'm going to read through the the troubleshooting section of my Suzuki Service Manual and see if I find anything that seems to fit my symptoms but I thought in the meantime I would get some opinions on here as well. And I definitely would like to know if anyone else has found metal slivers in their oil after the break-in period.
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post #2 of 14 Old 03-07-2017, 05:28 PM
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The only thing that seems strange to me is "3 oil changes during break-in period".
Why would you do such a thing? The bike comes from the factory with special oil in the engine, with ton of additives, to do the engine break-in. It's not supposed to be changed before the schedule. It's now hard to say if "normal" oil did the damage you're talking about.
You need to go to your dealer and tell him all. I wouldn't ride the bike before that. Who knows how much further you can extend the damage.

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Last edited by bosnjo; 03-07-2017 at 05:31 PM.
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post #3 of 14 Old 03-07-2017, 05:35 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by bosnjo View Post
The only thing that seems strange to me is "3 oil changes during break-in period".
Why would you do such a thing? The bike comes from the factory with special oil in the engine, with ton of additives, to do the engine break-in. It's not supposed to be changed before the schedule. It's now hard to say if "normal" oil did the damage you're talking about.
All I can tell you is I followed a guide I read, either on here or in my Suzuki Service Manual. I think I did a change every 250 miles using a special break-in oil (Motul brand....I think mineral oil, I'd have to look), for the first 800 miles, while keeping it under 4500 rpms. You're the first person I've ever heard say bikes comes from the factory with a special oil for purpose of break-in period. Not saying you're wrong, just saying I did a ton of research on proper break-in before I followed the protocol that I did and I never saw that info come up in all my reading.
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post #4 of 14 Old 03-07-2017, 05:37 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by bosnjo View Post
You need to go to your dealer and tell him all. I wouldn't ride the bike before that. Who knows how much further you can extend the damage.
I cleared the break-in procedure with my mechanic at the dealer where I bought the bike before I commenced.
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post #5 of 14 Old 03-07-2017, 05:49 PM
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A minority of modern engines come with break in oil. V-Stroms don't. It doesn't hurt at all to change oil early. There is nothing special about the factory oil. Engines that come with break in oil also come with a warning in the manual not to change it early. There is a lot of old information out there that doesn't apply any more, especially from oil companies. Oil changing was not a contributor to the situation and oil discussions belong in the Big Oil Thread so let's leave it out of further discussion.

The symptoms reported in this case don't fit any typical situation so it will be a case of doing some detective work to find out what is going on. Methinks Realshelby will be the best detective for this case.

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post #6 of 14 Old 03-07-2017, 05:53 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by greywolf View Post
A minority of modern engines come with break in oil. V-Stroms don't. It doesn't hurt at all to change oil early. There is nothing special about the factory oil. Engines that come with break in oil also come with a warning in the manual not to change it early. There is a lot of old information out there that doesn't apply any more, especially from oil companies.
Thank you for clarifying, I appreciate it. I thoroughly read my Suzuki Service Manual before commencing the break-in procedure and didn't see anything about not changing the oil for a certain period of time.
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post #7 of 14 Old 03-07-2017, 06:40 PM
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My dealer told me about the special oil when I picked my bike up, but they sell a lot of different brands so it is possible he was mistaken. I left mine in for the recommended period anyways just to be safe. I doubt that is related to your issue anyways.

Those metal bits do sound disturbing to me, did you keep them? Do they seem to be aluminum, or a harder steel, like from a gear tooth maybe? I suppose they would not stick to magnet if aluminum.

Is there any chance something was dropped into your airbox or in with the oil at some point like a small screw?
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post #8 of 14 Old 03-07-2017, 06:53 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Bugzy View Post
Those metal bits do sound disturbing to me, did you keep them? Do they seem to be aluminum, or a harder steel, like from a gear tooth maybe? I suppose they would not stick to magnet if aluminum.

Is there any chance something was dropped into your airbox or in with the oil at some point like a small screw?
I didn't keep them. I'm not sure how something would have got in there? Unless it was during the warranty work on the wiring harness that the dealer performed...otherwise I haven't take anything apart on the bike yet, other than oil changes and removing the wheels for a tire change.
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post #9 of 14 Old 03-07-2017, 06:59 PM
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For the clutch issue, do a search here on cleaning behind the front sprocket cover, slave cylinder, push rod, etc. Good idea to clean there every oil change - even more if you ride often in dirt/mud. Check your clutch fluid level and make sure it's not leaking. If you still have a problem, try bleeding from the slave cylinder end. I had similar issues, twice. Once was because of too much gunk behind the cover, another time i had air and bleeding resolved it.

Regarding the metal shards and the noise, that doesn't sound too good. I've never seen anything more than fine dust. There have been a few reports of broken cam gears on the 1000's. Rare, and usually happen after valve checks - most likely due to improper reassembly of scissor gears.

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post #10 of 14 Old 03-08-2017, 07:57 AM
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Take a real close look at your chain and sprockets. I know your mileage is low, but the noise of a rusty link(s), worn sprockets or a improper rivet job on the master can make a heck of a racket.

And as far as parking in gear, it's SOP for me every time and has been on every bike I have ever owned.
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Last edited by Motor7; 03-08-2017 at 08:00 AM.
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