Page 2 of 5 FirstFirst 1 2 3 4 ... LastLast
Results 16 to 30 of 74

Thread: 2009 RT U-Joint Failure

  1. #16
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    1,183

    Just sayin'

    Beemergirl, I bet the prior owner of your bike, who went with the Road King, hasn't has a defective U-joint yet. Perhaps BMW should consider going to belt drives on the big Rs, like they have on some of the 650s and 800s. I know their ads use to say shaft was the only way to go, but since they haven't figured out how to make them as bullet-proof as their engines, it might be a good alternative....it works for Harley and they're pushing more weight and more torque in most instances. Good luck with the fix....glad you survived this incident.
    '14 R1200RT
    MOA #46783

  2. #17
    Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    South Kentucky
    Posts
    476
    Quote Originally Posted by Motodan View Post
    Beemergirl, I bet the prior owner of your bike, who went with the Road King, hasn't has a defective U-joint yet. Perhaps BMW should consider going to belt drives on the big Rs, like they have on some of the 650s and 800s. I know their ads use to say shaft was the only way to go, but since they haven't figured out how to make them as bullet-proof as their engines, it might be a good alternative....it works for Harley and they're pushing more weight and more torque in most instances. Good luck with the fix....glad you survived this incident.
    Has Kawasaki,Yamaha and Honda figured out how to make them bulletproof?
    Anthony S.
    2012 R1200GS

  3. #18
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    1,183
    Quote Originally Posted by sloride View Post
    Has Kawasaki,Yamaha and Honda figured out how to make them bulletproof?
    My point was: Harley has...they don't use them. Must be something about motorcycle shaft final drives that makes them more failure prone, than all our car applications.
    '14 R1200RT
    MOA #46783

  4. #19
    fracture
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by sloride View Post
    Has Kawasaki,Yamaha and Honda figured out how to make them bulletproof?
    I hear very little about driveline failures in other makes. I am sure there have been some issues but nobody I know has had a problem other than a leak.

    I heard that Guzzi had a recall a while back to fix something in the final drive. Not that many Guzzis out there so any failure data may be hard to come by.

    As far as going to belt drive or a complete redesign of their shaft drive system, BMW is just too stubborn to change anything.

  5. #20
    WILDPIG
    Guest
    wow, sounds like bmw riders are finally able to admit the obvivous-- bmw does have known failure issues,, now if corporate bmw would admit to not being infallable.............................. and start actually taking care of the customer.

  6. #21
    jduke
    Guest
    36,838 miles, 2009RT.
    No one should have to worry about a driveshaft this new or this few miles.

  7. #22
    fracture
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Motodan View Post
    My point was: Harley has...they don't use them. Must be something about motorcycle shaft final drives that makes them more failure prone, than all our car applications.
    It would be interesting to see the loads/stress analysis techniques used to design these systems.

    I do not think shaft drive on a motorcycle is more failure prone. If shaft drive was inherently problematic for a motorcycle, why haven't other bikes (like airheads) had such problems? Maybe it is just coincidence, but it looks like these problems surfaced after BMW introduced the paralever system.

  8. #23
    A bozo on the bus deilenberger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Spring Lake NJ, USA
    Posts
    7,707
    Quote Originally Posted by fracture View Post
    It would be interesting to see the loads/stress analysis techniques used to design these systems.

    I do not think shaft drive on a motorcycle is more failure prone. If shaft drive was inherently problematic for a motorcycle, why haven't other bikes (like airheads) had such problems? Maybe it is just coincidence, but it looks like these problems surfaced after BMW introduced the paralever system.
    Have you compared the HP rating of an airhead vs any hexhead? And the suspension travel of an airhead vs hexhead? Both HP and range of angle of the U joint will effect the lifetime. I'll say again - it seems to be a relatively rare failure, and not one that I'm worried about. And running a fully loaded bike 2 up is likely to increase all forces on the U joint, which might account for the seemly more failures on bikes used that way.

    FWIW - There are two universal joints on a Paralever rear drive vs one on the airhead. At least on the hexhead paralever BMW managed to keep the axis of the U joints in line with the paralever pivot points which seems to have eliminated the spline problems the oilheads experienced. People seem to have selective memory sometimes - I can certainly recall driveline failures on airheads (like the failed wheel to hub splines, and the hub rivets to crown-gear on the rear-drive..) and occassional U joint failures despite them being in an oil bath.
    Don Eilenberger http://www.eilenberger.net
    Spring Lk Heights NJ NJ Shore BMW Riders New Sweden BMW Riders
    '07 R1200R (current ride) and some bimmers.. and a Porsche

  9. #24
    fracture
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by deilenberger View Post
    Have you compared the HP rating of an airhead vs any hexhead? And the suspension travel of an airhead vs hexhead? Both HP and range of angle of the U joint will effect the lifetime. I'll say again - it seems to be a relatively rare failure, and not one that I'm worried about. And running a fully loaded bike 2 up is likely to increase all forces on the U joint, which might account for the seemly more failures on bikes used that way.

    FWIW - There are two universal joints on a Paralever rear drive vs one on the airhead. At least on the hexhead paralever BMW managed to keep the axis of the U joints in line with the paralever pivot points which seems to have eliminated the spline problems the oilheads experienced. People seem to have selective memory sometimes - I can certainly recall driveline failures on airheads (like the failed wheel to hub splines, and the hub rivets to crown-gear on the rear-drive..) and occassional U joint failures despite them being in an oil bath.
    Then how do you explain why we do not hear more about drive line failures on higher powered Japanese bikes, like ST1300, Concours, etc? Not trying to start an argument here, just trying to determine why BMW has more problems than other similar sized motorcycles.

  10. #25
    A bozo on the bus deilenberger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Spring Lake NJ, USA
    Posts
    7,707
    Quote Originally Posted by fracture View Post
    Then how do you explain why we do not hear more about drive line failures on higher powered Japanese bikes, like ST1300, Concours, etc? Not trying to start an argument here, just trying to determine why BMW has more problems than other similar sized motorcycles.
    Lets not include all "driveline" failures with the specific failure being discussed - a U joint failure.

    The most probable reason is twofold - BMW riders tend to put a lot of miles on their bikes. That will increase wear and increase the chances of failures. I also would never have heard about an ST1300 or Concours U-joint failure since I don't frequent forums that cover those bikes..

    I'm also guessing that neither have a rear suspension like the Paralever suspension - which to me is a big improvement over the much simpler "monolever" or non-pivoted rear suspension.

    A rather quick Google of "Kawasaki Concour U Joint" turned up a number of reports of failures (http://www.msgroup.org/forums/mtt/to...TOPIC_ID=11895) - some on Concours, some on other Japanese bikes. (http://www.totalmotorcycle.com/BBS/v...ic.php?t=34372) - it's not an unknown failure apparently on almost any shaft drive bike.

    Found the same thing - Google "st1300 u-joint" - there are reports of failures.. (http://tomdeboeser.wordpress.com/my-st1300-u-joint-rr/) One ST1300 forum is running a poll gathering info on failures: http://www.st-owners.com/forums/show...ST1300-U-Joint

    Given that info - I rather doubt that BMW has "more problems" with U joints then other similarly sized/powered motorcycles. We just hear about them more because we DO frequent BMW forums..
    Don Eilenberger http://www.eilenberger.net
    Spring Lk Heights NJ NJ Shore BMW Riders New Sweden BMW Riders
    '07 R1200R (current ride) and some bimmers.. and a Porsche

  11. #26
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    1,183

    Another reason

    why I think the BMW rider focuses more on the bike's shortcomings, is the premium price they pay to buy and operate said BMW machine. If I buy a 23k bike vs. another brand 14k bike, I have different expectations. I apparently think I'm buying "more" , as in engineering, reliability and other values, with the additional money. Perhaps the quality is equal and the additional is a combination of BMW, BMWNA greed and on my part, snob appeal? Does make one wonder.
    '14 R1200RT
    MOA #46783

  12. #27
    Ponch ponch1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Fountain Hills AZ
    Posts
    868
    I can only speak for the Kawasaki Vulcan, but they do fail occasionally. The thing is they only have one U-Joint, in the front. More often they get pinion seal leaks. As far as putting a belt drive on the R series, the crankshaft is longitudinal. Not so with the other bikes. A 90˚ turn to make that feasible would eat up power and belts are not good on gravel roads. The better fix are sealed CV joints.
    My Motorrad
    BMWMOA 162849 | BMWRA 41335 | VROC 8109-R | VBA 19

  13. #28
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    1,183
    Quote Originally Posted by Ponch1 View Post
    I can only speak for the Kawasaki Vulcan, but they do fail occasionally. The thing is they only have one U-Joint, in the front. More often they get pinion seal leaks. As far as putting a belt drive on the R series, the crankshaft is longitudinal. Not so with the other bikes. A 90˚ turn to make that feasible would eat up power and belts are not good on gravel roads. The better fix are sealed CV joints.
    Isn't that what jack-shafts are for? Perhaps just for the non gravel road crowd? BMW once swore that shafts were the only way to go. But now belts and chains are okay, because some of their models come with them . Just like synthetic oil was a no-no, until BMW had an oil firm come up with a nice looking BMW syn oil label and then it was okay.

    I think BMW's primary mission is to manufacture and sell motorcycles...I thing BMWNA's primary mission is to make money by moving motorcycles...there is a difference. The latter has more smoke and mirrors via its marketing and pricing....and not so much its customer support, as evidenced by the lack of communication on its products care and reliability.
    Last edited by Motodan; 08-01-2011 at 01:31 AM.
    '14 R1200RT
    MOA #46783

  14. #29
    Rally Rat
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    180
    If your transmission seal had leaked a little, your u joint would have been lubed and this would have never happened.

    David

  15. #30
    Ponch ponch1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Fountain Hills AZ
    Posts
    868
    Quote Originally Posted by Motodan View Post
    Isn't that what jack-shafts are for? Perhaps just for the non gravel road crowd? BMW once swore that shafts were the only way to go. But now belts and chains are okay, because some of their models come with them . Just like synthetic oil was a no-no, until BMW had an oil firm come up with a nice looking BMW syn oil label and then it was okay.

    I think BMW's primary mission is to manufacture and sell motorcycles...I thing BMWNA's primary mission is to make money by moving motorcycles...there is a difference. The latter has more smoke and mirrors via its marketing and pricing....and not so much its customer support, as evidenced by the lack of communication on its products care and reliability.

    Jack shaft? Reread what I wrote.
    My Motorrad
    BMWMOA 162849 | BMWRA 41335 | VROC 8109-R | VBA 19

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •