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Growly Engine?


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I am noticing a growly feel / sound on my 04 RT as well a slight hesitation / surge lately.

It is present in all gears and more pronounced when the bike is under load as in going up hill.

Pulling in the clutch at any speed it is gone completely, ergo not wheels, tires etc.

It is substantially reduced and almost gone when the bike is in 6th and cruising at 70 mph.

Is noticible when reving the engine in neutral which kind of takes the tranny out of the equation. Any thoughts folks?

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skinny_tom (aka boney)

Growling is typically a bearing type noise. Don't discount the input shaft to the transmission, it still spins with the engine while the bike's in neutral.

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Say it ain't so!

Can anyone direct me in trying to eliminate items to narrow down the field of possibilities?


Could this be caused by bad plugs?, injectors?, ???

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I would tend to agree with Tom. Transmission input shaft bearing is on the way out. I would have it looked at post haste as when it goes, it takes out the entire clutch assembly as well.

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simple to diagnose really.. just pull in the clutch with a gear engaged. tranny input shaft stops. if sounds stops at that moment you know where to look.

if not.. what else would cause this sound in the engine?



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Joe Frickin' Friday
simple to diagnose really.. just pull in the clutch with a gear engaged. tranny input shaft stops. if sounds stops at that moment you know where to look.


Note: this test works only with bike in neutral at 0 MPH. Also, if the noise is NOT there with clutch engaged, the input shaft may still be the problem; OP states noise is more pronounced under high load, so it may not make any significant noise under zero load.

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Well, thanks all for the input and here is what I have found..


I have a K75 as well and just returned from a 6000 miler on the RT, well actually more like 10,000 as my buddy rode the bike home after I rode it out west, rode the K75 for a couple of weeks trying to decide whether I should sell it.


Thats when I got back on the RT and noticed a fair bit of vibration on the way to work.

Coming home I could hear what I mentioned was a growling sound from the engine, plus the vibration. Two more trips to and from work and I put on the post trying to figure it out.


Heres what I think:

I haven't serviced the RT except for an oil change since the trip.

I rode the K75 which is notorious. for being super smooth.

I started wearing different high NRR ear plugs supplied at work while riding.

Thus, I was comparing the two bikes on smoothness, I could hear the RT differently, major quiet ear plugs, the bike needs a tune up, but otherwise I think its the same machine it has always been.

I rode today without earplugs and it runs fine except for some surge at constant speed.

So now I'll check the threads and decide whether I should do the tune up myself or take it to the BMW pocket picker.

What you can't hear may not hurt you, in this case I believe that being able to hear a specific sound of the engine running and eliminating the cacophany resulted in some un-warranted concern.



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