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Discussion Starter #1
i was chasing some new clatter noise in my top end at 2800-3000 rpm and pulled rockers off to inspect everything. the lower rocker box plate on the front jug had some spider type cracks in it. i can't tell though if it's normal casting marks or something? the other side of the plate is perfect. there were no oil leaks anywhere. has anyone seen these before? is it normal?

bike is a 2012 RG custom with dragos 580, flowed heads, SE tapered adjustable pushrods, and new S&S lifters. i did a leakdown on both cylinders before pulling rocker covers and all was good there. i'm having trouble thinking these cracks are problems and would cause noise, but i really am not sure.





 

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Normal. They all look like that.
Well, i must have gotten lucky, mine don't look anything like that.:grin: My first thought was something came loose and banged around in there, or maybe the torque sequence was way off putting stress cracks in it, but i'm just a shade tree mechanic, what do i know :laugh:. Good luck with it.
 

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They are casting marks. Not stress cracks. Stress cracks would follow through to the other side.
 

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Looks like casting imperfections to me also. On cast parts the cast is made mainly from sand & the parts always have imperfections, which are removed on the critical areas, gasket & part mating surfaces.
 

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Seen those markings in most unfinished castings. Look inside your outer primary cover or cam cover.
 

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As others have said, casting marks.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
cool thanks everyone. i've been chasing down this clatter sound and am going through everything i can think of.

here are the symptoms:
- clatter type sound at 2800-3000 rpm, sounds like a chain tapping on something
- only happens with power at clutch, i cannot replicate sound in neutral revving through rpm
- sound goes away when i am on the road and i pull in clutch but leave rpm's hanging in that zone
- no codes from engine

this is what i've done:
- put a stethoscope to entire bike while idling and revving, nothing standing out
- pulled front rocker cover and inspected everything, all good
- new s&s lifters
- adjusted SE quick pushrods at 2.5, 2.75, and 3.25 turns, no effect
- pulled primary and verified tensioner is good
- compensator is in good health and bolt and nut were still torqued properly
- readjusted clutch and added new primary fluids
- checked heat shields
- checked front motor mount
- checked floorboards

the remaining items i need to do:
- pull rear rocker cover to inspect
- try to tighten rear drive belt a bit

the drive belt is adjusted to about 7/16" which is a little loose for an FLTRX. it doesn't sound like a belt slapping.

i'm thinking it's clutch/drive related since i can't replicate the sound unless the drivetrain is under power. it is hard to pinpoint the location of the sound and sounds like primary chain slap or noise from rockers/lifters. however, i can't replicate those sounds when in neutral so am thinking it is not those things. from my thinking gotta be drive related.

any ideas? anything else to check?
 

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cool thanks everyone. i've been chasing down this clatter sound and am going through everything i can think of.

here are the symptoms:
- clatter type sound at 2800-3000 rpm, sounds like a chain tapping on something
- only happens with power at clutch, i cannot replicate sound in neutral revving through rpm
- sound goes away when i am on the road and i pull in clutch but leave rpm's hanging in that zone
- no codes from engine

this is what i've done:
- put a stethoscope to entire bike while idling and revving, nothing standing out
- pulled front rocker cover and inspected everything, all good
- new s&s lifters
- adjusted SE quick pushrods at 2.5, 2.75, and 3.25 turns, no effect
- pulled primary and verified tensioner is good
- compensator is in good health and bolt and nut were still torqued properly
- readjusted clutch and added new primary fluids
- checked heat shields
- checked front motor mount
- checked floorboards

the remaining items i need to do:
- pull rear rocker cover to inspect
- try to tighten rear drive belt a bit

the drive belt is adjusted to about 7/16" which is a little loose for an FLTRX. it doesn't sound like a belt slapping.

i'm thinking it's clutch/drive related since i can't replicate the sound unless the drivetrain is under power. it is hard to pinpoint the location of the sound and sounds like primary chain slap or noise from rockers/lifters. however, i can't replicate those sounds when in neutral so am thinking it is not those things. from my thinking gotta be drive related.

any ideas? anything else to check?
Sounds like it's Clutch / Mainshaft related,,, a bearing??

A loose Belt (skipping) will make a surprisingly metallic sound,,, usually intermittent...
 

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cool thanks everyone. i've been chasing down this clatter sound and am going through everything i can think of.

here are the symptoms:
- clatter type sound at 2800-3000 rpm, sounds like a chain tapping on something
- only happens with power at clutch, i cannot replicate sound in neutral revving through rpm
- sound goes away when i am on the road and i pull in clutch but leave rpm's hanging in that zone
- no codes from engine

this is what i've done:
- put a stethoscope to entire bike while idling and revving, nothing standing out
- pulled front rocker cover and inspected everything, all good
- new s&s lifters
- adjusted SE quick pushrods at 2.5, 2.75, and 3.25 turns, no effect
- pulled primary and verified tensioner is good
- compensator is in good health and bolt and nut were still torqued properly
- readjusted clutch and added new primary fluids
- checked heat shields
- checked front motor mount
- checked floorboards

the remaining items i need to do:
- pull rear rocker cover to inspect
- try to tighten rear drive belt a bit

the drive belt is adjusted to about 7/16" which is a little loose for an FLTRX. it doesn't sound like a belt slapping.

i'm thinking it's clutch/drive related since i can't replicate the sound unless the drivetrain is under power. it is hard to pinpoint the location of the sound and sounds like primary chain slap or noise from rockers/lifters. however, i can't replicate those sounds when in neutral so am thinking it is not those things. from my thinking gotta be drive related.

any ideas? anything else to check?
I know you said you checked the heat shields but I just wanted to say that I think I’ve heard that same rattle more than once before I heard it starting around 2700rpm and only lasting a couple hundred rpm while accelerating but never any other time. I found once a heat shield was out of place and tapping a cylinder and once one of the little hose clamp tabs had broke and it felt tight but that engine vibrates just right at that rpm and after I took the heat shield off it went away. Just saying that it wouldn’t hurt to take them off and give it a shot.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
took heat shields off, no difference.

i gotta reset belt tension then i'm going to look at engine mounts. the only other thing i didn't do was take the compensator or clutch apart. i'm thinking if it's not something rattling then it's something in the clutch. i've isolated it to that specific rpm and only while under power, so it's either something loose or clutch/tranny.

the investigation continues...
 

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I hear a lot more valve train noise in the 2800-3000 range. Hard to tell what you mean by clatter sound.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
it sounds like a chain slapping on metal, that's the best way i can describe it. normal clatter, tapping, and other noises don't bother me, this one is new and started about 500 miles ago. it is very noticeable.

both rockers arms, and all rocker bolts are good. lifters are good. pushrods are adjusted. i re-adjusted drive belt and no change. primary was inspected. primary nut is tight. primary chain looks good. no chain marks on covers. reset primary chain tensioner. removed heat shields. checked all bolts and fasteners. running out of ideas.

however, i'm starting to narrow in on when it makes the sound. if the bike is in neutral (on ground or in the air) i can rev through the entire RPM range and all sounds good. when the bike is up on the stand and i run through the gears and rev through the RPM range all sounds good. so it is only when the bike is under load that the sound is present.

i'm familiar with engine ping (rocks hitting the tins sound) and this doesn't sound like any engine ping i've heard. my bike was TTS tuned 2-3 years ago and has been running great. i can't imagine somehow my bike lost tune. and if this is engine ping it sounds different than what i've ever heard.

so at this point since it seems to be related to load it's got to be either clutch/transmission related or maybe tune related. if it's clutch/transmission it is weird that it is only present in the 2800-3000 RPM range.

has anyone ever had a bike randomly go out of tune? something else i'm missing, piston or crank related?
 

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it sounds like a chain slapping on metal, that's the best way i can describe it. normal clatter, tapping, and other noises don't bother me, this one is new and started about 500 miles ago. it is very noticeable.

both rockers arms, and all rocker bolts are good. lifters are good. pushrods are adjusted. i re-adjusted drive belt and no change. primary was inspected. primary nut is tight. primary chain looks good. no chain marks on covers. reset primary chain tensioner. removed heat shields. checked all bolts and fasteners. running out of ideas.

however, i'm starting to narrow in on when it makes the sound. if the bike is in neutral (on ground or in the air) i can rev through the entire RPM range and all sounds good. when the bike is up on the stand and i run through the gears and rev through the RPM range all sounds good. so it is only when the bike is under load that the sound is present.

i'm familiar with engine ping (rocks hitting the tins sound) and this doesn't sound like any engine ping i've heard. my bike was TTS tuned 2-3 years ago and has been running great. i can't imagine somehow my bike lost tune. and if this is engine ping it sounds different than what i've ever heard.

so at this point since it seems to be related to load it's got to be either clutch/transmission related or maybe tune related. if it's clutch/transmission it is weird that it is only present in the 2800-3000 RPM range.

has anyone ever had a bike randomly go out of tune? something else i'm missing, piston or crank related?
Bikes don't randomly go out of tune (not flash Tuners anyway) although carbon buildup on the pistons / heads can get severe enough for detonation to occur...
 

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Discussion Starter #16
i've heard to get rid of carbon build up to squirt a few shots of water in the intake while holding the bike at 2000 RPM.

does this work? safe?
 

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i've heard to get rid of carbon build up to squirt a few shots of water in the intake while holding the bike at 2000 RPM.

does this work? safe?
Thats old school. If you ride in the rain ,you're good. I prefer additives.
 

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Back before catastrophic converters, we used to feed em ground up walnut shells to clear the carbon off of the back of the valves and combustion chambers. Ford even had em by the bag with a PN.
 

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Have you pulled the cam plate and checked the cam chain tensioner? I had that 2500-3000 rpm noise and found my tensioner was about to let go. Worth a look.


04 RG
 

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Discussion Starter #20
so i pulled rear rocker cover off just to check that one out again and saw that the exhaust rocker arm was sitting a lot higher than the intake. i verified bike is at TDC by putting a piece of paper towel in the plug hole, rotating wheel until it blew out, then put a chop stick in the plug hole to feel when the piston was at TDC. i also moved the wheel back and forth with my girlfriend watching to see if the rocker arms or pushrods moved; they didn't. bike is at TDC.

is that normal for the one pushrod to look high on TDC? i would think they would be even. i pulled rocker arms and plate off and set on a piece of glass to verify they were flat. on the plate the arms are the same height. rocker to shaft endplay is .0016" so within spec.

look normal for TDC?



 
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