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Discussion Starter #1
I was at the dealer watching them rebuild my 04 after the dear strike, when I noticed an engine coming out of an 1800.

It was for a noisy alternator drive. Sure enough, the split retaining rings and collar were down in the sump. They are usually part of the alternator drive. The collar's job is to keep the two pieces of the retaining ring together and in the grooves.

When the collar fails, it splits on one side and opens up to look like the number 3. Then the two halves of the split retaiuning rign are located in the sump of the engine, forward of the baffle, where they fell after faiing.

I wonder how many of these there have been and at what mileage point they failed.

The failure is at the anti-rotating tab on the collar. The section with the tab was not found. However, the stress riser associated with the tab is the problem. It fatigues there and then the two half rings work out. Then the pressure that holds one half of the torsion pack against the other is no longer there, and the two halves that are supposed to damp the acceleration of one against the other via friction now have no connection in which to develop the friction damping. The six springs are stil in place.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
This was the second one I have seen and the third I know about. This one was a police bike. Tom's in New York I believe is an 01. The bike I saw two months ago in New Braunfels, I am not sure on the model, but it had 35,000 miles on it.

The collar is too weak and it breaks, which in turn releases the two halves of the keeper. Requires pulling the engine out of the frame and that means taking all the plastic and fuel tank off ahead of the seat.

Very major service.
 

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I have an 03 with 14k miles in my shop right now for the same problem... :cry: waiting for parts to arrive.

There is/was another at the Honda dealer in Fairfield, Ca last week with the same problem. It might be repaired by now. No info on year or mileage.
 

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My dealer has done four or five of these alternator drive fixes. The locking collar comes off and the drive clutch tries to separate. But it doesn't have room, and rubs the engine case. Honda knows all about this problem, they even changed it for the 06 model. Most of the ones I have seen were in the 30 to 40K range, mostly 02-03's. My 01 at 190K did not have this problem.

Ed Jenkins, Pawnee, Il
07, 6,300 miles
 

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My '03 had this problem at ~41k miles. Repaired under warranty. Took 7 weeks. Actual time for repair was 3 days. The rest of the time was for Honda to acknowledge/diagnose the problem. :roll:

Runs fine now.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I would like to know the differences in the 06 and later drives. One has a 27 tooth drive and the other a 28 tooth drive so they are not interchangeable. That means that the interface gear is also different, or the cases have different center to center distances. Since the damper pack is not servicible, we do not get to see what is inside of them. I have seen one with the first cover off and the six springs with end washers. However, there is a second concentric part and I do not know what is under cover there.
 

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Tom Finch said:
I was at the dealer watching them rebuild my 04 after the dear strike, when I noticed an engine coming out of an 1800.

It was for a noisy alternator drive. Sure enough, the split retaining rings and collar were down in the sump. They are usually part of the alternator drive. The collar's job is to keep the two pieces of the retaining ring together and in the grooves.

When the collar fails, it splits on one side and opens up to look like the number 3. Then the two halves of the split retaiuning rign are located in the sump of the engine, forward of the baffle, where they fell after faiing.

I wonder how many of these there have been and at what mileage point they failed.

The failure is at the anti-rotating tab on the collar. The section with the tab was not found. However, the stress riser associated with the tab is the problem. It fatigues there and then the two half rings work out. Then the pressure that holds one half of the torsion pack against the other is no longer there, and the two halves that are supposed to damp the acceleration of one against the other via friction now have no connection in which to develop the friction damping. The six springs are stil in place.
what are the symptoms/noise before/when it goes???
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Rattle at lower rpms, particularly around 2200 at low power with the oil hot.
 

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The more lights and do dads you add to the bike requires more power to turn the alternator... Sorta means !! "More wear and tear"

Original lights on my bike, original alternator, 208,000 original miles, and no original work on engine or altenator (YET)

JMHO 8)
 

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Tom, When the 06's were released, one of the new items mentioned was the "fluid dampened alt drive". My new 06 manual w/07 updates is in the house under wraps till Xmas. Anyone that has the problem, should make sure the dealer goes after the loose pieces that end up in the bottom of the rear engine cover. There is a drain back hole located there, and I have seen these loose pieces trying to enter that hole.

Ed Jenkins, Pawnee, Il
07, 6,300 miles
 

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Interesting, In all my years of Goldwings, I always buy the first year of a model change and have never had any problems, 75, 80, 85, 88, 2001, the 85 actually was changed in 84, but I waited for the 85 with fuel injection and really miss that bike.

NO ENGINE PROBLEMS ON ANY OF EM !!

JMHO 8)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I remember the term fluid damped and would like to know what it means.

The current system uses three heavy and three light coil compression springs. If I had thought, I would have taken photos of one that was apart. Basically, it looks like two round corn stick molds, with the corn sticks as though they were strung on a necklace rather than lookiinng like spokes in a wheel. The two six place "molds" then face each other with half the "corn stick" (spring) recessed into each of the two molds that are facing each other.

Picture the alternator drive damper laying out of the engine, face up, so that one of the molds faces up with six coil springs laying on their side half submerged in one of the two molds. There are three springs of heavy wire and three of lighter wire, each alternating wth the other.

The face up mold has at its center a rigidly attached hollow spindle facing up with internal splines. The other mold drops face down over the up facing shaft and now the six springs are trapped in between these two molds with each of the six springs laying half in the bottom mold and and the top mold cavities covering the other half of the springs that are laying on their sides.

With this in mind, if you attempt to rotate the top mold around the spindle, it will grab half of each spring and try to compress it against the other end of the bottom half of the mold cavity. No matter which way you attempt to rotate the top half of the mold, it will compress the spring in each cavity.

So the bottom half of the mold with its hollow spindle is what drives the alternator rotor which has the matching spline that fits into the hollow spindle. The top half of the mold has a gear bolted to the back of it that runs agains a gear on the crankshaft that is about twice as big and therefore turns the alternator in the opposite direction at about twice engine speed.

So as each piston comes up agains compression and slows the crankshaft down, the alternator tries to compress the springs in one direction because it does not want to slow down because of inertia. When each piston receives pressure from compustion and accelerates the crankshaft, it rotates the mold in the advancing direction and compresses the other end of the springs because the alternator does not want to accelerate, again because of the inertia of the rotor.

Those familiar with resonance can see that there will be a speed where the spring rate of the spring pack will allow the rotor to resonate with the three per rev power impulse of the pistons force on the crank shaft.

Now we are getting to the root of the problem. The two halves of the damper have their faces compressed against each other at the rim by belville springs, that slide down over the spindle, so that there is intentional friction to stop a resonant condition between the alternator rotor and the crankshaft from occuring, like wrappig a bell in a towel.

Belville springs are think spring steel washers that are cone shaped and when you flatten them, the want to return to their cone shape, and are therefore a spring, much like the clutch spring. The belville washer force is applied by a thick washer being forced down against the belville center and the rim of the belville is pressed against the top half of the mold. The thick washer is held down by two C shaped clips in a groove in the hollow spindle. These two half circle C clips are kept in the groove by a flanged washer that has the downturned flange slide over the two C clips with no room for them to come out of the groove. There is a tab on the flanged retainer to keep it from rotating. The hard notch where the tab becomes a widend part of the flange for a short 4 milimeters or so, is where the flange breaks. That is called a stress riser. The flange with a short widened section breaks in fatigue at the change in width, just like the rear frame loop of the bike does at the passenger footrest fitting where the thickness changes, again causing a stress riser.

No doubt there were fixes along the way. Most likely the tab width change was softened by a fillet where the hard corner is on the ones that break. They probably also changed to a thicker material to reduce stress levels.

The new damper has one tooth difference in the drive, and I would guess it is to drive it faster but I do not remeber which one has 37 teeth and whihc one has 28 teeth, to confirm that fact.

The clutch is also driven from the crankshaft in the opposite direction. That is how they keep the big engine from torquing the whole bike over when you rev the engine. The smaller air head Beemers do not have this refinement and so we feel the bike try to lay over when we gun the engine on those.

The Wing is one giant piece of sophisticaiton. If you want to get a hint, just look in the back of the main part of the maintenance manual at the section 23 called technical features.

It has a hydraulic piston in the clutch just like those in automatic transmissions. Otherwise the clutch spring would cause us to really pull hard on the clutch lever

Look at the ABS method of modulating brake force. Pure elegance. if you understand it, you will see why there is no notching when it functions.

The super sophistication of the Wing makes it all the more impressive that you can ride them a half million miles or so with no issues.

Then you see the Beemers with their giant pumps and modulating valve choppig brake pressure in the ABS, coarse fuel controil maps, etc and Harleys with no ABS, no integrated brakes, mechanical clutches, no anti dive valving, but acres of very pretty britework and perfect paint.
 

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03 18500 MILES WHEN I HAD MINE REPLACED !
 

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Did it make a whining noise

Before the alternator drive failure did the alternator drive gear make a whining noise? My 03 has made a loud whining noise from day one. Honda wouldn't do anything about it. Honda would rather wait till it something breaks.
 

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My 2004 failed at 42K. The whining was there from day one and is still there with 64K on it. I don't even hear it any more.
 

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My 2004 bearing failed with 5600 miles on the odometer. Semi synthetic Motul was used at the time of the failure... In my bike, the noise was a very loud whining that rose and dropped with engine RPMs... The engine needs to be dropped and the rear cover (where the clutch rides) also had to be removed. The engine itself is NOT disassembled.
 

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Tom, couild you tell if the replacement parts are any bigger, tougher, or are they just putting weak stock ones back in. :?
 

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I have an '06 and it had the noise within the first 500 mile :!:

I believe mine is not alone. The problem may be that whatever Honda has done to fix the old problem is not working either. :cry:
 

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g-man...

the noise associated with the alternator drive is a loud KNOCKING noise only at idle. As soon as the engine rpm rise above idle the noise goes away.
This failure is not associated with a 'whine' type of noise.

I got the 03 with 14k miles back together last month, the part had been on backorder for about a month and the new alternator clutch drive has a modified ring that is now one piece. Obviously Honda recongised the problem and has corrected it.
I don't know if this is an 06-07 update but would guess it is.
The engine sounds sweet and smooth and the customer is happy.
 
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