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Old 05-06-2013, 06:02 PM   #2656
810H4Z4RD
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Joined: Apr 2013
Location: NE Wyoming
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High-pitched whistle?

I just picked up an '03 sherpa with a little over 4k miles. It seems to run fine and has been meticulously cared for, but while riding for the first time around town today the front end started to whistle very loudly. It's got an after-market windshield on it, and I thought maybe that was the cause since the whistling started when I was going about 45 mph, but I slowed to nearly a dead stop before the noise subsided.

I'm going to pull the windshield off tonight and see if that cures it, but I have myself convinced that it's not the issue. Is there any conceivable mechanical issue that would cause such a loud high-pitched whistle from the front of a bike?

TIA

I don't have any good pics of it yet but here it is trailered on the way home:

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Old 05-07-2013, 02:05 AM   #2657
Rx4Pain
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High pitched Whine

It is likely the speedo mechanism at the front wheel. Right hand side, give it a squirt of some lube and it will cease to squeel!

Ken
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Old 05-07-2013, 07:47 AM   #2658
ssmschulz
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Location: Reno, NV
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sdd04 View Post
The other thing, is I also have the high fender on mine, and the other day while braking very hard from a fairly high speed, the fender dragged onto the top of tire enough to melt it a bit. I think maybe I need stiffer springs.
I'm just impressed your front brake works that well lol![/QUOTE]



LOL - Classic.
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Old 05-07-2013, 07:54 AM   #2659
Old Prairie Dawg
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Wicked High Pitched squeel in frint

A little WD or simular in the speedo mechanism will keep it quite for a couple of trips. While I'm at - where are all these '03 Sherpas that look like '09 Sherpas coming from?
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Old 05-07-2013, 09:11 AM   #2660
duanew1
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The best thing to do is to take the wheel off and grease it up really good along with the speedo cable. You need to be really careful on reassembly to keep from breaking the plastic hub connector. Make sure everything is lined up and don't force it.
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Old 05-07-2013, 03:21 PM   #2661
810H4Z4RD
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Speedometer sounds likely, the whistle sounds like it's coming from the front right. Will give it some lube tonight.

Am too chickenshot to pull the wheel for fear of breaking something. I'm hoping my mechanical skills will improve over time but right now I'm not comfortable with anything but the noobiest basics.

Thanks for the quick replys ... I've heard outstanding things about this site and this thread in particular and the praise seems well deserved.

As for where this '03 came from, I picked it up in Utah from a gentleman in his 60s who no longer rides.


Edit: Hmmm it's not a mechanical cable is it, looks like it needs to be disassembled at the bottom, so the wheel's gotta come off to get to it anyway huh? Gonna put it off til the weekend, and if I'm pulling the wheel will grease it up too. Thanks again for the help.

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Old 05-07-2013, 07:43 PM   #2662
810H4Z4RD
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My buddy eggman stopped by and helped me pull the front wheel, packed the speedo assembly with grease and back together and the noise is gone. No issues with the hub connector. In retrospect it was pretty simple and straight-forward, but it's sure nice having some knowledgeable guidance the first time through. Thanks guys for the help
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Old 05-07-2013, 10:32 PM   #2663
eepeqez
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Location: Melbourne, Australia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 810H4Z4RD View Post
...the front end started to whistle very loudly...
The Sherpa squeal of death!

For those who haven't experienced it, this is a constant high pitch squeal from somewhere down near the front wheel. The pitch doesn't change with speed, a bit like how the pitch of a violin string doesn't change when the bow is pushed faster. The volume tends to be pretty much constant when moving too. The noise comes and goes and can be maddening to try to trace.

My 2000 did it the other day for the first time in at least a year or two and it occurred to me we hadn't seen it mentioned here or in the yahoo Sherpa forum for ages.

The dealer I bought the bike from in 2009 (very low mileage) mentioned this issue before I even bought the bike. He was a rural dealer here in Australia who had only seen a handful of Sherpas but sold dozens of Stockman aggi bikes. His theory was that the Stockman (the farm bike version of the Sherpa) was prone to getting grit under the pads, but when mine started doing it (the day after I bought it!), careful inspection revealed nothing in the brakes and I've never heard any one else mention this theory.

In the Sherpa forum the prevailing view seems to be that the front bearing seals squeal and that greasing helps. I haven't heard the speedo drive theory before, but the general location is right and lubricating the bearing seals could easily lead to some stray grease on the speedo drive too. Certainly the cause has got to be somewhere around the bearings.

The upshot is that "they all do that sometimes", that it isn't a precursor to any know catastophe or even minor breakdown, and that if you choose to ignore it, it does tend to subside if the bike is used regularly. (another reason to suspect dried/hardened grease not doing its job?)
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Old 05-07-2013, 10:36 PM   #2664
eepeqez
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PS take great care refitting the speedo drive mechanism when putting the front wheel back in; it is notoriously easy to break.
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Old 05-09-2013, 01:06 PM   #2665
810H4Z4RD
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Thanks for the warning. Had no problems with the speedo mechanism, just popped it in place, spun it with my finger until the tabs lined up and it seated, then slid the wheel back into place. Had seen warnings about it in previous posts which made it a non-issue. This thread rules.

BTW, anyone know if DrJ's jet kits are still available? I'm only on page 50ish here and have yet to run across notice of his disappearance, but the Yahoo group seemed to indicate he might be gone from the scene. If not I'd sure like to get my mits on one of his kits.
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Old 05-09-2013, 01:39 PM   #2666
tomatoe333
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 810H4Z4RD View Post
BTW, anyone know if DrJ's jet kits are still available? I'm only on page 50ish here and have yet to run across notice of his disappearance, but the Yahoo group seemed to indicate he might be gone from the scene. If not I'd sure like to get my mits on one of his kits.
No idea where he's gotten to, but the parts of the jet kit are pretty easy to track down.

From memory, it's a #130 main jet, and a #20 pilot jet. One size up from stock on both jets. The carb is a 34mm Mikuni BST, so you can look up parts using that.

The other part of the DrJ treatment is to drill out/remove the emissions cover over the pilot screw, and set it at 2-3/4 turns out from fully seated.
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Old 05-09-2013, 02:05 PM   #2667
mike21b
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 810H4Z4RD View Post
Thanks for the warning. Had no problems with the speedo mechanism, just popped it in place, spun it with my finger until the tabs lined up and it seated, then slid the wheel back into place. Had seen warnings about it in previous posts which made it a non-issue. This thread rules.

BTW, anyone know if DrJ's jet kits are still available? I'm only on page 50ish here and have yet to run across notice of his disappearance, but the Yahoo group seemed to indicate he might be gone from the scene. If not I'd sure like to get my mits on one of his kits.
Here are the jet part numbers for upgrade:

#130 Main Jet - Kawasaki Part Number 92063-1103 (JET-MAIN,#A130)
#20 Pilot Jet - Kawasaki Part Number 92064-1043 (JET-PILOT #A20)

Mikuni part numbers are:
Main Jet N200/604 (with proper orifice suffix to match Kawasaki P/N)
Pilot Jet VM22/210 (with proper orifice suffix to match Kawasaki P/N)

Lots of online parts dealers will have them by the Mikuni part numbers, if not the specific Kawasaki numbers.

Most parts people can cross reference the part numbers, so you shouldn't be limited to a Kawasaki dealer. I'm pretty sure that Ron Ayers, as well as other online sources, has them.
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Old 05-09-2013, 02:21 PM   #2668
mike21b
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sdd04 View Post

I put about 45 miles on this bike last night testing out the lowering links for her and the one thing that still bugs me about this bike are the brakes. The feel on the front master cylinder is a bit soft and notchy, and not a lot of stopping. Trying to figure out if that is normal for this bike or not. With the brakes I have on my 690, I'm use to a bike that stops, so the Sherpa may be doing what it is supposed to do.

Thanks
Have you ever owned or rode a KLR-650? Compared to that bike, where the brakes are almost universally panned as "not so great", the Sherpa's brakes are pretty good. I changed the brake fluid on my Sherpa and it was much better, and I didn't have many complaints before that.

My first indication that I was doing a good thing was when the initial few shots of brake fluid came out black. (In the reservoir, it was still nice and clear looking)
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Old 05-09-2013, 09:00 PM   #2669
810H4Z4RD
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Thanks Mike and Tomatoe looks like i can pick them up semi-locally for cheap.

On a side note, deer must find the Sherpa as appealing as i do ... when i go out cruising in the evening they keep bounding out of the bushes to say hi.


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Old 05-10-2013, 03:52 AM   #2670
sdd04
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mike21b View Post
Have you ever owned or rode a KLR-650? Compared to that bike, where the brakes are almost universally panned as "not so great", the Sherpa's brakes are pretty good. I changed the brake fluid on my Sherpa and it was much better, and I didn't have many complaints before that.

My first indication that I was doing a good thing was when the initial few shots of brake fluid came out black. (In the reservoir, it was still nice and clear looking)
sold the KLR to get the 690 and it braked better than this Sherpa. I'll bleed the brakes and see if that helps. Thanks
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