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Discussion Starter #1
Real quick, has anyone kept track of the years (on an LT) which are more prone to have a final drive failure?

From what I can tell from reading the threads on the forum, it sounds like the # of ball bearings in the final drive seems to have a bearing (no pun intended) on a final drive failing. But how can one tell if they have a 17 or 19 ball bearing set-up?

I personally own an 05 LT and curious to know the answer.

Look forward to everyone's comments or thoughts.

Thanks!

Glenn
 

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southern_nj said:
Real quick, has anyone kept track of the years (on an LT) which are more prone to have a final drive failure?

From what I can tell from reading the threads on the forum, it sounds like the # of ball bearings in the final drive seems to have a bearing (no pun intended) on a final drive failing. But how can one tell if they have a 17 or 19 ball bearing set-up?

I personally own an 05 LT and curious to know the answer.

Look forward to everyone's comments or thoughts.

Thanks!

Glenn
Ole Toad has had three FD failures. Two on the 19 ball bearing and one on the 17. We're thru with failures now, cuz the FD guru of VT blessed our last one!!

BTW - there is (somewhere here) a 'partial' listing of final drive failures, as reported by forum members, using a rough detail of each failure. I'm not sure there is anecdotal info on the bearing ball numbers - just maybe mileage, age of bike, trailer hauling, one-up or two-up, etc. I'll do a search later today and see if I can pull that list out. Also, you might ping Curtis (CharlieVT) and ask if he has been keeping any sort of records that would indicate a trend, or non-trend. I believe he's repaired upwards of 25/30 failed drives and may have a model-year spreadsheet on his findings.
 

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First LT I had the finale drive failed right after I bought it was a used bike had 37k miles on it .So I installed a new bearing in it without doing anything to shims started to failing with about 2k miles on it .After watching the video and finding out I was way over shimmed .Installed new bearing and the right shims and put about 7,500 miles before totaling the bike .The Lt I have now is a 2001 with 180,000 mile on it so far one problems .So my only question is if the drive is set up correctly and is properly maintained will you have a life time of use?
 

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Is there any consideration to removing the final drive and taking it to the dealer for maintenance (to save $) or do they have to do everything with the bike present (ergo increasing costs)?
 

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If you're gonna take it off the bike just send it to Curtis and the rebuild will be done correctly. He has an ad in the classifieds for his rebuilding service.

Oh yea, any year can fail if it's not shimmed right so it's a crap shoot for the most part. Just depends on which monkey peeled the banana at the factory.
 

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Dick said:
Ole Toad has had three FD failures. Two on the 19 ball bearing and one on the 17. We're thru with failures now, cuz the FD guru of VT blessed our last one!!

BTW - there is (somewhere here) a 'partial' listing of final drive failures, as reported by forum members, using a rough detail of each failure. I'm not sure there is anecdotal info on the bearing ball numbers - just maybe mileage, age of bike, trailer hauling, one-up or two-up, etc. I'll do a search later today and see if I can pull that list out. Also, you might ping Curtis (CharlieVT) and ask if he has been keeping any sort of records that would indicate a trend, or non-trend. I believe he's repaired upwards of 25/30 failed drives and may have a model-year spreadsheet on his findings.
Sooner or later one of my FD rebuilds is going to fail, its just a matter of time.
I don't have any statistics. Post #4 in this thread is probably the best summation of my opinions:
http://www.bmwlt.com/forums/showthread.php?t=59416&highlight=ball

Here's the FD survey on this site:
http://www.bmwlt.com/forums/survey.php?&do=results&sid=28
 

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BlauBeeMr said:
Is there any consideration to removing the final drive and taking it to the dealer for maintenance (to save $) or do they have to do everything with the bike present (ergo increasing costs)?
Or you could come to a South Central Tech Session and get it done.

dan
 

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"Or you could come to a South Central Tech Session and get it done.
dan"

Dan, I'd personally love to come down for your tech session, but I don't think my final drive would make it that far. :histerica
 

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fpmlt said:
Dan, I'd personally love to come down for your tech session, but I don't think my final drive would make it that far. :histerica
Plus it will be April before ya'll are able to ride again.
 

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Dan....thanks.....I will keep you in mind. No rush though.....enjoyed the 75 degree ride today...no indications of it going bad that I can tell. Take care!
Kenny
 

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After reading the survey linked by CarlieVT I think the most interestint result was:
Question # 13. Type of oil used in final drive
Dino - 76 36.71%
Synthetic - 131 63.29%

Does anyone else think that is telling in any way?
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Tony: Interesting observation. The question is this: When did they convert from dino to synthetic?

Other comments are:

1. 80% were model years 99 - 01.

2. 49% had mileage between 10k to 36K miles when the FD failed.

3. 68% rode mostly one up.

4. 86% didn't pull a trailer.
 

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So statistically, anyone who rides alone, with no trailer, on a 99-01, with over 36,000 miles and synthetic oil is basically screwed?
Well, I think it's bullchit. Not one mention of color, seat type or windshield brand makes this as unscientific a survey as is humanly possible.
 

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fpmlt said:
So statistically, anyone who rides alone, with no trailer, on a 99-01, with over 36,000 miles and synthetic oil is basically screwed?...
Exactly. Odds are further increased if you are male, gray-haired and - god forbid - you are riding a K1200LT !

Only technically valid explanations work for me. Preload theory is the only one that makes sense.
That is why I had CharlieVT rebuild my spare FD using the methodology that I understand.
 

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"Does anyone else think that is telling in any way?"

I seem to remember that "Correlation is not causation."

Best from Tucson
Bob
 

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After having a disturbing sudden increase in metal flakes at 16,000 miles, I had CharlieVT do a rebuild on my 2005 K1200LT this winter. When cut over, the old bearing turned out to still be serviceable, but it was likely over shimmed by about .012 inch. No bearing can take that for long, no matter what magic oil is used.
 

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"No bearing can take that for long, no matter what magic oil is used."

Oh I beg to differ! I have it on good authority that Amsolube is developing a new product, "Bearing in a Bottle" that will solve all our problems.

Don't believe me? Well call their 900 number and ask for Slick Willy. He knows. :p
 

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fpmlt said:
"No bearing can take that for long, no matter what magic oil is used."

Oh I beg to differ! I have it on good authority that Amsolube is developing a new product, "Bearing in a Bottle" that will solve all our problems.

Don't believe me? Well call their 900 number and ask for Slick Willy. He knows. :p

Popeye likes Olive Oil. ;)
 

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I find it interesting that 207 people responded to the survey about final drive failures. 207!!!
While a significant number it is still a relatively small percentage of owners who follow this forum and have not experienced final drive failures. I am one of those. I purchased my LT new in 1999 and still have it. 53k miles.
 
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