Alternator chain noise Raider 09 - Star Motorcycle Forums: Star Raider, V-Max, V-Star, Road-Star Forum
  • 2 Post By lesblank
  • 1 Post By KCW
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 10-27-2018, 02:49 PM Thread Starter
Junior Member
Join Date: Oct 2018
Posts: 1
Alternator chain noise Raider 09


My name is Pim, from The Netherlands and I’m driving a 2009 Raider.

My question conserns the following: when I cruise at low speed / gear / rpm,s I hear a lot of mechanical noise at the left site of the engine. A local Dutch Yamaha dealer told me that thats the alternator chain and advized me to drive with more rpms.

He also told me that he cant fixed it, its how the Raider is constructed.

Does anyone regonize this problem? Is there a solution to solve this? What happens if iT cant be solved and I wont cruise with more rpms?

Looking forward to read your sugestions !


Last edited by Ruigrokjes Heesch; 10-27-2018 at 02:52 PM.
Ruigrokjes Heesch is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 10-27-2018, 03:59 PM
Lifetime Premium
wimg's Avatar
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Maastricht, Netherlands, Europe
Posts: 281
Hi Pim,

Welcome to the forums! I'm from the Netherlands too, living in the South, on a fairly heavily modified Roadliner (XV1900A Midnight Star).

Anyway, I think that is a little strange. Yes, the big twin Yamahas are a little noisy, but nothing too bad. I don't know which dealer you were talking to, obviously, but I could recommend a few in the centre, east and south of the Netherlands, if you are interested. Just send me a PM.

Oh, we all love to admire each others' motorcycles, so please do share one or more pics of your ride, please.

Thank you in advance!

Kind regards, Wim

Own: 2006 Yamaha XV1900A Midnight Star, Black Cherry, with all the Strat S trims ( (2015-)
Owned: AMF Harley 350SS (1976-1977); Yamaha XS650 (1977-1979); 2012 Yamaha XVS1300A Midnight Star, Dark Grey Metallic G (2014-2015)
wimg is offline  
post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 10-27-2018, 04:15 PM
Senior Member
NorthernRider's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: New Brunswick, Canada
Posts: 2,034
Welcome from Atlantic Canada, Pim. I'm afraid I can't help with your question but I'm sure someone here can help. Or possibly take to one of the shops Wim knows about. From all the work he's done on his bike I have no doubt he knows some good, reliable and honest places. And yes, please post a pic of your ride. We love pics here!

2007 Vulcan Nomad
V&H exhaust

2000 V Star 1100 Classic (Sold)
All stock except for:
Kuryakyn Grips
4" Risers
Switchblade Quick Release Windshield
Ugly but somewhat functional saddlebags
NorthernRider is online now  
Sponsored Links
post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 10-27-2018, 04:53 PM
Senior Member
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 5,087
your engine has pushrods and rocker arms, so its not a timing chain

I dont know if your engine has a small chain driving the rotor on the alternator, and what kind of noise that would make if it did

the real question is: has the engine always made this noise, or is it something new?

Its the new or different noises you have to be worried about. That indicates something has changed, and its probably not good.

If the noise has always been there, a different type of engine oil might quiet it down some.

Both my 650 and Royal Star make a sound like something is scraping, a bit like when you try to clear something from the back of your throat. They seem to make the sound more when the engine is hot. The only thing I can think of might be the cam chain sliding on the tensioner. They both do it, the 650 has always done it, and its got 41,000 miles on it and runs fine, so I just ignore it.

Engines do make noise. Air cooled engines make more noise. Its a motorcycle.
KCW is online now  
post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 10-27-2018, 06:50 PM
lesblank's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 3,998
Welcome from Houston, Texas. Glad you joined us. Here's a few interesting threads to check out when you get a chance.

Ride often and safe.

2001 Vstar 1100 Classic (sold), Cobra Slash Cut full exhaust, Dropped 1 inch with lowering links, ORK, 4.5 inch handlebar risers, Ultimate passenger seat, Passenger pegs moved forward 4 inches, Handlebar clock, KN air filter, Viking saddlebags, Additional rear lighting
Loose nut "me" behind the bars
2006 Harley Electra Glide Ultra Classic
lesblank is online now  
post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 10-27-2018, 07:05 PM
lesblank's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 3,998
This has been posted here before but I could not find the link. It's long but hope it helps.

This is the official tech bulletin from Yamaha 2/2/05

Explanation of engine mechanical noise characteristics

Please use the information in this bulletin to assist you in handling customer concerns about normal engine noise

Yamaha designed the Raider to be a very special motorcycle, the heart of which is it's enormous v-twin engine. Our goals were to build a big-bore, high torque engine in the tradition of classic motorcycles that have long been part of the American landscape. We also wanted it to have the exceptionally clean, muscular lines that without a doubt would draw attention to the Road Star.

Several engineering decisions were made to accomplish our goals. For example, we chose traditional no-fuss air-cooling so as not to have a radiator detract from the bikes clean lines. We chose proven push-rod valve actuation to give the engine it's particular style, as well as it's particular height and weight distribution characteristics. We also gave it 98-102-cubic inch displacement-bigger than many car engines-with massive internal components like a crankshaft that alone weighs a hefty 45lbs.

If a customer should question the overall engine noise level, explain to them that certain mechanical operating noises from the engine are expected, and the Raider is no exception. It has engine-operating sounds that are inherent precisely because of the type of engine that it is. The air cooled engine design used for the Raider, unlike liquid-cooled engines, does not have a sound deadening , liquid-filled jacket surrounding most of the sound-producing mechanical engine components. What is at issue is what are normal and abnormal noises.

Remind the customer that this is a very large air-cooled engine. Aluminum and other metal components expand when they get hot, and the engine is designed with operating tolerances to accommodate for this expected characteristic of the metal. The result is that the customer will likely hear more overall mechanical noises from the engine when it's hot and the oil is thinner.

Above all, make sure the customer is aware that the Raider engine is proving itself to be extremely reliable and we are confident that Raider will deliver trustworthy performance for years to come. assure them that normal mechanical noises are not the sign of impending engine failure.

Engine Noise Analysis
tapping noise from camshaft area

Normal Noise
During initial engine start-up, the customer may occasionally hear a tapping noise from the camshaft area and, within a few minutes, the noise subsides. explain that this is due to extra clearance at the push rod end before the hydraulic lifter is pumped up. When the engine is turned off and it stops in a position where one of the valves is open, that lifter will bleed down over time due to the constant pressure applied to the lifter by the valve spring. When the engine is restarted, a small amount of air may enter the lifter and it can take a few minutes for the air to bleed out of the lifter and self adjust to proper clearance.
Abnormal Noise
Constant tapping noise regardless of engine temperature - may be caused by what is called a flat lifter. if the piston inside the hydraulic lifter becomes scratched, the lifter will not be able to hold the compressed oil inside to take up the valve/push rod clearance. explain that a failed lifter will need to be replaced.

Ticking Noise from Cylinder Head Area

Normal Noise
Explain that a light ticking noise is normal due to the compact air-cooled design of the cylinder heads, which allows the sound of rocker arm loading/unloading and valve-to-valve eat contact to be heard. Clarify that the ticking noise may increase slightly as the engine gets hot where the engine parts expand and the oil thins down.
Abnormal Noise
A consistently loud ticking noise, regardless of engine temperature may be caused by an improper valve clearance adjustment. Explain that this engine is designed with 2 intake valves and 2 exhaust vales per cylinder. The single rocker opens and closes both valves at the same time. One side of the rocker is nonadjustable and the clearance is self adjusted by the hydraulic lifter. The other side is adjustable and must be adjusted so the valve contact point is the same as the other side.

Knocking Noise from Crankshaft Area

Normal Noise
When an extremely hot engine is idling, the customer may hear what some describe as a light knocking noise coming from the crankshaft area, primarily from the right side. The noise is more pronounced if the idle speed drops below 900rpm. this is a normal engine noise.
Explain that the Raider engine is designed to produce very high torque at low engine operating rpm. Because of this low operating rpm, for the alternator to produce sufficient electrical output to support the system, the alternator is driven off of a jackshaft which is geared to the crankshaft and spins at approximately 2 time the engine rpm.
As the engine heats up and the aluminum crankcase expands, the gear lash (clearance) is increased between the alternator shaft drive and driven gear. Inform the customer that, normally, the oil viscosity dampens the gear contact surfaces and helps reduce mechanical noise. However, in this case, the oil is thin which reduces the damping effect.
Under these conditions, if the machine is put into 1st gear and the engine is loaded down below 500 rpm with the brakes applied, the described knocking noise will become even more pronounced. Explain that this is because of several factors. 1st, the ignition timing is set for 900 rpm idle speed. At below 500 rpm, the timing is too far advanced and causes early combustion which will try to force the piston down in the opposite direction. 2nd, at such low rpm, the oil pressure is also very low which affect the damping effect at crankshaft plain bearings. Combine these factors with the slow spinning alternator shaft which is juddering from the magnetic field of the alternator rotor, the engine will make some mechanical noises. Reassure the customer that this is common with any engine design and does not indicate excessive wear/clearance of components or impending failure.
Abnormal Noise
If the engine is consistently making what is described as a knocking noise regardless of engine temperature or load, convey that it may be due to a bearing or bearing surface failure at the upper or lower connecting rod or crankshaft plain bearings. if your customer is concerned that a normal operating noise is impending bearing failure, remind him or her that bearing failures get progressively worse in a short time. if the noise hasn't been getting worse or even seems to "fix itself" from time to time, it's not a bearing failure.
wimg and KCW like this.

2001 Vstar 1100 Classic (sold), Cobra Slash Cut full exhaust, Dropped 1 inch with lowering links, ORK, 4.5 inch handlebar risers, Ultimate passenger seat, Passenger pegs moved forward 4 inches, Handlebar clock, KN air filter, Viking saddlebags, Additional rear lighting
Loose nut "me" behind the bars
2006 Harley Electra Glide Ultra Classic
lesblank is online now  
post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 10-27-2018, 07:12 PM
Senior Member
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 5,087
thanks les, I was thinking about that bulletin, but did not remember where to find it.

It says the alternator is shaft driven, not by a chain, and it spins twice as fast as the crank, and it does make noise at low RPM.
lesblank likes this.
KCW is online now  
post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-07-2018, 05:54 AM
Keith Post's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 5,797
Hi Pim,
Welcome to the forum from East Tennessee.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Keith Post is online now  
Sponsored Links

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Star Motorcycle Forums: Star Raider, V-Max, V-Star, Road-Star Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome