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2009 vstar 950, 2014 Bolt r-spec (R.I.P.)
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I bought this 2009 V-Star 950 from a coworker. One day, it just stopped moving on him. Engine still ran, but he figured it was a clutch issue (nope). Obviously, shop time is expensive, and just to get it diagnosed would have cost him more than he wanted to shell out. I was looking for a project and was pretty certain I knew exactly what killed off this bike. Made an offer and got it out of his way and into mine...
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Let's pop off the pulley cover and see what stories it has to tell...yep...horror stories.
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Red dust of death killed off this transmission at around 30,000 miles. Belt was tensioned waaay too tight when I got it, the 950s should be set to the low end of the spec and maybe less...just enough to keep it on the pulleys. When it is tight, it likes to ride on the outside of the output pulley and that lateral load is what sets off the destruction.

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Some say the engine is out of alignment in the frame and it is impossible to get the belt to track straight. There is no room for shims or movement in the engine mounts, so the easiest way to compensate is to run the belt a bit loose. Yuck.
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Up on the lift so I can pull the wheel, belt and pulley.
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With the wheel and belt on, the front pulley and nut were tight, I couldn't get either to wiggle...As soon as the tension was off of the belt, I didnt even need a breaker bar. The pulley also moved all over the place behind the nut....Scary.
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All that red dust is what is left of the splines....a fine red rusty dust.

Time to shop for parts and figure out how to pull this engine...(I'm actually about ready to put it all back together, I just thought I'd start posting up what I have done up to this point...stay tuned, more incoming.)
 

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2009 vstar 950, 2014 Bolt r-spec (R.I.P.)
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158 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
@Maustarman Has some good videos on taking the fuel tank off as well as removing the engine. Those helped me a ton. I'll skip all those details, but I've got quite a few pics of hose/cable routing and connections. Yes, this is 100% as sketchy as it looks. (2 days after this pic, we had a 5.7 magnitude earthquake with the epicenter only 4 miles away from my house. Needless to say, it would have been a sad outcome).
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Steady....steady....
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Pretty slick the way this engine comes out...
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Got it down off the lift table (lol) and out of the way. Time to step out of my comfort zone...did I mention I have never done an engine rebuild like this before? Dirtbike engines, while sharing many similar aspects, just don't seem as intimidating as this one for some reason...

I did some comparison shopping and at the time, the cheapest replacement engine i could find was about $650. I managed to find a gearset and pulley off a 2017 bolt that only made it 17 miles (sad, but good for me)...less than $100. I love ebay sometimes. $300 in gaskets and o-rings (damn, that stuff adds up). So taking the cost of my time out of the equation, not too bad. Even if this bike never runs again (shhhh), the time I spent learning about everything is worth it to me (that is what i am telling myself now, anyways). I do consider the cost of time normally, but not this time. 馃槤
 

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2009 vstar 950, 2014 Bolt r-spec (R.I.P.)
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158 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Lets see what 30k miles has done to the insides!
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A little crunchy but not terrible...(soda blasting made quick work of this stuff. Also tried 50/50 Acetone+ATF...works really well too with a little elbow grease, but I try not to poison myself if I can avoid it).
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No scoring on the pistons or cylinders, yay. Both sides look to have similar bulid up. Still not looking forward to cleaning all this stuff.
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Outta the way flywheel.
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You're next, clutch...
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I'm gonna need a bigger boat table...
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Splitsville...
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The culprit in it's full glory....GET. OUT!
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What have I gotten myself into?
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Well, all this took place over the course of the last few weeks...just tinkering when I get the chance. I've been cleaning all the parts while I waited for gaskets and whatnot to arrive...
Everything is finally here, so now the fun of attempted re-assembly begins...

By the way...If anybody needs other views of the internals, hit me up, I probably have one...(oh wow, I really hope so, anyway)
 

Administrator - "Loose Nut" - Houston, Texas
2001 Vstar 1100 Classic (sold), 2006 HD Electra Glide Ultra Classic
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Good write up. Carbon was a little heavy. Possibly cheap fuel, too many short trips or too low rpm for extended periods of time. So when you get it back together, top tier fuel and drive it like you stole it. ;)
 

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2009 vstar 950, 2014 Bolt r-spec (R.I.P.)
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158 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Good write up. Carbon was a little heavy. Possibly cheap fuel, too many short trips or too low rpm for extended periods of time. So when you get it back together, top tier fuel and drive it like you stole it. ;)
I think I should be able to handle that. :D
 

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Very nice details. As a 950 owner I am curious as to what started this. I know the PO had this issue but I just wonder what the root cause was... Perhaps when you are done there will be an obvious culprit. Was it lack of maintenance on the spline? The wrong type of lube? I hate seeing the red dust. I work around machinery and when you see that you just have that ohhhh crap feeling....Good Luck!
 

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Looks like that drive output shaft aint cheap. Anywhere from $140.00 to $205.00

I guess anybody with a 950 needs to check out the belt tension.
Probably no matter what ya ride it wouldn't be a bad idea to check the belt tension. I'm definitely going to look at mine.

It amazes me that these polychain belts don't seem to stretch any even over long term.
They are one tough belt. I used to sell them in my other life.
 

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2009 vstar 950, 2014 Bolt r-spec (R.I.P.)
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158 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well now I have to get it put back together...I just totaled my Bolt in a 70 mph low side yesterday. Stay safe out there..and smart..It was all 100% my dumbass fault. So pissed off at myself. I'm only typing this because I was wearing full gear head to toe (Saint unbreakable jeans...I only scraped off a belt loop!). So lucky in a million different ways. Also...2020 needs to GTFO....this year, I swear. I may not leave my house again until 2021.

Very nice details. As a 950 owner I am curious as to what started this. I know the PO had this issue but I just wonder what the root cause was... Perhaps when you are done there will be an obvious culprit. Was it lack of maintenance on the spline? The wrong type of lube? I hate seeing the red dust. I work around machinery and when you see that you just have that ohhhh crap feeling....Good Luck!
Yeah it is from too much tension on the belt. The belt walks outboard on the front and puts a side load on the pulley. There is a belleville washer, which has a slight dish to it so it acts like a tension spring between the nut and pulley. I believe that the washer looses that tension from the side load and flattens out which gives the pulley just enough wiggle room to start the madness. If you are going to check your front pulley and nut, take all the tension off of the belt, otherwise it can mask the wiggles in the early stages.
 

Administrator - "Loose Nut" - Houston, Texas
2001 Vstar 1100 Classic (sold), 2006 HD Electra Glide Ultra Classic
Joined
13,933 Posts
Well now I have to get it put back together...I just totaled my Bolt in a 70 mph low side yesterday. Stay safe out there..and smart..It was all 100% my dumbass fault. So pissed off at myself. I'm only typing this because I was wearing full gear head to toe (Saint unbreakable jeans...I only scraped off a belt loop!). So lucky in a million different ways. Also...2020 needs to GTFO....this year, I swear. I may not leave my house again until 2021.
Sorry to hear about your misshap. Glad you are OK.
 

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2015 V-Star 950T
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162 Posts
... There is a belleville washer, which has a slight dish to it so it acts like a tension spring between the nut and pulley. ...

That washer has been superseded with a new part number. I don't expect Yamaha to admit it, but logic says they are aware of an issue with that washer.
 

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2015 V-Star 950T
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162 Posts
The new one I bought has this part number...90208-22004 Hopefully that is the same new one you are referring to? Especially since partzilla is now at 22-27 days to ship it.
Hmmmm. I replaced mine a couple years ago and found the old and new part numbers for the washer(s) at that time. When I looked just now, the only number listed is 90208-22004-00, so I think everything has cycled through and they are only listing the new one.

However, the nut seems to have been superseded now: old # 90179-22028-00, new # 90179-22028-00

What's even more confusing is why only a few bikes have any issue. But for those that do, it's a real bugger.
 
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Glad to hear you鈥檙e alright! Hope it doesn鈥檛 take too long for you to get the 950 back up and rolling!
 

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2009 vstar 950, 2014 Bolt r-spec (R.I.P.)
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158 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 · (Edited)
Approx 100-150 feet on my back starting at 70 mph. If I only had the waist straps cinched down a bit tighter, I might have escaped more of the back rash (Actually, If I had been less stupid, I would have escaped all of it...smh). Rolled over onto my left forearm at the end and took a hit there as well. Zero holes in my pants, boots, helmet and right glove.
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Yeah, that would have stung a bit...
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I think I need to get a pair of those jeans! That鈥檚 amazing. Again, glad you were able to walk away man.
 

Administrator - "Loose Nut" - Houston, Texas
2001 Vstar 1100 Classic (sold), 2006 HD Electra Glide Ultra Classic
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Super glad you were wearing gear. Good pictures showing damage. Heal quickly.
 
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