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#1001906 - 12/04/17 02:07 AM Re: R1150r rockster spline/gearbox integrity [Re: eliastfk93]  
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nrp Offline
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DR has the reasons for spline wear pretty well covered above.

I would add though that there may be an assembly technique combined with the flimsiness of the clutch bell housing - i. e. that big hole to holding the starter that interrupts the engine-side flange. The alignment spools are very short and have only a very short engagement that just might make them marginally prone to cocking when exposed to shear side loads during final assembly pullup.

If the engine - clutch disk - transmission alignment is perfect - the final assembly will maintain alignment as the engine-transmission bolts are drawn up. But if the clutch disk/pack is poorly centered in the flywheel, drawing up the engine transmission bolts will force the clutch disk to drag across the flywheel face possibly cocking those alignment spools. It probably takes over 1000 pounds shear force to drag the clutch disk that way, and would be enough to distort the bell housing with its open section.

A possible solution to a possible problem - insert the clutch release rod and only assemble the transmission to the engine with the clutch pulled in.

Only someone with a lot of field or service experience might be able to verify or disprove these possibilities. I don't have that experience, but am looking at it from the standpoint of 50 years of chasing mechanical engineering screwups.

Last edited by nrp; 12/04/17 02:10 AM.
#1001912 - 12/04/17 08:27 AM Re: R1150r rockster spline/gearbox integrity [Re: Mark C]  
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Craig G. Offline
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Originally Posted by Mark C
I did that mod with no improvement.


Mark - pls elaborate. What specifically did you do and what were the results?

#1001923 - 12/04/17 02:02 PM Re: R1150r rockster spline/gearbox integrity [Re: eliastfk93]  
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Alan Sykes Offline
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I think you're right, NRP. My middle son is a Beemer Motorrad trained wrencher and he says it was definitely factory misalignment during assembly that caused premature spline wear on a smallish batch of 1150 machines.
A problem which the factory consistently refused to either acknowledge or address and was solved by them in later models by the almost total re-design of the motor and transmission units, incorporating the Chinese wet clutch.
Tim was taught in his callow youth years in the training school, NEVER to pull up a gearbox / FD unit to the bell housing in any vehicle re-assembly procedure by heaving on the bell-housing attachment bolts. The two elements must be pushed up together into correct alignment by hand, using the clutch push rod as a centring tool - i.e, the hard way requiring muscle - before attending to any bell-housing bolt torque-values.
And Dirt Riders's tip of how to check spline condition easily and quickly by removing the starter motor is a good 'un.
AL in s.e. Spain.


This is a list of the people I'd trust with my bike
#1001925 - 12/04/17 02:23 PM Re: R1150r rockster spline/gearbox integrity [Re: Alan Sykes]  
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Craig G. Offline
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Originally Posted by Alan Sykes
solved by them in later models by the almost total re-design of the motor and transmission units, incorporating the Chinese wet clutch
.


No doubt you're refering to the wet head design in the above statement. Makes me ask the question... do camheads or hexheads experience spline failure similiar to the 1150?

#1001928 - 12/04/17 02:43 PM Re: R1150r rockster spline/gearbox integrity [Re: Craig G.]  
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dirtrider Offline
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Originally Posted by Craig G.
Originally Posted by Alan Sykes
solved by them in later models by the almost total re-design of the motor and transmission units, incorporating the Chinese wet clutch
.


No doubt you're refering to the wet head design in the above statement. Makes me ask the question... do camheads or hexheads experience spline failure similiar to the 1150?


Morning Craig G

I haven't seen (or know of) a camhead with spline failure. (there might be some but none that I know of in my area or riding groups)

I do know of 2 hexheads (both over 100K) with one having total spline failure & the other needing a new clutch & splines were found to be worn pretty bad at disassembly.


D.R. ___
Sent from my rotory dial wall phone!
#1001931 - 12/04/17 03:04 PM Re: R1150r rockster spline/gearbox integrity [Re: Alan Sykes]  
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dirtrider Offline
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Originally Posted by Alan Sykes
I think you're right, NRP. My middle son is a Beemer Motorrad trained wrencher and he says it was definitely factory misalignment during assembly that caused premature spline wear on a smallish batch of 1150 machines.
A problem which the factory consistently refused to either acknowledge or address and was solved by them in later models by the almost total re-design of the motor and transmission units, incorporating the Chinese wet clutch.
Tim was taught in his callow youth years in the training school, NEVER to pull up a gearbox / FD unit to the bell housing in any vehicle re-assembly procedure by heaving on the bell-housing attachment bolts. The two elements must be pushed up together into correct alignment by hand, using the clutch push rod as a centring tool - i.e, the hard way requiring muscle - before attending to any bell-housing bolt torque-values.
And Dirt Riders's tip of how to check spline condition easily and quickly by removing the starter motor is a good 'un.
AL in s.e. Spain.


Morning Al

Common sense tells me there is no real credibility to some of the above.

First off we have no idea that the problem was at assembly. On some of the worn spline bikes I have seen way too much trans to engine misalignment to be a simple assembly issue. It usually takes a new front trans housing or offset alignment dowels to allow alignment so THAT doesn't point to an assembly issue.

Next, if it was an assembly issue then why would it take a re-design to cure the problem. All it would take is a simple assembly procedure change then monitoring. I would be willing to bet a lot that BMW took a serious look at assembly & handling/fixturing procedures at the first sign of warranty spline issues.

Then we have the re-occurring spline failures on the same bikes at about the same mileage-- Do all the dealer tecs use the same poor assembly procedure & if that is true then why don't we see lot of 1100 bikes with spline failures after a new clutch install?

Next, you never ever use the pushrod for transmission centering/alignment as that is a good way to end up with a bent pushrod. BMW has a special clutch disk centering tool & if used correctly the trans will usually slide right in without the need for any force or push rod use.


D.R. ___
Sent from my rotory dial wall phone!
#1001950 - 12/04/17 09:53 PM Re: R1150r rockster spline/gearbox integrity [Re: eliastfk93]  
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nrp Offline
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Afternoon D.R. -

You are on the right track on this problem and I appreciate that someone understands what I have been bitching about for the last maybe 6 years..

I don't think BMW technicians ever figured out the spline wear problem. Somewhere in the management of all this warranty and service problem, there has been a high level assumption made that no one at lower levels really thought about and defended the problem and its source to management. And this is why the design approach was radically revised As an example, the number of posted theories and red herrings that have come up on this issue over the last 15 years suggest that it is not a simple deal. One that seems to be missed by many is the barrel shaped wear pattern that is said is due to flywheel run out. Easy and obvious to check, but the disk spider design already has appropriate compliance in that direction. It takes a specially made fixture to do a radial alignment check. No one seems to be doing this, and I have only sent my free rig to a couple of other riders. Of course i think the barrel shaft shape is due to differential hardness in the mating parts and the need for wear to be conjugal. Even other obvious competent high level mechanics disagreed with me (not you though - THX). FWIW I've only seen this failure on a couple of R1100 bikes, and never on any R1150s etc. My experience is very limited but from work I had access to a couple of gear/spline gurus (one now dead, and one from Russia!). They immediately confirmed radial misalignment.

I too been suspicious of the housing accuracy. This too is impossible to check as a loose part and it may simply be different details in the original machining setup as the raw casting distorts differently depending on how much Fritz torques the hold-down fixture. Day shift-nite shift problems? Who knows but BMW never got to the bottom of it.

Maybe there is more than one problem source? And maybe once the crankshaft rear main bearing is worn that future failures are inevitable.

I agree the clutch push rod should not be used for preliminary alignment of the engine and transmission. Thas should be done with 8 mm guide studs. It should only be slipped in and used to release the clutch during final pull up. Again i am reaching for straws here.

#1001955 - 12/04/17 11:12 PM Re: R1150r rockster spline/gearbox integrity [Re: nrp]  
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dirtrider Offline
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Originally Posted by nrp
Afternoon D.R. -

You are on the right track on this problem and I appreciate that someone understands what I have been bitching about for the last maybe 6 years..

I don't think BMW technicians ever figured out the spline wear problem. Somewhere in the management of all this warranty and service problem, there has been a high level assumption made that no one at lower levels really thought about and defended the problem and its source to management. And this is why the design approach was radically revised As an example, the number of posted theories and red herrings that have come up on this issue over the last 15 years suggest that it is not a simple deal. One that seems to be missed by many is the barrel shaped wear pattern that is said is due to flywheel run out. Easy and obvious to check, but the disk spider design already has appropriate compliance in that direction. It takes a specially made fixture to do a radial alignment check. No one seems to be doing this, and I have only sent my free rig to a couple of other riders. Of course i think the barrel shaft shape is due to differential hardness in the mating parts and the need for wear to be conjugal. Even other obvious competent high level mechanics disagreed with me (not you though - THX). FWIW I've only seen this failure on a couple of R1100 bikes, and never on any R1150s etc. My experience is very limited but from work I had access to a couple of gear/spline gurus (one now dead, and one from Russia!). They immediately confirmed radial misalignment.

I too been suspicious of the housing accuracy. This too is impossible to check as a loose part and it may simply be different details in the original machining setup as the raw casting distorts differently depending on how much Fritz torques the hold-down fixture. Day shift-nite shift problems? Who knows but BMW never got to the bottom of it.

Maybe there is more than one problem source? And maybe once the crankshaft rear main bearing is worn that future failures are inevitable.

I agree the clutch push rod should not be used for preliminary alignment of the engine and transmission. Thas should be done with 8 mm guide studs. It should only be slipped in and used to release the clutch during final pull up. Again i am reaching for straws here.


Evening NRP

Yes, definitely lots of speculation on the spline wear issue with some holding credibility & some really reaching for the stars.

Working for a major auto company I just can't believe that BMW didn't try to find the root on this as soon as warranty claims started piling up. My firm belief is that BMW qualified all the parts involved & set up spot quality checks on those parts as well going over the assembly process & fixturing pretty quickly.

I'm not saying that BMW didn't have a run of out-of-spec parts but no way do I believe that they didn't get a handle on that area pretty darn quick.

One thing that I keep thinking about is maybe the problem wasn't happening at original parts machining, or parts handling, or even at original build assembly. (that part of the failure chain would very easy for BMW to isolate & correct quickly)

An old dealer tec friend of mine had a theory that sort of holds water (at least in my mind)-- He claims he vaguely remembers uncrating the BMW 1150 era bikes & that they were shipped with no front wheel installed (this I know for a fact). His remembering is there were wood chalks or cribbing under the chassis in the rear of engine transmission area with the bike strapped down pretty tight.

These bikes were mainly shipped by ship so a dropped shipping crate with a motorcycle inside would hit the deck, or ground, or ??? pretty darn hard. His though is that due to the chalking or cribbing under the bike that a dropped crate could bend the front trans housing enough to cause a misalignment problem. (as I'm sure you know it doesn't take much input shaft misalignment to cause the basic spline joint to work as a gear-set instead of a spline coupling). He "thinks" that BMW changed the shipping crate strap down & under-bike support area on the later BMW 1150 bikes.

I do know that I saw a BMW tec/porter/whatever drop a motorcycle crate with a 1200RT inside about 4' when he was unloading it off a delivery truck with a small fork lift.

My friend was a pretty sharp tec but unfortunately he says uncrating bikes was not something he regularly did, or did often.

It's a credible theory anyhow as well as possibly explaining why it might have taken BMW a l-o-o-o-n-g time to identify.

I have heard (no confirmation though) that European 1150 bikes had a lot less spline failures. If this is true then most were probably not shipped by ship or stacked 10 crates high so it could fit the above theory I suppose.

Just another random theory tossed in the ring, eh?


D.R. ___
Sent from my rotory dial wall phone!
#1002058 - 12/07/17 02:17 PM Re: R1150r rockster spline/gearbox integrity [Re: eliastfk93]  
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Alan Sykes Offline
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Almeria, Spain
Wow !

Good ole Dirt Rider now seems now to have come up with a logical explanation as to why :-

a) it was only a set number of 1150 bikes that exhibited premature spline wear. And

b) far fewer 'local market' bikes ever had the problem.

It's because of crate-drops during shipping by sea to overseas markets !

A bike that had been heavily dropped prior to delivery was likely to be bent out-of-true at the crucial point - and bikes delivered to EU customers from Berlin are delivered by BMW's own sub-contracted trucker, Aichinger GmbH, and thus are less likely to have been dropped sufficiently hard to cause the damage.

On the ADV Rider forum, in the ancient thread that discusses this topic at the most detailed length, which I've studied in detail for days in the past, there is an astonishing total of thirty-plus pages, and none of the experts expounding their theories has ever considered this shipping / crate-dropping possibility. DR - I bet your pal is spot-on with his !

My inside contact on the shop-floor in Berlin, a team-leader called Helmut who's now retired, was always quite circumspect about the possibility of premature spline wear being caused by an assembly-monkey or machining-robot fault involving mis-placed dowels on the rim of the bell-housing. He only ever begrudgingly allowed the possibility on the few occasions whenever we chatted about it in a Berlin Stube over jugs of ale.

V-e-r-y
I-n-t-e-r-e-s-t-i-n-g.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=krD4hdGvGHM

AL in s.e. Spain

Last edited by Alan Sykes; 12/07/17 02:21 PM.

This is a list of the people I'd trust with my bike
#1002060 - 12/07/17 04:02 PM Re: R1150r rockster spline/gearbox integrity [Re: Alan Sykes]  
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You said VERY................Interesting! I would have used a linked image, but they are getting a bit troublesome so I have it attached. grin

Alan I just noticed you are posting from Spain. My attached photo is from a skit on a popular American TV show Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In that used the quote "very interesting" from 1968 to 1973. Very Interesting

Attached Files
Last edited by sardineone; 12/07/17 04:09 PM.

You are what you have ridden!
-------------------------------------------------
George Martin
R1200ST(ESA equipped)
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