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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I started noticing a clicking noise on my bike (2019 MT-09 with about 6000 miles) about 500 miles after installing new tires and setting the chain tension to what "feels right". I used to have the chain tension adjusted per the manual (very tight). Now I have a clicking noise that I can feel and hear. It's coming from the rear end. I found out by putting it on a rear stand and front wheel chock and running the bike. The sound happens in gear and when coasting (in gear with clutch lever pulled in).

I took it to the dealership and they said my rear wheel was misaligned a little. They checked my chain tension and said it felt about right (not per the manual though). They showed me marks on the rear tire after riding it and diagnosing a misaligned wheel. They charged me 1/2 hour of labor and straightened it. The sound is still there though, not changed at all.

I went ahead and road the Tail of the Dragon and the Cherohala Skyway this week on a short mid-week vacation. The sound volume and frequency didn't change over the entire trip, maybe 700 miles and the spirited riding. I normally lube the chain with Dupont Chain Saver every 300 miles. The sound is most noticeable between 40 mph and 50 mph. There has been no change in the sound or feel over those riding days.

I bought a chain alignment tool that clamps onto the rear sprocket. This weekend I'll verify the rear wheel is actually straight.

My suspicion is that my manual spec'd (tight) chain slack damaged something or that I really need to set it that tight again. This weekend I'll tighten the chain to the manual's spec's, verify the rear wheel is straight with my alignment tool, and do a test ride to see if the sound goes away.

If I end up replacing parts to try and fix the problem, what is the best order to try. I'd rather not buy everything all at once. Thanks
 

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I think you've answered your own question. There was no noise before you set the chain slack outwith the manual spec (cos you knew better than Yamaha?)
The chain spec is factory specced because the gearbox sprocket/swingarm spindle/rear axle are all in line with the "average" riders weight on them - that's why the slack "seems" low.
This has been discussed to death on here and no doubt another flood of " I've always set my chains to an inch" brigade will shoot me down in flames..................................
 

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I think you've answered your own question. There was no noise before you set the chain slack outwith the manual spec (cos you knew better than Yamaha?)
The chain spec is factory specced because the gearbox sprocket/swingarm spindle/rear axle are all in line with the "average" riders weight on them - that's why the slack "seems" low.
This has been discussed to death on here and no doubt another flood of " I've always set my chains to an inch" brigade will shoot me down in flames..................................
Nope. The factory setting is done with the bike on the side stand rear suspension extended. When the suspension is loaded with a rider the output shaft/swingarm pivot/rear axle centres are at or close to inline. This tightens the chain from the factory setting and makes it too tight.
I've have spent quite a lot of time establishing the correct slack for my '14 model = 20mm on the sidestand with 12mm more rear ride height than stock. 15mm at stock ride height.
 

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I started noticing a clicking noise on my bike (2019 MT-09 with about 6000 miles)...I went ahead and road the Tail of the Dragon and the Cherohala Skyway this week on a short mid-week vacation. I normally lube the chain with Dupont Chain Saver every 300 miles.
I like the Chain Saver lube and I just love the Cherohala... the Deals Gap Circus, not so much. Sorry I have nothing for you on the clicking except to say that in times past I got rid of it after changing brake pads. Go figure.
 

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Nope. The factory setting is done with the bike on the side stand rear suspension extended. When the suspension is loaded with a rider the output shaft/swingarm pivot/rear axle centres are at or close to inline. This tightens the chain from the factory setting and makes it too tight.
I've have spent quite a lot of time establishing the correct slack for my '14 model = 20mm on the sidestand with 12mm more rear ride height than stock. 15mm at stock ride height.
I think we're thinking along the same lines LouG.
I wasn't being completely clear in my description but I was theorising that, if the shaft/swingarm/axle are all in line then the chain cannot get any tighter, therefore to eliminate rattle and slop then 15mm at stock ride height suffices. Your additional ride height will necessitate additional slack (as you've already established) because it probably naturally runs with the axle slightly lower than a straight line and when you hit a big bump then the chain will tighten.
The XSR manual has 2 specs for chain slack, depending on the year the manual was written - one measures the slack on the sidestand, another measures the distance the chain is from the arm lower edge but both measurements give the same results.
When I changed the shock unit on my XSR I moved the suspension through the full arc on a centre stand to establish how much varience there was in full movement and decided what was ideal slack from there. The higher value of 15mm of the Factory 5 - 15mm spec is what I decided suited my setup. Any more on stock ride height results in driveline slop (especially when using a quickshifter) and noise as the chain hits the arm.
 

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For the OP,
Put the bike on the rear stand again and spin the rear wheel in neutral with the engine off. Do you still get the clicking?
Is it once per rev (rear brake, nail in tire etc)
Or once per 2-3 revs of the wheel. (Chain, Wheel bearing)
Or multiple time per one wheel rev (front sprocket area)

For DW.
Did the same thing when I changed my shock. Used a straight edge and wooden blocks under the rear tire to get all the axis aligned. Then adjusted the chain at this tightest alignment so the slack was just being eliminated (it is a subjective feel thing). Re-assembled and measured the slack at the back of the cat converter - 30mm. Much looser than the 10mm on the sidestand noted in the manual. That 10mm was about the amount of slack I had with 3 axis aligned.

Too tight - loads the bearings and prevents any relief in load on the chain, so the grease gets squeezed out between the rivets and bushings they run in, resulting in rapid chain stretch.
I think the manual sets the chain too tight to help mask the abruptness of the throttle response on the earlier bikes.

But it is your bike, you paid for it, feel free to maintain it the way you want.
 

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For the OP,
Put the bike on the rear stand again and spin the rear wheel in neutral with the engine off. Do you still get the clicking?
Is it once per rev (rear brake, nail in tire etc)
Or once per 2-3 revs of the wheel. (Chain, Wheel bearing)
Or multiple time per one wheel rev (front sprocket area)

For DW.
Did the same thing when I changed my shock. Used a straight edge and wooden blocks under the rear tire to get all the axis aligned. Then adjusted the chain at this tightest alignment so the slack was just being eliminated (it is a subjective feel thing). Re-assembled and measured the slack at the back of the cat converter - 30mm. Much looser than the 10mm on the sidestand noted in the manual. That 10mm was about the amount of slack I had with 3 axis aligned.

Too tight - loads the bearings and prevents any relief in load on the chain, so the grease gets squeezed out between the rivets and bushings they run in, resulting in rapid chain stretch.
I think the manual sets the chain too tight to help mask the abruptness of the throttle response on the earlier bikes.

But it is your bike, you paid for it, feel free to maintain it the way you want.
Interesting!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I think you've answered your own question. There was no noise before you set the chain slack outwith the manual spec (cos you knew better than Yamaha?)
The chain spec is factory specced because the gearbox sprocket/swingarm spindle/rear axle are all in line with the "average" riders weight on them - that's why the slack "seems" low.
This has been discussed to death on here and no doubt another flood of " I've always set my chains to an inch" brigade will shoot me down in flames..................................
I just read some threads on here about the chain slack. It seemed most people thought the Yamaha spec was too tight. It seemed too tight to me, from my VAST experience. :LOL: I'm not that experienced with motorcycles. I've had a Ninja 650 and a Z900 before this MT-09.

For the OP,
Put the bike on the rear stand again and spin the rear wheel in neutral with the engine off. Do you still get the clicking?
Is it once per rev (rear brake, nail in tire etc)
Or once per 2-3 revs of the wheel. (Chain, Wheel bearing)
Or multiple time per one wheel rev (front sprocket area)
I'll do that tonight. Then I'll set the chain slack to Yamaha spec's and repeat. I do know that the sound is coming from the rear. I could hear that when I put it on a rear stand and spun the rear wheel before.
 

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I recently replaced my chain & sprockets because I was hearing a clicking sound coming from the drive line. The owner I bought the bike from had changed out the stock 525 chain with a 520 set of sprockets and chain. Much to my surprise, when I pulled off the cover to change the front sprocket the nut that holds it on wasn't even hand tight. It obviously hadn't been torqued correctly nor the retaining nut locked properly. The front sprocket had moved about 1/64 of an inch away from the motor causing the chain links to slowly mill down the sprocket and causing the noise.

The new chain and properly installed sprockets fixed the clicking noise.

Probably at least worth checking.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I recently replaced my chain & sprockets because I was hearing a clicking sound coming from the drive line. The owner I bought the bike from had changed out the stock 525 chain with a 520 set of sprockets and chain. Much to my surprise, when I pulled off the cover to change the front sprocket the nut that holds it on wasn't even hand tight. It obviously hadn't been torqued correctly nor the retaining nut locked properly. The front sprocket had moved about 1/64 of an inch away from the motor causing the chain links to slowly mill down the sprocket and causing the noise.

The new chain and properly installed sprockets fixed the clicking noise.

Probably at least worth checking.
Well, I set my chain slack back to the Yamaha recommended 10mm while on the side stand. The noise is exactly the same, on a stand and when riding. In frustration, I ordered a set of rear wheel bearings last night. I'll start looking at sprockets and chains. It's more likely that the chain and sprockets are the issue, rather than the bearings. The bike only has about 7000 miles on it. The bearings shouldn't be close to wearing out yet.
 

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It's your money, but diagnosis by throwing parts at it is bloody expensive. I'd take the chain off and spin the wheel, stuffed bearings will make a groaning rough noise. Then check the chain and sprockets for any wear where there shouldn't be like on links and the side of the teeth.
Make sure some kid hasn't taped cardboard to the frame and it's being hit by the spokes.
 
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