Exhaust rattle

Engine, exhaust & cooling mods or problems. If it has to do with cooling, anything within the crank case, or exhaust, it goes here.
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Turbojoe
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I ride: 2004 Vulcan 500
Location: Mesa, AZ

Re: Exhaust rattle

Postby Turbojoe » Fri Oct 25, 2013 7:09 pm

If anyone has seen an issue on a Vulcan 500 it's Biker Bill. He has put more miles on a motorcycle than most put on a car. I remember his posts about 20-25K pipe failures. Mine was 25K. I won't fight it again when this one fails. I'll buy new again. I didn't even save the old one I was so pissed off at it. I scored the brand new pipe for $100.00 shipped from ebay. After putting up with that blasted rattle for a while the new one was worth every penny. Good to hear yours probably isn't a pipe failure.

Joe
The nonsensical ravings of a lunatic mind.....

2004 Vulcan 500

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Triangles
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Re: Exhaust rattle

Postby Triangles » Fri Oct 25, 2013 8:23 pm

Below are pictures of my exhaust. The LH side is the pipe on the right in the picture. As you can clearly see the inner pipe is cracked in the usual place and is broken about 1/2 way around the pipe. The RH pipe shows what I can best describe as the metal scabbing and flaking off.
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These are the "vent holes" I mentioned in a previous post. They appear to be there to let air in and out of the void between the inner and outer pipes for thermal expansion/contraction. They appear to be the only unsealed area. There is exhaust coming out of these holes on both sides. Obviously more on the left hand side.
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I had also noticed my exhaust getting obnoxiously louder. Either that or my ears were becoming more sensitive. I looked down the muffler and to my surprise could see right thru it! I grabbed the other one and the same thing a big freaking hole straight thru!
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Words cannot express how disgusted I am at this. I have been struggling to keep this post civilized. Come on Kawasaki! Not only the pipes but both mufflers as well are shot after a mere 21k miles!!! WTF!?! :evil:

For S&G's I'm going to plug the vent holes with JB Weld and see how long this POS holds together.

Update 7/15/2014:
Well the epoxy held until mid June I noticed my exhaust note becoming obnoxious again. I also noticed a little more bluing of the LH side pipe. I got around to taking the exhaust off and welding up the holes.
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The break in the pipe doesn't seem to have gotten much bigger over the last 9 months. That's encouraging.
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Since I now had raw metal I decided some corrosion protection was in order. I used some Rustoleum 2000˚F primer and paint.
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The bike is relatively quiet again and the engine sounds like an angry sewing machine again :D I get an occasional rattle but it's really not that bad. BTW I added about 3.5K miles farther along than when I first posted this.
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Triangles
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Re: Exhaust rattle

Postby Triangles » Tue Nov 05, 2013 12:34 pm

Plugging the vent holes helps muffle the rattle CONSIDERABLY to something I can live with! The Epoxy I used is slowly burning up. Eventually I will find someone with a welder and I'll have them weld over the vent holes. Most of my riding is on the freeway or down country roads where I'm going fast enough I don't hear the rattle and it doesn't bother me. I wonder how long it will be until my chrome starts to blue from the hot gasses now contacting the outer pipe.
ImageImage

bikerbill
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Joined: Tue Mar 02, 2010 2:07 pm
I ride: 1997 Vulcan 500LTD named Hidalgo

Re: Exhaust rattle

Postby bikerbill » Sun Feb 16, 2014 2:56 am

Hey guys. You know that if you wait long enough the inner pipe will 'flake off' and collect inside the muffler where it is easy to remove. ;) That is if you can put up with the rattle in the meantime. (That's how I'm still running the same header pipes that were on Hidalgo when I restored her at 108,000 miles.)
--
'Biker' Bill
'97 EN500LTD 'Hidalgo'
199,000+ miles so far
VROC #3833
IronButt #6024

SlipStreamer Enterprise II, Vista Cruise,
Cobra Spots, Drifter solo seat,
Pro-Tac backrest, ScottOiler,
F&S luggage rack, LED & HID lights,
4-gal AUX fuel tank

GeorgiaRider
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Re: Exhaust rattle

Postby GeorgiaRider » Tue Feb 18, 2014 5:55 am

I have a small rattle in my right pipe. A little annoying, but I'm putting up with it. 36K miles on it. Can't seem to catch up with BikerBill!
GeorgiaRider
2006 Vulcan 500

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Turbojoe
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I ride: 2004 Vulcan 500
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Re: Exhaust rattle

Postby Turbojoe » Tue Feb 18, 2014 6:49 pm

Just clicked over 30K this morning. The left header is starting to get a little noisier. Not bad but I can hear that death rattle starting. I'd better start watching ebay again and see if I can snag a deal like I got on the right side. When the right side went it was just too much noise to put up with for me. I felt like I was riding a junk pile. I do a lot of stop and go so it really gets annoying.

Glad to see you here Bill. Man, you're so Vulcan I'll bet your ears are pointed! :mrgreen: Your experience will be helpful for a lot of people. Me included.

Joe
The nonsensical ravings of a lunatic mind.....

2004 Vulcan 500

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Turbojoe
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I ride: 2004 Vulcan 500
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Re: Exhaust rattle

Postby Turbojoe » Mon Mar 31, 2014 10:08 pm

Deja Vu all over again...... Left header is definitely failing now. It doesn't rattle quite like the right side did. It's more like a knock. At first I thought it was engine internal but I can rev it while I listen at the header and it's right there. I whacked the header with a dead blow hammer today and confirmed it's in the pipe. I'm not even going to pull it off for a look. I'm not going to waste money on a used one so I'll be scouring ebay again in hopes I can find another new one for a good deal like I did for the right side.

Joe
The nonsensical ravings of a lunatic mind.....

2004 Vulcan 500

User avatar
Turbojoe
Posts: 162
Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2011 10:35 pm
I ride: 2004 Vulcan 500
Location: Mesa, AZ

Re: Exhaust rattle

Postby Turbojoe » Tue Apr 15, 2014 7:53 pm

Haven't had any luck finding a brand new left side header for a reasonable price but did find a low mileage used one on ebay for $64.00 shipped. They posted a picture of the inside and there are no visible cracks. They say it has 2500 miles from a wrecked 2009. We'll see how honest they are when it gets here. I said I'd never buy a used one but for this price I had to give it a shot......

Joe
The nonsensical ravings of a lunatic mind.....

2004 Vulcan 500

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Triangles
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Re: Exhaust rattle

Postby Triangles » Wed Apr 16, 2014 3:24 pm

Joe I covered up the "vent holes" with JB weld epoxy as shown above. I am not sure why but it has virtually eliminated the rattle. If the epoxy ever comes off I'm going to weld the hole shut. If I ever become a skilled welder I may even try making my own stainless pipes.
ImageImage

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Turbojoe
Posts: 162
Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2011 10:35 pm
I ride: 2004 Vulcan 500
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Re: Exhaust rattle

Postby Turbojoe » Wed Apr 16, 2014 6:32 pm

You know right after I clicked "buy it now" I started thinking I probably should have tried what you did to put off the inevitable for a while. I have noticed a drop in performance and gas mileage though (just like when the right side broke) so with the price I got the "new" header for I'll just toss it on there this weekend and be done with it. With the shorter ride to work I now have I should get at least two + years out of these pipes. The right side was brand new when I bought it so they'll probably go again at around the same time.

Joe
The nonsensical ravings of a lunatic mind.....

2004 Vulcan 500

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Triangles
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Re: Exhaust rattle

Postby Triangles » Wed Apr 23, 2014 11:00 pm

The video below was of my new helmet cover. Please try not to laugh so hard you hurt yourself. Anyway The audio captured the exhaust note fairly well and that's why I posted it here. At these low RPM I can't really detect any exhaust rattling. I only notice it at higher RPMs on the open road if I am listening for it. The Chrome has started bluing fairly bad where the inner pipe broke on the left pipe.
ImageImage

User avatar
Turbojoe
Posts: 162
Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2011 10:35 pm
I ride: 2004 Vulcan 500
Location: Mesa, AZ

Re: Exhaust rattle

Postby Turbojoe » Sun May 04, 2014 1:35 pm

I tried plugging the drain hole but unfortunately that didn't help my situation at all. Well I finally got tired of the clangin' and bangin' of the left header and replaced it today. Nice and quiet again and no more embarrassing looks while at a traffic light. Hopefully I'll get at least another two years out of this set of headers.

I love the helmet cover! They're a little pricey for me though at $35.00. If I find a cheaper one I might jump on it.

Joe


Image
The nonsensical ravings of a lunatic mind.....

2004 Vulcan 500

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Triangles
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Re: Exhaust rattle

Postby Triangles » Tue Jul 15, 2014 9:02 pm

LOL yeah the helmet cover was a gift. I don't know that I would have spent the money on it either. I updated my 10/15/13 post with updated pictures. The epoxy has failed and I welded up the vent holes. I think this should hold for another 25-50K miles!
ImageImage

bikerbill
Posts: 69
Joined: Tue Mar 02, 2010 2:07 pm
I ride: 1997 Vulcan 500LTD named Hidalgo

Re: Exhaust rattle

Postby bikerbill » Sat Aug 20, 2016 1:40 pm

Hey Guys!

I have been having some performance and fuel economy issues with Hidalgo lately and decided to replace those 'rattling header pipes'.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=an0X6JvdD2M

I should have changed them a long time ago. :)
--
'Biker' Bill
'97 EN500LTD 'Hidalgo'
199,000+ miles so far
VROC #3833
IronButt #6024

SlipStreamer Enterprise II, Vista Cruise,
Cobra Spots, Drifter solo seat,
Pro-Tac backrest, ScottOiler,
F&S luggage rack, LED & HID lights,
4-gal AUX fuel tank

User avatar
Triangles
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Posts: 776
Joined: Sun Dec 27, 2009 10:35 pm
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Re: Exhaust rattle

Postby Triangles » Sat Aug 20, 2016 8:57 pm

WOW! That is impressive. I'm surprised your pipes aren't more blue. I don't get to ride nearly as much as I would like to anymore. Gonna be a few decades for me to catch up to your mileage and that's assuming you stop now! :lol:

Hmmm looks like the "video" bb code doesn't work anymore. Gonna have to try to figure that one out.
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