XT 660 R 2004 > Failed rear suspension!

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Johan (SWE)

XT 660 R 2004 > Failed rear suspension!

#1 Beitrag von Johan (SWE) » 18. Aug 2006 16:59

Hello everyone!

First of all, I am sorry for writing this message in English. What I have to say is more important, and I am too angry to try out my poor German right now. If anyone could translate this post into German, please do so straight away. This is very urgent!

I am the owner of a Yamaha XT 660 R from the 24th of September 2004,
with 60.000 kilometers on the counter.

I have been riding the motorcycle to and from work, The Hague > Utrecht, about 150 daily kilometers back and forth. In addition to this, I have made several trips to Scandinavia, as well as a long trip to North West Italy during the summer of 2005.

This year, I attempted to reach the North Cape in Norway. I left the Netherlands in the first week of July and headed up North. Just outside the city of MOLDE, roughly 75 km west of TRONDHEIM, in NORWAY, the rear suspension broke down completely. As a result, the motorcycle was lowered the entire length of the suspension which is 20 centimeters.

At the time the suspension broke down, the motorcycle was not carrying more bagage than the allowed 186 kilos including the driver. A quick investigation revealed that the two pegs holding the preload adjustment ring, with positions 1 through 5 (2 is standard setting), were broken off, causing the entire spring to slide upwards.

This might be an individual and isolated case of bad luck, or a faulty part, but I urge all German speaking owners to check out their XT 660 R from 2004 and newer for wear and tear on the pegs that hold the preload adjustment ring in position.

It is important that you understand that a failed rear suspension can cause a very serious accident! Imagine yourself on a 'bundesweg', at 120 km/h, when your motorcycle makes a cracking sound sending you and your motorcycle 20 centimeters closer to the ground! This surprise can catch you offguard, sending you straight through the bend rather than following it!

Check your rear suspension, and if you see clear evidence of damaged pegs, please let your motorcycle dealer investigate this further!

You do not hear me complain about worn out chains, sprockets, brake pads, brake discs, ball bearings, or tyres, which I all regard as consumption material and replace regularily. You will hear me complain when I get confronted with a banana saddle or broken suspension!

My motorcycle is 23 months old. I admit that I have been driving a lot, there are not many bikes with so many kilometers on the meter in the EU region. Nevertheless, the rear suspension should last longer than 60.000 kilometers shouldn't it?

In this case, Yamaha Norway and Yamaha Europe, has helped me out and repaired the motorcycle under warranty at no cost to me. I am extremly grateful for their efforts to arrange the spare part within two weeks, and have the motorcycle ready to go. However, I am not hoping that this incident will happen again with other XT 660 R motorcycles. I consider myself lucky, since I did not get involve in an accident.

Weblink to foto's, the day after the incident:

http://swede.smugmug.com/gallery/1787685

Regards,

Johan

Member No. 7
http://WWW.XT6.NL

popans
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#2 Beitrag von popans » 19. Aug 2006 00:42

Hallo Johan! Vielen Dank für Deinen Beitrag. Ich habe ihn ins Deutsche übersetzt:


Hallo zusammen!

Zunächst einmal möchte ich mich dafür entschuldigen, daß ich dieses Nachricht in englischer Sprache verfasse. Was ich zu sagen habe, ist aber zu wichtig und ich mache mir Sorgen, es mit meinem mäßigen Deutschkentnissen verständlich vermitteln zu können. Wenn jemand dieses Post ins Deutsche übersetzen kann, soll er das bitte tun.

Ich bin Halter einer Yamaha XT 660 R, EZ 24.09.2004, die 60.000 km gelaufen hat.

Ich fahre mit dem Krad regelmäßig zur Arbeit von Hague nach Utrecht und zurück, was einer täglichen km-Leistung von etwa 150 km entspricht. Zudem habe ich mehrere Reisen nach Skandinavien sowie eine lange Reise nach Nord-West-Italien im Sommer 2005 unternommen.

Dieses Jahr beabsichtigte ich mit der XT zum Nordkap in Norwegen zu fahren. Ich verließ die Niederlande in der ersten Juli-Woche und fuhr nordwärts. Nachdem ich gerade die Stadt Molde, etwa 75 km westlich von Trondheim (also in Norwegen) gelegen, verlassen hatte, brach das komplette hintere Federbein herunter, was dazu führte, daß das Krad um die gesamte Länge der Feder (20 cm) nach unten versetzt wurde.

Zu der Zeit, als die Federung brach, war das Krad nicht überbeladen; die erlaubten 186 kg Zuladung Fahrer wurden - einschließlich Fahrer - nicht überschritten.
Eine erste Begutachtung des Schadens brachte die Erkenntnis, daß die zwei Zapfen, die den Ring, an dem die Federvorspannung einzustellen ist (in Schritten von 1 bis 5, wobei 2 werksseitig als Standard angegeben ist), festhalten, gebrochen waren, was dazu führte, daß der gesamte Ring nach oben rutschte.

Das kann natürlich auch ein Einzelfall und persönliches Pech sein oder ein nur in meinem Fall fehlerbehaftetes Werkstück.
Aber ich bitte dennoch alle deutsch-sprechenden Halter ihre XT 660 R ab Bj 2004 auf den geschilderten Mangel hin zu überprüfen und ggf. den ordnungsgemäßen Sitz der Zapfen wiederherzustellen.

Ein im Fahrbetrieb versagendes Federbein kann zu einem gefährlichen Unfall führen! Man sollte sich vor Augen führen, was alles passieren kann, wenn dieser Defekt bei Befahrung eines "Bundesweges" bei einer Geschwindigkeit von 120 km/h auftritt und das Krad plötzlich um 20 cm absackt! Der Schreck kann zum Sturz führen oder dazu führen, daß Du aus der Kurve "fliegst", anstatt ihr zu folgen!

Also: Überprüft Eure hintere Federung und wenn es Hinweise auf beschädigte Zapfen in diesem Bereich geben sollte, bringt das Krad zu Eurem Yamaha-Händler, damit der den Defekt näher untersuchen kann!

Ich beschwere mich gewiß nicht über abgenutzte Ketten, Kettenritzel, Bremsbeläge, Bremsscheiben, Kugellager oder Reifen. Das sind alles Teile, die ich als Verschleißteile betrachte und regelmäßig austausche.
Aber ich rege mich darüber auf, plötzlich mit einem "Bananen-Sattel" oder einer gebrochenen Federung konfrontiert zu sein.

Mein Krad ist 23 Monate alt. Ich räume ein, viel gefahren zu sein. Es gibt wohl nicht viele Kräder mit einer derart hohen Laufleistung in der EU.
Trotzdem: das Federbein muß doch wohl länger als 60.000 km halten, oder?!

In meinem Fall haben Yamaha Norwegen und Yamaha Europa geholfen, indem sie meinen Krad als Garantieleistung - also für mich kostenlos - reparierten.
Ich bin für deren Bemühungen, die Ersatzteile innerhalb von zwei Wochen besorgt und das Krad schnell wieder repariert zu haben, sehr dankbar.
Jedenfalls hoffe ich, daß der beschriebene Defekt bei anderen XT 660 R nicht auftreten wird. Ich persönlich bin froh, daß der Defekt bei mir nicht zum Unfall führte.

Netzverbindung ;-) zu Lichtbildern, die ich am Tag nach dem Defekt aufgenommen habe:

http://swede.smugmug.com/gallery/1787685

Grüße

Johan

Mitglied Nr. 7
http://WWW.XT6.NL
******************
Bild
(XT-Durchschnitts-Verbrauch auf gut 29.000 km)

Johan (SWE)

#3 Beitrag von Johan (SWE) » 19. Aug 2006 02:24

Popans,

Vielen dank!

Gruss,

Johan

maxk

#4 Beitrag von maxk » 19. Aug 2006 05:00

Hello Johan,

what kind of tyres do you have on your bike?
And are you contently?
Can you tell us your experience with the Pirelli???

Thank you

Max

Johan (SWE)

#5 Beitrag von Johan (SWE) » 19. Aug 2006 10:35

Hi Maxk,

I have worn out many tires over the last 60.000 kilometers. Metzeler Tourance (1 front, 2 rear) , Pirelli Scorpion S/T 90 (1 front, 2 rear), and Continental TKC 80 (1 front, 1 rear).

This is possible, since there are no restrictions to change tires in the Netherlands. I know that changing tires without ABE will possibly cause you problems in Germany.

The Metzeler Tourance is a known tire. It handles well under all circumstances. I can recommend this type to anyone who is riding a lot on asphalt, but less on sand/grind roads.

The Pirelli Scorpion 90 S/T is a wonderful allround tire for both asphalt as well as sand/grind roads. This is the tire I have personally chosen due to its superb character and handling.

The Continental TKC 80 is the tire I used during my vacation in NW Italy. When you will mainly ride your XT on sand/grind roads, this is the tire I would personally recommend. However, since the TKC 80 is also DOT approved, you can also ride distances over asphalt roads legally. The rubber is of course very soft, which you have to keep in mind when you ride on curvy asphalt roads. When you ride on sand/grind roads, the Conti tire is providing a great grip!

The next time I need to change tires, I will consider the American KENDA brand. I am really curious how KENDA 761 handles on asphalt. The KENDA 760 Track Master II (DOT approved) is already know in the enduro community, and loved by many drivers. The reason behind my interest is the price/value ratio, KENDA is cheaper than most larger brands like Metzeler or Pirelli. I am curious how KENDA tires will perform, and I will certainly share my experiences when the time is right.

Although I have experienced the known 'stop and go' problem (ECU), the known saddle problem, and broken rear suspension, I am generally very satisfied with the XT 660 R. My motorcycle is equipped with a Dynojet Powercommander, 14 - 47 sprockets with X-ring chain, in addition to many Touratech accessories. In the current situation, the engine consumes less than one deciliter Shell Advance 10W-40 oil per 1000 kilometers, which is great for a one cylinder engine!

Regards,

Johan

TROLL

#6 Beitrag von TROLL » 19. Aug 2006 12:01

Hello Johan,
thank you for telling us about your problem - I had a look at your photos - that looks really scaring. I think you had a lot of luck - apparently you did not fall off the bike in a ticklish situation.
To make shure that we all understand what part of the rear shock broke I just made a photo of my rear shock. I guess the "peg" is the little knob in the red circle on the photo below...

Bild

By the way - I passed through Molde on the 8th of July this year (coming from Geiranger, heading north) - riding my XT660R. So we almost met each other there. Molde is the place with the cool tunnel passing through a fjord, isn't it?

Well good to hear, that you're back on the road and that Yamaha fixed the rear shock - shame on the poor quality :evil: . It's the kind of thing that can always happen - but it simply must not happen..

Take care! :P

Troll

Johan (SWE)

#7 Beitrag von Johan (SWE) » 19. Aug 2006 14:41

Hi Troll,

With respect to my contribution to the forum, you are most welcome! As a member of the Dutch XT6 organization, a 'sister organization' if you wish, I gladely share both the joys and pains of owning a Yamaha XT 660 R with my brothers and sisters in other countries.

Just to confirm, the 'peg' I talked about is indeed the little knob in the red circle in the foto you submitted.

Located adjacent and under the 'peg', you can see the preload adjustment ring. Your submitted foto displays that the preload adjustment ring has been set to position 2, which is the standard setting.

I am obviousely not a shock absorber expert, but as far as I can understand from the construction and design, the preload adjustment ring holds the spring in position under a level of tension. If the ring is slipping upwards due to material failure (i.e. the pegs break off), the tension of the spring will cause it to extend upward as far as it can go. If this happens, you will obviousely not have any shock absorbing functionality whatsoever.

The shock absorber itself is maintenance free. But, from what I have read in the Service Manual, the instructions suggests that only the moving parts of the assembly have been indicated as points that needs maintenance by applying lubrication. Using the weblink below, you can find a schematic illustration showing the points that needs lubrication. These points are indicated with LS, which is an abbrevation for Lithium-Soap-Based-Grease.

http://swede.smugmug.com/gallery/1787685/1/89145524

My motorcycle has been serviced by authorized Yamaha Dealers in the Netherlands and in Sweden according to the documented service intervals in the Owner's Manual. The last service was performed in Sweden on Friday, July 29th, just before I headed further North to Norway. 2000 kilometers later the rear shock absorber broke down on Tuesday, August 1st, when I drove on Highway 64 in the area of Isfjord South of Molde.
The tunnel you mentioned is indeed a part of Highway 64 between Molde en Andalsnes, it is leading you underneath the Moldefjorden.

Finally, I must say that I have no evidence to state that there is a general problem with the shock absorber of the XT 660 R. This might be an isolated incident of material failure, but I still urge other XT 660 R owners to keep an eye on the rear shock absorber assembly.

Kind regards,

Johan

Johan (SWE)

#8 Beitrag von Johan (SWE) » 19. Aug 2006 14:48

Hi again,

By the way, if someone can be so kind and translate my latest post in German, please go ahead and do so. It is imperative that the message is passed on to the German speaking community of XT 660 R owners.

From my personal point of view, this was a very, very, serious incident.
Therefore, I urge all XT 660 R owners to look for signs of material failure in the rear shock absorber assembly.

Regards.

Johan

popans
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#9 Beitrag von popans » 19. Aug 2006 17:47

Hello at all!

The construction of the rear suspension seems not to be really stabile, I think. It looks as if the suspension is only hold by two small pegs.

What about the Wilbers-Suspension? Does anybody know, if it uses those pegs, too? Or is it more stabile?

Und nun die Frage nochmal auf Deutsch ;-) : Weiß jemand, ob beim Austausch des Original-Federbeines gegen eines von Wilbers die Haltezapfen ebenfalls benutzt werden, oder ist die Wilbers-Konstruktion robuster?

Regards
Gruß
******************
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(XT-Durchschnitts-Verbrauch auf gut 29.000 km)

Johan (SWE)

#10 Beitrag von Johan (SWE) » 20. Aug 2006 15:12

Popans,

I checked the Wilbers german site. It appears that the design of their shock absorber is completely different. There are no pegs in this design, only a ring that holds the spring in the appropriate position.

According to the online reference chart, either the 640-732-00 (429 euro)or 641-732-00 (649 euro), can be fitted on the Yamaha XT 660 R, DM 01.
The shock absorbers are issued with german ABE, no problems there!

http://www.wilbers-products.net/shop/d_ ... R76975.htm

Regards,

Johan

popans
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#11 Beitrag von popans » 22. Aug 2006 00:04

Hello Johan!

Thank you for researching the information you displayed. I was considering of buying a Wilbers rear suspension before you reported your problem to the community because the original rear suspension does not absorb the way I want it to do.
Your report confirms me in my intention to replace the suspension.

Regards
******************
Bild
(XT-Durchschnitts-Verbrauch auf gut 29.000 km)

Johan (SWE)

#12 Beitrag von Johan (SWE) » 22. Aug 2006 16:37

Hi Popans,

I think that the rear suspension is alright for average use. However, for those of us who demand more from the bike, replacing the standard supension with either Wilbers, WP, or Ohlins might improve handling a lot.

Personally, I would either choose Wilbers or Ohlins and replace both front and rear suspension at the same time!

Wilbers:

XT 660 R (Enduro) Artikel Nr. 600-048-02 (Front springs)

XT 660 X/R Artikel Nr. 640-732-00 (Rear Shock Type 640 Road Ø 46 mm, in either black or blue color)

Delivered with 'TÜV. ABE und eine lebenslange Garantie'!

If I won the State Lottery, I would certainly opt for the Ohlins, the Rolls Royce of all suspension!

Ohlins:

Article 08709-50, Type FORK SP, 630mm, for Yamaha XT 660 R(2004-2005)

Article YA 418, Type 46DR, 341mm, 68,5mm, for Yamaha XT 660 R(2004-2005), Yamaha XT 660 X(2004-2005)

Note: WP does not manufacture suspension for the XT 660 R, at least the website does not mention anything about this.

I hope that you can use this information for shopping more accurately!

-:)

Regards,

Johan

Johan (SWE)

#13 Beitrag von Johan (SWE) » 24. Aug 2006 23:09

Popans,

I have checked with some of my friends that have been involved with enduro and motorcross for a couple of decades.

It seems that the design of other brands are completely different from the shock absorber on the XT 660 R.

Many brands uses a two-ring system. According to my sources, one ring is used as a preload adjustment ring. The second ring is a safety ring which holds the first preload adjustment ring in place.

I suspect that the Wilbers suspension uses this design, but I have not researched the instruction manual yet. From the illustrations I have seen, my interpretation is that the preload adjustment ring can be used for leveling the bike when a heavy load is present. The other possibility is to use the little knob at the other end of the shock absorber (wtih 22 positions), which allows you to adjust the oil flow back to the cylinder.

Regards,

Johan

popans
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#14 Beitrag von popans » 2. Sep 2006 14:05

By the way: Did you report the failure to a motorcycle magazine? Maybe someone ist interestet in this problem and Yamaha would have to report if there is a genarally problem with the suspension...

Regards
******************
Bild
(XT-Durchschnitts-Verbrauch auf gut 29.000 km)

Johan (SWE)

#15 Beitrag von Johan (SWE) » 2. Sep 2006 14:55

Popans,

Based upon my experiences from the past, I am personally not convinced that Yamaha will even react on any information they recieve.

Fact is that I sent a letter in May to Raymond Coolen (Test & Service Manager, Yamaha Europe) with a formal complaint about the deformed saddle, with three A4 sized pictures, along with a demand to have it replaced since no Dutch Yamaha Dealers wanted to help me. I also sent a CC to the Dutch 'Consumentenbond', the 'Dutch Consumers Association', as well in order to inform them about the fault.

To this point, I have not recieved anything back from Yamaha. With a potentially more serious problem than the deformed saddle at stake, that being a shock absorber that might fail, the time is perhaps ripe to approach the journalists at leading European motorcycle magazines?

I don't know about your thoughts on this issue, but if we approach the press as two organizations (XT-660.de, XT6.nl), we might add some weight since we represent a large group of owners.

For whatever I care this problem might occur worldwide in local markets where the XT 660 R is sold if there is a structural problem with the shock absorber. I also understood that the German authorities have purchased a large batch of XT's to be used in professional service, which puts German employees in service with relevant authorities at danger.

What are your thoughts on this issue?

Does anyone of the members of xt-660.de know journalists from Motorrad or other magazines?

Regards,

Johan

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