Alternator Noise-Not whine


Information and questions on GL1500 Goldwings (1988-2000)
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Ericson38
Posts: 64
Joined: Mon Sep 21, 2009 7:39 pm
Location: Nokesville, Va
Motorcycle: 1983 GL 1100 Standard, 2000 GL1500 SE

Alternator Noise-Not whine

Postby Ericson38 » Tue Apr 10, 2012 12:52 pm



Just having a great time with the 70K mile GL1500 SE 2000 year model. Need to get that in my signature. Purchased last week.

Not in neutral (only when driving) I have a left front noise from 1800-2500 rpm I can hear through the helmet. By the time in fifth gear, its still there but hard to hear at speed. It is a warble sound, and I thought it was exhaust touching something, but can't see any chance of that. Kind of a beat frequency in and out light buzz sound, but totally gone my 3000 rpm, replaced with pure turbine engine sound (Honda Formula 1 sound ?).

Decided it must be the original alternator bearing and rubber dampers. I could actually hear it on the center stand in nuetral, with a stethescope, on the alternator case, but not at the engine case just in front of it (alt drive assy). Would only occur if increasing the RPM (the warble), with the scope, while in neutral. But same noise signature as I can hear riding.

Pulled alternator last night. Rear bearing a little loose (70K miles), but not bad or rough, and not turning in the alt rear cover. Pulled rear bearing and ordered new one (press fit on shaft and tight slip fit in rear cover of alt). Also ordered new rubber dampers. Will let everyone know if this fixes the only problem it has right now.

It is a great bike, I miss riding it already!



User avatar
Ericson38
Posts: 64
Joined: Mon Sep 21, 2009 7:39 pm
Location: Nokesville, Va
Motorcycle: 1983 GL 1100 Standard, 2000 GL1500 SE

Re: Alternator Noise-Not whine

Postby Ericson38 » Fri Apr 13, 2012 8:15 pm

Just changed the four dampers, the rear bearing, and the outer large sealing O-ring. It is certainly quiter, the noise I had between 1500-2500 rpm is ALMOST gone, not quite, but close enough to call it quits. My rear bearing was not turning in the housing yet (70,000 k miles), and there was plenty of brush length left. The four original rubber dampers were as hard as a telephone handset (bakelite), and the new ones were surprisingly pliable, so I would say the heat does take a toll on them. Also changed to Sylvania Ultra Star 9003 SU headlight bulbs. These make a bigger difference than the one I changed out in the '83 Standard, must be a combination of the 2 versus 1 bulb factor and the reflection geometry being a bit more elaborate in the 1500.


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