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Swingarm preload question, unusual gap between frame

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I am reassembling from a full tear down and have run into a little confusion. When I went to reinstall my swingarm I found that I have way more free play then I remember when disassembling. From what I remember and my pictures confirm is that both outside dust covers of the swing arm were sandwiched against the frame. On the right side there was no sign of the preload bolt pushing against the swingarm.

However now I have a solid 1/8-1/4" gap that I can only fill by cranking down the preload bolt! This doesn't seem right to me, I checked on a friends bike to confirm the dust cap is right against the frame! Where did I go wrong? How could I have gained this extra room it is as if I am missing a shim or my swingarm shrunk.

Strange problem I know hopefully I am missing something simple. Here is a couple pictures to help explain.

This is the right side (preload side) before I took the swingarm apart.

img_1210.jpg

Here it is after reassembly. I know I have all the bearings, pivot collars and dust caps installed. There is nothing else that goes between the frame, swingarm and engine to take up my mystery room. Question Question

img_1211.jpg

Thanks for any input you guys might have!

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Well I was looking at my Honda Shop Manual and all I see is the swing arm pivot bolt & nut and two dust seal cap's. The swing arm pivot nut get's torque at 90 n.m or 9.0 kg-m or 65 ft-lbs , depending on what torque wrench you got. Doe's that gap draw in any when you tighten the nut down.? There is no washer's or spacer's in the view that they show. Hope this help's !! :)

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Well the thing is the preload bolt/nut get torqued before the pivot bolt/nut. I am completely dumbfounded as to where my extra play came from. I've heard some people complain that they have a hard time squeezing the swingarm back inside the frame, never having too much room.

By the way the left side is great, nice and tight between the frame and the engine.

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help me out here, what "preload nut" are you refering to when you say that has to be torqued before you install the swingarm??

also thinking 2 dust seals on each side of swingarm, you sure you didnt lose anything parts wise???

microfiche does show dust seals on the insides where your showing the gap, must be those

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The preload bolt is the smaller 4-prong insert that goes from the right side of the bike which squashes down on the swingarm, it's not installed before the swingarm but it is the first thing to get torqued down (followed by the preload nut, then the pivot shaft is removed, installed from the right side and torqued down)

The dust caps are only on the outside of the swingarm which I have installed. The insides have dust seals which are small and concealed inside the swingarm.

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Everything looks great other than that gap but that is what those preload bolts are for.

The preload bolts were either moved while sitting or the frame has relaxed and caused the gap you see there.

How long did your bike sit with the swingarm out?

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It was just a day or two. I have two frames and have checked both and they have about the same clearance. I haven't heard of the frame relaxing, anyway to get her back in line? Cranking the pivot bolt down without the preload set? I'm stumped I have taken it apart multiple times, tried it in two frames, checked multiple manuals and parts fiches and nothing has changed. Am I losing my mind?

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I have to agree with Honda Dan, I think once you tourque it down the gap will disapear and all will be good in the XRR world. Aluminum is a fairly soft metal and has a lot of give to it before it fractures/fails. :banghead::)

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I should add the engine was removed as well, if that makes a difference.

Well the thing is you are supposed to tighten down the preload bolt (the small 4 holed bolt) You torque this down first to 12 nm, back it off and torque it to 7 nm. The thing is when I torque the bolt down to 12nm it goes all the way inside the frame until it fills the 'gap' and presses down on the swingarm. The nut can be seen in my second picture with 3-4 threads exposed, unlike the first picture.

So if I torque this down, torque down the lock nut and then crank down on the main swingarm bolt it's not going to compress the frame and fill that gap, the preload bolt would have to back out of the threads for that to happen.

Hope I am making sense maybe you gotta see it to understand it. Thanks for the input guys I am willing to try anything at this point.

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The purpose of the preload bolt is to take up the gap between the frame and swing arm before torquing the pivot shaft (80 ft lbs). With the aluminum frame, Honda wants to limit unwanted side load induced by cranking down on the pivot shaft.

Don't have an answer for your gap. Sounds like you are doing the procedure right but if you are doing it wrong it could make for a larger gap.

Put the shaft in from left side to get everything concentric. The idea is to run the preload bolt into the frame until it contacts the dust cap and give it some load (9 ft lbs). Back it off and give a light load (5 ft lbs) and while holding it tighten the preload nut (book says 47 ft lbs). Pull the shaft from the left side and put in from right side and torque the shaft nut (80 ft lbs).

If you were trying to torque the preload bolt to a great amount it would make the gap bigger than intended. Good luck.

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The purpose of the preload bolt is to take up the gap between the frame and swing arm before torquing the pivot shaft (80 ft lbs). With the aluminum frame, Honda wants to limit unwanted side load induced by cranking down on the pivot shaft.

Don't have an answer for your gap. Sounds like you are doing the procedure right but if you are doing it wrong it could make for a larger gap.

Put the shaft in from left side to get everything concentric. The idea is to run the preload bolt into the frame until it contacts the dust cap and give it some load (9 ft lbs). Back it off and give a light load (5 ft lbs) and while holding it tighten the preload nut (book says 47 ft lbs). Pull the shaft from the left side and put in from right side and torque the shaft nut (80 ft lbs).

If you were trying to torque the preload bolt to a great amount it would make the gap bigger than intended. Good luck.

Yep that is the exact procedure I am following. Just not sure why I have such a large gap! I am about to just run it, I don't know what else to do.

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If it were me, and I was sure I had everything in like you are, I would just set it up like you know how and then run it. All the datums are set up on the left side so if you do have all the parts in then the sprocket and wheel should be where they are supposed to be relative to the rest of the chassis. The gap won't hurt the swingarm bearings because they are still protected by the dust cap. Take it for a ride and if it acts funny then fall back and regroup. If not then relax and enjoy it.

What I would not do is crank down on the pivot shaft without the preload bolt adjusted correctly in an attempt to eliminate the gap. Maybe wouldn't hurt anything but it's not what the engineers intended. To each their own.

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If it were me, and I was sure I had everything in like you are, I would just set it up like you know how and then run it. All the datums are set up on the left side so if you do have all the parts in then the sprocket and wheel should be where they are supposed to be relative to the rest of the chassis. The gap won't hurt the swingarm bearings because they are still protected by the dust cap. Take it for a ride and if it acts funny then fall back and regroup. If not then relax and enjoy it.

What I would not do is crank down on the pivot shaft without the preload bolt adjusted correctly in an attempt to eliminate the gap. Maybe wouldn't hurt anything but it's not what the engineers intended. To each their own.

Thanks Pearl, that is what I plan to do glad to hear someone else would take the same route. I will just keep an eye on it, take it back apart and recheck all my torques after a ride. I'm a pretty seasoned mechanic however this is my first time crankin on the XRR though. Everything else has been flawless with this bike I love the design and how easy everything goes together.

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okaaa...rather than start'n a new thread i found this one...

...after finnish'n a ride yesterday my bud ask me to look at his R...i'm the designated R mechanic around hear...yeah i know it skeery :ride:

on his 01 XR650R his swingarm has sum side to side play that we have never noticed before...

...is the problem/solution the swingarm preload bearing???

...has it most likely been out of adjustment this whole time or do the go out of adjustment due to wear???

he's gunna luv the idea of buying a special tool...he's a cheap bastard! :worthy:

TIA

:thumbsup:

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he's gunna luv the idea of buying a special tool...he's a cheap bastard! :worthy:

:thumbsup:

Birds of a feather......:ride: Just kiddin' Kenny Poo. If you're the designated R mechanic, go to the hardware store and get some cheap Taiwanese sockets and make your own special tools. A little measuring and some die grinder work and your buddy will have some good swing arm tools for pennies on the dollar. If you need instructions, the Pig Pen outlines it pretty well I think.

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If it were me, and I was sure I had everything in like you are, I would just set it up like you know how and then run it. All the datums are set up on the left side so if you do have all the parts in then the sprocket and wheel should be where they are supposed to be relative to the rest of the chassis. The gap won't hurt the swingarm bearings because they are still protected by the dust cap. Take it for a ride and if it acts funny then fall back and regroup. If not then relax and enjoy it.

What I would not do is crank down on the pivot shaft without the preload bolt adjusted correctly in an attempt to eliminate the gap. Maybe wouldn't hurt anything but it's not what the engineers intended. To each their own.

Good advice. The frame members most affected by tension on the swing arm bolt are made of cast aluminum and won't tolerate excessive force put on them especially when you throw vibration into the mix (exactly why there's a swing arm preload fitting).

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Birds of a feather......:ride: Just kiddin' Kenny Poo. If you're the designated R mechanic, go to the hardware store and get some cheap Taiwanese sockets and make your own special tools. A little measuring and some die grinder work and your buddy will have some good swing arm tools for pennies on the dollar. If you need instructions, the Pig Pen outlines it pretty well I think.

yeah i told him about grinding sum sockets...but i'm gunna tell him about the $80 tool first...he'll crap himself and throw a hissy :thumbsup:

Good advice. The frame members most affected by tension on the swing arm bolt are made of cast aluminum and won't tolerate excessive force put on them especially when you throw vibration into the mix (exactly why there's a swing arm preload fitting).

i don't think the bolt is aluminum(if i remember correctly) but rather u don't want to crank down on the aluminum frame hence the preload bearing :ride:

i just wonder if it been outta adjustment all of this time but i did drop the swingarm to change the spring and lubed everything up while it wus apart a few months back. :banana:

:worthy:

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i don't think the bolt is aluminum(if i remember correctly) but rather u don't want to crank down on the aluminum frame hence the preload bearing :worthy:

Yeah, the bolt is steel. I was refering to the frame members being cast aluminum. :thumbsup:

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