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  1. #1
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    Default What does the cotter pin on the rear axle do?

    It doesn't stop from the nut coming loose. One would need a Castellated(Castle) nut for that.

    Does it stop the the axle from sliding out?

    Does it stop from losing the nut as well?

    I would have thought if the nut came loose one would notice when riding? Does anyone have any experience here?

    Eckhard

  2. #2
    Server Admin AnthonyG's Avatar
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    As you are technically correct, a castle nut will stop the nut from loosing to much from the torque spec.

    But the cotter pin will still stop a nut from loosing past the pin regardless, as it may go past the torque spec, the pin is still going to stop it.

    Id image after a long long long period of time, the pin will probably wear away enough for it to snap/disintegrate for the nut to completely fall off & thus the axle possibly coming out.

  3. #3
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    Does it stop the axle from sliding out?
    Yes
    Does it stop from losing the nut as well?
    Yes
    I would have thought if the nut came loose one would notice when riding? Does anyone have any experience here?
    I wouldn't bet on it. Been riding and wrenching for a lot of years and nothing I see or hear will surprise me anymore. You would think two people riding a fully loaded Goldwing would know they only have 15 lbs. of pressure in their tires, BUT THEY DON'T. You would think some riders would know the brake pads are shot and have been cutting into the discs for the last thousand miles or more, BUT THEY DON'T. I could go on for an hour. Personally I would like to see the castle nut set up, but I will take what we have. It only works if you keep a pin in though. I have seen many bikes where it was just left out.

  4. #4
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    I must have been lucky... I removed it when I put my hitch on and would leave it off when the hitch was off for over 4 years and never noticed a difference.

  5. #5
    SpyderLovers Sponsor BajaRon's Avatar
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    The cotter pin is pretty much a CYA to prevent disaster if the axle nut should come lose. Properly installed there is no need for the cotter pin.
    Only SLOW people have to leave on time...





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    Server Admin AnthonyG's Avatar
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    Axle's without cotter pins is a big fat NO for me.

  7. #7
    Very Active Member Bob Denman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BajaRon View Post
    The cotter pin is pretty much a CYA to prevent disaster if the axle nut should come lose. Properly installed there is no need for the cotter pin.

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    Just about every nut on an aircraft has a wire twist lock on it so things don't go bad at 100 MPH at 10,000 ft. A cotter pin in an axle nut serves the same function so nothing goes bad at 60 MPH at 4 ft. If things were to go bad in either situation the results could be the same.

  9. #9
    SpyderLovers Sponsor BajaRon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AnthonyG View Post
    Axle's without cotter pins is a big fat NO for me.
    Quote Originally Posted by 2dogs View Post
    Just about every nut on an aircraft has a wire twist lock on it so things don't go bad at 100 MPH at 10,000 ft. A cotter pin in an axle nut serves the same function so nothing goes bad at 60 MPH at 4 ft. If things were to go bad in either situation the results could be the same.
    I do not advocate NOT using the cotter pin. Just saying that it would have to be be a pretty negligent install to ever actually need the cotter pin. The pin is a fail safe for an un-tightened axle nut than for anything else. I put mine back in and I did the work myself.
    Last edited by BajaRon; 12-30-2018 at 05:25 PM.
    Only SLOW people have to leave on time...





  10. #10
    Very Active Member Sarge707's Avatar
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    My 2015 F3 does Not use a Cotter pin.
    2015 F3 sm6, Custom Dynamics fender lights.

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    Very Active Member canamjhb's Avatar
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    No axle cotter pin on mine. I have a hitch and the hitch bolt has a cotter pin. I don't think the hitch would fit if there were a cotter pin in the axle.
    Platinum Silver Satin 2014 RTL, Driver Backrest. Baha Ron Bar, Elka Shocks, Hiway pegs, Lighted Bump Skid, Centramatic Wheel Balancers, Wide Vu Mirrors, Third Tail/Brake light, Missing Belt Guard, Federal Formoza front and General Altimax rear tires, Squared Away, Mirror turn signals, Vibration Damper, Magnetic Mirrors, Matching RT622 Trailer.....Semper Fi....

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  12. #12
    Very Active Member PMK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2dogs View Post
    Just about every nut on an aircraft has a wire twist lock on it so things don't go bad at 100 MPH at 10,000 ft. A cotter pin in an axle nut serves the same function so nothing goes bad at 60 MPH at 4 ft. If things were to go bad in either situation the results could be the same.
    Sorry, but that is not correct. In aviation / aerospace many fasteners are simply locknuts with no safety at all. However on modern aircraft, flight controls have double safeties, such as self locking castle nuts that are cotter keyed.

    As for safety wire, yes, still used, but not often on newer aircraft, plus with the new style cable safty setup, that is becoming more common.

  13. #13
    Very Active Member canamjhb's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=PMK;1411048]Sorry, but that is not correct. In aviation / aerospace many fasteners are simply locknuts with no safety at all.

    That has been my experience when I was involved in building aircraft. (737s and 747s) But that was more than a few years ago..... I understand that today they use more composites and glues..... Jim
    Platinum Silver Satin 2014 RTL, Driver Backrest. Baha Ron Bar, Elka Shocks, Hiway pegs, Lighted Bump Skid, Centramatic Wheel Balancers, Wide Vu Mirrors, Third Tail/Brake light, Missing Belt Guard, Federal Formoza front and General Altimax rear tires, Squared Away, Mirror turn signals, Vibration Damper, Magnetic Mirrors, Matching RT622 Trailer.....Semper Fi....

    .]

  14. #14
    Very Active Member PW2013STL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by canamjhb View Post
    No axle cotter pin on mine. I have a hitch and the hitch bolt has a cotter pin. I don't think the hitch would fit if there were a cotter pin in the axle.
    True, but the hitch also captures the axel nut so it cannot come off. The cotter pin on the hitch bolt prevents the hitch bolt from sliding out.
    2015 F3S, 2018 F3L

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  15. #15
    Very Active Member PW2013STL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sarge707 View Post
    My 2015 F3 does Not use a Cotter pin.
    My 2015 F3 does.
    2015 F3S, 2018 F3L

    Isn't it weird that in AMERICA our flag and our culture offend so many people......
    but our benefits don't?

  16. #16
    Very Active Member PMK's Avatar
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    I ditched the cotter pin, now use a safety pin. No tools needed.

    As for why they use a cotter pin and no castle nut. Maybe there is some regulation regarding it must be saftied to prevent the axle from coming out. Granted it may loosen in theory, but could never fall out.

    Yes, people are sometimes dumb and oblivious to what goes on around them. It happens.

  17. #17
    Very Active Member IdahoMtnSpyder's Avatar
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    Not the same application but same principle, but I drilled a hole and use a cotter pin on the stud of my hitch ball. I decided I better do that after I found the hitch ball nut had worked loose and was close to coming off. That was while I was pulling my trailer on the Interstate!

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  18. #18
    Very Active Member Chupaca's Avatar
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    Default Your choice....

    It does what it was designed to do. But, I would not want to be the guy who did not put it in and an accident occurs that it would have prevented....
    Gene and Ilana De Laney
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    ​2012 RS sm5

  19. #19
    Active Member Joel The Biker's Avatar
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    The reason they do not use a castle nut is for simplified engineering. If they used a castle nut, it would be so tall that the BRP hitch would not fit and you would not be able to install the cotter pin in the BRP hitch. BRP wants to sell you the hitch and hopefully an overpriced trailer, and keep the design simple. A low profile axle nut makes the design and installation of the hitch much easier and simplified. It does this and is still able to provide a safety factor to prevent the rear axle from falling out if the nut comes loose.
    KEYLESS REMOTE LOCKS AND FRUNK, HEADS-UP DISPLAY, RADAR DETECTOR, CUSTOM TAILLIGHTS, 2 BROS EXHAUST, SWAYBAR, PAINTED REAR, PAINTED DASH, SHORTY TINTED SCREEN, RIVCO FRONT BUMPER, CUSTOM REAR LUGGAGE RACK, DASH CAM, ANDROID GPS, COMFORT SEAT, 595EVO TIRES, LED HEADLIGHTS, PAINTED MIRRORS, LED REFLECTORS, MUCH MORE.

  20. #20
    Very Active Member PMK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joel The Biker View Post
    The reason they do not use a castle nut is for simplified engineering. If they used a castle nut, it would be so tall that the BRP hitch would not fit and you would not be able to install the cotter pin in the BRP hitch. BRP wants to sell you the hitch and hopefully an overpriced trailer, and keep the design simple. A low profile axle nut makes the design and installation of the hitch much easier and simplified. It does this and is still able to provide a safety factor to prevent the rear axle from falling out if the nut comes loose.
    Maybe, but more likely they use a plain nut to save time and cost. Castle nuts cost more to purchase. Add in tnat during assembly, they simply tighten the axle to specs then slip in the cotter key. No alignment of the nut to the axles drilled hole. Simple, fast and low cost.

    If the plain nut was installed to facilitate a hitch as the primary reason behind using the plain nut, most likely Can Am would supply the nut in the hitch kit. Besides, when the hitch is installed, you can no longer safety the axle as you do without the hitch. The long hitch bolt passes through the axles length, that bolt does have a castle nut and is saftied.

  21. #21
    Very Active Member Bob Denman's Avatar
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    Regardless of their reasoning: having it doesn't hurt anything, and it might just help an awful lot (If things go sideways!)

  22. #22
    Active Member Joel The Biker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PMK View Post
    Maybe, but more likely they use a plain nut to save time and cost.

    If the plain nut was installed to facilitate a hitch as the primary reason behind using the plain nut, most likely Can Am would supply the nut in the hitch kit.
    Like I said. For simplified engineering. I disagree with your second statement about them supplying a plain nut with the hitch kit. That would mean they would have to keep 3 different nuts on hand. A castle nut for the axle, castle nut for the hitch, and plain nut for the axle when hitch installed. Plus it would mean nut removal, nut installation, re-torquing, and setting belt tension everytime the hitch is installed or removed. Simplicity is the key.
    KEYLESS REMOTE LOCKS AND FRUNK, HEADS-UP DISPLAY, RADAR DETECTOR, CUSTOM TAILLIGHTS, 2 BROS EXHAUST, SWAYBAR, PAINTED REAR, PAINTED DASH, SHORTY TINTED SCREEN, RIVCO FRONT BUMPER, CUSTOM REAR LUGGAGE RACK, DASH CAM, ANDROID GPS, COMFORT SEAT, 595EVO TIRES, LED HEADLIGHTS, PAINTED MIRRORS, LED REFLECTORS, MUCH MORE.

  23. #23
    Very Active Member PMK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joel The Biker View Post
    Like I said. For simplified engineering. I disagree with your second statement about them supplying a plain nut with the hitch kit. That would mean they would have to keep 3 different nuts on hand. A castle nut for the axle, castle nut for the hitch, and plain nut for the axle when hitch installed. Plus it would mean nut removal, nut installation, re-torquing, and setting belt tension everytime the hitch is installed or removed. Simplicity is the key.
    You are the genius in these matters. Therefore whatever you say regarding your nuts I will abide by.

  24. #24
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    Thanks for the input guys. My final thoughts on the matter are

    This is the first time I have seen the use of a cotter pin with a plain nut. Usually I see a castle nut or a washer that bears against the cotterpin in a relatively loose assembly..

    It seems to me that the cotter pin is there only to prevent the loss of the components and not assure the security of the assembly.

    I will continue to use the cotter pin or replace it with a hairpin type clip which is reusable because that is what Can Am intended and because Can Am parts are not cheap or readily available, i.e lost nut. Cotter pins though are cheap and readily available.

    Happy New Year All!!

    Eckhard

  25. #25
    SpyderLovers Sponsor cptjam's Avatar
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    We regularly check the belt when doing an alignment. We have found 18’s with no cotter pin. As a result, we put a new one in. Cheap insurance and piece of mind. Any Home Depot has them. Ride safe!
    Joe Meyer



    Dealer for the Outlaw/ROLO laser Alignment system

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