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  1. #1
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    Default Front Sprocket Spline Failures

    In view of the failures of front pullies was just thinking. Who has pulled their pulley and either put spline grease or locktite to stave off future failures and what did you use? And who suffered a failure because of a dry spline?

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    Very Active Member PMK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by toolie View Post
    In view of the failures of front pullies was just thinking. Who has pulled their pulley and either put spline grease or locktite to stave off future failures and what did you use? And who suffered a failure because of a dry spline?
    Months ago, I removed the front pulley from our 2014 RTS. From the original build, the splines were lubricated. Washed the pulley and output shaft, inspected and found no wear. This was done prior to Can Am having a recommended lubricant in the TSB. I utilized a different product, but publicly will recommend that owners follow the service instructions recommended lubricant.

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    Where do we get a copy of the TSB?
    Eckhard

    Spyder RT Ltd, 2011

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    PMK are you saying that your splines were lubricated from the factory?

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    I just serviced my 2014 RTS and I checked the splines and they also appear to be lubed...

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    Active Member h0gr1der's Avatar
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    I got the new 2019 service manual for the RT, there's a lot more info in there than previous versions.. The front sprocket is listed a greased with Kluberpaste 46 MR 401. It's expensive as all get out for grease, but maybe it works miracles.

    MSDS suggests its composition as: Chemical characterization (preparation): Polyalkylene glycol oil, lithium soap, solid lubricants (e.g. phosphates)
    h0gr1der
    2018 RT Limited Blue/Chrome SE6 *Tri-Axis Bars*Adjustable Driver Backrest*175/55R15 Vredestein Front, 205/60R15 Vredestein Rear Tires*Baja Ron Front Spring Pre-Load Adjusters*Roadster Renovations Vibration Damper*Misty Mountain Sheepskin seat cover*Centramatic balancers *Garmin Zumo 595LM GPS*KOTT Grills*BajaRon swaybar*SpyderPops Alignment*Missing Belt guard
    States Visited on Less than 4 wheels.

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    Very Active Member BLUEKNIGHT911's Avatar
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    Default " Red Dust" spline issue

    I find this issue interesting . to the best of my knowledge this was never a problem with the RT . Why is it an issue with the F-3 ???? .. Could this be similar to the DESS Fiasco .. Not a problem until some engineer decided it needed Fixing . NOW there is a problem Is this a Canadian thing ????? ....good luck . Mike

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    Quote Originally Posted by BLUEKNIGHT911 View Post
    I find this issue interesting …. to the best of my knowledge … this was never a problem with the RT …. Why is it an issue with the F-3 ???? ….. Could this be similar to the DESS Fiasco ….. Not a problem until some engineer decided it needed Fixing …. NOW there is a problem … Is this a Canadian thing ????? ………...….good luck …. Mike
    Does that mean what it sounds like, ThatRTL SE5 just don't have the problem. Except for some normal wear an tear.
    Can Am 2013 RTL SE5

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    Very Active Member BLUEKNIGHT911's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wingit3611 View Post
    Does that mean what it sounds like, ThatRTL SE5 just don't have the problem. Except for some normal wear an tear.
    From what I have read about this …. RT - RTs - RTL do not have the Red Dust issue ……. Mike

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    I'm reading this thread and looking at the links, I'm mystified by the responses, the red dust is rust, the splines aren't wearing out, they're rusting out! For rust to form, water must be penetrating the splines therefore there must be space at the bolt/washer and/or space at the rear pulley flange.
    Filling the spline clearance with moly grease is a good idea, filling it with a water resistant grease might be a better idea.

    Ideally, in use there should be no movement between the splined shaft and the pulley so molybdenum to prevent wear shouldn't be necessary.

    The fix is to catch it before it starts and be sure the washer is good, there's no bruising on the pulley faces, plenty of water resistant grease to fill the splines and washer face to keep out the water, locktite on the thread and the bolt tightened properly so there is no movement of the pulley. With no water ingress and no movement, should be good to go!

  11. #11
    Very Active Member Freddy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BLUEKNIGHT911 View Post
    I find this issue interesting …. to the best of my knowledge … this was never a problem with the RT …. Why is it an issue with the F-3 ???? ….. Could this be similar to the DESS Fiasco ….. Not a problem until some engineer decided it needed Fixing …. NOW there is a problem … Is this a Canadian thing ????? ………...….good luck …. Mike

    This problem started in 2008 on the GS/RS models. The BRP engineers issued a TSB stating that the cause of the failure was 'insufficient clamping force' on the pulley - meaning that the bolt wasn't done up properly tight at the factory, so they increased the torque spec and told dealers to mark a X on the head of the bolt when it had been retorqued. That just about solved the problem except for folks whose trikes never got the retorque to the higher spec because they never got back to a dealer, or the dealer was ignorant.

    And don't pick on my Canadian friends or.....or..........or I'll say something nice about Donny Trump.

    There are several reports of this failure on the RT1330 that I've read hereabouts.
    The best substitute for brains is....................what?

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    Very Active Member BLUEKNIGHT911's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Freddy View Post
    This problem started in 2008 on the GS/RS models. The BRP engineers issued a TSB stating that the cause of the failure was 'insufficient clamping force' on the pulley - meaning that the bolt wasn't done up properly tight at the factory, so they increased the torque spec and told dealers to mark a X on the head of the bolt when it had been retorqued. That just about solved the problem except for folks whose trikes never got the retorque to the higher spec because they never got back to a dealer, or the dealer was ignorant.

    And don't pick on my Canadian friends or.....or..........or I'll say something nice about Donny Trump.

    There are several reports of this failure on the RT1330 that I've read hereabouts.
    Thanks for the info …… Mike …………….PS - the Canadians are not my enemy …..

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    You Know I've ridden two wheel motorcycles for 50+ years...ON almost all my off road bikes I changed the front chain drive sprockets to a smaller size for lower gearing for off road riding...From what I can remember most of these sprockets fit loosely on the transmission output shaft and were held on WITH a large E clip...I rode in every tube of mud hole that existed...I had chain and sprockets wear out from mud, dirt, sand, rocks and who knows what else....BUT I DO NOT REMEMBER OF EVER HAVING A SPROCKET TO SPLINE FAILURE...

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    So I have been thinking about using this since the solution changed from locking things down. Just been waiting to do my rear tire change at the same time.

    Have had it around all my life as my dad was a navy and merchant marine, ship board maintenance electrician.

    Regards,

    Don

    BTW: Don't get it on your hands or clothing. It doesn't wash out.

    "Mariner's Choice NMCBT-8, Marine Grade Never Seez, provides extreme pressure lubrication and protects against seizure, galling, and corrosion both above and below the water line. Use on winches, cables, bilge pumps, anchor lines, porthole studs, rigging, hoist cables, suspension bridges, wind turbines, offshore rigging, or other applications exposed to harsh salt water and freshwater conditions. Requires about 41% less torque while providing the same clamping force on threads. Perfect for high moisture environments!"

    neverseez-mariners-choice__11334.1516048593.jpg

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    My Spyder F3-S, 61,000 miles, has had the front sprocket fail 3 times. Seems like it lasts about 20,000 miles. I also have had several dirt bikes and never had to replace a sprocket.
    God bless those who serve/served our country!

  16. #16
    Very Active Member PMK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by toolie View Post
    PMK are you saying that your splines were lubricated from the factory?
    Yes, our RTS had lubricant applied at manufacture.

  17. #17
    Very Active Member PMK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spyderlass View Post
    I'm reading this thread and looking at the links, I'm mystified by the responses, the red dust is rust, the splines aren't wearing out, they're rusting out! For rust to form, water must be penetrating the splines therefore there must be space at the bolt/washer and/or space at the rear pulley flange.
    Filling the spline clearance with moly grease is a good idea, filling it with a water resistant grease might be a better idea.

    Ideally, in use there should be no movement between the splined shaft and the pulley so molybdenum to prevent wear shouldn't be necessary.

    The fix is to catch it before it starts and be sure the washer is good, there's no bruising on the pulley faces, plenty of water resistant grease to fill the splines and washer face to keep out the water, locktite on the thread and the bolt tightened properly so there is no movement of the pulley. With no water ingress and no movement, should be good to go!
    This is entirely incorrect. The process is fretting. A form of corrosion not associated with moisture, but rather microscopic high pressure movement. The movement generates extremely small oxide particles the further promote wear.

  18. #18
    Very Active Member PMK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by larryd View Post
    You Know I've ridden two wheel motorcycles for 50+ years...ON almost all my off road bikes I changed the front chain drive sprockets to a smaller size for lower gearing for off road riding...From what I can remember most of these sprockets fit loosely on the transmission output shaft and were held on WITH a large E clip...I rode in every tube of mud hole that existed...I had chain and sprockets wear out from mud, dirt, sand, rocks and who knows what else....BUT I DO NOT REMEMBER OF EVER HAVING A SPROCKET TO SPLINE FAILURE...

    I wish the same could be said regarding the countershaft splines on my 1981 KTM 495mc.

  19. #19
    Very Active Member PMK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dondje View Post
    So I have been thinking about using this since the solution changed from locking things down. Just been waiting to do my rear tire change at the same time.

    Have had it around all my life as my dad was a navy and merchant marine, ship board maintenance electrician.

    Regards,

    Don

    BTW: Don't get it on your hands or clothing. It doesn't wash out.

    "Mariner's Choice NMCBT-8, Marine Grade Never Seez, provides extreme pressure lubrication and protects against seizure, galling, and corrosion both above and below the water line. Use on winches, cables, bilge pumps, anchor lines, porthole studs, rigging, hoist cables, suspension bridges, wind turbines, offshore rigging, or other applications exposed to harsh salt water and freshwater conditions. Requires about 41% less torque while providing the same clamping force on threads. Perfect for high moisture environments!"

    neverseez-mariners-choice__11334.1516048593.jpg
    No doubt better than assembling dry, however, before considering an anti seize product, realize that often then tend to dry out when in service. Maybe have a look at the Honda and BMW driveshaft spline lubes or similar products. I do like anti seize in many applications, but not all applications.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PMK View Post
    This is entirely incorrect. The process is fretting. A form of corrosion not associated with moisture, but rather microscopic high pressure movement. The movement generates extremely small oxide particles the further promote wear.
    Yes, well I know what fretting is but many of the pictures of the issue have the rust on the outside of the sprocket. So if the bolt is tight and it's sealed and fretting, how does the fretted material get out of the spline to the outside of the sprocket?

    IMHO there's water involved. That Mariner's Choice never seize looks about the ticket to me!

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    Quote Originally Posted by PMK View Post
    No doubt better than assembling dry, however, before considering an anti seize product, realize that often then tend to dry out when in service. Maybe have a look at the Honda and BMW driveshaft spline lubes or similar products. I do like anti seize in many applications, but not all applications.
    I am guessing that you have never used this particular product. I have been using it for over 50yrs. I have a can of it that was my dad's that is over 40yo and it has not dried out. The lid hasn't been real tight on it either. I have used other anti-seize products that do dry out as you stated. But this one is the best.

    My guess is that the factory installed product washes/wears away, leaving the metal exposed and increases play between sprocket and shaft. This product won't do that even when exposed to salt water on the underside of a ship's hull. It will also hold up to temps up to 2400 deg. I will be using new product for my Spyder.

    Regards,

    Don

  22. #22
    Very Active Member jcthorne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BLUEKNIGHT911 View Post
    From what I have read about this …. RT - RTs - RTL do not have the Red Dust issue ……. Mike
    Unfortunately we have seen several RTs succumb to the same fate. Not as many as F3s but far more than zero.

    Blue Flame Spyder F3-S

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    Very Active Member PMK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spyderlass View Post
    Yes, well I know what fretting is but many of the pictures of the issue have the rust on the outside of the sprocket. So if the bolt is tight and it's sealed and fretting, how does the fretted material get out of the spline to the outside of the sprocket?

    IMHO there's water involved. That Mariner's Choice never seize looks about the ticket to me!
    All the best with your plan. If you fully understand fretting and the dynamics of how it is created, and propagates, plus have such faith in a using an anti seize vs more focused spline lubricant simply enjoy.

    For others reading this, the pulley is made of steel, same as the gearbox output shaft. Many people assume that seeing the rust involves moisture or water. In normal cases, such as a body panel on a car, you see the rust and it has that typical reddish color. The reddish color is the conversion of the iron within the steel, into iron oxide. In that situation, yes, water corrodes the material when combined with other stuff. Fretting is a non moisture, high pressure type corrosion. The pressure within the joint of two or more items still allows microscopic movement. On aircraft we often see fretting as rivets with black rings around the heads. Aluminum oxide is blackish in color. Again, rivets are a high pressure expanded tightly fit when properly driven. The Spyder pulley, with tension from the drive belt, and the inability to prevent the pulley from walking around the splines of the shaft as the pulley rotates, creates the needed movement for fretting to occurr. As for the idea of moisture being the culprit, consider the heat given off by the engines exhaust, plus the gearbox shaft itself runs a touch warm. These applications of heat would minimize any water intrusion issues or concerns if they existed. Regardless of how tight the bolt is, the pulley will still walk as the shaft is turned. The bolt does not apply anywhere near enough friction to the pulley mounting to prevent the pulley from moving. Consider, if the splines were removed, would the bolt and washer alone be adequate to propel the Spyder forward. Obviously, no. The splines are responsible for 99.999999% of making the Spyder drive go to the wheel.

    Could it be simply viable that as the splines fret, the pulley is now able to not only walk more on the splines, but also begin to not run true on center with the shaft AND with that, the washer and pulley faces begin to wear, creating the red dust from even more fretting that we see on the exterior of the pulley.

    The drive pulley is a maintenance item and wear item. While not specified in the manual to routinely remove the drive pulley, clean the splines, inspect, and if serviceable, lubricate and reinstall. What interval to reinspect, with a quality proper lubricant a guess is the 28,000 mile check.

  24. #24
    Active Member h0gr1der's Avatar
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    I don't have a dog in this race (yet, mine is new), but wonder if the high belt tensions Can Am recommends may have anything to do with the splines failing?
    h0gr1der
    2018 RT Limited Blue/Chrome SE6 *Tri-Axis Bars*Adjustable Driver Backrest*175/55R15 Vredestein Front, 205/60R15 Vredestein Rear Tires*Baja Ron Front Spring Pre-Load Adjusters*Roadster Renovations Vibration Damper*Misty Mountain Sheepskin seat cover*Centramatic balancers *Garmin Zumo 595LM GPS*KOTT Grills*BajaRon swaybar*SpyderPops Alignment*Missing Belt guard
    States Visited on Less than 4 wheels.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by PMK View Post
    All the best with your plan. If you fully understand fretting and the dynamics of how it is created, and propagates, plus have such faith in a using an anti seize vs more focused spline lubricant simply enjoy.

    The drive pulley is a maintenance item and wear item. While not specified in the manual to routinely remove the drive pulley, clean the splines, inspect, and if serviceable, lubricate and reinstall. What interval to reinspect, with a quality proper lubricant a guess is the 28,000 mile check.
    The anti seize that I referenced is an extreme high pressure lubricant designed for this type of application and more. It has an added benefit of anti seize properties and is extremely water proof. That is why the military uses it for all kinds of spline applications at sea and other extreme conditions. As I stated earlier, I believe that the factory lubricant breaks down. This creates an increased tolerance between the pulley and the shaft for wear (you call fretting), along with allowing water intrusion. Moisture's roll is when it does get in (yes it drys out, becoming a cycle), it helps breakdown of the lube even faster, and helps the acceleration of the color change of the iron dust.

    My thought for using the product I introduced is that not only does it have some of the best lubricating properties I know of that are needed for this application. Read its spec sheet. Just as important, and what makes it stand out in this case, is it also has staying properties that I don't believe the factory or most any other lube has.

    I agree with you that this a maintenance issue. I also believe from the millage that people are having problems at, that the stock lube should be replaced asap after purchase. What people use is up to them. I know what
    I am going to use. From that point, only time will tell.

    Regards,

    Don

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