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Discussion Starter #1
Good day evryone,

I have a 2002 honda rubison 500. The oil was change last fall and the bike din't run mutch sience. The bike is kind a new ot has 2500km on it and it's a 2002.

My problem, when the bike is warm, it take a good 30min. There is a loud noise coming from the bike when driving at constenr speed of arond 7kmh. The sound hapen in all mode L,H,ESP,D1,D2.

I talked to some people and most of them where telling me the problem was the control motor. Over the weekend I intalled a brand new control motor. It was 400$ with tax and it did not fix the problem.....

I'm reading the bike manuel and so far i can't find a solution. Could it be electrical? It really sound like a mecanical problem and when the oil get hot the problem shows. I'm thinking about bringing the bike to a honda dealer but i'm under the feeling this will cost me a lot.....

Other option could be to put seafoam in the oil, warm it up, drain and change the oil with some good oil like royal purpel and put some additif like lucus to see if this could solve the problem.

Is it bad for the quand to run with this problem?

Thanks for advise.

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well this is going to be a hard one to answer without hearing the noise its making?
does it make the noise when parked, or ONLY when driving?

if ONLY when driving, I would start by inspecting wheel bearings, and then CV joints, as if its NOT making the noise when parked that sort of rules out the motor IMO< and fan as well!

I don't see how draining the oil will help you here, as again if its a motor issue, it will make sound all the while when parked and you rev things up, NOT just when atv is moving!

you need to pin point where the sound is actually coming from

get atv hot or till sound starts, then lift atv up off the ground(all 4 wheels off ground safely) and then you can run things and get off atv and listen better for location of the sound!

once you get that done, let us know and we can help you more.

can also try getting some video of things, for sound and share that way too,
 

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Is it a whirring noise?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
It sound like gear ginding. Only when mouving at a steady speed 7k/h after bike is HOT. I need to have heard the fan kick couple of time before the noise start. Originaly the sound was only when going down a hill and the motor compresion would kick in or when howling log. It was verry hard to reproduce at the bigining. It's been over 2 years the bike make this sound. Now I can reproduce it all the time at 7kph when bike is hot. Reading other thread it look like these Hydro static transmition are prone to break. I'm thinking it's the Oil pump or the transmition.
 

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Oil pumps were iffy on the early Rubicons. I would limit run time until you get more advice on it.


The Hondamatics burn up IF the oil pump isn't working. The Hondamatic is the expensive part. The oil pumps aren't too bad. @harig is the resident expert on the Hondamatics.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Oil pumps were iffy on the early Rubicons. I would limit run time until you get more advice on it.


The Hondamatics burn up IF the oil pump isn't working. The Hondamatic is the expensive part. The oil pumps aren't too bad. @harig is the resident expert on the Hondamatics.
I know a guy who work in a honda dealer. He does nkt thunk my problem his the transmition because the noise is only when the bike is warm. He told me to bring it to him he has more tool at work. I'm trying to isolate the problem on my own because i like to do this in general. However this problem is turning into a nightmare....

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well waiting 2 yrs to find the problem isn't going to be good if it IS the trans! could have been something more simple/cheaper, and now be a larger more costly repair bill!
just so you know here!
always best to find problems when there new and smaller , than waiting!


trans problems can act up as temps of fluid builds and them changes how pressure works in it!

again, get atv up off the ground with tires up, and see if you can pin point sound better!, there are a LOT of places that can make sound when things are hot and moving, trans, CV joints, bearings, and so on,
better you pin point sound, better we can help you!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
well waiting 2 yrs to find the problem isn't going to be good if it IS the trans! could have been something more simple/cheaper, and now be a larger more costly repair bill!
just so you know here!
always best to find problems when there new and smaller , than waiting!


trans problems can act up as temps of fluid builds and them changes how pressure works in it!

again, get atv up off the ground with tires up, and see if you can pin point sound better!, there are a LOT of places that can make sound when things are hot and moving, trans, CV joints, bearings, and so on,
better you pin point sound, better we can help you!
The tow mecanic that i talked to in the past tought it was the control motor. It vabrate when the sound happen. It look like the sound is coming from there. However i haven't try reproducing the sound with the quand lifted from the ground. The quad is at my cottage I will try that next time i go up there. I know i waited 2 years... but i never use the bike. I belived it had 1900km when i got it 5 years ago. It's now at 2500km

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well waiting 2 yrs low use or not, problems don;t fix them self LOL
and just tend to get bigger more costly as you wait!, I was just saying, NOT bashing on you!
with us being on a screen "X" far away, NOT hearing the sound, its very hard to GUESS at what your problem is, NOT knowing even where the sound is coming from!
Hondamatic trans are known to NOT be the best design and fail often, costing more to fix, than most are worth to fix!
its why they only made them a few yrs and did away with them! so a heads up if that IS what is wrong here!
 

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Ehhhh, I've stayed away from the Hondamatics after seeing all the early model problems people where having, but after seeing @basfnb's 06 Rubicon get beat on for 10 years of hard use, I've kinda changed my mind on them.


The early Rubicons definitely had issues. Oil pumps or Hondamatics, depending on who you ask, but they would either go 10K miles without a hiccup or blow up with 500 miles of light riding on them.


05-14 Rubicons you hardly ever see transmission issues. In fact, I've never personally seen an 05-14 that had transmission issues. They DO have a lot of electrical crap on them and that could be a PITA to troubleshoot, but in the 10 years I've been around these things, they 05-up Rubicons have changed my mind. Basfnb's has been tough. Ridden hard, put up wet, and he's never had electrical or transmission problems. Just bearings and a top end cause he didn't maintain his air filter.


My father in law has an 06 with 14K on it. It's been abused, stolen and recovered, and is still ticking (it really does tick now, but still runs, drives, and doesn't smoke).


We have another guy we ride with who sank his 07 3-4 years ago. Flushed it out, still runs great to this day.


I got one a few months ago. It had electrical issues, so I put a used wiring harness on it and so far it's been a great machine. I really like the seamless power from the Hondamatic versus the clunky shifting in my wife's 420AT with the newer DCT style automatic transmission.


I guess automatics have always seemed like voodoo magic to me, and the Hondamatic is no different in that regard, but after @harig posting up on how they work, what could possibly go wrong, and just seeing some of them hold up to a lot of abuse over a long period of time, I've become a fan of the 05-14 Rubicons.
 

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first thing u need to do is check the oil pressure, anytime the clutch is engaged the hondamatic is spinning even in neutral, the hondamatic is gear driven off of the clutch, that being said it should make the noise even in neutral if the hondamatic is bad. If only while moving in gear at 7kmh it is something in the driveline making the noise most likely. the 2001 to 2004 ruby's had oil pump bypass that would stick open while cold and when they warmed up the oil pressure would be way to low with the bypass stuck open and burn up the hondamatic. the hondamatic actually was not the problem on the early ruby's the defective oil pump caused the hondamatics to fail...
have you tried running it in electric shift mode ( manually shifting it)to see if it does it?
When the hondamatic swash plate bearing goes out it does make noise but it changes pitch with increase or decrease of speed not just at one speed.
i have seen some older Ruby's with a zillion miles and still running and some fail with less than 500 miles.
i truly believe that all ruby's should run synthetic oil, i have not seen one with a bad hondmatic that used synthetic oil from day one. they may be out there but i have not seen one.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
first thing u need to do is check the oil pressure, anytime the clutch is engaged the hondamatic is spinning even in neutral, the hondamatic is gear driven off of the clutch, that being said it should make the noise even in neutral if the hondamatic is bad. If only while moving in gear at 7kmh it is something in the driveline making the noise most likely. the 2001 to 2004 ruby's had oil pump bypass that would stick open while cold and when they warmed up the oil pressure would be way to low with the bypass stuck open and burn up the hondamatic. the hondamatic actually was not the problem on the early ruby's the defective oil pump caused the hondamatics to fail...
have you tried running it in electric shift mode ( manually shifting it)to see if it does it?
When the hondamatic swash plate bearing goes out it does make noise but it changes pitch with increase or decrease of speed not just at one speed.
i have seen some older Ruby's with a zillion miles and still running and some fail with less than 500 miles.
i truly believe that all ruby's should run synthetic oil, i have not seen one with a bad hondmatic that used synthetic oil from day one. they may be out there but i have not seen one.
I'll have to check if it make the noise in neutral. I'm predy sure it does not, i'll have to verified. I had the noise hapen in reverse once or twice. It also does the sound in all mode. In manual shift on first gear at 7kph. I'm not sure what type of oil is in the bike at the moment. When i got the bike originaly at 1900km. The previous owner had twice thw oil needed in the bike. He din't know how to drain it properly. I have no idea for how long the bike ran with twice the oil, but the air filter was sock with motor oil has the oil was coming out of the intake.... this could probably be the reason for the noise. At the tine i din't know the bike share the same oil for the motor and tranny.

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What type and weight of oil are you using? The grinding noise I'd the transmission either from the oil being too hot and too thin or low oil pressure.

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the ruby has an external oil tank, it is not possible to have twice the oil in it, maybe a quart or two extra. drain oil and change oil filter. I would use Rotella t-6 5-40 in it. it takes 4.9 quarts to fill after oil and filter change. remove the crankcase and oil tank drains. when you check oil do not screw in the dipstick, just insert to the threads. here is a link to shop manual...
https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1eqVb5JW5em4PBbDrgHsRbhFKH5rFr75l?sort=13&direction=a
 

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Discussion Starter #15
the ruby has an external oil tank, it is not possible to have twice the oil in it, maybe a quart or two extra. drain oil and change oil filter. I would use Rotella t-6 5-40 in it. it takes 4.9 quarts to fill after oil and filter change. remove the crankcase and oil tank drains. when you check oil do not screw in the dipstick, just insert to the threads. here is a link to shop manual...
https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1eqVb5JW5em4PBbDrgHsRbhFKH5rFr75l?sort=13&direction=a
The bike is at the dealership for an estimate...

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I finaly got a response from the dealer. They din't check the oil pump presure and spent 3 hours dissasmbling the bike. They are telling me the centrifuse clutch is burn out. centrifuse may be a french term. Anyway, a clutch is burn. 1100$ to replace and put the bike back togerter. In order to check the oil presure the bike need to be reassemble. The dealer is not 100% sure the clutch replacement will fix the problem they are 100% that the clutch is toast.

I dont know what to do. They are telling they are 80% sure my problem is the clutch. What do you guys think?

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The oil pressure is the first thing they should have checked before taking it apart. Having worked at a Honda dealer for 10 years, I rebuilt almost a dozen of the 2001-2002 motors for Hondamatic and oil pump issues. The first thing I always did was check the oil pressure. If it is the Hondamatic, it most likely will not make noise in neutral, only under a load. And it shouldn't have taken 3 hours to remove the front engine cover to get to the centrifugal clutch. If its $1100 US dollars, that seems steep for a clutch replacement. It may be clutch if its burnt up, so hopefully it will take care of your issue.
 

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I'm pisss off because I told them to check the oil presure. That the bike was making noise at 7kph and when compressing. No noise in neutral and only when the bike is really warm. Now they are exactly at 3hour in the job, the bike is all dissamble in the garage and they want a charge me and extrat 4hour to change the clutch and reassemble. I had told them i wanted and estimate before they take it down. The 1100$ is cabadian so this would be arond 700us i think. Event if they do the job they can garantie it will fix the problem because they din't check the oil presure.... it's a certified honda dealer that is about 200km drive from my place. I had and other dealer closer, but i had good reference to go to the other dealer... i'm piss.

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Sounds like the dealer is trying to corner you and make you agree to get screwed.


I would be asking them WHY they started work when you told them you wanted an estimate before they tore into it.


Threaten to contact Honda corporate.


At this point you're probably going to get hosed. This kind of thing is why I stopped taking ANYTHING to anyone else to get it fixed. I do everything myself now. If I can't figure it out using the internet then it stays broken or I get rid of it.


Do they have the engine pulled or did they just remove the oil tank and front cover?
 

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Depending on what they replace the price isnt that far off for a dealer. Clutch drum, weights, 1 way bearing, nut, oil and filter would come to around $370 on the retail side. Its roughly a 3 hrs job so they would hit you for probably 4 hours labor so roughly another $300 depending on rates. That puts it close in the US funds side.

It depends on what they are replacing though. For me, most of the time I can just hear the noise and give a rough estimate. Customers still want it torn down so I can tell them the same thing. lol

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