Question about 1998 Suzuki VZ 800 Marauder

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Engine Knock/Rod Bearing

I just bought a 98 Suzuki Marauder with 2k miles on it. The engine knocks so I decided to remove and investigate. The rod on the front piston looks to be bent. Is this the way it is from the factory? Also the bearing seems to be shot. Am I looking at replacing the crank or would this be something I could have machined at a local machine shop? Also would anyone know the cost for a new/used rod, bearing, and crank if needed? Thank you in advance for your help.

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1.No, the connecting rod is not bent from the factory.

2.Bearing is shot for that rod? No matter, as you will be replacing that rod, and the rod bearings for both rods. Doesn't make sense to replace one while you're deep in there, and it's probably in a worn out shape anyway. Besides, if that rod bearing even STARTED to spin, you'd have to have the lower end of the rod bore resized, anyway.

Observe the wear pattern of the rod bearings. Are they worn off to one side somewhat. The wear pattern should be even down the middle of the bearing. If it's off to one side somewhat, you have a twisted crank.
Sounds like somebody hit high RPM's and missed a shift! (Or wound it so tight they went way above the red zone in the tach)

3.Machine the crank? Why? Crank pin surface is damaged? You can only turn it down so much. Probably .020, (20 thousandths), to clean it up, or the crank is shot. (.030 is about a 32nd of an inch. Actually it's .0325)
If the crank pin, (Rod pin) surface is damaged, have a skilled machinist take a look, and see if it will clean up at the minimum required diameter. It's in the book.

4.Search the bike junkyards, (EXCUSE ME! Salvage yards!), for parts, and check Ebay.

5.I know you know this, but everything must be PERFECT when you reassemble the lower end. Not close -> PERFECT!! Otherwise this puppy will scatter across the road, when you hit 65 miles an hour, and 5000 grand on the tach! (When you're on the on ramp approaching the highway)

Posted on Jul 13, 2009

  • joecoolvette
    joecoolvette Jul 13, 2009

    Thank you for the rating. Most kind!
    I made a typo. 1/32nd of an inch is .03125 (You know how it is with machinists. We need everything exact! lol!)


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I have a crankshaft for sale. I bought a 2000 with a blown crank. After eight months I found a crank for it. It is in perfect condition, it came from a wrecked 2002 with less than 5K on it. I have the crank and rods in perfect condition. I will sell them for $300 if you still need them. Email me at dvecchio.aoi@gmail.com

Posted on Sep 30, 2009

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A KNOCKING SOUND IN THE ENGINE IS MOST LIKELY CAUSED BY ONE OF THE FOLLOWING
1. PISTON SLAP: Makes a sharp metallic noise. Idle engine and short out each cylinder plug. The noise will disappear when plug with bad piston is shorted. Noise will also disappear at acceleration. This can be caused by worn or out of round cylinder, or broken piston ring. Correct problem by re-boring cylinder and/or replacing piston.
2. VALVE NOISE: Makes clicking or rattle noise. Caused by excessive wear on valve stem or lifter, out of adjustment, or stuck valve. Correct by adjusting valve clearance, replace worn valve or lifter, regrind cam, replace valve guide and /or valve. A stuck valve can sometimes be loosened by passing oil through the carburetor while engine is running.

3. ROD BEARING KNOCK: Makes sharp metallic noise similar to a piston slap. Detection is opposite of piston slap. Rod knock is not heard at idle. Knock becomes louder as engine speed is increased. Caused by excessive rod bearing clearance. Correct by adjusting rod bearing clearance to .0015 inches by removing shims. May require re-pouring rod bearing.
4. REAR MAIN BEARING KNOCK: Makes dull knocking or thud noise. Detected at speeds between 20 and 50 MPH. Knock will normally decrease or disappear while pulling or decelerating. Noise will be detected the loudest at normal driving speed, when not pulling or decelerating. Correct by adjusting bearing clearance to .001 to .0015 inches. If knock is excessive, crank should be checked for out of roundness. May need to re-pour all main bearings to correct.
5. TIMING GEAR KNOCK: usually the most difficult to diagnose. If gear is loose or badly worn it will knock in all ranges. Run engine slightly above idle speed. Slowly open and close throttle. Knock will continue to be present, but just as engine slows down knock will become a slight rattle. Remove timing pin and reinsert into timing hole on timing gear cover. Press timing pin tightly against timing gear and accelerate slightly above idle. Knock will significantly be reduced or disappear. Correct by replacing both timing gear and crank gear as a matched set. The two gears should have a backlash clearance of .003 to .004. If more than .009 inch backlash, an oversize (.005) timing gear should be installed.
6. WRIST PIN SLAP: This can not be detected by shorting out the cylinder plugs. Rapidly accelerate and decelerate the engine speed. The engine will pass through a certain speed range when the wrist pin will rattle at about the same pitch as a valve tappet noise. This can be corrected by installing a new wrist pin bushing in the rod or new wrist pin f badly worn. Wrist pin should fit the piston and connecting rod with a tight metal to metal fit. The pin can be pushed into the piston and rod with a slight pressure of the hand. Pin to rod clearance is .0003 to .0005 inches.

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TROUBLESHOOTING ENGINE NOISES
A KNOCKING SOUND IN THE ENGINE IS MOST LIKELY CAUSED BY ONE OF THE FOLLOWING
1. PISTON SLAP: Makes a sharp metallic noise. Idle engine and short out each cylinder plug. The noise will disappear when plug with bad piston is shorted. Noise will also disappear at acceleration. This can be caused by worn or out of round cylinder, or broken piston ring. Correct problem by re-boring cylinder and/or replacing piston.
2. VALVE NOISE: Makes clicking or rattle noise. Caused by excessive wear on valve stem or lifter, out of adjustment, or stuck valve. Correct by adjusting valve clearance, replace worn valve or lifter, regrind cam, replace valve guide and /or valve. A stuck valve can sometimes be loosened by passing oil through the carburetor while engine is running.

3. ROD BEARING KNOCK: Makes sharp metallic noise similar to a piston slap. Detection is opposite of piston slap. Rod knock is not heard at idle. Knock becomes louder as engine speed is increased. Caused by excessive rod bearing clearance. Correct by adjusting rod bearing clearance to .0015 inches by removing shims. May require re-pouring rod bearing.
4. REAR MAIN BEARING KNOCK: Makes dull knocking or thud noise. Detected at speeds between 20 and 50 MPH. Knock will normally decrease or disappear while pulling or decelerating. Noise will be detected the loudest at normal driving speed, when not pulling or decelerating. Correct by adjusting bearing clearance to .001 to .0015 inches. If knock is excessive, crank should be checked for out of roundness. May need to re-pour all main bearings to correct.
5. TIMING GEAR KNOCK: usually the most difficult to diagnose. If gear is loose or badly worn it will knock in all ranges. Run engine slightly above idle speed. Slowly open and close throttle. Knock will continue to be present, but just as engine slows down knock will become a slight rattle. Remove timing pin and reinsert into timing hole on timing gear cover. Press timing pin tightly against timing gear and accelerate slightly above idle. Knock will significantly be reduced or disappear. Correct by replacing both timing gear and crank gear as a matched set. The two gears should have a backlash clearance of .003 to .004. If more than .009 inch backlash, an oversize (.005) timing gear should be installed.
6. WRIST PIN SLAP: This can not be detected by shorting out the cylinder plugs. Rapidly accelerate and decelerate the engine speed. The engine will pass through a certain speed range when the wrist pin will rattle at about the same pitch as a valve tappet noise. This can be corrected by installing a new wrist pin bushing in the rod or new wrist pin f badly worn. Wrist pin should fit the piston and connecting rod with a tight metal to metal fit. The pin can be pushed into the piston and rod with a slight pressure of the hand. Pin to rod clearance is .0003 to .0005 inches.

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A KNOCKING SOUND IN THE ENGINE IS MOST LIKELY CAUSED BY ONE OF THE FOLLOWING
1. PISTON SLAP: Makes a sharp metallic noise. Idle engine and short out each cylinder plug. The noise will disappear when plug with bad piston is shorted. Noise will also disappear at acceleration. This can be caused by worn or out of round cylinder, or broken piston ring. Correct problem by re-boring cylinder and/or replacing piston.
2. VALVE NOISE: Makes clicking or rattle noise. Caused by excessive wear on valve stem or lifter, out of adjustment, or stuck valve. Correct by adjusting valve clearance, replace worn valve or lifter, regrind cam, replace valve guide and /or valve. A stuck valve can sometimes be loosened by passing oil through the carburetor while engine is running.

3. ROD BEARING KNOCK: Makes sharp metallic noise similar to a piston slap. Detection is opposite of piston slap. Rod knock is not heard at idle. Knock becomes louder as engine speed is increased. Caused by excessive rod bearing clearance. Correct by adjusting rod bearing clearance to .0015 inches by removing shims. May require re-pouring rod bearing.
4. REAR MAIN BEARING KNOCK: Makes dull knocking or thud noise. Detected at speeds between 20 and 50 MPH. Knock will normally decrease or disappear while pulling or decelerating. Noise will be detected the loudest at normal driving speed, when not pulling or decelerating. Correct by adjusting bearing clearance to .001 to .0015 inches. If knock is excessive, crank should be checked for out of roundness. May need to re-pour all main bearings to correct.
5. TIMING GEAR KNOCK: usually the most difficult to diagnose. If gear is loose or badly worn it will knock in all ranges. Run engine slightly above idle speed. Slowly open and close throttle. Knock will continue to be present, but just as engine slows down knock will become a slight rattle. Remove timing pin and reinsert into timing hole on timing gear cover. Press timing pin tightly against timing gear and accelerate slightly above idle. Knock will significantly be reduced or disappear. Correct by replacing both timing gear and crank gear as a matched set. The two gears should have a backlash clearance of .003 to .004. If more than .009 inch backlash, an oversize (.005) timing gear should be installed.
6. WRIST PIN SLAP: This can not be detected by shorting out the cylinder plugs. Rapidly accelerate and decelerate the engine speed. The engine will pass through a certain speed range when the wrist pin will rattle at about the same pitch as a valve tappet noise. This can be corrected by installing a new wrist pin bushing in the rod or new wrist pin f badly worn. Wrist pin should fit the piston and connecting rod with a tight metal to metal fit. The pin can be pushed into the piston and rod with a slight pressure of the hand. Pin to rod clearance is .0003 to .0005 inches.

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A KNOCKING SOUND IN THE ENGINE IS MOST LIKELY CAUSED BY ONE OF THE FOLLOWING
1. PISTON SLAP: Makes a sharp metallic noise. Idle engine and short out each cylinder plug. The noise will disappear when plug with bad piston is shorted. Noise will also disappear at acceleration. This can be caused by worn or out of round cylinder, or broken piston ring. Correct problem by re-boring cylinder and/or replacing piston.
2. VALVE NOISE: Makes clicking or rattle noise. Caused by excessive wear on valve stem or lifter, out of adjustment, or stuck valve. Correct by adjusting valve clearance, replace worn valve or lifter, regrind cam, replace valve guide and /or valve. A stuck valve can sometimes be loosened by passing oil through the carburetor while engine is running.

3. ROD BEARING KNOCK: Makes sharp metallic noise similar to a piston slap. Detection is opposite of piston slap. Rod knock is not heard at idle. Knock becomes louder as engine speed is increased. Caused by excessive rod bearing clearance. Correct by adjusting rod bearing clearance to .0015 inches by removing shims. May require re-pouring rod bearing.
4. REAR MAIN BEARING KNOCK: Makes dull knocking or thud noise. Detected at speeds between 20 and 50 MPH. Knock will normally decrease or disappear while pulling or decelerating. Noise will be detected the loudest at normal driving speed, when not pulling or decelerating. Correct by adjusting bearing clearance to .001 to .0015 inches. If knock is excessive, crank should be checked for out of roundness. May need to re-pour all main bearings to correct.
5. TIMING GEAR KNOCK: usually the most difficult to diagnose. If gear is loose or badly worn it will knock in all ranges. Run engine slightly above idle speed. Slowly open and close throttle. Knock will continue to be present, but just as engine slows down knock will become a slight rattle. Remove timing pin and reinsert into timing hole on timing gear cover. Press timing pin tightly against timing gear and accelerate slightly above idle. Knock will significantly be reduced or disappear. Correct by replacing both timing gear and crank gear as a matched set. The two gears should have a backlash clearance of .003 to .004. If more than .009 inch backlash, an oversize (.005) timing gear should be installed.
6. WRIST PIN SLAP: This can not be detected by shorting out the cylinder plugs. Rapidly accelerate and decelerate the engine speed. The engine will pass through a certain speed range when the wrist pin will rattle at about the same pitch as a valve tappet noise. This can be corrected by installing a new wrist pin bushing in the rod or new wrist pin f badly worn. Wrist pin should fit the piston and connecting rod with a tight metal to metal fit. The pin can be pushed into the piston and rod with a slight pressure of the hand. Pin to rod clearance is .0003 to .0005 inches.

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have truck scanned for trouble code most auto stores such as auto zone/ advanced auto do it for free code gives u start point as to knock which is where code is coming from most knock noise is lower engine problems rod knock-wrist pin -main bearing going

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You can not put a liquid where metal is supposed to be. Just a general rule of thumb. The high RPM's had been too much for the engine, and A rod bearing, or rod knocking is about the same thing. Dont try the heavier oil thing, I hate when ppl suggest such stuff. Just replace the bearing, or in most cases and cost efficent, the engine.

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1986 FORD 300 SIX CYLINDER ENGINE KNOCKS


Hi Bill 609!

Definitely sound like a rod insert to me. With my practiced ear, I cna tell the difference between a main bearing knock (deeper sound, more of a thudding noise), rod bearing knock (not so deep, gets louder as the engine revs, kind of a rat-tat-tat-tapping noise), and a wrist-pin knock (not quite as loud or deep and gets louder with decelerating RPM).

You can tell which cylinder the knock is on by removing the spark wires to each cylinder one at a time while the engine is still cold enough to knock. (Don't get shocked!)... when you hit the right one, the knock will noticeably quieten or possibly quit altogether!

The 300 Six is a tough old motor and I have seen them survive for years with rod knocks... Just allow the engine ample warm-up time before driving, drive on the conservative side, and keep an eye on oil level and pressure.

An oil and filter change to a higher viscosity oil with a can of STP Oil Treatment (Or something similar) is a good band-aid fix for now, I would recommend Castrol GTX 20/50w... in my opinion, Castrol is the best brand out there, I use it religiously - - - I have a customer with a Chevy Suburban who has followed my advice and adhered to good maintenance discipline that has racked up over 300,000 miles on the original small block and no consumption or engine issues, and is still running strong!

Bill, the temporary fix will work for a while, hopefully a long while --- BUT when it reaches the point that the knock doesn't go away, it is time to park it until the real repair can be done --- otherwise you risk throwing a rod and destroying your engine beyond repair!!!

Please don't hesitate to post a comment or ask if you have further questions. I hope this information answers your question and concerns and wish you well with the Ford. *** And remember to rate my assistance... Your rating is my only compensation for helping you in the free blog!!!***

Thanks!
-WildBill

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