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Engine noise? Don't believe'em!!

It was one of the regular busy Saturdays in February. The better part of the day was over and the work was looking like never-ending. Lots of bulleteers planning for one last ride before the summer kicks in, meaning lots of work for us. In came an Electra which was quite well maintained. The gentleman riding it got off the motorcycle and politely said the horn was not working. We didn't have time to attend to it but it was just a horn which wasn't making noise. Shouldn't be more than a loose coupler or a dangling wire. Asked our technician Guru to have a quick check. Guru checked the couplers, horn itself and even the switch, everything seemed to be in order. We had to examine the wiring and find the issue which needed more time. We apologized to the gentleman and requested him to come back on Monday so that we can check the issue and fix it.

 

Fast forward 2 weeks. It was a sunny Saturday morning. We were receiving vehicles for the day and the gentleman returned. He looked troubled and unhappy. Upon inquiring he said, despite maintaining the motorcycle with a lot of care, there is engine noise. I asked him for more details and he said - "I was in a hurry the other weekend and really needed the horn fixed. Took it to a local mechanic and got the wiring harness changed. Since then engine noise was coming while riding in 2nd gear. Took it back to him and he said there is noise coming from the connecting rod and costs about 7k to fix it." Although I was still pondering on the thought of what kind of mechanic changes complete wiring harness if the horn doesn't work, "engine noise while riding in 2nd gear" brought me back to the reality. Asked Guru to take the vehicle for a quick spin without telling him the complaint. While he slowly took off, I saw what was wrong. Guru came back in a minute and confirmed my doubt.

 

The cause of so called engine noise was a missing bolt which is supposed to keep the tank in its place. Yes, you read it right!! Now, the fuel tank in Electra is mounted on chassis and kept in its place by two bolts. The local mechanic who changed the wiring harness had forgotten to put one of them back. Due to vibration the tank was making rattling noise. But why it happened only in 2nd gear? It's common for a lot of people to revv their motorcycles in 2nd gear. During this time because of more vibration, the rattling noise was observed. And how this was diagnosed as engine noise still makes me curious!

 

And that's how we fixed the engine noise in a couple of minutes for 20 bucks. :P

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