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1998 Ural Speedometer buzzing and flipping wildly


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Hi all,

I'm experiencing an issue where my speedometer will suddenly start buzzing loudly, and the indicator needle oscillates wildly when I get above about 30 mph.  I can feel the buzzing through the handlebars and on the speedo itself if I touch it with my hand.  As I slow down the buzzing slows, until I get to almost a stop again.  Then it'll start up again if I get above about 30 mph again.

Previously I was only experiencing this in cold weather; it seemed fine during the warmer months.  I recently installed a new speedometer cable, but that hasn't helped (and it's still cold here, we're actually getting snow in Seattle!).

Ideas?  I have over 100,000km on this bike, so I'm guessing the speedometer is long overdue for some love.  My current plan is to disassemble the speedometer and lubricate it to see if that helps, using myural.com as a guide (http://myural.com/speedometer_disassembly__repair.htm).  I'm hoping it's not the case that the socket is stripped/rounded out, so the square cable is spinning freely in there. 

Has anyone else experienced a similar issue?  Anything specific I should do while I've got it apart?  Things to watch out for?

Thanks in advance!

NoJoe

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NoJoe:

Have your talented Wife machine a new brass bearing for the speedometer, assuming there is such a thing in the speedo housing.

Yes, I'm serious...  😁

RussN

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Thanks both of you.  🙂

I've pulled the speedometer apart and have given the spinning bits a good few sprays of WD-40.  Hopefully I won't have to replace the bearing, but Jess certainly could make one if we needed!

I realized the speedometer needle that had fallen off was still rattling around in there...  I'm going to feel really dumb if that was getting stuck somewhere, causing the buzzing.  I've superglued the broken needle back on and I'll let it sit for a while before I accidentally break it back off again put it back together.

Hopefully I'll have this put back together in time to go do donuts in the snow in a parking lot tomorrow!

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There is a tiny hole located in the threaded boss that holds the speedometer cable. Put a little light machine oil in it. That should cure the problem. According to the manual you should put a drop of oil in that hole once a year.

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5 minutes ago, NoJoe said:

Thanks both of you.  🙂

I've pulled the speedometer apart and have given the spinning bits a good few sprays of WD-40.  Hopefully I won't have to replace the bearing, but Jess certainly could make one if we needed!

I realized the speedometer needle that had fallen off was still rattling around in there...  I'm going to feel really dumb if that was getting stuck somewhere, causing the buzzing.  I've superglued the broken needle back on and I'll let it sit for a while before I accidentally break it back off again put it back together.

Hopefully I'll have this put back together in time to go do donuts in the snow in a parking lot tomorrow!

WD-40 is not a good lubricant. The WD of WD-40 stands for Water Displacing. It displaces water and prevents rust. It lubricates as long as it remains a liquid but once it evaporates it's lubrication properties disappear. 3 in 1 machine oil will work fine or a similar light machine oil such as air tool oil that you place a few drops of into the compressed air inlet of an air operated tool. 

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I'll see if I can get out to the hardware store in the morning to pick up some light machine oil.  The car we have isn't great for snow, but hopefully it won't be too bad.  Definitely anxious to get the Ural properly lubed and put back together!

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Ditto on the oil, WD40 doesn't hang around long. Also, if you still have it apart and want to brighten your speedo at night this is the time to do it. Remove the 2 green filters to get a whiter light, the filters remove at least 50% of the light. Also, replacing the incandescent bulbs with LEDs helps enormously but this can be done at any time.

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Nice to have a project while getting snowed in!  We look forward to hearing of your repair success!

Down here in the Columbia River Gorge (Washington/Oregon border) we are fully snowed in with the main roads/freeways closed and several more feet of snow forecast!

I don't think I could even get our Retro out of the garage until mid next week!   It will be interesting to see how much snow you get in Seattle!

Portland is snowed/iced in too, with more on the way.

Y'all stay safe!

RussN

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11 hours ago, RussN said:

Down here in the Columbia River Gorge (Washington/Oregon border) we are fully snowed in with the main roads/freeways closed and several more feet of snow forecast!

Oh yeah, I saw that I-84 is closed today.  I thought "Well, they're not getting in to Portland any time soon!"  😉  And there's enough snow here (probably a good 6-7 inches!) that I don't want to try even getting the Ural out to a parking lot to do donuts.  So the speedometer is sitting safely disassembled on the counter, and I'll grab some light oil once things thaw out in a couple days.

Overall the disassembly process was pretty painless, and I was even able to superglue the speedometer needle back on...!  I hope it stays this time.

 

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Success!  Thank you all for your advice.  I was able to pick up some 3-in-1 light oil from the hardware store yesterday once the snow was gone, and got the thing lubricated, put back together, and on the bike today.

I took it for a test ride and the buzzing is gone.  Also the needle is way more precise now.  Accuracy may be another matter, but that needle certainly is sure of where it's pointing now!  I don't think I remember it ever behaving this well.

I think I'm ready for riding season!

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Way to go, NoJoe!  A little oil and TLC...

That speedo might now read better/more accurate than when we purchased that new Ural in 1998!

So pleased you continue to take care of it.

Enjoy The Rides,

RussN

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