I've had my '07 Dyna (FXDB Street Bob) for about 6 years or so. For most of this time I've been chasing extraneous noises that appeared to be coming from the front end. At long last, I think I've finally got things squared away as a short test ride didn't present any of the rattling or banging noises I've been hearing.
Here are the things I've done to this bike in the last few years:
- Adjust the tension on the fork stem bearings, at least four times.(Set according to the SM flop test)
- Make sure that the exhaust heat shields are nice and tight.
- Check to see if the tank bolts are tight.
- Check inside the tank to see if anything inside is loose.
- Check for looseness in front wheel, front fender, windshield, brake rotor and caliper. (I discovered that my two-piece rotor had some loose bolts.)
- Replacing the upper engine isolator.
- Replace the OEM shift linkage with an aftermarket one that is adjustable.
- Replace the fork tubes and bushings, which were somewhat worn.
- Remove air cleaner to see if anything is loose on the throttle body, etc.
- Check foot pegs for looseness.
After all this, I was still getting some noises that shouldn't be there. I had the bike on my lift table, and was getting ready to inspect the fork stem bearings. I should mention that the front end is after-market -- Roland Sands Design, so not OEM. I didn't think the problem was in the fork stem bearings, as they move smoothly and I can't wiggle the front end with the front wheel raised, but I haven't been able to find problems anywhere else.
Taking the front end apart involves a lot of work, notably removing the tank to get at the connectors for the two looms that come out of the bars and go through the upper triple tree. Once the bike was up on the lift table, I thought I would check once more to see if the fork stem nut and the gear-looking nut that tensions the fork stem bearings had come loose. When I went to loosen the fork stem nut, it came loose with almost zero effort, and the washer under it with a locking tab didn't have its tab bent.
I put some blue lok-tite on the stem nut, torqued it down to 50 ft-lb, bent the tab to hold the nut in place, and torqued the four pinch bolts on the fork tubes. When all was back together, I took her out for a short ride. Result -- no noises!
I'm glad I'm not paying myself by the hour!