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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, I might not be able to describe the fault with words, so let's use a pic.
Bike is '18 Chieftain, 5200km (appr 3250 miles) since new, nothing - nothing - has been done, except first service at dealer.
Rear tyre has been assembled at Indian's facory, (hopefully) with right parts and right torques.
That happened while riding. A lot of noise, like something was hitting the bike - and, it was. The part which came loose at the end of swingarm.
If You brake hard at that moment, a belt might not be able to keep axle in the slot, made for it - and some serious accident might happen.

As this happened in Europe, I'm a bit curious to hear if this is common in US?
Victory seems to have similar construction as Indian, and a couple of Victory's broken swingarms are easily found from the internet.

That was my friends bike, an arm was broken yesterday, so on Monday he'll hopefully hear, what our local dealer will tell about it.

At this moment we're strongly suspecting, a swingarm has been broken for a while (as it was with one Victory's case, found on Victory' forum), and at that moment the piece started to jump inside the rear fender, the bolt was cut. The one with which You set the tension to the belt.
Obviously nothing serious has happened so far as these parts are still on sale.
 

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The damaged swing arm on the Victory forum was done by the dealer. Many Polaris motorcycle techs (not all) are apes with hammers.

Now on the Indian, there is more to the story. Either it was over-torqued at the factory, or the dealer screwed it up during the 500 mikes service (supposed to re-tighten the belt). Most likley an over torque situation with the wheel not aligned. Or riding shenanigans. Hitting a huge pot hole at speed, all kinds of reasons. Hairline crack from the factory.

But this and the one on the Victory forum are the only ones I have heard of.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Actually, on the Victory forum... there's 3 of them. Anyhow, if - who ever is installing the rear wheel - can do this, with "quite normal" methods, a bit overtightening/not exactly lined, this is quite a dangerous result.
Like in this case - if Indian factory itself is not capable of installing it better than this, how can they expect some individuals/local "repair shops" to do a proper work??
In this case, it was broken after an axle support... what if it will go just in front of it? Rear wheel will "collapse" to the fender??

Like the 3rd guy in the Victory forum... just had a closer look at his swingarm... just to realize there's a hair crack...
I'd have an other look to my swingarm, if I'd have an Indian.

Does anybody know if any has got broken from a left side?
 

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You see more and more mechanics using impact wrenches to loosen just about everything. Someone in a hurry can have it set to tighten and crank on it for a while before realizing it’s in tighten mode, then the damage is done
 

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Over-tightening at the factory is HIGHLY unlikely. All of the fasteners are attached using computer controlled tools and set to those specifications. That certainly doesn't mean a hairline crack from the casting process was missed, or something along those lines.
 

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Over-tightening at the factory is HIGHLY unlikely. All of the fasteners are attached using computer controlled tools and set to those specifications. That certainly doesn't mean a hairline crack from the casting process was missed, or something along those lines.
the computerized controls have to be calibrated. They do go out of spec. That being said we most likely will not know the real cause
 

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"Bike is '18 Chieftain, 5200km (appr 3250 miles) since new, nothing - nothing - has been done, except first service at dealer."

"If You brake hard at that moment, a belt might not be able to keep axle in the slot, made for it - and some serious accident might happen."

"That was my friends bike, an arm was broken yesterday, so on Monday he'll hopefully hear, what our local dealer will tell about it."

The OP said- It's not his bike, it's his friends Indian bike. Bought new.

Not sure what the braking hard at that moment-meaning is. Was the owner braking really hard at the moment and then noticed it or caused it?

I've seen very few of these types of failures over my 40+ yrs of being around bikes. Usually it was a result of 1 of 3 things, a rare faulty factory casting of the swing-arm, assembly error- over tightening of the axle nut or operator error of some sort. If I was there trying to figure out what happened is to try and get a torque reading of that axle nut then go from there & try to rule out each item till you get to the most likely cause.

Regardless, glad no one got hurt based so far on what was posted.
 

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Pretty serious failure, could have been catastrophic, your friend is fortunate it was not a worse outcome
 

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Wow, haven't seen anything like that before.has to be a bad casting,but I'm sure they will try to figure out how it's your fault somehow.
 

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What is funny for me, that the part that fell off while driving and should have caused noise when it hit the bike, doesn't look like it hit something.

And how he gets it back in his hand? :unsure:
 
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
GreatWhite, Bike was bought appr. 1000km used. Used by an old lady (appr 65 yrs) who owns Victory as well. Bought it (indian) Late May '18, sold it after a month. Too heavy for her.
Nothing was done for the bike. No reason for it.

Chief-Michel. We we riding, just turned to an other road, were accelerating, then came the noise. He left the gas off, and stopped to a suitable place, with the speed, he had.
I went back to see, what was there on the road, but saw nothing. After a while, we decided to continue, but Chieftain didn't move - it made some funny noise only, which came from the loose belt.
That part fell off at that moment - was laying somewhere, but weren't on the road just a moment ago when we were checking the situation.
Bike was appr 130km away from home, he was riding two on it. Just in case, You think that it was broken in some garage..?? (Then rode away from there to get it on the towing truck, which took it directly to the dealer?? ) There's still no other reason to open rear end than this. I'm not fully following You Michel.

As I told, nobody, since it was built, has touched to the rear end - or actually anywhere. There's no reason for that, it's under warranty.
 

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A used bike, 2 owners and the OP is just a friend of the current owner...correct? Now if that's the case (hard to follow), that makes it more difficult to know what may have ever happend to the bike while owned with the 1st owner, who is a 65 y/o lady. Got it.
 

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Wow! Never seen that with out a crash.. that said, Ya, hard to determine what that would be from here. But my money would be on a previous owner hitting something or crashing.. or, bad casting.
Either way, its under warranty right? If so, it will be dealt with .
Glad there were no Injuries.
 

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Lucky you could stay on the bike and stopped it. Hoping the Indian dealer will fix it without cost for you. Looks like a manufactory fault or material fault.
OMG.jpg
 

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Sounds like the bike may have been hit. It's like classic cars, once you drill down, you find out things that were never spoken about once you strip them down. Good luck on the repair.
Post what happens.
 
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