I wanted to run this by you guys, and see if my thoughts are the same as yours.
2008 XT, with 2010 rear wheel. 49300 miles on the odometer. Hero Blue of course.
As of late I've had a weird high pitched squeak noise coming from the bike, progressively getting worse and worse, but not bad enough for me to be able to find it. Previously I would hear it riding around town, an occasional chirp while riding around at lower speeds (below fan-on speed), and I was able to reproduce it coasting engine off downhill.
Now it has gotten much worse and I can hear it pushing the bike around. I put the bike on a rear stand, and moving the wheel either forward or backwards will make the noises, but I'm still not 100% sure where it is coming from. I can feel the noise in the belt as I rotate the rear wheel. The idler pulley has a small amount of play in it, making me suspect the bearings, and I also see a small rust trail coming out the center of it.
Can this be attacked without touching the rear axle? Like simply remove that torx screw going through the center of the bearing? If that can be done without much effort, I'll swap with the one on my 06 then get this repaired at my leisure.
Knowing my luck I'll have the stuck bearings that don't come out so I'll just throw the tensioner at a dealer once I get it out. Looks like it might not be something I can cheat and get away without loosening the axle.
Hugh that was my plan, but the problem is my other XBs are not stored in the same area code as this one, so it would be a bit of a back and forth to get it done, but not impossible. My local dealer has one on order and will have it in tomorrow, so I'll be able to throw it on this weekend and be all ready for BITA, assuming nothing else falls off.
I got the new tensioner, it will go on tonight once it cools down outside.
For your entertainment I tried to get to the bearings on the old one but have not succeeded. I can't get the torx bolt going through the center to loosen, so I tried just prying up the seal and I can't get that to budge either.