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"KRS/GT" Technical Q&A K1200RS/GT Technical Questions/Answers

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  #1  
Old 08-09-2018, 11:45 AM
Dark Horse Dark Horse is offline
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Oil usage mystery

Does anyone have any idea why it is that some of these bikes use ridiculous amounts of oil, and some do not? Adding a quart between changes isn't normal use except for vintage British cars.

Mine used 8oz in 185 miles last weekend. Filled to the dot before I left, stopped for fuel at 185, let it sit for a few, and it took 8oz to get back to the dot. At this point I have to carry a qt and a funnel to go on a day ride. This screws one of the main reasons I have any kind of bike at all: the "get lost thataway" weekend ride, since I have to worry about the oil level and check it.

Road type doesn't really seem to affect oil loss. I thought it did, but longer curves and
Throttle changes seem to have a more direct effect.
Other than the classic K startup smoke, I don't see any any smoke while riding, and I check the mirror pretty often.
The plugs are a little darker than the perfect light tan, but not that much darker. They're not oiled at all, and they're all the same. Plug brand makes no difference.
Oil type/brand make no difference. Rotella and Mobil1 vanish at about the same rate.
Every time I pull the airbox, I find oil in the throttle bodies. I've also found cottage cheese in the breather manifold.
Breather manifold is OE, and new. I build one out of kynar fittings and rubber tubing, but I changed it out when Velocity effects occurred to me.
I went through the intakes, flattened the manifolds, and sealed the leaks.
Ditching the K&N for a Mahle made no difference.
Changing the lambda sensor made no difference.
Compression is even across all four, and the plugs don't read worn Rings.

The only thing that makes sense to me at all is some combination of lean angle and trailing-throttle manifold vacuum. If that's the case, why some bikes and not all?
I've even considered a check valve somewhere in the breather hose, set to close when manifold vacuum increases sharply or gets too high.

My k751 uses no oil at all. Same roads, same speeds, same oil. I don't even bother checking the sight glass except for changes. The k12? I can't leave for a day without carrying oil. I can't even think of riding interstate on it.
On the day she used 8oz/185 miles? Between that fuel stop and home (~70mi),she didn't use any oil. Similar roads, similar speeds, maybe a little more relaxed but not that much.

Any ideas?
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  #2  
Old 08-09-2018, 12:01 PM
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OILHEAD OILHEAD is offline
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Re: Oil usage mystery

Try filling with a little less, like 300 to 500ml.
You cant damage the bike with so lttle missing, if you fill it just a little too much howeve, the extra quantity of oil sometimes finds its way some strange way...
Keep me posted
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  #3  
Old 08-09-2018, 12:21 PM
Dark Horse Dark Horse is offline
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Re: Oil usage mystery

I fill to the dot. I used to fill my k751 almost to the top of the glass, but I learned better.
I know the bottom-to-dot distance is 8oz, but I get VERY nervous when I can't see anything in the glass.
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Anything with two wheels.

1971 Honda CB350. Long gone
1973 Kawasaki S2 Mach II. Ridden to death.
1972 Yamaha XS650. Ridden to death.
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1987 K75/76/751. Old friend. Currently getting TLC.
1998 K1200RS. Barnstormer. New acquaintance.

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Old 08-09-2018, 03:07 PM
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Re: Oil usage mystery

My KRS never used a drop between 3500mile changes. And leaks? Smoking? Rings? How many miles on the beast?

Sum tin ain't right.
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  #5  
Old 08-09-2018, 06:00 PM
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Re: Oil usage mystery

68k, BMW syn or mobil1 all the days of it's life.
No smoke, xcept occasionally at startup.
No leaks.
Clean plugs.
Compression even across all four.
I would expect any engine burning that much oil to be its own mobile smog bank. But no.
It's used a good bit of oil since I got it 10k ago, but 8oz in 185 miles is ridiculous.
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1971 Honda CB350. Long gone
1973 Kawasaki S2 Mach II. Ridden to death.
1972 Yamaha XS650. Ridden to death.
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1987 K75/76/751. Old friend. Currently getting TLC.
1998 K1200RS. Barnstormer. New acquaintance.

& many, many bicycles.
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Old 08-09-2018, 06:19 PM
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Re: Oil usage mystery

Syn oils have been determined a Nono on the KRS due to damage to various seals including main seal....have you noticed any clutch slippage?
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04 k1200RS Zebra.Sold
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05 R1200GS...SOLD
06 K1200R..SOLD..so long!

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  #7  
Old 08-09-2018, 06:21 PM
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Re: Oil usage mystery

I thought there were several reports of loose valve guides and oil consumption past this.
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  #8  
Old 08-09-2018, 07:38 PM
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Re: Oil usage mystery

I have NO interest in restarting the neverending oil thread, but I don't recall the syn/dino debate as being settled. BMW certainly sells a lot of syn to K riders.

In any event, I checked my oil log, and I put 57oz of oil into the bike between 62k and 66k. At that point, I stopped keeping track. It's depressing.
Any leak that size would leave a trail you could see from orbit. Or an amazing smoke cloud, or more likely both. I don't see smoke in the exhaust, and she doesn't leak. Like at all. No clutch slippage.

The only thing that makes sense to me is that leaning the bike, combined with high manifold vacuum, pulls aerated oil into the breather manifold. I've certainly found enough oil in it.

What I wonder is if BMW changed the breathing arrangement somewhere along the line. Something like reshaping or redirecting the crankcase end of that steel tube that feeds the breather manifold. Or improved the sealing on the crankcase so that manifold vacuum doesn't pull Quite so much out of it. I wasn't kidding about trying a little check valve in the breather system.
The engine is one of the very early ones with the cold-cracked connecting rods, if anyone has seen a change log for those two versions.

This is old. I have this superbike with a touring problem, and I can't ride it the way I like to.
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Anything with two wheels.

1971 Honda CB350. Long gone
1973 Kawasaki S2 Mach II. Ridden to death.
1972 Yamaha XS650. Ridden to death.
1978 BMW R100RS. Foolishly sold.
1987 K75/76/751. Old friend. Currently getting TLC.
1998 K1200RS. Barnstormer. New acquaintance.

& many, many bicycles.
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  #9  
Old 08-09-2018, 09:38 PM
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Re: Oil usage mystery

Should be easy enough to determine if you have as much oil in the breather manifold as you are adding.

Oil shouldn't be whipped up as much as you are describing. The suggestion made above about running a little lower oil level may make sense if the oil level is somehow so high it is being churned by the crankshaft.

However, it sounds like you are using us as more of a sounding board for your ideas rather than taking any suggestions, so...
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Old 08-10-2018, 01:33 AM
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Re: Oil usage mystery

Out of interest have you had a look under the coolant cap? If there is oil there, then a blown gasket might be a contributing factor. Just thinking out loud as that much oil gotta be going somewhere.
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  #11  
Old 08-10-2018, 07:08 AM
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Re: Oil usage mystery

Quote:
Originally Posted by Flyboy
Syn oils have been determined a Nono on the KRS due to damage to various seals including main seal....have you noticed any clutch slippage?
This is not true. I've used synthetic since I had 10,000 miles on the bike. Never uses any oil after 17 years, and the main seal hasn't needed to be replaced.
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Old 08-10-2018, 07:49 AM
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Re: Oil usage mystery

My1997 Taxi used to use maybe half a pint every 1,000 miles but since switching to Castrol GTX 10w40, it doesn’t seem to use any . . . It’s done 58,000 miles now.

BTW, I always park it on the main stand.

Finding oil in the throttle bodies must be a major clue. - I’d bet you’re right in suspecting some kind of nefarious activity when off throttle, on the overrun . . .
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Old 08-10-2018, 09:38 AM
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Re: Oil usage mystery

A 98? BMW updated them motors the following year.Many of them seized up mainly at No1 conrod.Last one on here was a couple years ago.

Oil on the throttle plates?Study "blowback"....commonly used term in the industry.

High oil usage:bad for catalytic converters may plug them.And O2 sensor readings may be off so may not be fueling right because of that off reading.

I am getting close to 155k (miles) on my 03.No significant oil consumption.Topped to the brim right now with oil out of a 5 gal.bucket.Oil pressure is exactly where it was when I installed a gauge so long ago.Will probably need an oil change on the road in a couple weeks but very much doubt that I'll need to add any in the meantime.
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Old 08-10-2018, 12:00 PM
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Re: Oil usage mystery

Quote:
Originally Posted by pbegin@burton
A 98? BMW updated them motors the following year.Many of them seized up mainly at No1 conrod.Last one on here was a couple years ago.

Oil on the throttle plates?Study "blowback"....commonly used term in the industry.

High oil usage:bad for catalytic converters may plug them.And O2 sensor readings may be off so may not be fueling right because of that off reading.

I am getting close to 155k (miles) on my 03.No significant oil consumption.Topped to the brim right now with oil out of a 5 gal.bucket.Oil pressure is exactly where it was when I installed a gauge so long ago.Will probably need an oil change on the road in a couple weeks but very much doubt that I'll need to add any in the meantime.
DARN
If you buy oil in 5 gallons, you must use a lotttttttt
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Old 08-10-2018, 01:53 PM
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Re: Oil usage mystery

Quote:
Originally Posted by OILHEAD
DARN
If you buy oil in 5 gallons, you must use a lotttttttt
At my yearly milleage? 5-6 oil changes/season?And my Honda uses the same oil.
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Old 08-11-2018, 12:06 AM
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Re: Oil usage mystery

Yup..this be really a mystery..After about 2,500 mi to Laguna for WSB this past June..only had to "top up" the sight glass, say about an oz,-or-two over that many miles..this kind of consumption indicates what seems a "serious" problem. (Using Amsoil 20-50 V-Twin) if that matters....@ least my K "likes" it, yet who here really gives a scheit what I believe..???
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Old 08-11-2018, 11:01 AM
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Re: Oil usage mystery

Please refer to previous posts
DO NOT TOP UP! If the level is above the minimum, youre OK!
In all the years I fed my family selling lubes, Ive seen soooooo many times problems caused by too much oil
Besides, the 20W50 seems a little heavy
Relax
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Old 08-11-2018, 12:24 PM
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Re: Oil usage mystery

Bring your level down to between the dot and the bottom of the sight glass I bet you will find it will hold its level there.
These bikes have to sit on center stand for at least 10 min and almost perfectly level before you check it.
Most likely you are adding additional oil that is not needed and it is being brought up through the breather.
Pull your air housing and check for excessive oil. and check your breather hose, it sucks but they fail and it isn't an easy task, oil will puddle on the top of the block.
I find that just filling to 1/4 glass level stays at that level.
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Old 08-12-2018, 09:49 AM
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Re: Oil usage mystery

Quote:
Originally Posted by OILHEAD
Besides, the 20W50 seems a little heavy
Not too heavy and even recommended in the owner's manual for temps above freezing. I've used 20W/50 exclusively on my bike since 2001.

Please refer to previous post #11.
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Old 08-12-2018, 10:09 AM
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Re: Oil usage mystery

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick
Not too heavy and even recommended in the owner's manual for temps above freezing. I've used 20W/50 exclusively on my bike since 2001.

Please refer to previous post #11.
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