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

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View Poll Results: Have you had the dreaded rear main seal leak?
Yes, and I use dino oil. 37 9.41%
Yes, and I use synthetic oil. 44 11.20%
Yes, and I have used both dino & synthetic oil. 28 7.12%
No, and I use dino oil. 63 16.03%
No, and I use synthetic oil. 154 39.19%
No, and I have used both dino & synthetic oil. 35 8.91%
Yes, and I use dino/syn blended oil. 1 0.25%
No, and I use dino/syn blended oil. 14 3.56%
This thread is a waste of bandwidth. 17 4.33%
Voters: 393. You may not vote until 'registered'. Please go here: http://www.i-bmw.com/register.php

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  #61  
Old 05-14-2008, 03:52 PM
voxmagna voxmagna is offline
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Re: Engine seal leaks and engine braking?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BMW
Would excessive use of engine braking result in excessive o-ring heat and early break down?

When you engine brake, as long as the clutch isn't slipped I can't see that it would cause that problem. However if the clutch was worn, already contaminated with oil and slipping then engine braking could produce a lot of heat - but then the oil leak that follows is just telling you about your bad clutch. It's good practice to use the clutch like an 'on/off' switch with minimal hold in during shifting and at stops anyway. I've got 30K on my KRS and the shift is so smooth I hardly need the clutch. Certainly not for upshifts, and a quick 1/4" of the lever for downshifts.

Another theory on the clutch O ring seal is heat produced from the oem Cat converter underneath. I'm not sure I buy into that, because air is a bad conductor and the transmission shaft is a long way towards the seal for heat to get there across an air gap which is a bad conductor. However, regularly riding the temperature guage near redline, high oil temperature and the exhaust Cat when sat in slow city traffic probably doesn't help for any of the oil seals, especially with thin slippery oil.
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  #62  
Old 05-15-2008, 11:14 AM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Dry clutches build up way more heat when slipped/ridden than wet clutches. Stop and go traffic would be fertile ground for clutch and thus o-ring overheating.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cousi
I've wondered if the type of riding has something to do with seals going bad. Riding in traffic building heat vs open road, lots of air.
Maybe a poll with those options.
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  #63  
Old 05-15-2008, 03:31 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by BMW
Dry clutches build up way more heat when slipped/ridden than wet clutches. Stop and go traffic would be fertile ground for clutch and thus o-ring overheating.

Your own post seems to say otherwise.
http://www.i-bmw.com/showthread.php?t=15292

"The reason that race machines went to dry
clutches was to *improve* disengagement, reduce the amount of clutch
material infiltration into the lube system, and to allow cleaner, smoother
engagement through better cooling and less inter-plate stiction."

" Wet clutches when slipped expand more because they can't shed heat as
quickly, and the oil stiction masks the chattering of disk/plates as well
as some characteristics of overheating."
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  #64  
Old 05-15-2008, 05:47 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

What can I say.

The posted statement was based on information from a different source than the link.

So at this point I have two separate sources that say just the opposite.

Maybe you or someone else can dig into the topic and find some more/better information.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Polish Prince
Your own post seems to say otherwise.
http://www.i-bmw.com/showthread.php?t=15292

"The reason that race machines went to dry
clutches was to *improve* disengagement, reduce the amount of clutch
material infiltration into the lube system, and to allow cleaner, smoother
engagement through better cooling and less inter-plate stiction."

" Wet clutches when slipped expand more because they can't shed heat as
quickly, and the oil stiction masks the chattering of disk/plates as well
as some characteristics of overheating."
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  #65  
Old 05-15-2008, 05:56 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by BMW
Dry clutches build up way more heat when slipped/ridden than wet clutches. Stop and go traffic would be fertile ground for clutch and thus o-ring overheating.

this statement is not quite true

there is more than 1 type of dry clutch

there are several different types of engagement

no less there is the multi disc type
& the diaphram & Long engagement

the o ring overheating could be caused by a dozen other factors
not so much the type of clutch
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  #66  
Old 05-15-2008, 06:57 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by BMW
What can I say.

The posted statement was based on information from a different source than the link.

So at this point I have two separate sources that say just the opposite.

Maybe you or someone else can dig into the topic and find some more/better information.

OK....where is the source of your posted statement?
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  #67  
Old 05-21-2008, 07:26 AM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by Polish Prince
OK....where is the source of your posted statement?


"I read it on the INTERNET, so therefore it must be true"
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  #68  
Old 05-22-2008, 06:42 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by cousi
"I read it on the INTERNET, so therefore it must be true"

Or it must be false.
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  #69  
Old 05-23-2008, 02:33 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Just as I thought.....we should refrain from making statements that are not true and could mislead someone who is looking for real help to their problem....save the bullshit for you-tube.
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  #70  
Old 05-23-2008, 05:24 PM
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Question Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Don't know much about the different types of dry clutches.

It would seem though that an enclosed one would build up more heat if slipped than an open/ventilated one?

It would also seem that a dry clutch might have a higher coefficient of friction than one bathed in oil?

And if that were the case, would it be more difficult to slip a dry clutch?

And if slipped, would a dry clutch then produce more heat?

I guess the issue is not about the characteristics on a race bike on the track or on a touring bike on the interstate, but whether the BMW dry clutch can produce o-ring damaging heat if ridden/slipped in constant stop and go traffic?



Quote:
Originally Posted by Red Tail
this statement is not quite true

there is more than 1 type of dry clutch

there are several different types of engagement

no less there is the multi disc type
& the diaphragm & Long engagement

the o ring overheating could be caused by a dozen other factors
not so much the type of clutch
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  #71  
Old 08-02-2008, 03:46 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

its well known that many of the additives in multigrade oil

allows for reconstitution

overall.....the better the additives

the longer the interval obtained for consistent lubrication

some applications increase actual oil capacity to achieve good reconstitution

others use improved cooling

many both

reference made to the long chain polymers that are desirable

for their wear characteristics are also known to reconstitute very well

no.... they dont come back 100%

yet they do reconstitute and allow greater lubricity over a longer period

the apparaent advantage of a good synthetic over a good dino oil
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  #72  
Old 08-19-2008, 03:15 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by BMW
Dry clutches build up way more heat when slipped/ridden than wet clutches. Stop and go traffic would be fertile ground for clutch and thus o-ring overheating.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GT Pilot
Your own post seems to say otherwise.
http://www.i-bmw.com/showthread.php?t=15292

"The reason that race machines went to dry
clutches was to *improve* disengagement, reduce the amount of clutch
material infiltration into the lube system, and to allow cleaner, smoother
engagement through better cooling and less inter-plate stiction."

" Wet clutches when slipped expand more because they can't shed heat as
quickly, and the oil stiction masks the chattering of disk/plates as well
as some characteristics of overheating."

Another discussion from the Ducati site:

Dry versus Wet clutches:

To recap -

Wet clutch -
Advantages:
- Smoother engagement
- Less wear
- Tolerates slipping during take-off
- Cheaper to manufacture (i.e. inside engine less seals and covers)
- Quiet operation (noise dampened by both oil and engine cases)
- Cooled by engine oil
Disadvantages:
- Clutch debris mixed in engine oil (oil filter takes care of this)
- Rotating clutch in oil bath causes drag on engine (some loss in HP to rear wheel)
- Oil needs to be specially formulated for clutch presence

Dry clutch -
Advantages:
- Clutch easier to work on (ideal in racing applications)
- No loss in HP due to clutch rotating in oil bath (biggest reason why racers use them)
- Can use friction modifieid oils in engine
Disadvantages:
- Tends to grab during engagement (making take-offs difficult)
- Slipping during take-off overheats clutch easily causing excessive wear and also tends to make clutch operation less progressive.
- Shorter operational life (very user dependent)
- Once hot very difficult to cool - especially if no open clutch cover
- Can be very noisy (exacerbated by using open clutch covers)
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  #73  
Old 10-04-2008, 02:55 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick
Elaborate please, James. You think they're not related?
Of course they are not related! That is pretty obvious. Synthetic oil is no more or no less slippery than good quality dino oil. Synth just lasts longer, permitting longer time between oil changes.
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  #74  
Old 10-04-2008, 06:48 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Why is changing oils more often not a good thing to remove particles and contaminants which are bad for seals?

That should be the first question to discuss, then I don't think it matters which oil you choose and the only difference I can see is the cost.

If engine wear worries you, then how many riders have mic'd their bores after 70K and complained about bore wear? After all, it is the cylinder bores and pistons that will show up poor lubrication and wear first.

Cost of ownership will not be affected much by running the more expensive synth oil longer because there are too many other things on the service list to be done at 6K.

So what do you win running a synth. oil to 8K+?

Most cars have had dry clutches for years. Their engines run on just about any oil you put in them, will do 100K+ miles on a clutch, oil changes at 12K+ and no leaks like on these Beemers.

I doubt if changing oil type will solve our problem, oil leaks, seals and O rings are a design issue.
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  #75  
Old 10-05-2008, 07:11 AM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by voxmagna
Why is changing oils more often not a good thing to remove particles and contaminants which are bad for seals?

I doubt if changing oil type will solve our problem, oil leaks, seals and O rings are a design issue.

Changing oil too often can expose some components to excessive additives... Some medicine is good but more can be harmful.

Contrary to what is often written online, there can be very significant differences from one lube to the other that are not immediately evident when pouring it in.
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  #76  
Old 10-05-2008, 03:14 PM
voxmagna voxmagna is offline
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Serious engine failure seems to be unusual on K motors which I assume is due to their not so high piston speeds compared to many other bikes that sound like high speed sewing machines.

I did some measurements on crank journals and bores at 36 K and couldn't measure any significant wear to worry about and I change engine oil about every 4K. I also looked for scoring on the piston thrust faces too. Apart from some fine abrasions, they were all clean. Similarly I saw very little 'sludge' collected in corners of the oil sump. The plastic cam chain tensioners also looked smooth and with little wear. The valve bucket shims were all nicely polished and shiney, with none needing to be adjusted.

You can really only tell if an oil regime works by getting serious engine failure or measuring components. Reading what's on the carton doesn't mean a lot since most modern oils meeting minimum standards should give no problem running in lower tech. engines designed for road use.

Given the choice, on my bike I'd rather have a cooler running motor with lower oil temperatures than worry about oil brands.
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  #77  
Old 10-05-2008, 04:05 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by Turbocohen
Changing oil too often can expose some components to excessive additives...
I see no basis for that at all.

Are you saying that it is a good thing that whatever additives you are worried about, are present in dangerous amounts in new oil, and get worn out over time? Sounds pretty fishy to me!
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  #78  
Old 10-05-2008, 05:10 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by RFW
I see no basis for that at all.

Are you saying that it is a good thing that whatever additives you are worried about, are present in dangerous amounts in new oil, and get worn out over time? Sounds pretty fishy to me!
I agree with Bob! I call B.S. The more you change your oil the better off your motor will be. Particularly when it is new and is shedding bits of transmission gear teeth and bits of clutch plate. Which is the case with the new generation of k bikes. Spend the extra money after it's broken in on synthetic. It's worth it! While your at it check out the independent magazine articles on the Royal Purple web site.
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  #79  
Old 11-15-2008, 06:16 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by biff
The more you change your oil the better off your motor will be. Particularly when it is new and is shedding bits of transmission gear teeth and bits of clutch plate.


But the engine, clutch and tranny are seperate. Unless you have a rice burner???


Quote:
Originally Posted by biff
It's worth it! While your at it check out the independent magazine articles on the Royal Purple web site.

Oh no, not Royal Purple again!
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  #80  
Old 12-29-2008, 05:25 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

those long chain polymers reconstitute in the sump of most trannys

& final drives

after they wear out............essentially cease to reconstitute

or the oil becomes contaminated [or both]

its time to change

having enuf to reconstitute is essential & represents the extra in the sump

which also allows cooling while other oil is working

thats a seriously small sump in the final drive of most bmw motos

what .6 of a quart [a concern]

a little more might help
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  #81  
Old 07-04-2009, 01:49 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Yee old oil debate. I'll preface my opinion with this first; I am a dealer in one way and one way only-to receive the discounts and pass it on to all who buy these oils with me. I "charge" the same price discount I receive as a "dealer" + shipping to friends who want it. I don't want the taxation/IRS headaches.

Amsoil synthetics; "20W50 Racing" in an R11GSA from 20K-50K when I sold it. Yes, I did actually race it in CCS Am. competition. No leaks. Before the racing I would change that engine oil every 10K miles or @ the end of the season with their 75W140 Synth. gear Lubes in the GB and the FD-no leaks there either, or FD failures. Now I know the gear box and FD changes were overkill-lifetime fill, BUT if you feel better changeing it every year or 5K miles, fantastic.

I've had not leaks using the A-oil in BMWs-R11GSA, K100LT, F650GS, K100RS...
Other bikes either-GSXR 1000 (race), GSXR750 (race), RC51 (race), KTM 950 ADV., (2) Buell S3Ts, Ducati 900 SS/SL replica, XR650R, and no problems with their 2-stroke 50:1 mix in the CR500R or the CR250R or the chainsaws.

The xperiment now is trying their 15w-40 Marine and Diesel oils, in the bikes, as it is just $58 + shipping for 2.5 gallons. Use it in the Powerstroke for 25K miles and figure it's good to go in the bikes too. No leaks in the SDPowerstroke either. .02 cents.

Not intended as spam; I am NOT looking for sellers or buyers.
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  #82  
Old 07-05-2009, 05:00 AM
voxmagna voxmagna is offline
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

I seem to remember the leak debate has been when an older bike has grown up with dyno then has synth put in.

There are too many variables to say the real problem is oil, but there have been quite a few posts here suggesting bad things can happen. Seal designs have evolved and seals could have been at the near point of failing when an oil switch was made - who knows?

I agree that frequent oil changes are good, it helps remove any metal wear particles which otherwise mince away at seals - particularly in tranni's and RD's. They use so little oil that it seems a no brainer to not change and check what comes out every main oil change.

I used a turbo diesel oil once for a 6K change when I ran out of the regular stuff. I can't say I noticed any difference and there were no seal leaks on a 35K motor. Virtually all motor oils meet the minimum spec of the most basic dyno oil so I can't see engine wear between types being a big issue.

I think people want synth oils to get more mileage between oil changes. But with small oil volumes and high temperature running, I personally think you do just as well using the cheapest oil and changing it more often. Credible evidence of oil types and brands really only comes from lab analysis of engine parts run under simulated use conditions. I've dismantled engines run on the best oils of the day changed at dealer intervals, and engines run with cheapest oils and more frequent changes. I've seen hardly any cylinder bore or camshaft lobe scuffing where engine oils have been changed frequently. That's not conclusive but helps me make my decision. Racing is a totally different ball game where I guess you need the edge on oils to cope with much higher engine stresses not found for street bike riding.

Whilst the marketing machine is promoting synth oils and people are buying it, the price of dyno should get lower so that's good for me. Most BMW K-bikes are not at the cutting edge of engine design eeking out the last horsepower. Run on a decent oil we should expect a high mileage life. I think seal failures are fundamentally an engine and seal design issue, not just oil related. I've had old cars with similar seals running 150-200K miles that don't have this clutch/main engine seal problem.
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  #83  
Old 11-25-2009, 11:07 AM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Bump for the newbies
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  #84  
Old 11-27-2009, 06:59 AM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

The debate, in my opinion, should be around heat and o-ring life. I have been riding for 23+ years, and have mainly used dino-type engine oils. Over the past 6 years, however, I was using an expensive oil called Motul E-Tech 100. An excellent Ester/PAO based engine oil. The main reason for spending $15 per litre versus $5 per litre was fear. I bought into the marketing machine promoting motorcycle specific synthetic oils as being better than conventional dino oils. I just decided to spend an extra $30-35 every 6 months for peace of mind. The only improvement I saw with the synthetic oil was slightly, but consistently, lower engine operating temperature. Of course, up to the RS, every bike I owned had an integrated transmission, and in most cases, had higher rpm motors.

When I purchased my '01 RS, I was told in NO UNCERTAIN TERMS, by my dealer's service team, NOT to use synthetic oil in the brick engine. Why? I don't know and don't really care. My RS has been exclusively run on BMW brand dino oil since new and shows absolutely no sign of any oil leak, with the exception of a very minor amount of film on the timing chain cover, in a small 1 centimetre area where the 3 cases meet -- of course the timing chain cover oil leak problem that is so common with the RS/GT/LT is a design issue, though I'm sure heat will also exacerbate the problem there!

So for now, its BMW dino oil changed out every 6000 kilometres (every 5000 kilometres if used for alot of stop 'n go situations)

I live here in Canada (southern Ontario), where we have hot, but short summers, and the rest of the year is basically unpleasant. I think our short riding season, coupled with overall MODERATE temperatures, may lend itself to longer o-ring/seal life. But, I think the greatest factor leading to RS/GT o-ring life is how well we're managing the engine/transmission average operating temperatures.
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  #85  
Old 11-27-2009, 10:48 AM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

.............which is why I have 2 extra fans and my temperature gauge in the hottest UK Summer when I'm in city traffic only goes a needle width over 1/2 way. Since doing the mod I've never had the gauge anywhere near the red line.

Unfortunately, it will take me 10 years and another teardown to tell you if that improves the clutch O ring life. By then I may not be around to post! Of course being a straight honest guy prepared to say when something hasn't worked, I'll tell you sooner if I find the dreaded oil leak or the new clutch is slipping.

If my theory on engine/transmission temperature is with merit, those that do more city miles and have their temp gauges near the red should get the oil leaks which could be made worse by lots of soggy clutch use and holdins at stops. My clutch when I use it is either on or off, I avoid the part clutch as much as possible.

Been running Dyno oil, change at 5K and always will use it whilst it's the cheapest.
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  #86  
Old 11-28-2009, 01:57 AM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

I do not think it is the syn or dyno oil that makes the seal hard. Just a bad choice of O ring.

But, my 02 leaked oil at 35,000 miles 2 1/2 years old with Dyno oil and bike lived in moderate temp. did not spend too much time in SW desert.

My 04 had NO leak at tear down for wasted clutch at 37,000 miles 4 1/2 years with Syn oil. O ring was hard but not leaking.
This bike is always in SW desert heat.

I ride it like I stole it. never use the clutch to shift up or down. Just at stops.

But the double clutch wheelies did in the clutch at an early age. I would roll the bike to 10mph then pull the clutch and rev the engine, then dump the clutch and up it went.
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Old 12-04-2009, 04:01 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

The clutch 'O' ring is the same type as used in most other places on the bike in contact with engine lubricant and they don't fail like this.

When it comes out hard and breaks up in your hands there must be a different situation in this particular location to cause the failure.

The 'O' ring on my clutch was not leaking at 36K and there was no oil on the clutch side, yet it was still dry and brittle as a bone.

My money is on temperature, elevated by clutch use with oil type playing a part.

Anybody measured Summer engine oil temperatures yet when the temperature gauge is siting in the red? That flimsy oil cooler won't be doing much when the bike is shunting about in city traffic at 10-20 mph.

I don't think an 'O' ring is the right profile to use. There is no rotation to seal. I think this component should be cylindrical cross section, able to compress to seal and handle high temperatures. The best profile would be a short length cut from a tube/hose with the correct outside and inside diameters. The standard 'O' rings go to about 120 deg C, whereas Viton should be good for 327 deg C. That's why using Viton here is a good idea. If I went into my clutch again I'd try source some Viton hose/tube, cut a piece off and fit that cross section.
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Old 12-24-2009, 07:05 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by voxmagna
I don't think an 'O' ring is the right profile to use. There is no rotation to seal. I think this component should be cylindrical cross section, able to compress to seal and handle high temperatures.
There is nothing at all wrong with a normal circular-section O-ring here. It makes no difference what shape it is.... if it is cooked to the point of brittleness, no shape will seal. On the other hand, as long as the standard O-ring remains pliable, it seals perfectly well.

Clearly, the only problem is heat-related degradation and embrittlment. Fix that (using a viton O-ring as you were the first to suggest several years ago), and you have entirely fixed the problem.

It also has nothing to do with oil type, in my opinion. My old K100RT which has never been close to any synthetic oil, had an oil leak when I bought it 6 years ago. The O-ring was totally cooked. Broke into pieces when I tried to remove it. I just replaced it 6 years and 60,000km ago with the standard BMW butyl O-ring. I just finished disassembling and reassembling the motor for the new owner (son of a friend), and strangely, the butyl O-ring I replaced 6 years ago is STILL in good shape.... perfectly flexible and seals perfectly.

Anyway, the oil (whether synth, or dino, or even melted whale blubber), has no effect on other, identical butyl seals in the motor, so how could the type of oil magically affect only this particular seal. Answer: There is no magic. It cannot!

So it appears that this heat-embrittling of this O-ring has some connection with clutch-generated heat, perhaps made worse by excess clutch slippage.

Whatever it is, it isn't caused by synthetic oil.
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Last edited by RFW : 12-25-2009 at 12:04 AM.
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Old 04-13-2010, 04:07 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

bump
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Old 04-13-2010, 05:05 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

yawn
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Old 06-07-2010, 06:31 AM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Unless BMW has started shipping the bikes with synthetic oil everyone who has switched has used both, and the synthetic only is a false choice in the poll. Back in 2008 my GT, and all BMW's shipped with dino has that changed?
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Old 06-13-2010, 07:26 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by Northsquad
Unless BMW has started shipping the bikes with synthetic oil everyone who has switched has used both, and the synthetic only is a false choice in the poll. Back in 2008 my GT, and all BMW's shipped with dino has that changed?
This entire discussion is pointless, because almost all oil labeled as "synthetic" or "full synthetic" that is sold in North America, is made from Group III hydroisomerized Dino feed stock. So claiming that there is a problem with this or that "synthetic" oil, makes no sense because with very few exceptions, the oil in question isn't synthetic in the first place.
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Old 06-13-2010, 07:49 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by RFW
This entire discussion is pointless, because almost all oil labeled as "synthetic" or "full synthetic" that is sold in North America, is made from Group III hydroisomerized Dino feed stock. So claiming that there is a problem with this or that "synthetic" oil, makes no sense because with very few exceptions, the oil in question isn't synthetic in the first place.

Bob, please define "hydroisomerized Dino feed stock"
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Old 06-13-2010, 10:55 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by MotomanK12
Bob, please define "hydroisomerized Dino feed stock"
Hydroisomerization is a reltively new process in treatment of the distillation fraction of crude oil used as a starting point for making motor oils. Oils created by this process are called Group III oils and rival true synthetics (Group IV) in performance. The previous process called Hydrocracking produced mineral oil base stock referred to as Group II oils.

Mineral oils have come a very long way since the original Solvent Dewaxing process of the '50s and '60s. The hydroisomerization process invented by Standard Oil and first commercialized in the early 1990s is now used by nearly all oil companies and results in a vastly improved motor oil compared to only 20 years ago.
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Old 06-14-2010, 12:21 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by RFW
This entire discussion is pointless, because almost all oil labeled as "synthetic" or "full synthetic" that is sold in North America, is made from Group III hydroisomerized Dino feed stock. So claiming that there is a problem with this or that "synthetic" oil, makes no sense because with very few exceptions, the oil in question isn't synthetic in the first place.


Agreed, besides I don't see any reason either stock should cause leaks
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Old 07-25-2011, 03:56 AM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by voxmagna
I agree with the condition you found your seals, mine were the same on my '97 BUT not leaking at 36K miles. The clutch O ring is a slightly different case, because clutches can get very hot if worked hard and this heat combined with high oil temperatures will harden the O ring more quickly. Some people put synth in their transmissions and rear drives (??) and you don't hear so much about those seals failing, yet they are doing similar revolutions. The clutch O ring seals in an unusual way. Most O rings suffer only about 10% compression to seal so the honecomb rubber core retains elasticity. The clutch O ring is compressed to hell by the clutch nut so much that it changes shape from a round to square cross section.

However, I still think the true cause of seal failures on K-bikes (when car seals can go 100-200k) is the high and sometimes over high engine running temperatures. I don't believe it's just down to synth or non-synth oil, even though putting it in after many miles without a leak seems to cause one. The seals are shot due to excessive temperature cycling before the synth goes in!

The oil companies will claim compatibility for both Dyno and Synth, provided the oils are running in their specified temperature range. But we don't know if Buna-N seals lose their elasticity faster in a synth oil running at higher than spec temperatures, compared to the same situation for a dyno oil. Temperature and chemical activity are the main causes of changes to the properties of elastomers used in seals.

If solutions were found to lower oil temperatures by better design of the cooling system, then I suspect seal failures on these bikes would decrease.

I'm just wondering about riding style? I read I'm not sure if it were here or not but someone recomended never to shift their transmission into neutral. Their reasoning of course was based on safety reasons, that guy barreling up from behind them they could out accelerate that psycopath bearing down on them trying to run them down, (believe it or not this was a Police officer's reasoning) or should I say paranoia. I used to own an old Montessa dirt bike and when I first got it I was constantly using the clutch, until it started slipping all the time. I found that using the clutch to shift and when stopped, would overheat this (oil bath ) clutch post haste. After a short while I got in the habit of always shifting to neutral when ever I stopped for more than a second or two and would rarely use the clutch at all. I haven't driven that many BMW's but the few I have seemed to crash shift quite nicely. I don't know if this will prematurely wear out the syncros or not but It might prevent seals from over heating and getting hard and brittle?
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Old 07-25-2011, 08:35 AM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

When you buy a used bike like I did with miles on the odo, it is not always possible to know how the bike may have been ridden. But I do know it had dyno in it and there were no seal leaks. Remember to distinguish between oil leaks from the cooked clutch O ring and leaks that may come from the large engine seal.

However the cooked clutch O ring was definitely at the point of trouble ahead if I had not dug in and changed it.

I have always shifted into neutral. All clutches will have some drag and drag means heat. I can think of a few scenarios:

I'm pulled up behind a car with say 10 feet in front to their fender and the clutch in. The unexpected happens behind and I get a big jolt which takes my hand off the clutch. Not only do I have the momentum from the rear shunt, but the K bike is now powering forwards in 1st gear. Then hits the rear fender in front harder, tip me over with the engine still running, gas all over the place as there is no tilt switch cutoff and I'm cremated, saving the funeral bills.

I'm sat in the same position but holding in the clutch and heating it up. Then I get the rear shunt from behind. but the clutch lever gets released and instead of my body taking all the shock, the bike is being engine braked so I might have time to get the brakes on, get rear damage but no front damage as I stopped just before the fender in front.

I'm in the same position but the bike is in neutral and the rear shunt happens unexpectedly. Should I have had the brakes hard on and have the impact go through my torso or should I have sacrificed the bike using its front wheel and forks to crumple up and take the momentum from the bike and torso more progressively?

I can't see much difference in the safety area, but I can see benefits in having decent rear stop lights and putting the bike in neutral to extend clutch life and an expensive teardown.
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Old 07-25-2011, 12:56 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

I shift into neutral.....but only when I feel safe to do so. The sound of squealing brakes behind me, very quick mirror check , let the clutch go and move aside just to see that big american car occupying my former spot at the light.....! In neutral he would have pushed me into the intersection so fast, and then I would probably have been hit by the cars coming the other way.

That was my 85 K100RS, and yes the O-ring eventually failed, but still cheaper than my safety.This 03 RS, I replaced the non-leaking O-ring at 45,000 Kms, it was certainly showing signs of degradation on the clutch side, but that was a former "City Bike", not anymore.....! Replaced with Viton and glad for it when I got stuck in some "Post Obama's Visit" kind of traffic somewhere in Maine, had to clutch so much I could barely close my hand after a while.

So...in neutral when I feel safe, in gear if I think I may have to escape quick.
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Old 08-09-2011, 12:58 PM
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Smile Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by voxmagna
If I was a betting man and could put an hour meter on a bikes fans from new, I'd bet bikes with the longest 'fans on' average per kilometer ridden will give the worst seal problems.

Interesting.
I communicated with the guy I believe is in the UK. He designed a elect panel and added 2 fans to the system making the fans cut in earlier. Said his temp never went over center line after that. All sounded great for a longer trouble free ride.

I was trying to get enough info to do the same in CO / USA, but ran into a snag on finding the right fan size and out put(I was going to try to find a elect guy around here to build the circuit board for me using his diagram). Seems the fans he directed me to were not imported to the USA(I recall calling the company). In any event I stalled on the change over and now don't know where I put the data. What to buy to build the elect board, or what fan to look for again. I have messed up - that is if the fans are available now here and somone around here would biuild the circuit for me (I would have trouble even describeing to the sales guy what I wanted).

I have to say that cutting the heat generated, to me, sounds right. I wonder if he has ever had seal problems after doing all of that.
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Old 08-15-2011, 07:10 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

I have had no seal problems since I wrote up my mod. around August 2008. My temperature gauge never gets further than a needle width above half way sitting in stalled Summer traffic. I rarely see any coolant moving back and forth into the reservoir because the coolant is soooo coool.

All four fans and controller are still running as good as the day I put them in - fit and forget, automatic with no handlebar switches to mess around with. I've had a small problem with one fan needing bug cleaning after 3 years, which might make me re-think putting the fans reverse way around, but with air flow still in the same direction front to rear. That loses some efficiency, but the motors would be better shielded from the onslaught of bugs and muck.

Yes, I understand SPAL dropped that (ideal) size fan from their sales brochure and I've not checked recently if it came back in or not. However, their distributor told me they would do batches to order of around 10-20 on special order and they are not expensive. You would probably need 3 to keep one as a spare so that doesn't need many takers. In the end I think I helped somebody find a UK reseller who was buying these in lots of 10 and had some on the shelf.

Since I'm a happy bunny with the best cooled K-Bike on the planet and I did all the work a while ago, my memory and enthusiasm to do more has decreased.
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Old 08-16-2011, 10:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by voxmagna
I have had no seal problems since I wrote up my mod. around August 2008. My temperature gauge never gets further than a needle width above half way sitting in stalled Summer traffic. I rarely see any coolant moving back and forth into the reservoir because the coolant is soooo coool.

All four fans and controller are still running as good as the day I put them in - fit and forget, automatic with no handlebar switches to mess around with. I've had a small problem with one fan needing bug cleaning after 3 years, which might make me re-think putting the fans reverse way around, but with air flow still in the same direction front to rear. That loses some efficiency, but the motors would be better shielded from the onslaught of bugs and muck.

Yes, I understand SPAL dropped that (ideal) size fan from their sales brochure and I've not checked recently if it came back in or not. However, their distributor told me they would do batches to order of around 10-20 on special order and they are not expensive. You would probably need 3 to keep one as a spare so that doesn't need many takers. In the end I think I helped somebody find a UK reseller who was buying these in lots of 10 and had some on the shelf.

Since I'm a happy bunny with the best cooled K-Bike on the planet and I did all the work a while ago, my memory and enthusiasm to do more has decreased.

OK guys,
this still sounds like a good deal to keep things from cooking. Even if the extra fans were just controlled with a handlebar switch.

I am in if the fans can be found.

Anybody else want to work on finding the dealer Vox is mentioning that may have some on the shielf? You can ping me, whatever. But I would be in for 3.
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Old 10-30-2011, 07:51 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by marcphillips
Any feedback on what seal replacement costs at the dealership? I may need to start a new BMW IRA.
I have replaced lots of seals and it has nothing to do with what kind of oil your using. Do it your self! Easy job.
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Old 10-31-2011, 07:10 AM
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Re: The news on fans is good

As time has moved on, the fans I originally used have now come into stock again in UK. Well I never thought SPAL would just ditch them anyway, they just put a minimum stock holding of 20 units on their suppliers.

The Fan part I used was:

SPAL VA69-A101-87S

The UK main seller is: SPAL AUTOMOTIVE (UK) LIMITED (not sure if they do export). They have 30 fans sitting on the shelf. Contact is Brian

Unit 3 Great Western Business Park McKenzie Way Worcester WORCESTERSHIRE WR4 9PT United Kingdom
Phone: 01905 613714
Fax: 01905 610725
Email: sales [at] spalautomotive [dot] co [dot] uk

Website: http://www.spalautomotive.co.uk/acatalog/info.html

They are also in the USA, but you will have to check stock or ask if they have resellers with stock: http://www.spalusa.com/

The UK price is £71.65. They've gone up a bit in price, but nothing compared to paying for BMW parts. I think if you could buy a few on a group buy, you might get their price down.

That's all I'm doing for you now! Have a nice day, Vox
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Old 10-31-2011, 10:03 AM
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Re: The news on fans is good

Quote:
Originally Posted by voxmagna
The Fan part I used was:

SPAL VA69-A101-87S

Website: http://www.spalautomotive.co.uk/acatalog/info.html

OK, Here's what I found on the USA website- The part numbers aren't the same, but this one is the closest in Amp rating, weight,etc...

http://www.spalusa.com/store/main.as...&item=30103009

$74.95 USA. I'll see if I can get more information from them

Chris
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Old 10-31-2011, 12:51 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Be careful with alternative part numbers. Because the fans are mounted on the front face of each radiator and are pulling air through in the direction of my red arrow. That link you posted is for their smaller 4" fan. Mine are 115mm and I think their 4 fixing holes just about clear the rad. tubes - the fan frame fits the BMW radiator width perfectly. The 4" fans will give more noise (chainsaw whine!). Somewhere, I got hold of their motor rpms and the 4" are running faster. I just found their full fan list. I'll include it here, although it might be secret! I also have their airflow rates. You can tell just comparing motor currents that the 115mm fan is the business for moving a lot of air. Also remember that fans like these work over a limited range of static pressure. That effectively is the difference between running it in free air and having some partial obstruction like the radiator fins and the poor void space which the fan air will spill into.

That's opposite to the way most automotive fans would work mounted on the rear surface of a radiator, like the BMW OEMs. The air direction is the 87S code in the part number and is BLOWING according to their naming convention. The rotation of these fans can be reversed just by switching the power leads, but it's not recomended because they are backward curve blade design and a lot of airflow will be lost.

Just in case SPAL spot it in my label photo, I cut the plastic front guard off mine to get max airflow, but to be honest there's so much air I would leave it on as it comes.
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  #106  
Old 11-30-2011, 07:58 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

I just bought a 2004 K1200gt with 18k on the clock so I cannot speak for that model but the following is my experience with synthetic oils.

I've used Mobil-1 in my R1150-rt, 1977 XLCH, 2 Honda Accords, 1 M-B 240-d, 1990 twin-turbo 300 ZX, 1965 Mustang with a 400+ hp 8,000 rpm small-blcok, 1987 Sable 1995 Z/28 (standard factory oil), turbo-AWD Talon and a Grand Cherokee. The XLCH has 200,000 on it and the 240-d had 340,000, the Talon 150,000, and the Z/28 175,000 when I sold it. The only one of them that lost a rear main seal was the 300-ZX....at 130,000 miles.

I fail to see the 'connection'.
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Old 11-30-2011, 08:04 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by RFW
Absolute nonsense. The rate of flow is governed by the oil pump alone unless the filter is so plugged that the relief valve opens.

The oil pump is a positive displacement pump. Come hell or highwater, it pumps a specific volume of oil for each revolution. You cannot reduce its "flow". All that happens is that when the filter starts to get plugged, the pump pressure rises to whatever it takes to get that oil through the filter. Eventually, the pressure rises sufficiently to open the relief valve. But through all of this, the "flow" of oil remains the same.


Absolutely, positively correct.
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Old 11-30-2011, 08:15 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by BMW
Don't know much about the different types of dry clutches.

It would seem though that an enclosed one would build up more heat if slipped than an open/ventilated one?

It would also seem that a dry clutch might have a higher coefficient of friction than one bathed in oil?

And if that were the case, would it be more difficult to slip a dry clutch?

And if slipped, would a dry clutch then produce more heat?

I guess the issue is not about the characteristics on a race bike on the track or on a touring bike on the interstate, but whether the BMW dry clutch can produce o-ring damaging heat if ridden/slipped in constant stop and go traffic?


Go to RB racing for ALL you will ever need to know about a clutch.

A dry plate clutch has a MUCH higher c/f than a wet....but a wet clutch is a wet clutch because the oil cools the clutch....and a slipped dry clutch most definetely produces huge amounts of heat. Back before the Center-Force was introduced you had a Saturday-night special semi-metallic clutch that you could launch like hell and power shift at 10k but could not slip it for one micro second without glazing the surface and causing it to chatter hard enough to break a ring/pinion in some extreme cases. We would install the semi-metallic on Saturday afternoon and replace it with the asbestos street unit on Sunday so we could drive to work on Monday without killing the Hot set-up.

Thank God for Bill Hays and the Center-force!!!!
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Old 12-04-2011, 06:05 AM
voxmagna voxmagna is offline
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

In my humble opinion, using the clutch as little as posible is a win-win all ways around. I'm a city rider so I have the hardest job. Here's how I do it:

1. I never sit at stops holding in the clutch. I keep the clutch disengaged as much as possible. I can still beat pretty much every cage away from the stop line, even shifting into first from neutral.

2. I try to master clutchless shifts, at least on the up shifts which is a lot easier.

3. Know your clutch. If it is good, balanced and not distorted there will be minimal drag. That means you should be able to pull in the lever no more than about an inch at the lever and shift without problems. As you get better at the clutchless upshifts, you will be making that clutch pull less and less until it just becomes psychological that you are pulling on the lever, when you aren't acually releasing the clutch.

4. I make the clutch action as quick as possible at the right point, so it spends as little time as possible disengaged.

5. Even if you are thrashing the bike hard in the high rpm, after practising clutchless shifting you will learn the best point to make the shift when the engine and road wheel rpm are matched - that's the point of least clutch wear and heat build up.

6. I anticipate stops more and use engine braking by working down through the shifts in equal measure until finally hitting neutral.

7. Know when your clutch may start to drag or slip. There's a very steep curve after this point to an over heated burned out clutch and O ring failure

Note that none of this will win you any races because it is a slower process. But if you take a bit more time shifting most of the time and keep the 'spirit' limited to fewer occasions, you will get less clutch wear, less brake wear and less tire wear. These bikes are very heavy with compact motors capable of producing high power through the transmission and the tires which also has to be absorbed when the bike is slowed.
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  #110  
Old 01-13-2012, 06:43 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick
Let's make it anecdotal then.
Please vote, then reply with your anecdotes.


maybe anecdotal yet laden with facts

any multi viscosity oil has some elements & properties of

' synthetic oils '

multi vis are NOT formulated with a few ounces of 5 weight...then 10 weight then

......20 weight etc

they are constituted with ' polymers ' !!!!! 'Synthetics ' ! !

there are 2 distinct types .......parafin[ wax] & ester

no less there are other components that relate directly to lubricity

that many trhink is directly related to ' leaks '

[ viscosity nor lubricity have NEVER been associated with leaks ]

the rationale is if its slicker or more slippery

it certainly must leak easier

so far there has NOT been substantiated to any extent .......its true

any engine prone to leakage...................directly related to gaskets ! !!!

will leak either

no less as most synthethics are considered on merit to be better

they also are factually known to resist corrosion [h2o ] & acid build up

essentially have proven to be easier on gasket materials

still as opinions & rationals prevail

so goes the argument
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  #111  
Old 01-14-2012, 06:14 AM
voxmagna voxmagna is offline
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Another 10 Cents!

I've replaced seals in many engines and always take care to look at the parts before I make my mind up to replace them. It's too easy to just go buy a new seal, fit it after a lot of work and get another leak.

In virtually all cases I find that engine seals have hardened. So if we are talking about polymers, we should also be looking at what the seals themselves are made of and their duty cycle, including operating temperature. The type of 'Dowty' seal we are talking about here has a spring loaded lip. That spring, the inward flex, the seal material and the resultant pressure is very important for long life of the rotating shaft. There are some cases where a groove can be worn into a shaft and is not easily spotted. A new seal will have a hard job sealing to anything but a smooth ground shaft. Seal manufacturers compromise the designed spring tension to give long wear life for the shaft.

It's the hardening of the seal that concerns me most when you start changing the formulae of lubricants. Often when you look closely at a shaft surface you will see a dark colored deposit around the point where the seal edge is in contact. This deposit may be due to a very localised breakdown of the lubricant in the wiping surface, even some friction from the rotating shaft.

As time goes on, the seal is getting harder, losing its flexibility to keep the seal lip at the same contact pressure and deposits from oil building up at the seal surface are helping to keep the seal. At this stage you could say the seal has already failed and you are on borrowed time.

Then you change the oil formula, the efficiency of detergent in the oil could be better, which gives greater engine and oil life between changes, but if it starts cleaning up deposits on the shaft which have helped the old seal to seal. Now there is reduced or zero contact pressure on the lip, that old seal will start leaking.

Even taking care when replacing new seals on vehicles I have had some leak which you would not expect. When I look at the seals they seemed harder than I'd expect and I put this down to long time stored on the shelf. Many oems factor in spares during their first few vehicle manufacturing runs, so you are never sure how old your 'new' oem seal actually is. On one vehicle that gave trouble with an easy to get to diff. seal, I popped the 'new' oem seal in boiling water for a couple of minutes. That seal never leaked and the seal lip was so soft and supple when it went on.

Despite the confidence many will have when buying oem seals. I always try to source from a reputable seal re-seller, because they have a high volume stock turnover.

On the synthetic oil causing a seal leak discussion , I think the seal is probably already on borrowed time and would have failed eventually. But the hardness of seals I've extracted are clues to high temperature running of the engine and oil, NOT the type of oil used. You don't see so much hardening on a rear wheel drive diff. seal, which is running quite cold, but you do see it on the clutch O ring and output shaft seals of K- Bikes.

This discussion thread has two sides. 1. Is the seal mileage for a NEW seal greater or less with synthetic oil than with dyno oil? and 2. Is synthetic oil responsible for causing a used and worn seal to leak? We should also remind ourselves that K-Brick seal leaks can come from TWO different seals. Most common is the clutch O ring which is not a seal in the conventional sense. Less common are leaks from the output shaft seal, but we change them anyway. If you showed that clutch seal application to a seal designer, I'm sure they would not have chosen the BMW design solution in such a critical location. That seal doesn't even need to rotate, it is only a packing (stuffing) gland required to work in motor oils and at high temperatures. If you think about how an electrical cable clamp seal or faucet shaft seal works, that's all this seal has to do.

1. Is a fairer scientific argument to prove. 2. Considers all used seals are the same when some will have run hotter or are harder, and may have built up a shaft deposit helping the worn seal to stay leak free for longer.

Another argument against switching to synthetic oils is to do so for increased mileage between oil changes. After all, you are paying more for the oil, so what do you expect to win? That carries the risk that micro particles not trapped by the oil filter and swilling around in the oil for longer, may increase wear on seals already worn.

What 'extended' engine longevity we are seeking for our K-bikes, to justify the synth oil switch? There are already riders here with high mileage bikes run on Dyno from day one. What really matters are the parts of the bike that fail causing expensive repairs and downtime.

1. Get the clutch seal design right first.
2. Reduce the extremes of engine temperature - both coolant and oil.
3. Replace hard to get to breather hoses with a longer life silicone alternative.
4. Do a careful job on the timing cover seal.

1-3 should take care of most weaknesses on the Brick needing the expensive teardown. 1 and 2 require some creative design thinking, but have the best payback!

5. Rear drive - check bearing play and seal regularly.
6. Better shocks + rear hugger.
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  #112  
Old 01-15-2012, 01:33 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

I'm calling EPM in Georgia on Monday. They will make teflon seals to replace viton for any application. The teflon has a temp range from something like 100 below to 500+ and increases shaft speed by a factor of about 3. The stock seal I removed on Friday didn't even have a garter spring. No damn wonder it failed.
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  #113  
Old 01-15-2012, 02:23 PM
voxmagna voxmagna is offline
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Be careful. You may be getting confused!

The output rotating shaft seal was a garter type, until they changed it. The seal that mostly fails is an O ring that sits behind the nut clamping down the clutch basket assembly. Nothing rotates inside this seal, its only function is to keep engine oil out of the clutch.

Here it is part 11:

http://www.realoem.com/bmw/showparts...&hg=21&fg=2 1

The Viton O ring most now put back in there is really 'Teflon' material under a different brand name. But that doesn't change my opinion an O ring cross section for that part doesn't seem the right profile to use. I think the correct profile for the clutch O ring should be a Square Ring:

http://www.marcorubber.com/square_rings.htm

These people seem to be experts!

You need a clutch basket in your hands sat in front of a seal specialist to have them suggest a better profile for that application. Teflon, ptfe or whatever is probably the right material, but it's properties need it to be compressible. Viton will do -15F to 400F whilst Perflouroelastomer will do -10F to 615F. You then have to source your chosen material and size in small quantities!

Here are some material properties:

http://www.marcorubber.com/materialguide.htm

K-Bikes used two types of output shaft seal for the rotating shaft. Early bikes like mine used the standard 'Dowty' type garter seal with a tension spring on the lip. Then as far as I know, BMW thought they would go down the same route as the racing guys (who design proper engine cooling!) and started supplying a slip on Teflon seal as standard. The replacement oem as far as I know is now always a Teflon slip on and there's some special procedure for fitting it. The main argument for using these teflon seals as far as I know, is not just a wider temperature range, but less shaft wear. I saw no noticeable wear on my output shaft with a garter spring seal.

That introduces another variable in trying to do a survey. Is it the clutch O ring seal leaking (most probably) or the output shaft seal and which type is it.

Being a total pragmatist with a bike that had done 36K with no output shaft seal leak and wanting at least another 36K, I replaced my garter seal with the same type from my seal supplier. I have no experience of fitting their Teflon alternative. It's quite common for manufacturers to bring out something new, just to take the heat off complaints. I didn't buy into their new seal.
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  #114  
Old 01-15-2012, 08:39 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by voxmagna
Be careful. You may be getting confused!

The output rotating shaft seal was a garter type, until they changed it. The seal that mostly fails is an O ring that sits behind the nut clamping down the clutch basket assembly. Nothing rotates inside this seal, its only function is to keep engine oil out of the clutch.

Here it is part 11:

http://www.realoem.com/bmw/showparts...&hg=21&fg=2 1

The Viton O ring most now put back in there is really 'Teflon' material under a different brand name. But that doesn't change my opinion an O ring cross section for that part doesn't seem the right profile to use. I think the correct profile for the clutch O ring should be a Square Ring:

http://www.marcorubber.com/square_rings.htm

These people seem to be experts!

You need a clutch basket in your hands sat in front of a seal specialist to have them suggest a better profile for that application. Teflon, ptfe or whatever is probably the right material, but it's properties need it to be compressible. Viton will do -15F to 400F whilst Perflouroelastomer will do -10F to 615F. You then have to source your chosen material and size in small quantities!

Here are some material properties:

http://www.marcorubber.com/materialguide.htm

K-Bikes used two types of output shaft seal for the rotating shaft. Early bikes like mine used the standard 'Dowty' type garter seal with a tension spring on the lip. Then as far as I know, BMW thought they would go down the same route as the racing guys (who design proper engine cooling!) and started supplying a slip on Teflon seal as standard. The replacement oem as far as I know is now always a Teflon slip on and there's some special procedure for fitting it. The main argument for using these teflon seals as far as I know, is not just a wider temperature range, but less shaft wear. I saw no noticeable wear on my output shaft with a garter spring seal.

That introduces another variable in trying to do a survey. Is it the clutch O ring seal leaking (most probably) or the output shaft seal and which type is it.

Being a total pragmatist with a bike that had done 36K with no output shaft seal leak and wanting at least another 36K, I replaced my garter seal with the same type from my seal supplier. I have no experience of fitting their Teflon alternative. It's quite common for manufacturers to bring out something new, just to take the heat off complaints. I didn't buy into their new seal.

I'm talking about the rear main seal. Removed it on Friday and there was no garter spring. It looked flimsy. My 'O' ring was in excellent condition until I had to cut it to get it out. As for the additional temperature range the PTFEE affords, that is just icing on the cake. I'm really going for lower friction, better seal with a garter spring type and increased longevity. If the guys at EPM give me the go ahead I'm buying from them.
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  #115  
Old 01-16-2012, 04:55 AM
voxmagna voxmagna is offline
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Sounds like you are confident to make improvements, which is a good thing on these bikes considering their design age.

Will you then be running fully synth. engine lube?
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  #116  
Old 01-16-2012, 04:33 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Just talked with EPM. They have a minimum $45.00 order for VITON seals. If they make if from PTFE the minimum order is $245.00 since they will have to machine it. I'm getting a quote for a run of 100 of each type in the hope I can get a parts house to consider bringing them to market if we can get the retail close to the $27.00 BMW wants for the stock unit.
I'm also sending my old one to them for an unbiased evaluation of the design and materials.
I'll keep everyone up-to-date on what I find.
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  #117  
Old 01-17-2012, 08:12 PM
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Re: Why use Synthetic oil anyway??

Quote:
Originally Posted by voxmagna
I don't expect my bike to manage 100-200K miles without seal and leak faults (although I wish it could) and I read of very few serious engine, oil, or bearing problems. But I do read of many seal problems which are expensive to fix.

So without quoting the marketing blurb, what advantage (measurable and realizeable) is there to using synthetic oil in an old motor design?

I run dyno, change it 4-5K miles and don't do track. It's no big deal.


rods are rods

pistons are pistons

bearings are bearings

with the ' high output ' per litre motorcycle engines are able to achieve

with long standing industry leading tolerances

im very much surprised by your POV

cars routinely run the miles you mention & MORE without rebuild

or teardown

in fact many of the components are very near the SAME

so why shouldnt i expect my honda motorcycle to run as far as my honda civic

fact iks they DO ! ! !!

oh i see i mentioned hondas

my mistake

obviously thiks does NOT apply to

BMW bikes

BMW carz
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  #118  
Old 01-20-2012, 05:47 AM
voxmagna voxmagna is offline
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Cars need space in front so that space gets squished in a crash and saves your life.

The car engine is totally enclosed and designed so it can spend long periods in traffic queues without overheating. They have to design the engine to run with adequate cooling and have the space to do it. The weight of a *onda engine can be higher, as you don't have to prop up your car with your feet to keep it upright. I'll bet the car also has a decent oil cooler mounted in a good place where it can get air.

Compare the size of your *onda Civic fan, radiator and oil cooler with what you have on a K-bike. It's no wonder that the VW rear air cooled engine is popular for trike conversions - but then they have 3 wheels to take the weight!

We have to face the fact that Sport motorcycles are designed to be ridden mostly at high speeds. The compromises in engine design to achieve low weight and high power may be at the expense of the engine cooling in high air temperatures and city riding.

One day we might see the same compromises, but the bike will use its starter motor as an auxiliary motor for low speeds, weaving through city and frequent stop lights.
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  #119  
Old 01-20-2012, 01:10 PM
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by voxmagna

I'll bet the car also has a decent oil cooler mounted in a good place where it can get air.

I've owned tons of cars from a 1963 Turbo Corvair Spyder to a 2007 Accord with a 1970 BOSS-302, 427 Chevelle, M-B 240-d, 1995 Z/28 and others thrown in for good measure. The ONLY ones that had factory oil coolers were the M-B 240-d, BOSS-302 (optional), and the 1995 Z/28. The 2000 Civic, 2000 Accord, 2007 Accord, 1997 Grand Cherokee had none.
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  #120  
Old 01-20-2012, 03:33 PM
voxmagna voxmagna is offline
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Re: Engine seal leaks and synthetic oil

Many modern car petrol and diesel car engines now have to be turbo charged to achieve higher engine efficiency and lower emissions from smaller engines. Somewhere, there will be an oil cooler. Times have changed with more regulation and the cars you used to own like the one's I had are mostly scrapped, too uneconomic to run with high gas prices, or have a government tax penalty put on them for high emissions.

A car engine is not surrounded by plastic bodywork 2" from the engine block and sump. On these bikes there is virtually no means of free air circulation. Cooling comes from either the electric fan or ram air when the bike is moving fast enough.

Most K bike temperature gauges rarely stay at the same temperature, whereas car engine gauges show very little change, whether idling for long periods on the electric fans or driven hard in Summer.

Why is that?
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