Oil level

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Nick7
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Oil level

Postby Nick7 » Mon Jun 10, 2019 3:20 pm

Is it just me that considers the procedure to check the oil level when warmed up less then ideal( to be polite) So, you notice, for example though i have not experienced this that the oil sight glass is empty before a ride. What do do? Run it on a potentially dangerous low level...or put some in anyway to be safe?

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milleplod
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Re: Oil level

Postby milleplod » Mon Jun 10, 2019 4:54 pm

If the glass is empty before a ride....when the engine's cold....it's low on oil! Top it up till you can see some in the glass, perhaps halfway, go out for a blast, then, when the engine's properly hot, park up, on the centrestand, have a brew, admire the view or whatever....and then check it again for an accurate reading. Simples! :smile:

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King Herald
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Re: Oil level

Postby King Herald » Mon Jun 10, 2019 5:53 pm

When you come back from a ride it is no hardship to leave it on the side stand while you get your bike gear off etc. Then put it on the centre stand and check the level either a half hour later, or before next time you go riding.

I’ve messed mine up before by not bothering with the correct procedure, then setting off across the channel, and I ran dangerously low in Switzerland.

I had assumed the low level was due to not side-standing it after a ride, but no, it had consumed a fair bit of oil and I found it was only at the correct level when on the side stand, it got that low.
1997 BMW R1100R
1993 Honda Transalp 600

Nick7
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Re: Oil level

Postby Nick7 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 3:34 pm

Not sure I follow the side stand thing, tbh.But why not design it so that the oil level can be checked cold? So at cold the level is , say, half way up the glass? If you cant see it at cold, would that actually mean it is too low..or would it perhaps potentially be ok when hot and up into the glass? Why design it like that? Worse pn SP1 or bikes with no centre stand...which incidentally I just had refitted professionally on the St because a bush broke and there was no way, washer into springs included, that i could expand those springs..just no way! Took 2 guys and even then one cut himself a little..bought them a drink for that!!

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milleplod
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Re: Oil level

Postby milleplod » Thu Jun 13, 2019 4:29 pm

As I said above....if there's no oil in the glass when the engine's cold, the level is low. That, of course, is with the bike on the centrestand, as per the handbook. It might have enough in there for the engine not to go into meltdown....but it might not, and why would you risk it?! :smile:

I don't think there's anything odd about the method of checking - engine properly hot, bike level, check.

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Nick7
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Re: Oil level

Postby Nick7 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 4:40 pm

Thanks Pete. But it is bad design. Why test when hot...at least SAY..or maybe I missed it in the manual that if the level is below the window when cold, your about to seize up so put some in so you can see it, and then sort properly when hot...but to get hot you really need to go for a ride. So you go for a pre ride ride? Daft.

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Re: Oil level

Postby Mjolinor » Thu Jun 13, 2019 4:43 pm

You test when hot because it is a bike designed for long journeys so checking when cold is not so good as there is a higher than average chance that you need to check it on the road.

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Re: Oil level

Postby Nick7 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 5:01 pm

Fair enough...but at least say that if you cant see any when cold..dont even start it? Dontvget me started on checking dry sump like my xt500...amazing my bikes are still going really😂

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milleplod
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Re: Oil level

Postby milleplod » Fri Jun 14, 2019 7:48 am

I believe the issue when checking cold is that some oil will still be in the oil cooler, so it'll never be a 100% accurate check. Having said that, as I said earlier....no oil in sight glass when it's cold, put a bit in till you can see it, even if it's only just showing at the bottom of the glass. Then get it properly hot, let it sit for a few minutes - on the centrestand and check - that's accurate! :smile: And don't overfill it! Halfway in the glass is fine.

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andys
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Re: Oil level

Postby andys » Fri Jun 14, 2019 2:49 pm

I have a very simple method for checking oil level even in a cold engine.
After a decent ride, I let the oil settle for about half an hour or so, and top up if necessary to the correct level, which for me is about two thirds up the sight glass.
Then the next day I check the level in the engine when it's stone cold.
That's how I know my optimum level even in a cold engine.
I don't need to warm it up to check.

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Re: Oil level

Postby Nick7 » Fri Jun 14, 2019 5:01 pm

Great...so where is the oil level in the glass when cold?

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Re: Oil level

Postby andys » Fri Jun 14, 2019 7:32 pm

Great...so where is the oil level in the glass when cold?
I think you missed my point.
Get your level right with a warmed up engine.
Check it again after it's cooled right down, and that's your optimum level.
You no longer need to warm up to check.
For example, in the case of my R9T, my ideal level when fully warmed up is two thirds up the sight glass.
When completely cooled down the level settles at exactly half way up.
So I know that if my level reads half way when cold, it's where it should be.
No need to warm the engine up first.

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Re: Oil level

Postby King Herald » Sat Jun 15, 2019 8:10 am

You can go a fair way below the minimal level before anything goes wrong. It is not going to seize up just because it is a few mm low. As long as you can see the oil level somewherein the sight glass there is nothing to worry about at all.

I lost over half my oil in a major oil leak a month or two ago, cam chain tensioner unscrewed suddenly and blew over 2 litres out, oil light eventually came one, but no damage done.

As regards the checking procedure, yes, it is a bit archaic, but so is the agricultural BMW gear change, yet they didn’t change it for decades. You don’t have to use this method, but to get a totally accurate and repeatable reading it is the best way.
1997 BMW R1100R
1993 Honda Transalp 600

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Re: Oil level

Postby Nick7 » Sat Jun 15, 2019 9:27 am

Thanks guys..very helpful. Just be grateful we dont have to change it every 1000m per my Jota..no filter!

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Re: Oil level

Postby Mjolinor » Sat Jun 15, 2019 10:30 am

Thanks guys..very helpful. Just be grateful we dont have to change it every 1000m per my Jota..no filter!
:eek: change every km????????????

:)

Nick7
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Re: Oil level

Postby Nick7 » Sat Jun 15, 2019 11:09 am

Ha ha..not quite that bad...every 1k miles.Takes same oil as st..morris v twin mineral 20 50...bought in 25l drum..xt uses it too. SP1 does not! Not starting an oil thread!!!

King Herald
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Re: Oil level

Postby King Herald » Sun Jun 16, 2019 8:03 am

Thanks guys..very helpful. Just be grateful we dont have to change it every 1000m per my Jota..no filter!
No oil filter?? Seriously? :shock: How does one go about running such an engine in after rebuild? Or from new?
1997 BMW R1100R
1993 Honda Transalp 600

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Re: Oil level

Postby Nick7 » Sun Jun 16, 2019 11:07 am

Change oil very quickly! It has a strainer..not very fine, plus centifugal effect in the crank..non cleanable. There is nothing like a Jota on song😉

King Herald
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Re: Oil level

Postby King Herald » Sun Jun 16, 2019 4:42 pm

And no pipework to plumb one into, I assume? :???:

I once had a bike with a centrifugal filter, think it may have been a Kawasaki 750, but the cone had a 1mm layer of metal dust firmly plastered on the inner face, when I stripped it down one day. I needed a screwdriver to ease it off. It did also have a disposable filter element too.
1997 BMW R1100R
1993 Honda Transalp 600


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