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Author Topic: Oil leaks  (Read 2261 times)

indian48

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Oil leaks
« on: December 11, 2007, 07:12:19 PM »
I think I spoke too soon about the lack of oil seepage from my new AVL 500 here in India! I am back from a 20 mile spin this morning, and while I enjoyed it as much as I always do, when I got off I noticed black oil spots - like the chicken pox for size - and about a dozen of them, on the left hand side of the engine, in the flat space between the top of the clutch cover and the base of the engine.
Does anyone have any idea of where these could be coming from, and the fix to stop these?
If anything is worth doing, it is worth doing well

bwilson17

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Re: Oil leaks
« Reply #1 on: December 11, 2007, 08:36:35 PM »
I had the same problem with my AVL - turned out to be chain lube being slung up on the area you are talking about.

indian48

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Re: Oil leaks
« Reply #2 on: December 11, 2007, 08:49:25 PM »
Thnx for helping in settling that one - I had lubed the chain a couple of days ago, and this morning was the first time I rode the bike after doing that. It must be the same reason then in my case as well, and all I will have to do is wipe them off, I guess. So the bike retains its spotless record in this aspect as far as the engine is concerned, and that's nice to know!
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Foggy_Auggie

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Re: Oil leaks
« Reply #3 on: December 11, 2007, 10:38:07 PM »
Yep - it's chain lube. 

Here in the States there is a product called "Chain Wax" which I've been using for years.  On the centerstand with the engine idling and in first gear (make SURE the rear wheel is not touching the ground)  I spray it lightly on the rotating chain.

Chain Wax hardens to a cosmoline consistency when cold.  When warm from running it's about like wheel bearing grease.  And it doesn't fling off like other chain lubes.  It still gives a few oil spots like you experience but nothing like the lighter lubes.

Regards, Foggy
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indian48

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Re: Oil leaks
« Reply #4 on: December 11, 2007, 11:22:00 PM »
What is a good way to clean the chain in place? I know that the best thing to do is to dunk it in solvent to get it really clean, and then to dunk it in grease dissolved in a solvent that leaves the grease in place when the solvent evaporates - but is there a quicker way to just clean it without taking it off?
By the way, the problem with lubing it while moving that I have found is that getting the lube on the rollers is of no value at all, what you need to do is to get it in at the two ends where the links are connected to the rollers, in the gaps so that it gets into where it needs to. I am not sure how well that can be achieved when the chain is moving around.
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Tiny Tim

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Re: Oil leaks
« Reply #5 on: December 12, 2007, 02:57:40 AM »
  On the centerstand with the engine idling and in first gear (make SURE the rear wheel is not touching the ground)  I spray it lightly on the rotating chain.

Foggy, this reminds me of an early cleaning session on my Electra. On the centre stand with a small piece of ply under the stand for extra lift; first gear and ticking over nicely. The back wheel was now clean and shiny. Time to move around to the starboard side and repeat the process. Having an arthritic hip, I used the bike to lever myself up off the floor.The back whel hit the floor and we both took off into the garage. Lucky the door was open I suppose!.

No damage done as no one saw me!!

D'oh!!

REgardsd

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Tiny Tim

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2005 Electra AVL

bwilson17

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Re: Oil leaks
« Reply #6 on: December 12, 2007, 10:06:59 AM »
Indian48,

For chain lube here is what I do - (At least once a week if you are riding regularly) Using a small paint brush I coat that chain good with a heavy motor oil then let is set for awhile before riding it. The oil that is slung off is not different than a regular chain lube. This is just my experience.

Vince

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Re: Oil leaks
« Reply #7 on: December 12, 2007, 01:00:03 PM »
I have had very poor results with chain wax, with chain wear accelerating upwards of 400%. Modern chain lubes are a very heave grease dissolved  in a carrier. It goes on thin, then the  carrier evaporates and leaves the grease, Lube the chain after you come home so the carrier has time to evaporate. Most people hose down the chain, then go riding. This just makes a mess. Also, it only takes one bead of lube down each side of the chain. You want to get it between the inner and outer link plates so it can seep into the chain rollers. Spraying down the center doesn't put the lube where the chain needs it. Make sure you lube regularly, and every time you come in from a ride in the rain. Doing this minimizes the mess. To clean up splatters you can soak a rag in WD-40 and wipe it off.

Foggy_Auggie

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Re: Oil leaks
« Reply #8 on: December 12, 2007, 01:07:27 PM »
I squirt the Chain Wax on the inside link ends by aiming the squirt tube down onto the inside bottom chain run.  Not at the rear sprocket.  Watch the fingers...

And years back I removed a master link to check to see if the Chain Wax migrated all through the rolling elements - it did.

Chain Wax is used by competitive MX dirt bikers so it's been proven.

There are chain cleaners that work without having to remove the chain.  They are held by hand on the bottom chain run and consist of brushes and filled with something like Simple Green cleaning fluid.

Re. Vince - the Chain Wax I use goes on thin (sprays like WD-40) and is used after a ride when the chain is warm.  It cools to a grease but thins out again when the chain warms up.

I haven't had any problems with it.  But I don't put high mileage on my bikes at one time like I used to.
Regards, Foggy
« Last Edit: December 12, 2007, 01:15:43 PM by Foggy_Auggie »
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indian48

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Re: Oil leaks
« Reply #9 on: December 12, 2007, 03:13:52 PM »
Thanks for all the feedback, gents; I think that I agree with Vince on this subject. Getting it just where it needs to get into, is the trick I think that needs to be mastered. Calls for patience to get it right, bead of lube at a time, link by link. So far the one time with this bike I have used just engine grade oil to do this, and I find that while it gets inside, a lot of the bead of lube flows right over the gap and drips down on to the floor. And of course, on to the engine, whenever you run the bike. I need to do what I did 30 years ago, get myself some grease and dissolve it in gasoline as the carrier and get a bead of that in the right place on each chain link. Somehow, I don't see that happening on a moving chain quite as well, so it is a link by link process. But that will still take a lot less time than getting the chain off to do it really the way it ought to be done - for both cleaning the chain and then lubing it. And lubing after a ride, while the chain is warm, and leaving it to stand for the gas to evaporate is the way to do it too. I don't think I can lay my hands on the kind of ready to use chain lube that Vince refers to here in India, that's why I will have to make my own stuff.
What I remember from a book written in the fifties - clean the chain by dunking it in solvent. And then take some grease in a pan, and put it on a burner flame so it melts, and cook the clean chain in it for a while, so that the melted grease gets into all the places it needs to get into. After ten minutes of doing that, get the pan off the burner, fish out the chain after a couple of minutes, and let it drip off the grease back into the pan for an hour, even overnight, before reinstalling the chain.
I never ever did that with my bike 30 years ago, just used dissolved grease into each link with the chain on the bike. Never had any chain trouble for the 30k miles I did on the bike, but then it also had a full chain cover that kept the chain protected from the elements,,,,
How often do people take the chain off to clean/lube it with their Bullets?
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Leonard

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Re: Oil leaks (chain lube)
« Reply #10 on: December 12, 2007, 03:34:07 PM »
Dupont Teflon Chain Lube, $5 at Lowes for a huge can.  See http://www.webbikeworld.com/t2/motorcycle-chain-lube/dupont-teflon-chain-lube.htm
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indian48

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Re: Oil leaks
« Reply #11 on: December 12, 2007, 03:38:33 PM »
Interesting - I will look to pick this up the next time I am in the US. And then probably have to suffer the opening of my checked in bag on the way back when it stops in the screener for containing a suspicious object, but worth that bother, I think!
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RagMan

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Re: Oil leaks
« Reply #12 on: December 12, 2007, 11:22:47 PM »
Rather than trying to get some in luggage out of the paranoid US of A, you might have one of us buy you some, and send it to you. They get really strange if anything is in bags that they think should not be.
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indian48

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Re: Oil leaks
« Reply #13 on: December 12, 2007, 11:36:32 PM »
Appreciate the offer; but then I would have to deal with paranoid Indian customs folk wanting to know what I am trying to smuggle in - they would simply not believe that even if they wanted to levy duty, it would be on just five bucks worth of stuff! If I am carrying the bag, it would be a lot simpler to explain it to them.
Let me think over to decide  what is the lesser of the two evils,,,government folks seem to come from a common gene pool globally, I suspect ;D
If anything is worth doing, it is worth doing well