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Discussion Starter #1
I made a huge mistake... Im utterly embarrassed to even admit to it but for the sake of figuring out what i messed up, im going to swallow my pride, set aside the ego and hope that you will all forgive me.

I had a very slow oil leak. Every night id get home id put the pan under the bike. I was cehcking the oil regularly but got lazy as of late. Yesterday coming home from work, i started to hear a metal on metal noise coming from the right side of my engine near the front top (im thinking and hoping valves). i pulled over and let her idol to see if it would go away. Eventually it cut out all together. Still starts back up but with the noise. Got the bike towed to the shop to figure out what was what.

This is the part i need your forgiveness for. When i checked the oil level, i was all but bone dry... im sorry.

Filled her up with oil and turned it back on and still have the same noise, if not a little quieter, with the added effect of oil coming out of my right exhaust and some smoke.

So what should i start with? Guys at the shop noticed where my cam chain adjuster is has some seepage of oil so im going to replace that gasket and do a cam adjustment. What order do i need to do these thins in? iv read i should check the valves, check the cam chain. What could be letting oil into my exhaust. please dont say piston damnage or fried rings...


wizards of the honda forums, i summon thee.
 

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That's a pretty abject mea culpa - but forgiveness won't solve this problem.

I know that you feel bad enough as it is, but changing the tensioner gasket is inadequate penance.

You can either tear the engine down and see what you ruined by running it low on oil or you can keep riding it until it blows up. Pretty simple choice, but the longer you run it the worse the damage will be.

They all need to be rebuilt some time, but you certainly advanced the schedule on this one!
 

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Difficult to diagnose there are many things it could be. However it doesn't sound good. You will need to pull the engine in any case so thats where you will need to start. Hopefully it is only top end, steel swarf will get everywhere. You will need to check all the cam journals and in truth anything else that moves. Minimum will be a new gasket set with whatever repairs need doing.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
lol this has been the absolute worst week iv ever had. on top of everything at my job, this was the last thing i needed to happen.

guess ill start ripping my engine apart again. i just got done doing this for the bottom end like 4 months ago.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
what are the things i can begin checking without taking the engine off the frame. id like to start small and work my way up. either way this winter i plan to do a full top end, but if i can get te bad noise to stop without taking the engine off the frame id feel a little better.

im thinking worse case scenario, i screwed up a piston and or a valve. in which case i have no idea where im getting a new one .
 

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If the noise was coming from the top end, work from there down. But remember the swarf, it will get everywhere and you absolutely must clear it all away.
 

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Before pulling the engine, remove the cam chain tensioner and tappet adjustment covers. Check the valve clearance and the condition of the tensioner. If that doesn't fix it, everything else on this tread applies.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
so a little update.

turned the bike on for a minute today and no noise. decided to check compression. 155 and 155 (give or take)
My mechanic things i may have added too much oil. when i got the bike to the shop the day it broke down, the dipstick showed no oil on it, so i put in a quart and a half.

anyways, decided while i was there to adjust the cam chain, check the valve spacing and fix that. they were alright but one on each side needed adjusting. One of them however was a pain. the lock nut around the screw was more or less fused to the screw so i adjusted it by turning the bolt. i know thats not the right way to do it, but i figure it will do. sprayed some solvent on it to rest over night in hopes that it will loosen up and then tomorrow i can adjust it the proper way.
when i was taking off the valve covers and removed the breather tubes, the breather tubes on the exhaust side has oil in and around them.

so where i stand now is compression checked and is good. valves adjusted and cam adjusted. tomorrow going to do dynamic timing then see where im at. will check back in later. its looking up though. thankfully.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
another small update. checked out the stater roter with the timing light and my right cylinders good, but the left is on the advance. so iv got to fix my timing (dynamic and static) then i guess do another carb sync?
 

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You compression is NOT good....New rings are going to be required......
163 PSI is minimum spec for the 450 and 500T.....180/185 is what you want it to be......
Not that it won't run at 155, just it won't run as WELL, and it WILL blow-by some oil.....
The sudden "Wow, I'm very low on oil" scenario is often from fuel-thinned oil (leaving the petcock on) and THIS leads to engine knocking and other strange occurrances.....

Damage tends to increase exponentially with duration of run time.....
I'm afraid it's probably time to tear it down and see what damage has been done, while some parts may still be salvagable....JMHO
 

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when I got my bike, the oil was very thin and smelled with petrol... PO complained about low compression. I wonder how the compression will be... did not manage to get a 10mm adapter to my meter, so I could not measure it myself.
I'm really waiting to see what damage you got Matt, it will be some lesson for all of us.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
180?! Jesus. I guess this winter i will be taking the top end apart. I was kind of planning on doing that anyways so not that upsetting. Just going to be difficult to find all the parts i need. rings are so expensive.
at any rate the noise went away. a comment about the petcock, i never leave it open. the first thing i do when i get off the bike is turn it off. im obsessed with doing it (lil ocd).
 

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Discussion Starter #16
You compression is NOT good....New rings are going to be required......
163 PSI is minimum spec for the 450 and 500T.....180/185 is what you want it to be......
Not that it won't run at 155, just it won't run as WELL, and it WILL blow-by some oil.....
The sudden "Wow, I'm very low on oil" scenario is often from fuel-thinned oil (leaving the petcock on) and THIS leads to engine knocking and other strange occurrances.....

Damage tends to increase exponentially with duration of run time.....
I'm afraid it's probably time to tear it down and see what damage has been done, while some parts may still be salvagable....JMHO

in your opinion, will running it with 155/150 compression damage anything? Using a gauge with a rubber hose, will that allow for a level of inaccuracy on the reading? Also, i cant find anywhere online where it says the compression level of the pistons, just its ration (8:5:1).

at this point, i want to finish the timing and ride it home (which is about 5 miles) and want to know if i am going to brake anything by doing this. If there is a risk of catastrophic, ill get it towed, but id like to avoid paying 50 bucks to the shop to get it towed. I think im going to have to sell this bike :/
 

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Now I'm going to talk out of the other side of my mouth.

Your first post made it sound like the engine was blown up and spitting parts out the exhaust. Now it's running quiet and the compression is 155 both sides.

When I read the rest of your posts, mine, and others I think that we were too hard on you. These bikes were made to run and can take a lot of abuse. It's work to keep them in tip top shape and lots of owners never did anything to keep them going.

Don't let your respect for the bikes and other peoples perfectionism keep you from enjoying your stuff. Do what you need to in good conscience but remember that this is transportation - fun, but still transportation.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Now I'm going to talk out of the other side of my mouth.

Your first post made it sound like the engine was blown up and spitting parts out the exhaust. Now it's running quiet and the compression is 155 both sides.

When I read the rest of your posts, mine, and others I think that we were too hard on you. These bikes were made to run and can take a lot of abuse. It's work to keep them in tip top shape and lots of owners never did anything to keep them going.

Don't let your respect for the bikes and other peoples perfectionism keep you from enjoying your stuff. Do what you need to in good conscience but remember that this is transportation - fun, but still transportation.

to be honest when i made the original post, i was very emotional and probably didnt type it all out in the most understandable fashion so here is a quick onec over of what happened and what i did so far. ill try to name it all in order.

got back to philly from work, heard a metal on metal sound i hadnt heard before.
got towed to the shop.
dipstick said i had no oil in it
put about 1.5 quarts into it and started her up.
the sound was less promanent so i took it for a spin around the block.
came back and there was oil coming out of the right tail pipe. (later discovered this was because i probably put too much oil into it)
did a compression test (150 by 155 but this was done cold the next day i believe.)
did a valve adjustment. one of them was tight when it was suppose to be loose so i put all of them to spec (.03 spacing)
next we checked the dynamic timing. one side was good, the other side was timed to the advance.

so thats where i am right now. I figure i need to get the bike warm and test the compression again since i did the valves AFTER the initial compression test. then just for shits and giggles, finish fixing the timeing and do the points and check the compression again just for the sake of doing it.

when i had started it yesterday (remember the previous day i had done the valve adjustment and the cam adjustment) there was no more banging noise but it sounded out of sync.

also ill need to do a carb sync after im done with the timing.

does all this sound right/ easier to read john?
 

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It all makes sense. My point is that you are the owner of your bike and doing your best to take care of it. No need to ask permission or forgiveness of anybody else and certainly don't take everything that you read on here as gospel.

Use the free advice for what it's worth!
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Its definetly a fine line to dance. Having a vintage bike thats all original with low mileage, but at the same time like you said its transportation. i should not be scared to ride it. I just dont want to be riding it if there is somethings seriously seriously wrong. If riding it with 150 compression isnt going to hurt anything but is something that should be addressed eventually, then ill go ride it. I take all your advice to heart because you guys know these things better then i.
 
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