slave cylinder woes - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 25 Old Dec 16th, 2006, 1:12 pm Thread Starter
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Angry slave cylinder woes

I have now changed out my slave cylinder twice in as many months, first one I put in started leaking within a few days, got another one, put it in yesterday, was leaking by the time I got home, come to find out it is probably the seal around the actuator rod, so now have to tear it all apart again to change the seal out. Just a word of advice to everyone who is changing out their slave cylinder in the future, might as well replace that seal while you are at it so you don't have to go through all the extra work.
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post #2 of 25 Old Dec 16th, 2006, 7:26 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sheldan2
I have now changed out my slave cylinder twice in as many months, first one I put in started leaking within a few days, got another one, put it in yesterday, was leaking by the time I got home, come to find out it is probably the seal around the actuator rod, so now have to tear it all apart again to change the seal out. Just a word of advice to everyone who is changing out their slave cylinder in the future, might as well replace that seal while you are at it so you don't have to go through all the extra work.
Yep, that seal (it is on the transmission input shaft, not the actuator rod) can leak transmission oil, that can also ruin the clutch, but the new drain hole at least lets it out before that happens.

There is a good chance that the transmission oil will damage the slave cylinder, so you may be buying another of those!

My second LT had that seal fail at 400 miles! Dealer replaced it and the clutch, but did not replace the slave. At 4000 miles, the slave failed, likely due to the transmission fluid leak previously.

My thought is that the tranny oil may dilute/wash out the grease in the throwout bearing in the end of the slave piston.

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work...I want to achieve it through not dying.

David Shealey
Dandridge, TN
EX: '01 Black LT, BAT BYKE (Totaled at 110,000 miles)
IBA SS, BB, BBG, 10/10ths.
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post #3 of 25 Old Dec 16th, 2006, 9:06 pm Thread Starter
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Thanks for the input David, hopefully I wont have to replace this slave cylinder again as it has only been on the bike for a few days, and probably wont be on for more than a week before I get the new part in
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post #4 of 25 Old Dec 16th, 2006, 9:15 pm
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I don't think the transmission fluid could damage the slave cylinder seal so that shouldn't be a problem. I'd just check the throwout bearing as David suggests to make sure it is greased properly.

Good Luck,
Kevin

1999 K1200LT, patiently waiting for a new model.
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post #5 of 25 Old Dec 16th, 2006, 10:17 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kevincook
I don't think the transmission fluid could damage the slave cylinder seal so that shouldn't be a problem. I'd just check the throwout bearing as David suggests to make sure it is greased properly.

Good Luck,
Kevin
Problem is that it is a small ball thrust bearing, and you cannot see into it, or take it out. It is pressed into the end of the slave piston, and there is only a pretty small clearance between the outer and inner races. One may be able to squeeze some grease into the groove, but not knowing what grease was in it to begin with it is possible to use an incompatible grease and cause more problems than just leaving it alone.

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work...I want to achieve it through not dying.

David Shealey
Dandridge, TN
EX: '01 Black LT, BAT BYKE (Totaled at 110,000 miles)
IBA SS, BB, BBG, 10/10ths.
No bike now, but maybe in the future.
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post #6 of 25 Old Dec 17th, 2006, 8:52 am
 
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Bear with me here, I'm still learning.
When the clutch is depressed (squeezed), the piston pushes out against that little bearing at the end of the slave cylinder, which pushes against the rod, releasing the clutch plates inside. Because the clutch is spinning, the rod in turn spins between the clutch plate and the end of the slave piston (which has a bearing at the end). That little slave bearing is not easy to lubricate.
Correct?
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post #7 of 25 Old Dec 17th, 2006, 9:00 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hoodoodrum
Bear with me here, I'm still learning.
When the clutch is depressed (squeezed), the piston pushes out against that little bearing at the end of the slave cylinder, which pushes against the rod, releasing the clutch plates inside. Because the clutch is spinning, the rod in turn spins between the clutch plate and the end of the slave piston (which has a bearing at the end). That little slave bearing is not easy to lubricate.
Correct?
Yes, you are correct. If anything causes that bearing to have too much drag, or seize, the piston will then spin in the cylinder, destroying it rapidly. I had one do that, pictures are posted in the past a couple of times.

I think many slave failures may be due to the bearing tightening up.

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work...I want to achieve it through not dying.

David Shealey
Dandridge, TN
EX: '01 Black LT, BAT BYKE (Totaled at 110,000 miles)
IBA SS, BB, BBG, 10/10ths.
No bike now, but maybe in the future.
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post #8 of 25 Old Dec 17th, 2006, 11:43 am
 
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If I may say so, that is an incredibly poor design for a "pilot bearing". When I replaced my slave, the new one had a tiny dab of transluent grease in the divot for the actuator rod.

Didn't look like near enough, so I plopped a good amount of Krytox 250 in there. Even if the internal bearing wants to drag a little, the coefficient of friction on that grease is so low it shouldn't matter. The rod should just spin on the divot. After hearing this, I'm glad I did that.
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post #9 of 25 Old Dec 17th, 2006, 8:05 pm
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dshealey
Yes, you are correct. If anything causes that bearing to have too much drag, or seize, the piston will then spin in the cylinder, destroying it rapidly. I had one do that, pictures are posted in the past a couple of times.

I think many slave failures may be due to the bearing tightening up.
I would imagine that if the piston is leaking, the fluid has an easier time following a path into the clutch housing (plates) given that the rod connecting both is spinning (acting like a pipeline of sorts) the fluid through the holes.

Whoa...... now I am realizing just how IMPORTANT that weep hole becomes. Keeps the fluid from buiding up to the level of the rod.
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post #10 of 25 Old Dec 17th, 2006, 8:56 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sheldan2
I have now changed out my slave cylinder twice in as many months, first one I put in started leaking within a few days, got another one, put it in yesterday, was leaking by the time I got home, come to find out it is probably the seal around the actuator rod, so now have to tear it all apart again to change the seal out. Just a word of advice to everyone who is changing out their slave cylinder in the future, might as well replace that seal while you are at it so you don't have to go through all the extra work.
BTDT !
Make sure that seal is not too far in and that you don't damage the housing it fits in when you take the old one out. It must NOT be driven in until it stops and must be absoulutely square in the housing. I got the dealer to install mine with proper drift that sets the depth and alignment of the seal, but I had the gearbox out, which made that easier. There's some info in the Clymer manual, but it tells you to measure the depth of the old one before removal.

-Brian Louw
Arroyo Grande, CA.

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post #11 of 25 Old Dec 20th, 2006, 8:28 pm
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Hope We Got It Fixed!

Quote:
Originally Posted by blouw
BTDT !
Make sure that seal is not too far in and that you don't damage the housing it fits in when you take the old one out. It must NOT be driven in until it stops and must be absoulutely square in the housing. I got the dealer to install mine with proper drift that sets the depth and alignment of the seal, but I had the gearbox out, which made that easier. There's some info in the Clymer manual, but it tells you to measure the depth of the old one before removal.
Today we replaced the Transmission Input Shaft Seal on Mike's LT. Everything went extremely smooth and the whole operation from putting bike on the lift to being finished, wiped down tools and cleaned garage was only 2 1/2 hrs!

Now...we're just waiting for Mike to ride her some and file a report after checking to see if the weephole is leaking.

BTW...VERY IMPORTANT...If you do the Slave Cylinder replacement/Weephole Procedure and find ANY fluid in the cavity...BE SURE TO DOUBLE CHECK AND MAKE SURE THAT IT IS BRAKE FLUID AND NOT GEAR OIL. If it is gear oil, you need to change the input shaft seal while in there.

Mike, please post a follow-up so everyone can know how this turns out. If it leaks again...just SHOOT IT!!!

Jack Homesley
Cornelius, NC USA
'06 Goldwing - "The Black Pearl"
Too many others to list...


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post #12 of 25 Old Dec 20th, 2006, 9:07 pm
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You're becoming the expert

Jack, You must be able to do this with you eyes closed. You're becoming the NC expert. I might have to make a run up there in the spring to get mine done if the timing looks good to you. Have a great Christmas.

Dano
Tampa, Fl.

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post #13 of 25 Old Dec 20th, 2006, 9:59 pm
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I'll be glad to help.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dandiver
Jack, You must be able to do this with you eyes closed. You're becoming the NC expert. I might have to make a run up there in the spring to get mine done if the timing looks good to you. Have a great Christmas.

Dano,

Just let me know and I'll be glad to help. I'm learning more about this beast every day. I do plan on hosting another tech session this spring (very early) if there is enough interest. But, we'll knock it out...no labor charges here!

Jack Homesley
Cornelius, NC USA
'06 Goldwing - "The Black Pearl"
Too many others to list...


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post #14 of 25 Old Dec 21st, 2006, 12:31 pm Thread Starter
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Checked the slave this morning no more leaks, Thanks Jack, think we have finally fixed the problem. We should have changed the seal to begin with when changing out the cylinder, in fact should just make it part of the operation when doing any in the future.
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post #15 of 25 Old Dec 21st, 2006, 12:53 pm
 
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My clutch just started to slip in 3rd 4th and5th Gear. When I Gun it will get up and go but not like it should. I can tell the Motor is turning Faster than it should for the acceleration I am getting. Just called the dealer. My warranty expired on the 3rd of this month. I purchased he bike used and planned on purchasing xtended warranty just put it off 1 month too late... oh well. Dealer wants $1300 to replace clutch and slave. Being a former Auto Tech I decided to buy the $300 worth of parts and do it myself. Before I order the parts I wanted to run it by you PROs. I pan on getting the following.

1 Clutch Plate
1 Slave cylinder
1 seal for slave
1 Tranny seal (good idea from this posting)

also I plan on drilling a small hole in the bottom of th Slave housing.

Any other suggestions. 2 1/2 hours sounds great.... Bet it takes me that long to get the tupperware off. LOL

Thanks
Tim
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post #16 of 25 Old Dec 21st, 2006, 1:42 pm
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Originally Posted by automatim
2 1/2 hours sounds great.... Bet it takes me that long to get the tupperware off. LOL
Better plan on at least a week to do the clutch then. It's not terribly difficult, but is rather invasive as you have to remove the entire lower rear half of the drive train. Not a job for the meek, but it sounds like you may have the general background to do this.

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post #17 of 25 Old Dec 21st, 2006, 2:52 pm
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AutoMatim:
Sorry for your woes, but it is unknown which of the 3 got your clutch (assuming it is fluid) since the trans has to come out the other end of the Trans input shaft (input seal) could also be (need) R/R. That could be the culprit as well as the Trans input shaft (output seal) already on your list (same shaft different ends) Might consider too, the rear engine bearing/seal/c o-ring). Just some thoughts to consider for parts ordering unless you are lucky and have a well stocked dealer there.
I think they should step up to the plate and do a "Good faith" R/R for you (Not far out of Warr)................ after all, it is nearly Christmas!
Thread HiJack, Sorry

Carl

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post #18 of 25 Old Dec 22nd, 2006, 7:05 am
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Do everything you can while you are in there...

Replacing the Clutch Slave and drilling the weephole is minor outpatient surgery compared to replacing the clutch in its entireity. It is a huge job. Be sure to read the manual to ensure that there are not to many BMW "specialty" tools needed to perform the job. They can cost a TON!

You will definately want to check out these thread and PICTURES before diving in:

http://www.bmwlt.com/forums/showthre...t=transmission

http://www.bmwlt.com/forums/showthre...t=transmission

Hope this helps and God bless.

Jack Homesley
Cornelius, NC USA
'06 Goldwing - "The Black Pearl"
Too many others to list...


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post #19 of 25 Old Dec 22nd, 2006, 8:05 am
 
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Thanks for the Links. The pics are going to help alot. Did not realize the Stingray and everything will have to come off. I will become very intamite with my LT. Might as well order my radio accessory cable while I am at it. Also might as well take the speedo out and solder my jumpers.

Sorry if I stole the thread... Just kind of happened. I'll be more thoughtfull next time.

Merry Christmas
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post #20 of 25 Old Dec 22nd, 2006, 7:11 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by automatim
My clutch just started to slip in 3rd 4th and5th Gear. When I Gun it will get up and go but not like it should. I can tell the Motor is turning Faster than it should for the acceleration I am getting. Just called the dealer. My warranty expired on the 3rd of this month. I purchased he bike used and planned on purchasing xtended warranty just put it off 1 month too late... oh well. Dealer wants $1300 to replace clutch and slave. Being a former Auto Tech I decided to buy the $300 worth of parts and do it myself. Before I order the parts I wanted to run it by you PROs. I pan on getting the following.

1 Clutch Plate
1 Slave cylinder
1 seal for slave
1 Tranny seal (good idea from this posting)

also I plan on drilling a small hole in the bottom of th Slave housing.

Any other suggestions. 2 1/2 hours sounds great.... Bet it takes me that long to get the tupperware off. LOL

Thanks
Tim
It will not be 2 1/2 hours the first time you do it. Those of us who have done a couple can accomplish it in about that time, if working alone and not explaining to others what is being done.

There is no seal for the slave, it is a non-repairable item. The only seals you will need for the slave are the four soft metal washers to seal the two hoses that go to it.

If you are pulling the tranny to replace the clutch plate, you should go ahead and replace the engine rear main oil seal and O-ring, and while you are at it, replace ALL the transmission seals, I think there are four of them. Three for sure.

edited: Forgot, you will also need new bolts to hold the clutch assembly cover plate, these should not be reused, and also the large nut and plastic thrust washer for the clutch drive plate on the engine output. That large nut should not be re-used either, and that plastic thrust washer is very easy to break after it has been in use. It gets pretty brittle.

IF you can find a source for a 19X4MM Viton O-ring, I would use that instead of the stock one. The stock gets hard as a rock, and cracks, where many of the engine oil leaks come from. Viton can stand a much higher temperature.

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work...I want to achieve it through not dying.

David Shealey
Dandridge, TN
EX: '01 Black LT, BAT BYKE (Totaled at 110,000 miles)
IBA SS, BB, BBG, 10/10ths.
No bike now, but maybe in the future.

Last edited by dshealey; Dec 22nd, 2006 at 7:23 pm.
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post #21 of 25 Old Dec 22nd, 2006, 7:17 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cccpastorjack
Replacing the Clutch Slave and drilling the weephole is minor outpatient surgery compared to replacing the clutch in its entireity. It is a huge job. Be sure to read the manual to ensure that there are not to many BMW "specialty" tools needed to perform the job. They can cost a TON!

You will definately want to check out these thread and PICTURES before diving in:

http://www.bmwlt.com/forums/showthre...t=transmission

http://www.bmwlt.com/forums/showthre...t=transmission

Hope this helps and God bless.
Several of us have done the full job without any special tools purchased. The only special tool that is really needed is the bar to hold the clutch drive plate from turning when you remove and re-install the large nut holding the drive plate on the rear of the engine output shaft. Several of us have made this tool from a flat bar of aluminum. When you see the picture in the service manual, it is pretty easy to make one yourself.

There is a requirement to torque that nut to a specific torque, then turn it an additional 60 degrees, and BMW has a rather elaborate/expensive tool to do that. Not needed. 60 degrees is exactly one flat on the nut! Torque it, mark the flat position, then turn it until the next flat lines up with the mark. BMW has a way of making simple things complex.

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work...I want to achieve it through not dying.

David Shealey
Dandridge, TN
EX: '01 Black LT, BAT BYKE (Totaled at 110,000 miles)
IBA SS, BB, BBG, 10/10ths.
No bike now, but maybe in the future.
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post #22 of 25 Old Dec 23rd, 2006, 11:58 am
 
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Thanks for the info. I was wondering about the tools listed on the BMW CD I have. You have expained those away. Yesterday I contacted BMW of Chicago and the parts expert set me straight. I asked him to suggest anything that will or might need. He set me up with the bolts, washers, gaskets and seals I need. He even suggested lube for the driveshaft it self. I bought all he wanted to sell. It all came to about $290. I figured that is a savings of $1010.
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post #23 of 25 Old Dec 23rd, 2006, 12:39 pm
 
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What has been the average mileage for the OEM clutch before it needs replacement? I've got 42K now and want to know how much longer I've got before I sell the bike.
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post #24 of 25 Old Dec 23rd, 2006, 2:52 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sofitel505
What has been the average mileage for the OEM clutch before it needs replacement? I've got 42K now and want to know how much longer I've got before I sell the bike.
If it does not get contaminated by oil or brake fluid from leaking seals or slave cylinder, I don't think you will ever wear it out if you ride "normally", and do not do "drop clutch" jackrabbit starts, or a LOT of clutch slipping in slow turns.

There have only been two or three actual burned or worn out clutches posted here in the 5 years I have been on site, and those were either something wrong from the factory, or just badly used.

Barring contamination or awfully hard treatment of the clutch, it will probably go over 200,000 miles. Unfortunately way too many are taken out by leaking seals or slave cylinders.

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work...I want to achieve it through not dying.

David Shealey
Dandridge, TN
EX: '01 Black LT, BAT BYKE (Totaled at 110,000 miles)
IBA SS, BB, BBG, 10/10ths.
No bike now, but maybe in the future.
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post #25 of 25 Old Dec 23rd, 2006, 11:12 pm
 
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Thanks David, that's very good to know. No jackrabbit starts on the LT, got the FJR for that. When replacing the LT slave, I didn't see a trace of any petroleum products and the weep hole is now drilled in case there ever is. Good synthetics everywhere since after breakin, so hopefully that makes for healthy seals regardless.
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