Stiff gearbox in the cold - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 10 Old Dec 18th, 2007, 3:24 pm Thread Starter
 
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Stiff gearbox in the cold

Hi
I have owned my LT for a few months now, and have enjoyed every mile. So much so that i have been riding to work and back every day, even with temps as low as -2 degrees C. With the heated seat and grips it is still such a pleasure to ride.
The last two days the temperature has not risen above 2 degrees and the wind chill makes it feel 10 degrees lower.
When i have come to ride my bike home the gear box has been very stiff, so much so that i could only get first and second on one occasion. After a few minutes it loosened up and drove as normal. The same happened tonight. Do i need to change the gearbox oil? Or is it more serious ??
It does't seem to happen overnight, but the bike is kept in an integral garage. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
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post #2 of 10 Old Dec 18th, 2007, 3:33 pm
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Stiff Shift?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dago
Hi
I have owned my LT for a few months now, and have enjoyed every mile. So much so that i have been riding to work and back every day, even with temps as low as -2 degrees C. With the heated seat and grips it is still such a pleasure to ride.
The last two days the temperature has not risen above 2 degrees and the wind chill makes it feel 10 degrees lower.
When i have come to ride my bike home the gear box has been very stiff, so much so that i could only get first and second on one occasion. After a few minutes it loosened up and drove as normal. The same happened tonight. Do i need to change the gearbox oil? Or is it more serious ??
It does't seem to happen overnight, but the bike is kept in an integral garage. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
Depending on age/mileage, I would lube the shifting Mechanisms first?

Bill Jennings, fhp
Denison, TX

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post #3 of 10 Old Dec 18th, 2007, 4:52 pm
 
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Question

Do you know what transmission oil weight is installed now? 75w-140w or 80w-90w? Synthetic or Dino? Like motor oil, you may have to go to a lighter weight transmission oil during the winter months. If it was dealer installed, you can contact the dealer and they should have what was installed on file. Or at least recommend what you should be running for this time of the year based on your location.

May we never find the end of the road!

Perry Ridgway

oknplm




Quote:
Originally Posted by Dago
Hi
I have owned my LT for a few months now, and have enjoyed every mile. So much so that i have been riding to work and back every day, even with temps as low as -2 degrees C. With the heated seat and grips it is still such a pleasure to ride.
The last two days the temperature has not risen above 2 degrees and the wind chill makes it feel 10 degrees lower.
When i have come to ride my bike home the gear box has been very stiff, so much so that i could only get first and second on one occasion. After a few minutes it loosened up and drove as normal. The same happened tonight. Do i need to change the gearbox oil? Or is it more serious ??
It does't seem to happen overnight, but the bike is kept in an integral garage. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
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post #4 of 10 Old Dec 18th, 2007, 6:56 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oknplm
Do you know what transmission oil weight is installed now? 75w-140w or 80w-90w? Synthetic or Dino? Like motor oil, you may have to go to a lighter weight transmission oil during the winter months. If it was dealer installed, you can contact the dealer and they should have what was installed on file. Or at least recommend what you should be running for this time of the year based on your location.

May we never find the end of the road!

Perry Ridgway

oknplm
What he said.

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Rider of Stahlross
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post #5 of 10 Old Dec 18th, 2007, 7:00 pm
 
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Perry might have a point. For motorcycles that sit in very cold weather, some engine and transmission oils could gel up. Some people have even put their oils in the freezer and were shocked that some would not flow when removed. You can check the pour point of most oils from the Typical Property Data Sheet that many oil companies list, or you can call them for that information.

I've used Amsoil Synthetic 75W90 Severe Gear Lube in my LT's transmission and final drive in below freezing temperatures without a problem. It has a pour point of -50C. An example of a conventional gear oil is Castrol AP 85W140 Gear lubricant has a pour point of -15C. Synthetics will generally outperform conventional oils in cold weather performance.
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post #6 of 10 Old Dec 19th, 2007, 8:40 am
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I've used BMW synthetic in the transmission and rear drive of my LT since new. The shifting is much improved in cold temps and warm.

Put a bottle of conventional 80w-90 outside overnight at freezing temps and try to shake it up the next morning. It will just barely move.

If you are still using 20w-50 in those temps in the engine you should go to a lighter weight of oil. If I recall, 20w-50 is not approved for use below 32f.
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post #7 of 10 Old Dec 19th, 2007, 8:51 am
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I would have to agree on trying a synthetic of your choice in the gear box and FD.

I have to change mine as I ride year long here in Pennsatucky. I run 10-40 motor oil and 75-90 gear/FD in winter. I then use 90/140 and 20/50 in the summer.

I also think an inspection of your shift linkage is good advice. Even if it is not the issue, from the stress you appear to be putting on it may cause an issue if all joint/links are not tight and lubed well.

I hope you get it sorted out.

Lee
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post #8 of 10 Old Dec 19th, 2007, 9:28 am
 
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I run Amsoil synthetic motorcycle oil 20W50 year round. It has a pour point of -39C. I have been toying with the idea of switching to their 10W40 year round to get more gas mileage and horsepower. But will wait until the warranty runs out. Anybody else do this and did you notice any differences?
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post #9 of 10 Old Dec 19th, 2007, 10:47 am Thread Starter
 
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Many thanks for all the advice.

Many thanks for all thae advice.
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post #10 of 10 Old Dec 19th, 2007, 10:58 am
 
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Dago,

I've been reading that pour point depressants that are added to conventional oils lose their effectiveness over time and will make the pour point temperature even higher. If you do change out your transmission fluid, you might try to freeze the old oil and see how it pours. Then you will have your definitive answer. Keep us posted!

Also for those who are using 40 weight motor oils, make sure to use one that does not shear to a 30 weight, or you could void your warranty if the oil fails. Most of them do shear to a 30 weight as do automotive oils. The Amsoil website has a good report on motorcycle oils and you can see which ones shear and which ones don't.
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