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  Topic Review (Newest First)
May 19th, 2019 2:58 pm
PadG
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

If there was a service bulletin, then BMW must have known about the problem!
May 19th, 2019 11:09 am
Bubblehead
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

I forgot to mention that this was NOT called a recal, but was called a service bulletin (or something like that).
May 19th, 2019 7:48 am
Bubblehead
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beemer tiger View Post
First of all, welcome to our forum! So far, this has been an interesting conversation, (some of it over my head). Your post caught my attention by the statement "BMW PAID THE PRICE TO R&R!!!"

What bike do you have? Has yours been dealer serviced exclusively? Who initiated the discussion of the repair? Interested in knowing more details of how this transaction came about?
I have a 2016 R1200RT-LC. It has been serviced exclusively at my local dealer, however I bought it at another dealer
I brought my bike in to replace the front tire and the service manger mentioned the loud tapping from the left side. They opened it up and called to tell me the cam was bad They ordered the parts and contacted BMW to get the OK. Apparently it took a few calls to get BMW to pony up, but they did.
I have an extended warranty, but it was not used.
Good luck if you have this problem
Karl
May 18th, 2019 2:42 pm
LAF
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beemer tiger View Post
First of all, welcome to our forum! So far, this has been an interesting conversation, (some of it over my head). Your post caught my attention by the statement "BMW PAID THE PRICE TO R&R!!!"

What bike do you have? Has yours been dealer serviced exclusively? Who initiated the discussion of the repair? Interested in knowing more details of how this transaction came about?
+1 to all the above.
May 18th, 2019 9:10 am
Beemer tiger
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bubblehead View Post
Cams replaced at 45424 miles when dealer decided they were too noisy. Never out of spec at each 12K service. BMW paid the price to R&R. I see no difference in the way the bike runs.
First of all, welcome to our forum! So far, this has been an interesting conversation, (some of it over my head). Your post caught my attention by the statement "BMW PAID THE PRICE TO R&R!!!"

What bike do you have? Has yours been dealer serviced exclusively? Who initiated the discussion of the repair? Interested in knowing more details of how this transaction came about?
May 18th, 2019 7:32 am
PadG
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by LAF View Post
Yes I forget how little I know and understand on metallurgy. See I was thinking they would grind the cam and then harden it. I would never think to harden then grind, as to my though process it would make the process harder to grind once hardened.

I guess my question is why not use a strong enough steel to not need to harden the cam lobes in the first place?

I guess that would be a pretty big diameter rod of steel when you consider the dia. of a cam shaft. But with the cutting technology of today and loosing one process in the production I would think it would be about a wash.

Hell I dont know, it just is a shame there is always some defect that gets swept under the rug and consumers pay the price.

I mean unless the guy ran his motor dry a cam should be replaced no matter when it goes south. I do not see a cam as a wear item. I mean we al know we are talking valves and seats wearing tight on our 12K valve checks, it is not supposed to be cam lobes.

Well except for these new "Casper Cams."
You should know that when the steel gets hardened, there are two things that will happen. First, more true for this case, the localized heating and shock cooling of just a section of the part can produce distortion of the part. That is corrected in grinding the cam to the specific shape and tolerances after heat treating. You will find this to be true for any parts that requires hardening. Secondly, the hardening process, regardless of types, will generally make the part larger than what it was before hardening. I won't bore you with the whys, but if you want to know, just ask. This is also corrected by machining after hardening. These 2 statements are generalization, because nowadays, there are so many excellent tool steels available with all sorts of properties, and you will find at least one one that will be the exception to what I said above. The one that comes to mind right away is a tool steel that I had often used, in my previous life , which is A2 tool steel. It is one of the "air-quenching" steel, and needs to go through a relatively complex treatment in an oven, after which it is left to cool down in air. This stuff will maintain it's dimension exactly after the heat treatment, and so no additional machining is required after hardening.


Grinding - grinding is very much more effective with harder materials than with soft! Soft material, like mild steel as an example, will easily clog up a grinding wheel!


Strong steel - hardening will increase the strength of metal, but when you are talking about steel, you will find that most of the time, the main reason for hardening is not for increased in strength, but to provide wear resistance! However, there is one material property that most lay-person do not think of, besides strength, and that is toughness! A steel that is through-hardened, like the A2 that I mentioned above will attain that wear resistance hardness after processing, gain strength, but have significant loss in toughness. What it mean is that, after heat treating, the part may shatter when subjected to a large impact, whereas the same part before hardening will merely deflect or bend instead of shattering. We can have both hard surface and good toughness by processes that just harden the outer surface of the steel, while leaving the inner "core" soft (relatively speaking, of course) and ductile. That is why components that might be subjected to impact loads are heat-treated this way. Camshaft; crankshaft; balls, rollers, and the bearing races are just some of the examples. On top of that, the process is quite inexpensive as compared to the process for through hardening.


OK, that should be enough to bore you guys to tear!!! Just ask, if you want more information.
May 18th, 2019 7:12 am
Bubblehead
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Cams replaced at 45424 miles when dealer decided they were too noisy. Never out of spec at each 12K service. BMW paid the price to R&R. I see no difference in the way the bike runs.
May 17th, 2019 5:54 pm
LAF
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ponch View Post
It's like when the pulleys on my throttle bodies broke. I was told I was an outlier and no one had that problem. Now we're seeing it a whole lot more. BMW uses a lot of plastic in their car engines too that have problems. I have to wonder who the heck makes these decisions to use materials/methods/vendors where stuff ain't up to snuff. Maybe it's built in obsolescence, maybe it's it's malignant frugality to save a penny. IDK, but we end up paying.
We are going to the National this year. Patricia on her Kawasaki "Mean Green" Vulcan 650 S, her father(who is 85) on his 15 RT, and me on my 17.5 GS.

So I am prepping Patricia's bike and the thing I notice is just about everything is metal. I mean it is pretty glaring difference.

I just had the GS naked and I swear I used more SP 303 and very little wax/quick shine. I mean I spay everything plastic with SP 303 in hopes of keeping UV and heat from breaking all the plastic down. The intake tubes were dry as heck. Very little metal on these bikes.

I am probably pissing money in the wind but I do it. I have used this for many years and never had a bad reaction from it on any dash, tires, or plastic I have used it on.

https://www.303products.com.au/
May 17th, 2019 5:37 pm
LAF
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by PadG View Post
It is clear to me that whoever is making the camshaft have a poor process control, and the hardening process can vary to yield the result that you have seen. BTW, don't think of that hard case as being uniform. It probably isn't, and when the production grinding processes is completed, you could have just a very thin case left, or even have parches of soft material exposed. When it's done properly, you should have a thin hard case all around to prevent wears.
Yes I forget how little I know and understand on metallurgy. See I was thinking they would grind the cam and then harden it. I would never think to harden then grind, as to my though process it would make the process harder to grind once hardened.

I guess my question is why not use a strong enough steel to not need to harden the cam lobes in the first place?

I guess that would be a pretty big diameter rod of steel when you consider the dia. of a cam shaft. But with the cutting technology of today and loosing one process in the production I would think it would be about a wash.

Hell I dont know, it just is a shame there is always some defect that gets swept under the rug and consumers pay the price.

I mean unless the guy ran his motor dry a cam should be replaced no matter when it goes south. I do not see a cam as a wear item. I mean we al know we are talking valves and seats wearing tight on our 12K valve checks, it is not supposed to be cam lobes.

Well except for these new "Casper Cams."
May 17th, 2019 8:02 am
Ponch
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by LAF View Post
"So, with this defect, you will find taht the cam lobes will wear very quickly right away, as reported. It's my opinion that if you had checked the condition of your cam lobes at the 12k miles servicing, when you do the valve clearance check, you are probably quite safe. Just my guess!"

I had thought that also. Except we have a guy with 51K here. And the one I showed was after a 24K service. So the heat treatment is unpredictable at to where the cams took the heat treating and where it does not. I have seen and I think one picture shows only on cam lobe of the two was affected. It is really a shame that there may be a time bomb ticking in these bikes.

Again not a lot of these showing up but enough. And again not everyone is on "The Net". So there could be many more of these worldwide we will never know about. As a "informed" group we (I) forget there are probably a lot more issues that people have but are never recorded on a Forum.
It's like when the pulleys on my throttle bodies broke. I was told I was an outlier and no one had that problem. Now we're seeing it a whole lot more. BMW uses a lot of plastic in their car engines too that have problems. I have to wonder who the heck makes these decisions to use materials/methods/vendors where stuff ain't up to snuff. Maybe it's built in obsolescence, maybe it's it's malignant frugality to save a penny. IDK, but we end up paying.
May 17th, 2019 7:46 am
PadG
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by LAF View Post
"So, with this defect, you will find taht the cam lobes will wear very quickly right away, as reported. It's my opinion that if you had checked the condition of your cam lobes at the 12k miles servicing, when you do the valve clearance check, you are probably quite safe. Just my guess!"

I had thought that also. Except we have a guy with 51K here. And the one I showed was after a 24K service. So the heat treatment is unpredictable at to where the cams took the heat treating and where it does not. I have seen and I think one picture shows only on cam lobe of the two was affected. It is really a shame that there may be a time bomb ticking in these bikes.

Again not a lot of these showing up but enough. And again not everyone is on "The Net". So there could be many more of these worldwide we will never know about. As a "informed" group we (I) forget there are probably a lot more issues that people have but are never recorded on a Forum.
It is clear to me that whoever is making the camshaft have a poor process control, and the hardening process can vary to yield the result that you have seen. BTW, don't think of that hard case as being uniform. It probably isn't, and when the production grinding processes is completed, you could have just a very thin case left, or even have parches of soft material exposed. When it's done properly, you should have a thin hard case all around to prevent wears.
May 17th, 2019 7:40 am
PadG
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ponch View Post
They have to go through the oil pump first and that's got to be bad for the pump over time.
I haven't taken an RT apart, Ponch, but generally the oil pump is usually a positive displacement gear type pump. That sucker will chew up almost anything!
May 17th, 2019 7:34 am
PadG
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by rtwiz View Post
OK, here's the thing. If the cam lobes flake, the flakes run down with oil into the bottom of the engine. If they're not filtered by the pickup screen in the oil inlet and they're not stuck to the magnet in the oil filler plug, then they still have to travel through the oil filter before they can muck up any oil passages. So...I think the possibility of flakes plugging up an oil passage and running a bearing dry are pretty remote.

Second thing, to find out if the wear problem is the cam not being hardened or the cam just not getting any oil, you just need to do a hardness test of the cam lobe. If the oil ran out, the surface should be pretty hard due to excessive heat. It should also look blue, at least in places. This really does look like the hardening process failed.

I have seen flaking cam lobes on Ducati 718's from the 90's. They were pitted and had visible flaking. I think it was from wrong metal chemistry or maybe too much hardening? It was pretty ugly!

I would bet both of the cams in the photos above are just plain not heat treated. A simple Rockwell hardness test would confirm that. The fact that there appears to be no scoring or other signs of a no oil condition tell me that. BMW should pay for repair of that....and should verify that the replacement cam(s) is/are of the correct hardness before putting them in the bike.
Thank you for the post! Perfect example of guesses and assumptions that I had mentioned in earlier post!


You are probably right that the chance of the oil passage getting even partially clogged up is fairly low, but it is possible. Based on the photo that Lee had posted, you can see that there is a good amount of metal missing, just after 800 miles. NOT all of that will be in flake form, and lots of it will pass into the oil filter. Now, give some thought to the filter! What happen when the filter gets clogged up and internal pressure builds to a specific point? Why, the bypass pop, and the oil is circulated without being filtered!


and running a bearing dry - seem that you don't know how journal bearing works! When in operation, there are NO metal-to-metal contact in a journal bearing! The pin (part of the crank) is floating on pressurized oil film, and kept separated from the very soft bearing materials. There is a continuous flow of oil through the length of the bearing, because both ends are wide open. If the oil flow stops or slow down, the pressure will drop, bearing components will make contact, and you can kiss the bearing good bye in a minute or so, depending on how fast the engine was running at the time! Think about it. If you step inside the cockpit of a race car or high performance street car, you will see that one of the gauge that will be in that cockpit is the oil pressure gauge. Why is that?


you just need to do a hardness test of the cam lobe. A simple Rockwell hardness test would confirm that. - you don't seem to know anything about hardness testing and assumed that it can be done on the hardness of a hardened case (or shell, to a lay person). It cannot. Neither the Rockwell tester nor other types can give the hardness of a thin shell. Just the nature of the beast!! The best that you can do was, as suggested, to run a file over the surface to see if it's hard or not.


too much hardening - another assumption that too much hardening will cause the material to be "harder"! Not so. Forged steel, when flame-hardened will either gets hard or will not. The material must reach or exceed certain temperature and then quickly shock-cooled before it will get hard, otherwise it will remain unchanged! Go and Google flame hardening. I don't know what you will find, but I am sure that you will learn something! BTW, the flakes are most likely the hardened "case" of the material. I had explained in my earlier post as to what happen in the hardening process.
May 17th, 2019 6:00 am
LAF
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

"So, with this defect, you will find taht the cam lobes will wear very quickly right away, as reported. It's my opinion that if you had checked the condition of your cam lobes at the 12k miles servicing, when you do the valve clearance check, you are probably quite safe. Just my guess!"

I had thought that also. Except we have a guy with 51K here. And the one I showed was after a 24K service. So the heat treatment is unpredictable at to where the cams took the heat treating and where it does not. I have seen and I think one picture shows only on cam lobe of the two was affected. It is really a shame that there may be a time bomb ticking in these bikes.

Again not a lot of these showing up but enough. And again not everyone is on "The Net". So there could be many more of these worldwide we will never know about. As a "informed" group we (I) forget there are probably a lot more issues that people have but are never recorded on a Forum.
May 16th, 2019 11:09 pm
Ponch
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by rtwiz View Post
OK, here's the thing. If the cam lobes flake, the flakes run down with oil into the bottom of the engine. If they're not filtered by the pickup screen in the oil inlet and they're not stuck to the magnet in the oil filler plug, then they still have to travel through the oil filter before they can muck up any oil passages. So...I think the possibility of flakes plugging up an oil passage and running a bearing dry are pretty remote.

Second thing, to find out if the wear problem is the cam not being hardened or the cam just not getting any oil, you just need to do a hardness test of the cam lobe. If the oil ran out, the surface should be pretty hard due to excessive heat. It should also look blue, at least in places. This really does look like the hardening process failed.

I have seen flaking cam lobes on Ducati 718's from the 90's. They were pitted and had visible flaking. I think it was from wrong metal chemistry or maybe too much hardening? It was pretty ugly!

I would bet both of the cams in the photos above are just plain not heat treated. A simple Rockwell hardness test would confirm that. The fact that there appears to be no scoring or other signs of a no oil condition tell me that. BMW should pay for repair of that....and should verify that the replacement cam(s) is/are of the correct hardness before putting them in the bike.
They have to go through the oil pump first and that's got to be bad for the pump over time.
May 16th, 2019 7:55 pm
niel_petersen
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

A quick hardness test is to see if the existing cam is file hard. You should not be able to get a metal file to bite material off the face of any cam.
May 16th, 2019 5:51 pm
rtwiz
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by PadG View Post
You will have real issue if those flakes blocks the drilled oil ways through the crankshaft to feed the main (journal) bearings!
OK, here's the thing. If the cam lobes flake, the flakes run down with oil into the bottom of the engine. If they're not filtered by the pickup screen in the oil inlet and they're not stuck to the magnet in the oil filler plug, then they still have to travel through the oil filter before they can muck up any oil passages. So...I think the possibility of flakes plugging up an oil passage and running a bearing dry are pretty remote.

Second thing, to find out if the wear problem is the cam not being hardened or the cam just not getting any oil, you just need to do a hardness test of the cam lobe. If the oil ran out, the surface should be pretty hard due to excessive heat. It should also look blue, at least in places. This really does look like the hardening process failed.

I have seen flaking cam lobes on Ducati 718's from the 90's. They were pitted and had visible flaking. I think it was from wrong metal chemistry or maybe too much hardening? It was pretty ugly!

I would bet both of the cams in the photos above are just plain not heat treated. A simple Rockwell hardness test would confirm that. The fact that there appears to be no scoring or other signs of a no oil condition tell me that. BMW should pay for repair of that....and should verify that the replacement cam(s) is/are of the correct hardness before putting them in the bike.
May 14th, 2019 8:17 am
Ponch
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by LAF View Post
As far as how often this is happening who knows? As with FD, and ABS blocks, and blown seals leading to blown clutches, HES sensors, out of time cams, bad switch gear, fuel strips, and all the other loving quirks of the brand. It really is not a big deal, until it happens to you
And some of these are more than isolated instances. What's more frustrating is the response from BMW with some of them, meaning, what problem? Now we're starting to see more and more throttle pulleys self destructing on hex heads. I was an early adopter. "First we've heard of it" until I went to the NHTSA.
May 14th, 2019 7:52 am
PadG
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Clark View Post
All points well taken, thanks. Have a picture of the cam stil on engine. Smoothly and evenly worn. All others look and gap fine.

Anyone know how to upload pics?
Very easy, but perhaps you don't have sufficient posting to UL?


In any case, when you start a reply, just scroll to the bottom of the window and you will see where you can attach files. Actually, you can drag-and-drop in the specified area just below the text pane!
May 14th, 2019 7:48 am
PadG
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

You will have real issue if those flakes blocks the drilled oil ways through the crankshaft to feed the main (journal) bearings!
May 14th, 2019 5:27 am
LAF
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

On the second picture and instance I posted Jim said the guy said he did not really notice a loss of power.

I would think you would notice it but not all people drive the same.

As far as your oil filter it is there to take out impurities for sure. From what I saw this is not turning into a graphite paste but rather flakes which appear to break down but where and how would be a mystery. A flake on a cylinder wall or hung up on a ring on a piston could be a issue.

As far as how often this is happening who knows? As with FD, and ABS blocks, and blown seals leading to blown clutches, HES sensors, out of time cams, bad switch gear, fuel strips, and all the other loving quirks of the brand. It really is not a big deal, until it happens to you
May 13th, 2019 6:31 pm
hool119
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

I was curious if anyone noticed their bike running poorly or if the problem was observed while doing maintenance and were the valves out of adjustment another indication?

Thank you
May 13th, 2019 11:19 am
Ponch
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by realshelby View Post
Again, just like with the stators, we are worrying about something that has such a small failure rate that it should be no issue. Yes, check your cam lobes when you check your valve clearance. You do that, don't you?

While there is paranoia about this metal being in the oil and causing catastrophic failure of the engine, the facts are not there in any case to back any of that up. I have seen plenty of metal from parts failure in engines that were "repaired" and run a full lifetime after that. That is what your oil filter is for. That is what the oil sump does too, it allows larger particles to stay in the bottom.

An 800 mile failure is one thing. A failure at 50,000 miles? Still a problem with the parts in some way. But I would replace them. Run the bike for a few miles then drop the oil when hot and fill with new oil and filter. And never worry about it again.
And the oil has to go through the oil pump before it's filtered.
May 13th, 2019 10:52 am
Matt Clark All points well taken, thanks. Have a picture of the cam stil on engine. Smoothly and evenly worn. All others look and gap fine.

Anyone know how to upload pics?
May 13th, 2019 9:06 am
PadG
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

I agree fully with Terry's post above! Based on what I read in the above posts, I can see that there are many guesses and assumptions around how the lobes that do fail. Yes, inadequate heat-treating is the root cause, but not in the way that most, or all of you are thinking! I should have provided more details, but quite frankly, I thought that it would only be boring, plus I didn't feel like getting into the lecture mode! So, let me explain by giving you the steps in the manufacturing process foe the camshaft, and dwell on the steps that are the root-cause of this defect:


1. The camshaft starts out as a piece of forged steel.


2. The forging is machined to shape, but some materials are left on the cam lobe surfaces for final machining (rough and finish grind).


3. The camshaft undergoes,what we old-timers calls "flame-hardening", which is a surface-hardening process, and NOT a through hardening as many of you are thinking! The process is applied to just the cam lobes. Many decades ago, a flame would have been played over the surfaces, and then quenched with water. Nowadays, induction coils are used to provide the heating. Induction heating occurs only on the surface layer, just like the flame, and the inner material will be heated via thermal conduction, and so TIME is an important factor as to how deep the temperature gradient extends. Keep this last part in mind! Water quenching, in today's process, is done with sudden spray of water onto the heated surfaces. Hardening of the steel occurs ONLY where the steel had reached, or exceed certain temperature and then quenched, otherwise the material will stay "soft". What I am trying to say is that, after the process, there will be a hardened shell (case) of some small thickness over the "softer" steel forging. The thickness of this hardened shell will depend on how long the heating had been applied to the surface of the steel. Keep this in mind as well!


4. Rough and finish grind to bring the dimensions of the cam lobes to specifications. Certain amount of material is ground away in this process, and this is where one can have issues IF the hardening process had been inadequate to provide sufficient thickness to the hard shell! If the shell is too thin, the grinding processes would grind away all of the hard surface material, and leaving the softer inner material exposed to wear! The defect in NOT visually detectable.



5. The lobe surfaces are polished to provide smooth surfaces.


So, with this defect, you will find taht the cam lobes will wear very quickly right away, as reported. It's my opinion that if you had checked the condition of your cam lobes at the 12k miles servicing, when you do the valve clearance check, you are probably quite safe. Just my guess!
May 13th, 2019 6:45 am
realshelby
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Again, just like with the stators, we are worrying about something that has such a small failure rate that it should be no issue. Yes, check your cam lobes when you check your valve clearance. You do that, don't you?

While there is paranoia about this metal being in the oil and causing catastrophic failure of the engine, the facts are not there in any case to back any of that up. I have seen plenty of metal from parts failure in engines that were "repaired" and run a full lifetime after that. That is what your oil filter is for. That is what the oil sump does too, it allows larger particles to stay in the bottom.

An 800 mile failure is one thing. A failure at 50,000 miles? Still a problem with the parts in some way. But I would replace them. Run the bike for a few miles then drop the oil when hot and fill with new oil and filter. And never worry about it again.
May 12th, 2019 6:22 pm
jzeiler
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by NoelCP View Post
If lobes were properly hardened and oil supply is always sufficient how long *should* cam lobes remain in properly functioning condition?
No one has answered this so I will say "indefinitely". I have seen many BMW engines with 100-200 K on them and the cams looked like new. My LT showed absolutely no measurable wear at 112 K on her cams. They are just not considered a wear item. Valve adjustments are required as the valve seats wear for the most part.
May 12th, 2019 2:16 pm
Ponch
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by dlong0609 View Post
In all fairness to both the dealer and BMWNA, most of the difficulty was caused by the default minimum response time of 1 week from the mothership. Also, I was never able to communicate directly with the decision maker. I did reject the initial offer of a small cash settlement plus the repaired bike. It seemed to help my case that BMWNA was aware of previous BMW purchases dating back to 1973, and that I never wavered from my demand to receive what I had paid for: a new machine free of major defects. I had the original bike for about 3 weeks. The additional amount I paid for the second bike was less than the rental cost of an R1200RT LC for the same period of time. I did miss about 1 month of prime riding weather. It's unclear to me who took the larger haircut on the deal...possibly me.
With only 800 miles on it, you shouldn't have had to pay for anything.
May 12th, 2019 2:13 pm
Ponch
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by LAF View Post

I have never seen any car with bad cams.

.
I have. SBC. more than one. Not often, but it has happened and on higher mileage stock engines when they had flat hydraulic tappets. The Chevy 5.3 LS engines that are all aluminum and have AFM have had their share of valve problems too, not to mention oil burning.
May 12th, 2019 1:56 pm
gary45
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by LAF View Post
Well from what has been explained to me there is no rhyme or reason to the flaking of the lobes.



I just cant see any car company in 10,000 miles with your cam lobes gone say hey we gonna change the oil and slap in some new cams in and have you out in two hours.
General Motors had soft cams in the 305's and 350's back around 1970, everyone I know who had a Chevy had to have motor repaired by 60,000 miles, very expensive repair. They would start getting noisy earlier, you could wait till they got fairly noisy. Cams replaced oil changed, GM did not warranty them.
May 12th, 2019 1:51 pm
dlong0609
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by dlong0609 View Post
The cams shown in LAF's post came from my '18 RT with less than 800 miles on the odometer
In all fairness to both the dealer and BMWNA, most of the difficulty was caused by the default minimum response time of 1 week from the mothership. Also, I was never able to communicate directly with the decision maker. I did reject the initial offer of a small cash settlement plus the repaired bike. It seemed to help my case that BMWNA was aware of previous BMW purchases dating back to 1973, and that I never wavered from my demand to receive what I had paid for: a new machine free of major defects. I had the original bike for about 3 weeks. The additional amount I paid for the second bike was less than the rental cost of an R1200RT LC for the same period of time. I did miss about 1 month of prime riding weather. It's unclear to me who took the larger haircut on the deal...possibly me.
May 12th, 2019 1:35 pm
LAF
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Well from what has been explained to me there is no rhyme or reason to the flaking of the lobes.

I would think hey not hardened, few strokes around against the cam follower and they would show. Not how it happens. It can be layers or veins, or both as it is what area is and is not hardened. So the disintegration can take any form at any time.

And there are different levels of hardening.

There are many guys here who will splain this.

I used Woods cams in my Harley's and I never heard of a cam of theirs going bad. I have never seen any car with bad cams. So a proper cam should out last just about any component in your bike.

I wonder what is going to happen to a 1250 when a couple of lobes wear on the same shaft? Or it starts sucking up some cam lobe powder lubricant into that shift motor?

I was asked when I checked Cam Timing to start nailing cam lobes for this very issue. In 31 bikes I have NEVER felt or seen this issue.

These are the only two I have pics of, and then we have the OP with 51K on the clock so while not huge numbers it says to me there are more to come.

Three we know of is not a panic but I know if it happens to me the bike will be fixed and gone and my last BMW.

I just cant see any car company in 10,000 miles with your cam lobes gone say hey we gonna change the oil and slap in some new cams in and have you out in two hours.
May 12th, 2019 9:33 am
NoelCP
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by dlong0609 View Post
I had the same concern and refused to accept the bike after the cams had been replaced. After a difficult negotiation with BMWNA and with support of the dealer, I received a new RT but did have to contribute an additional sum, which I found reasonable. I plan to check the cams with each oil change.
How many miles on your original bike? I would love to hear more about the 'difficult negotiation' in case I have to go there some day!
May 12th, 2019 9:27 am
NoelCP
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

I wonder at what point (i.e., how many miles OTC) can one conclude cam lobes did not suffer from inadequate hardening? Seems like that ought to rear its head fairly quickly, but I guess it's all a matter of degree (of insufficient hardening). If lobes were properly hardened and oil supply is always sufficient how long *should* cam lobes remain in properly functioning condition?
May 12th, 2019 9:11 am
dlong0609
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ponch View Post
Gotta wonder if having that metal floating around in the oil is not such a good thing.
I had the same concern and refused to accept the bike after the cams had been replaced. After a difficult negotiation with BMWNA and with support of the dealer, I received a new RT but did have to contribute an additional sum, which I found reasonable. I plan to check the cams with each oil change.
May 11th, 2019 7:29 pm
Ponch
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Gotta wonder if having that metal floating around in the oil is not such a good thing.
May 11th, 2019 5:16 pm
LAF
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

My issue with this is like the OP found his at 51K, another 12K, another ?K. So there is no real protection from this issue.

Buying used this could rear it's ugly head at any time. It is a unknown percent that are afflicted.

I am wondering if BMWNA is going to cover the cost of cams and the dealer is going to charge labor and oil/filter for doing it?

Please let us know the outcome.
May 11th, 2019 3:52 pm
Beemer tiger
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by PadG View Post
This is a very clear case of poor QA and production process control. The part is surface hardened, usually via induction coils and then water quenched as part of the manufacturing process. You will get this defect if either the induction coils had turned off early (or failed to turn on) or the water-spray quenching was cut off too soon.


Improper oil supply to the cam area would not cause anything like this, even after a very high mileage! Furthermore, look at how oil gets delivered to the camshaft area! Not much could go wrong there.
Well...from an old Vietnam war veteran, who returned and went against family tradition, got a college education...(psychology of all things), but spent years as a seat of the pants engineer...I found myself knowing a little about lots of things, but not much about anything. Now that you know my qualifications (lack of) I'll share some things I learned to support PadG regarding the heat treating process.

Heat treating & metallurgy has come a long way from the crude coal-fired blacksmith forges of yesteryear. I have no clue of just how these motorcycle cams are done but I have had manufacturing customers with some pretty sophisticated heat treating equipment that produced some complex parts with variable heat treated surfaces giving components hardened wear points and a different heat treat zone in the same component to withstand a different type stress force.

I recall a very high-end tool manufacturer who's employee union called a strike. Management manned the heat treat process, but they failed to notice that before going on strike the employees sabotaged the settings. Suddenly, production workers all over the nation were flooding industrial suppliers with complaints about the tools shattering and breaking due to improper heat treat. It was a mess.

Like PadG says, if these cams are induction zone heat treated, a blip in the induction equipment could cause a batch of cams with improper heat treat. If a few escape detection of the quality control police, they could very well end up in your bike. If that's the case, BMW should make their customers whole and go after their supplier to cover their costs.
May 11th, 2019 1:23 pm
PadG
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

This is a very clear case of poor QA and production process control. The part is surface hardened, usually via induction coils and then water quenched as part of the manufacturing process. You will get this defect if either the induction coils had turned off early (or failed to turn on) or the water-spray quenching was cut off too soon.


Improper oil supply to the cam area would not cause anything like this, even after a very high mileage! Furthermore, look at how oil gets delivered to the camshaft area! Not much could go wrong there.
May 11th, 2019 12:11 pm
LAF
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Here is another. Look at that real good. It had just had a 12K performed at the dealer from what I understand. Now we all know we check valves every 12K.



Picture Credit JVB Productions
May 11th, 2019 10:16 am
bmwcoolk1200
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by dlong0609 View Post
The cams shown in LAF's post came from my '18 RT with less than 800 miles on the odometer. The dealer performed a dyno breakin and oil/filter change the day I took delivery. I performed a second oil and filter change at 600 miles. The defect was discovered by the dealer who was investigating a no-start issue caused by loosening of the cam position sensor. If the problem was caused by inadequate oil supply, cam failure would be much more common. I agree with the improper hardening theory.
I was just stating what it looked like to me. I accept the lack of hardening as a plausible cause. If it failed in 800 miles, then I suspect almost no hardening at all At 51K, it would have to have had some treatment. Possibly a defictive machine or process or a cost saving method implemented by the MFG with the above results. Kia i believe had a recent issue where manufacturing debris was not properly cleaned out and could block oil passages causing engine failure. That was a recall as this should have been IMO. Clearly a defective part.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=igYqVEOJTHI
May 11th, 2019 9:59 am
dlong0609
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

The cams shown in LAF's post came from my '18 RT with less than 800 miles on the odometer. The dealer performed a dyno breakin and oil/filter change the day I took delivery. I performed a second oil and filter change at 600 miles. The defect was discovered by the dealer who was investigating a no-start issue caused by loosening of the cam position sensor. If the problem was caused by inadequate oil supply, cam failure would be much more common. I agree with the improper hardening theory.
May 11th, 2019 8:54 am
Chieflonghair
Quote:
Originally Posted by PadG View Post
Concur fully with Lee!
Mine is a early 2014 and I have yet to even need to re-shim...at 94K...still in specs...I wonder if BMW changed the source for the cam at some point????...anyone know?
May 11th, 2019 7:30 am
PadG
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Concur fully with Lee!
May 11th, 2019 5:10 am
LAF
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmwcoolk1200 View Post
If Matt's look like those pictured, I would say the oil system ( not the oil ) is inadequate for the cams. It looks like those were running dry.
No. It is BMW screwed the pooch on hardening the cams and messed up. There are MANY cases of this. I guess whoever made the cam lobes for BMW messed up.

I looked for a pic i had of one where the entire center of the lobes were gone the width of the cam follower I could nor find it.

From what I understand it flakes and according to BMW poses no threat to the various oil channels on the bike. I call BS but I am a prick and very suspicious. But 5W oil would suggest little room for a 1/4 pound of ground cam
May 10th, 2019 11:09 pm
bmwcoolk1200
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Quote:
Originally Posted by LAF View Post
There have been many instances of cam failures in GS and RT bikes.

BMW should change that cam and do an oil change to cover it. I know in warrenty bikes they do that but I think they should goodwill it pretty quickly.

If Matt's look like those pictured, I would say the oil system ( not the oil ) is inadequate for the cams. It looks like those were running dry.
May 10th, 2019 6:59 pm
LAF
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

There have been many instances of cam failures in GS and RT bikes.

BMW should change that cam and do an oil change to cover it. I know in warrenty bikes they do that but I think they should goodwill it pretty quickly.

May 10th, 2019 5:13 pm
jzeiler
Re: WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Are you talking about the valve clearance or the actual cam lobe measurements. Very unusual for a cam lobe to wear at all.
May 10th, 2019 5:07 pm
Matt Clark
WORNOUT CAM LOBE

Hey all. Have 2017RT with 51k miles. Right front intake cam lobe wore down about 3-4mm. Rest are all still in spec. Was good at 25k—last check. Anyone had similar problem?

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