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Discussion Starter #1
The bad news is in. Two cylinders are low because of carbon build up in the seals.

They might have her done by the middle of next week; around 2K to get her running again.

The theory is that the Iridium plugs I used are cooler burning that the BMW ones, AND, I don't run the engine at high enough RPM--it's rare that I'm up around 5K RPM. I'm guessing the normal oil leakage past the rings for morning start ups contribute to this?

While the head is off they will finally take a look at the the short travel of the clutch lever.

While $2-4K is a set back, I'll have more confidence for my trip to Maine and back this summer. My Ohlins came in just before Christmas and at the end of Nov Ron rebuilt my seat.

Best from Tucson
Bob
 

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Interesting, and thanks for the update.
Not to get anything started, but what oil do you use, what grade of fuel, and do you use any fuel additive?
Were any of your valves out of adjustment?

Frank
 

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2-4 grand... I know it's probably too late now. But there are ways to de-carbon the engine without tearing it apart.. Squirting a little water into the intake while it's running will de-carbonize the engine...

They make fuel injector cleaning solutions that will de-carbonize the engine without tearing it apart...

I'm wondering why you couldn't use one of these methods.. Do you have burned valves ?

Seems like everybody just want's to get as much money as they can nowadays...

John
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
It won't start with the exhaust valves on the two rear cylinders slightly open.

My plan was to change the plugs and check the buckets after I got her back on the road--I needed transportation to get to Drs appointments and pick up groceries. Also needed to mail some letters--there isn't an out going mail box next to the USPS provided array mail box. The LT is my year round transportation; my only transportation.

My guess is that the lower temp burning plugs, which according to the manufacturer cross to the LT's plugs, combined with not taking any Looong rides, when I would be running a little past the 75MPH interstate limit, for a couple of years allowed the build up?

Plus, no twisties here where I would be playing with higher than "normal" run around RPMs--wide open flat spaces here,

Engine oil was 20-50 RedLine. Gas is unleaded regular--never had a ping in temps above 100F.

Well. At least if I get pulled over for speeding this summer I can tell the officer "Honestly. I have to run her that fast or it costs me $2K to fix the carbon build up!"

About the only bright spot I can think of for this is that she died in my garage, not in the parking lot of some motel of the Blue Ridge TPK. And, I was planning on bringer her to the dealer to check the clutch problem.

OH! Yes the buckets on the two measured twice allowable. When I checked them at 12K they were within specs.

All of this is happening at 24K.

Best from Tucson
Bob
 

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Just wondering Bob, are you one of those people who likes to start her up once in awhile and not ride? Odd that it's just the two rear cylinders. Makes me wonder about a cooling or leaky intake issue.

There may be a way to break that carbon loose without pulling the head. All they need to do is remove the cams with the piston bottomed out, apply an air hose to the spark plug opening, and tap the buckets by hand a few times. If there's no seat or valve damage it may pop loose, particularly if they drop the exhaust and spray some carb cleaner on the valve. Worth a try. Let us know how it turns out.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
My LT is my only transportation Dean--she gets ridden weekly.

I have a batt tender but only use it the first time temps drop below 32F. It seems as if after that one time shot I never need it again.

Bike is at Iron Horse. I didn't ask if they had to pull the head to find the problem; I just assumed they did.

Lacking experience with this problem, I told them to go ahead a fix it. It never occurred to me that there would be a viable, simpler option not mentioned by them.

Best from Tucson
Bob
 

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Any chance the increased ethanol that is in regular fuel could have contributed to this problem? If so, at .20 increased cost for high test it a high price to pay to save a few cents a gallon.
 

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tobiwan said:
Any chance the increased ethanol that is in regular fuel could have contributed to this problem? If so, at .20 increased cost for high test it a high price to pay to save a few cents a gallon.
I would say BINGO. Bob, what brand gas do you use? Some will say that gas is gas, but most premium fuel has added additives to keep the injectors clean. I do not know about carbon buildup though.
Just my .02.
 

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Bob, if the valve lash was 2X the spec. then the problem is either bent valve stems, or more likely carbon build up keeping the valve from seating properly.

The valves on these beasties wear tight not loose so short of a little more aggressive riding style not much you could have done.

I feel bad that this has happened to you.

Loren
 

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Discussion Starter #11
It's real bad timing for all of these problems to pop up at once! Especially after buying the new shocks and seat.

To add insult to injury, my microwave dies while my LT is partying away at the dealer's.

I ran out of food, garbage bags, and dish detergent. So, I rented a car for 24 hours. filled up a shopping car at the grocery stores, found a microwave on sale at Lowes, which was a lot easier to bring home in the car than what I had to do to bring one home on my LT.

The evening after I returned that car, I tackled a pile of dishes in my sink, noticed the liquid was rather thick and didn't smell normal. I finally looked at the container more closely--it was for a dish washer!

If Rodney Dangerfield was around he'd point out "I don't get no respect!"

Best from Tucson
Bob
 

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It didn't sound right that it wouldn't start because of low compression in two cylinders. Even if it had NO compression in two cylinders it should start. I just pulled the two spark plug wires off my LT and it started just fine. I had to hold the throttle open a little to keep it running. As far as the cooler spark plugs the heat range would need to be way off to make any difference. As long as they are the extended tip like the OEM plug a couple of heat ranges cooler would work fine. My guess is that if all they do is get the valves in the head to seal it still won't start unless they find something else while they are working on it. If they find something simple to get it started they probably would just fix it and not say anything to cover there ass for pulling the head in the first place.

The dealer that I had my bike at in 2009 wanted to pull my head because of one cylinder with low compression and a leakdown of 35%. I told them it had been that way since they sold it to me 40,000 miles ago. The fact that it would barely run had nothing to do with the low compression. At certain race tracks our engines come back with as much as 70% leakdown past the exhaust valves since we have switched to un-leaded racing fuel. Even with that much leakdown they still are within 2% of the horsepower they had when they were fresh. This is why I do all of my own work. I have been a engine builder for 40 years now & am lucky in that I have what it takes to diagnose & repair it myself.
 

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I'm thinking EVERYBODY over to Dave's for a tech month. Let's just see how fast we can make these fat chicks run!!!! :histerica
 
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