BMW Luxury Touring Community banner
1 - 17 of 17 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
317 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I haven't see any threads on the initial FD oil service, after a rebuild. Upon draining the FD oil at 1,000 mi after the crown and tapered roller bearings were replaced, I found it contained more glitter, and the magnet had more fuzz than I'd ever seen before.
Can someone please put the "This thread is useless without pics" on this?
At 2.000 mi there was a some sludge on the magnet and the oil was dark, but it lacked the look of glitter. At 3,500 miles, oil had a mildly darker coloration and only a slight coating of sludge on the magnet.

I've done the "rear wheel play test" and spun the wheel while dry (not me, the bearing) after flushing with solvent while listening for problems. Nothing to note. I'm aware these tests aren't definitive, but I couldn't stop myself.

I'm not looking for the prediction of impending doom for my final drive, just wondering what others have found on their first oil changes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,149 Posts
seahabit said:
I haven't see any threads on the initial FD oil service, after a rebuild. Upon draining the FD oil at 1,000 mi after the crown and tapered roller bearings were replaced, I found it contained more glitter, and the magnet had more fuzz than I'd ever seen before.
Can someone please put the "This thread is useless without pics" on this?
At 2.000 mi there was a some sludge on the magnet and the oil was dark, but it lacked the look of glitter. At 3,500 miles, oil had a mildly darker coloration and only a slight coating of sludge on the magnet.

I've done the "rear wheel play test" and spun the wheel while dry (not me, the bearing) after flushing with solvent while listening for problems. Nothing to note. I'm aware these tests aren't definitive, but I couldn't stop myself.

I'm not looking for the prediction of impending doom for my final drive, just wondering what others have found on their first oil changes.
I have found that the sludge and glitter stuff seem to hang around for about 10K after a rebuild/replace. I'd say ride it some more and quit changing the oil so often.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,089 Posts
Who rebuilt the drive?

What was the original failure?

What is the experience level of the person who rebuilt it? Just rebuilding with some new parts without addressing the root cause of failure is just begging to do it all over again.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,404 Posts
seahabit said:
I haven't see any threads on the initial FD oil service, after a rebuild. Upon draining the FD oil at 1,000 mi after the crown and tapered roller bearings were replaced, I found it contained more glitter, and the magnet had more fuzz than I'd ever seen before.
Can someone please put the "This thread is useless without pics" on this?
At 2.000 mi there was a some sludge on the magnet and the oil was dark, but it lacked the look of glitter. At 3,500 miles, oil had a mildly darker coloration and only a slight coating of sludge on the magnet.

I've done the "rear wheel play test" and spun the wheel while dry (not me, the bearing) after flushing with solvent while listening for problems. Nothing to note. I'm aware these tests aren't definitive, but I couldn't stop myself.

I'm not looking for the prediction of impending doom for my final drive, just wondering what others have found on their first oil changes.
Is that my rebuild? I have spreadsheet data for a FD rebuild for you. The spreadsheet data shows preload shim calculations and my findings regarding existing shim thickness. It doesn't have data regarding changes to other components like the tapered roller bearing.

I've gone through my message archives and don't see the correspondence but I have to delete msgs periodically because the mailbox gets too full.

Did I post pics for your rebuild after I did it? If it is my rebuild, I want to reconstruct what I found during the rebuild. Specifically I want to know why I replaced the tapered roller bearing, if I did. You state tapered roller bearing(S), are you talking about the swingarm pivot bearings which are needle bearings or are you talking about the tapered roller bearing that is inside the FD?

Please confirm if this is my rebuild.

Grey fuzz is normal during wear-in following a rebuild. Shiney metal flakes should not be being generated. If a crownwheel bearing failed, depending on how far the bike was ridden with a failiing bearing, metal flakes can get up into the input pinion shaft area. (this is another reason why continuing to ride after symptoms of bearing failure is discouraged). I always try to flush out the pinion shaft area during a rebuild. It is relatively inaccessable and while unusual, it is possible that metal flakes can hide in there in spite of efforts to flush them out in the parts washer. In short, it is possible that metal flakes can find there way out after a rebuild and not be a symptom of new failure.

If the shiney flakes are residual from the previous failure, they will eventually all be captured by the drain plug magnet.

Really dark lube can be a sign of aluminum wear. There are two failures that generate aluminum suspension in the lube but the crown wheel bearing doesn't generally generate much aluminum. Aluminum will not be captured by the drainplug magnet like the gray fuzz and shiney flakes will.

I recommend changing the lube (use cheap lube, I like WalMart Tech brand) after a few hundred, up to a thousand miles, again. Contrary to the suggestion above, if you are seeing shiney metal flakes, I'd recommend frequent checks of the drainplug. It is possible to check without draining all the lube. Pull the drain, hold the lube in with a finger while you inspect the plug. (a second pair of hands might help). If you loose much lube in the process, you can just top it off. If you are still seeing increasing metal, and it is my rebuild, ship it back to me (once I open the drive I can tell if it is my rebuild).

"I've done the "rear wheel play test" and spun the wheel while dry (not me, the bearing) after flushing with solvent while listening for problems. Nothing to note. I'm aware these tests aren't definitive, but I couldn't stop myself. "

The "shake the wheel test" is definitive, it will definitely tell you nothing. By all accounts, by the time you can feel wheel movement, there will be lube leak at the hub seal.

Rotating the wheel and feeling for roughness is equally difficult. Only advanced bearing degradation will be detected, and by that time you might also be feeling it during the ride on smooth road surfaces.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
161 Posts
Okay what should we be looking for?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
637 Posts
I suggest that the magnetic drain plug from a FD be first swish-washed, but NOT using a brush, in a small quantity of solvent (such as gasoline) in a small drawn aluminum can such as a beer can with the top cut off. This way the residual steel on the magnet is retained on the magnet, the oil removed, and any non ferrous material will be in the bottom of the aluminum can. There are no non ferrous wear materials, so any can sediment is simply a flush-out.

On the other hand, the steel chips or shavings (or worse, chunks) on the magnet can be felt with your fingers. A photo of the magnet and a finger feel would be a better way to evaluate a candidate FD for rebuilding.

Chips can be removed from a dry magnet before re-installation with a small wad of masking tape.

This was maybe a marginal call for a rebuild, but the picture below is what I found on my K1200LT at ~15K miles. I elected to have Curtis rebuild it as cheap insurance. The bearing was near perfect, but it was over-shimmed like the others.
 

Attachments

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
317 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
No, it wasn't a Charlie rebuild. I began asking questions: FD inspection/rebuild (Dec.19,2011 at 4:20 pm. I know there are others on this site that are FD capable, but you Charlie, stepped in immediately to help me out. I don't believe there's any failure (fingers crossed), but if it is so, I hold myself responsible. I watched your video (is that horse for sale), you walked me through the steps, sent me the data spreadsheet and also confirmed my final results. I did replace the tapered roller bearing inside the FD because the roller bearing cage had come off.

At first look, the drained FD oil did seem to have shinny metal flakes suspended in it. I let it set, poured off the oil, thinned it, poured it through a clean rag, and although I'm sure I didn't get it all, it no longer looked to be flakes. Instead, it looked like graphite powder. And at that point, it was a very small amount, but when it's mixed with oil, it looks to be a lot. Same with the fuzz. It seemed to be a lot, but when Iightly touched it, it flattened out and all but disappeared. I apologize for not stating this originally. I try not to get wordy. I change oil each 3,ooo mi, regardless of what others believe. Clean oil looks purdy. I just changed to Walley worlds synthetic (won't start a FD oil thread here) in order to check for coloration changes.

There seemed to be much more metal debris on my first observation of the drained oil, than I was used to seeing So I just had to ask what others were experiencing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,404 Posts
seahabit said:
No, it wasn't a Charlie rebuild. I began asking questions: FD inspection/rebuild (Dec.19,2011 at 4:20 pm. I know there are others on this site that are FD capable, but you Charlie, stepped in immediately to help me out. I don't believe there's any failure (fingers crossed), but if it is so, I hold myself responsible. I watched your video (is that horse for sale), you walked me through the steps, sent me the data spreadsheet and also confirmed my final results. I did replace the tapered roller bearing inside the FD because the roller bearing cage had come off.

At first look, the drained FD oil did seem to have shinny metal flakes suspended in it. I let it set, poured off the oil, thinned it, poured it through a clean rag, and although I'm sure I didn't get it all, it no longer looked to be flakes. Instead, it looked like graphite powder. And at that point, it was a very small amount, but when it's mixed with oil, it looks to be a lot. Same with the fuzz. It seemed to be a lot, but when Iightly touched it, it flattened out and all but disappeared. I apologize for not stating this originally. I try not to get wordy. I change oil each 3,ooo mi, regardless of what others believe. Clean oil looks purdy. I just changed to Walley worlds synthetic (won't start a FD oil thread here) in order to check for coloration changes.

There seemed to be much more metal debris on my first observation of the drained oil, than I was used to seeing So I just had to ask what others were experiencing.
Okay, I remember the conversation now. I was concerned at the time by the fact that you reported that the bearing retainer had come off the tapered roller bearing. That still bothers me; I want to understand why that happened because it is unusual (weird).

So is that graphite looking material magnetic or not? Was it stuck to the drain plug magnet or did it just settle out of the lube?

Addendum: that Quarter Horse was 30 years old at the time of the video. She was a quality horse. Members of Beemer Biker Dudes and attendees of Ride Vermont may remember the horse. She is now buried at the edge of the west pasture in the shade of the trees, RIP.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
317 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
It's a crying shame that good steeds don't last our lifetime. I've had some favorite family horses, but Roy Roger's Trigger tops the list.

I failed my assignment by not checking the magnetism of the metal powder. If I can guess, it is aluminum because it wasn't stuck to the magnet, but it's gone now

Concerning the bearing retainer, I have since snapped it back together. Don't know why it came apart. It was intact as it was lifted. I think I touched it, I didn't muscle it.

This whole process has been fun, nerve racking and enlightening. I'm enjoying this so Thanks for your input.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,404 Posts
FuzzyWuzHe said:
Okay what should we be looking for?
Alan,
This query of yours got kind of ignored during this development of this thread.
If you are wondering what to be looking for with respect to impending final drive failure, here's a good place to start:

It is a thread I started a while ago and one of the moderators decided to make it a "sticky" at the top of the K1200 forum page:

http://www.bmwlt.com/forums/showthread.php?t=63109
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,345 Posts
My FD failed twice on me. Both times I could feel it in my footpegs before it cratered. It was just a little buzz at around 30mph that I could feel in the pegs. It went away at higher speeds until it got worse. Then it turned into a "womp......womp.........womp" when it got worse. It was like what a bad wheel bearing or tire feels like. I think the initial failure was warning me a good 600 miles before it got bad. I just didn't know what I was feeling. Same way with the second but I was closer to home with it. The LT seems to dance on the pavement at highway speeds. It's very smooth and it lost that smoothness before each failure. That's how it was for me. It could be different for you. You get used to your machine and have a feel when something isn't right. Especially if you have stripped her down and worked on it yourself............. :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
729 Posts
seahabit said:
I haven't see any threads on the initial FD oil service, after a rebuild. Upon draining the FD oil at 1,000 mi after the crown and tapered roller bearings were replaced, I found it contained more glitter, and the magnet had more fuzz than I'd ever seen before.
Can someone please put the "This thread is useless without pics" on this?
At 2.000 mi there was a some sludge on the magnet and the oil was dark, but it lacked the look of glitter. At 3,500 miles, oil had a mildly darker coloration and only a slight coating of sludge on the magnet.

I've done the "rear wheel play test" and spun the wheel while dry (not me, the bearing) after flushing with solvent while listening for problems. Nothing to note. I'm aware these tests aren't definitive, but I couldn't stop myself.

I'm not looking for the prediction of impending doom for my final drive, just wondering what others have found on their first oil changes.
Research "silting" start with hydraulics (not rivers and streams), you might find the answers to some of your questions.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,176 Posts
Quote by new2rt, from another post:
"I'll do you all a favor and let the FD conversations alone."

Some how I thought that meant you were going to shut the hell up.
Wrong again. Silly me. :wave
 
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
Top