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First BMW.Just bought my k1200lt.The bike has been sitting quite a while.Battery shot.Going to do a full service.Looking at parts on BBY website.Ordering battery,oil filter wrench and I am not sure about which oil to get with the 12/24 service kit.The bike has 75k on it and was told it ran well when parked.Should I get the 20w50 mineral or the 10w50 synthetic or does it make any difference.
 

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First BMW.Just bought my k1200lt.The bike has been sitting quite a while.Battery shot.Going to do a full service.Looking at parts on BBY website.Ordering battery,oil filter wrench and I am not sure about which oil to get with the 12/24 service kit.The bike has 75k on it and was told it ran well when parked.Should I get the 20w50 mineral or the 10w50 synthetic or does it make any difference.
If you are going to ride in temps below 30 degrees or above 110, the synthetic might be worth the money. Otherwise, dino oil is fine. I have run Castrol 4T 20W50 in mine since nearly new and no issues at 74,000 miles. I don’t ride much below 40 degrees anymore so the benefits fo synthetic just aren’t there. And I rarely ride more than 6,000 miles in a season and the dino oil is good for 6,000 miles so, again, no benefit from synthetic.

If you ride in temps between 40 and 100 and don’t need to do extended drain intervals, then synthetic offers no measurable advantage.
 

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First BMW.Just bought my k1200lt.The bike has been sitting quite a while.Battery shot.Going to do a full service.Looking at parts on BBY website.Ordering battery,oil filter wrench and I am not sure about which oil to get with the 12/24 service kit.The bike has 75k on it and was told it ran well when parked.Should I get the 20w50 mineral or the 10w50 synthetic or does it make any difference.
The book calls for 20W50 with 50 being the operative word. You can run either Dino or Syn, whatever you want as long as it meets the OEM spec for an oil. Please don't start an oil thread. If you are in a really cold area, 10W50 might give you easier starts but I wouldn't use it unless cold was a big factor. With the old style brick engine and solid lifters, the Zinc anti wear component is more important so get an oil with boosted levels of Zinc and don't worry about the rest. Good old Mobile 1, 15W50 from Walmart would be a good choice, readily available, meets spec and not overly expensive in the 5qt jug. The 20W50 V-Twin would be better and has higher levels of Zinc but costs a bit more but only available by the Qt. If you are an oil snob, find your favorite brand and get the zinc boosted variety usually spec for motorcycles and you can't go wrong.

Good luck getting her running again. If it was sitting that long, you will probably have fuel pump issues with lots of rust and corrosion inside the tank on the pump assembly.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
The bike has its last service 3 years ago but it has been sitting and not many miles on it since.Do you think I need to service it or will the oil be ok since it hasn't been ridden.
 

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The bike has its last service 3 years ago but it has been sitting and not many miles on it since.Do you think I need to service it or will the oil be ok since it hasn't been ridden.
I would definitely change the oil if it has been sitting for 3 years and it did have some miles on it. Filter would be a toss up but would do that also so you have a good start point to move forward with service records.
 
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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks.I was on the fence about servicing it as there were not many miles on it since last service but 3 years ago and is has been sitting.
 

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Get on Youtube and search for the KJ maintenance videos Illinois BMW riders. If it was me, I'd change everything. Here is a link:

 
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Yes, service all the fluids, I say this because you did not mention the brakes. Get that old fluid out of there pronto. Find a thread on bleeding them. It was mentioned not to start an oil thread. But some bad advice in my opinion was given, " Good old Mobile 1, 15W50 from Walmart would be a good choice, readily available, meets spec and not overly expensive in the 5qt jug. " This is an automotive oil. Buy whatever brand you want but get the correct weight and buy a motorcycle rated oil. It has the additive package you are looking for and mentioned above. I used to use Mobile 1 until my cam followers were torn up by the cam lobes in a previously owned BMW.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks.I will move forward with full service before attempting to start it.Buying the 20w50 mineral oil from BBY.Do I need to add additive or is ready to go?Prior owner stated that the last time it ran he started it with a low battery and it ran for about 5 minutes then quit.Been sitting since.While I have the Tupperware off can I start it to make sure the starter module hasn't fused?Also it is out of state and I will need to register in California.DMV will need to verify engine and frame VIN numbers.Can I ride it to DMV with the lower covers off so they can see the engine numbers?
 

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I used to use Mobile 1 until my cam followers were torn up by the cam lobes in a previously owned BMW.

Really? did you manage to get pics of that damage?

Clymer lists API SF or SG oil classification which seems to be listed as obsolete. Mobile 1, 15W50 is listed as meeting or exceeding API classifications SN, SM, SL and SJ which include coverage for the older obsolete classifications plus it has extra zinc. Yes, the V-Twin with even more ZINC would be the better choice but the 15W50 far exceeds what is required and is designed for flat tappet engines like the brick.

https://mobiloil.com/~/media/amer/us/pvl/files/pdfs/mobil-1-oil-product-specs-guide.pdf

And here I said don't start an oil thread :nerd:
 
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Thanks.I will move forward with full service before attempting to start it.Buying the 20w50 mineral oil from BBY.Do I need to add additive or is ready to go?Prior owner stated that the last time it ran he started it with a low battery and it ran for about 5 minutes then quit.Been sitting since.While I have the Tupperware off can I start it to make sure the starter module hasn't fused?Also it is out of state and I will need to register in California.DMV will need to verify engine and frame VIN numbers.Can I ride it to DMV with the lower covers off so they can see the engine numbers?
If you connect the new battery and the starter doesn't immediately begin to turn, the relay isn't fused. :) Yes you can start it and ride it with the covers off if necessary.
 

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Thanks.I will move forward with full service before attempting to start it.Buying the 20w50 mineral oil from BBY.Do I need to add additive or is ready to go?Prior owner stated that the last time it ran he started it with a low battery and it ran for about 5 minutes then quit.Been sitting since.While I have the Tupperware off can I start it to make sure the starter module hasn't fused?Also it is out of state and I will need to register in California.DMV will need to verify engine and frame VIN numbers.Can I ride it to DMV with the lower covers off so they can see the engine numbers?
Numbers are visible w/ tupperware on https://www.bmwlt.com/forums/k1200lt/125378-where-vin-s-located.html.
I don't think you can ride w/o it assembled, anyway.

"Ran for 5 minute then quit."--Out of gas? It won't quit because of battery. I'd be concerned about gas sitting in fuel system for 3 yrs.

Just use the oil. No need for additives in oil.

Search the forum for answers to pretty much every question about these bikes. Significant differences between pre-2005 and the 2nd generation ones, so your year helps get the right answer for yours. Enjoy!
 

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FWIW...I owned a 2007 K1200LT for about 10 years and it's a wonderful bike. After about 5000 miles of break-in, I switched from dino oil to synthetic.

These bikes are notorious for developing leaks in the rear engine seal, which then contaminates the dry clutch. While I have no proof and I'm sure it was likely just coincidence, I did develop a rear main seal leak at around 30,000 miles. If I'd had it to do over, I would never have switched to synthetic and just kept running the dino oil. Again, I've no doubt there are many owners who switched to synthetic and never had an issue, but I'm just sharing my opinion and my experience.

Enjoy the new ride...it is an awesome motorcycle and I always marvel at how an 18 year old design still looks so modern and cutting edge. BMW really did their work on it.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
so if I connect the new battery with the ignition off and the starter doesnt engage its good?Just don't want to turn ignition on with the bad fuel in it to find out.
 

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so if I connect the new battery with the ignition off and the starter doesnt engage its good?Just don't want to turn ignition on with the bad fuel in it to find out.
Right. The starter relay is connected directly to the battery so if it is fused, it will engage the starter whether the key is on or not.

Not saying it is good as that would mean it works properly when the button is pressed but it isn't fused if it doesn't try and engage the starter as soon as the battery is connected.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
great.Thank you for all your help.Have new battery on slow charge.Then ill put it in and see what happens.I cant see the engine numbers with the covers .Am i missing something or do the covers have to come off to see the numbers.Maybe I am looking in the wrong place.
 

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great.Thank you for all your help.Have new battery on slow charge.Then ill put it in and see what happens.I cant see the engine numbers with the covers .Am i missing something or do the covers have to come off to see the numbers.Maybe I am looking in the wrong place.
As stated in the document found by going to the link above, on the right side under the drivers kick plate and also under the seat on the plate on the right side of the battery.
 

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The book calls for 20W50 with 50 being the operative word. You can run either Dino or Syn, whatever you want as long as it meets the OEM spec for an oil. Please don't start an oil thread. If you are in a really cold area, 10W50 might give you easier starts but I wouldn't use it unless cold was a big factor. With the old style brick engine and solid lifters, the Zinc anti wear component is more important so get an oil with boosted levels of Zinc and don't worry about the rest. Good old Mobile 1, 15W50 from Walmart would be a good choice, readily available, meets spec and not overly expensive in the 5qt jug. The 20W50 V-Twin would be better and has higher levels of Zinc but costs a bit more but only available by the Qt. If you are an oil snob, find your favorite brand and get the zinc boosted variety usually spec for motorcycles and you can't go wrong.

Good luck getting her running again. If it was sitting that long, you will probably have fuel pump issues with lots of rust and corrosion inside the tank on the pump assembly.
What would winter be without an oil thread? >:)
 

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Yes, service all the fluids, I say this because you did not mention the brakes. Get that old fluid out of there pronto. Find a thread on bleeding them. It was mentioned not to start an oil thread. But some bad advice in my opinion was given, " Good old Mobile 1, 15W50 from Walmart would be a good choice, readily available, meets spec and not overly expensive in the 5qt jug. " This is an automotive oil. Buy whatever brand you want but get the correct weight and buy a motorcycle rated oil. It has the additive package you are looking for and mentioned above. I used to use Mobile 1 until my cam followers were torn up by the cam lobes in a previously owned BMW.
Gordon’s advice was good advice. Mobil (not Mobile, unless maybe you buy it in Alabama) 1, 15W50 is fine for this engine. the 15W50 still has high enough ZDDP levels and the brick engine is basically an automobile style engine anyway as it does not have an integral clutch and transmission as with most Japanese bikes.

I probably would use Mobil 1 15W50 if it was readily available, but for reasons unknown to me the WalMarts in my area quit carrying the 15W50 weight many years ago. And for my riding conditions, synthetic adds no value. Some believe the Mobil 1 helps with the starter clutch issue, but I think regular riding and regular oil changes also helps prevent problems there.

What viscosity Mobil 1 did you use in your engine that failed? If you use the lighter weight oils that modern cars us, then you don’t get the required levels of ZDDP. I think the 15W50 is the only auto Mobil 1 that has the required levels. If you want to use a lighter weight oil, then you need to get the motorcycle specific oil to ensure proper ZDDP level.
 
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