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I have recently become the proud owner of a 2010 year R1200RT and have read that it uses a lot of oil. This may be a silly question but can I top up the oil with some Catrol Edge 5W 30 that I use on my diesel Audi? If not what should I buy. I am off to France next week for my first ever bike tour and will be doing approximately 1500 km. Apologies if this insults people's intelligence but the beauty of this forum is people like me can ask things which are totally obvious to others.
 

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Welcome to the asylum.

You CAN say anything here.... you may take a little ribbing but we are never serious about it.

New BMW RT's do use some oil until break-in is complete. Depending on may factors, this may be after 18,000 (common) miles or even as few as 6,000 (rare). Once break-in is achieved they use very little.

To properly check your oil level ride it till its warm then park it on the side stand... give it 5 minutes at least... as things have to drain down from the upper territories.... then put it on the center stand and give it another 5 minutes. Look in the sight glass. If you see oil... it is good to go. If it is in the lower half, I usually top it off. Be careful of over filling... a little goes a long way.

I forget the amount but half-a-glass is something like 6 ounces.

If you have the oil you mention you certainly can use it. I might suggest getting a quart of the proper oil however. Using the specified 15W-40 or 50 cannot be a bad thing. You do not have to use full synthetic... especially until full break-in has occurred.

If you just feel the need to use some from your shelf... just go for it. No problem.
 

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dude987 said:
Fully synthetic 5W 40 is recommended.
According to page 149 of the 2011 RT owner's manual, synthetic oil is not recommended until at least 10000 km (6000 miles), specifically due to the oil consumption habits of many new engines. If your engine is using oil, you are better off not to use synthetic until the oil consumption is reduced. In some cases that may be 20 or 30000 km.

Engine oils of API classification SF or better.
Engine oils of ACEA classification A2 or better.
BMW Motorrad recommends not using synthetic
oils for the first 10000 km. Please do not hesitate
to contact your authorised BMW Motorrad dealer
if you have any questions relating the choice of a
suitable engine oil for your motorcycle.


If the bike came with an owner's manual, you will find BMW's recommendations for engine oil.
 

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hopz said:
To properly check your oil level ride it till its warm then park it on the side stand... give it 5 minutes at least... as things have to drain down from the upper territories.... then put it on the center stand and give it another 5 minutes. Look in the sight glass. If you see oil... it is good to go. If it is in the lower half, I usually top it off. Be careful of over filling... a little goes a long way.
I hesitated to write this note, because I don't want this to turn into a "how to check your oil" thread. That being said, I do want to point out, while many people do check their oil exactly how you have described above, I would hesitate to say that is the way to properly check the oil.

The only way which BMW has outlined to check the oil on a boxer is to put the motorcycle on the center stand, wait five minutes, and then view the oil through the site glass.

Using the method that hopz has described above is said to be sure that the oil is out of the oil cooler, etc prior to checking it. However, considering that oil is in the oil cooler when it is running, I'll leave it up to you to decide which method is better.

Lastly, I will note that the oil quantity sensor warning will show up earlier on the RTs that I have worked with when the oil is checked using the side stand for five minutes, then center stand for another five minutes, vs using the BMW suggested method of center stand right away, and then checking the site glass five minutes later. Using that method, my experience has been the site glass and oil quantity sensor agree.
 

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The new guy asks a civilized question. He does not need an exercise in anal retentive oil philosophy.

If he is a half a pint low and adds some oil what possible difference does it make?

This is a motor that Ewan and Charlie rode around he friggin world. Do you think they stopped in Kazakhstan and waited for a delivery of Mobil One?.. its not that big a deal.

Use what you have.
 

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SPXDR said:
I hesitated to write this note, because I don't want this to turn into a "how to check your oil" thread. That being said, I do want to point out, while many people do check their oil exactly how you have described above, I would hesitate to say that is the way to properly check the oil.

The only way which BMW has outlined to check the oil on a boxer is to put the motorcycle on the center stand, wait five minutes, and then view the oil through the site glass.

Using the method that hopz has described above is said to be sure that the oil is out of the oil cooler, etc prior to checking it. However, considering that oil is in the oil cooler when it is running, I'll leave it up to you to decide which method is better.

Lastly, I will note that the oil quantity sensor warning will show up earlier on the RTs that I have worked with when the oil is checked using the side stand for five minutes, then center stand for another five minutes, vs using the BMW suggested method of center stand right away, and then checking the site glass five minutes later. Using that method, my experience has been the site glass and oil quantity sensor agree.
SPXDR, that makes a lot of good sense. I'll use the side stand for 5 minutes then center stand when changing oil to make sure all the oil is out of the cooler, but to check the oil level I'm going directly to the center stand to keep more oil in the cooler as if the engine was running.
 

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rwbloch said:
am i the only one? My '09 RT has 34,000+ miles on it and still consumes oil. Having a quart on board is a must on long trips.
One of the things that my dealer told me was during the break in period it is important not to rev high for long periods of time but you should give it occasional short bursts of high revs. He said ride it like a motorcycle and not ride around shifting at low revs all the time but not to ride at high speed/revs for long periods, vary the revs and not overly worry about it. I have just completed a 9,000 plus km trip and it did use some oil, I added less than a 1/3rd of a litre.

Gerhard
 

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hopz said:
The new guy asks a civilized question. He does not need an exercise in anal retentive oil philosophy.

If he is a half a pint low and adds some oil what possible difference does it make?

This is a motor that Ewan and Charlie rode around he friggin world. Do you think they stopped in Kazakhstan and waited for a delivery of Mobil One?.. its not that big a deal.

Use what you have.
+1 x ∞
 

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I added a total of a quart every 6K miles until 12K when it didn't seem to use any oil. Then from 24K to 36K, I used a half quart/6K. After 36K to now at 51K, I haven't needed to add any oil between 6K changes, but I will continue to carry a quart of 15W50 (same as my airplane uses).

Bill
 

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Oil is oil.. Doesn't really matter to the engine...As long as it's liquid...

I've noticed that first half of the site glass goes alot faster than the second...

I keep mine at 1/2 up the glass and it rarely needs more... If I top it off. Then It will use oil back down to the 1/2 glass...

Good Luck.

John
 

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JPSpen said:
Oil is oil.. Doesn't really matter to the engine...As long as it's liquid...

I've noticed that first half of the site glass goes alot faster than the second...

I keep mine at 1/2 up the glass and it rarely needs more... If I top it off. Then It will use oil back down to the 1/2 glass...

Good Luck.

John
I guess that extra virgin olive oil should be fine then...
 

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I like Canola oil. Canadian Corn is sweeet.

Cheaper than the Mobile one too. We passed through Mobile on vacation it was the same price there as in other places, what a rip-off. (please notice I used a hyphen)
 

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JPSpen said:
I've noticed that first half of the site glass goes alot faster than the second...

I keep mine at 1/2 up the glass and it rarely needs more... If I top it off. Then It will use oil back down to the 1/2 glass...

Good Luck.

John
I have observed the same phenomena :confused:
 

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Hi,

If it's any crumb of comfort for you, I have a 17,000 miler which I just took from UK down to Switzerland.
I took a litre of 10w 50 semi with me and never used a drop!

Enjoy your trip!
 
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