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Thread: Q: oil change for winter 2011 RT

  1. #1
    Ed Kilner #176066
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    Q: oil change for winter 2011 RT

    If I was going to lay it up entirely for the winter, yes, I know I should put in fresh oil and not start it during the layup period.

    But, suppose the weather is such that only Jan & Feb have zero riding?

    I had new oil about 2500 km ago.

    What is the real damage done by used oil? Do the new nikasil coatings make it more or less important to change before storage?

    Cars often get stored for months without oil changes, why are we so anal about our bikes? Are there good reasons?
    Ed
    2011 R1200RT Thunder Gray Metallic; 2000 Triumph 900(sold)
    http://triumphantsblog.blogspot.ca/

  2. #2
    MOA #24991 Pauls1150's Avatar
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    We are anal because we care...

    The concern is that if the oil is left to sit, and not periodically brought up to full operating temperature, then the water that condenses inside (entry through crankcase breather or open valves) not only causes rust, but the hydrogen in the water will blend with the sulfur in the oil additive formula. This creates sulfuric acid, which is highly corrosive.

    It's perfectly OK to start it - and then bring it up to full temp, 5 bars on the RID. Make sure there is enough airflow to cool the exhaust and to prevent you from suffocating.

    Dunno if it makes a difference with Nikasil, but that could be moot, since there are so many other metals inside too.

  3. #3
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    Using your slightly used oil during the winter is not the problem. Not riding is the problem. The danger comes from the many freeze-thaw cycles we get in the snow belt during the winter. From each freeze-thaw cycle, 1 tsp of water can be found to be added to the crankcase. That's why you need to run the bike to boil that water off. A 5 minute warm-up may do little or no good. You also should not let just about any motorcycle idle more than a couple of minutes to "warm it up". You should ride it.

    I also thought Nikasil had fallen out of favor due to engine failures and was now only used in racing engines.

  4. #4
    MOA #24991 Pauls1150's Avatar
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    "out of favor"??? News to me; it's worked well enough that other manufacturers have also used it (with slight alloy differences so they don't impinge on the patent).

  5. #5
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    I know a lot of manufactureres use or used the coating. I'm just recalling what I read somewhere.

    EDIT- I googled 'Nikasil engine problems' and got several articles on how the BMW auto V8 engines were damaged because of sulfur content in fuel. Seems like Nikasil was a failure back in the 90s.
    Last edited by ClassicVW; 11-17-2012 at 07:16 PM.

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