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Old 03-21-2009, 08:27 AM   #1
Lost Rider OP
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Question 800GS - Look at My Cam and Oil Leak

My F800GS with about 7,000 miles at the time developed a minor oil leak while thrashing it around Moab.
Carefully watching the oil levels, 2 days later I got it to a dealer, and while they were "fixing" it, more than one tech was standing around my bike looking at the cam, and what appears to be chunks of metal missing from it.

I would like to hear your thoughts, especially if you have some first hand knowledge about cams on an f800 or similar Rotax engine.
I believe that it was made this way, and didn't break off in the engine. I've changed the oil 3 times myself and there's been no debris on the magnetic plug.
I was told this is normal, and was done in the casting process.

It still doesn't look right, so I figured I's ask the experts.
BTW, a cause for the oil leak was not found, according to the dealer the head was torqued correctly and there was nothing wrong with the gasket... they added some liquid gasket to it and it hasn't leaked.


First started leaking oil





at the nearest (open) dealer in the direction I was heading











The Cam... all of them had a chunk missing kind of close to the lobe.
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Old 03-21-2009, 08:59 AM   #2
larryboy
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Not normal. More than likely those chunks are floating around waiting to grenade the thing. I'd insist on a full engine tear down and inspection or they can buy it back. This is a safety issue and present it that way to get what is right.


Edit: They replaced that cam of course....right?
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Old 03-21-2009, 09:39 AM   #3
mr moto
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That absolutely does not look right at all !!! I would not even dare to start the engine with those big chunks of metal missing from the camshaft. who knows what sort of damage it has done elsewhere inside the engine. I would demand a complete rebuild of the engine or a new bike .
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Old 03-21-2009, 09:51 AM   #4
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The texture of the "missing" parts was the same as the rest of the rough casted part. I have put thousands of miles on it since then, it runs great.
I don't see how if those chunks came off and were not part of the casting how I couldn't have had major problems already, or found some debris in the oil filter.
3 different dealers have told me that same thing, don't worry about it.
I don't think it looks right either, but if the bikes running good, and at least one trusted source is telling me not to worry...
I'm not trying to argue any point, just throwing out the details...

I can't be the only one to have this many miles on a F800, or had engine opened up, hasn't anyone else seen the innards of the Rotax engine?
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Old 03-21-2009, 11:13 AM   #5
NCD
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Between the missing zones, and the scoring of the surface ... I would be furious if that were my engine. Now, I know its "normal" to have some voids at the edges sometimes - but that far into (almost the middle) of the machined surface?
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Old 03-21-2009, 01:03 PM   #6
simmersonwheels
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New Cam?

I hope at the very least they replaced the camshaft and buckets, and inspected the journals for wear.
I make my living as a bike tech and I would never button that up. At the very least I'd order a new cam to see if the new part exhibited similar voids, unless I'd seen similar defects on many other 800's.
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Old 03-21-2009, 03:12 PM   #7
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Man that is just wrong looking. Chunks look like they were broken and not machined. BMW needs to tear down that engine and have a look for you.
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Old 03-21-2009, 06:04 PM   #8
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I been an aircraft mechanic for over 40 years... if I opened up an engine and saw that - complete tear-down - end of story.

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Old 03-21-2009, 08:28 PM   #9
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That's messed up man. I'd be so friggin' pissed. For $12,000 you should get an engine without chunks missing and without oil leaks for 40,000 miles.

Anyone else have similar mileage to ChiTown? Anyone else reporting oil leakage or any engine problems? Shit's got me worried. Not at all what I expected from Rotax.
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Old 03-21-2009, 08:36 PM   #10
Boon Booni
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I'm not sure I'd be worried about this. It looks like it's the low point of the cam lobe where nothing rides on it.

It looks to me like it's been cast with those areas missing.

I seem to remember one of my bikes having cut outs at the same point on the cam. Instead of being to one side or the other, the lobes were notched on either side so the center was the machined surface. It looked odd to me, but was consistent with all the lobes on the cam, so I was OK with it.

Are all the lobes similarly "chunked"?

Is that the only photo you have?

I can't tell if we're looking at the exhaust or intake cam.
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Old 03-21-2009, 10:01 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cowboy2
I been an aircraft mechanic for over 40 years... if I opened up an engine and saw that - complete tear-down - end of story.

Cowboy

I've been into thousands of engines and I've never seen shoddy cams like that...EVER. From lawn mowers to $30,000 diesels..NEVER. I can't even grasp that a tech of any kind would say it's normal, let alone 3 dealerships.
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Old 03-22-2009, 04:05 AM   #12
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Thats bad!! Where the fuck have the "bits" gone! To me, its an engine strip and new cams etc etc
Mate, its fucked!!

That would be "chunking" the buckets. More than half the lobe rubbing surface has gone? Its not normal!

The "top" will be coming off mine before the warranty expires!!
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Old 03-22-2009, 04:46 AM   #13
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If that was normal, why would more than one tech come out to see it?
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Old 03-22-2009, 06:04 AM   #14
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That is a defect, Honda went thru this with the first gen Sabre V4, the Worst bike ever.

The oil filter will catch big chunks very efficiently. Hopefully the oil pump has safety margin for it's wear.

New cam, new followers, minimum

If can check or replace oil pump then much better

Oil pressure test minimum

Rod
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Old 03-22-2009, 08:36 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gramps
I'm not sure I'd be worried about this. It looks like it's the low point of the cam lobe where nothing rides on it.

It looks to me like it's been cast with those areas missing.

I seem to remember one of my bikes having cut outs at the same point on the cam. Instead of being to one side or the other, the lobes were notched on either side so the center was the machined surface. It looked odd to me, but was consistent with all the lobes on the cam, so I was OK with it.

Are all the lobes similarly "chunked"?

Is that the only photo you have?

I can't tell if we're looking at the exhaust or intake cam.

Unfortunately that's the only photo I have. The bottom of the photo is the rear of the engine, the intake??
Yes all of the lobes look "chunked" from what I remember.
They said what you said, nothing rides on that part of the cam and therefore not to worry about it.






Thanks for all the replies...
I'm not pissed, or furious, or even mad at all. I try not to get upset over mechanical things. Human's make machines, machines are not perfect no matter how much you pay for them... even the space shuttle crashed...

Not that it should matter, but I "broke" this engine in at Death Valley, kind of following the take easy instruction, but not really. I then just rode the piss out of the 8GS in many kinds of environments, never taking it easy and basically "using" the GS as it designed to be used and abused. Of course I changed the oil and did maintenance it when it was time. The bike has performed wonderfully, with the exception of the minor oil leak ( I never had to add oil in the 1000 mile trek to a dealer).
However, I do get upset over poor treatment from a person who's job it is to take care of my mechanical possessions, but in this instance that is not the case.
The dealer that fixed my oil leak got me right in, gave me a loaner, and sent me on my way as fast as possible - I was far from home and wanting to keep moving asap, therefore new cams or whatever wasn't going to happen. They did what I wanted, and after asking a trusted source at another dealer I was fine with getting back on the road.
I'm not sure what to do now, the bike runs great, but the comments in here are persuasive.... I'm just riding the frikin' bike.
I guess I will take it to Chicago BMW along with this photo and see what they say, I know a few of the master mechanics pretty well and trust them.
I don't really like dealers working on my bike per se, and I do all my own maintenance on my boxer engine.... but as much as I think that it looks fucked up and just not right, I also don't believe there's some kind of conspiracy to cover up this weird looking cam...
I guess time will tell as f800 owners start to open up their engines...


cheers

Joe
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