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Old 02-09-2014, 03:51 PM   #1
Gripsteruser OP
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R100 camshaft oil source?

Have looked for diagrams in Haynes and Clymer manuals with no luck.
Found a .pdf on Snowbum's site but can't expand it far enough.

How are the cam lobes oiled on the R100 engine?

I've had flaked lifters and slightly damaged camshaft lobes replaced and I'm trying to understand if there's something I can do differently in seasonal storage to prevent this from happening again. (Such as cranking over much longer to ensure good lube flow to the cams. Or cranking over periodically in storage without running to refresh the oil film. Or putting way too much oil in the crankcase to submerge the cam - then draining some before running again - etc.)
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Old 02-09-2014, 04:09 PM   #2
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How long have you had the bike, and what kind of oil have you used for the last fifty-thousand miles......



What you are seeing is probably from a well-documented change in the oil formulations.... these bikes are known as being "flat tappets" which require a high-zinc oil, and most of today's oils are NOT high zinc. (Zinc has a detrimental effect on the catalytic converters in most cars, so the gummint changed the oil spec, and engines had to be designed with different cams)

We all try to find high-zinc oils, which can be found in many oils, but you have to know what to look for... (motorcycle racing oils, diesel-engine oils, etc all work fine for our old bikes)

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Old 02-09-2014, 04:18 PM   #3
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I believe the cam lobes and tappets are not pressure oiled they are splash oiled.

Somebody else may disagree with this, I'd like to know if I'm wrong. So stand by for the flames.

BTW bpeckm is right.
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Old 02-09-2014, 04:27 PM   #4
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Lifters and cam are being changed out at 40k. (1988 R100GS) Fresh oil at every storage.

No short trips - rarely ride it less than 30 min, more likely to ride 3 hrs.
But haven't been putting in lots of miles for the last 10 years.

I've been using Mobil 1 15W-50 for the last 35,000 mi. Has the ZDDP.
I've already looked into that. (But I'd be willing to consider other oils.)
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Old 02-09-2014, 04:36 PM   #5
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The cam lobes are oiled mostly by the oil that squirts out of the rod big end bearings and to a lesser extent by the oil that squirts that way out of the main bearings. That amounts to a LOT of oil.

Your lifters are not flaking while the bike is being stored. Quite the opposite. They are flaking while the bike is running. Flaking is a well known inherent problem with our lifter design regardless of the what engine design they are in. They all sometimes do it in every engine design they are in regardless of zinc content in the oil or other variables although good oil is a BIG help. It is NO guarantee that your lifters will not flake. Some lifters don't flake and others do for their metallurgy. Your best bet is replacing ONLY the flaked lifters since the ones that are already in there and haven't flaked yet probably never will whereas you're taking the gamble all over again with new ones.

High zinc oil? BMW brand 20/50 Dino oil is a very good high zinc oil made by Spectro Oil which is a VERY good brand oil. Spectro Oil in a BMW wrapper is around $2 less per quart than if it were simply Spectro Oil. GREAT deal!

supershaft screwed with this post 02-09-2014 at 05:00 PM
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Old 02-09-2014, 05:06 PM   #6
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Thanks SS.

All 4 of my lifters flaked. The cam ramps are slightly rough. (I guess I should post some pictures shouldn't I?)

I'm speculating that in storage a tiny spec of rust on the bare cam ramp can turn into damage.

I stored the bike for 2 years while unemployed so I'm wondering if that caused issues. (Colo climate, winter sees high garage humidity when warm slushy car is pulled into the garage where the bike is stored - could condense that moisture on cold bare metal.)

I'd like to positively put an oil film on the cam ramps for storage but don't know how to accomplish it. Trying to do a full warmup ride monthly might also work but is not reliable before I retire.
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Old 02-09-2014, 05:25 PM   #7
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Storage under adverse conditions could certainly have a effect but I think it is a metallurgy problem as SS says and the choice of oil. Mobile 1 is supposed to have Zinc? Mobile 1 is used by everybody's modern catalytic converter car so this seems to be a contradiction.
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Old 02-09-2014, 05:26 PM   #8
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Does regular Rotella non-synth have the zinc? That's what I've been using for a few years.
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Old 02-09-2014, 05:27 PM   #9
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Letting an engine idle for any length of time, either warming up or hot, is the worst thing you can do for cam and lifters regardless of what kind of oil you are using. Cold climate of hot fire up and slowly ride off.
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Old 02-09-2014, 05:37 PM   #10
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I work with a lot of diesel mechanics (marine diesels) and their advice is to crank over engine with the fuel stop "off" (which, on a bike, would be to pull the power feed to the coil) and let the engine oil pump lube. Modern oils are good protection for quite a while... you might want to crank it over a couple of times a year when in storage.

The diesel guys say that you should either run the engine to full-hot oil, so that any water vapor in the oil is vaporized, or just run it for 20 seconds or so to distribute oil through the galleries. Worst thing you can do is run it for five or ten minutes where it starts to get warm and then attracts condensation as parts cool!! Pretty much the same reasoning as to why stop and go driving will kill an exhaust system in our cars, the moisture is never fully driven out!

Rotella is a diesel-rated oil, so yes, it does have the zddp. So does Texaco Ursa, the Chevron Delo etc. The common thread is that diesel engines, by design, have the same cam-lobe configuration as 'traditional' gas engines, yet they don't have the emission-control-requirements of the catalytic.

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Old 02-09-2014, 05:59 PM   #11
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What is different on modern cams and lifters? Is it metallurgy or design?
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Old 02-09-2014, 06:15 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by disston View Post
Storage under adverse conditions could certainly have a effect but I think it is a metallurgy problem as SS says and the choice of oil. Mobile 1 is supposed to have Zinc? Mobile 1 is used by everybody's modern catalytic converter car so this seems to be a contradiction.
M1 15W-50 is not what is used in cars with cats. It has 1200 or 1400 ppm ZDDP. So it's good.


Supershaft answered my question. You guys are reviewing information I already have and have thought about.
It's not a lack of zinc. It's not my storage technique - at least to the first level.

So maybe the next question is - how much oil would it take to submerge the cam for storage?

(would have posted pictures but my webhost just did an update - and broke may ability to do that. God how I DESPISE "updates"!)
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Old 02-09-2014, 07:37 PM   #13
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Good old STP is a zinc additive and inexpensive.
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Old 02-09-2014, 09:59 PM   #14
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There was a UOA of M1 on the M/C forum on BITOG , and after 6000 miles it still had almost all 1200 ppm of zink .

Not surprising, as it only gets used when the oil breaks down, and that doesnt happen with a quality oil like M1 unless something serious is wrong.

There is no restriction on the amount of Zink in current SN/CF A3/B4 oils in the grades used in our airheads , or if you use a JASO MA 1 oil.
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Old 02-09-2014, 10:30 PM   #15
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My cam is splashed.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature...&v=wQUb8QOWfYk
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