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#306633 - 04/05/10 12:47 pm proper top end break in  
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NoLib T140 Offline
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My t140 has just had new pistons .060 over installed. I want to break in the new top end properly. Any restrictions on how to do this. I am in Philly downtown and backroads are about 45 min away. How long can one run on the highway? what rpms? How do I approoach hills, etc?


Northern Liberties
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#306650 - 04/05/10 3:15 pm Re: proper top end break in [Re: NoLib T140]  
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HI NL,

You can add a name to your posts that would make it much easier than typing out Nothern Liberties each time. laughing

You are in for some fun. They pull so hard when breaking in.

1) You should be aware that the head will need re-torquing, and valves reset after heating and letting the engine cool. So if you did not do the work, consult your builder.

2) The idea is to get some compression behind the rings.

3) So you want to move the rpms up and down, from like 3,000 to 4,000 rpm. Acceleration is your friend and fun. Use the gears. Do not lug or baby the engine. So, drive like you stole it.

4) I would think you are going to have much more of a challenge doing that in city driving. I would trailer it to the country. Or pick a time when there is no traffic. Actually racing between lights might not be such a bad idea. Long as the lights are not too long.

5) Your choice of oil is critical. Do not use an automotive oil. Some use a diesal. But beware to use lower rated on. You can use a non detergent lower rated auto oil, like SB rated from Napa, 30 or 40 weight if you can get that. SG rated, motorcycle oil would be great, like Spectro HD, but it only comes in straight 50, or 20/50. To tell you the truth, I do not konw if straight 50 is too much for the break in. Do about 50 miles on the first ride. Then change it. If you do not have an external oil filter, it would a good idea to get on.

In the US, the philosophy of Oil Brewers is to use additives to max out the slippnerness of the stuff. All they think of is wear. So you might end up with moly in an auto oil. And you want the rings to wear in.

6) Use a good gas with high Octane..

7) Hills. Do not lug, do same as above. You might want to make sure you do not use the engine to hold speed on the decline. Keep gas on. I am not sure of this, but Decel's with engine can bring more oil up to top end. You want the rings to wear in before the cylinders glaze, and more oil will glaze. That is my reasoning. So roll on, Roll off.

Last edited by btour; 04/05/10 4:33 pm. Reason: Slow brain

Bob, Lifetime bike: '71 T120R, bought in '71 at Ken Heanes, England.
#306654 - 04/05/10 3:25 pm Re: proper top end break in [Re: NoLib T140]  
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I'd truck it out to some winding country road before running at a constant speed on a highway. Once there warm it up by riding at various speeds, don't let it idle more than a minute or so for many,many miles. Keep it above 3,000 rpm and below about 6,000. Shift up, shift down, brake. Repeat, repeat, repeat. Don't do this in traffic as someone will run you over or shoot you. If you must, turn around and rerun a section of road that will let you do this safely. Your patience will be rewarded. If you've done your job right and have the correct oil. A hundred miles of this should suffice. Then go for it.


1968 T120R
1972 T120RV
Any advice given is without a warranty expressed or implied.
#306658 - 04/05/10 3:38 pm Re: proper top end break in [Re: desco]  
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NoLib T140 Offline
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Philly, Pa
Thanks everyone. I am thinking about riding it to the Norton meet at Washington's Crossing in a few weeks. If I go I will stay off the highway to get there. Normally it is a 1/2 hour blast up I95. I just don't want to do that to new top end.

-Bruce


Northern Liberties
#306659 - 04/05/10 3:41 pm Re: proper top end break in [Re: desco]  
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Quote:
If you must, turn around and rerun a section of road that will let you do this safely


Be aware that it a violation to do a U-turn on a state highway. laughing

So the idea is that you want to be in control of your speed not the other cars ahead and behind you.

Do not, I repeat Do Not follow a friend on a Harley when breaking in. You want to ride it opposite of the way those Harleys ride. Lug Lug glug glug. As a matter of fact that is good advice any time.


Bob, Lifetime bike: '71 T120R, bought in '71 at Ken Heanes, England.
#306694 - 04/05/10 9:09 pm Re: proper top end break in [Re: NoLib T140]  
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From the second you fire it up,put it in gear and put a load on it.2-3 seconds of full load,then back off for 2-3 seconds;just keep doing it,on then off.The engine will not run any hotter than if you stayed at constant speed,I believe they actually run cooler.Try to stay at about 3000-4000 rpm,and try to wear out the throttle cables.
It should only take about 50 miles to seat cast iron rings.Chrome-plated rings take a lot longer.
A re-torque and tappet setting,after about 5 minutes run and a cool-off period,is a good idea.Running at full-load,or with throttle closed,causes no problem.Light to medium loads can cook the rings.

Last edited by Pete R; 04/05/10 9:27 pm. Reason: "A re-torque - - - - ."
#306722 - 04/06/10 12:00 am Re: proper top end break in [Re: Pete R - R.I.P.]  
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All above is good. I might add that the evenings right now are especially good for break-in being cool. New top ends run hot, so cool temps help.

I also believe the break-in oil is almost as important as the riding technique. No synthetics. No car oils. If you can do this in 60F and 70F temps, then I prefer 15W40 4-stroke diesel oil from WalMart for the fist several hundred miles. Then change out to 20W50 "motorcycle oil".

And make sure the tank is topped up all the way. It's going to burn some.

bigt


Don't hide 'em, Ride 'em !!

RF Whatley
Cornelia, GA

"Shop Boy" at Rodi British Bikes
#306787 - 04/06/10 12:17 pm Re: proper top end break in [Re: RF Whatley]  
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I planned an all backroad ride out of the city w/a friend on saturday. It will be 60 degrees and he is breaking in a modern parallel twin, kawasaki versys type bike. I will pay attention to rpm range and shift down for hills and try not to lug motor.

-Bruce


Northern Liberties
#306830 - 04/06/10 4:55 pm Re: proper top end break in [Re: NoLib T140]  
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Bruce, it is the getting out of the city to the back roads that you want to avoid. The Versys is essentially a different animal being modern mfg. and water cooled, practically ready to go off the showroom floor. Just my personnal preference here so take it for what it's worth, I ride alone when breaking in a new bike, no temptation or distractions to change my M.O. and few people will like to be on & off the throttle and through the gears only to back off and start all over again as I do. Then I will stop and rest us both for a slight cool down & leak check before exactly same treatment on return to base for complete cool down, leak ck ,retorque, valve set, oil change etc. For me this is very hard to do with another rider. Above all avoid idling and constant throttle cruise on anything resembling a freeway, doesn't hurt to raise the needle one notch richer either...Mark

#306833 - 04/06/10 5:03 pm Re: proper top end break in [Re: MarksterTT]  
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+1


Don't hide 'em, Ride 'em !!

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#306843 - 04/06/10 5:32 pm Re: proper top end break in [Re: RF Whatley]  
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+1 Forget the friend. All like Markster says.


Bob, Lifetime bike: '71 T120R, bought in '71 at Ken Heanes, England.
#306856 - 04/06/10 6:26 pm Re: proper top end break in [Re: btour]  
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Nolib,

You may be in the situation where the buddy has the trailer. I can relate to that. Just get it clear that, you go in one direction and he the other and meet back at the car in 1hour and half. Else so Philly at night. Just keep making rights on red, to a long block and continue.


Bob, Lifetime bike: '71 T120R, bought in '71 at Ken Heanes, England.
#306967 - 04/07/10 12:43 pm Re: proper top end break in [Re: btour]  
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Thanks for the advice everyone. Don't worry my friend will follow me and will be patient with my riding technique. Its just good to have someone there for moral supoort if there is a breakdown. How many miles does it take to "break in" and how will one know that the motor is "broken in"?
-Bruce


Northern Liberties
#306970 - 04/07/10 1:13 pm Re: proper top end break in [Re: NoLib T140]  
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Originally Posted By: NoLib T140
How many miles does it take to "break in" and how will one know that the motor is "broken in"?
-Bruce


Hi Bruce,

You are not breaking in the entire motor. Just the top end. Right? Even so it is hard to say. The rings should "seat" certainly within the first 50 miles. It is sort of curve, I think. You will feel it. The engine will pull harder and harder getting better and better, within the first five miles. So, like I said. you are in for a treat. Unfortuneately, this feeling of getting better and better, does not go on forever laughing.

Now they will seat, but maybe not completely within the first 50. Sometimes expressed as, they seat but do not seal. Thus some oil getting past them. All this depends upon a lot of stuff. Like how everything was prepared. The idea is to get compression behind the rings. You are in a race to seat, before glazing occurs. So just keep riding it like advised above, for I dunno, 300 miles? Who is to know? 1000? Certainly by 1500 any seating or sealing should have happened. The basic idea is you do not want to do a steady cruise for awhile.

Anyway, it is fun way to ride.


Bob, Lifetime bike: '71 T120R, bought in '71 at Ken Heanes, England.
#307098 - 04/08/10 5:51 am Re: proper top end break in [Re: btour]  
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No way to say exactly in miles because it depends on so many variables such as ring material, cyl. material and surface finish, lubricant used and how willing you are to ride it in a manner that loads the engine so that ring seating can take place. If the cyl. finish is correct for rings and you provide the load then I'd say the first 50 miles is the most important but even at that, I wouldn't be lured into chasing buds on freeway ride at a steady high speed until I had several hundred miles on engine. I know of several recent rebuilds where Triumph owners ended up on high speed freeway rides instead of break in rides only to have piston & or ring problems. The "Seated rings" transmit the pistons heat into the cylinder walls, if they haven't seated, making good contact with cyl.wall, then the piston does the only thing it can and that is to expand and usually ends in either full or partial seizure. To many guys get their bike back together just in time for the big ride...there's always another ride but you only get to break it in right once. Anyway, have fun and the suggestion for 1 notch richer on the needles was to have the richer/cooler mixture in the range you will be using mostly...esp. important if you do hit the super slab sooner than later (this suggestion is only for break in).

#307120 - 04/08/10 10:04 am Re: proper top end break in [Re: NoLib T140]  
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Originally Posted By: NoLib T140
How many miles does it take to "break in" and how will one know that the motor is "broken in"?
-Bruce


You may like to get out the compression tester. It will be a good indicator of ring seal and therfore be "broken in". Did someone say to stay away from oil loaded with friction inhibitors. This old tart will need some friction. RR

Last edited by RetroRod; 04/08/10 10:06 am.

'72 Bonneville
"He who praises you for what you lack wishes to take from you what you have." - Don Juan Manuel
#307132 - 04/08/10 12:18 pm Re: proper top end break in [Re: RetroRod]  
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I tried picking up bike from shop last night, but on a test drive the bike died while driving and then had spark knock afterward. Possible timing spark issue. Plugs were lean after 1 run and rich after another. There is a Boyer w/2 6v coils in it. They had inconsistent timing readings from side to side before. I am glad it acted up there than me driving it down the road elsewhere. Ah, the saga continues...
-Bruce


Northern Liberties
#307141 - 04/08/10 1:24 pm Re: proper top end break in [Re: NoLib T140]  
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Originally Posted By: NoLib T140
I tried picking up bike from shop last night, but on a test drive the bike died while driving and then had spark knock afterward. Possible timing spark issue. Plugs were lean after 1 run and rich after another. There is a Boyer w/2 6v coils in it. They had inconsistent timing readings from side to side before. I am glad it acted up there than me driving it down the road elsewhere. Ah, the saga continues...
-Bruce


Bruce,

May I deduct from this post that a shop has done the mechanicals and is handing it over to you to ride?

If so, then you need to be quite clear from the repairer a couple of things. This "spark knock" description is a bit concerning and you need to be satisfied that ignition timing is set by a strobe light at Boyer's recommended 5000rpm .

1. You'd like to know if grey cast rings have been fitted?

2. What hone finish was used on the barrel?

3.Did the shop "bed" the rings in for you accordance with conventional guidelines?

4. The shop needs to confirm they have erred on the side of rich mixture, rather tahn lean, during the running-in period. A combination of lean mixture and advanced timing could have fatal consequences for the old tart.

5. Have they chosen a suitable running-in oil for the run-in?

6. Has the cylinder head been re-torqued following the initial run, or are they providing this service for you. It ceratinly needs to be done very quickly, say after a 5 mile run? Tappet clearances need to be checked following a retorque.

Having to time an EI with a brand new top end is a bit of quandary for you. On one hand correct ignition timing is critical for the new engine. On the other hand you'd prefer not to have it free revved out to 5000rpm without load, whilst someone finally gets a satisfactory strobe setting. Better to have sorted the timing out prior to the rebuild than after.

It certainly appears to have a timing problem, most likely advanced timing, the very thing you'd seek to avoid for this new engine.

I apologise for the melancholy tone here, but the reality is that many engine failures start right here, at startup. Best to get it right now than be fixing it again later. RR


'72 Bonneville
"He who praises you for what you lack wishes to take from you what you have." - Don Juan Manuel
#307147 - 04/08/10 1:34 pm Re: proper top end break in [Re: RetroRod]  
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Beware valve adjuster lock nuts that are not properly tightened and come loose! One on the easiest things to check FIRST.

Then, check that the ignition rotor center screw is also nice and tight, or else the timing is adrift and won't get better on it's own.

Best time to check everything for looseness is after the very first run. Do a full re-torque and general check, take another run, then check it all again.

Next, do your first oil change after the first 1/2 tank of gas.

One more re-torque all around.

They settle in pretty well after that.


GrandPaul (does not use emoticons)
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Too many bikes to list, mostly Triumph & Norton, some BSA & European
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#307152 - 04/08/10 1:45 pm Re: proper top end break in [Re: GrandPaul]  
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They did the intitial bedding of the rings and they always have me ride before it leaves to make sure I am satisfied. I am not sure what exactly is going on now, but the ran it, check plugs after each run, had a borescope looking down the cylinders, stethoscope to listen for noises. It was pretty intense. They may put points back in it to make sure timing is working right. I am excited but am giving them breathing room to sort this out.
-Bruce


Northern Liberties
#307226 - 04/08/10 11:50 pm Re: proper top end break in [Re: NoLib T140]  
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Pete R - R.I.P. Offline
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I can't see how you get timing difference between cylinders with a Boyer,but anything is possible.Most likely the problem would be in the rotor.
This is not a good time to be running the engine with no load,while checking timing.

The beauty of points is that you can do most of the adjustments with the engine stopped.Also you only need to rev the engine to 3000 to double-check the full advance figure.

Any time the engine knocks under load ,it is far better to retard the timing plate by moving it about 0.050" than to continue.

Last edited by Pete R; 04/09/10 1:04 am. Reason: spelling
#307231 - 04/09/10 12:03 am Re: proper top end break in [Re: NoLib T140]  
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Originally Posted By: NoLib T140
There is a boyer w/2 6v coils in it. They had inconsistent timing readings from side to side before.


Pete -

I was confused about that too....(i.e. Boyer: different advance on each cylinder) then when I re-read Bruce's post, perhaps he meant "before" as in "when it had points"

Bruce, can you confirm or deny?

Steve


'77 T140J
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#307241 - 04/09/10 12:54 am Whoooooa !! [Re: NoLib T140]  
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Originally Posted By: NoLib T140
Its just good to have someone there for moral support if there is a breakdown.


Bruce -
Sorry buddy. No one said anything about being here if you broke down. When ever we see those two words we skee-dattle. Of course, we need to be positive, so look at the bright side. If you make it back alive, then we'll all be happy to slap you on the back and drink your beer.

laughing laughing laughing


Don't hide 'em, Ride 'em !!

RF Whatley
Cornelia, GA

"Shop Boy" at Rodi British Bikes
#307248 - 04/09/10 1:17 am Re: Whoooooa !! [Re: NoLib T140]  
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Pete R - R.I.P. Offline
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Originally Posted By: NoLib T140
They did the intitial bedding of the rings
-Bruce

How did they do this if they couldn't load the engine without it knocking?
The only way I know of is to lap the rings into the bore using BON-AMI,prior to assembly.This works quite well,but very few people do it.

#307310 - 04/09/10 12:51 pm Re: Whoooooa !! [Re: Pete R - R.I.P.]  
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Jubilee, I had points in the bike 14 yrs ago when I first purchased the bike. The Boyer timing trouble had started recently and was there before and after the top end rebuild. The problem seems to be intermittent. They did the initial ring break in without having the spark knock issue. I would think that inconsistent timing per cylinder could be a problem in the brain box, not the rotor. They want to put points back in so they can physically see that the advance is working properly. When I first road it if felt great, but after I road it a bit longer it died while riding, I dropped it a few gears and popped the clutch and it fired back up. After that I heard the spark knock. They checked the plugs and it was lean. Took it out again and then it was rich.


Northern Liberties
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