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#702345 - 07/21/17 8:01 am S29 Sloper  
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BevanC Offline
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Hi folks,
Could someone please tell me if my 1929 500cc ohv Sloper has any form of crankcase breather ?

From other's photos I have seen, the adjustable primary side oiler passes oil from a "ledge" in the upper left case via a small gallery. I wondered if that also acted as a sort of breather; though I had read somewhere that there was a mainshaft hole for this purpose.
When I spin the engine over with the primary cover off I can hear a "wheeze" that sounds as if it might be coming from the crank end, but I can't be sure. No sign of air movement via oiler boss.

Cheers,
Bevan

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#702439 - 07/22/17 8:24 am Re: S29 Sloper [Re: BevanC]  
Joined: May 2004
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BSA_WM20 Online content
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Sydney Australia
I would have bet that there was one but just checked the 29 parts book and there is none listed.
The 250's, 350's & twins all have a part number for "crank case air valve body" but none for the 500's
There is no metion of any vent in the 29 handbook for model's L S & H


Bike Beesa
Trevor
#702467 - 07/22/17 3:29 pm Re: S29 Sloper [Re: BevanC]  
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Elijah Offline
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South Africa.
My 1935 BSA W35/7 had a drilling through the drive side mainshaft & cross drilled to lube the cush drive , earlier model may have the same set up ....

#702495 - 07/22/17 11:55 pm Re: S29 Sloper [Re: BevanC]  
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BevanC Offline
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Thanks for the input guys. I've been pointed to something in the 1930 owners handbook: " Lubrication is arranged for the engine shaft cush-drive by oil mist passing from the crankcase through a hole in the mainshaft".

So perhaps this is, in effect, a breather of sorts.

I had thought that a blocked breather could perhaps have been a contributor to the major leak I have out the oil pump tell-tale plunger. I've made a fairly tight fitting felt seal (which I realise are next to useless), the pump is turned down very low, and I've checked that there are no obstructions in the timing cover oilways etc.. There does appear to be a bit of corrosion in the plunger shaft, so perhaps the solution is to make a new one. I don't expect oil-tightless, but at the moment, even a 2 or 3 km ride results in oil pissing out the plunger.

Cheers,
Bevan

#702900 - 07/26/17 8:44 pm Re: S29 Sloper [Re: BevanC]  
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Gui d'Orey Offline
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Germany
On my '29 OHV sloper I always have a steady stream of oil coming out of the tell-tale shaft. Until now I have found no solution... The Tell-Tale plunger is the crankcase breather. Also on the main drive side, there is an oil drip for the main chain, also controlled by a similar knurled knob, just like on the timing side for the main oil flow. I have about 1/8 to a 1/4 turn on for the main oil flow which works fine for the engine, but the oil still leaks out of the plunger...

I also tried to get into the plunger assembly to put a felt ring on the shaft, but the cap is pressed into the shaft and brazed welded or "hammerd" on for lack of better word. So in the end I lost the courage to pull it apart to install the seal. At the moment I just let it trickel on, and wipe it clean after avery ride. If you manage to find a solution, please let me know.

Cheers
Gui

#702903 - 07/26/17 9:01 pm Re: S29 Sloper [Re: Gui d'Orey]  
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BevanC Offline
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New Zealand
Thanks Gui for the reply - a bit disappointing that your Sloper has the same issue. My plunger shaft definitely has some pitting which could contribute to the leak. The end cap on my tell tale is threaded; I was a bit anxious but managed to unscrew it after carefully removing a peened over end. It is supposed to have a felt seal which I have fitted but it has made little difference. It is winter here and not ideal for motorcycling, so I think I will get a new, good fitting plunger made, perhaps with a better sort of seal if I can find something suitable. I'll post any progress.
Cheers
Bevan

p.s.

here's a link to a picture of my tell-tale:

https://drive.google.com/open?id=0BwR9TvAxfYrnbHVRREFpNENsRzg

Looks like I have to give individual permission for people to open it - I'll do that for anyone who does - it sends me an automatic request. I'll put any future imafges somewhere else so there isn't this extra step needed.


Last edited by BevanC; 07/26/17 11:22 pm. Reason: add image link
#702905 - 07/26/17 9:22 pm Re: S29 Sloper [Re: BevanC]  
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Gui d'Orey Offline
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Germany
If I find a solution, I'll let you know as well. It is very annoying, indeed.
BTW, how did you remove the peened over end? Could be the same on mine, and I thought it was soldered or riveted on.

#702911 - 07/26/17 9:41 pm Re: S29 Sloper [Re: Gui d'Orey]  
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BevanC Offline
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I thought I could see a thread when I looked at it with a magnifying glass, so used a fine engraving tool to etch off small amounts of metal from the shaft end until I could unscrew it. A bit nerve wracking since they are pretty much irreplaceable !

#702925 - 07/26/17 11:25 pm Re: S29 Sloper [Re: BevanC]  
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chaterlea25 Online content
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Cork Ireland
Hi All,
Bevan I cannot see from your pic where the original "seal" is fitted?
Its a little different to my Rudge one where a pressed in disc holds a seal in on the outer face ( I made a replacement from a neoprene car rocker box gasket)
Looking at the pic I wonder if an O ring groove could be cut in the "piston!" ?

John

#702927 - 07/26/17 11:58 pm Re: S29 Sloper [Re: chaterlea25]  
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BevanC Offline
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New Zealand
Hi John,
I am not obsessive about stopping all leaks, but this one is so bad, it makes the bike unpleasant to ride (and very embarrassing when you stop in a friends driveway).

The photo was as removed - there was no seal present when I got the bike. I made a felt one and put it ahead of the spring, but it seemed to fold a bit, so then I put a slightly loose O ring between the spring and the felt seal to give it a bit of rigidity. Also tried a modified valve guide seal someone gave me. Still was useless I'm afraid. The spring was not powerful enough to return the plunger when I also tried a more close fitting O ring with no felt seal. I could try a stronger I guess, but that will of course alter oil pressure "indication" that the tell-tale provides.

An O ring groove in the piston is an interesting idea I had not thought of. I wonder how it would cope with sliding across the cross-hole that is drilled through the fitting, and whether the spring pressure would be sufficient to return it..

I think I'll make a replacement plunger first; then I could try your O ring idea without wrecking my existing one.

All a bit frustrating, given that the bike runs beautifully.

Thanks for your input.
Cheers,
Bevan
ps
If anyone wants to see the picture of the tell-tale, try this link, hopefully it will open straight up:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BwR9TvAxfYrnbHVRREFpNENsRzg/view?usp=sharing

#703109 - 07/28/17 1:36 pm Re: S29 Sloper [Re: BevanC]  
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Originally Posted by BevanC
Thanks for the input guys. I've been pointed to something in the 1930 owners handbook: " Lubrication is arranged for the engine shaft cush-drive by oil mist passing from the crankcase through a hole in the mainshaft".

So perhaps this is, in effect, a breather of sorts.

I had thought that a blocked breather could perhaps have been a contributor to the major leak I have out the oil pump tell-tale plunger. I've made a fairly tight fitting felt seal (which I realise are next to useless), the pump is turned down very low, and I've checked that there are no obstructions in the timing cover oilways etc.. There does appear to be a bit of corrosion in the plunger shaft, so perhaps the solution is to make a new one. I don't expect oil-tightless, but at the moment, even a 2 or 3 km ride results in oil pissing out the plunger.

Cheers,
Bevan


OK Bevan I have been through the riders handbook for 1929 models L - S & H.
That paragraph is not there.
The 29 book mentions lubing the front dchain via the oil pump.
In the maintenance section It states to clean & lightly oil the cush drive cam every 250 miles.
Under chains it recommends boiling them in graphite grease so looks like the 1930 misting was an upgrade for that year.
From the engine drawing the tell tale should be full of oil and not venting the crank case but you have got my brain working on this because I can see no reason to have breathers on the 250, 350 & twin but not on the 500 it makes no sense.


Bike Beesa
Trevor
#703951 - 08/04/17 6:48 pm Re: S29 Sloper [Re: BevanC]  
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Gui d'Orey Offline
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Germany
Hi Bevan,

It seems I#ve hat some success with the oil leak through the tell tale plunger.

I was setting the timing for the magneto and opened up the timing case. There is a felt ring on the crankshaft spigot/shaft that extends into the the tell tale valve on the inside of the timing case cover. I didn't have a replacement, so I just let the old one soak in petrol overnight and let it dry and smeared both sides (just the faces) with hylomar gasket sealant before assembly. Same treatment for the felt washers between magnto and timing case and on the one on the mag shaft on the inside of the timing case (between Magneto sprocket and timing case). The timong case cover also got a new gasket. I just went for a ride and lookee there - no more oil flowing out of the tell tale plunger. Also no more oil flowing out the back of the case through the magneto shaft, and no more drips aroound the timiing cover joint. The tell tale still works as normal, coming out as the engine is running and reving up, so evrything looks well. It seems the felt ring on the inside of the timing case plays a crucial role in limiting the amount of oil that does go into the tell tale plunger, and thereby avoiding the oil leak. Maybe getting the timing case oil tight also helped somehow, through some build up of pressure, but this is pure speculation of course. So do have a look and make sure the felt ring is there and in good condition. Again. it's on the crankshaft extension that goes into the opening for the tell tale on the inside of the timing cover, between the sprocket and cover.

Another idea if that still doesn't work. I was reading through a book I have on vintage bikes, and there is a section on different types manual of oil pumps and crankcase breathers used in vintage bikes (mostly british) There are some schematics and cross sectional views of different ones. Anyway, on many of them with similar plungers mechanisms liketo the tell tale on our BSA Sloper, use leather washers on the plungers. This could be worth a try as a sealent for the plunger, instead of the felt washer which you tried on yours. Leather washers were also used to seal shafts on vintage gearboxes for example, and I've herad some people say they actually are more effective than felt rings or modern oil seals...

Let me know if it works! I'll keep an eye on mine to see if the leak returns or not. I'm driving to a meet tomorrow so I'll get some milleage on the old girl. A good opportunity to see how it develops.

Cheers
Gui

#704016 - 08/05/17 5:19 am Re: S29 Sloper [Re: Gui d'Orey]  
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BevanC Offline
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New Zealand
Hi Gui,

It is great that you seem to have cured your tell-tale oil leak. I am envious, since it is really annoying, as you well know.

I am very surprised that fitting the missing felt seal between the crank and the timing cover outrigger bush solved your problem. Perhaps I have mis-understood things - I am a novice at this !

I presume the function of the felt seal is to try to reduce oil leakage into the timing chest from between the the crank & its bush and thus maximise the oil passing through the bush, into the crank end and thus to the big end. Surely, installing the washer (assuming it was effective, which is doubtful) could only increase the flow of oil to the tell-tale, not decrease it, making the leak worse ? Or not ??

I managed to eliminate my magneto pinion leak, just as you have done. I am puzzled though about the Hylomar on the crank seal - I think my felt seal rotates with the engine shaft, because it has put a nice polish on the chamfered head of the timing cover bush, so sealant wouldn't work for me.

My tell-tale has 3 tiny holes, just under the "head" of the mechanism and before the start of the thread, that I think are intended to allow any oil that does get past the tell-tale "plunger" to return to the timing chest via a small, slotted drilling at start of the thread in the timing cover. When I got the bike, the mechanism was screwed directly into the timing cover, which seemed a bit odd, so I used a fibre washer to help oil tightness of the mechanism itself. However, I noticed today that the 1929 parts book shows no washer, so I took mine out in the hope that it may have been preventing those small holes from registering correctly with the return hole in the timing cover. Unfortunately, a test ride showed no reduction in the tell-tale leakage, so I'm no further ahead.

I've got my oil pump turned well down, so that the tell-tale fluctuates quite a bit at idle, but is stuck out by 1/4 inch or so when riding.

I hope your ride out confirmed that it is only now leaking from where it is supposed to !

By the way, I would be happy to send you a small piece of oil felt if you did want to make a new seal - I had to buy much more than I needed to make mine. Although having got things oil tight, you are probably best to leave it alone !

Cheers,
Bevan

Last edited by BevanC; 08/05/17 5:28 am. Reason: added a ps
#704017 - 08/05/17 6:30 am Re: S29 Sloper [Re: BevanC]  
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Gui d'Orey Offline
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Germany
I know Bevan, it makes no sense, and I don't know why the leak stoped, but it did and it was the only thing I did. I didn't even disassemble the tell tale from the timing cover! Could an increased oil flow passing through the bush and crank have had an effect by raising the flow rate? I.e. Increased flow speed means the oil has "no time" to work its way up the plunger? No idea, but thought I'd let you know in spite of my surprise.

I did have a copper washer between the mechanism and timing cover, which I renewed when I got the bike - also in the hope of stoping the leak. Didn't actually check the parts book, but it would seam odd not to have one. Also where the oil flow regulator mechanism screws into the crankcase, there's one on my bike. I have the pump open only 1/4 of a turn, and seems to be enough. My tell tale works as you describe on yours.

The hylomar bit is to be honest just a bit daft. It was just a temporary solution to re use the old felt washer. One smears the faces on both sides, so in the end the felt washer doesn't turn with the shaft - it just seats on its shaft and the shaft turns in the washer. It'll probably not hold long, and its just temporary, since I'll start proper restoration in October. Just want to keep her running till the end of the season.

Thanks ver much for your kind offer, but it probably makes no sense to ship the material from new zealand to europe. I can source felt material, rings and so on here, I just didn't have any on hand.

Cheers

#704022 - 08/05/17 7:27 am Re: S29 Sloper [Re: BevanC]  
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BevanC Offline
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Hi Gui,
All really interesting for me. I've got a rebuild to do some time next year once I've finished rebuilding a Panther. I'd be keen to see photos of the disassembly/ rebuild if you have the time to take some - all info is useful to me, no matter how small.
All the best,
Bevan

#704039 - 08/05/17 12:59 pm Re: S29 Sloper [Re: BevanC]  
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Gui d'Orey Offline
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Germany
Hi Bevan,

Well, the meet didn't happen. Was on my way, but it started to rain and never stoped,and I turned back home half way there. Got completely drenched...

Anyway, did about 30kms and the leak is back. Much much less than before, but probably just a matter of time before it's back to "normal". Still interesting the effect of the felt seal, and really got me wondering if a new one will have a more lasting effect.

I will be taking pictures and lots of them, since both the manual and the parts book are useless as far as schematics. I'm also very interested in other's experiences with Slopers and someone must be able to tell us how to solve the problem, or let us know it's all useless and they simply leak....

Ta
Gui

#704072 - 08/05/17 8:14 pm Re: S29 Sloper [Re: Gui d'Orey]  
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BevanC Offline
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Damn, that's disappointing. I had intended to make a new felt seal today, just in case the one I made initially wasn't doing the job, but I won't bother now. I'm afraid we are in the unlucky minority Gui - I have talked to several other Sloper owners whose tell-tales don't leak (they all leak from elsewhere of course smile ).

I am guessing that, if you take yours apart, you will find that there is some play between the plunger and the barrel of the tell-tale. I absence of any other ideas, I think I'll find and engineer to make me a new plunger and shaft, so that it is a nice sliding fit in the barrel. May need to ream the barrel somehow to ensure it is circular first. I don't have the gear or skill to do this level of precision work, so will have to find someone who has.

Since i have had the oil pump etc.apart, and am happy that it is in good order, I had contemplated replacing the tell-tale with a blind cap - risky, but would make the bike rideable.

Please let me know if you have any bright ideas, either via the forum or I'd be happy for email contact - not too many Sloper owners around my part of the world.
Cheers,
Bevan
bevanw58@gmail.com


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