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  #1  
Old 5 Aug 2005
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Why is She using oil?

I have an '04 640 Adventure, brought with 300miles on the clock in Jan this year.
At 650miles it had it's first service at Bracken.
After about 1000miles I noticed that she was using oil and put in 300ml.
I put in another 100ml 1500miles later.

The 2nd service was done by Motorite who was adamant that I was overfilling the bike, but couldn't show me any evidence of that having occurred (oil in air filter or coming out of the engine breather pipe)

The bike now has 7000miles on the clock and is still using oil at a rate of approximately 100ml every 1000miles.

I ride the bike quite hard and do a large amount of long distance riding, cruising at about 75mph.
There has never been any evidence of smoking, even when I overtop it and the sparkplug is a dark grey/mild black colour.

I have had other KTM owners look at the bike and watch it while I am riding and they agree that it is using oil. I have also spoken to swampy and received his opinion on why this is happening.

Before taking corrective action, I am interested in other theories from all of you gurus out there as to what you think the problem could be/similar experiences.

Thanks
Geoff

(ps. took the bike back to Motorite yesterday to prove to him that the bike was using oil and all he could say was "KTM's don't use oil." Mmm, must be a figment of my overactive imagination then)
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  #2  
Old 5 Aug 2005
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Hmm, what a bugger.

are there any black puddles under your bike when you stop?

you dont provide much info.

Brian (motorite) knows his stuff. It shouldnt use any oil but clearly yours is.

what level is the oil in the sight glass
- cold? - should be at the bottom mark
- hot? - should be at the top mark

- the plug sounds rich - what size jets/exhaust system/mods does it have?

- why do friends sauy its using oil when they watch? i assume blue smoke but you dont say why.

- what did swampy say? he is the guru. take it to him.

mine only use oil when its leaking. none (touch wood) have ever burnt it.

I presume you bought it secondhand at 300 miles but who owned it before and how had it been ridden?

- Can you not contact them - their name and address is on your V5?

- I suggest you post the same question on Advrider.com there are some gurus there too, but you'll need to provide more info.

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  #3  
Old 6 Aug 2005
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"Hmm, what a bugger.
are there any black puddles under your bike when you stop?"
Hope not, I'm sure I'll have noticed by now ; )

"Brian (motorite) knows his stuff."
Well this has him stumped, he's known about the problem for the last 5000miles, has serviced the bike in between and hasn't even offered suggestions

"what level is the oil in the sight glass
- cold? - should be at the bottom mark
- hot? - should be at the top mark"
That's right, thats where it should be-and probably is on your bike. THat's where it is on my bike... just after topping up.

"- the plug sounds rich - what size jets/exhaust system/mods does it have?"
Checking that tomorrow

"- why do friends sauy its using oil when they watch? i assume blue smoke but you dont say why."
As above, no blue smoke, these people rode 2000miles with me through the Pyrenees and were as sceptical at first as you are, but finally, after seeing my oil-check regime, examining the bike for leaks etc and seeing no smoke, had to agree that it was using oil,but they couldn't see how

"- what did swampy say? he is the guru. take it to him."
He reckons(and I agree with him but would like more opinions) that FUlly synth was used in the engine too soon and it hasn't had a chance to run in properly. Resulting in a glazed barrel, which allows minute amounts of oil up past the rings, amounts minute enough not to be noticed, but that add up over time.

"mine only use oil when its leaking. none (touch wood) have ever burnt it."
As every other KTM I know

"I presume you bought it secondhand at 300 miles but who owned it before and how had it been ridden?"
Picked the bike up from the owner, it was parked up in his garage and appeared to be in mint condition. He had brought it on recommendation and didn't like it, so had been sitting in his garage for exactly a year.

"- Can you not contact them - their name and address is on your V5?"
Already have, no light shed on the problem

"- I suggest you post the same question on Advrider.com there are some gurus there too, but you'll need to provide more info."
Already posted on KTM tech, thanks

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  #4  
Old 6 Aug 2005
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Hello Geoff,
Im no guru at all but a bike standing in a garage for a whole year sounds very bad, i bet you he never started it up or took it for a short spin. So all the oil every single last drop has drained down leaving everything above bone dry for 12 months. Wild guess, an/all piston rings has "collapsed" if i could call it that, wild guess i say again.Constant lubrication is essential like we all know,with bikes or birds. Good luck
Stef
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  #5  
Old 11 Aug 2005
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Hi Geoff
I have a 2005 KTM 640 and at 10 000 km am starting to hav ethe same problem and cant find out why bike is going for 4th service so will let you you if anything crops up.

Regards Tag
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  #6  
Old 11 Aug 2005
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Thanks for your doom and gloom forecast Steph.
Fortunately it's not that, 'cos if the rings had collapsed, my bike would be creating a smokescreen.

Thanks for that Tag, I posted this same thread on KTM talk and I have had a few people responding to say that their KTM's also use oil.
LEt me know if any clues come up during your bikes 4th service. (10000k already on your '05? you're getting some serious mileage done on your bike. Good on 'yer!)

[This message has been edited by Geoff van de Merwe (edited 10 August 2005).]
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  #7  
Old 15 Aug 2005
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Geoff,

A post I wrote for the Honda Tech section a few years ago:

I know this is an old topic but I thought I would add a point for those people who may be experiencing similar problems or are buying a new bike.
I have heard of, and experienced similar problems in the past and have managed to trace the problem back to the initial run in period.

It had been proven that running in your bike properly when it is new is a hugely important part of determining the engine life. Obviously you take it easy and follow the guidelines given by the manufacturer increasing the revs and use of hard/soft acceleration over a fixed mileage period etc.

HOWEVER, what you dont do is use really high quality synthetic oils (or possibly semi synthetic oils) during run in periods. Part of the run in process is your engine parts mating to each other perfectly to form tight seals and nicely mating surfaces. This applpies to the bore and piston rings more obviously than most engine locations after running in.

When you first get a bike the bore of the cylinder is lightly cut into a criss cross pattern so that the bore will wear in the rings to fit it perfectly (to prevent burning of oil!). After xxxx miles the bore will wear to a perfect glaze and whatever shape your piston rings are at this point they will remain so for the rest of the engine life unless changed. If the piston rings were being lubricated so well by the top spec oil you were using to run the bike in that they didnt wear at all then you will get a bike that will always burn/use oil.

The only fix is to get your pot off the bike and glaze bust (hone) it, fit new rings and run in again.

Althouth this solution is generally only applicable if you have a smoking engine I have experienced a very lightly (barely noticable) smoking engine which used a LOT of oil and was fixed by this solution.

Hope this helps those running in and those with problems and avoids people wanting the 'best' for their bike to early in life and creating problems for themselves (like I did!!!!)

Dave l

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  #8  
Old 23 Aug 2005
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Lots of bikes use oil, it just gets burnt up. 100ml in 1500 miles or 2500kms doesnt seem so bad to me, especially if you are riding it hard. My YZF750 used more than 100ml every 1000kms and was within service limits, also needed new front disks every 3000kms, while the G/S BMW needs to have a few litres carried around with it anywhere.
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  #9  
Old 22 Sep 2005
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I agree about usage. Just did a quick 4K mile trip in the USA. All types of riding including rough dirt and super highway. Used about .75 Liter of syn oil. No big deal. Bike runs fine and good mileage. Runs cool too. Oil needs a change.
Bill.
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  #10  
Old 22 Sep 2005
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My Thunderace uses quite a bit of oil, despite having been carefully run in using non-synthetic oil. For an interesting (and controversial) angle on this issue, see this website:
http://www.mototuneusa.com/break_in_secrets.htm

I haven't been game to try what is recommended. It may work, but maybe only in a racebike engine where longevity is not the aim - after all, some racebikes get rebuilt for every race.
Neil.
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