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Yamaha Tech Originally the Yamaha XT600 Tech Forum, due to demand it now includes all Yamaha's technical / mechanical / repair / preparation questions.
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  #1  
Old 15 Apr 2007
jim jim is offline
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Unhappy Stripped sump plug in Malawi -HELP!

I made a terrible mistake; I let someone else prepare my bike for the trip Im now on and the bastard stripped my sump plug which I only discovered during my first oil change on the SA Moz borber. I then had it "repaired" by a guy in Nelspruit who fitted an insert that i was not happy about. Well Ive just tried to screw out the sump plug to drain the oil only to find, though not to my surprise, that the whole insert came out and that the thread which was holding it in place is virtually non existant. So, now Im in Blantyre, Malawi with what i think is an M16 stripped thread in my casing.

The way i see it I have a few options (other than double homicide); I can have a helicoil fitted, but only I guess if there is enough meat left around the hole to take one? I could try a thread repair epoxy product which i have with me that claims to repair threads of all kinds, problem is that it seems to be designed for repairs to a hole where one can access the back of the hole to tape it up while the curing process happens. Of course i cant get to the back of the hole... Thirdly as a desperate fix i could have the hole welded closed and then only be able to change the oil in the oil tank, but it shold get me back to CT..

Any pearls of wisdom would be much appreciated... Condolences and moral support also accepted.

JIm
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Old 15 Apr 2007
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Another helicoil
One size up tap to SAE, not metric
Expandable rubber plug
Correct silicon with drain hole very clean, glue-in old plug/bolt
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Old 15 Apr 2007
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Which Xt ?? Which hole ??

Your best drilling the old thread out and then tapping out the hole to fit a bigger bolt.

Just make sure you drill the hole to the correct size before tapping it.

Buy a copper washer for the new bolt too.
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Old 15 Apr 2007
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I've put my bodging head on and thought that you may be able to make an oil tight seal with a bolt and washers if you could force a spring washer ( by squeezing it ) and the bolt head inside through the hole leaving the threaded part protruding and then tighten up with a copper washer ( or make one from some alu ) and a plain washer you may be able to seal it. Good luck. These things are sent to try us !
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Old 15 Apr 2007
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I don't know about XTs but I assume that the sump is aluminium .
To get any kind of a good weld it will have to be super clean .
Welding the hole closed and then retapping would be a viable option IF you have good workshop facilities to hand . Welding a patch over the area might be a good idea if oil contamination is a problem .[ you can clean the outside much easier ] Then you could leave the patch in place and retap at leisure .

Cleaning the area with a good solvent and then an epoxy repair might be a good short term solution .But even don't think about getting the bolt out again until you get home .
I've done temporary repairs by mixing aluminium filings with two part epoxy and filling holes that way .

I wouldn't worry too much about draining the sump even if you are a long way from home , oil changes at the oil tank will be fine .
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Old 15 Apr 2007
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Two part metal epoxy

Clean clean clean then two part epoxy and do it in several layers. May seep slightly but I have had them hold for years. One thing that is available in the states is a 1/2 size larger metric drain plug that will self tap into a stripped hole.
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Old 16 Apr 2007
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I see this thread is a bit more elaborate than the related one on the sub saharan branch.

First tell me which idiot did the sump plug repair in CT. I will go and moer him with some heavy tools.

Secondly if this ever happens again go to someone who knows how to repair a sump plug thread professionally. (With a Time-sert)

And now take your pratley steel or whatever epoxi rubbish you have.
Throw your bike onto the side that allows easiest access to the sump hole.
Might be a good idea to take the tank off as well as the battery to avoid fluid spills.
Clean your desaster area as good as you can with tissues & petrol. Hole and surrounds
Glue your plug into the hole.
Have a couple of s to allow epoxi to set before topping up oil and trying.
Change oil more often.
Not sure about the best long term solution without seeing the engine myself.
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Old 16 Apr 2007
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Can you not try find an engineers merchants who should be able to supply a tapered steel threaded plug. Often used in builders or heavy plant machinery as sump or drain plugs. The steel should be able to rethread itself into the softer alloy. It's worth a try, even if you go for one of the other suggested repairs and decide to carry this as a backup.
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Old 17 Apr 2007
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Thanks for all the response....
I was supposed to go and collect a guy today who was going to fit a helicoil for me, but it seems from what people are saying that is a bad idea? So Ill try the and epoxy technique and hope for the best...
Thanks again
Jim
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Old 17 Apr 2007
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You have to be very careful with a tapered plug especially if you don't cut the thread but try to use the plug as cutting tool. Cast Aluminium is quite hard and might crack if you force the plug in without having cut a proper thread as suggested by Harleyrider.
Steel tapered plugs are also problematic in aluminium alloy as they tend to come loose and fall out caused by different thermal expansion.
A cylindrical thread and copper or aluminium washer are to prefer.
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Old 17 Apr 2007
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Jeeez..

You said your last helicoil was a disaster so why are you doing it again ???? Helicoils are crap, especially in alloy.

Expoxy is a bodge and is more than likely going to fail with constant oil contamination and heat (be lucky a blob doesnt fall off and get stuck in an oil jet)

The only real solution is to tap out a larger thread and install an oversize bolt.

It can be any bolt as long as its the correct thread and you use a copper washer.
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Old 17 Apr 2007
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Talking

Ok, so heres what ive done:

I have this thread repair 2 part stuff that promises to rebuild stripped threads to the point that they can be torqued again...ja right. But, what ive done is reinserted the insert (because its longer than the original sump plug and so has more thread making contact). I found to my delight that that there is still a little good thread in the casing so ive covered the insert with my superman thread fix (as though it were Loctite) and screwedthe sucker in as tight as i dare. Then I took Pattex steel repair epoxy and covered the whole mess up real good. If we all think positive thoughts it will hold forever.

Le Cap and everyone else, thanks a million. Grant you and your website rock!

Jim

PS Le Cap, you proably know the "mechanic" who did my engine... I heard he came off his bike just afterwards and he dont look so pretty no more.
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Old 17 Apr 2007
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Its no surprise he came off his bike if he does his own repairs !!


I think you may really regret using that epoxy. How are you going to change the oil ??

The top drain bolt only empties whats in the frame.
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  #14  
Old 18 Apr 2007
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Hey Jim

Keep it rockin man
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Old 18 Apr 2007
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Change the oil? Well, you see i have a cunning plan; Ill drain the oil tank, that giives around 1L, then i replace drain bolt, run her for a minute and drain whats in the tank then, which gives another half litre or so. So i can drain about 1.8 litres (Ive tried it already and it works) and replace that every 2000km and I figure its better than nothing. So you going to say now Im mad to run the engine a second time after draining a litre, but running 1 minute minus 1L surely wont do any damage.?
You see I couldnt re tap that thread because the genius who stripped the thread the second time already re tapped to 16mm which doesnt leave me with much meat to tap again...
Just tell me it will be ok.
JIm

5 Eyes, where the hell are you man, your s getting warm, er well actually I drank it already, but theres another one i think.
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