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Thread: Engine damage or not after clutch disaster?

  1. #1
    apriliaforum prov-nov benuk's Avatar
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    Engine damage or not after clutch disaster?

    Hi guys,
    You may remember I posted last year after my clutch destroyed itself, taking part of the crankcase with it.
    (post : http://www.apriliaforum.com/forums/s...y-clutch/page3 )

    At the time, my solution was to buy a crashed falco and put its engine in my bike. Turned out to be a good deal since after selling off all the parts from the crashed bike I ended up making a profit so no complaining
    However, I still have my original engine and want to pick your brains about repairing it.

    The engine was working absolutely fine when the dealer opened it by removing the whole clutch crankcase cover because of the clutch noise. It was the dealer who told me to change the engine because of the bit of crankcase that fell out & the shards of ground aluminium crankcase that were lying in the oil.

    It turned out the broken bit of crankcase only came from the crankcase COVER and not the actual crankcase, which is why i realised the engine could maybe be easily repaired.
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    I've bought
    - new crankcase cover
    - gasket
    - new full clutch / basket assembly
    I'll also need to replace a couple of bolts that had their heads damaged, the water pump gear and check the oil pump.

    I'm not worried about the gearbox anymore since I managed to put the jigsaw of broken parts back together and confirm no chunks of metal could have been lost in there!

    Anyways, the opinion I need from you is:
    The shards of ground metal that were in the oil around the clutch area : could some of these have been sent around the engine and ended up in bearings etc, meaning i should just sell it for parts (since i'm not competent to open it up completely and fix it)? Or does ALL of the oil coming out of the pump go through the filter before being distributed through the engine? If that's the case, then i would be perfectly confident the filter would have caught any tiny bits.
    I've looked at the diagram of the oil pump but can't work out if all the oil goes through the filter first or if some of it is pumped directly into bearings without going through the filter.
    diagram :
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    So, answers please?!!!
    cheers
    Ben
    Last edited by benuk; 04-14-2012 at 02:34 AM.

  2. #2
    apriliaforum expert anzacinexile's Avatar
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    Not sure about your question concerning the pressure pump but I would be more concerned with the scavenge pump picking up the crap because that definitely pickups up oil direct from the sump and shoves it back to the oil tank without any sort of filtration
    Chris
    Probability factor now 1:1, normality has been returned. Anything you canít deal with now is your own problem

  3. #3
    apriliaforum expert velowood's Avatar
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    Just for a quick and easy check, you could pull the magnetic drain plug and see if it's caught anything. And change the filter.

  4. #4
    apriliaforum prov-nov benuk's Avatar
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    When i drained the engine after removal there was nothing in the oil, nothing on the magnetic plug (but remember, I'm talking about aluminium shards so non magnetic), and nothing in the oil that came out of the tank, oh and nothing visible in the filter.
    This is why i think the engine's ok, but i wanted to know if anything could have been sent out elsewhere into the engine?

    What is the scavening pump? is it number 3 or 7 in the diagram? I don't know how the oil pump is linked to the filter but it looks like 7 feeds 3 which feeds the filter.?

  5. #5
    apriliaforum Member HisNibbs's Avatar
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    When the clutch release bearing went on my bike there was all sorts of crap in the clutch case and the oil filter was covered in what looked like grinding paste. I cleaned it up replaced the oil and and filter (twice now) and done another 10,000 miles or so. So maybe its a little noisier than new but it has nearly 60,000 miles on the clock and still pleases.

  6. #6
    apriliaforum prov-nov benuk's Avatar
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    Ok, today I got down to business
    I could see the little bits of ground metal all over the place,
    After examination, i've worked out the oil circuit, so there's two parts from the oil pump:
    - one going out to the oil cooler then back into the top of the tank
    - one going through the filter, then up and out to all the "precious" bits of the engine (bearings etc)
    Then also, the oil coming back into the engine from the bottom of the oil tank comes through a wire mesh filter (I couldn't believe that discovery!) in the bottom of the oil tank. If you undo the huge (28mm?) hex nut, the whole filter unit comes out.

    This means that no dodgy bits can have gone to bearings etc, since protected by the filter. On closer inspection, and contrary to my initial conclusions, the filter was full of a lovely ground aluminium "paste".
    So, I decided I can get away without taking the whole engine apart provided I can rinse out the crankcase / gearbox.
    So I "washed out" the crank case with some 5W oil (2L), I rinsed it through 5 times, pouring it in the right hand side (clutch area), and draining from the gearbox drain bolt. The first two times, big chunks came out, like 2mm x 5mm, and lots of little bits, metal dust etc.
    I continued running clean oil through, filling it up completely before opening the drain bolt so it would gush out and for the last two times there were no solid parts and basically no "dust" either.
    So I've decided it is indeed worth putting it all back together (new clutch) and see how it goes.
    The first time I run it, I'll run cheap oil for 50 km or so, then do another oil change. no doubt there'll be more to come out, but what I wanted to be sure of was that the conrod /crank bearings couldn't have any crap in them and that appears to be the case
    Phew! well, it's fun learning stuff at least.
    Oh, I can't make up my mind if my oil rotor(s) need to be replaced. They've clearly met some chunks of aluminium and have some scoring, but it doesn't look too bad, and I had no oil pressure warnings or anything when i rode my bike home (80 km) after the clutch exploded. How much scoring / pitting is acceptable on the oil rotors?

  7. #7
    apriliaforum expert anzacinexile's Avatar
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    All the manual says is

    Check for wear limit rotor tip and outer face, max 0.25mm for both
    Maximum end float 0.15mm

    ...and not very helpfully, "check for scouring"
    Chris
    Probability factor now 1:1, normality has been returned. Anything you canít deal with now is your own problem

  8. #8
    apriliaforum prov-nov benuk's Avatar
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    haha thanks for the advice
    I'll take some photos. I think i qualify as having "scouring" :p

  9. #9
    apriliaforum prov-nov benuk's Avatar
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    Ok. Been down to the garage to take some photos. Neighbours in shock at seeing me outside in pyjamas at 11pm haha!
    so the "fat" rotor has quite a bit of scouring. Think it needs changing.
    the "little" rotor seems basically ok
    which rotor does the scavenging and which does the high pressure? (since i guess having scouring on the high pressure one would be more worrying than the scavenger)

    couldn't find any pumps on ebay UK or USA or france. tried google translator and got "olpumpe" in german, which brought up 5 results. RESULT!
    (so do i need to buy one???)

    cheers
    Ben
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    Last edited by benuk; 04-22-2012 at 04:20 PM.

  10. #10
    apriliaforum expert kzmille's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by benuk View Post
    ...but what I wanted to be sure of was that the conrod /crank bearings couldn't have any crap in them and that appears to be the case...
    Not trying to rain on your parade but I don't see how you can say this with any certainty. You say the filter was full of ground aluminum paste. If the filter was blocked to any significant degree the contaminated oil goes through the bypass valve (short filter) and and then throughout the engine. What did the pressure pump look like. Were there signs of contaminated oil in that section of the pump? One place you can actually do a visual inspection of some of the plain bearings without too much trouble is the cam bearings. Before you put too much into this I would pull the front valve cover and remove the cam cover and look for signs of damage.

    Large section is scavenge and small section is pressure.

  11. #11
    apriliaforum prov-nov benuk's Avatar
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    oh! what the heck is the bypass valve? I know the pressure regulation valve that's on the clutch side, but are you talking about something else?
    the small rotor (so from what you've said, high pressure rotor) is v clean, no scouring. The big rotor has a lot of scouring.
    When I first looked over the filter I thought there was nothing in it (couldn't see anything). It was on closer inspection, opening the folds, that I saw there was lots of aluminium dust in there, that had become paste, though it was nowhere near blocked.
    What should I look for in the cam bearings? where to look?
    cheers
    Ben

  12. #12
    apriliaforum expert kzmille's Avatar
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    Well if the filter did not look blocked then you are probably okay. The bypass valve is in the filter itself if you use the short filter. If using the long filter there is no bypass valve and you would have seen the oil light if the pressure dropped to dangerous levels.

    If the pressure section is clean with no signs of damage to the rotors or housing I would say you are okay and the bearings are probably okay.

    If you did look at the cam bearings you would look for signs of contaminants and scoring in the cam cover. There are not replaceable inserts for the cams. The cam rides directly in the head and cam cover.

    If you go ahead with plans to run this engine I would remove and flush the oil cooler, oil tank, and all related hoses because those parts will have had contaminated oil in them. You would also want to try and flush the passageway from the scavenge pump housing to the oil pickup screen in the bottom of the cases with solvent and compressed air. If you can't figure out exactly which passage leads to the pickup I have an engine apart and can look it over.

  13. #13
    apriliaforum prov-nov benuk's Avatar
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    oh you have no idea how much i would love to have photos of the inside of the crankcases (so I could see where there could be blockages / where metal bits could have gone / what passages i need to check). I've searched and searched and found nothing better than the manual's vague diagrams

  14. #14
    apriliaforum expert kzmille's Avatar
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    Okay, I'll see what I can do. It will be a couple hours before I can post anything.

  15. #15
    apriliaforum prov-nov benuk's Avatar
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    pff, don't worry. 1AM here so bed for me. No rush! Thanks for your help.
    - I heard there's some kind of protective gauze in the bottom of the gearbox crankcase, is this true? photo?
    - what do you mean by "pickup screen"?
    see u when i wake up!
    nite

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