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Disappearing oil


KingBiscuit

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KingBiscuit

Hi all,

 

I just purchased an 04 R1150RT with around 7K miles on it. I've put almost 1K miles on it and have noticed that after a hard days ride, it's low on oil. I check the oil after I stop, waiting about 20 minutes. Sometimes, the oil level is spot on, dead center of the sight glass. But, twice now, after a hard day of riding in the twisties (200 miles one day, 300 miles the other), the oil was down to the bottom of the sight glass. I know that these engines burn some oil for a while, but this seems excessive...maybe 1/2 quart in 300 miles. Any comments? I'd be really worried except that I keep hearing that after a few thousand miles, it will quit burning oil. Do R riders carry oil with them to add while on a ride? What's the deal?

 

Thanks,

Dan

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1999 R1100RT, I have the same experience more or less. After any 300 mile day, the engine will want a little oil, ususally about half a cup for 300 miles. A few friends and I road a weekend that included about 250 of easy backroads, 250 of hard twisties, and 250 of eighty mile an hour freeway. I was about a cup and a half low after that one. I do not kow if it is normal, but it is consistent for me.

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Are you doing the "dance" before checking you oil?

 

The 1100/1150 RT tend to trap oil in the oil cooler unless the bike is parked on it's sidestand for a while after shutdown. 10-20 minutes then place on centerstand and check.

 

Also, when checking using this method, if the fill level is over halfway up the sight glass, it is likely that oil will be sucked into the air filter box.

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Stan Walker

...maybe 1/2 quart in 300 miles.

 

From top to bottom of the sight glass is 1/2 quart (16 oz), so from the center dot to the bottom will be 1/2 of that (8 oz). Not enough to worry about in 300 miles of riding.

 

And it will get better.

 

On my recent cross country trip I added about 16 ounces of oil around the 4500 mile mark. Oil was still showing in the site glass when I changed it at home after a total of 8200 miles.

 

Of course my RT is broken in.......

 

Stan

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04 R1150RT with around 7K miles on it
This engine isn't even begun to be broken in yet, and it sounds like your starting out at a bit of a disadvantage as it's been sitting unridden a lot. Oil consumption typically drops off on a boxer at about 20K miles.

 

And as mentioned, depending upon how the bike sits and the oil drains down, the level seen in the sight glass can vary a lot. Remember, the bike holds almost a gallon of oil. +/- 8 ounces just isn't going to matter.

 

Look at glass + see oil = ride bike.

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Jerry Johnston

As Ken said it takes a while, my rt did that until it had somewhere between 20-24k miles on it.

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that's fairly low miles for an '04. ride it hard..prolly still not broken in. had the same issues with mine until about 15k miles. switched to syn at that time. change oil/filter at 6k intervals. i may have to add the residual from the 3.75qt fill in between.

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Both my RTs used oil until around 25K when the consumption rate dropped dramatically. Just returned in June from a week trip to N. GA and Asheville(RA Rally) areas. I put 2200 miles( on alot of twisties) and used no oil. When I'm in the twisites I run second and third gear and never below 4000 RPM and the twins love it. The 2002 1150RT has 52K on it and purrs like a kitten. The harder you run them, the better they run. Believe it.

thumbsup.gif

D

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Couchrocket

Dan, be sure to look at the links Killer posted. That, in a nutshell is the story(s).

 

If you're in the mood for some light hearted reading, do a search on "oil" on this DB.

 

My experience is a blend of both concepts described in Wiki. When I want to accurately check and "top off" the bike's oil, I use the side stand - center stand - while hot - dance. When I'm on the road for the day and have been flogging the bike (that's when it will eat oil) and I'm stopped for gas and don't see oil while on the center stand -- I flop it on the side stand and if I can see anything at all, I RIDE! Then at the end of the day I'll do the "careful" check and top off if necessary.

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Charles Elms

Back in the days when my bike was young and used oil, I never added oil unless it showed low on two separate readings. Twice in a row, add oil, otherwise ride. Did this for about the first 20k miles. Thirst for oil then stopped. Now I will ride from Maryland to Colorado and not even check oil. They do get better with age!

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KingBiscuit

Thanks to all who responded. I had read the book on checking the oil and had been putting it directly on the centerstand after riding...wait 20 minutes and check the oil. I'll do the oil check dance and see what it looks like.

 

Thanks again,

Dan

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KingBiscuit

Another mystery solved...I found my oil! I did the "oil check dance" as described by Killer (thanks Killer). Lo and Behold, the missing oil is found! After the ritual, I checked the oil to find it exactly in the middle of the sight glass. I'm glad to find it that way, but, in my opinion, it sucks that you have to go through this to check the oil on the best bikes made.

 

Oh well, I guess it's the price we pay.

 

Thanks again to all those who responded.

 

Dan

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I will second what has been said...You ain't even broke in yet. When I got my '04 RT it had 6000 miles. I noticed it seemed to be using up oil. I started checking using the dance method and realized it wasn't using as much as I thought. Even still the more miles I put the less it uses. I've put over 1000 miles since my change at 12000miles and it has only dropped a smidge. It seems that the more miles the better these engines run. Also be careful about your RPM's I started out babying mine. 4500 and under all the time. These bikes don't like that. They like 4000 and above all the time. since about the 10,500 mark I have kept 4000RPM and above and the bike is running better, getting better gas mileage, and all around performing GREAT!

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ElevenFifty

04-RT - I bought it a year ago with 32K and a full dealer service record. Now have 53K - still uses oil at about the same rate ... 1/2 quart or so every 1500-2000 miles. I top it off once or twice between changes. Not enough to worry about. Bike runs great - gas mileage is outstanding (high 40's ... 50+ on long highway runs)

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