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What came out of my transmisison..?


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Well some gear oil of course, which is good. But it had a rather attractive aluminum-colored metallic sheen to it, which is bad (I think?) Not just a little, but what appeared to be a lot of dissolved metal. Nothing visible to the naked eye, just looked like the pigment in metallic paint. Nothing worrisome on the magnetic drain plug, though, just the usual amount of fuzz and no chunks of any kind, nor was any material of visible size detectable in the drained fluid. Bike is a '96 RT with 65k miles.


Should I be worrying about this?

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I would worry if it wasn't there on your last fluid change. You are probably in the early stages of a bearing failure. Has your transmission been upgraded to a M97? I would think that the input shaft support bearings are the culprit here although the early transmissions, if I remember right, also had trouble with output shaft bearings.

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Hmmm. From what I've been reading lately it seems that every BMW motorcycle is in the early stages of a bearing failure.


Hilarity aside... I'm trying to remember how much material I've seen in past changes. I believe that there's always been some, but never as much as on this change. Not a shattering event as I've got a near-new M97 transmission sitting in the back of the garage (current unit is the original M94) waiting to go in but I had hoped to do that at the next spline lube/clutch change/whatever rather than make a special event of it. I guess I'll halve the oil change interval and keep an eye on things. I kind of want to have the current tranny rebuilt when it eventually comes out (always good to have a spare oilhead transmission smirk.gif) so I don't want to let it go so far as to trash it.


Thanks for the comment, hope you're wrong but of course you're probably right.

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