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What do you use?


BOB1200RTC2

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I set the valves and balanced the throttle bodies on my 07RT this weekend. I was lucky in that my neighbor let me use his mercury filled carb sticks. I was able to get a much more precise setting than with my homemade manomometer that I made. The bike runs as smooth as it did before I let the dealer do the 600 mile service. (Big mistake) My question is what do you guys use for tb balance and what is the best manomometer available now that you can't get mercury sticks anymore.

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Evening Bob

 

Personally I use a homemade liquid U tube manometer.

 

Inches of H20 (water) is much more accurate than inches of mercury.

 

With H20 showing 13.5" when Hg shows 1" there is just no comparison in accuracy.

 

If you had issues using a homebuilt U tube manometer then you might need to build another taking more care in assembly & leak sealing.

 

 

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Same as DR. Initially used my mercury balancer from my old 4 cylinder UJM. Worked OK. A year later I was having issues with air bubbles in the mercury columns. Had a bunch of skinny vinyl air line from my mother-in-laws oxygen machine, just big enough to stretch over the vacuum tubes. Stapled it in a U on a four foot scrap of wood, added some water and a few drops of food coloring. It's much more sensitive than mercury and the small diameter tube provides a damping effect so that the water columns are nearly motionless.

 

EDIT: I should make it clear that mom passed before I took the air line...

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I used my home made manometer and it was better than the dealers hack job but not as smooth as it is now. Maybe my tubing is too large or I need offices to dampen the movement. I used atf as my liquid as well. I'm elated over how smooth my bike is now so I will probably hope that my neighbor keeps being so generous.

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I used my home made manometer and it was better than the dealers hack job but not as smooth as it is now. Maybe my tubing is too large or I need offices to dampen the movement. I used atf as my liquid as well. I'm elated over how smooth my bike is now so I will probably hope that my neighbor keeps being so generous.

 

Evening Bob

 

It just looks better using mercury as mercury is heavier than water or ATF so what would be 6 inches difference using water is less than 1/2" on the mercury.

 

If you want a feel good adjustment then use the mercury as it looks close even when it's not. If you want accuracy then use water as 2" of water difference side to side isn't even a blip on the mercury columns.

 

But, the bottom line is, either will work OK as it just doesn't have to be that close to have the engine run smoothly.

 

If you did other things during the service then those probably made more difference on engine smoothness than the TB balance.

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I set the valves also. None were more than .001 off. I will try using water with smaller tubing for my homemade manometer and see how that works next time. One thing for sure,I love the way my bike runs now.

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I have a 4 gauge setup for the UJM's I own. I ALWAYS pair two together and use a pump to verify they read the same before testing. The bike is smooth, and the dealer will NEVER see my bike again. I have an indie shop close by the is MUCH better than any dealer I've been to, so I am lucky. (Ben's in Freedom, CA)

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I use my U-shaped home-made version. I filled it with oil, not water - I used air tool oil. It works well for me and the price was right - probably about $5.00.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Opening the valve during start-up prevents sucking the fluid into a cylinder. Close the valve once running to check balance. Probably safer than my method which just relies on very long tubing.

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Yep, thanks from me too (to both EddyQ and lkraus).. I hadn't seen that before either, and I'm thinking it will be a definite improvement to my setup..

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  • 2 weeks later...
Opening the valve during start-up prevents sucking the fluid into a cylinder. Close the valve once running to check balance. Probably safer than my method which just relies on very long tubing.

 

Bingo. Yes, the top valve de-sensitizes the thing and helps prevent the liquid from getting sucked up too high. I copied the idea and it works.

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Forgive me but I thought 05 and up had motors that sinked the throttle bodies?

 

 

Evening Froggy

 

They do have stepper idle control motors BUT those ONLY sync the TB's at idle. You still need to do an above idle sync using the cable adjusters.

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I may be igorant but seems to me like that's a bandaid fix on the problem with these flat twins, not somehow connecting the two throttle bodies together either mechanically (solid rod-impossible to do), or by fly by wire. Here I thought BMW finally got it right in 05 with the stepper motors...not the case :mad:

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I may be igorant but seems to me like that's a bandaid fix on the problem with these flat twins, not somehow connecting the two throttle bodies together either mechanically (solid rod-impossible to do), or by fly by wire. Here I thought BMW finally got it right in 05 with the stepper motors...not the case :mad:

 

Morning Froggy

 

It's pretty well a non-issue on the 1200 bikes. Once the engine is broken in & the cables seat in there is very little above idle balance creep. Most 1200's I work with hold their basic balance for many many miles--same with valve adjustments.

 

Even IF BMW found a way to go to a solid rod connecting the TB's there could still be a cross side balance discrepancy as the piston rings wear or other engine wear changes the cross side vacuum.

 

 

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Joe Frickin' Friday
I used my home made manometer and it was better than the dealers hack job but not as smooth as it is now. Maybe my tubing is too large or I need offices to dampen the movement. I used atf as my liquid as well. I'm elated over how smooth my bike is now so I will probably hope that my neighbor keeps being so generous.

 

You can damp out fluctuations in liquid height by making the overall length of liquid in your manometer longer, increasing the mass of the fluid that is getting pushed around by the pressure pulses. Note that the extra length doesn't need to be vertical. Take EddyQ's manometer, for example:

 

DSC08140.JPG

 

See that little loop of hose at the bottom? Make that loop arbitrarily long and coil it up on the floor. As long as you've got all the bubbles out of it, the difference in liquid column heights should still accurately reflect the difference in pressure across the manometer. Now you can use water (or tranny oil, which is even less dense and provides good conspicuity via its color), and you'll have rock-steady readings (i.e. short-term pressure pulses won't make the fluid level change) and good measurement sensitivity (large difference in fluid column height for small differences in pressure).

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Don_Eilenberger

Morning Froggy

 

It's pretty well a non-issue on the 1200 bikes. Once the engine is broken in & the cables seat in there is very little above idle balance creep. Most 1200's I work with hold their basic balance for many many miles--same with valve adjustments.

 

True - in 98,700 miles on my first R1200R I made a barely noticeable tweek on throttle balance at around 80,000 miles. I suspect it really wasn't needed.

 

They really did get this part right on the hex/cam head engine.

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