How often should I change my oil?


36 replies to this topic
  • WheelsUp

Posted March 04, 2006 - 06:48 PM

#21

I have always been a huge fan of yamalube 4R for my bike, but no one ever says they use it. Is it good for the motor and the gears?

It's not a bad oil, but it's nothing special. Yamaha sources it from someone else.. no clue who.

Am I spending money on yamaha's name?


Not really, since 4 and 4R are no more expensive than other dino and dino/synth blends. You're paying for the part of the sign on the store that says "Cycle" or "Motorsports" :thumbsup:

Also I am running one of those metal oil filters, but not the reusable kind. Can I take that one out and reuse it after trying to clean it? Or is that just not a good idea?

The brass Yamaha filter was replaced with a cellulose (paper) element in '03. The brass filter is pretty fragile... it CAN be cleaned and re-used, but I wouldn't, as it is way easy to damage it during cleaning without knowing it.
It does flow better than the paper filter.
For frequrent change intervals, I think it's fine if it's not re-used.

Oh yah, and I really think that the magnetic drain plug works awsome. Catches a lot of black guey crap that would otherwise be floating around in the case some were.

Ya... some people question the value of it, as oil passes through a screen and the filter before going to the engine, so it's probably only extending the life of your filter, but I like it and recommend them. If you dab a paper towel against the "goo" you'll see that the oil will be absorbed leaving you with metal filings. It does look like sludge but it isn't.

  • kzoo

Posted March 04, 2006 - 09:25 PM

#22

Why don't you send your oil out and get it checked? That will give you a good idea if your taxing the oil or not... It's will cost you $20.00 and postage.

http://www.blackstone-labs.com/

Visit www.bobistheoilguy.com to do some research on oil, specifically the motorcycle UOA forum -
http://theoildrop.se...?ubb=forum;f=52

Or you can visit SUnruh's UOA's at
http://unruhly.net/sunruh/uoa.d/

  • Dwood11

Posted March 04, 2006 - 10:10 PM

#23

Anyone sent in some good old Yamalube 4R to see what it comes up? I am kinda courious myself now. I wonder how long I should let it go before I send a sample in. Maybe a couple samples. Let one go a ride, and then another with just a bit more miles. Now you have peaked me interest.

  • Eliems

Posted March 04, 2006 - 11:59 PM

#24

I am doing mainly pavement these days around town blasting down to the store etc and faithfully doing oil changes every 1,000kms or 600 miles. Reading this thread is making me consider cutting the intervals by half.

The oil doesn't seem overly dirty at 1000kms and the manual suggests replacing the oil after 1,000 kms. but on the other hand 1.4 litres is not a lot of oil.

Hmmm

  • kzoo

Posted March 05, 2006 - 06:20 AM

#25

Anyone sent in some good old Yamalube 4R to see what it comes up? I am kinda courious myself now. I wonder how long I should let it go before I send a sample in. Maybe a couple samples. Let one go a ride, and then another with just a bit more miles. Now you have peaked me interest.


Here's the link to request test kits.
http://www.blackston...e_test_kit.html

  • knottyv8

Posted August 02, 2006 - 09:48 PM

#26

Good Thread,i Have A 99 Wr400,and Been Told To Change The Oil, Every 4hrs,does This Sound Right?or A Bit On The Safe Side?

  • WheelsUp

Posted August 02, 2006 - 09:53 PM

#27

Good Thread,i Have A 99 Wr400,and Been Told To Change The Oil, Every 4hrs,does This Sound Right?or A Bit On The Safe Side?

Sounds a bit WAY on the safe side unless you are very hard on your engine and clutch (fullbore competition).

The owners manual says every 600 miles.
Most of us run about every 200 or so OR every track day.
200 offroad miles could be anywhere from 5 to 10 hours.

  • 89TRX350RX

Posted August 03, 2006 - 04:46 AM

#28

I am doing mainly pavement these days around town blasting down to the store etc and faithfully doing oil changes every 1,000kms or 600 miles. Reading this thread is making me consider cutting the intervals by half.

The oil doesn't seem overly dirty at 1000kms and the manual suggests replacing the oil after 1,000 kms. but on the other hand 1.4 litres is not a lot of oil.

Hmmm


The technician at the local Yammie Dealership told me "change it every 2000 kms".... I do mostly (99%) road around town, to work and back etc... and change it every 500 kms... For the $10-12, it's cheap insurance....

Just my $0.02!!! :thumbsup:

Visit the ThumperTalk Store for the lowest prices on motorcycle / ATV parts and accessories - Guaranteed
  • 06WR450FSM

Posted August 03, 2006 - 10:29 AM

#29

Its time for me to do a used oil analysis (I know - the results only apply to my bike and riding conditions). Unless dirt is bypassing the air filter, changing the oil after a couple of rides seems rediculous.

Yes, the oil capacity is small, so that decreases the length of the oil change interval (OCI). But the bike is water-cooled and the oil passes through the frame for some cooling as well, so it never gets as hot as an air-cooled bike like an XR400.

The tranny shears down the oil - but most street sport bikes have the same situation except four times as many cylinders and valves plus run at much higher rpms. Are they changing the oil every few hours? I don't think so and those motors often last 100,000 miles.

The 600 miles is on the competition service schedule. A lot of us don't run our bikes under conditions anywhere as severe. The strangely named service shedule preceeding the competition schedule shows OCIs transitioning to 1200 miles, then 1800 miles. Too long for my taste, but the engineers who designed our bikes know nothing about lubrication?

Changing the oil more frequently than necessary can't hurt anything, but some people here act like it is required. Other than contaminated oil, it doesn't make sense.

Back it with some facts, please!

  • WheelsUp

Posted August 03, 2006 - 04:38 PM

#30

Here's some of the results from the guys in another forum.
Keep in mind that these are from a Kawi 1600 V-Twin, which contains nearly 4 quarts (wet-sump, same clutch/engine/trans combo as our Yammy's), has a rev limiter set to about 6200 (and no, sportbikes don't rev higher than our YZ/WR's... they also redline at 12-14k).

Kawasaki says to change the oil every 7500 miles. These samples were pulled at between 1500 and 2k, and the only oil that remained in grade for the bike was the "Redcap" 15w50.
The V-Twin sheared down to a 30wt. The Vulcan "wants" 10w40 if temps are going to be staying below 100/110. Keep in mind that these are among the most popular non-MC specific oils used.

http://personal.link...il/m1-vtwin.pdf
http://personal.link...il/m1-15w50.jpg
http://personal.link...il/m1-15w50.pdf (typo in the analysis ID's this as 5w50)
http://personal.link...otella-5w40.jpg
http://personal.link...ella-5w40-1.jpg
http://personal.link...ella-5w40-2.jpg
http://personal.link...tella-15w40.pdf

I currently have V-Twin in mine and am approaching 1500 on the change. I'm waiting for a sample kit from Blackstone, but plan to send in a sample at 2k.
My next sample will be Amsoil, probably 15w40 synth (same thing I use in my truck), and then maybe Amsoil MCF... but based on what I'm seeing, I have a feeling I'm going to end up being a Redcap (Goldcap) user for both bikes.

  • 06WR450FSM

Posted August 04, 2006 - 10:59 AM

#31

Thanks for the detail WheelsUp! That's the kind of post I'm hoping to get.

It is expected that the oil will shear down a grade (the M1 V-Twin oil looks to have dropped to the bottom of a 40wt at SUS 69). Yamaha knows this. For a water-cooled engine, 30wt is fine. Is your Kawi air-cooled? If so, the oil probably shears down faster... Either way, the UOAs @ ~2k OCIs with sheared down oil don't show high wear rates, not even the M1 15W-50 "Redcap" one for John Price that had almost 5300 miles on the oil.

My redline is 11k, not 12-14k, with max hp at 8500. An R6 revs to 17,500 rpm with max hp at 14,500. So yes, sport bikes run higher rpms.

The point is - the oil shears down but the water-cooled engines last very long anyway. My friend is an MRA multi-class racer that uses a 1992 CBR600 in modern vintage with 62,000 original miles that still makes >100 hp on the dyno, yet is very lax about oil changes. My 1983 750 Interceptor had a horrible past before I got it, yet needs no oil added between annual 2500 mile oil changes and still makes excellent power.

I know our bikes need more frequent changes due to smaller capacity (offset in part by a smaller total displacement single cylinder with fewer valves). Then again, our 1.2 qt capacity is not lower relative to a 1600 cc motor with 4 qts. Its just that many noobies (like me) are being told that the engine MUST have the oil changed about every 5 hours or 200 miles even for recreational use for the engine to last, which unless a lot of dirt bypassed the filter, just seems unnecessary and may be mis-information unless someone can verify it.

We should do what's right based on facts, not fear.

More good posts please...

  • WheelsUp

Posted August 04, 2006 - 02:22 PM

#32

Is your Kawi air-cooled? If so, the oil probably shears down faster...

No, the Vulcan V-Twins (used in the above samples) are liquid cooled. That's one of the primary reasons I bought the 1600 Classic over a RoadStar... I spend a bit of time in heavy traffic and am not crazy about lane splitting to keep temps down.

  • 06WR450FSM

Posted August 04, 2006 - 04:23 PM

#33

No, the Vulcan V-Twins (used in the above samples) are liquid cooled. That's one of the primary reasons I bought the 1600 Classic over a RoadStar... I spend a bit of time in heavy traffic and am not crazy about lane splitting to keep temps down.


Thanks for clarifying. I would think that the motor will last much longer being liquid-cooled.

I have changed my oil 5 times in the first 1700 miles - 90% of which were on street/highway. I haven't previously done a used oil analysis (UOA) since the motor is so new and the normal initial wear metals may be high enough to not know if that is the source or poor lubrication, plus I am changing the oil frequently anyway. I am thinking of doing one this time at about 600 street miles.

I am just trying to establish if an oil change interval (OCI)of 600 miles recreational dirt / 1000 street miles is reasonable once the motor has fully broken in (using a 15W/40 Delvac 1300 - 5W/40 Mobil1 TDT blend). My experience from reading UOA (somewhat limited) shows that even though people think engines break-in quickly, it can be thousands of miles for the initial wear metal levels to flatten out.

  • WheelsUp

Posted August 04, 2006 - 04:39 PM

#34

even though people think engines break-in quickly, it can be thousands of miles for the initial wear metal levels to flatten out.

Absolutely.
The rings seat and the initial break in can happen very quickly, but it does indeed take a long time (as much as 10k on a street bike) for the UOA's to normalize.

That's what I like about Blackstone... they've seen everything, and even if you send in a sample from the bike's first oil change, they can tell if something is abnormal.

My UOA on this V-Twin at 2500 is going to light up the wear metals like a Christmas tree, but the main thing we're looking for at this point is how well the vis holds up. From this we can assume that, over the long run, the oil that remains in grade will do a better job of protecting the engine, however, further UOAs will be done down the road to verify.

You'll notice that a lot of people (including Wrooster's chart published long ago and stolen here) do not include the TBN analysis. It's an extra $10 for this, and it's been shown that the additive packages hold up in bikes well in excess of the viscosity remaining in an acceptable grade... TBN is good to pay for if you're running a bypass filter and attempting to go 25-50k on a change on an auto/truck.

  • 06WR450FSM

Posted August 04, 2006 - 09:35 PM

#35

Good point about the extra TBN cost - something good for an application with only an annual oil change...

I have used Butler labs for my cars/trucks. Not sure about them with the bike.

  • knottyv8

Posted August 05, 2006 - 01:12 PM

#36

thanks for that,don't think it would get a hard time like guys that race,but the only track we have near by,is sand in the forrest by one of our west coast beaches,so prob does get the high revs a bit,plus wheelies on the beach,ok since adding this morn,i've done a oil change,after 5hrs,it needed it,the oil was very dark and dirty(plus there were a few metal shavings&sand on the filter *gulp*)so it depends on the condions you ride in i think,prob best for me to do it every 4hrs,also on the air box,looks like there is a mesh filter missing?as the inlet has screw holes around it,but can't find a pic in the manual,so can anyone tell me if there is ment to be one there,thanks

  • WheelsUp

Posted August 05, 2006 - 06:15 PM

#37

The riding environment makes a big difference.
Sand is HORRIBLE on not only the chain, which everyone expects, but it gets into the crankcase as well, possibly though the breather, but the fact is it gets everywhere and can really thrash a vehicle/bike if it is not well cared for.

Mud is nearly as bad... so what may be borderline for track or "recreational" sand dunes may be totally overkill for mellow cruising on dirt roads.

Personally, with an oil change with synthetic costing about $10 on the WR (Scott's filter), I'll stick with more frequent intervals. The cost on my cruiser is the same as my wife's car, so I'll go by UOA until I decide what oil and what interval is acceptable.... but until then, better safe than sorry.




 
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