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Old 9th October 2009, 11:31   #16
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Originally Posted by ron_9191 View Post
@ Spitfire, my bike burning rich was just a guess. Coz i was thinking may be a lot of black smoke may mean a lot of unburnt fuel, again may be :-)
Oh ok. I thought you had set to be rich.

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@ Spitfire, how do you feel the lack of compression? how do you check for it?
Do a compression test at your RE Service Center. Its good to check anyways. Loss of pickup - drastically, is a sign of lower compression.

But yeah try all the above as requested by the gurus.
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Old 9th October 2009, 11:33   #17
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Hey Thanks a million Spitfire. I think you are probably right too. I have to give it out for a checkup.
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Old 9th October 2009, 11:48   #18
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Originally Posted by JayPrashanth View Post
Sudharma,

Can't it be a lean mixture?

Cheers,

Jay
My be. These Bikes may be designed to run on a lean mixture. I have checked 4 bikes ( 2 Honda CBR 600 RRs, 1 Yamaha R1, Triumph Speed Tripple 1050) all silencers were in the same condition no soot or any deposits. May be some members here who have Super Bikes would kindly clarify. One thing I have noticed though. These bikes run VERY HOT.
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Old 9th October 2009, 11:55   #19
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Ron,

Stand on the kick lever. If it moves in steps, or very slowly: good compression. If it moves down rapidly without any opposition: low compression.

See, if your guides are shot marginally, there might be some smoking during start up which will disappear after a few minutes. So, there might be very less oil being burnt. This will be a minute change on the dipstick which most often would go unnoticed. If the culprit is exhaust valve guide/stem seal, the oil won't reflect on the plug.

Your plug doesn't seem to indicate a rich mixture at "idle".

Cheers,

Jay
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Old 9th October 2009, 12:11   #20
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Arrow Rich Fuel mixture

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Originally Posted by ron_9191 View Post
Hi everyone! thanks a lot for all your insights.

I followed everyone's instructions. to start off the bent pipe has no color difference at all. In fact all these years I have never had issues with the bent pipe turning bluish or golden color.

Which makes me think that the valve guides are kaput. but if they are then oil should start burning. Am I right? and the more it burns the oil level in the engine should go down. But this has been very consistent. coz I have a good habit of all my bad habits to check the engine oil level just for the heck of it every morning. :-)

This isolated my issue to the air fuel mixture.

@ Sudharma - I guess you are right, how do I get it down to an optimum mixture??

@ Sankar - I checked the plugs. They are dry and the color is greyish brown. What does that mean?

@ Spitfire, my bike burning rich was just a guess. Coz i was thinking may be a lot of black smoke may mean a lot of unburnt fuel, again may be :-)

@ Spitfire, how do you feel the lack of compression? how do you check for it?

Once again, thanks eveyone for your very very valuable inputs. I really appreciate it! :-)
I check the flame in the cylinder with a colortune plug and adapter. You can see the actual flame in the cylinder and adjust the mixture to get the blueish flame. The colortune comes with a chart of the flame colours for different mixtures.

Also different carburettors will have different procedures for adjusting the fuel mixture.

All Vehicles with FI and EMC will have perfect combustion.

Please see the attached Spark Plug color chart which isself explanetory.

Compression can be tested with a compression tester. after a short run, remove the Spark Plug, connect the Comp. Tester and trun the engine over using the kick Starter or theself starter. The tester will read the compression pressure
Attached Files
File Type: doc spark plug colour chart.doc (140.5 KB, 514 views)
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Old 9th October 2009, 12:14   #21
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Originally Posted by Spitfire View Post
Loss of compression. Check rings.

To all. Reading the above comments, isn't it possible to get black smoke if oil is entering the combustion chamber?
Pathetic throttle response can be due to various reasons and can be also due to loss of compression. Loss of compression would produce hard starting and a possible burning of oil.

Black smoke is due to excessive richness, which can also induce, pathetic throttle response. If oil is burning it will give out blueish white smoke.

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Originally Posted by ron_9191 View Post
Hi everyone! thanks a lot for all your insights.

I followed everyone's instructions. to start off the bent pipe has no color difference at all. In fact all these years I have never had issues with the bent pipe turning bluish or golden color.

>> Exhaust header colour change occuring on bikes due to lean condition when the bike overheats which is mostly coz it's tuned lean. It also happens with a retarded igntion and if you ride fast and set your engine for going faster. But on new bullets fresh from the factory the colour change is due to the pollution controlling secondary pulse air injection system which injects fresh air into the exhaust port and the unburnt hydrocarbons burn outside of the combustion chamber and into the exhaust header.

Which makes me think that the valve guides are kaput. but if they are then oil should start burning. Am I right? and the more it burns the oil level in the engine should go down. But this has been very consistent. coz I have a good habit of all my bad habits to check the engine oil level just for the heck of it every morning. :-)

>> If it's oil you'll see bluish white smoke. And plug will show wetness and/or excessive carbon fouling.

This isolated my issue to the air fuel mixture.

@ Sudharma - I guess you are right, how do I get it down to an optimum mixture??

@ Sankar - I checked the plugs. They are dry and the color is greyish brown. What does that mean?

>> Can you post a photo? If the colour is greyish brown it can't be rich!

@ Spitfire, my bike burning rich was just a guess. Coz i was thinking may be a lot of black smoke may mean a lot of unburnt fuel, again may be :-)

>> Check if the choke is ON. In some cases i've seen owners skipping to cut off the choke and see all the above symptoms all of a sudden on a bike which was running fine!

@ Spitfire, how do you feel the lack of compression? how do you check for it?

Once again, thanks eveyone for your very very valuable inputs. I really appreciate it! :-)
Just open the side box and see how the airfilter is. Also see if the airfilter and airbox is fouled with oil from the crankcase ventilation pipe that terminates inside the sidebox.

We need more info to help you diagnose the prob online.

1) How difficult or easy is it to start?
2) Do you see black smoke as soon as it started or at a particular throttle opening?
3) Can you ride the bike with minumum throttle?
4) Does the bike 8stroke? Means go phutphutphutphutphutphut as you increase throttle?
5) Has the bike been stood for a while or are you sing it regularly?
6) Have you made any changes to the bike?

Last edited by Sankar : 9th October 2009 at 12:16.
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Old 9th October 2009, 12:27   #22
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@ Sankar - I am in the office, and after I read your post I went to the parking lot and checked the air filter. I was shocked to see that the air filter is soaking wet with oil. But from where??? how could oil end up on the air filter???

1) How difficult or easy is it to start? Easy to start
2) Do you see black smoke as soon as it started or at a particular throttle opening? at around 4000RPM or more
3) Can you ride the bike with minumum throttle? not all the time
4) Does the bike 8stroke? Means go phutphutphutphutphutphut as you increase throttle? not at all
5) Has the bike been stood for a while or are you sing it regularly? i run it everyday for atleast 25 KM
6) Have you made any changes to the bike? yes, changed the muffler to a 500's one.
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Old 9th October 2009, 12:29   #23
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@ Sudharma - Thanks a lot for that color chart. That was very helpful and kind of you to share it with the members.
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Old 9th October 2009, 12:31   #24
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@ JayPrashanth. I think the compression is OK. coz I dont feel any difference and as you rightly said it moves down in steps, slowly.
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Old 9th October 2009, 12:32   #25
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Firstly, change the air filter(I am assuming you have the paper one) and check. Oil gets in through the overflow pipe for the breather.

Black smoke when revved hard can also be due to soot accumulated in the silencer. Just remove the silencer end can and see if it smokes.
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Old 9th October 2009, 12:43   #26
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Originally Posted by ron_9191 View Post
@ Sankar - I am in the office, and after I read your post I went to the parking lot and checked the air filter. I was shocked to see that the air filter is soaking wet with oil. But from where??? how could oil end up on the air filter???

1) How difficult or easy is it to start? Easy to start
2) Do you see black smoke as soon as it started or at a particular throttle opening? at around 4000RPM or more
3) Can you ride the bike with minumum throttle? not all the time
4) Does the bike 8stroke? Means go phutphutphutphutphutphut as you increase throttle? not at all
5) Has the bike been stood for a while or are you sing it regularly? i run it everyday for atleast 25 KM
6) Have you made any changes to the bike? yes, changed the muffler to a 500's one.
Bingo! That is the problem.
The oil you saw in the airfilter box is from the crankcase. I'll explain.

Newer bikes have crankcase ventilation tube routed from the crankcase to an oil catch can. From the top of this can exits a tube that goes into the airfilter box. The idea is to recirculate the fumes from the crankcase back into the engine to to keep pollution under check.

The crankcase ventilation system carry oil mist through the tubes and into the oil catch can where the oil mist is captured and settled down. If this can is not cleaned oil build up inside it and eventually it will flow out through the tube on the top and into the airbox where it will foul up the filter. And your engine gets no air and it runs rich and you see black smoke. A bit of this oil will be also burnt by the engine but not enough to produce bluish white smoke.

What you do now is drain the catch can, clean the airfilter box and that square box, replace the filter, clean the pipes connecting the airbox and the airfilter, clean the plug and your bike will be back to normal.

Some bikes have a tube that goes from the catch can to the timing case in this case the oil is recirculated. But it's bad for the engine. Old Bullets had the crankcase ventialation tubes exiting from the side crankcase below the cylinder and the tube falls on top of the chain. Oil mist will then lubricate the chain.
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Old 9th October 2009, 12:49   #27
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@ Sankar -- that is really a very convincing solution. Now I have a few questions on your work around. Where is the oil catch can? Is that a small black can that you see near the left side utility box? Now if at all I drain that and clean that, do I have to fill it up with new oil inside that when I fix it back or does it get filled up automatically. My apologies if I am sounding dumb ;-)
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Old 9th October 2009, 13:02   #28
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@ Sankar -- that is really a very convincing solution. Now I have a few questions on your work around. Where is the oil catch can? Is that a small black can that you see near the left side utility box? Now if at all I drain that and clean that, do I have to fill it up with new oil inside that when I fix it back or does it get filled up automatically. My apologies if I am sounding dumb ;-)
Yes its that black can you see near the left side box. You just clean it and you shouldn't fill it up!! During normal maintenance make it a point to see if the air filter box has any traces of oil dripping into it, if yes clean the can. If you want to you can do it away with that Oil catch can thingy completely.
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Old 9th October 2009, 13:51   #29
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Originally Posted by JayPrashanth View Post
GreaseMonk,

Shot piston rings.

Cheers,

Jay
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sankar View Post
Bike is drinking oil. Remove the plug and check it for wetness and carbon build up.

If it's white smoke during startup and on partial throttle and if the smoke almost disappears on open throttle spirited riding then your valve guides are shot. This will not happen if your Electra comes with stem seals. i forgot the model year when RE added stem seals to their CI engines.

If the bike is smoking blue al throughout its due to piston rings. You may need a bore ob or if you're lucky a change of rings would see you rolling.
Thanks for the input guys. The thing is, it was only smoking for a couple of minutes after the spirited run. After that, it seemed to have come back to normal (although it sounds a bit rougher). No smoke during start up or full throttle now.

Is it possible that oil passes the piston rings only after extended ripping due to thermal distortion? Which then returns to normal after a couple of minutes?

1) How difficult or easy is it to start? Definitely more difficult than when I first got the bike.
2) Do you see black smoke as soon as it started or at a particular throttle opening? No
3) Can you ride the bike with minumum throttle? Yes.
4) Does the bike 8stroke? Means go phutphutphutphutphutphut as you increase throttle? Only when I am in the wrong gear and lugging it while trying to go open throttle.
5) Has the bike been stood for a while or are you sing it regularly? Regular use.
6) Have you made any changes to the bike? No mechanical mods since I got it. It had a short bottle silencer then.

Compression isnt as good as I would like from the standing-on-the-kicker test. Although I am a little heavy :P.
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Old 9th October 2009, 14:47   #30
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@GreaseMonk - If it is black smoke, it is never oil burning, so get that out of your head. You don't have to fear a conked out engine.

Just buy a new air filter and you will be good. Until the catch can overflows again. I would recommend getting rid of the catch can and using an old style vent tube, as Sankar said, to lubricate ur chain.

It is only because of an emission regulation(cannot vent breather directly to atmosphere), that the catch can is part of a closed loop. It adds nothing to your bike.
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