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Thread: 1997 R850R Start-up Cam Chain Noise w/Upgraded Tensioner

  1. #16
    #13338 PGlaves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by senseamidmadness View Post


    The Castrol I've already purchased exceeds these standards by meeting API SN, and that's good enough for me.
    And therein lies the rub. Just because SJ or SN oil is a later rating does not mean it meets all of the criteria for earlier oils, even if the API pretends it does.

    Quoted here is the BMW position stated in a Service Bulletin when API claimed that SJ oil was as good as SH oil:

    Bulletin Date: 11/25/98 Main Group: 11 For USA Only
    Bulletin #2855 Engine

    BMW Motorcycles
    Service Bulletin

    Service Bulletin: SJ Engine Oil - Not Approved

    Specification:

    BMW provides specific recommendations for fuel and lubricants in the
    Service and Technical Booklet for each model motorcycle, or in the
    Riders Manual on older model motorcycles. These recommendations are based
    on specific knowledge of the engine requirements and thorough endurance
    testing.

    Recommendation:

    The current recommendation is as follows:

    Brand-name HD oil, API classification SF, SG or SH; CD or CE suffixes are
    permissible; alternatively, brand-name HD oil, CCMC classification G4 or
    G5; suffix PD2 is permissible.

    Not Approved:

    The API specification SJ is not approved for use in any BMW motorcycle.
    This latest API classification does not guaranty the required levels of
    wear protective additives such as Calcium, Magnesium, Zinc, etc. as with
    most prior API specifications.

    Customer Interaction:

    We suggest that you council with your customers regarding the oils being
    used in their motorcycle. Most oils found in commercial discount and
    automotive supply stores are now API SJ classification, which means that
    they should not be used.

    Very truly yours,

    [signed] [signed]
    Frank Stevens Pat Raymond
    After Sales Manager Service Organization
    Motorcycle- Group
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
    http://web.bigbend.net/~glaves/

  2. #17
    Neglected Bike Adopter
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    If what you're implying by that bulletin is completely accurate, then Spectro 4 and Spectro Golden 4 oils (which are now API SL certified per Spectro's website) aren't safe for use in Oilheads...and isn't that the OEM oil that BMW sold for our bikes in their own rebranded bottles?

    API independently lab tests all their newer oils to meet or exceed the exact same anti-wear requirements as the old ones. SN's requirements even explicitly feature a flat tappet wear test to disprove the myth of the superiority of ZDDP. Unless they're straight-up lying about their lab results, that is good enough for me and my bike.
    Owner of the saddest 1997 R850R you ever did see.

  3. #18
    Left Coast Rider
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    Quote Originally Posted by senseamidmadness View Post
    That is good enough for me and my bike.
    Considering Mr. Glaves' extensive first hand experience, and his reputation in the BMW world, his advice should be "good enough" for you and your bike.

    I must comment that, for someone who has come here seeking advice on how to fix an issue, you seem argumentative when given that advice.

  4. #19
    Neglected Bike Adopter
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    Quote Originally Posted by BC1100S View Post
    I must comment that, for someone who has come here seeking advice on how to fix an issue, you seem argumentative when given that advice.
    This is because I didn't ask for oil recommendations and did NOT want to start an oil thread. That choice has already been made and I'm switching to the correct viscosity. I just wanted to know what was causing my cam chain rattle.
    Owner of the saddest 1997 R850R you ever did see.

  5. #20
    #13338 PGlaves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by senseamidmadness View Post
    If what you're implying by that bulletin is completely accurate, then Spectro 4 and Spectro Golden 4 oils (which are now API SL certified per Spectro's website) aren't safe for use in Oilheads...and isn't that the OEM oil that BMW sold for our bikes in their own rebranded bottles?
    I didn't write that bulletin. I am simply providing on this forum what BMW says about oil for your bike.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
    http://web.bigbend.net/~glaves/

  6. #21
    #13338 PGlaves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by senseamidmadness View Post
    This is because I didn't ask for oil recommendations and did NOT want to start an oil thread. That choice has already been made and I'm switching to the correct viscosity. I just wanted to know what was causing my cam chain rattle.
    The most likely cause of your chain rattle is the use of an out-of-spec oil, which means that a discussion of oil specifications is unavoidable.

    That said, it is your bike and you can do with it what you wish, whether that meets BMW specifications or not. Your bike; your choice; your risk.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
    http://web.bigbend.net/~glaves/

  7. #22
    Fortis Fortuna Adiuvat Omega Man's Avatar
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    In the old days of "side of the road" car dealers, didn't they quite things with really thick oil or sawdust?
    OM
    "You can do good or you can do well. Sooner or later they make you choose." MI5
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  8. #23
    #13338 PGlaves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Omega Man View Post
    In the old days of "side of the road" car dealers, didn't they quite things with really thick oil or sawdust?
    OM
    There have been documented examples of sawdust, rice, and corn starch found in automotive final drives.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
    http://web.bigbend.net/~glaves/

  9. #24
    Left Coast Rider
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    Quote Originally Posted by Omega Man View Post
    In the old days of "side of the road" car dealers, didn't they quiet things with....sawdust?
    OM
    What kind of person wood do that?

  10. #25
    Registered User dieselyoda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PGlaves View Post
    There have been documented examples of sawdust, rice, and corn starch found in automotive final drives.
    Bananas work the best. T'was a thing back in the day to keep a diff together enough to make it someone else's issue.
    1997 R1100RT, 1981 KZ 440 LTD, R80RT, R90/6 sidecar, K1100RS,1983 K100RS (Cafe now)

    “The major civilizing force in the world is not religion, it is sex.”

  11. #26
    Pepperfool GSAddict's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Omega Man View Post
    In the old days of "side of the road" car dealers, didn't they quite things with really thick oil or sawdust?
    OM
    Belmont Motors on Kingsway in Vancouver was famous for sawdust in transmissions up here in British Columbia in the '70s.
    '
    Ufda happens..........

    Need your R11xx Hall sensor rewired? PM me.

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