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Thread: Near stall, inconsistent running

  1. #1
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    Near stall, inconsistent running

    On my way home last night, cruising along at a little over the posted limit on the local freeway, all was going well for the first 25 minutes of the ride, then the engine started running pretty rough, bike started slowing.

    The bike didn't stall, but felt as if it was going to. I pulled off on the shoulder, let it idle for a little while, gave it a few twists on the throttle, and after a minute or two, it seemed to settle down.

    Continuing on my way, all was fine for another 8 or 10 miles, then the roughness reappeared. Went a couple more miles on surface roads, then pulled over and shut it down for a couple minutes. When I restarted, it was smoother, but not quite as smooth as I've been accustomed to with this bike. Rode extra easy for the remaining 12 miles home with just noticeable, but not alarming roughness.

    I'm not a mechanic, but my uneducated guess is that I might have some intermittent obstruction in a fuel line or a dirty filter. This is on a 2002 R1150RT with 66K on it. It gets regular maintenance at A&S and had a new filter put in (I think - gotta check that) with the last major service about 4 months ago.

    Any educated guesses from the mechanics out there?

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    Anyone, anyone?

  3. #3
    I'll start guessing to give your post a bump.

    It was well in to the ride, so the bike was warmed up for quite a while, so I am thinking it is not an 02 sensor.

    Possibly bad gas?

    maybe electrical... check your battery connections especially your ground.

  4. #4
    Registered User kgadley01's Avatar
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    sounds like a dirty gas filter. when was it changed last? its supposed to be replaced every 24K according to my manual.
    AKA SNAPGADGET
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  5. #5
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    I usually put Chevron Premium in. Last fill up was Shell Premium the day before and about 130 miles prior to the problem showing itself.

    I'll take a look at the filter this weekend.

    Thanks.

  6. #6
    Rally Rat
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    if this happens again, try opening the gas cap and see if there is a vacuum in there.

    It has been known for a tech can mix up the venting hoses, no one is perfect.

    It can also be the charcoal canister plugged. same result, vacuum in the tank. This can happen easily in the summer if tank is filled and then bike is parked in sun without so riding.

    If this is it be glad it is summer, in winter this has been known to collapse a tank.

    If not a vacuum in tank, then can also have picked up a small rock in the guide pulley for the throttle cables on the throttle bodies or as stated a plugged filter, although this is not common if it is maintained.

    Rod

  7. #7
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    +1 on the fuel filter

    Had the same issue on annother bike, that would be where I would start.
    It's all about riding motorcycles, it always has been, it always will be.

    Marcus

  8. #8
    waehrik
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    I've had two of the issues that ragtoplvr mentioned, the rock in the throttle pulley and a vacuum in the tank from a clogged charcoal canister.

    The rocks are easy to check for, twist the throttle grip with the bike off and watch as the little pulleys on the bike side of the throttle bodies rotate. Remember to check both. See if you've got any rocks stuck in the V groove of the pulley. It'll cause one side to pull further than the other and essentially get your throttle bodies out of sync. While you're looking down there make sure that the sleeve to the throttle cables is fully seated in the adjuster. You'll notice if it's up and out.

    My charcoal canister had somehow completely disintegrated and was releasing charcoal into the vacuum lines and clogging them up. After a 20 minute ride I'd hear a loud CLUNK between my legs and the gas tank would suck itself inward. I had to open the gas cap against a high vacuum, after which the tank would re-expand itself. I spent 15 minutes and got rid of the charcoal canister. It's one less thing to go wrong. Just make sure you block off the nipples on the bottom of the throttle bodies. You'll reroute the hose from the tank to the bottom of the bike, along side the fuel door overflow drain. You can then test by blowing in to the hose that air flows freely along it. My guess is that this is the problem (at least a little vacuum) since it ran better after a wait (and the vacuum relieves itself).

  9. #9
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    I don't know the root cause, but here I sit, bikeless at A & S. They told me that one cylinder is dead with burnt valves and maybe a burnt piston or cylinder.

    The service writer, Tim took a guess that some carbon broke loose and lodged somewhere that it would allow the damage to occur.

    After about two weeks (ordering parts and scheduling issues) and $1500 or so, I can have her back.

    I don't understand, I use the best gas available, have all maintenance done at the dealership (except 2 oil changes and a tire replacement), and don't abuse the bike. Only 66K on the bike. I guess this crap just happens sometimes.

    OK. I'm done whining now. If anyone has any tips how to avoid this problem in the future, I'm all ears.

  10. #10
    MOA #24991 Pauls1150's Avatar
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    I was going to suggest a bad stick coil, or the connector on the coil coming loose, until I read the news from Tim.

    The question then becomes, Where did this alleged carbon break loose FROM? Perhaps another reason to toss the infamous canister...?
    Last edited by Pauls1150; 07-31-2010 at 09:49 PM.

  11. #11
    MOA #24991 Pauls1150's Avatar
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    see more info at
    http://forums.bmwmoa.org/showthread.php?t=47297

    I've always believed that the "factory" valve specs are too tight.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pauls1150 View Post
    I was going to suggest a bad stick coil, or the connector on the coil coming loose, until I read the news from Tim.

    The question then becomes, Where did this alleged carbon break loose FROM? Perhaps another reason to toss the infamous canister...?
    not uncommon for carbon to become deposited on the top of the piston, and to build up slowly over time. engines that are run at lower rpms are much more likely to do this than ones that regularly get driven at 5-6K+ rpm.
    not likely related to the cannister.
    Last edited by bikerfish1100; 08-01-2010 at 10:25 AM.
    Ride Safe, Ride Lots

  13. #13
    MOA #24991 Pauls1150's Avatar
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    Ah yes, thank you!

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    Quote Originally Posted by bikerfish1100 View Post
    not uncommon for carbon to become deposited on the top of the piston, and to build up slowly over time. engines that are run at lower rpms are much more likely to do this than ones that regularly get driven at 5-6K+ rpm.
    not likely related to the cannister.
    Well, there you go. I rarely drive in the 5 to 6K range, usually only when accelerating up hill or to pass. I usually drive around 3 to 4 K.

    It seems that it might be good insurance to have them pull the head on the other cylinder (although Tim said it's at 100%) and check for any carbon buildup and clean it up if necessary.

    Any thoughts on that?

  15. #15
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    wtih a good flashlight, and some turning over of the motor, you should be able to get a look at the piston thru the spark plug hole.
    Ride Safe, Ride Lots

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