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Thread: 2018 R Nine T engine temperature

  1. #1
    Kawa Afterthought weschmann's Avatar
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    2018 R Nine T engine temperature

    Hi folks, a new niner owner. Over the week I did a long tour up to the UP from St. Louis and just at the end of the ride ran smack into stalled traffic. 95 f temperature and heavy humidity. Watched the engine temperature climb up to 290 degrees while shuffling through traffic mess. At first I just shut off engine and rolled forward as it was down hill, fit then traffic started a bit faster to stop and go. So my question is how hot should I let the engine get before pulling over and letting it cool or the traffic abate. Iíve never owned an air cooled motorcycle so looking for some guidelines to monitor engine temp if caught in traffic like this again. What would be a safe upper temp limit to limit exposure to heat related engine damage. Thanks in advance for any guidance!

  2. #2
    People usually have strong opinions about oil. I'm surprised that there haven't been any responses.
    There seems to be a consensus that a quality full-synthetic oil can tolerate a sump temperature of at least 300 degrees F.
    I'm not sure that turning the engine off is the best option because it stops the oil pump which will worsen hot spots in the engine. But what else can you do, right?
    I believe that BMW put a fan on the oil cooler of their RT-P police bikes and I have heard of this being fitted to other bikes.

  3. #3
    Kawa Afterthought weschmann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jnick View Post
    People usually have strong opinions about oil. I'm surprised that there haven't been any responses.
    There seems to be a consensus that a quality full-synthetic oil can tolerate a sump temperature of at least 300 degrees F.
    I'm not sure that turning the engine off is the best option because it stops the oil pump which will worsen hot spots in the engine. But what else can you do, right?
    I believe that BMW put a fan on the oil cooler of their RT-P police bikes and I have heard of this being fitted to other bikes.
    Knick, thanks for the reply. Not sure why there are no more replies myself, unless the T Nine T is just not that popular or this is the wrong forum subtitle to post under. I the second owner of this bike which had two cutesy leather gun (pistol) holders on each side of the bike which I have just removed and it seems to be running a good 10 or so degrees cooler now in flowing traffic. Itís beginning to look like this is just the normal operating temperature but will check with the dealer this week to get reassurance. Plan on keeping this bike for more than a couple of years so want to do everything possible maintenance wise to keep her in top shape. Will look into oil cooler fan.

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    Liaison 20774's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by weschmann View Post
    Knick, thanks for the reply. Not sure why there are no more replies myself, unless the T Nine T is just not that popular or this is the wrong forum subtitle to post under.
    Should the be right forum area!
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    Registered User lkchris's Avatar
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    A BMW service manual published in the mid '90s when the Oilheads first arrived indicated maximum permitted idle time stationary was 30 minutes. Haven't seen this information in anything since.

    Remember with an air cooled engine, every rpm increase only creates more heat. It creates zero cooling. So don't blip the throttle while you wait, just let it idle at slowest speed. Turning engine off isn't a bad idea, assuming you have battery for restart.
    Kent Christensen
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    Kawa Afterthought weschmann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lkchris View Post
    A BMW service manual published in the mid '90s when the Oilheads first arrived indicated maximum permitted idle time stationary was 30 minutes. Haven't seen this information in anything since.

    Remember with an air cooled engine, every rpm increase only creates more heat. It creates zero cooling. So don't blip the throttle while you wait, just let it idle at slowest speed. Turning engine off isn't a bad idea, assuming you have battery for restart.
    Thanks Kent. Thatís the kind of information Iím looking for. A guideline to follow in the course of an extended traffic stop due to some issue. When completely stopped I immediately turned her off, but then traffic started up again after about five minutes but only at maybe two to three mph with stops. Engine temp was up to 290 so not sure how much further I can go without issues.

  7. #7
    Left Coast Rider
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    Just curious, is the "engine temperature" that you speak about actually oil temp? If it is then I'd definitely be using a synthetic oil. It can sustain temperatures over 300F. As well, your idea to turn the engine off is a good one - its the only way an engine will cool short of more airflow. Alternately, if you ride with an open-face helmet, you could try blowing on the cylinders like you're trying to blow out the candles on a birthday cake. Ok, fine...not helpful.

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    Kawa Afterthought weschmann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BC1100S View Post
    Just curious, is the "engine temperature" that you speak about actually oil temp? If it is then I'd definitely be using a synthetic oil. It can sustain temperatures over 300F. As well, your idea to turn the engine off is a good one - its the only way an engine will cool short of more airflow. Alternately, if you ride with an open-face helmet, you could try blowing on the cylinders like you're trying to blow out the candles on a birthday cake. Ok, fine...not helpful.
    Good question! The gauge is titled engine temperature so not sure if the oil is the same temperature or not. Still learning all there is to know about air/oil heads so appreciate the question. Hope someone may chime in and expand on the topic. Plan on stopping g by my most excellent dealer in a couple of days for some more info but certainly appreciate the wealth of knowledge here on the forum. Iíve seen little temperature gauges that screw into the oil fill socket but not sure if they are really accurate or more for just show.

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    Left Coast Rider
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    I'm going to guess that we're talking oil temp. If it were head temperature, it would be WAY higher than 290F.

  10. #10
    Kawa Afterthought weschmann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BC1100S View Post
    I'm going to guess that we're talking oil temp. If it were head temperature, it would be WAY higher than 290F.
    Iíll post back after I get a chance to talk to the service guys at bmw.

  11. #11
    Kawa Afterthought weschmann's Avatar
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    R Nine T engine temp.

    So according to the service guys, they suggested that I shouldnít worry about engine heat unless warning light comes on.Forgot to ask about whether it signifies oil temp or engine temperature so still in the dark about that. I was counseled that if flashing warning light goes on to either risk a citation running on the shoulder or stopping on shoulder to let cool off or let traffic disperse. Hard to do that on a really hot day so I guess I will start a small ticket fund for emergencies if I end up in that kind of situation. So in stop and go traffic Iíll toggle to engine temp mode and monitor , not worry about it and just ride.😀🏍

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