Author Topic: Running in/breaking in a new engine  (Read 1537 times)

Offline Topdad

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Re: Running in/breaking in a new engine
« Reply #15 on: 05.08. 2015 10:57 »
I think this is going to be a case of agreeing to disagree , I've always used  the "soft" way and have never lost an engine I've rebuilt and I'm not to worried about revs ,its load I avoid I've just checked and my latest A10 doesn't suffer from black oil . I'm going to change the oil when I lay the bike up end of October and at present its still showing a nice green tinge . Motors 9 yrs old and still great compression and a first kick starter even after the winter layup. Bob.
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Offline coater87

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Re: Running in/breaking in a new engine
« Reply #16 on: 10.08. 2015 16:42 »
 I agree fully with the nice, soft break-in, plenty of oil changes and checking accessible bolts 4-5 times in first 1000 miles. And by checking bolts I dont mean cranking the snot out of them over and over until its a pile of heli-coils.

 I believe the main factor in bedding rings comes down to the final hone given to the cylinder walls. Stones that are too aggressive leave one thing- deeper scratches. Those "scratches" need to be worn down to smooth by the rings rubbing on the cylinder walls. Obviously, the deeper the scratches the longer this takes, the more leakage you have past the rings for a longer period of time. If you think of hone marks like "mountains", the higher the mountain the more dirt you have to remove to flatten that mountain. That means more cast iron particles floating around somewhere in the motor, for a longer period of time.

 I believe the angle of attack with a hone is a major deal also. Thinking of the barrels standing straight up and down as 90 degrees, you want 25-35 degrees on your hone marks. Honing motions done too fast, 60-70 degrees dont help you at all when you talk cylinder pressures and leakage. Angle is a consequence of the speed you move the hone in and out of the barrels. Slow, and steady with a fine hone, and remember you are honing, not boring. As soon as you have hone marks covering the entire inside surface, you are done. No need to do this for 30 minutes or whatever uncle stinky told you to do when you were just a kid with a go-cart.

 I dont know about anyone else, but when we built motors to race with- motors that went literally wide open all the time, we built slop into them. If you would build a decent street motor with 1 to 1.5 thousandths clearance, we built with 2 to 2.5 thousandths. meaning we built them broke in and loose. We knew it was coming back apart soon anyway, why risk a seizure? Racing motors are generally not built to lost a large amount of miles- hence one of the reasons serious racing is a very expensive, time consuming hobby. In my experience, motors built for racing are built far different then motors built for longevity, but maybe that was just me.

 I also know that most hobby guys dont build a motor and stick it straight into the car/bike and start it up immediately. Most sit for weeks, months, maybe even years before being called into service. I cringe when I see guys use engine oil to assemble a motor, especially if the motor will sit for some time. That shot of 40 weight will have long settled out by the time the engine is fired up. Basically a dry start. Now a days they make assembly lubes that will give you some protection for the first couple minutes until oil pressure hopefully reaches the critical areas. This stuff is thick like snot, and sticks around a while. Its cheap also, compared to a rebuild.

 I also believe the idea of "cheap oil, and rev the snot out of it for X number of minutes with a bag of ice on the rocker box and a Voodoo queen standing by to administer magic",  is a bad idea. This may have worked for someone, but that does not make it gospel. Its a motor, and an expensive one at that. Use good oil with the highest zinc content you can find, probably a break-in oil. Use pre-lube to assemble, more does not hurt anything its just a little waist full. Hone the cylinders correctly, lightly lube the cylinders but be sure to wipe out any excess, it will do nothing but foul the plugs and smoke. Make sure to either kick the bike over without fuel and no plugs until you have oiled it, or take it for a walk until you do. Treat it gently at first start while rough setting the carb, get the bike warm but not too hot. Change the oil either at 5 minutes of run or 2 miles of drive. I can hear it now "how waist full to throw out that oil", that oil is now full of pre-lube, a lot of the tiny particles of debris left in the motor from before the rebuild, bits of bearing, cast iron particles, and a bunch of other crap you really dont want circulating around in there. Get rid of it, fresh oil is a lot cheaper than a new timing side bush.

 The tighter you built the motor, (and only you know how tight it actually is), the more often you should change the oil. All those new parts in there are mating together and breaking in together. In a perfect world the layer of oil between parts would keep them separate and you would never have any wear. But we all know thats not true, so wear is the removal of metal. And all that removal ends up in the oil. Dont get a new motor over hot, thats when things seize. Take it easy.

 Dont over load a new motor, vary the revs but dont red line it. Dont go out on the freeway and drive 200 miles at exactly 60 mph, thats not helping.

 I dont know why some people are so afraid to change the oil, and do it often. They will tell you with one breath they have $3000.00 dollars wrapped up in a new motor, and in the next complain that new oil cost $20.00 and they are not spending that kind of money. *conf*

 Most of those motors we build are for longevity. We know they are expensive to rebuild, quality parts are not easy to find, and we just want to enjoy good running machines. Its the same in all motor vehicle hobbys, be it cars, boats, bikes, or even flying those model airplanes. I dont think I have to force a motor to break in inside of 20 minutes while risking a major malfunction while doing it, to enjoy this. I think I will take it easy, enjoy the 500 or so easy miles, save my heart some stress, and I will certainly change the oil often and use the best quality lubricant I can find.

 These are just my beliefs and I certainly could be wrong, but it really is how I rebuild and break in a motor.

Central Wisconsin in the U.S.

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Re: Running in/breaking in a new engine
« Reply #17 on: 10.08. 2015 19:33 »
And by checking bolts I dont mean cranking the snot out of them over and over until its a pile of heli-coils.

You have some lovely expressions!

Your post is full of good advice and very authoritative. Thank you.

Offline bill harrison

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Re: Running in/breaking in a new engine
« Reply #18 on: 10.08. 2015 20:14 »
I agree fully with the nice, soft break-in, plenty of oil changes and checking accessible bolts 4-5 times in first 1000 miles. And by checking bolts I dont mean cranking the snot out of them over and over until its a pile of heli-coils.

 I believe the main factor in bedding rings comes down to the final hone given to the cylinder walls. Stones that are too aggressive leave one thing- deeper scratches. Those "scratches" need to be worn down to smooth by the rings rubbing on the cylinder walls. Obviously, the deeper the scratches the longer this takes, the more leakage you have past the rings for a longer period of time. If you think of hone marks like "mountains", the higher the mountain the more dirt you have to remove to flatten that mountain. That means more cast iron particles floating around somewhere in the motor, for a longer period of time.

 I believe the angle of attack with a hone is a major deal also. Thinking of the barrels standing straight up and down as 90 degrees, you want 25-35 degrees on your hone marks. Honing motions done too fast, 60-70 degrees dont help you at all when you talk cylinder pressures and leakage. Angle is a consequence of the speed you move the hone in and out of the barrels. Slow, and steady with a fine hone, and remember you are honing, not boring. As soon as you have hone marks covering the entire inside surface, you are done. No need to do this for 30 minutes or whatever uncle stinky told you to do when you were just a kid with a go-cart.

 I dont know about anyone else, but when we built motors to race with- motors that went literally wide open all the time, we built slop into them. If you would build a decent street motor with 1 to 1.5 thousandths clearance, we built with 2 to 2.5 thousandths. meaning we built them broke in and loose. We knew it was coming back apart soon anyway, why risk a seizure? Racing motors are generally not built to lost a large amount of miles- hence one of the reasons serious racing is a very expensive, time consuming hobby. In my experience, motors built for racing are built far different then motors built for longevity, but maybe that was just me.

 I also know that most hobby guys dont build a motor and stick it straight into the car/bike and start it up immediately. Most sit for weeks, months, maybe even years before being called into service. I cringe when I see guys use engine oil to assemble a motor, especially if the motor will sit for some time. That shot of 40 weight will have long settled out by the time the engine is fired up. Basically a dry start. Now a days they make assembly lubes that will give you some protection for the first couple minutes until oil pressure hopefully reaches the critical areas. This stuff is thick like snot, and sticks around a while. Its cheap also, compared to a rebuild.

 I also believe the idea of "cheap oil, and rev the snot out of it for X number of minutes with a bag of ice on the rocker box and a Voodoo queen standing by to administer magic",  is a bad idea. This may have worked for someone, but that does not make it gospel. Its a motor, and an expensive one at that. Use good oil with the highest zinc content you can find, probably a break-in oil. Use pre-lube to assemble, more does not hurt anything its just a little waist full. Hone the cylinders correctly, lightly lube the cylinders but be sure to wipe out any excess, it will do nothing but foul the plugs and smoke. Make sure to either kick the bike over without fuel and no plugs until you have oiled it, or take it for a walk until you do. Treat it gently at first start while rough setting the carb, get the bike warm but not too hot. Change the oil either at 5 minutes of run or 2 miles of drive. I can hear it now "how waist full to throw out that oil", that oil is now full of pre-lube, a lot of the tiny particles of debris left in the motor from before the rebuild, bits of bearing, cast iron particles, and a bunch of other crap you really dont want circulating around in there. Get rid of it, fresh oil is a lot cheaper than a new timing side bush.

 The tighter you built the motor, (and only you know how tight it actually is), the more often you should change the oil. All those new parts in there are mating together and breaking in together. In a perfect world the layer of oil between parts would keep them separate and you would never have any wear. But we all know thats not true, so wear is the removal of metal. And all that removal ends up in the oil. Dont get a new motor over hot, thats when things seize. Take it easy.

 Dont over load a new motor, vary the revs but dont red line it. Dont go out on the freeway and drive 200 miles at exactly 60 mph, thats not helping.

 I dont know why some people are so afraid to change the oil, and do it often. They will tell you with one breath they have $3000.00 dollars wrapped up in a new motor, and in the next complain that new oil cost $20.00 and they are not spending that kind of money. *conf*

 Most of those motors we build are for longevity. We know they are expensive to rebuild, quality parts are not easy to find, and we just want to enjoy good running machines. Its the same in all motor vehicle hobbys, be it cars, boats, bikes, or even flying those model airplanes. I dont think I have to force a motor to break in inside of 20 minutes while risking a major malfunction while doing it, to enjoy this. I think I will take it easy, enjoy the 500 or so easy miles, save my heart some stress, and I will certainly change the oil often and use the best quality lubricant I can find.

 These are just my beliefs and I certainly could be wrong, but it really is how I rebuild and break in a motor.



Thanks, thats more or less what I've been doing.  Up to 600 miles now but the motor is clearly still tight and burning a little oil, I'll continue running in to 1500 miles or so.  I'm planning on no more than 4-4.5K once run in.

Offline Triton Thrasher

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Re: Running in/breaking in a new engine
« Reply #19 on: 10.08. 2015 21:53 »
How long did that take to type?!

Offline coater87

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Re: Running in/breaking in a new engine
« Reply #20 on: 10.08. 2015 22:08 »
How long did that take to type?!

 Not as long as it took to remove all the beautiful "chrome" spray paint from inside the carburetor. What were these guys thinking???

 And one more thing I would make very sure I did before the first start. Vigorously wipe all oil and finger prints from the exhaust pipes.. I know a guy with a real chief, and his prints are permanently baked into the pipes about 8 inches from the head.
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Offline bill harrison

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Re: Running in/breaking in a new engine
« Reply #21 on: 12.08. 2015 15:52 »
How long did that take to type?!

 Not as long as it took to remove all the beautiful "chrome" spray paint from inside the carburetor. What were these guys thinking???

 And one more thing I would make very sure I did before the first start. Vigorously wipe all oil and finger prints from the exhaust pipes.. I know a guy with a real chief, and his prints are permanently baked into the pipes about 8 inches from the head.

As long as they are my finger prints that's rather cool.  Better than putting your post code on!

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Re: Running in/breaking in a new engine
« Reply #22 on: 13.08. 2015 11:56 »
There were some interesting observations there with regard the bore hone and ring break in. A little while ago I re-ringed my Moto Guzzi V50 II at 55k miles. This bike has all alloy barrels with what I think are a Nikasil type plating. The bores themselves still looked like new – as in you could still see what looked like a full set of hone marks. I’d wondered whether I should try and rough this up in any way i.e. with some emery cloth, but ultimately just gapped my new rings (pistons didn’t look bad either), and slung it all back together. Bike runs like a good un, now on c. 62k miles. 

I’m unsure how this is all supposed to work. If the plating doesn’t wear and the ‘hone’ remains exposed that would suggest maybe accelerated ring wear over time? I had been suffering crankcase pressurisation and hence changed the rings. But the V50 motor is quite high revving so I hadn’t figured the mileage to be a bad return for the required replacement at that point.

So I’m confused (as usual). Thoughts?
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Offline coater87

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Re: Running in/breaking in a new engine
« Reply #23 on: 14.08. 2015 00:56 »
 This is beyond my knowledge, once you start getting into alloy barrels, exotic plating, and weirdo ring materials.

 I have heard of these things for sure, but no experience what-so-ever in a hands on way. I dont believe they are all treated the same as far as honing, ring choices, or break in methods though.

 Its hard to believe that there are still hone marks in those barrels after that many miles. Are you sure you have rings made of the right material in there?
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Offline East_Coast_BSA

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Re: Running in/breaking in a new engine
« Reply #24 on: 14.08. 2015 01:34 »
There were some interesting observations there with regard the bore hone and ring break in. A little while ago I re-ringed my Moto Guzzi V50 II at 55k miles. This bike has all alloy barrels with what I think are a Nikasil type plating. The bores themselves still looked like new – as in you could still see what looked like a full set of hone marks. I’d wondered whether I should try and rough this up in any way i.e. with some emery cloth, but ultimately just gapped my new rings (pistons didn’t look bad either), and slung it all back together. Bike runs like a good un, now on c. 62k miles. 

I’m unsure how this is all supposed to work. If the plating doesn’t wear and the ‘hone’ remains exposed that would suggest maybe accelerated ring wear over time? I had been suffering crankcase pressurisation and hence changed the rings. But the V50 motor is quite high revving so I hadn’t figured the mileage to be a bad return for the required replacement at that point.

So I’m confused (as usual). Thoughts?

Chrome and Nikasil bores are very popular with high performance two-stroked engines.  Reason being is two-strokes are very sensitive to "Heat Management".  An aluminum bore with a Nikasil coating will dissipate heat much more efficiently than an iron liner (which holds the heat). Nikasil is superior to chrome for a few reasons.  A chrome liner is about .0005" thick.  If you snag a ring or damage the chrome, it has to be re-chromed.  Being extremely hard and extremely thin, it will peel.  Chrome is also less than optimal for holding an oil film.  The surface is just too smooth.  A ball hone will remove any glazing, but doesn't really effect the surface itself.  Nikasil is a bit different.  It was developed by Mahle piston company as a coating.  It's a little softer than chrome.  It runs about .003-.004" thick (almost 10 times that of chrome).  Since it's thicker and softer, it's not susceptible to peeling.  It also holds an oil film a little better.  Any gouges in the cylinder, especially below the ring travel area are acceptable.  A ball hone will break the glaze and put a light cross-hatch in the cylinder.  Chrome/Nikasil cylinders use different rings than cast iron bores.  Soft iron bores typically use a chrome ring, or a very hard material.  Chrome/Nikasil bores use a softer Moly ring.  Although some people use chrome rings in Nikasil bores, they don't seal as well.  They do last longer though.  At 10,000 to 12,000 RPM, the compression losses aren't too bad.  They just don't time to leak.  So Soft Bore/Hard Ring and Hard Bore/Soft Ring.  If you're just re-ringing, then a ball hone will put a light cross-hatch in the cylinder if it's Nikasil (I think companies have gotten away from chrome).  The rings are soft, so you shouldn't need that much to seat them.  Two strokes seat rings much faster due to compression on every stroke and very high RPM.  I'm a firm believer in Hard break-in.  With two strokes it's a must.  I didn't realize that any four strokes bothered with Nikasil bores.  I'd probably break them in the same way.

Offline duTch

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Re: Running in/breaking in a new engine
« Reply #25 on: 14.08. 2015 09:21 »

 Yep- Gutzzi been running them for a while, read up pa while ago and may have my info scrambled, but I think Mahle  developed that idea for Porsche....
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Online Brian

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Re: Running in/breaking in a new engine
« Reply #26 on: 14.08. 2015 09:56 »
Actually Moto Guzzi invented lined cylinders.

"Moto Guzzi, having successfully created the first engine with a chromed cylinder lining, continued research to find a material that could replace chrome. The research culminated with Nigusil, a nickel-silicon alloy applied to the cylinder through special procedures. This innovation allowed lower friction coefficient in the engine, significantly lower levels of mechanical parts wear, and considerable savings of lubricant. Treatment of cylinders through Nigusil was also used by many manufacturers, Maserati among them, and generally on racing engines."

With basic servicing Moto Guzzi's will do huge mileages without needing attention. You have all probably guessed I like them, I've got two.

Offline duTch

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Re: Running in/breaking in a new engine
« Reply #27 on: 14.08. 2015 10:54 »

 
Quote
You have all probably guessed I like them, I've got two.
... *smile*..yeah but I decided I only need one- in fact I would've bought one much earlier, but as the modern ones even in the seventies didn't have a kick start...wasn't a proper bike without one of them...!!! *bash*
Started building in about 1977/8 a on average '52 A10 -built from bits 'n pieces never resto intended -maybe 'personalised'
Have a '74 850T Moto Guzzi since '92-best thing I ever bought doesn't need a kickstart 'cos it bump starts sooooooooo(mostly) easy
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Re: Running in/breaking in a new engine
« Reply #28 on: 14.08. 2015 12:41 »
From what I read most purchasers of the older Loop frame Guzzis - check for chrome bores and swap them out as soon as they are able; this being due to high likelihood of peel. And I guess chrome shavings is a pretty horrible thing to have passing through an engine.

I too have two Guzzis. The V50 of which I was speaking I've had from new - 1980. I've previously owned a LM II and a T3 (with Busmar D/A) and recently figured my life/garage wouldn't be complete without another round barrel. So I now have an '83 ex Italian police T3.

But of the V50 - I therefore know those miles are genuine. I was also surprised that the honing was still showing in there.

And thanks folks for the info here - much appreciated; even if I've dragged us a little off piste.
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