It's a sad day in my garage...

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by WageSlave, May 22, 2007.

  1. WageSlave

    WageSlave Been here awhile

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    ... my '03 KTM 640 ADV is in the ICU. The final estimate from 3Brothers Racing to get the bike back on the road is $2,400.00 (that's major scratch for me... I work full time for Saddleback Church, its a great job but noone who works there is there for the salary). The piston rings self destructed. Fortunately there's no secondary damage, but the service department recommends replacing the valves, bearings, and timing chain in addition to repairing the piston and new gaskets. Parts alone add up to $1,400.00 according to their shop manager.

    I know I can get the replacement parts for less myself, a 15% discount on KTM parts comes in handy. What I don't know is if I can put the engine back together myself. This is a call out to Creeper, Passmore, Surfphoto, Meat Popsicle, and the rest of ya'll who have more experience with this sort of thing than I do. I'm no slouch with a torque wrench, I've got DustJunkie on my side for help as well.

    Should I tackle this and put her back together myself or is it time to face the music and part her out for sale? If it weren't for the piston rings she'd be in incredible shape, I've really taken good care of her.

    I'll be picking her up this afternoon; the various pieces of her that is.

    It is truely a sad day in my garage!
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
    #1
  2. creeper

    creeper Still alive...

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    Yes you can and should... I'd be happy to walk you thru the process.
    I have a head, valves, springs and such if you need them.
    If the head needs rebuilding (which I find hard to believe... mileage?) I'll rebuild it for you... cheap.

    Cam chain... why?

    Addendum: Almost missed it... repairing the piston? :huh
    They want to replace a bunch of shit that had no collateral damage... but they want to repair the piston. WTFIT?

    Back to you WS
    #2
  3. WageSlave

    WageSlave Been here awhile

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    Thank you Creeper, that's the encouragement I needed to hear!

    I'm definitely picking the bike up today. She'll be home this evening. I have the full repair manual on disk as well so I can refer to it for the engine reassembly. Having your expertise to call on is greatly appreciated, as well as the expertise of the other members here.

    She's got about 6K miles on her, 7K tops. I can't recall at the moment, she's been out of commission for a few months while I was trying to save up the cash to get her into the shop.

    The estimate most likely included replacing the piston, rather than repairing it. I was spinning a bit at the $2,400.00 quote as the rest was explained.
    #3
  4. creeper

    creeper Still alive...

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    Time to read all things pertaining to the top-end. Make notes of everything you don't understand or seems a bit odd. Those questions can be answered as the job comes up.

    When you go to pick up your shit... have the service manager, or more likely a tech explain to you exactly why they want to replace what they want to replace.
    Take notes or tape the conversation... you won't remember this shit later. :tb
    Did they offer an explanation of why the rings failed? This is not a very common occurrence.

    The most difficult thing for you will be (unless you have the equipment) measuring things.

    Bolting and un-bolting is no biggie. Patience, cleanliness and "exactitudeness" is the cornerstone of this job. (Yes... it's a word :evil )

    Take photos of everything that is suspect.

    If you need all the bits thay say you do... then all you're saving is the labor, which can stll account for at least half the jobs value. And... if you do it yourself, you get smarter in the process.

    Press on...
    #4
  5. husky123

    husky123 Long timer

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    Just another example in a long line of Creeper being THEE MAN!:clap
    #5
  6. creeper

    creeper Still alive...

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    Shut up you... or I'll recall your seat. :evil
    #6
  7. Ruffus

    Ruffus Dirty Old Mudder

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    for a couple hundred $$ you can get some pretty good quality measuring tools (vernier's, micrometer, bore gauge) not tools you would use everyday, but it's not like they will go bad, just have to learn how to use them properly
    #7
  8. WageSlave

    WageSlave Been here awhile

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    I'm taking notes!

    Dustjunkie quite likely has every tool that I don't, including precision measuring tools. I also have a close friend who is a machinist, I can rely on him for any such precision measuring tool(s) that I may not have immediate access to.

    This will be interesting, but I like challenges. Nothing gets done right unless we do it ourselves, or so I've heard.

    There was no explanation as to what may have caused the rings to break up. Fortunately there was no additional damage (no scoring of the cylinder, etc.).
    #8
  9. wickedsprint

    wickedsprint Banned

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    You should definitely tackle this, worse case scenario you speed up the parting out process. In all seriousness this should not be that difficult, you'll likely surprise yourself. PM Laramie LC4, he has taken his apart a few times and knows his way around that engine.
    #9
  10. boother

    boother Been here awhile

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    Is there more to this story....:huh I absolutely lust after KTMs and a LC4 in particular so please tell me that this was operator error, brain fart or something.... I wish I could help. No experience with the LC4 but pretty good with a wrench:wink: but I am in Indiana. Good luck with the project.
    #10
  11. fixer

    fixer KLR-riding cheap bastard

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    :eek2 you can get a whole KLR for that! :deal









    :hide :lol3
    #11
  12. gaspipe

    gaspipe Wandering Soul Super Moderator

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    Any idea *why* the rings grenaded?

    :ear

    Sorta sounds like a case of detonation wherein the piston and rings took an asswhoopin'. The bore would be suspect too. On the other hand, if your crank bearings died, you had an oiling problem that caused all of this.

    The spooky thing is it sounds very close to what happened to my '03, and it turned out to be a bad case half that precluded one of the Eaton pumps from doing anything productive. The thing ran for 3k before it blew up.

    My other '03 that came from the West Coast suffered a ring failure also, but KTM fixed that one under warranty and wouldn't come clean on what they found.

    Please keep us infomed of the findings as you're not the only one to have issues with the LC4 motor, and your experience, albeit sucky, might help the next poor slob.

    :thumb
    #12
  13. creeper

    creeper Still alive...

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    What... never heard of "ring monsters"? [​IMG]

    OK... it's a pizza, but it is round and being eaten.
    #13
  14. DSM8

    DSM8 Where fun goes to die....

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    I just got done doing the same thing to mine, i have extra gaskets etc.

    Yours for the cause.

    Give me a call (pmd the number to you)
    #14
  15. gaspipe

    gaspipe Wandering Soul Super Moderator

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    Pac Man Fever.
    #15
  16. Zerodog

    Zerodog Long timer

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    ?? I wonder what happened. KenR's 03 had some ring/ piston trouble for no good reason as well It also had pretty low miles. I think somewhere under 10k.
    #16
  17. K80JIM

    K80JIM Super Tanker

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    Sorry to hear about the bike. Maybe this would be a good one to try the Wossner Light Weight Piston and Balance Job on. Let us all know how it works out. I think I am near you. Huntington Beach. Mine has about 7500 miles on it. No problems let. Let me know if I can be of any help. If you find yourself looking for a tool or info drop me a pm. Maybe I can help.

    Jim
    #17
  18. alpiv

    alpiv Sr. nOOb

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    Mine is @ 7,000 with no problems today (Cross my fingers).

    I will be keeping tabs on this.

    Creeper, again your generosity amazes me [​IMG]
    #18
  19. boother

    boother Been here awhile

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    Apparently this is a common problem. :eek1 Remind me not to buy a bike that grenades the top end at 6k-7k miles. That's just ridiculous and I don't care how well tuned for power or how great a bike they are...
    #19
  20. creeper

    creeper Still alive...

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    It's not a common problem. It's 2-4 people on an enthusiast site all complaining about the same thing... what a fuckin' shock that is.

    What you won't see is the several thousand other LC4 owners who have 20, 30... 50 thousand miles on one of these bikes posting on this thread to say "Gee wiz... my bike is fine".

    Instead we get guys like you who don't own the bike, no nothing about the bike... bad mouthing the bike. Again... what a fuckin' shock that is.

    Nothing like the interwebnet to turn a fart into a shit-storm.

    C
    #20