KTM EXC Oil Level/Change??

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by dirtriderbloke, Jun 11, 2013.

  1. dirtriderbloke

    dirtriderbloke Been here awhile

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    hi. i just have a general enquiry. i did around 10-12 hours of riding since a previous oil change and checked the oil level in the small glass and i couldn't see any oil showing in it. so i decided to drain the oil and do an oil change and measure/calculate how much oil in total was drained out of the bike and it was 770ml that was left in the bike from when i drained it. The bike takes 1.2 litres in total. I know oil degrades with the heat and over time but i didn't think that much over 2-3 rides. i topped up straight after i got home from my last ride as soon as i noticed the lack of oil level in the glass, but im wondering, would that have done any damage? and what level is it meant to or able to go down to before problems start persisting with the bike/engine(what is a safe level amount)?? i was told by other KTM owners that as long as it's got more then half the capacity the bike takes in total of oil when it's drained, it should be alright but just want to check and confirm. any help/advice is greatly appreciated, thanks. Also, the bike has had a fresh top and bottom end done about 60 hours ago.
    #1
  2. Tha Rick

    Tha Rick Shake and bake!

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    what year? CC's', etc..

    Btw- the 530's burned oil a bit, but i doubt you did any damage, unless you were redlining it like a redneck with a passion for Harley noise.

    Best of luck!
    #2
  3. dirtriderbloke

    dirtriderbloke Been here awhile

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    oh sorry. KTM 450 EXC 2004
    #3
  4. Tha Rick

    Tha Rick Shake and bake!

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    Top end include new valve guides and seals? or just a ring job.
    #4
  5. dirtriderbloke

    dirtriderbloke Been here awhile

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    nah complete top end including valves, seals, gaskets, rings, piston, etc + complete new bottom end including bearings, conrod, etc.
    #5
  6. Tha Rick

    Tha Rick Shake and bake!

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    How's the plug look? with a carb'd bike it can be tough to tell whether it's burning rich or oil is getting in..

    Also take a look at the end of the exhaust- is it a bit oily?
    #6
  7. dirtriderbloke

    dirtriderbloke Been here awhile

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    checked the plug, it is a nice crispy brown colour not too rich and not too lean and nothing from the end of the exhaust
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  8. Tha Rick

    Tha Rick Shake and bake!

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    Sounds a bit like ring's to me. I know the "break in" procedure is to take it easy, but I've had better luck with about 3 heat cycles and then do a few hot lap's to seat the ring's.

    Edit- that's just me...but it seems to work.
    #8
  9. Tha Rick

    Tha Rick Shake and bake!

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    So 2-3 rides between oil changes- how long and terrain?
    #9
  10. Tha Rick

    Tha Rick Shake and bake!

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    Oh, and if I run low on oil during a ride, I'll change the filter just in case.
    #10
  11. dirtriderbloke

    dirtriderbloke Been here awhile

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    1st 2 rides were 4 hours long and the last ride was 3 hours long. terrain was mainly fire trails & single trails.
    #11
  12. Tha Rick

    Tha Rick Shake and bake!

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    Sounds like normal oil loss for an older KTM, regardless of the rebuild.

    Fill 'er up after about 4-5 hour's of run time, and grip it and rip it!!

    But that's just my opinion...there may be other's who chime in later. Their opinion's are just as valid.
    #12
  13. dirtriderbloke

    dirtriderbloke Been here awhile

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    ok cool. thanks for the help mate. ill definitely be keeping an eye on the oil levels and taking other people's advice/opinions into consideration if they chime in later :)
    #13
  14. Tha Rick

    Tha Rick Shake and bake!

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    BTW- I've had 525's, 530, a couple of 950's and a '12 500 and they all consumed a bit of oil.
    #14
  15. dirtriderbloke

    dirtriderbloke Been here awhile

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    yeah it makes sense for it to do that. i was just mainly concerned about weather i rode it with not enough oil in it or not
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  16. Off the grid

    Off the grid Unsmooth Operator

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    Couple of things.

    1. Don't go by the sight glass, it will absolutely drive you crazy and is notoriously unreliable. Just change it frequently, and the filters every 2-3 oil changes. Measure what comes out to see if you are burning oil.

    2. When you drain it you will only get 1L max because the 200ml is being taken up by the filters and associated plumbing.

    3. Don't micromanage it. They are very hardy bikes. I once did 50 hard enduro miles with only 250ml of oil in my entire bike due to taking a rock to the engine case. I fixed the hole with JB, topped it off with crappy, gas station no-name oil and finished the ride.
    #16
  17. dirtriderbloke

    dirtriderbloke Been here awhile

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    ok thanks for all that advice mate.
    what do you mean by micromanaging it?
    and if i only ever get 1 liter in total out of the bike, im assuming that means that the 770ml that i drained out via the drain plug isn't too bad then?
    #17
  18. 400psi

    400psi Cropdusting

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    Did you take out the lower screen bolt? If not the rest may be there. Other than that, what otg said
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  19. 211

    211 ThorsPadre

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    One thing to keep in mind is the oil in the RFS motors dont always drain back to the sump when the bike is off. Some oil gets trapped in the various galleries which makes the sight glass very unreliable cause you'll end up overfilling it (ask me how I know).
    I've never been comfortable with the 'just ride it' method or the 'just change the oil more frequently' method. I know my bike burns oil but I never know how much or how much to add... so here's a method that I use and I've been pretty comfortable w/ the results; never overfilled and always within warm and fuzzy view of the sight glass.

    Before a ride I'll crouch in front of the sight glass with a flashlight and sloowly lean the bike towards me while shining the light down into the crank case through the window. If I have to lean the bike over so far that it gets too heavy to hold and I see NO signs of oil, I know to add oil. Then, with the bike centered I'll add oil to the very bottom of the sight glass (just to where I can see it with a flashlight).

    If before a ride I lean the bike and see oil (again, using the flashlight) before the bike gets to heavy to hold up I call it good and go ride.

    Never had an overflow issue and have always felt good knowing the oil level was in sight.
    #19
  20. dirtriderbloke

    dirtriderbloke Been here awhile

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    sweet. thanks for the advice mate. i will definitely do that from now on. i haven't changed the filters yet but i added in 1.2 liters of oil anyway....does that mean i should re-drain it and then re-fill with only 1 liter? or just leave it and change the filters anyway?
    #20