Lifetime Airhead Valve Cover Gaskets

Discussion in 'Airheads' started by rwiles, Apr 20, 2012.

  1. rwiles

    rwiles Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2006
    Oddometer:
    84
    I recall seeing someone advertise lifetime BMW Airhead valve cover gaskets, probably made of viton or some other durable material.

    Anyone know where to get these?

    You can write offline if you want: roger@rogerwiles.com

    TY
    #1
  2. caponerd

    caponerd Kickstart Enthusiast

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    Lifetime? What for?
    I'm still using the same paper gaskets I put in my R69S when I restored it in 1996.

    No leaks so far.
    Don't use gasket sealer on them and they'll last a long, long time.
    #2
  3. mark1305

    mark1305 Old Enough To Know Better

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    Probably the folks at Real Gasket. http://www.realgaskets.com/files/motorcycle.htm

    I got a set for the valve covers for the day when the OEM gaskets gave up. So far I've only installed on one side. Works as advertised. Just clean it off and install clean and dry.

    I also got a set of carb float bowl gaskets because my cork ones liked to twist and get pinched - a lot. They worked OK for a while, but eventually they swelled which made them grow bigger (not cord diameter, but in overall size going around the bowl) as if they were for a larger bowl and they wouldn't tuck into the groove without bunching up. Had to go back to cork. I kept the rubber ones, and they appear to have shrunk back to normal after drying out for weeks/months. Haven't tried them again yet.

    Two different rubbers - the valve covers are an orange sislicone type. Float bowl gaskets are black and look like Viton or butyl, but may be silicone too.
    #3
  4. Wirespokes

    Wirespokes Beemerholics Anonymous

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    The only real benefit of the Silicone gaskets is helping to seal warped covers or heads. It's really best to fix the original problem. As caponerd said, the originals last an incredibly long time, especially if treated properly.
    #4
  5. kbasa

    kbasa Roubaix! Super Moderator

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    Roger, this stuff should be in Airheads, so I'm going to move it for you.

    Hope you're doing well!

    dave
    #5
  6. wirewrkr

    wirewrkr the thread-killer

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    I agree with Wirespokes.
    Not worth the money, just fix the actual problem.
    On top of everything else, the bike just looks silly as hell with orange gaskets.
    #6
  7. mark1305

    mark1305 Old Enough To Know Better

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    Pheh! Since my ST is red, the orange just kind of sets the head off like an accent stripe. :D

    But I agree that the paper gaskets are fine. Oil the inside surface lightly upon first installation and keep the outside dry. Cylinder head temps will eventually coke the oil and the gasket will stay "glued" to the head side and allow the cover to come off cleanly. I wouldn't bet against the paper gaskets on mine when I bought it 4 or 5 years ago probably being the originals.
    #7
  8. disston

    disston ShadeTreeExpert

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    I don't have much trouble with the valve cover gasket or the float bowl. They last so long I usually change them because I think it's time or something. My valve cover gaskets are getting frayed around the edges and I'm going to change them soon but I think the ones on there now are 3 or 4 years old. I probably even have another set.

    I do have trouble with the gasket on the enrichner of the carburetor. I recently was messing with an erratic idle problem and it ended up being the enrichner gasket. But it was not sucked in or deformed as sometimes seen. It was only a little black like the carb had back fired a little thru the enrichner. New gasket and all is well. I'm going to try the real gaskets and see if there might be an improvement. I don't know if there will be any actual data to report maybe just a preference. On the web site they say theirs is 1/32 thick. That sounds pretty cool to me.
    #8
  9. supershaft

    supershaft because I can

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    My advise is to never change the stock gaskets unless you absolutely have to. I know that is going to counter many an airhead's goal in life to renew everything on their airheads that doesn't really need renewing and at the same time let stuff that actually does need renewing go for way too long but . . . . :D The head's valve cover gasket surface often warps. You very well might not know it until you renew your gasket and can't get the new gasket to stop leaking. The old one didn't leak because it conformed to the warped head at the same slow rate that the head warped. The new gasket didn't have the chance to do that and leaks for it. I dread replacing valve cover gaskets and keep my fingers crossed every time because you need some luck! I have seen a lot of heads warp there. I have never seen a valve cover warp excepting heavily crashed ones.
    #9
  10. goathead

    goathead grunt and push

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    My paper gaskets tore the last time i adjusted the valves or should i say inspected them so i orderd a set of the Silicone gaskets and i like them and there not that much money 3x the cost of paper woop woop.:freaky
    #10
  11. azcycle

    azcycle Chihuahua Wrangler

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    Yep, I took mine off to paint the covers, couldn't save the gaskets so I put on new, and both sides leak like crazy now.
    #11
  12. Backmarker

    Backmarker Long timer

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    Most any gasket will last the rest of my lifetime. :norton
    #12