oil foaming in sight glass

Discussion in 'GS Boxers' started by TORQUEMONSTER, Jan 27, 2013.

  1. Chip Stevens

    Chip Stevens Been here awhile

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    Wallowa. There is always some blow by. One can even hear it when they do a compression check on an aircraft engine. My mechanic rockes the prop back and forth to get as high a reading as he can get. The last check averaged 76lbs with 90 lbs input. The manufacture says it can go down to 60 lbs as long as it is not going past a valve. The point I'm trying to make is blow by is greater then most realize. While I'm pontificating, there are some that feel the loss between the piston and the rings is larger then the rings and the cylinder walls. that would mean seating rings also includes the surfaces between the rings and the piston as well as the rings and the cylinder walls. chip
    #61
  2. def

    def Ginger th wonder dog

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    Carbonic acid is a weakly buffered acid with a pH of ~6.0.

    The acid that does the damage is H2SO4, sulfuric acid, a strong acid with a pH near 3. The H2SO4 comes from the combustion of fuels containing sulfur.

    Quality motor oils with current API ratings contain calcium and sodium and other components that have opposing buffer capacity and neutralize the acids. Currently, engines fueled with diesel are mandated to use ULSD for on-road use, reducing the need for high TBN engine oils.

    So, even your newer HDEO is lower in TBN than a few years ago. An engine oil with a TBN near 8 or 9 is desirable and has adequate capacity to neutralize acids formed by the combustion of even ultra low sulfur diesel fuel. Gasoline engine have even lower requirements for TBN so using a HDEO in a gasoline fueled piston engine provides increased protection from acid and poor quality fuels.
    #62
  3. def

    def Ginger th wonder dog

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    You're correct Chip.

    Good piston, piston ring and cylinder design work together to provide long lasting service under extreme heat with high friction and gas pressures. The boxer engine uses high quality pistons and rings from Mahle, a world class manufacturer (when next watching NASCAR on SPEED, note the Mahle fender sticker on your favorite car).

    Blow-by is inevitable. If the fuel is wet, then you're going to load your engine oil with moisture increasing the potential for the formation of acids. There are many stations that turn over their fuels slowly, maintain their equipment poorly and dispense wet fuel unknowingly, I fuel only at high volume stations that I trust. If you're travelling, truck stops typically have high gasoline turnover and keep their equipment in good working order. Of course, you can always ask the attendant behind the register. I once asked the local station clerk, "When did you get your last fuel delivery" When I heard two weeks ago, I rode on to another station. Motor fuel does sour with age so, use caution.

    If you get water in your crankcase, change the oil and filter ASAP.
    #63
  4. Wallowa

    Wallowa Long timer

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    Thanks for all the infomation on what is not a cut and dried [no pun] topic...water vapor in the crankcase and water in the oil..

    Couple of points and then I will withdraw from what has become an off topic discussion from the original question.

    While the pH is important for any contaminate, the quantity of any contaminate is also critical and can be the controlling factor regardless of the adverse nature of the contaminate.

    Engine blow-by should not be a significant source of engine oil or surface contamination...period. If blow-by is significant enough to contaminate the oil then the motor design, assemble or state of wear is sub-standard. The boxer motor should not have sufficient blow-by to contaminate the oil. And I believe that it normally doesn't.

    Compression on my GSA should be 145 psi and at 125 psi it is considered "poor". Airplane motors with 76 to 60 psi are different animals and not in this mix. All motors are not created alike.

    As with the amount of contaminates [re: pH] the amount of blow-by is a huge factor; so inspite of some gases or fuel escaping past the rings [rings control the blow-by on both the piston and cylinder walls] this should not be a significant source of contamination in a modern, well designed and maintain boxer motor.

    So what is "significant"? Last call, get an oil analysis and quit guessing. You folks have fun...:wink:
    #64
  5. TORQUEMONSTER

    TORQUEMONSTER Adventurer

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    I went for a ride the other day and the foaming oil was gone. When I get the chance I will check the pvc. Does anyone have a diagram of the PVC and how to replace it?
    #65
  6. Wallowa

    Wallowa Long timer

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    See Posts 50 & 51 ...your bike does not have a PVC.
    #66
  7. tps

    tps Adventurer

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    :evil Yeah... most of the plastic is ABS. PVC tends to be a bit more brittle.
    #67
  8. Wallowa

    Wallowa Long timer

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    Done that before...writing "PVC" when it should have been "PCV"....Positive Crankcase Ventilation or in medical terms "Packed cell volume"..

    Odd as I get older this happens more often..:D
    #68
  9. def

    def Ginger th wonder dog

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    That should be PCV (positive crankcase ventilation), a one-way valve that uses intake vacuum to remove vapors from an engine crankcase, not PVC, (poly vinyl chloride), a plastic used in plumbing and as insulation for wire.
    #69
  10. Dan-M

    Dan-M Long timer

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    Wow. All of this for some condensation.
    More riding and less typing is the short answer.:evil
    #70
  11. Bill-66

    Bill-66 Hencho in Kansas

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    You're new here...huh? We will have..conservatively, 5 threads in the coming weeks about which oil to use and tire pressure..get used to it... :lol3
    #71
  12. def

    def Ginger th wonder dog

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    Give Dan a break...he lives in Illinois where the governor makes the license plates and its currently too cold to ride.

    :cry


    :poser
    #72
  13. Bill-66

    Bill-66 Hencho in Kansas

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    :lol3
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  14. Dan-M

    Dan-M Long timer

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    Hey, that's two governors Mister. and untold numbers of mayors, congress men and police chiefs.
    #74
  15. def

    def Ginger th wonder dog

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    Sorry Dan.

    I grew up in Lake Bluff during Richard J. Daley's time. Many of his cronies went to jail. I heard they had to hold city council meetings at the Cook County Jail to get a quorum. :eek1
    #75
  16. N-m

    N-m Captain 2 Sexy

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    GEtting this thread back on track. :norton

    Here is what moisture in your site glass looks like.
    [​IMG]

    My commute is just short of one hour one way. Town is about 10 minutes away but I always detour so I wind up spending 15 to 20 minutes minimum riding when I just make a quick trip. More often than not I wind up hitting the great back roads we have around here and the quick trip turns in to a one hour ride! :clap Therefore I have never seen this problem before yesterday.

    Yesterday it literally rained straight down all day long while I did numerous valve adjustments, topped off the oil, etc. All work was performed in an open air shop a few feet from the rain. I was not able to ride the bike b/c of the work I had to do so at the end of the day I noticed this moisture forming in the new oil that had been changed two days ago, before the rain.

    Once I get things squared away I will go back to riding my normal routine and based on what I have read in this thread this moisture will be burnt off and the site glass will return to normal. This assumes there is no underlying problem allowing water to enter the crankcase. Agreed?

    Thanks.
    #76
  17. N-m

    N-m Captain 2 Sexy

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    Here are some more pics for reference regarding my situation.

    First thing this morning. Bike has sat all night. Oil is low with no presence of water that I can tell.
    [​IMG]

    This shot was taken a few minutes later after I added some oil. The oil was low b/c of the valve adjustment I performed the day before. Note what appears to be the presence of water. This reminds me of someone's post about water on the outside of the glass as well as the inside where water is not standing. This should translate into water on all parts of the engine internals. The oil running into the valve cover must have picked up some water and carried it into the site glass.

    So what do we do at this point? The contamination does not seem to be that bad so I decided to take a chance and go with the "when in doubt ride it" philosophy. YMMV. RYOR.
    [​IMG]

    Here is the last shot of the day. I rode 30 miles in about 90 minutes, shutting the engine down for about 5 minutes at the longest so I stayed at the standard operating temperature for over an hour. I think I can still see some bubbles of moisture in there but will have to wait until tomorrow to see how it comes out. It looks like I may have gotten the engine hot enough long enough to burn off most of the moisture.
    [​IMG]
    #77
  18. slartidbartfast

    slartidbartfast Love those blue pipes

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    What you're seeing here are air bubbles. The amount of condensation you showed in your earlier pics is totally inconsequential IMO. i.e. don't worry about it.

    Are you leaving the bike on the side-stand for a while prior to checking the oil? If not, you may be adding too much. Once again, probably not a big deal and nothing to do with moisture but you will probably find some oil blown into the airbox if you have overfilled and then run at high speed for any significant distance.
    #78
  19. N-m

    N-m Captain 2 Sexy

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    I do leave the bike on the sidestand first and then go to the center stand. I try to use the sidestand for 15 minutes as someone suggested before doing so.

    I am trying to run an oil level at the 50% mark but that is a moving target right now. i will check the air box tomorrow but have not seen anything other than bugs and dirt before.
    #79
  20. slartidbartfast

    slartidbartfast Love those blue pipes

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    Obviously you'll want to work out whether your bike uses oil so you know how closely you need to watch it. My 95 used a bit when I first got it with 22K miles on the clock. By 30K, oil use had dropped to almost zero. Every single time since then I have thought it was a bit low and added oil between services, it has ended up overfilled :1drink
    #80