Thursday, June 10, 2010

Cucumber Slumber

Photo courtesy of (Creative Commons).

STILL with the overheating!

The process: Burp the air out of the system, fill with antifreeze/distilled water. Do once every 14 days, unless I ride at 50mph or higher. Then, do it more often. I now have only 4 of the 10 screws in the front cowl so I can do this quicker.

I really think I have a bad head gasket, which is a shame, given that we did a warranty repair on this, one year ago (just weeks before the warranty expired). Now, here's the funny part.

The gasket they sent last year, the mechanic showed it to me. It was a tan, cardboard-lookin' affair, with a couple of smears of Permatex in the areas where I had determined the gasket had failed (given where the oil leak was). He theorized that they added the Permatex because they had likely determined this was a weak point in the overall design, and wanted to insure that the gasket sealed better than the factory-installed one (and didn't want to leave it to the mechanic to know where to apply it).

My new gasket arrived today (ordered because I've been bartering a bit with the shop for work). It is NOT cardboard. It is black, and appears to be some type of synthetic material, or perhaps metal...! And it is two-layered, and has what appears to be two brass grommets holding the two layers together. Could they have further determined that the gasket they sent last year was also somehow inadequate, hence the change...? Or [fill in the blank]...?

Keep in mind, this year, there's no oil leak, but air/gases are getting into the cooling system, and IT doesn't seem to be leaking anywhere, either (gasses/coolant filling the reserve tank and outgassing from there might explain that), so this breach seems to be between the cylinder and the water jacket, as best I can tell. Thankfully, the bike still runs great, and other than it occasionally hitting the high temp mark, there are no other symptoms...

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