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well today was my first oil change.....(444 miles) and that oil filter is a pain in the ***. i had to stab it with a screw driver to get it off and even then it was still hard and messy. so i had a few questions...

1. is semi synthetic oil allright under 600 miles? (thats what i put in and was recommended)
2. who makes a good replacement oil filter thats easier to get off/ less messy? i hear K&N? if so which one?
3.anyone use a quick drain for the oil bolt?. we have one on our plane and it really makes things quick and easy.
4. is "hand tight" enough for the oild filter? i got it as tight as possible using a rubber grip for opning jars but im not sure if that is enough because its a tight place to work with.

so im planning on doing another oil change at 700 or 800 and wana have all the right stuff for the next one. oil changes should be quick and easy and never hurts to do one.

Thanks for the input.
 

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Patriot Guardian
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28,016 Posts
I always switch my vehicles to full synthetic at the first oil change... 50 miles on my dirtbike, 500 on the Vulcan, 2k on the cages.

I use the Fumoto drain valve on my cages, but wouldn't think of putting one on a bike. I'm not familiar with the sportbikes, but on the Vulcan cruisers, the plug is far too vulnerable (on the bottom of the case).
I've tried the Fram Sure-Drain, and it has two problems... it's slower than draining snot, and with the thickness needed in the plug to house the valve mechanism, it sticks up quite a ways into the pan and you don't get a complete drain.

Kawi CRANKS the OEM filter. Use normal procedure for replacement... no more than 1 full turn after gasket contact. I suspect Kawi is not putting fresh oil on the gasket before mounting the OEM filter.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
(random side note) rich, my nabor also rides with the Patriot Guard, hes gone on a ride all the time. his dam indian wakes me up at like 5 in the morning all the time
 

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jerkybear's Vulcan
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What kind of oil do you use? I use Mobil 1 synthetic in my cages. I have 3000miles on my 900LT, can I switch to synthetic now? Thanks.
 

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Patriot Guardian
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You can switch to synthetic right out of the crate if you'd like. "You can't go synthetic until the engine is fully broken in" is an outdated issue and now falls firmly under the category of "myth". 125,000 miles on my Tundra, never burned a drop of oil. 75,000 on my wife's Rav4, over 70,000 on her Echo, 45,000 on my Duramax, and now nearly 17,000 on my Vulcan.

I feel that two of the best products available are Mobil-1 and Amsoil.
For 10w40 (MOM recommended for temps up to 100 degrees) it's Amsoil MCF, Mobil-1 MX4T or Racing-4T (same product, new name is Racing-4T).
For temps above 100 but not below 35, 20w50 works well, and is what I use.
Amsoil MCV, Mobil-1 V-Twin.

Don't be fooled by the names... V-Twin is marketed as a V-Twin oil because it is common for air-cooled V-Twin bikes to run hot on the rear cylinder, which would require a 20w50 oil for normal temperature conditions. I happen to run it because in Southern California, we can swing from a high of 65 to a high of 95 in a week, so I have no way of knowing if I'll be riding in temps above 100 for "the next" 5,000 miles. OTOH, it's rarely below 35.

Likewise, MX4T was originally targeted at motocross, because 10w40 is a common weight. Mobil realized that they might be losing market share to other suppliers, and changed the name to make sportbike owners more comfortable.


My personal tests over the first 12,000 miles on my Vulcan:
http://personal.linkline.com/rlockyer/oil/oil.xls

Note the difference in viscosity at the beginning and end of the run... and keep in mind that these were 2,000 mile change intervals, with the exception of the Motul product, which caused severe clutch slippage and I had to dump it at 1500. The Motul product IS a JASO-MA oil, and I was quite surprised to get slippage as serious as it was.

On the viscosity numbers, a reading of 85 to about 110 is a 50wt oil.
70 to about 85 is a 40wt, about 58 to 70 is a 30wt, and 45 to 58 is a 20wt.
The tests do not show cold viscosity (which would show the oils as being 20w), only high temp, so even though I was testing 20w50, the test results "read" as if it were a straight 50wt.

This is important, because if you compare the viscosity of the various products, both virgin samples and use samples, you can see how far they sheared down in 2,000 miles... most notably, after 2,000 miles, both the Mobil-1 and Amsoil products tested within grade for a 50wt, while EVERY other oil (including a couple of well-respected synthetics) sheared down to just breaking out of the 40wt range down into 30wt territory.
That may or may not tell the whole story, which is why I paid for tests on unused samples as well... so I would have a good comparison. If an oil begins at 105 and ends at 95, then it really is no "better" (more shear stable) than an oil that begins at 95 and end at 85.

What these comparisons show is that Mobil-1 sheared down about 11.5%, Amsoil only 6.9%, Motul 21.5%, Castrol GTX 27%, Mobil-1 15w50 26%, and the well-respected Royal Purple, a whopping 30% drop, HOWEVER, the Royal Purple run included over half of the test on a single 3-day road trip, riding 2-up in high temperatures.



I am currently running V-Twin to 5,000 miles and will post the analysis on the above spreadsheet. The results of this test will either confirm the product's quality, or show a need for further testing.
 

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Premium Member
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well today was my first oil change.....(444 miles) and that oil filter is a pain in the ***. i had to stab it with a screw driver to get it off and even then it was still hard and messy. so i had a few questions...

1. is semi synthetic oil allright under 600 miles? (thats what i put in and was recommended)
2. who makes a good replacement oil filter thats easier to get off/ less messy? i hear K&N? if so which one?
3.anyone use a quick drain for the oil bolt?. we have one on our plane and it really makes things quick and easy.
4. is "hand tight" enough for the oild filter? i got it as tight as possible using a rubber grip for opning jars but im not sure if that is enough because its a tight place to work with.

so im planning on doing another oil change at 700 or 800 and wana have all the right stuff for the next one. oil changes should be quick and easy and never hurts to do one.

Thanks for the input.
It's really easy to do the oil changes yourself, BUT...
I would strongly recommend taking it to the dealership for the first scheduled maintenance. Unless you have the skills, service manual and tools to do all the recommended things (which on many bikes includes a valve adjustment) it's worth the extra money spent. I do my own minor stuff, like lubing chain and cables, checking nuts and bolts, oil/filter changes, but the big service intervals are done by people who know what they're doing when it comes to that stuff (not me).
 

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i just went through the hammer and screwdiver thing on my zx-10....the last guy (my buddy i bought it from) that did it did the same thing... i`ve had a ton of bikes, worst oil change x pr ince ever. i dont think they were overtightend..maybe, maybe lack of lube. i put mine on a half turn after seating...it leaked a drop...went just a 1/4 turn more. really the way mine is positioned its hard to tighten or loosen......and i work on cars for a living!
 

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well today was my first oil change.....(444 miles) and that oil filter is a pain in the ***. i had to stab it with a screw driver to get it off and even then it was still hard and messy. so i had a few questions...

1. is semi synthetic oil allright under 600 miles? (thats what i put in and was recommended)
2. who makes a good replacement oil filter thats easier to get off/ less messy? i hear K&N? if so which one?
3.anyone use a quick drain for the oil bolt?. we have one on our plane and it really makes things quick and easy.
4. is "hand tight" enough for the oild filter? i got it as tight as possible using a rubber grip for opning jars but im not sure if that is enough because its a tight place to work with.

so im planning on doing another oil change at 700 or 800 and wana have all the right stuff for the next one. oil changes should be quick and easy and never hurts to do one.

Thanks for the input.
buy a factory oil filter in case you need to use your warranty,
 

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1. is semi synthetic oil allright under 600 miles? (thats what i put in and was recommended)
2. who makes a good replacement oil filter thats easier to get off/ less messy? i hear K&N? if so which one?
3.anyone use a quick drain for the oil bolt?. we have one on our plane and it really makes things quick and easy.
4. is "hand tight" enough for the oild filter? i got it as tight as possible using a rubber grip for opning jars but im not sure if that is enough because its a tight place to work with.

so im planning on doing another oil change at 700 or 800 and wana have all the right stuff for the next one. oil changes should be quick and easy and never hurts to do one.
1. Yes it is fine.
2. K&N is an overpriced low quality filter w/ a nut on the end. Makes it nice to remove, but it isn't a great filter. I'd rather use a better filter that is easily removed if you tighten it properly.
3. No experience with them.
4. Yes, I hand tighten my filters and I even use my hand to take them off. An oil filter does not have to be on very tight. Once the gasket touches another 3/4 of a turn is all that is needed.

I personally like and use Rotella oils. They are top notch and relatively low cost. I use Rotella Synthetic 5w-40 and if they don't have that I'll run Rotella 15w-40, which isn't a synthetic but very acceptable IMO. One of the best available filters is the Pure One PL14610 and it only costs around $6. All in all, I think any kind of maintenance around or under $20 is pretty cheap.
 

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they make a cup style filter wrench that has a square drive for a ratchet its cheap and well worth it.
I usually tighten with a wrench myself but that comes from being a truck mechanic and not wanting to see a 10000 + dollar engine blow because the filter wasn't tight and I have seen people do it. Also overtightening can be just as bad as too loose
 

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Patriot Guardian
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buy a factory oil filter in case you need to use your warranty,
Not true.
In the US, we are protected by the Magnusson-Moss act. If a manufacturer requires only OEM parts be used to maintain the warranty, they must be provided for free.
 

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Not true.
In the US, we are protected by the Magnusson-Moss act. If a manufacturer requires only OEM parts be used to maintain the warranty, they must be provided for free.
dude, i work at a shop, a kawasaki shop, so tell me how you know more than me. sorry to be a butt i've seen it a million times.
 

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dude, i work at a shop, a kawasaki shop, so tell me how you know more than me. sorry to be a butt i've seen it a million times.
dude, Talk to your field service rep and he will tell you the truth. I have also worked with dealers and they used to claim that also. The fact is unless the manufacturer can directly prove it was the fault of the filter they cannot void anything. Its a strong arm tactic and is against the law and if anyone actually took it to court the manufacturer willl lose . Unfortunately most do not know any better so the just believe the dealer or manufacturer.
 

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Patriot Guardian
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dude, i work at a shop, a kawasaki shop, so tell me how you know more than me. sorry to be a butt i've seen it a million times.
What you've seen doesn't change the law.
Dealers get away with it because customers don't know the law and their rights.
 
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