Stop Leak additive - Triumph Forum: Triumph Rat Motorcycle Forums

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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-15-2010, 02:24 PM Thread Starter
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Question Stop Leak additive

Has anybody tried a stop leak additive? I have seen a oil additive made by White Shepherd and one made by Lucas made for engine and gearbox. I have a 79 Bonneville that has very small engine oil leak, but I get a few drips a night from the gear box. I have tightened all bolts. I am looking for a temporary fix for now and will get gaskets and look into it further at a later date.
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-15-2010, 03:46 PM
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I would definitely NOT use a stop leak additive. Small leaks are normal with these bikes. These additives typically swell seals for better sealing, but not good at all for the long run.

I would live with the minor leaks and change your gaskets when you have the opportunity.

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-15-2010, 07:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TxTiger View Post
I would definitely NOT use a stop leak additive. Small leaks are normal with these bikes. These additives typically swell seals for better sealing, but not good at all for the long run.

I would live with the minor leaks and change your gaskets when you have the opportunity.

Ron
I second that! RR
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-15-2010, 07:18 PM
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Trying to fix a "minor leak" on a triumph is like beating a dead horse. Sure, you'll fix the leak, but since you took it apart a new leak will form. It's a black hole, of sorts. You cannot fix a bad oil joint by adding something to the oil!!!
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-15-2010, 08:30 PM
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I'll take a minor leak anyday. My preunit is ,by design, is a leaker! I have made some units, pretty much leak free, but nothing lasts forever!
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-15-2010, 09:06 PM
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DO NOT put leak preventing additives in your vintage Triumph ... seriously ... don't do it ...

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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-21-2010, 11:52 AM Thread Starter
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Cool Stop Leak

Thanks for your reply's. This group knows much more that I ever will on Triumphs, so I appreciate it.

I would like to play devils advocate on stop leak. These bikes tend to be hobby bikes and not ridden daily. When they sit for long periods, seals and gaskets dry up and that is a bad thing. Also, on a hour ride and the oil heats up, it leaks more.

A stop leak additive expands seals and gaskets, so in that sense it is a good thing. What is the long term downside to these additives or why is it a bad thing?

This time of the year, my work schedule will keep me from seeing daylight let alone working on bikes, (although I always find time for some rides).
I also have old hobby trucks , one in particular with a rear main seal leak, so I am really curious on this stuff.

Thanks

Saltare:
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-21-2010, 12:46 PM
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Think about it, Saltare. If the stop leak causes seals to expand, what do you think is happening to the material from which the seal is made. Something is changing it, and not for the better. An old trick that was used years ago to accomplish the same thing was to put some brake fluild in the engine oil. It also attacks (this is the proper term) the seals and causes them to swell. It was a tactic used by less than stand-up car dealers to get leakers to stop long enough to sell to some poor schnook.

This stuff does not care which seals it attacks, either. If you have a perfectly good o-ring, it will expand that too, until it squishes out of place and gets chewed up in the process.

I know they make stop leak products for radiators that have compounds in them that actually plug holes. If they have similar junk in oil stop leak products, that's even worse because that kind of stuff does not care about which holes it plugs.

It's your bike to do with as you wish. Just keep in mind that there is no free lunch, bud. If this stuff was the way to go, it would sell like hotcakes and you would not have to ask if it was good stuff. Everyone would be using it and know it was great stuff. I would suspect all the oil companies would be putting it in their oils as well.
It doesn't, nobody that knows engines does and knows it isn't, and the oil companies don't.
regards,
Rob
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-22-2010, 09:21 AM
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you have a few choices:

you can live with some minor leaks, it isn't going to hurt anything.

you can put some oddball mystery fluid that will stop the leak but cause bigger problems elsewhere

Or you can attack the problem leakpoints in a manner that will not destroy the engine. these engines can be assembled to not leak, but it usually best to fix these issues during a rebuild when the cases are split.

with a Gearbox Leak, is it leaking from the outer gaskets or the inner seal? from the plunger or drain plug? there is no fix all for any of these. the location of the leak determines the fix.
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