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Discussion Starter #1
further to my efforts to progress the build of my flat track project - 1970 T120 engine into a 1980 T140 frame
the engine came with a project the rest of which is almost completely sold off
the engine apparently came to oz from the us as completely reconditioned - and from looking at it, that seems believable - sparkling clean and when opening every inspection cap, there's new bits and assembly lube - i don't think its ever been started (for maybe 6 or more years)
so, i'm wondering what i should check before putting into service - i'm thinking valve clearances, clutch adjustment, head stud/bolt tension
is there anything else?
thanks as always
rory
 

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Hi Rory,

In similar circumstances, I follow the advice in Waking The Sleeping Beast. Only two things I'd do differently given your engine and frame:-

just a few days before the start is going to be attempted put 2-2.5 pints of oil ... into the oil tank.

Fill the primary drive with one pint of oil.
... reasons are: the total quantity should be a little less than the total tank capacity (four pints on an OIF vs. five pints on a dry-frame); a twin has a smaller crankcase volume than a triple; WTSB was written primarily for triples.

Hth.

Regards,
 

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Hi Rory, Lots of thoughts on preparing motors for use. Waking the sleeping beast is a good way. This is what I like to do. Take it for that.

I've had some experience with motors sitting a long time. A few thoughts. Assembly lube depending on the formula can harden over time, 6 years is enough. I've seen this twice with moly based lube. When contained in a small area like big ends or bushings such has cam bushings it can harden such it turns to glue & have seen 2 motors spin rod bearings now. Oldy in both cases motor turned fine by hand. Could not feel the hardened lube. My hunch is the hardened lube prevented oil from entering bearings. For this reason I've quit using assembly lube on bushings & insert bearings. It's very good for cam lobes & tips of valve stems & the like. I've also found oil will soften assembly lube fairly readily. Not suggesting taking motor apart though.

Here's my thoughts. I'd start by removing oil pressure switch & pumping oil into the bore. This will force lube into rod bearings & exhaust tappet stems. It will be a little hard to get it in & using a rubber hose around end of pumper type oil can will allow tip to seal & oil will get it. Remove sump plug & observe oil running out. I would not turn over motor yet.

Pump oil into rocker arms to lube inside of rocker shafts.

Also pump oil into oil pump feed tube best you can if it will go. Depends on position of piston in pump.

Next I would remove spark plugs & pump several squirts of oil onto top of pistons to help saturate the rings & upper piston.

If motor is still out of frame you can lube everything inside motor which I would do. Reinstall sump plug. Add a few quarts of oil to sump through TDC plug hole. Reinstall plug. With the help of an assistant. Turn motor so oil is distributed to all internal parts. Keep in mind to the right side parts first like timing gears, right cam bushings. Then upside down for bottom of pistons, & give oil time to run into rocker boxes through the small drain holes in tappet blocks, then roll to left side cam bushings. Keep in mind the left main roller bearing is open so oil will fill primary. Roll around to lube chain & back of clutch parts. Plug off breather vent tube of course. Take your time & roll engine slowly so oil has time to spread. Have oil in trans as well. This will spread oil in trans as well.

After you feel oil is well spread place motor upright. With plugs removed turn over motor to spread oil into cyl walls & rings that may not have had oil. At the same time you turn motor have assistant pump oil into feed pipe. This fully primes pump.

It best to start motor as soon as possible after install. Before 1st start put some oil down spark plug holes. Kick motor a few times to blow out oil. Install plugs & start. I do this 100% time as it assures good piston/ring lube at start up & good oil seal for rings. A few seconds puff of smoke, then road test promptly after verifying oil return.

If motor is in frame I'll again block breather. Fill motor full of oil through TDC hole until it takes no more. Then fill rocker boxes until they take no more. Let it set several hours. Drain sump, primary. Refill primary. Put oil down plug holes, kick over. Install plugs & start. I did this to my motor after 34 years of slumber & a few others now.

With careful cleaning of drain plugs etc & draining into clean container you can see into well, the oil can be reused. On a new motor such as you have all the preliminary lubing should be with only running in (break in) oil.

I have found running in oil is very smart money. It assures a correct break in with minimal chance of ring or piston scuffing. Even Morgo wants you to use break in oil. Looks like this place has it.

From the description this sounds like a good choice for running in oil in AU.


In my area I use Torco TBO 40w as it has proven so effective. Not cheap, but running in oil is the real deal. Do what you want, but I've seen many break in failures by not using real break in oil. I've observed the same good results from several brands now, so it's the formula of break in oils that make them work so well. No friction modifiers in the Penrite suggests it should not make clutch slip. After all your work to save a few dollars & effort to get break in oil is foolish.
Don
 

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Hi Rory,
Personally, if it was mine. I would strip it down completely-every last nut and bolt. If you are lucky it will have been reconditioned by an expert (if you are , very, very, very lucky it will have been TVR7man - Don. But no one is that fortunate). But you don’t know who did it, it might be great or it might be bodged. The other reasons I would strip it are that while one cylinder will have been closed, the other will have had either the inlet or exhaust valve open for years, one cylinder might be rusted or the compression rings seized. The valve that has been open has has it’s valve springs compressed for years, they might have set and lost tension, I would have to check the free length to be confident of the condition.
You will be able to see if Quality parts have been used, reputable bearing manufacturers, etc.
valve timing can be checked, etc, etc, etc.
All of the internal rubber parts/seals would probably need replacing after sitting dry for so long.
If you are lucky all itwill cost is time, gaskets and seals, if you are very lucky you will find and eliminate a potential problem before it destroys your engine.
You will on stripping be able to decide your level of content with the engine, if the crank has not been dynamically balanced, you might consider this a desirable option.
Are the con rods new or 50 years old.
Are the oil passages clear after sitting for so long.

stripping and rebuilding, is the slow and up front expensive option, but you have the reassurance that all is well inside the engine, it is the safe option.
Just starting it up is a little riskier.

As Dirty Harry said: "You got to ask yourself one question, do I feel lucky"

regards
Peg.
 

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Hi Rory, Peg & usually see eye to eye. I very, very much respect her knowledge & opinions. However,I see it differently.

If you prepare it for starting after storage I would take the risk. My valves set for 34 years with a spring or two compressed. Didn't seem to change them. All were the same on bathroom scale. I only removed them to inspect guides & lap valves during tappet block reseal. I reused the rings. Just put cyl back on after tappet reseal. Motor is not hard to remove if you need to tear down later. I got several months use before the tappet block o-ring fractured. I've still got the original crank feed seal I put in 1976. Recently tested oil pressure hold at idle & reving. Was perfect. Bike has covered 22K since storage, 33k overall. I've seen similar good results on about 12 bikes now.

I've seen so many old bikes come out of storage I don't worry about things anymore. They often start to leak after several hundred miles, mostly from PRT seals. But yours have never been hot yet so I'd not change them. I've seen several motors that had surface rust in upper bore above piston & a decided rust ring where piston rings sat. Started motor & rode it. The surface rust disappeared. The rust ring was visible for years, but in most cases ran perfect & used no oil. Unless you see rust really bad I'd not do anything to bores yet. I'd not balance until you feel it run 60-70 mph. If you are happy with it, don't balance. If the seat burns your butt from vibration a dynamic balance is in order.
Don
 

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Discussion Starter #7
thanks all for your well informed advice - its priceless as usual
life has intervened at the moment, so progress is slow
in the new year, i'm intending to fit the engine in the frame and make sure i have all the bits i need and don't need to modify anything before i get the frame painted
then i think i'll take the middle road - not just start it, and not pull it down completely (as things go, i'm feeling pretty lucky and not averse to a bit of risk)
rory
 

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Hi Rory, The oil PRV (oil pressure relief valve) oilway & the oil pressure switch oilway are directly connected in feed side, but the PRV bore has by pass drillings so oil will by pass into sump & timing case rather than passing oil fully into crank & rod bearings. That is fine if that is what you want, you can fill to removed valve cover openings. Where I worked the oil dispensers we used were very high pressure. I would be afraid they would invert crank seal. I've always used a pumper oil can through pressure switch hole.

Filled motor through valve covers & TDC hole. Cheap non detergent would be ideal. I don't know if you can even buy that anymore. Car oil with friction modifiers might mess with break in so I'd avoid that. Car oil will make clutch slip, but subsequent flushing primary will stop slipping without taking clutch apart.

You are on right track in my mind. Trial fit motor & get frame done. Then revisit motor lubing when ready to start. You most certainly can totally fill motor with oil & drain it with motor installed. That will lube almost every internal part. I didn't use to take notes like I do now. I think T140 motor will pistons down takes about 7-8 qts to fill it. It took more than I expected.
Don
 
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