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First off, this seems like a great site for Triumph owners. I just finished replacing the starter clutch on my Trident. All went very very well, although I now have a fairly serious oil leak from what appears to be the clutch pushrod seal. I've read some interesting comments here about that problem, it seems fairly common. Since the oil is pumped into the end of the transmission input shaft and through the orifices to lube the gears, I thought that high oil prssure may be the cause. I removed the pushrod and fitted a length of hose and could blow air into the transmission case thereby proving the orifices are not plugged; the gear cluster was not previously disassembled. I've fitted an oil pressure guage and get a reading of about 50 PSI at idle and it goes off the scale when revved (guage has a 0-60 range). Triumph spec says it should be 40. I've pulled off the sump and removed and inspected the relief valve but everything appears normal, no blockage or corrosion or sticking. As I don't know what the oil pressure was prior to the clutch job, I'm hestiant to just replace the valve without knowing if that in fact will cure the problem, although it seems logical. Could the pressure have always been high?? What gets me is the relief valve consists of meerly a ball and spring and you'd think that any fatigue would cause the spring to go soft and cause low oil pressure. Another fellow commented earlier that the OEM seal may itself be incorrect; maybe the combination of the two things is my problem. Anyone have any thoughts??

Again, great site. I plan to visit often!
 

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Welcome to the site....I recommend you look around at the different forums and become familiar with them. I think Triumphs are great and the site supports that very basic premise. Each forum has a moderator who are there to answer questions and assess problems. If you need something lets us know.. again welcome Lee
 

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Lee / Moderators,

This ones better moved to the T3 Sport Touring Forum. Much more traffic audience there that can address this particular issue.

Dave
 

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i think you may be the only person so far to have checked their oil pressure while experiencing this issue, so i dont know if many will be able to assist in specific terms. i have had no issues with this as of yet, so am unqualified to comment, but im sure some of the other guys will be able to throw an opinion your way!
 

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Barry,

I've had a look at this particular issue some time back on a writeup I did on all of the potential oil leak sources related to the side cover. Sounds like you are sure its the oil seal on the clutch pushrod so I'll skip all of the other places oil can leak from.

I am of the opinion that the clutch pushrod seal and clutch pushrod are not designed properly for this particular application, although Triumph I am sure would disagree. The outside diameter of the clutch pushrod is about 7.9 mm nominal if memory servers me. The clutch pushrod seal inner diameter is listed as 8.0 mm. The problem is two fold. The clutch pushrod diameter is just large enough to agree with the inner diameter of the seal...just barely so. This means there is very little sealing force available to stop oil leaks. The second issue is that the seal is actually designed to seal rotary applications and not linear or longitudinal applications. This means that while it will seal, the action of the pushrod is not what the seal is expecting to see.

Two things you'll want to check. One is the condition of the clutch pushrod. It must be absolutely smooth and mark free where the sealing surface would be. If you can see ANY marks from normal wear on the clutch pushrod, its likely not going to seal. You can however turn the pushrod around and use the other side of the rod (providing its not been used before). THe second thing is the seal. It must be supple and new. If it has any age on it, it may be dry and not able to follow the pushrod properly...consider changing it out. When you change it, you'll want to lubricate the sealing surface and the clutch pushrod generously with silicone grease. It was suggested by members of this forum to install the PUSHROD FIRST, THEN THE SEAL. This is to help assure the seal surface doesn't flip around on you and I think it sound advice.

Some members in our forum have gone to the trouble of installing a larger diameter pushrod with 8mm exact dimensions. This solves the problem well enough to keep you leak free. It is possible to get it to be leak free without going to a larger rod, but the tolerances have to be perfect and your install likewise. The likelihood of leaks, even with new components from the factory seems a lot higher than it should be. That is because you are now relying on the manufacturing tolerances to be just perfect and unfortunately, manufacturing tolerances aren't always that.





As a side comment on your oil pressure, my guess is that your readings were with a cold engine. On startup of a cold engine, oil pressure will be very high. Know that revving the engine in this state will give you oil pressure close to 100 PSI. The pressures drop significantly when the engine is warm and also as the oil starts to shear down due to age.

To demonstrate this point, review the following series of photos. The very first photo was taken about 30 seconds after startup of a cold engine. Oil viscosity is 15W40 and the outside temps were in the 80's. You'll notice that the reading is about 65 PSI on the oil gauge and notice the temperature gauge on the far right hand side is indicating cold as you would expect.



Here is the same idle condition, but with the engine now warmed up to operating temperature. This photo was taken about 15 minutes after the first photo, with the engine simply idling in the driveway. Notice the temperature gauge on the right hand side is much hotter...this is where my fan starts cycling BTW. Idle speed, warmed up engine, oil pressure is indicating about 13 PSI.




Just off idle, 1500 RPM is about 18 PSI




2000 RPM...26 PSI



This was supposed to be 4000 RPM but its difficult to dial up a RPM and hold a camera and snap properly composed photos, so this one is really 3600 RPM...55 PSI



And finally at 5000 RPM...74 PSI




I doubt your oil pressure is the problem here, but you cant always tell without taking accurate measurements. You might be able to get a gauge like this from Parts Source, or your local auto parts store. Just make sure it goes up to 100 PSI and down low enough to see low idle pressure when hot...you'll want to be able to read about 5psi here. Anything lower than 10 PSI at idle and I get uncomfortable, although other members have registered virtually zero idle oil pressure and are still riding.
 
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