Brake Fluid & Engine Oil... - Ducati.ms - The Ultimate Ducati Forum
  • 1 Post By Arjay
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old Apr 13th, 2013, 8:19 pm Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 194
Brake Fluid & Engine Oil...

Hi Folks!

I have a question about brake fluid and engine oil, and, while this is not about a Ducati (gasp) the principles should be the same?

I have a CBR 125R (125cc Single Cylinder). It's a small bike and I tend to notice any change no matter how small. In fact, this bike seems to magnify any change at all because you immediately see it in the performance.

I got the bike (a 2008) on Jul 18 last summer with 700k on it (as new). I changed the brake fluid at some point as a matter of maintenance and found that braking performance changed from good to exceptional. HUGE difference. I chalked this up to the fact that it was probably running on the factory installed fluid from 2008.

At Christmas this year I again flushed the fluid, more for something to do than anything else as I wasn't riding. Recently, I've been riding quite a bit and found that my front brake performance was not up to par. I began to think about new pads or steel braided lines. This afternoon though, I flushed out the fluid (again) for something to do. Literally 4 month old fluid being replaced with new.

What did I find? Brake performance increased by several orders of magnitude. No more thinking about new pads or braided lines. The brakes are back to being incredible!

Question:

1) What is it about bikes that makes them so hard on brake fluid?

In the automotive world no-one ever flushes their brake fluid unless they are servicing the brakes which usually happens at 50K and 100K. For most vehicles that can be 3 to 5 years...yet the difference between 4 month old brake fluid on my bike and new is night & day.

Engine Oil

My bike uses a wet clutch and one litre of oil shared between the engine and the transmission. There is no spin on filter but instead uses a wire-mesh screen. I use a magnetic drain plug and there's never any sizeable amount of metal on it even though the magnet is right next to the oil intake hole (everything goes past it).

Because it's only a 125cc engine the first thing you do is change the front sprocket to a 14 tooth (down one) and this keeps the bike in it's powerband all the time. So it's normal to run it at 10,500 RPM pretty much all the time. The rev limiter is at about 12,500

Thing is, I find that I can tell when the engine oil is only one week old. When new oil is installed the engine idles smoother, shifts better, and, more importantly, revs faster, smoother and higher. It takes less time to get to redline. This is infinitely repeatable. When racing against others I find that I always want to have fresh oil (that day) installed if at all possible. It makes a big difference.

Whenever I change my oil it's clear. There's no real contamination showing at all. By appearance you'd swear you're wasting your money. By performance though, you know you're not.

So on both the brake fluid front and the engine oil front, changing them way more regularly (like one month intervals at the outside) makes a HUGE difference.

Can anyone shed light on why? I realize the bike is not a Ducati but I've found that Ducati owners seem to be much more knowledgeable about bikes and these kinds of questions probably apply to all bikes in general although, given that 'real' bikes have so much more power, it's probably not as noticeable as it is on mine.

BTW, if you haven't changed your brake fluid recently, it makes a huge difference!

Best & Thanks!

Last edited by Arjay; Apr 13th, 2013 at 8:41 pm.
Arjay is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old Apr 14th, 2013, 7:26 pm
Senior Member
 
Bonaventure's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Evansville, IN, USA
Posts: 2,312
What brand and viscosity oil are you using that does this short duration performance?


2016 Moto Guzzi Stelvio NTX | 2016 Multistrada S (totaled) | 2013 Multistrada S Touring (sold)
Bonaventure is offline  
post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old Apr 14th, 2013, 8:17 pm Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 194
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lone Ranger View Post
What brand and viscosity oil are you using that does this short duration performance?
I've been using Castrol 4-stroke motorcycle oil (10/40) even though the bike specs calls for 10/30 (I believe). I've also used the OEM Honda oil, with seemingly better results (but still much the same with respect to duration). I've yet to try synthetic, but have more/less decided to buy the OEM Honda synthetic on Tuesday to see if that makes a difference in longevity.

It's very odd, but the bike does see 'severe' service. At 120 KPH it's typically doing 11,500 RPM and I try to keep it there all the time if possible (on the freeway). Basically, in order to pass vehicles you need to continually wring it's little neck. Around town, it's perfect, on the highway, it's a blast, but again, only if you drive the livin' snot out of it at all times. If you don't keep your momentum up (usually by passing everyone) you get bogged down on hills/inclines etc.

The engine/transmission only holds one liter of oil, the bike runs at proper temp all the time (no matter how you drive it - 1/4 up the gage) and the oil always looks new (seemingly zero blow-by). The oil does have a sharp acrid smell to it though when you take it out. It's not a nice smell.

The magnetic drain plug has almost no material on it, the internal oil screen never has anything on it other then a slight bit of 'fuzz'. So, internally and functionally, the engine is pretty much perfect. It's also fuel injected. It's been like this since I got it with 700k on it.

That's why I can never seem to figure out just what the bike does to the oil to make it 'wear out' so quickly. As God is my witness, you change it and the bike's performance will be smoother, faster, and rev higher considerably faster - even when the old oil is relatively 'new' and crystal clear.

I'd give my let nut to understand what is happening to the oil....

BTW, just got back from a long ride on the freeway and the front brake worked unbelievably well - again, I can tell that the 4 month olf fluid was changed out. It's also night & day different so it's not me or my imagination!

Best & Thanks!
Arjay is offline  
 
post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old Apr 15th, 2013, 10:46 am
Senior Member
 
Bonaventure's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Evansville, IN, USA
Posts: 2,312
I would try some Amsoil MCF 10W40 motorcycle oil (JASO MA2) for the engine. If you decide to try, first sign up with an Amsoil distributor for the free 6 month trial of Preferred Customer which nets you up to 25% off on regular price. Amsoil is very shear stable. I am not a distributor.


2016 Moto Guzzi Stelvio NTX | 2016 Multistrada S (totaled) | 2013 Multistrada S Touring (sold)
Bonaventure is offline  
post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old Apr 15th, 2013, 9:29 pm Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 194
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lone Ranger View Post
I would try some Amsoil MCF 10W40 motorcycle oil (JASO MA2) for the engine. If you decide to try, first sign up with an Amsoil distributor for the free 6 month trial of Preferred Customer which nets you up to 25% off on regular price. Amsoil is very shear stable. I am not a distributor.
Thanks! In fact, I was just looking at the stuff the other day at Crappy Tire. They wanted $20 a bottle for it but I checked my local supplier and they can get it to me for $14 so that's much better.

I've got two bottles coming tomorrow and as soon as my new clutch shows up (Kevlar!!) I'll change over to it. I think we're onto something because the picture I always see in my head is that the oil is getting really beat up (sheared?) and this just might case it - thanks again!

Best & Thanks!
Arjay is offline  
post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old May 20th, 2013, 11:58 pm Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 194
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lone Ranger View Post
I would try some Amsoil MCF 10W40 motorcycle oil (JASO MA2) for the engine. If you decide to try, first sign up with an Amsoil distributor for the free 6 month trial of Preferred Customer which nets you up to 25% off on regular price. Amsoil is very shear stable. I am not a distributor.
Just an update, after changing over to your recommended Amsoil, and putting at least 1,000 clicks on the bike, I can confirm that the issue is gone

Oil shear made sense and the performance of the synthetic has not changed since installation. I no longer get that 'dirty oil feeling' after just a few days of hard riding - thanks very much!

Also, on the brake fluid front, I changed it over to DOT4 from a small sealed container and minimized as much exposure to the ambient air as possible. It's been some time now, with a LOT of hard braking and the lever remains firm and brake performance remains consistent all the way through.

Conclusion: Engine oil was being taken out by oil shear and brake fluid probably had moisture causing fluid to boil (and aerate) under hard braking.

Best & Thanks!
Arjay is offline  
post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old May 21st, 2013, 8:41 am
Senior Member
 
Amsoil Dealer Group's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 121
NEVER keep or use brake fluid from a container that has been opened. Use it all or throw it away...

Brake fluid, whether on a bike, car, truck or whatever, should be bled one year and completely flushed the following year. That is Proper Maintenance.

Incidently, a PC Membership is not free. A trial membership is $10.00 ($15 Canadian) for 6 months. After that, it is $20 per year ($30 Canadian)

Bob
Amsoil Dealer Group is offline  
post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old Aug 7th, 2015, 11:41 pm
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 1
Hi guys! New on the forum! Great thread, great info Cheers!




---
honda cbr125r
Badprimer is offline  
post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old Aug 8th, 2015, 1:32 am Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 194
Quote:
Originally Posted by Badprimer View Post
Hi guys! New on the forum! Great thread, great info Cheers!




---
honda cbr125r
Why do I get the strange feeling that's a spam account?
Serious Black likes this.

Best & Thanks!
Arjay is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Ducati.ms - The Ultimate Ducati Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Oil, Brake and clutch fluid recommendations Agro Sport Classic 1 Nov 5th, 2012 7:23 pm
Brake Fluid and Clutch Slave Cylinder Fluid Changed.. strider3 Sport Touring 1 Nov 15th, 2010 10:27 pm
How often do you bleed/flush the brake & clutch fluid? bavarian3 Sport Classic 8 Jul 3rd, 2007 3:13 pm

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome