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Discussion Starter #1
Hi,

I got in the mail today, a oil temp gauge that threads into the oil fill port. I rode the bike hard today and got the temp up to 80deg C, or about 190deg F.

What is an average temp that you guys are seeing? My bike is heavily modified, and I re-located the oil cooler up under the head light.

Thanks,

Bill
 

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Mine goes up to 80 degrees C after 15 or 20 minutes, 100 degrees C on a spirited ride, and stays there. These air cooled motors can get pretty hot and handle it fine. Stop and go riding and idling are the worst.
 

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Old Wizard
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Oil Temperatures

Air-cooled engines are designed to run hotter than water-cooled engines, but the rules for oil temperatures are the same for both engines. YOU may be uncomfortable at the higher engine temperatures but the engine has been designed with adequate materials and thermal expansion clearances to run just fine.

From the engine point-of-view, you should expect to see indicated oil temperatures between the gauge midpoint and three quarter mark with occasional excursions to full scale. That’s how the manufacturer selects the gauge mid-point. If the oil temperature is too cool the oil viscosity is higher so you will loose power due to pumping losses.

From the oil point-of-view, you need to maintain lubrication and a high enough viscosity when hot to produce an adequate oil pressure. If the oil temperature is too hot, the oil oxidizes and breaks-down more quickly.

That’s why you should run a synthetic oil, to give you a safety margin against oil breakdown. A regular oil will begin to lose its film strength at temperatures above 105°C, while most full-synthetic oils can be safely used at temperatures as high as 150°C before lubrication-related damage becomes a concern.

As a rule-of-thumb your oil temperature should be kept below 115ºC if you want to change petroleum-based oil at the recommended intervals. For every ten degrees above 115°C, cut your oil change interval in half.

Race car builders usually design for oil temperatures between 110°C and 127°C in order to get the best power. Above that range, engine reliability and oil life becomes a factor in racing.
 
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