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Re: is 600 miles of break-in really necessary?

You are going to find that people fall into 2 camps on this one.

The everything is seated after 50 miles group, and the baby it for 2000 miles lot.

I think that break-in procedures for motorcycles aren't written by engineers anymore, but by lawyers.
 

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Used to the bike time

The lawyer thing might be on the right track. Maybe they want a full 600 miles so that you have time to get used to the bike before hammering it so you are not as likely to lose it.
 

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Re: is 600 miles of break-in really necessary?

I think the real question is why are you asking, Matt? Are you getting a bit anxious with the new ride?

Simply speaking; follow the manufacturers break-in schedule as best you can and you should be OK. I've done this on a bunch of different bikes and have put big miles on my bikes with no problems so far. (No excess oil burning, no leaking valves or rings, etc.)

Understand, "...as best you can..." means just that. Once the first 50 miles are out of the way I have broken in all my bikes the same way. I take a weekend trip to Hot Springs, Arkansas from Oklahoma City by way of the back roads. That's a little over 600 mi roundtrip. I stay off the interstate entirely on the way there so the speeds are below 65 mph and the little towns keep me from riding at a set speed for very long. The way back I usually hit the highway for the last 100 mi blast home and the only thing I don't do is rev to the redline.
 

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Re: Break in fast, run fast.

The 600 mile service is important to make sure everything is seated correctly, but I run my bikes up through the gears as soon and as often as possible.

I don't mean drag racing but you want to get the rpm's up so the rings seat in, otherwise you'll have a slug for a bike.

The big thing thing at the first service is to change the oil and filter and check the valves. The rest is just basic maintainance like adjusting the chain and tightening nuts and bolts.

I take it in to have the first service done in case I have a warranty claim later, it strengthens your case. After that I do my own maintainance and save the reciepts.
 

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Re: is 600 miles of break-in really necessary?

I don't think that there is a simple yes or no answer to this question, as it depends on the type of motorcycle and what is actually recomended by the manufacturer.

I have broken in quite a few new bikes with good results. I tend to follow the manufacturer's instructions but vary them somewhat

I've been told that you want to think of the break in period more in terms of HEAT CYCLES rather than in terms of actual miles ridden.

Vary the enging speed often with periods of acceleration followed by periods of deceleration to flush the cylinder walls.

Do not ride the highway at a constant speed for a long time

Stay somewhat within the recommended RPM range.

Don't be too easy on the the motor or keep the RPM's too low.
 

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Re: Break in fast, run fast.

As much as I know, from all I have read and learned from engine builders and mechanics, high manifold pressure is key to breaking in an engine, to allow the rings to seat properly.

This means that you should look for large throttle opening on acceleration and closed throttle on deceleration. The manifold pressure presses the rings against the cylinder bores, allowing them to wear in accordance with the exact shape of the bore, allowing a perfect seal.

Note that large throttle openings DO NOT equate to high RPMs!!! The higher you rev the engine early in its life, the quicker you'll wear out the rings and the bore imperfection, which would prevent you from "breaking them in" the best possible way.

The MototuneUSA article pretty much sums it all: low RPM, high throttle for the first 50-80 miles, and then progressively stretch the RPM band. Avoid prolonged high RPMs for the first few hundred miles. And change your oil after 80 miles or so.

Best of luck!

Claude
 

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The Toad
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Re: is 600 miles of break-in really necessary?

And to make sure your warranty doesn't get voided.

I've followed break-in on several bikes. Basically, no full throttle, running up and down the gears, varying speeds, etc. First oil change is important. After that... go for broke. All the bikes have performed well and reliably. I see no reason not to follow the manufacturer's recommendations.
 

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Re: is 600 miles of break-in really necessary?

This procedure seems like a great way to make sure that your rings never get seated properly. In order for the rings to get seated, they have to be pushed outwards by high cylinder pressure, and you just don't get that with low throttle openings. Maybe this article is just BMW R-series, specific, but if you do this to a modern motorcycle engine, you'll end up with a low-power, leaky-ring engine that uses tons of oil (wait, isn't that all BMWs? :).

Motorcycle engines don't need to be babied. A recent issue of Bike magazine (from UK) has an engine destruction test - they ran a Kawasaki ZX-6R engine at redline for a long time with no coolant and with just 1qt of oil. They managed to burn out and blow up the exhaust and pretty much set the bike on fire, but the engine never seized and after cooling down (and topping it up with oil and water) it ran fine.

I would rather trust the recommendations of this guy:

http://www.mototuneusa.com/break_in_secrets.htm. He at least has seen the engine internals from many engines broken-in according to various procedures, and his writing seems much more informed than that of the BMW guy.

-Gniewko
 

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The Toad
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
You just can't resist...

....summoning up the demon from the pit, can you?
 

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I've never had a new street bike, but I've had 6 new motocross bikes and all I've ever done is start initially for 10 minutes and then let cool, then ride normally for about 20 minutes, let cool and then consider the bike "broken in". I've never had any problems with any of the bikes and I've done then same with each of them......
 

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Super Duper Mod Man
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Re: You just can't resist...

How about we try being bored. I'm up for it. Betting the farm he isn't going anywhere. Seruzawa is gonna owe me a beer on that one.
 

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Common-knowledge says that left over slivers, chunks, and grit are left in the engine from it's original mfr and the break in oil allows for collection of that crud. Perhaps even the break-in oil is slightly different than standard oil with extra lube and junk to ease this process.



Further, in most freshly built engines I've known, parts need to "match" each other for smoothest, leak-free running. This match takes a little time, and 600mi is probably a reasonable for any daily-use vehicle.



(racers will bang-em in and run, but they live with motors that are rebuilt every 3 races or so).



Besides, if it slips out that you beat it badly during break-in, I'd walk away from you if I were a dealer about to provide service.



Do what the mfr says, and if it chokes, the *mfr* is responsible for remedying the situation. Why mess with that deal?



Chris
 
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