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How have you/would you break in a new bike? Would you do it that way again and why?

This question was suggested by riverrunner_2000 (Kyle). Thanks for a great suggestion!

My dealer told me not to run my bike up consistently above 6000 rpm for the first 600 miles, until after my first oil change. I was very good and followed this suggestion closely even though it was hard to ride that way and not nearly enough fun! :)

I'm always really good about breaking in new vehicles as I'm very hard on them. I don't know if it truly helps or not, but I've never had any sort of engine troubles with bikes or cars, so I'll tell myself it's not fun, but maybe it works.


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Stacia - '00 CBR F4
"Objects in mirror no longer matter!"
 

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I just followed what the dealer told me, which was the same as the manual. Ducati bikes are always "different", but some general rules of thumb are always there. For the first 600 miles I was supposed to keep it under 5000 rpm, trying to stay under 4000. THIS was HARD! I was also supposed to vary the RPMs and work through the gears, so it never rode for a period of time at one speed. This was very easy as most of my driving was in city traffic in Phoenix. Get up to 60 mph in the flow and there is a traffic light at 1 mile intervals (and they are never "timed").

There is also the general "go easy on everthing". I also am one to follow the rules rather closely, so I don't know what happens if you don't, but I have heard that if you are rough on brakes as they are breaking in, that they will wear out really fast.


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- Dan
'99 Ducati 900SS



[This message has been edited by Mattrazzo (edited January 31, 2000).]
 

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I was told to not tak it over 50% of redline (6500 rpm on the F2, the 400 was well beat when I bought it) and no full throttle accelleration or highway riding. I did this for 600 miles. I had the dealer do first service at about 700 miles due to the wait to get in. Until it hit the 1000 mile mark it didn't go above 9000. After that, I took it on a long stretch of road and ran it through three gears. Came back about 15 minutes later and started in second gear and ran it through, turned around repeated the process (to seat the rings and such). I rode it to 1500 miles, dumped the oil and switched to Motul Semi-synthetic at that point. The bike with no jet kit dynoed 8hp shine of an F2 w/ polished/ported head, cams, 618cc pistons and a few other tricks at 80.5hp (only 5 off most mags, except Cycle that rated it at 79.9).

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Tony

94 CBR600F2 streetbike
88 FZR400 trackbike
e-mail:[email protected]
 

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Tony, You say "ran it through three gears. Came back about 15 minutes later and started in second gear and ran it through, turned around repeated the process (to seat the rings and such)

Im sorry but I dont quite understand this part. Do you mean you run it hard up through 1,2,3 gear from stop and let it rest for 15 minutes?
Then, you start from a stop in 2nd gear and run it through 3,4,5,6 hard?


I was only told by the dealer "dont take it over 10k for 600 miles" redline is 11k! Knowing that was B.S., I have been fuctuating the r.p.m. under 4k. I have however run it up to 110mph [apx.7200] once (it was an accident) and been to 6k a couple of times prior to 100miles... think I caused damage?

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Kyle-
99 Yellow 900RR
email:[email protected]




[This message has been edited by riverrunner_2000 (edited January 31, 2000).]
 

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I don't think we are talking about rocket science here. If you just go easy on it, you'll be fine. As for brakes, don't give them a big handful for the first 75 times you use them. 75 may sound like a bunch, but this really only takes an hour or so. If you abuse them in the first few miles it won't lessen the life of them. What it will do is make them less effective. Essentailly it will smear the surface of the pad and reduce the available friction.
 

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I'm not so sure about Honda's, but if it's not in your owners manual, then they might do like BMW and break in the motor before the bike leaves the factory. Also about the RPM's you were running, the point of break in has nothing to do with avoiding damaging anything, it is to properly seat all the motor parts together for added longevity. In other words, theoretically, the closer you follow the break-in recommendations the longer your bike will last. Of course if you are like most people I know and only keep a bike for 20,000-30,000 miles, don't worry about it, it will be the next owners problem. Just kidding, be kind break it in according to recommendations, the engineers put the break-in specs there for a reason.

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Colin
2000 Triumph Speed Triple
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Colin, all the Honda owners manual says is: No hard starts or full throttle accelerations. ~Leaves alot to be desired



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Kyle-
99 Yellow 900RR
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I've broken in Hondas, Kaws, & a Suzuki. I feel as long as you take it easy for 600 miles (under 6k rpm), 15-20 minutes at a time (don't be afraid to give it lots of throttle when warmed up, but stay under 6k rpm). Vary the rpm constantly. The heat/cooling cycles are important, as is pressure on the rings to help them seat.
I then kept under 10k rpm for the next 400 mi. or so. Same everything else.
After 1000 mi, you should be OK, but still very rpm some. I've noticed that even after 6000 mi, the engine is still developing sweet spots at the rpm most used (maybe that's why all my bikes' engines absolutely did not like 55mph :D ).
In most cases, I felt the break in wasn't finished until about 15k miles. That was the point where gas mileage stopped rising and the motor finished smoothing out.
Don't forget the higher rpm range once in a while either.
I'd follow the other's advice on gentle braking, also gentle clutch. I generally wait until after 6000 mi before using any kind of synthetic. I personally use semi-synthetic.

[This message has been edited by Keith B (edited January 31, 2000).]
 

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I think both Dan and Keith have pretty much summed up what I know about breaking in motors etc. I haven't broken in a new bike, but I have broken in a fully rebuilt bike motor, and car motor, and brake discs, and bike clutch, and car clutch.

What I was told by the mechanics, and engine rebuilders was keep the RPM under xxx (about half of redline) for the first 500km (300mi), varying the revs as much as possible (sit at one speed for 5 mins, then change it, and repeat). Then for the next 500km, keep it under 60-65% of redline. This give you a little bit more rev range to vary over. It doesn't mean keep it between 50 and 60%!
Get the dealer service done at 1000km (600mi).
Then take it easy (no hard acceleration or engine braking) for the next 500km, but can use up to 85-90% of rev range, and don't have to vary revs. After that - the motors all broke in.

As far as brakes and clutch go - Take it easy - no big fist fulls of anything. They are similar in that they have to be "bedded in". You can stuff your discs if you don't go easy on your brakes for the first 500km! Nice gentle stops, gradually increase the pressure you use. Don't forget the rear!! The clutch is the same - just be gentle (you should be if you're trying to be gentle with the motor)

BTW thanks for the tip on not using synthetics straight away. Some great info here as I'm hoping to buy new soon.

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"It's all fun and games until someone scratches your bike!"

Mark [email protected]
'81 Z1100
 

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I use full synthetic in my engine. I don't think you would have to quite wait until 6K miles before using but you definitely want to wait until the motor is broken in since synthetics actually decrease engine wear and, of course, wear is what you want during break in. Anyone else in here use Mobil 1 XR4T? Does anyone in here use Elf? I hear it's really good and actually easier to obtain than Mobil.
 

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Kyle,

First of all, congrats on the new 900RR, I think you'll be happy.

The fifteen minute wait is a very long story and not important to breaking the bike in. I just threw it in there because thinking about breaking the bike in reminded me of why I shouldn't do stupid things on the street. What is important is that it was a series of runs that allowed the motor to run under load.

One thing I should have clarified earlier, I did this on the street because dyno access wasn't an option. I would have rather had it done on a dyno than on the street (not just for the safety reasons, but also the fact that the motor can be better loaded).

I didn't run the bike through gears 4,5,6 because the speed involved wouldn't have been safe for the area I doing this in. Plus the time that you'd have to run the bike in 4th, 5th, and 6th gear to get to redline wouldn't be good on a fresh motor (imo). The idea here is slowing loading the motor, not abuse.

This is my way of trying to repeat a process from an old magazine article where Rob Muzzy said that they try to get three hard pulls out of the motor after they break them in. Of course, three hard pulls are done on a dyno and likely in 4th gear (article didn't specify a gear).

The last time I did this was with my car (and you can feel the motor run better as you load it to redline). Each pull gets stronger.

Basically, you combine two ways of thinking into one break-in procedure. The first is baby it and it'll run forever. The second is break it in slow and it'll be slow.

Both are based in some fact. Basically you're breaking it in slow so it'll wear down excess metal, then running it hard when the metal is done flowing through your motor get the motor to start seating (poor choice of words here, I'm not that mechanically inclined) together.

I do suggest an oil change between the two parts, and not synthetic oil yet. Do the sythetic (or semi-synthetic) on the second change.

I hope this clarifies the earlier post a little bit.

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Tony

94 CBR600F2 streetbike
88 FZR400 trackbike
e-mail:[email protected]
 

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Guys, and gals,

wow, I didnt know that you shouldnt use synthetic right away. I put Motul in my F4 at 600 miles. Tonys' post explained alot about why some people say take it easy, and some say HIT IT! I know a good friend of mine will build a motor for his 1/4 mile Vega (UGLY but F*&king fast!) As soon as it warms up, he hits the throttle to the stopper 3-4 times ~if it idles smooth after that, its a good motor! lol I agree with a little of each with an oil change in the middle.
 

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With a Triumph you void your warranty if you don't use at least simi-synthetic. So I don't know so much about waiting to use synthetics.

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Colin
2000 Triumph Speed Triple
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Kyle,

Just a point on your friends motor for his 1/4 mile Vega.

All motors for cars/bikes in this sport are normally stripped down and rebuilt between every race, sometimes partially between runs as well. What you need to know is that the motors are put together LOOSE. This is why they don't need to run them in. When you tighten the head on your car and it says 42ftlb, a race motor will only go to 30ftlb (Don't give me hell about these figures, I just plucked 'em out of the air for an eg)
This is so they can start them up and run them to redline, and pull 10s on the track, right after a full rebuild.

New motors are TIGHT, which is why the run-in.
 

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Just a comment on oils. It probably depends on the engine. Ducati uses synthetic from day one.

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- Dan
'99 Ducati 900SS
 

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The not using synthetic oil thing is kind of old school. Many people do use synthetic from day one and they're a-okay.

If your bike comes with Motul full synth, just stick with the Motul, don't switch. Same thing w/ spectro, redline, Mobil1, etc.

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Tony

94 CBR600F2 streetbike
88 FZR400 trackbike
e-mail:[email protected]


[This message has been edited by cbrf2boy (edited February 02, 2000).]
 

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Good point Kwaka_man.
I want to go with Redline synthetic because I hear it makes the tranny and clutch really smooth, any comments on that? I just talked to Craig Erion, the owner of Two Bros. and he said my bike was broken in at 200 miles. Everyone has diffent theories on the issue, and they're all valid! IM SO confused!! lol. So far, Im taking it all in, (the advise) filtering, and using common sense.

My conclusion is: Ride it, be nice for awhile, and take care of it. I dont know why I worry anyway, it will run forever! It's a Honda! ;)

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Kyle-
99 Yellow 900RR
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Exactly right, I have never known anyone who had a Honda fail on them. Ride On!!

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Colin
2000 Triumph Speed Triple
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A good point that I was told about breaking in a new engine is to do it in the early spring when the air temps are cooler.Or just to do your riding when the temp cools off.That means no stop-n-go traffic in the middle of the afternoon.A new engine will run a little hotter until everything loosens up and the break-in period is over.later...... -------------------------------------------- 98TLR Langley,BC "Better Predator Than Prey"

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