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stuartb3502

Removing oil pan/sump - any tips?

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So - I'm approaching the end of getting my 5th gen back on the road.  Today I thought I'd tackle the easiest and last essential job before getting an MOT/certificate (having so far derusted the tank, replaced fuel pump assembly, fuel sender, fuel supply hose, seals on slave cylinder, bled the clutch and brakes, cleaned brakes, repaint bits, flushed the coolant etc etc).   

 

Oil change! - easy - done it before, nothing to it.  Except that my drain bolt sheared whilst trying to remove it.  I had fitted a magnetic one at the last oil change and it seems that these are prone to failing.

 

So after consulting the 'Net, I think about using a bolt extractor to get the remnants out...  Offer up my centre punch by hand and the rest of the bolt disappears INSIDE the oil pan/sump with just finger pressure.

 

Now, I don't know what kind of repair I'm in for as I'll need to check the drain hole threads in due course. 

 

But first I need to get the pan off, and retrieve the rest of the drain bolt.  

 

The service manual says exhaust off to do this.  So, my question is whether anyone has done this without taking the exhaust off - wondering whether it may be possible to wiggle it off.

 

It's not completely the end of the world if I have to take the exhaust off as that was on my list anyway.  I have a plain steel ('99) exhaust which I need to either repaint or get ceramic coated.

 

Welcome any suggestions at this point as it feels like one of those days right now.

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I can't help you with the pan, but  I have an idea for a good repair. I'd pull it off, then drill/tap to 14mm (stock is 12mm) and then permanently epoxy a 14mm Fumoto valve into place to avoid stress on the diminished thread boss. 

 

Edit: this is assuming the pan threads are wrecked... 

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Have a fish with a magnet on a flexible stick or a piece of bent wire & see if you can get the offending item to the hole, you may be able to squeeze it or bend it out of shape to fit through the hole . 

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Thanks both. Will give fishing a try, but a bit worried I may not get everything. Need to get a 27mm socket tomorrow (for footresrt hanger) before I can attempt removing exhaust anyway. 

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Unfortunately you will have to take off the exhaust. Once you undue all of the bolts from the sump you have to drop the pan by 3-4 inches to get it past the oil pick up. If you don’t fancy repairing your sump you can pick them up off eBay pretty cheaply.

 

good luck.

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Thanks.  In the process of removing exhaust now.  Stuck on the rear downpipe to collector joints.  Waiting to see if release oil of any help.  If anyone knows tricks to get those apart I'm all ears.  Not much space to apply any leverage.  

 

Fingers crossed that the oil pan is not actually damaged - we'll see.  There are a handful of sumps on ebay UK at the moment so as soon as I get this off I can figure out next steps.

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On 9/30/2019 at 3:05 PM, stuartb3502 said:

So - I'm approaching the end of getting my 5th gen back on the road.  Today I thought I'd tackle the easiest and last essential job before getting an MOT/certificate (having so far derusted the tank, replaced fuel pump assembly, fuel sender, fuel supply hose, seals on slave cylinder, bled the clutch and brakes, cleaned brakes, repaint bits, flushed the coolant etc etc).   

 

Oil change! - easy - done it before, nothing to it.  Except that my drain bolt sheared whilst trying to remove it.  I had fitted a magnetic one at the last oil change and it seems that these are prone to failing.

 

So after consulting the 'Net, I think about using a bolt extractor to get the remnants out...  Offer up my centre punch by hand and the rest of the bolt disappears INSIDE the oil pan/sump with just finger pressure.

 

Now, I don't know what kind of repair I'm in for as I'll need to check the drain hole threads in due course. 

 

But first I need to get the pan off, and retrieve the rest of the drain bolt.  

 

The service manual says exhaust off to do this.  So, my question is whether anyone has done this without taking the exhaust off - wondering whether it may be possible to wiggle it off.

 

It's not completely the end of the world if I have to take the exhaust off as that was on my list anyway.  I have a plain steel ('99) exhaust which I need to either repaint or get ceramic coated.

 

Welcome any suggestions at this point as it feels like one of those days right now.

What a stupid problem to deal with - plus the stupid amount of extra work!

 

I have a magnetic bolt in my VFR (bolt bought in UK via eBay) - I would really want to avoid a repeat of your experience. Do you know why it sheared - quality, torqued to much, age etc.

 

As I recall my bolt has a pretty thin wall at least some way down the bolt - I already have nightmares as time for oil change is soon coming up!

 

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2 hours ago, RC36B said:

What a stupid problem to deal with - plus the stupid amount of extra work!

Tell me about it!

 

Mine was from Wemoto (I think), but seems to be the type commonly seen everywhere.  It was installed 9 years and ~8k miles ago.  Torque-wise?  I torqued it correctly.  I had a valve clearance check service done elsewhere a bit later so don't know whether it was over-torqued then.  I did have other issues with the person who did the work (steering head bearings replaced and came loose!) so anything's possible.

 

The Youtube video I found looked like a very similar bolt and failure.  It did look like on that that it failed where the bolt is hollow.  Until I get the other piece out I'm not sure.  I don't know at this stage how the other part went inside the pan.  I didn't spot any corrosion, but will need to have a closer look.  Suggest spraying some penetrating oil on yours before next oil change as a precaution and take it steady - hopefully you won't have any issues.

 

Leaving mine overnight soaked in Plusgas at the moment.  I seem to have a little movement on the rear pipes connection to the collector so hopefully it will come off eventually.  As well fixing the issue at hand, I need to think about what to do with the exhaust since it's coming off (and I won't want to be doing this again in a hurry!). 

 

Weighing up a DIY VHT paint job vs ceramic coating or stainless replacement.  Big difference in cost obviously, but I'm intending to keep the bike so want something that I can hopefully forget about fro a long time (it will have a relatively easy life (no winter road salt etc) from here out).

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35 minutes ago, stuartb3502 said:

Suggest spraying some penetrating oil on yours before next oil change as a precaution and take it steady - hopefully you won't have any issues.

Thanks - hopefully no problems here!

I now know who would be the go-to-guy with plenty of expertise - so make sure to leave your phone number 🙂 

 

Hope you get it sorted with no more surprises!

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If I'd done what the Original Poster described (in his original post) I wouldn't want to remove the sump if I could avoid it.  I'd also be concerned about the condition of the drain bolt threading in the sump.  Here's a possible course of action:

- Find and purchase a properly sized thread replacement (Helicoil or Permacoil or Timesert or whatever type you decide is best for an oil sump)

- All of these thread replacement methods have you drill out, to a slightly larger size, the original thread-hole so it can be re-tapped to accept the thread replacement insert

- So after doing the drilling out part of the work to prepare the oil sump's original thread-hole for the insert, you pause to use a magnet to fish out the broken drain bolt piece

- Then continue with the process of installing the thread replacement insert

- There's information available on the web about how to control or catch the shavings or bits of oil sump that might be generated during the work

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2 hours ago, GreginDenver said:

If I'd done what the Original Poster described (in his original post) I wouldn't want to remove the sump if I could avoid it.  I'd also be concerned about the condition of the drain bolt threading in the sump.  Here's a possible course of action:

Good idea to drill the bigger hole and then fish out the other pieces (I didn’t have any luck with the existing M12 hole because I think the piece of bolt still has the magnet in it).

 

Bigger issue for me is that drilling and tapping an M14 hole accurately with the pan in place is way beyond me. I could possibly get in a mobile thread repair service, but I’m not sure anyone would take that on and I’d also forever worry I’d left bits of bolt inside.  

 

So, it’s a bigger job, but once the exhaust is off, hopefully quite straightforward and I’ll know for sure everything is right afterwards. I may end up getting a thread repair, but I can take the pan somewhere (assuming I don’t buy a secondhand one). I was going to tackle the exhaust at some point anyway, so I’ll just see this as an opportunity :-).

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4 hours ago, RC36B said:

Thanks - hopefully no problems here!

I now know who would be the go-to-guy with plenty of expertise - so make sure to leave your phone number 🙂 

 

Hope you get it sorted with no more surprises!

Well if accumulating problems doing simple jobs and then having to find solutions qualifies me, I’m your man! Or you may wish to find someone who gets it right from the start 🙂

 

I’m certainly learning a lot more about the bike than I expected at the moment. Happy to know things will be done right in the end even if it takes me ages.

 

When I bled the brakes, I found that someone had applied copper anti seize rather than threadlock to the ALOC caliper mounting bolts....which was nice.

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7 hours ago, GreginDenver said:

If I'd done what the Original Poster described (in his original post) I wouldn't want to remove the sump if I could avoid it.  I'd also be concerned about the condition of the drain bolt threading in the sump.  Here's a possible course of action:

- Find and purchase a properly sized thread replacement (Helicoil or Permacoil or Timesert or whatever type you decide is best for an oil sump)

- All of these thread replacement methods have you drill out, to a slightly larger size, the original thread-hole so it can be re-tapped to accept the thread replacement insert

- So after doing the drilling out part of the work to prepare the oil sump's original thread-hole for the insert, you pause to use a magnet to fish out the broken drain bolt piece

- Then continue with the process of installing the thread replacement insert

- There's information available on the web about how to control or catch the shavings or bits of oil sump that might be generated during the work

what the heckl ?? just go the next size up forget the helicoil crap.. use bearing grease on the threads of the tap to trap the shavings...  pull the clutch cover to fish out any crap..

 

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15 hours ago, stuartb3502 said:

When I bled the brakes, I found that someone had applied copper anti seize rather than threadlock to the ALOC caliper mounting bolts....which was nice.

The story of old bikes - their is always the odd job someone did that went unnoticed for years. Well, always look at the bright side of life - no chance those flange bolts sheared 🙂 and all calipers accounted for I assume

 

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On my '89 LeMans, changing the oil filter meant dropping the pan....

1st time round, one of the allen bolts simply stripped inside the head. On a new bike!

Withthe quality of Italian metal it is no surprise they lost the war.... :tongue:

A pal helped out by welding/tacking an allen key on.   And I bought proper bolts and used a torque wrench

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12 hours ago, gll429 said:

what the heckl ?? just go the next size up forget the helicoil crap.. use bearing grease on the threads of the tap to trap the shavings...  pull the clutch cover to fish out any crap..

 

Whoah - wait a second?  If I pull the clutch cover can I reach the oil pan or is the oil pickup and other stuff going to be in teh way?  If so, I could get the bit of drain bolt out without dropping the pan.  

Thanks

Stuart

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So headers are off.  Anyone got any good methods of removing the oil pan since it's "glued" on with mastic?  I'm doing taps with rubber mallet, but it's going to need some downward force.  Thinking about leverage on the two tabs which stick out from the pan, but don't know how much abuse they can take.  Service manual is silent on this.

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3 hours ago, stuartb3502 said:

So headers are off.  Anyone got any good methods of removing the oil pan since it's "glued" on with mastic?  I'm doing taps with rubber mallet, but it's going to need some downward force.  Thinking about leverage on the two tabs which stick out from the pan, but don't know how much abuse they can take.  Service manual is silent on this.

It appears that (according to page 4-6 of the 1998-2001 Honda VFR800fi Service Manual) the Honda-factory-applied "mastic" you're dealing with is Three Bond 1207B which is really just garden-variety RTV Silicone (RTV = room temperature vulcanized).

 

I don't know if I need to mention this but heat is always your friend when you're trying to remove things with tightly seized surfaces.

 

It might take a while to gently heat up that big piece of aluminum (the entire oil pan) but it might do the trick of making the substance in the joint-line a bit more workable.

 

 

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3 hours ago, stuartb3502 said:

So headers are off.  Anyone got any good methods of removing the oil pan since it's "glued" on with mastic?  I'm doing taps with rubber mallet, but it's going to need some downward force.  Thinking about leverage on the two tabs which stick out from the pan, but don't know how much abuse they can take.  Service manual is silent on this.

Under the heading of "This works for me, your mileage may vary..."

 

I have an improvised technique that I've used for years on things like this (oil pans, clutch covers, stator covers, and anything else that's stuck tight to the bike due to old gaskets).  I've got a couple of small "slide hammers" that I use to gently free items like these from the bike (I think one came from Harbor Freight and the other is from a bicycle shop years ago back in my mountain biking days).  In every case the manufacturer has provided little tabs of metal around the perimeter of the oil pan or cover that I'm working on.  Both of my slide hammers have a threaded insert at the end and I've installed a wide-crowned bolt into that end, onto this bolt I've pressed a soft aluminum crush washer to insure that I don't cause any damage to the cover tabs.  I hook the the edge of the bolt+washer over one of the cover's tabs and give the slide hammer a couple of pulls then I move to the next tab, and so on, even if there's no perceivable movement, I just keep going gently around the tabs until something gives.  Eventually this action frees the cover from the bike.

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You can definitely fish around in the open clutch cover into the sump; I know because I managed to drop one of the metal dowels from the cover into the open case when I changed my clutch plates. I fished that one out with a magnet.

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Heat definitely helps with this sort of thing. I've been known to fully lose my temper with a rubber mallet on similar things (a certain auto transmission comes to mind) which ironically turned out to be just the ticket.

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Thamks again for the tips. I think they will prove useful to others as well. I used the rubber handle of a hammer as a drift with my mallet and tapped on all the corners of the pan. Off it came. Actually very little of the mastic keeping it on.

 

So what had happened is that the drain hole theads have definitely been damaged meaning that the bolt bound up as I undid it.that caused it to fail where it is hollow (above the magnet). The bit of bolt is still threaded in the hole and the magnet was in the pan (hence the oil pouring out).  Pics show the hole with bit of bolt in place from inside the pan and the remnants of the bolt. Have to say I won’t risk magnetic bolt again unless perhaps there are some more solidly engineered variants out there.

 

I’m taking it to a thread repair guy to see what he can do. Otherwise there’s a secondhand one I’ll buy.  

 

Good news is that headers look in reasonable shape. Just need to get the rear downpipes off so I can paint or whatever. Ceramic coating quoted about the same as Lextek stainless headers so need to weigh that up.

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Yeah - looks like mine... bummer!

 

Have you torqued this by feel or with a torque wrench?

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19 hours ago, RC36B said:

Yeah - looks like mine... bummer!

 

Have you torqued this by feel or with a torque wrench?

 

Hi - in truth, I'm not sure.  The last two oil changes were carried out by shops.  

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