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August 17th, 2009, 03:49 AM   #1
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I Ride: 2012 FE 570, 2004 950 Adventure, 99 YZF 400, 1982 FXR Harley Davidson
FE 400 issue's a little help would be great

Hi Guys,
Well as I await the last of my bits to arrive from O/S for the 550 I've undertaken assisting a mate with much needed service work on his 2002 FE 400.

It's got 1900K's on it and to say it was visually in mint condition would be an understatement...but visually is where it ends.

The list is long but I have a few serious concerns that I'd like some input on:

a. Very light oil residue in coolant....outer impellor seal....can this be replaced without the case being removed...?

b. Drained the oil of which there was far too much...and it was way too black....and there was no oil screen...surprise..!

c. Set up on the 400 seems to have no magnetic drain plug for the motor oil...now of course this can't be I'm sure...so becuase I a dill I'll be haapy for one in the know to give me the heads up...

Just for entertainment I also found the boot on the rear of the carb wasn't tight...in fact it wasn't even close to making contact with the carb...dusted engine...maybe.....

The things is a prick to start....my 550 fires first kick...and i mean first kick from dead cold....this 400 is crap to start....valve adjustment....probably done along with the last oil change...

Wheel bearings and swing arm bearings and pivot axle seized up pretty good...

Seems the P/Owner rode it with the motard wheels on it...washed it lots but never did a thing saside from that...

Would appreciate some assistance

Cheers

Pilot
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August 17th, 2009, 05:52 AM   #2
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RE: FE 400 issue

Hey Pilot
a. If the WP seal goes it usually lets coolant into the oil not the other way round and it'll also come out the weep hole.
b.No oil screen not good.
c. 02 didn't have a magnet.

If it's been on the dirt with the carb boot off then that's real bad but if only on the road then still bad just not so much.
Valves will almost certainly need doing.
If it was me I'd remove and clean out the carb, take off the rocker covers and check the condition of the decomp, rocker bearings and if all good then put back together and adjust the valves. Do the oil and filter, PUT A SCREEN IN IT, air filter and change coolant.
Also gotta do the other stuff like the wheel bearings of course.
Get it goin and go for a short ride and re-check the coolant/oil (after it cools down of course).
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August 17th, 2009, 06:15 AM   #3
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Re: FE 400 issue's a little help would be great

Originally Posted by 520pilot
Hi Guys,

a. Very light oil residue in coolant....outer impellor seal....can this be replaced without the case being removed...?


Pilot
The head gasket may be getting ready to let go.

With the motor running take the radiator cap off and watch for bubbles in the coolant.
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August 17th, 2009, 02:47 PM   #4
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I Ride: 2012 FE 570, 2004 950 Adventure, 99 YZF 400, 1982 FXR Harley Davidson
RE: Re: FE 400 issue

Hey Guys,
Thanks for the ideas, I've so far done:

wheel bearings and seals...bearings were shot
Swing arm pivot axle was stuck pretty well but got it out and anti seized it...
Cleaned and repacked swing arm bearings and sleeves
Serviced forks
Cleaned carb
Relaced air cleaner foam
Upgraded to beefy starter
Head stem bearings... and so on

The weep hole on the water pump was leaking a very small amount but leaking none the less...so I'm guessing impellor seal....
the valves are next and I'll check the de-comp..(what am I looking for specificly with the de-comp)

When the bike is able to be run I'll check the radiator for bubbles to be sure, but I think the residue is related to the leaky w/p seal maybe not but I'll find that out...

I've run over the owners doc for assistance and it's given me plenty of ideas to look for but all input is welcome...

Cheers

Pilot
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August 18th, 2009, 12:28 AM   #5
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RE: Re: FE 400 issue

Cos you said it's hard to start I'll bet money it's the auto decomp.
The lobe wears down and renders it useless. They have also been known to get stuck etc.
Check that the operation is nice and free and it springs back easily then measure the height of the decomp lobe compared to the cam lobe. A new 1 should be about 1mm or 40 thou.
This will tell you if your gunna have an easy time on the e-starter or not.
Also an 02 that's been neglected and been su-mo'd = rocker bearing failure. CHECK THESE !
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August 18th, 2009, 12:51 AM   #6
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RE: Re: FE 400 issue

Thanks Coastie,
There's something a miss with the decomp ....the movement and actuation feels like crap compared with my 550...it feels like th ecable is going to break when you initially pull it on...then after a few pulls it seems to feel a little better but still not like my 550
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August 18th, 2009, 01:11 AM   #7
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I Ride: 2012 FE 570, 2004 950 Adventure, 99 YZF 400, 1982 FXR Harley Davidson
RE: Re: FE 400 issue

Coastie,
A further heads up afeter reading your post..here's exactly what happens:

pull decomp ...hard as hell
lever seems not to want to move
Push on kickstarter and decomp lever actuates stays halfway on.. doesn't return unitl you can get a full kick or more on the kick starter
I think your on the money

Pilot
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August 18th, 2009, 04:56 AM   #8
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RE: Re: FE 400 issue

I was talkin about the auto decomp. It's in on the cam.
The manual decomp lever is kinda hard to pull on mine as well.
It's just a round rod with a flat bottom section and when you pull the lever it turns and pushes down on the exhaust rocker arm.
When the valves are closed you are pulling against the valve springs.
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August 18th, 2009, 05:59 AM   #9
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RE: Re: FE 400 issue

You MUST get an oil screen otherwise you run the risk of having a stuck oil pump due to shavings in oil and eventually a blown engine. '02 engine have a 12.5mm oil screen.newer designs (after '03) have 15mm oil screen.If you cannot reach old oil screen you can narrow one side of the new oil screen down to 12.5mm and bore the oil drain plug inner diameter to 15mm.newer oil drain plug cannot be used because it has a narrower outer diameter.
If I were you I would check the oil pump by removing valve cover(you should remove the cover also for inspecting your valve train) and check if there is oil blowing from the oil feed hole to the valve cover on the face of the valve head(hole with a tiny o-ring on it) while cranking the engine.of course before you drain your oil

mine had no oil screen when I buy it and the oil pump was stuck.if you want to know what this situation leads, you can find my post namely "blown FE400"
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