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January 9th, 2012, 03:43 PM   #1
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550 FE - Oil Change - Seize - HELP!!!!

Hello All.

Im a newbee, this is my first post – unfortunately its not a good one, and fairly long.

I have an FE550, 27 hours, 800miles, ive had the bike 3 months and believe before I owned it is was regularly service and well looked after. It came with spare oil, oil filter etc.

I am a competent home mechanic with friends in the trade, and have always service cars and bikes, rebuilt engines, diesels head gaskets etc…. Anyway tonight was set aside to change the oil and filter on the berg.

Old oil drained out by leaning the bike over, filter removed, no nasty surprises although there was some filings on the magnetic filter. Everything cleaned, sump plug back in, half filled the filter housing with oil, fitted filter. Poured in 1L of 5W50 with the bike upright. Oil level glass full. Ignition off, turned the bike over 5 times or so to get some oil around.

The berg fired first time and ran on tickover for maybe 30 seconds then cut out. It then turned over twice but wouldn’t start. At this point the starter stopped being able to turn the bike over and just ‘clicked’. I feared for the worse so attempted a kick. Seized solid!!!! Tried to rock the bike in 2nd,3rd, 4th, 5th, all solid.

At this point I removed the spark plug, still not able to move anything.
I then removed the stator cover and stator, poured some oil down the plug hole and used a socket and large driver, with some force the engine would turn over. It managed 2 revolutions before becoming tight again. There was a scoring noise as oil got around but it seemed to improve. At this point I could turn 5 or 6 complete revolutions before it became very tight, with scoring noise, it would turn easily 5 or 6 anticlockwise before the same thing happened.

Figuring I didn’t have much to lose it cranked it over further by hand, this seemed to free it up – stopped all the scoring noise so I completed 70 revolutions by hand. The engine was now turning over freely. Stator back on. Plug still removed – and the bike would kick over – I turned it over on the kick start 20 times and everything moved freely. In with the plug, couple of kicks, then fired it on the button. It started second time around, ran for 30 seconds then seized again. Back to square one.

So…..does anyone have any idea what could have happened, the 5 to 6 revolutions is confusing me, why would it be tight/grind on the 5-6th, but free up until that point.

My first though was seized top end, but im now thinking maybe a main bearing???

I plan to investigate further tomorrow evening and with start the strip down. Any ideas, thoughts or suggestions anyone has would be gratefully received.

Thank you in advance
Rob.
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January 9th, 2012, 04:52 PM   #2
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Re: 550 FE - Oil Change - Seize - HELP!!!!

Very strange Rob.
I'm wondering if you had something floating around in the clutch cover. Perhaps when you leaned the bike over it may have got loose and into the starter/primary gears.
If it were me I would pull the clutch covers off and have a look around. I think what happened is more coincidental to the oil change then actually being caused by it. I would think it would run longer than 30 seconds with no oil in it.
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January 9th, 2012, 09:04 PM   #3
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Re: 550 FE - Oil Change - Seize - HELP!!!!

Originally Posted by rmcoxx
filter removed,
could you have possibly installed the filter backwards/wrong?
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January 9th, 2012, 10:56 PM   #4
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Re: 550 FE - Oil Change - Seize - HELP!!!!

Too much oil maybe? how much did you put in ? should be level with bottom of sight glass cold.
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January 9th, 2012, 11:05 PM   #5
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Re: 550 FE - Oil Change - Seize - HELP!!!!

Hi thanks for the replies.

The filter went back in as the old one came out. I've checked and double checked everything I did when things started to go wrong. And the pulled the filter out afterwards to makes sure oil was getting around. The filter was drenched in oil.

As per 'berger' I'm wondering if in leaning the bike over to drain the oil out, something metallic and swarf like got where it shouldn't have got. Causing something to jam?

The thing that's confusing me is the 5 free full rotations each way before becoming 'grindy' again. Could it be bearings moving in each way in a broken housing.

Either way further investigation is needed, if i pull the clutch out will I be able to see anything more useful?
I was planning on starting at the top end and working back until I find something broken. Would it be better to drop the engine out or can investigation work start with it still in the frame.

Also is there a workshop manual online/on the forum for the 550? I feel i will be spending lots of evenings reading it.

I was hoping my first major mechanical incident of 2012 wouldn't be in the 2nd week!!man

Thanks for the replies, the forum was a great help when choosing which bike to buy, and im sure it will be even more helpful with my latest man vs machine challenge.

Rob.
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January 10th, 2012, 06:03 AM   #6
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Re: 550 FE - Oil Change - Seize - HELP!!!!

Originally Posted by rmcoxx
Also is there a workshop manual online/on the forum for the 550? I feel i will be spending lots of evenings reading it.
You can download the 05~07 repair manual from Husaberg's site.
Look at model year 2008..
http://www.husaberg.com/Downloads.33.8.html
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January 10th, 2012, 06:41 AM   #7
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Re: 550 FE - Oil Change - Seize - HELP!!!!

If you pull the clutch covers off you will be able to see quite a bit. You should be able to rotate the motor with the covers off and hopefully see what is binding.
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January 10th, 2012, 11:24 PM   #8
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Re: 550 FE - Oil Change - Seize - HELP!!!!

Originally Posted by rmcoxx
It started second time around, ran for 30 seconds then seized again.
just to make sure......
when it 'seizes' it isnt that its getting vapor lock from too much gas [like a float stuck open]?
it will be hard to turn with the sparkplug removed right? i think the answer is yes i'm just making sure.

im just wondering if its binding up and then the scaping noise you hear is 'normal' ?

did you have a look at the cam/rockers to amke sure thats all opening properly?

i feel your pain.
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January 11th, 2012, 01:33 AM   #9
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Re: 550 FE - Oil Change - Seize - HELP!!!!

Hi again,

Its cant be hydraulically full, the spark plug has been out since it started to go wrong. The scraping is not normal - its a horrible metal on metal - snapped tooth/broken bearing noise. (I think)

So...........
Last night I dropped the oil, coolant. Removed water pump (which I broke getting off), off with the clutch side engine casing.

Everything that side looks free and easy. No cogs/bearings broken, nothing binding, no metal chips/shavings anywhere.

So I removed the rocker cover, all valves, springs fine, cam lobes smooth. The cam chains tension doesn’t really change when turning it over which leads me to believe the top end is fine.

The piston moves freely on the mid stroke. No scoring noises or sticking.

Cranking the engine over by hand, it moves freely for 2 revolutions (when it opens the valves it obviously gets tougher). It then gets very difficult to crack and feels to be binding or in fact chewing something up.

With force you can move it past this point, and then it will turn freely for maybe 2 – 2.5 turns before becoming tough again. This happens the same both ways. The 2-2.5 seems to changes each time i.e. its not always stiff at the same point.

I fear that a main bearing has broken up, or I’ve lost a tooth somewhere. This may be what is stopping rotating.
Whilst cranking you can feel that something is grinding or breaking bits up.

To investigate further the engine will need to be split the engine open. Mid West racing is only 30 mins away from me – my worry is it could end up being a horrendous repair bill for something I could do myself.

Has anybody had to replace the main bearings? Any ideas of approx cost?

Is the main bearing a weak spot on these bikes – 2008 engine – FE550.? The bike has only done 800miles. Has had regular oil changes, no racing, not even off road use.

I was having such fun with my bike, the off road wheels were going on this week too :O(
Thanks again for the tips/advice.

Rob.
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January 11th, 2012, 03:59 AM   #10
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Re: 550 FE - Oil Change - Seize - HELP!!!!

Hi Coxy

I get the feeling if you check out the binding point it might be to do with one of two things breaking. check that a valve spring hasn't collapsed firstly. then the two favourites are the tappet nuts coming off (so count the 4!) and a tooth breaking off the freewheel. the freewhell sits at 1pm over the clutch basket. it is in the middle of the sprague.

wipe all the oil out the bottom and look for debris.

they can make that high pitched scrape noise.

I'm over near Newmarket. but if I can help let me know?

regards

Taffy
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