Melted pistons - K-Bikes.com - Excellence in Motion
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old Jun 6th, 2019, 3:45 pm Thread Starter
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Melted pistons

Anyone else managed to destroy all 4 pistons on a K1300S?
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old Jun 8th, 2019, 1:31 pm
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I give, what happened to do that? Aftermarket tune?

Mount Vernon, WA.
tire guy, I'll mount your tires.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old Jun 9th, 2019, 11:39 am
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I’m intrigued with these pictures yes I’ve seen the other thread running on another forum so the OP is a tad guilty about not saying what was going on at the time!!

There used to be another deceased forum BMW Superbike that had several photos of various early 1200’s with rods hanging out of the front of crankcase’s but this being a 1300 a rarity to say the least,later 1300’s all had the nylon block installed to stop the chain jumping the sprocket was this done on yours 1200’s were done on a recall and I think that included early 1300’s because while there is evidence of some dodgy fuelling the pistons clearly show contact with the valves.
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old Jun 9th, 2019, 3:57 pm
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Originally Posted by chriscanning View Post
Iím intrigued with these pictures yes Iíve seen the other thread running on another forum so the OP is a tad guilty about not saying what was going on at the time!!

There used to be another deceased forum BMW Superbike that had several photos of various early 1200ís with rods hanging out of the front of crankcaseís but this being a 1300 a rarity to say the least,later 1300ís all had the nylon block installed to stop the chain jumping the sprocket was this done on yours 1200ís were done on a recall and I think that included early 1300ís because while there is evidence of some dodgy fuelling the pistons clearly show contact with the valves.
Where do you see contact with the valves?

If you mean the indentations, they are machined to give clearance for the valves.
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old Jun 9th, 2019, 10:28 pm
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Not having see the "other thread" there are several possibilities. Pistons melt when combustion temperatures get too high = too lean. This could occur when....

The ECU is reprogrammed without adequate fueling control?

Running the bike hard as the gas tank runs dry?

02 sensor failure, not telling the ECU of the lean condition?

Throttle position sensor failure, not telling the ECU the throttle setting, thus how much air through the intake?

Cam chain jumped a tooth?

We await further developments and the reveal.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old Jun 10th, 2019, 2:06 pm
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old Jun 10th, 2019, 10:30 pm
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Yeah, the rider says he did 5 minutes(?) at 170+ and this happened. Well, of course the bike will go that fast, there is no oil cooling spray underneath the pistons, it is not a track bike. Glad it did not seize up on you. What other conditions are present, fueling stock, exhaust stock....

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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old Jun 11th, 2019, 4:02 pm Thread Starter
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The bike has a factory fitted Akro, nothing else done to it.
It's a 2010 bike got 23,000 miles on it. Full dealer service history.

Like the thread says did a fast motorway blast, varying from 140 to 170 mph for about 5 mins, came off at a slip and the bike stalled and wouldn't start, would turn over once and then nothing.

Recovered to the UK and started first time and ran but made the horrible cam chain rattle noise from the right hand side of the engine.

Picked up by a garage, no faults showing on the diagnostic, nothing seemingly wrong with the cam chain but when he put an endoscope in the cylinders he saw the state of the pistons.

The bike is touted as a hyper sports tourer so I personally don't see the issue with doing those sort of speeds, i've has a lot of large capacity bikes and never had an issue arise from fast riding.


I'm having a second hand engine fitted but my big worry is this happening again. I can't believe it was caused by not having oil sprayed on to the bottom of the pistons as mentioned above the bike is designed to do high speed runs so should stand up to such treatment.

Once I get this engine back 'll strip it down and might be able to get a better idea as to what has happened to it.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old Jun 12th, 2019, 6:27 am
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Iíd Certainly go along with the bit about wringing the neck of it because iíve Done the same with mine and for a dam sight further than 5 miles but at the same time iím Not running a stock fuel map.

With your K being an early version does it have the nylon block in the motor to stop the chain jumping the sprocket because I donít think the early 1300ís had them in and it was a recall same as my 1200.

The other thing looking the way the piston is eaten away at the edge and how clean the tops are it shows signs of running very weak go into eBay and look at secondhand pistons and they have are all heavily coked up and yours are as clean as whistle.

For no other reason but piece of mind iíd Have spent more time with the original engine to source the problem while it was in situ.


As for another motor my front runner would have been the guy at Telford and haggle a deal for a complete motor with all the bells and whistles attached hopefully you will keep us in formed the fact that it still runs is the intriguing part.
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old Jun 12th, 2019, 5:50 pm Thread Starter
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Swapped a few emails with BMW they think it's either the wrong fuel, didn't really understand this unless they meant low octane or that the oil spray system to the underside of the pistons has failed, oil starvation in the strainer.
They imagine that some debris has gone down in to the crank case wrecking the big end and crank and advise a new engine.

My ebay purchase, from Cheadle, arrives tomorrow and gets fitted at the end of the moth so i'm going to be about £2000 out of pocket, hope to break the engine and sell what serviceable parts there on it to recoup some money.

Will post some pics when I get the engine cracked open.
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