gear lube dripping from plastic black bellows - - Excellence in Motion
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old Apr 22nd, 2013, 2:10 pm Thread Starter
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Fort Collins , Colorado, USA
Posts: 44
gear lube dripping from plastic black bellows

I have a 2002 K1200rs that I purchased in July of last year and so far she has been a dream to ride and other then the mess made with changing fluids, I haven't had an issue with over 4k miles that I have put on her for a total of 32k at this point.

The bike has been sitting the past couple weeks as the unstable Colorado weather has brought snow back to our state and my bike on the trickle charger. I got out for a short ride yesterday and after dismounting and looking around, I saw gear lube on my rear wheel and it is dripping from the bellows area where the transmission and drive shaft meet.

I plan to remove the plastic bellows cover to see what is going on, but I don't know what I should be looking for? I did drain and refill the gear lube a couple months ago and overfilled it at first, but I haven't noticed anything leaking until now. I'm thinking I just need to take it to my mechanic, but if its something simple I don't mind getting dirty.

Any "good" advice would be appreicated,
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old Apr 22nd, 2013, 3:13 pm
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Location: Nottingham, , England
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check the shaft drive oil level... and the gear box oil level - that should give you an idea of where the oil is actually coming from.

if they both need topping up - then do this and see how the levels move. if at all.

this is fairly common occurrence on 1100's - which have a very similar design. It can look a lot worse than it actually is. But.. its best to actually find out where the oil is coming from before you take the whole thing apart.

When this happened to my bike - it was a very small amount of oil - mixed with water. so looked a lot worse than it was.. it came and went. but the oil levels never moved. so.. it really was a tiny amount of oil - probably from the breather.

i kept calm and carried on.
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old Apr 22nd, 2013, 4:33 pm Thread Starter
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Location: Fort Collins , Colorado, USA
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Thanks Moto, I'll take a look at the levels and see if I can tell if either are down much. Now I realize the proper term is boot not bellows! I also saw someone post about putting dye in the lube to see which one is leaking? That seems like a good idea, I don't know what kind of dye would work without messing things up. I think the best thing to do now is monitor and get it fixed once I'm sure where it's coming from.

thanks again,
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old Apr 23rd, 2013, 3:55 pm
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There is a lot more oil in the transmission than there is in the rear drive, so a bad pinion oil seal leak should be easier to spot. The RD oil level at the pinion is fairly high up, so I would not expect mases of oil coming from there for long and there should still be an emergency level of oil in the RD to keep it happy.

Before I did my tranni and clutch seals etc, I was getting about an egg cup full every 2K miles in the boot from the tranni seal. I felt that was tolerable until I did the teardown.

You can test the RD for oil sealing by pumping it up through the vent cap to about 5 psi with a cycle pump and watch on a pressure gauge with tee piece as you rotate the wheel. My RD held that pressure for 20 minutes +, so I eliminated the RD as the source of the oil leak.

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