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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
For the clutch lever system, it seems that mineral oil is recommended.
Which doesn’t tell me so much.

Around where I live I can’t find the blue v10 oil from BM easily.

Some recommend ATF oil, others fork oil…
Would it be possible to use motor oil?
SAE 5w-something… 5w40, 5w50?
 

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two K1300S bikes, S1000R & Vespa 150 Primavera clown paint job
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No, go to a bicycle store they too use mineral oil. It is usually Shimano, Fish Line or some other brand like that. Do not use DOT brake fluid or motor oil.
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I don’t know much about this Shimano’s oil, for bicycle brakes I guess..!

As well, I don’t know what characteristics are crucial for the “clutch lever oil”…?

However, if one concern of BM engineers was the possibility of an escape of this “clutch lever oil” in the engine (gasket leak or what…),

then it doesn’t sound crazy putting a simple engine oil in this clutch lever circuit… 5w40 or 5w50 as mineral oil…

What do you think you fox???
 

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Be careful even with mineral oil. There are different sorts. for example, magura makes blue green and red and the red and the green cannot be mixed without totally flushing your system. I’m going through the same thing at the moment with my k12R and have decided to go with the magura red
This from BeemerBoneyard
Product Description
100 ML bottle of genuine Magura "Blood" blue hydraulic mineral oil. This is the fluid Magura recommends for use in their hydraulic clutch systems found on all R1200GS, RT, ST, R, S and also the newest water cooled R1200GS & RT. Not for use on the K1200/1300 bikes (2005 and later) or the K1600 bikes. Also not for use on older bikes which have their reservoir caps marked "DOT4 Fluid". One bottle is enough for one clutch bleed with some left over.

Product Description
100 ML bottle of genuine Magura "Blood" red hydraulic mineral oil. This is the fluid Magura recommends for use in their hydraulic clutch systems found on all 2005 & later K1200/1300S, R, S, & GT bikes and also the new K1600 bikes. Not for use on the R1200 Hex/Camhead or water-cooled bikes. Also not for use on older bikes which have their reservoir caps marked "DOT4 Fluid". One bottle is enough for one clutch bleed with some left over.
 

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Yes magura blood is hydraulic fluid. I’m going with it because I know what I’m getting. The whole thing about which oil to use is a quite confusing. Brands and designations keep changing which doesn’t help
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Yes, but thank you all for your help.

This is the first time a get a motorcycle with an hydraulic clutch lever.
I’m surprised by the lack of consistent information…

Magura seems pretty good, reputable in the bicycle 🚴 world, then Motorrad hydro clutch too.
It seems, it’s a German brand??? Not sure… of that. Maybe.

However, I live in Japan, so like Beech suggested, I think I give a try to Shimano.

Here in Japan, Magura fluids prices are outrageous. 😄
Buying, a Japanese brand product in Japan, is more acceptable for me now.

I found an interesting blog about this topic…


I seems that in the bicycle world, somes have already tried to mix Shimano and Magura ´s lever, hose, bicycle caliper, then finally use Shimano fluid because it’s more affordable and consistent too.
Without problem.

So, I’ll give a try to Shimano on that one.

Thanks again.
 

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I can tell you from personal experience that refreshing this fluid can make a world of difference in clutch operation. I changed it out in my '12 and the handle operated much better. Per the records Max BMW changed it routinely on my RT.. despite it being a "lifetime" fill.
 

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Agree with Giarcg3: changing the clutch hydraulic oil can make a big difference to the feel. BMW say it's designed never to need it but I change it every couple of years and it always improves things. When I got my bike the oil was pitch black, and it has gone dark once since, so I think the master cylinder seal is on its way out (I'm assuming I can buy a seal kit from a BMW dealer)

I used the expensive BMW oil (dyed red) the first couple of times but, when the bottle was empty, I switched to "LHM" which is Light Hydraulic Mineral oil typically sold for car hydraulic systems (originally designed for the self-levelling suspension in Citroëns), e.g. LHM Plus Hydraulic Fluid (I use Morris Lubricants for everything - seriously good firm). It works as well as the BMW stuff.

People get all weird and mysterious about what to use here because most hydraulic clutches use DOT4 fluid which is Glycol based (and water soluble), whereas these BMs and most pushbikes call for a light mineral oil; and it doesn't help that all the brands bang on about colour rather than just saying what the base actually is. Not sure why mineral and synthetic oil can't be mixed but assume there's a good reason.
 

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Yes magura blood is hydraulic fluid. I’m going with it because I know what I’m getting. The whole thing about which oil to use is a quite confusing. Brands and designations keep changing which doesn’t help
The color isn't by chance.
The Red and Blue are different types of mineral oil and can't be mixed.
Their is a standard for certified red mineral oil.
A small percentage of additives each manufacturer prefers to prolong seal life are the same or close to it. With Spectroscopy there are no secret ingrediants just personal preferance. .
 

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Correct. My k12R takes the red and my HP2 sport takes the blue. It gets confusing tho’ when you look at something like pentosil, which is used by European car makers, which comes in orange or green🤔
 

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It's not confusing and the color coding is a good idiot proof system.
They don't make red white and blue so I'm using Magura Blood because I love the name.

I learnt a lot online because the BMW manual only said "special hydralic fluid" and all the problems I know have are because of their greed to get pennies from supplioes enstead of thousands for my next bike. I'm retired and put everything I could beg borrow or steal to ride to Bonneville.
I will fix it because it's fast and I have never quit or given up in my life.

I read and forgot about the other types since I only ride or build one bike at a time.
At 74 I wanted a bike to ride to Bonneville. If it's not this one I'll teach tennis again or marry a rich widow and get a Suzuki GT. I only saw their ad but already know there have no secrets.
 

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Hi all. Just got a 2013 K1300R and the clutch fluid looks dirty, and wanted to change it. I don't have a BMW dealer near me and getting g hold of Magura red mineral oil is abot out as hard. It's also not clear what the exact specs are.

Is there an alternative to Vitam LS (listed in the manual) fluid used by BMW (Castrol, Penrite, Shell Mobil, Volvolin) ?
Can I just use Syntetic ATF (Mercon) ?
 

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Should look blue, and very dark. I have a 2011 bike and it has never been changed. what's up? Do you have mail order capabilities? Also the cap requires you press in the side lock tabs to rotate the cap. You can muscle it but it will never be the same.
 

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Vitam LS is red. I have just done my clutch bleed and used Shimano fluid for bicycle brakes which is pretty much the same stuff as Vitam and Magura Blood. It is red and comes in either 100ml or 1 litre bottles. 100ml is enough to flush the system and refill. Vitam V10 is blue or green
 

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Vitam LS is red. I have just done my clutch bleed and used Shimano fluid for bicycle brakes which is pretty much the same stuff as Vitam and Magura Blood. It is red and comes in either 100ml or 1 litre bottles. 100ml is enough to flush the system and refill. Vitamin V10 is blue or green
Thank you, much appreciated.
 

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Just remember K1200 / 1300s are RED.
The additives for seals are about 2%
Any of the Red Mineral Oil Brake Fluids sold at through a Bicycle Shop will work.
BMW has a different supplier after Magura since a contract dispute.
The different colors are different types. Brands are a matter of choice.
Shimano has it's own legion of followers. First Line also.
Magura Royal Purple and Magura Blood Red are two different types.
Buy what you can get locally and order what you want.

I was lucky in that a bike shop poured 110 ml for me from his 2 Litre bike shop supply.
Mineral oil can be opened and closed not like DOT 4.
 

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Rang 3 different BMW dealers around Brisbane, and nobody has stock or even heard of this fluid. I will just buy the Shimano mineral oil.
 
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