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Thread: no oil, not muffler!

  1. #41
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
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    Re: no oil, not muffler!

    "My cars don't have gaskets on the drain plugs, but my motorcycles do. On the motorcycles, I never change them. Why bother, if they are not leaking?"

    On my Kz900 and ZRX, the filter kits typically come with new gaskets for the adapter and the plug. I agree with you that it rarely appears they need to be replaced, but since they come with the kit and the parts are already taken off, etc. I usually go ahead and swap in the new gaskets, o-rings. I figure they're giving them to me for some reason...!





  2. #42
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
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    Re: no oil, not muffler!

    Quote Originally Posted by DonTom
    If you have a true oil pressure gauge, not some kind of on/off thing, it sounds as if you have managed to beat the odds, and didn't hurt your engine.

    It has a gauge, but I have no idea how "true" it is. It read normal even during the time it had very low oil and was making a lot of noise because of it.

    We've but on several thousand miles on this car since then (it's out most used car) and have no had any problems and it does not eat any engine oil.

    -Don-



    Just an update that bears on this little debate:

    The mechanical oil pressure gauge I installed on my Kz900 gives me a much more precise "read" of the oil pressure at any given time. With just the sender and idiot light, I only got two indications - there is oil pressure (though not much of an idea how much or little oil presure) or there is next to no oi pressure (the light comes on when the senor reads less than 5 psi, I think). In other words, the light is pretty useless - other than as a fail-safe 9and assuming I can shut off the engine almost immediately when/if that light does come on!

    With the gauge, I can visually confirm that I have, for example, 15 psi .. or 8 psi. I can see the oil pressure "curve" throughout the engine's operating range (whichallows me to confirm the oil pump's working properl, etc. - as opposed to barely working).

    All in all, seems like a smart decision to me. And the gauge looks good, too!

  3. #43
    DonTom
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    Re: no oil, not muffler!

    All in all, seems like a smart decision to me. And the gauge looks good, too!

    If I have a vehicle that's old enough to lose oil pressure, I would junk it anyway. So to me, an oil pressure gauge is rather wortless.

    -Don-

  4. #44
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
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    Re: no oil, not muffler!

    Quote Originally Posted by DonTom
    All in all, seems like a smart decision to me. And the gauge looks good, too!

    If I have a vehicle that's old enough to lose oil pressure, I would junk it anyway. So to me, an oil pressure gauge is rather wortless.

    -Don-
    How about a restored older vehicle? My Kz's 31 years old - but looks and runs as good as new... but you never know - right?

    A vehicle of any age can experience a sudden drop (or total loss) of oil pressure; if I can save my engine by having had a bit of warning about a failing oil pump, etc., I'd say it was money very well spent. Moreover, the diagnostic aspect is helpful, too.

  5. #45
    mrblanche
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    Re: no oil, not muffler!

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric
    How about a restored older vehicle? My Kz's 31 years old - but looks and runs as good as new... but you never know - right?

    A vehicle of any age can experience a sudden drop (or total loss) of oil pressure; if I can save my engine by having had a bit of warning about a failing oil pump, etc., I'd say it was money very well spent. Moreover, the diagnostic aspect is helpful, too.
    The problem is that you can't keep your eyes on the gauge all the time, so a catastrophic failure can occur without you're knowing it, still. In fact, the gauge is best at pointing out slow failures, not sudden ones.

  6. #46
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
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    Re: no oil, not muffler!

    Quote Originally Posted by mrblanche
    Quote Originally Posted by Eric
    How about a restored older vehicle? My Kz's 31 years old - but looks and runs as good as new... but you never know - right?

    A vehicle of any age can experience a sudden drop (or total loss) of oil pressure; if I can save my engine by having had a bit of warning about a failing oil pump, etc., I'd say it was money very well spent. Moreover, the diagnostic aspect is helpful, too.
    The problem is that you can't keep your eyes on the gauge all the time, so a catastrophic failure can occur without you're knowing it, still. In fact, the gauge is best at pointing out slow failures, not sudden ones.
    True; nothing's absolutely foolproof. But I maintain the gauge provides more info - and is thus more useful - than the idiot light. (It's also mechanical, so unlike an electri sender/idiot light, you are less apt to get a false reading. Assuming the gauge is a quality piece, of course!)

  7. #47
    mrblanche
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    Re: no oil, not muffler!

    A regular observation of the gauge at all sorts of operation can make you wiser about the condition of your vehicle. A cursory glance now and then, however, will do nothing (shown by the fact that it's been removed in most cars).

  8. #48
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
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    Re: no oil, not muffler!

    Quote Originally Posted by mrblanche
    A regular observation of the gauge at all sorts of operation can make you wiser about the condition of your vehicle. A cursory glance now and then, however, will do nothing (shown by the fact that it's been removed in most cars).
    Agreed... and I believe this is one reason why so many cars have gone to lights over real gauges; people are increasingy inattentive and you need a flashing light, etc. to get them tonotice anything...

  9. #49
    DonTom
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    Re: no oil, not muffler!

    people are increasingy inattentive and you need a flashing light, etc. to get them tonotice anything...

    IMO, we are all like, at least sometimes, when we drive. There are often some things more important to check while driving than the gauges.

    Because of this, I added a lamp in my RV to show when it's not charging. If an alternator belt breaks, I will know the very second it happens instead of noticing the very slow decrease in battery voltage as shown on the gauge after many miles of driving.

    As I have explained here before, the lamp on the GM vehicles was so well thought out that it's MUCH better than a voltage (or current) gauge. The good news is that with older GM vehicles with only a gauge, the alternator fail lamp is very easy to add. A small 12 volt lamp in series with the brown alternator lead is all that is required. The current this lamp should be changes a bit from one GM model to the next, but what looks like the proper brightness when ignition on with engine off and not on at all when running at fast idle is when it will work fine in 1970's & early 1980 vehicles. The voltmeter will still work normally.

    I added such in my 1984 Chevy Van (350 CID) that I used to own as well as in my 1978 (400 CID) Chevy RV which I still own. With this GM lamp design, the lamp must be on with ignition on when engine is NOT running, completely out with engine running or when key is out (or ignition completely turned off). That's all the owner needs to know about the charging, but the old voltmeter will still work normally anyway.

    -Don-


  10. #50
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
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    Re: no oil, not muffler!

    "IMO, we are all like, at least sometimes, when we drive. "

    I'll agree to that - with one exception: Anything really old. I constantly scan/monitor all the gauges when driving/riding my antiques vehicles. Even though they are all kept in top tune and I am pretty anal about maintenance,when you are dealing with decades-old equipment that, even when perfectly retored, still represents the often iffy technology of its era, it is prudent to be a little paranoid. These vehicles were, for example, often prone to overheating even when nearly new...

    "Because of this, I added a lamp in my RV to show when it's not charging. If an alternator belt breaks, I will know the very second it happens instead of noticing the very slow decrease in battery voltage as shown on the gauge after many miles of driving."

    Good call!



  11. #51
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    Re: no oil, not muffler!

    >>Good call! <<

    When there is only one choice, I'll take the light over the gauge because of the fact it get's your attention. The light is as mechanical as the gauge when it comes to a catastrophic failure, and speaking of that, when was the last time you had oil pressure fail? Both the gauge and the light use sending units.
    It's been years--- 1971 for a fact when the last time I had an engine overheat and that happened at 120 MPH and by the time I got stopped, the engine was in bad shape! Point being, a gauge never would have helped here -- mainly because at that speed, I was only quickly glancing at the speedo--- all eyes were on the road!


  12. #52
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    Re: no oil, not muffler!

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Rose
    When there is only one choice, I'll take the light over the gauge because of the fact it get's your attention. The light is as mechanical as the gauge when it comes to a catastrophic failure, and speaking of that, when was the last time you had oil pressure fail? Both the gauge and the light use sending units.
    I once owned a 1961 Alfa Romeo Giulietta Spyder Normale. It had a mechanical oil pressure gauge, and there was actually a copper tube from the engine to the gauge (e.g., no sending unit). Unfortunately, the copper tube was fastened to the aluminum engine block, just beneath the exhaust manifold, with a brass bolt. Brass, copper, aluminum--different rates of expansion and contraction, which meant that sooner or later, the bolt would work loose, resulting in a spray of oil onto the exhaust (and the pervasive smell of hot oil). The fix was, of course, to tighten the bolt. But that had to be done when the car was cold, as if it had just been driven, you would burn the Hell out of your hand when you reached in under the exhaust to do the tightening.

  13. #53
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    Re: no oil, not muffler!

    >>I once owned a 1961 Alfa Romeo Giulietta Spyder Normale. It had a mechanical oil pressure gauge, and there was actually a copper tube from the engine to the gauge (e.g., no sending unit). <<

    Most all of the old cars had "real" gauges in the dashboard. An oil leak inside the car was not too common, but it could and did happen on occasion.

  14. #54
    mrblanche
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    Re: no oil, not muffler!

    I had a brand new 1989 Volvo truck that I picked up in Birmingham and drove to Kansas City. While there, I noticed oil dripping on my shoe under the dashboard. Turned out to be an oil capillary tube.

  15. #55
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
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    Re: no oil, not muffler!

    Quote Originally Posted by mrblanche
    I had a brand new 1989 Volvo truck that I picked up in Birmingham and drove to Kansas City. While there, I noticed oil dripping on my shoe under the dashboard. Turned out to be an oil capillary tube.
    The guage I installed on the old Kz900 is mechanical; brass fitting into the aluminum block. So far, no leaks or problems...

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