Changed rings but plugs still oil-foul

Changed rings but plugs still oil-foul.

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melchorz
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Changed rings but plugs still oil-foul

#1

Post by melchorz » Sat Jun 09, 2018 9:14 pm

1963 FLH. I put 2000 miles on the bike since I bought it. Andrews -J- grind cam. Morris magneto. Flow-Head works heads with maybe 20k miles. S&S Super-E carb. Bore is .010 over.
My clumsy measurements show .003 average piston clearance on the TRW pistons which were layered with thick carbon when I opened it up. I installed new Hastings rings with the one piece oil ring gapped per specs.
Valve seals look good, with no stem wiggle in the guides.
Problem: Plugs oil-foul after a ride around the block.
Help. I'm tired and sad.



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Re: Changed rings but plugs still oil-foul

#2

Post by RUBONE » Sat Jun 09, 2018 9:28 pm

Make sure your cylinder is not hitting the head recess before it fully compresses the head gasket. A small discrepancy can allow the engine to suck oil from the drain side of the cylinder or conversely allow oil pumped up the feed side to enter the combustion chamber. Rarely but it happens is a porous cylinder casting allowing oil to pass through the cylinder wall itself. Is it a stroker? If using stroker pistons the oil rang can travel below the drain hole in the cylinder causing it to pump oil into the combustion chamber. If so it can be remedied.
Robbie

melchorz
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Re: Changed rings but plugs still oil-foul

#3

Post by melchorz » Sat Jun 09, 2018 10:58 pm

Thanks Robbie. I've reading your posts since I got my a panhead.
Nope, rings stop way before the drain hole. I'm sure it is not a stroker...least the PO did not mention it.
By the way I checked the bottom end by twisting the pistons and cannot detect any looseness. And there's minimal feeler gage clearance between the rods and flywheel...so I think there's a lot of fight left in the engine.
How do I determine if the heads are touching the before the head gasket stops compressing? I'm using the blue James gaskets.
Where you at? I grew up in Trenton NJ.

melchorz
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Re: Changed rings but plugs still oil-foul

#4

Post by melchorz » Sat Jun 09, 2018 11:40 pm

Perhaps I could test head to cylinder clearance with a piece of plumber's solder sandwiched on top of the protruding ring?

melchorz
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Re: Changed rings but plugs still oil-foul

#5

Post by melchorz » Sun Jun 10, 2018 12:21 am

Sorry for the stream of confidence but come to think of it, the head gasket was wet with oil when I took it apart for the second time to check for problems.
Questions: Does anyone make a thick head gasket? Or one not made of "paper" like the blue James gasket?

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Re: Changed rings but plugs still oil-foul

#6

Post by RUBONE » Sun Jun 10, 2018 4:17 am

Measure the fire ring on the cylinder. Measure the depth of the recess in the head. What is the difference in them? Which is the greater?

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Re: Changed rings but plugs still oil-foul

#7

Post by Excalibur » Sun Jun 10, 2018 9:23 am

...or else the rings have not bed in ??

Has bike oil fouled plugs for the 2000 miles you've owned it?

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Re: Changed rings but plugs still oil-foul

#8

Post by nmaineron » Sun Jun 10, 2018 12:44 pm

silly putty works for this

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Re: Changed rings but plugs still oil-foul

#9

Post by TOBPITBULLS » Mon Jun 11, 2018 1:10 pm

If head gasket was wet that’s a problem...I use cometic multiple layer gaskets... best hands down.
Contact Jason at cometic and have him make you a set if not stock.

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Re: Changed rings but plugs still oil-foul

#10

Post by Panacea » Mon Jun 11, 2018 9:57 pm

The heads are made by Flo headworks? Or just re-worked? Can you do a leak down test?

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Re: Changed rings but plugs still oil-foul

#11

Post by ingram » Tue Jun 12, 2018 12:16 am

Valve seals or valve guides or piston rings are usually the problem. If you have check these, your oil tension ring might be the problem.

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Re: Changed rings but plugs still oil-foul

#12

Post by melchorz » Tue Jun 12, 2018 1:42 am

Thanks for all replies.
-Heads look to be original to the bike with a "Flow-Head" stamp around the plug hole.
-Nice valve seals installed...still feel tight on stem...guides "feel" tight too.
-Excalibur, the combustion chamber was caked with hard black deposits when I first opened it up leading me to suspect and change out the rings. At the time I did not look for a gasket issue. I may have missed it.
-I found some surplus HD metal gaskets in the spare parts box that came with the bike. If they don't work I'll try calling Jason at Cometic.
-I got silly putty and I got modeling clay too...I'll give it a try.
-I'm wondering if I could just lay the head on top the barrel without the gasket and measure the gap near the bolt holes with a feeler gage.
-I can also measure the ring depth in the head and the ring height on top of the cylinder barrel and do subtraction. The starting thickness of the gasket is .042. I figure a gasket will crush down to between .038 to .040. So after my little subtraction I mentioned above I'm hoping for a gap that assures that the head ring and the barrel ring won't touch when torqued.
-Fellas, I no longer think of myself as Mr. Shade Tree Mechanic. This Panhead has made me humble (but I plan to keep her forever).
-I'll report back findings in a couple weeks.

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Re: Changed rings but plugs still oil-foul

#13

Post by melchorz » Tue Jun 12, 2018 1:54 am

Last summer in Bucks County Pennsylvania.

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Re: Changed rings but plugs still oil-foul

#14

Post by Excalibur » Tue Jun 12, 2018 4:17 am

-I'm wondering if I could just lay the head on top the barrel without the gasket and measure the gap near the bolt holes with a feeler gage
Yes, that should work.

I suggest put up some pics. It's surprising what the brains trust can tell you about your parts. Include old head gaskets, piston crowns, head face, etc.

melchorz
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Re: Changed rings but plugs still oil-foul

#15

Post by melchorz » Wed Jun 13, 2018 1:30 am

melchorz wrote:
Tue Jun 12, 2018 1:54 am
Last summer in Bucks County Pennsylvania.
Oops! Forgot to add the image:
976802F0-3203-4292-89FB-F1600875A3FD.jpeg
976802F0-3203-4292-89FB-F1600875A3FD.jpeg (615.54 KiB) Viewed 185 times

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