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- - By aware Date 11-02-2012 17:29
It was a lucky-unlucky thing...

There was a major flood from a river being spread around houses.
My bike was there.
I was lucky that the river didn't move the bike (it was just stuck between wrecks).
I was unlucky that the water lever was almost 1 meter.
The bike couldn't start. I cleaned injection plug with compressed air and took out the wet and full of mud air filter.
I took out the spark plug, cleaned with compressed air the combustion chamber and after 1 million attempts, it started!!
Then the oil engine light came on. I also drove it a little and found is hesitating a looooot.
Also white smoke comes out of exhaust.
And I checked oil and it was like having water inside...

Questions to fellow members here:

1) How the hell water entered oil?
2) Why I have a dull performance?
3) Why I have white smoke after running the bike motor for 15-20 minutes?

Thanks in advance, please feel free to add any input.


Parent - By C1200 Date 11-02-2012 18:47 Edited 11-02-2012 18:53
Oh Al,thats awful :-( I am guessing that it got in through the exhaust pipe maybe,or even in through the airbox if high enough.
White smoke usually means water in the engine(obviously I know!) but low performance could(might) mean a partial seizure due to oil/water mixing or just the fact that its in there and inhibiting engine performance till removed. Im not a mechanic,just guessing at this Al
Parent - By davemiller Date 11-02-2012 22:03
The oil casing is not completely sealed - there's always some route for excess pressure to escape from the crankcase.  If water and mud filled the air filter, then it will almost certainly have got everywhere else around the engine.

It also means the crankcase will have been overfull, and would resist the running of the engine?  Or maybe there was water causing problems in the electrics, too?

But - maybe - the engine has not been too badly damaged.  I suggest that before you run it again, you make sure that there is no more water in:

- the cylinder
- the crankcase (completely change the oil)
- the fuel tank (completely change the fuel), and
- all electrical units.

Hope you and your neighbours managed to clear up everything else OK.
Parent - - By bolt-on-billy Date 11-02-2012 22:17
if the airbox was flooded then water can get into the top of the engine via the head cover breather pipe.

white smoke could be water boiling off the oil and getting out through the engine or just a flooded exhaust drying out. it is after all -lots degrees centigrade out there at the moment.

if the oil is mayonaissing though then it will block the oilways and filter so be carefull. you can try and flush the engine out with white spirit turning it over with the starter to get it around the engine then put some diesel engine oil in there to help clean it out until the next change or some very cheap supermarket oil for a few hundred miles

hesitation could be a dry piston or muck in the idle valve. its possible you put water in there if you didnt take the carb off and drain it out.

you should get away without having to strip it down but it might be worth dropping the oil and maybe taking the alternator casing off if its getting messy in the engine. I would say that the more you take it down the better it should recover.

personally I would take the exhaust, carb and airbox off at least and give a good clean, jack the middle of the bike up with the shocks undone and take the head cover off so you can wash the engine down and look for anything looking nasty in there. the variators probably need a look at as well.
Parent - - By C1200 Date 11-02-2012 23:10
Al,tell you what,ship it over here and we will do it for you :-).I know Dave is good at getting water out of an engine,I do recall his sideways entry into that stream some years back :-)
Parent - - By aware Date 12-02-2012 18:50 Edited 12-02-2012 18:53

Thanks for this massive input; I will change oil twice (my cousin said to put 10w40 for some 100 kms and then the normal 20w50).
This should fix the oil light problem.
Most of the water in the exhaust pipe is been blown out with pressurised air and I hope that after some running the hesitation will stop.

Because this hesitation thing is really not understeandable to me at all.
Parent - - By aware Date 19-02-2012 17:09
So I changed oil which meant that I took out the old oil which was actually full of mud, brown colored.
Then I put some new oil to find out that after some 3 minutes the oil pressure light was on again.
So I took out this new oil which was almost the same brown color as the first time.
This time I changed the oil filter too, which is a nightmare in the place the astute BMW designers to put it and how these 10mm screws can be "gripped".
I decided to put some torx screws in the places of them and I hope this will prove a good solution next time I decide to take out the oil filter casing again.
Now there is no oil pressure light on and the bike has 2 problems:
1) The throttle grip is stiff and very hard to move - I put some WD40 at the other end where the engine is, but with actually no benefit.
2) The hesitation continues. Actually the bike behaves as many posts here on the forum complaining that in cold weather for some minutes it just struggles to accelerate. This happens with my bike ALWAYS!

I am considering of swapping the injection valve with my other motorbike to see if this soaked in water and thus problematic. Also maybe to clean the fuel filter or replace it.
What do you guys think? Please throw some light.

Parent - - By jeb Date 19-02-2012 18:43
in view of all the mud that has got into the engine i would not start it at all.   think of all that grit getting into the crank bearings and camshaft bearings  it will cause very rapid wear of all the components. best thing would be to remove the engine and dismantle it.    clean everything and blow through all the oilways to make sure all traces of mud and water are removed, hopefully it will be ok on reassembly,   usually though,if an engine has been in a flood situation it is beyond redemption(hopefully not).
Parent - - By aware Date 22-02-2012 13:46
Change of oil third time, this time oil and little metal filter at bolt was really clean.
I checked injection valve and seems problematic. I cleaned with air pressure with little benefit.
Now I will swap it with my other bike valve.
I was also thinking of replacement of fuel filter, my question is can I put any similar filter or necessarily the BMW original one ?
Parent - - By bolt-on-billy Date 23-02-2012 19:41
did you check the flutter valve and throttle body? if crap has gotten into the air box then thats the next step along with the air temp sensor. the filter should still be allright if the fuel wasnt contaminated. if it was then you would have to flush out the lines and tank as well.
Parent - - By aware Date 23-02-2012 21:08 Edited 23-02-2012 21:12
Now the bike doesnt seem to want to ignite at all.
Something must be wrong with the fuel pump.
I can hear the distinctive sound when turning the ignition on BUT the injection valve sends some gas burst only at the very beginning when I press to start the engine. Then it doesn't send any further bursts.
I tried a second injenction valve with the same problem.
Then I removed the injection valve and realised that there is lot of gas being pumped but again only at first moment I click the starter button.
Maybe I need to remove the spark plug - CAN THIS BE "BURNED"? - it's brand new...
Pisssssssed off enough for today


****the most strange thing is that I used it for many km's. I only found out that sometimes it really stuggled to start especially with cold weather and when engine was cold too*****
Parent - - By aware Date 24-02-2012 14:22
tired with this
1. The fuel pump works OK when the spark plug is unplugged.
2. The fuel pump bursts only once and then ceases bursting when spark plug is plugged.
3. There is spark and combustion pressure HOWEVER THE SPARK PLUG NEVER GETS WET WITH GAS... in other words the gas leaves the injection valve normally but never sees the combustion chamber
4. I spoke with BMW mechanic and said that possibly the cam chain jumped some teeth and that's why the gas never enters the chamber.
5. Here is a video of how it behaves

Please fellow masterminds throw some ideas. There is lot of expertise on this forum.

Parent - - By Drynotwet Date 24-02-2012 15:12
sounds like maybe the camis not rotating at all-chain fell off inside? Not a normal starting noise at all-too rattly.
take the head cover off, check timing, turn engine over with head cover off to see what's happening
good luck!
Parent - - By aware Date 24-02-2012 15:44 Edited 24-02-2012 17:24
Some days ago this same rattly sound was eventually followed by ignition and a running (but hesitating) bike. Now it just stays at this state, rattly sound with no ignition.

PS: the sure thing is that no way the fuel goes to the chamber which means that something may be wrong with inlet valves.
PS2: the most strange thing is that when the spark plug is plugged some sensor (what?) understands that something changed (what?) and forces the fuel pump to stop bursting fuel.
Ps3: or... there is some pressure that doesn't allow the piston to move when the spark plug is plugged AND the crack sensor reads the stalling of the piston and thus stops the fuel injection AND the rattly sound is the result of a starter motor going in "neutral gear" to protect from further damage. THIS IS THE MOST LOGICAL AND OF COURSE THE WORST OUTCOME I COULD EXPECT.......
Parent - - By jeb Date 24-02-2012 20:11 Edited 24-02-2012 20:23
i listened to the video and it does not sound like it is turning the engine over with the spark plug in     it could be turning over with the spark plug out cos no compression which would explain problem.   if the starter clutch is crudded up it would do this   take the plastic drive belt cover off to see if the engine is turning over by looking at the front variator
Parent - - By aware Date 24-02-2012 20:28
I will check this. Fir your question, the sound you listen is WITH spark plug plugged ...
Parent - - By jeb Date 24-02-2012 20:37
this sound is like the starter spragg clutch slipping when under load from compression with plug in  this could be the reason no fuel in cylinder cos engine not turning .   with plug out there is no load on starter clutch so engine turns over with fuel being pumped in.      could also be related to previous starting problem when cold cos oil is thick and increasing load on starter clutch.
Parent - - By aware Date 24-02-2012 21:16
Should I try thinner oil like 10w40?
Parent - - By jeb Date 24-02-2012 22:42 Edited 24-02-2012 23:41
it would not make any real difference cos if the problem is the starter clutch it is this that needs attention   i would say that if you are not an experienced diy,er maybe this is not a job for you to attempt.   there are references on how to do this on the forum,   search starter clutch or sometimes called the spragg clutch,  same thing.  see how you go after checking that the engine is turning over as mentioned earlier.     it still may not be the starter clutch cos only based diagnosis on the noise of your video,   you maybe able to give the starter a bit of help by using a 19mm socket on a ratchet on the front variator nut after removing the plastic drive belt cover.   do this whilst pressing the starter to assist against the compression.  you MUST use a ratchet cos if it starts the bar will rotate
Parent - - By aware Date 25-02-2012 08:32
Does the starter clutch use the same oil with engine or it uses gearbox oil (different oil tank, different oil)?
Parent - - By aware Date 25-02-2012 10:01 Edited 25-02-2012 10:06
Really warm here today, the bike started very easily. So most probably the gearbox oil is thick and needs change. I have to check the service manual to see how I can do this - I have no clue.....
Parent - - By aware Date 25-02-2012 10:55 Edited 25-02-2012 11:28
Step by step realizations...
the gearbox oil as I now understand is not related with the starter clutch hesitation ...
I will need to deassemble it in order to clean it?
Is it a 1 hour or much more time consuming ?

Your input has proven very valuable , this place is really a marvel.

PS: The bike still hesitates which may mean that the can chain may have slipped ... but then why when really warm day leads to a rather easy engine start....? Mysteries that must be solved definetely
Parent - - By jeb Date 25-02-2012 11:50 Edited 25-02-2012 12:36
with a very warm day the oil in the engine will not be as thick as a real cold day so there will be less load on the starter motor to turn the engine over.    i would still look toward the starter clutch for the problem.   it will be a much longer job than 1 hour to fix a starter clutch and can be a bit fiddly to do and the parts will be around E100 from bmw.   also i dont think the cam chain will have jumped a tooth and the hesitation is something different probably fuel related.   if it were cam chain it would be like it all the time and not just hesitant at times.   it could also be a faulty engine temp. sensor or the air temp.sensor which controls the amount of fuel required for a cold start via the ecu.   all this is pure guesswork but worth changing with sensor off other bike to prove or not.   keep trying and i am sure you get there in the end. best of luck.
Parent - - By aware Date 25-02-2012 14:02
The thing is that it hesitates (dull acceleration) at all times.
Although I changed injection valve, took out the old gas etc etc

Another thought I made is that voltage of battery today (warm) was 12.9v
Yesterday (cold weather) voltage was 11.8v
However, yesterday I also used jump cables (with thick inner cabling) and gave continuous power (from car with engine running) to my 11.8v battery.
Should this mean that maybe battery today with warmer weather was that critical more strong to move the parts?
Parent - - By superted Date 25-02-2012 14:26
I would certainly check the cam timing as it's relatively easy to do. When my 125 did it the symptoms were very similar to what you describe
Parent - By aware Date 25-02-2012 15:16
Could you please elaborate ?
What similar symptoms you had ?
this strange sound from possibly the starter clutch ?
Parent - - By jeb Date 25-02-2012 14:35
if you had jump leads on it yesterday it would have been as strong as it is today so i dont think its a battery problem.
Parent - - By aware Date 25-02-2012 16:40
May I please ask how is this spragg clutch mentioned in the C1 Repair Manual?
What is the official term?
Parent - - By superted Date 25-02-2012 17:13
The symptoms I referred to were the sluggishness and sometimes poor starting. The sprag clutch is referred to as the "freewheel" and is item number 10 in this diagram
Parent - By aware Date 25-02-2012 17:34
I have both "sluggishness" and "sometimes poor starting" especially when weather is cold.
Now, it seems that either I have one of the problems mentioned (spragg clutch cluttered with mud OR cam chain slipped) or both!!
I think of starting with the cam chain check, for me it seems easier and more straight forward procedure.
Parent - - By C1200 Date 26-02-2012 10:16
Might also be the starter motor brushes maybe,they cause slow and sluggish starting,might need a replacement starter motor,easy to change that over.
Parent - By aware Date 26-02-2012 11:51
Very recently the starter motor was refurbished with new brushes so only possibility is that mud entered the brushes compartment which I reckon is unlikely.
However this CLAK CLAK sound is very new to me (as can be heard on my last posted video) and I had in the past a really cluttered starter motor with brushes struggling in between loads of greasy oil....
Parent - - By jeb Date 25-02-2012 17:21 Edited 25-02-2012 17:23
i do not have a manual so i dont know what bmw call it.    it is located behind the alternator bell, also called reluctor ,generator and other names. to access it ,drain oil,remove black generator cover on right side of engine, loosen three nuts on centre of bell, undo centre bolt and remove bell.spragg clutch is on the back.   this is a simplified explanation of the job.
Parent - - By aware Date 26-02-2012 19:25
V2k kindly suggested the idea of the starter motor which now after second and third thought I believe would be worthwhile to change with a spare aftermarket one I have given the simplicity of the procedure.
Parent - - By aware Date 27-02-2012 08:51
some noticeable improvement since now even in cold weather there is some little hesitation to start and some clack clack but eventually starts.
I have no time at all to start the investigation process on the "patient" however will do this soon.
Parent - - By aware Date 29-02-2012 23:16
May I please where the idle valve is located ?
Parent - By aware Date 01-03-2012 12:51
Thanks !
Parent - - By C1200 Date 01-03-2012 17:36
Al thats terrible..havent you got anything else instead of the front wheel to put your oranges in when youre riding?
Parent - - By aware Date 01-03-2012 19:02
The orange acts as a weight to balance the wheel.... !
Parent - - By C1200 Date 01-03-2012 20:30
Parent - - By aware Date 06-03-2012 09:42
I don't have a lot of free time however I am inclined to check the timing chain for any slipping. And this because the bike still struggles to accelerate and starting is not as quick as it used to be. So some questions I have :
1. Can I open the valves cap without undoing the shocks?
2. In order to move the piston to the dead point shall I just turn the 19mm front variator screw?
3. The dead point can be found by undoing the spark plug and putting a screwdriver inside until the screwdriver is outjogging the maximum ?
4. And if I need to readjust the chain, how is this done? I have experience from Honda bikes with this but the C1 thing seems a little more complicated.
Parent - - By aware Date 07-03-2012 17:55
Nobody replied... hmmm this may mean that I ask really difficult questions or experienced members haven't yet the time to respond...

Anyway I just wanted also to say that the left grip isn't heated any more and I found some cables cut but they aren't the same color so shall I connect them?

Cables shown in yellow circles.

Parent - By superted Date 07-03-2012 19:37
I think a good rule of thumb is not to connect anything unless you have a good idea what it is :-) I'll have a look tomorrow and see if I can see what these wires might be - unless anyone else has an idea
Parent - - By superted Date 07-03-2012 19:34
I started to give a blow-by-blow account, then remembered that Lawrie had already done it. Have a good read through;hl=camshaft and I think you should have all the answers
Parent - - By aware Date 07-03-2012 20:52
Really good info there, thanks a lot.
Parent - - By aware Date 08-03-2012 09:27
I also now think that I can check the cables with some multimeter to see if they are part of the left grip heating. My question is: is under the seat actually any connection for the grip heating ?
Parent - - By simonr Date 09-03-2012 12:28 Edited 09-03-2012 23:48
Unless it's an aftermarket heated grip, then the wire under the seat has nothing to do with the grip. The grip wires-in under the dashboard.
Parent - - By C1200 Date 09-03-2012 15:21 Edited 09-03-2012 15:41
Thats right,thought it could the wire be to the connector for the seatbelt switch,but see that has three small wires and not two.I cant see a stray wire layout like that on mine Al.Its nothing to do with that switch or whatever you have added on there is it?
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