Over-winter storage .vs. valve springs....


Information and questions on GL1200 Goldwings (1984-1987)
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leakyroof58
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Over-winter storage .vs. valve springs....

Post by leakyroof58 »



Here in the frozen north it's not uncommon for our bikes
to be stored for 5 months. I've taken all the steps found
on these forums, but haven't seen any info on letting the
engine sit, in the same position, for that length of time.
My concern is that when you shut it off for the last time of
the season, certain cylinders have intake/exhaust
springs compressed, while others are totally relaxed.

Would anybody out there have any ideas about maybe
rotating the engine, maybe once a month, 90 degrees
or so to let some valves 'relax' ?? My only idea is to
put the battery in and crank it briefly, but you still won't
know where it stops. I don't think you could rotate the
engine even in 5th gear due to the shaft drive ratios,
using the rear wheel. I'm paraniod I guess, but it's a
concern of mine.

Any input is appreciated.

Waiting for spring.



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ekvh
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Re: Over-winter storage .vs. valve springs....

Post by ekvh »

I've never heard of anyone doing that. I can't see how it would hurt. Using the alternator bolt it would be easy to do.

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WingAdmin
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Re: Over-winter storage .vs. valve springs....

Post by WingAdmin »

Contrary to what a lot of people think, leaving a spring compressed within its design limits does not wear it out, or cause it to take a "set." What wears springs out is flexing - or use. When I crewed on a race team, we could have an engine sit for months and the valve springs would be completely fine, but after two races (maybe 2 1/2 hours engine run time), the valve springs were so worn out that if we didn't replace them, we'd break one (we replaced all 16 valve springs every other race).

Just like the magazines used on guns: fully loaded magazines, with their springs compressed, function just as well after having sat that way for many years as they do when brand new. It is the repeated flexing of the magazine spring as it is used and subsequently reloaded that actually wears it out.

Steel is crystalline, and as it is repeatedly flexed and unflexed, the bonds between these crystals break down, until ht becomes weak enough that the steel fractures. But when it is flexed and just left that way, there is no movement occurring to break those bonds, so it does not cause a problem.

Keep in mind that if a spring is overflexed beyond its design limits, this can cause a permanent weakening, but this does not occur in valve springs that are installed in the engine.

Incidentally, this is the same reason why shock/fork springs "wear out" - years of flexing and unflexing as they absorb the bumps that they are travelling over.

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Rusty Bike
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Re: Over-winter storage .vs. valve springs....

Post by Rusty Bike »

Hmmm, first cup of coffee and I learned something allready! ;)

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leakyroof58
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Re: Over-winter storage .vs. valve springs....

Post by leakyroof58 »

Wow - thread closed/case closed..... :D

Wingadmin - it's NO WONDER you are the admin here....I've
never heard a more concise, informed answer on a subject!
Your response just blew me away - and yet makes perfect sense,
looking back over the years. I have several friends with plow
trucks, and once April comes, they park them and don't do much
with them until November. They always run fine the next year.
I have had good luck with lawn tractors, snow blowers, etc, and
never gave this concern a passing thought. I guess that with this
'Wing I'm just over-concerned. It was a 'bucket-list' item for me,
and now that I have it I want to do everything I can to make it last.
At 64K miles, I think the old girl has lots of miles left, maybe
more than me.

I won't be paranoid anymore - thanks WINGADMIN !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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CrystalPistol
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Re: Over-winter storage .vs. valve springs....

Post by CrystalPistol »

Like said ..... valve springs installed as designed will be happy just left alone.

If however, one did just want to turn the engine over a little bit, pull the plugs, place in 5th, sit behind the bike and pull on lower rear wheel spokes.

Really ..... just as well leave her alone though.
Make Courtesy your "Code of the Road" …

… & Have a Safe Trip!
:)

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WingAdmin
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Re: Over-winter storage .vs. valve springs....

Post by WingAdmin »

CrystalPistol wrote:Like said ..... valve springs installed as designed will be happy just left alone.

If however, one did just want to turn the engine over a little bit, pull the plugs, place in 5th, sit behind the bike and pull on lower rear wheel spokes.

Really ..... just as well leave her alone though.
If you really want to do some good, just before the springtime first start-up, remove the plugs, squirt a couple tablespoons of oil into each plug hole, then turn the engine over by hand (as above, or by cranking the stator bolt on the back of the engine). This will help re-lubricate the cylinder walls, although the oil scraper rings will keep the majority of that inside the cylinder. You can also just crank the engine (plugs out), which will start pumping oil over all the critical parts, but without the pressure of compression (and ignition!) causing any wear. This is basically "pre-oiling" the engine. Then install the plugs and start 'er up!

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Solina Dave
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Re: Over-winter storage .vs. valve springs....

Post by Solina Dave »

WingAdmin wrote:Contrary to what a lot of people think, leaving a spring compressed within its design limits does not wear it out, or cause it to take a "set." What wears springs out is flexing - or use.
Steel is crystalline, and as it is repeatedly flexed and unflexed, the bonds between these crystals break down, until ht becomes weak enough that the steel fractures. But when it is flexed and just left that way, there is no movement occurring to break those bonds, so it does not cause a problem
Excellent write-up WingAdmin. I learn something new every day. Well done.

Thanks...........................Dave


"Assume Nothing"

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