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This thread will make you feel better about yourself

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As the title says, please let this thread help you feel better about yourself:

 

I put gear oil in gas mix :(

 

Got my first 2-Stroke a few months ago (2010 250XC),  and hadn't been able to ride much from family reasons. Had a chance to ride but I was tight on time, so I threw some oil in my jug and headed to the gas station on the way.......only I'm an idiot and I filled it with my gear oil (Honda 80W/85W). To make matters worse....I was thinking my measuring cup was set for 5 gallons, but it was at 2.5....which means I mixed 1:120 instead of 1:60. 

 

I road for about an hour or two, then let the bike sit for about 4 days before I realized it. As soon as I realized, I drained everything and got some good mix in there right away. 

 

Soooooo question of the day......what's the damage?

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Well it's tough to say without a tear down, how was the bike running at the end of the ride? From the sound of it, pretty good, Did your tank happen to have some premix left over from a previous ride? If so that could have helped your cause. Personally I'd do a compression test, pull the pipe and take a peek in the cylinder and if you see anything suspect pull the top end off. I could be way off but I would think the lower end bearings probably wouldnt be killed by this situation lot's of guys run 100:1 so 120:1 probably isn't that bad unless the fuel brakes down 4t oil in a different way then premix but I doubt it. 

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The bike still runs perfectly, so I'm really hoping that everything is OK. I wasn't able to get it fully warm (I usually smoke until it gets warm...don't know if this is normal) before I had to call it quits for the day, and it seemed a little smokier than normal, so tomorrow, I'll get it to full temp and see if I have extra smoke. If I think it's smoking more than normal, I'll pull the pipe. Don't have compression equipment, but I may be able to run one. 

 

I read one blurb that made it sound like gear oil would instantly turn to acid upon combustion and burn through your engine like thermite through a tank engine. Then I read something else that said running lean could cause engine seizure in minutes. Then I read the other side about how your engine can take just about anything and melded that with the fact that I saw no side effects yet. 

 

If you have any other thoughts, I'd love to hear more about it. 

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The bike still runs perfectly, so I'm really hoping that everything is OK. I wasn't able to get it fully warm (I usually smoke until it gets warm...don't know if this is normal) before I had to call it quits for the day, and it seemed a little smokier than normal, so tomorrow, I'll get it to full temp and see if I have extra smoke. If I think it's smoking more than normal, I'll pull the pipe. Don't have compression equipment, but I may be able to run one. 

 

I read one blurb that made it sound like gear oil would instantly turn to acid upon combustion and burn through your engine like thermite through a tank engine. Then I read something else that said running lean could cause engine seizure in minutes. Then I read the other side about how your engine can take just about anything and melded that with the fact that I saw no side effects yet. 

 

If you have any other thoughts, I'd love to hear more about it. 

i bet my house on it your bike is 100% fine. Just empty the gas tank and carburetor bowl. Put new fresh gas with proper two stroke oil in it and fire it up.

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how does one make the mistake of putting gear oil in gas instead of premix? lol

 

I hope your bike turns out ok. If it does, it sort of says something about the reliability of these bikes. Keep us posted.

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Pretty funny stuff... I have done a few bonehead things like that before. Once I was on a road trip, pulled up to a gas station on my Harley 883 and filled up the tank without noticing which pump I had pulled up to.  Got down the road about a mile or so before the bike just up and quit on me. Called a tow truck to get me to a dealership about 50 miles away. Sat in their waiting room for an hour before I happened to look at the receipt where in big bold letters, it said DIESEL. Just had to hang my head and go tell the service adviser, which was a good thing as they were just about to tear everything apart. 

 

As for your problem, I don't think you really have a problem considering that you had used such a heavy weight oil. The first thing to consider is the logic of what others have said about "burning" gear oil and its effect on the engine. Gear oil has to get really hot before it will actually burn in the cylinder, way hotter than the normal operating temperature of the engine. Just think about a crank seal going out and sucking oil into the bottom end on a 2 stroke. It will smoke, and oil will build up in the pipe and silencer (and probably run like shit) but won't really hurt the piston, ring(s), or cylinder wall. Logical, right?

 

So next, lets consider what damage may have been caused by the possibility of running such a lean mixture. The reason for mixing oil with the fuel in a two stroke is to lube the bottom end and under side of the piston during operation because the crank case is part of the intake track as there is no oil sump like on 4 stroke engines. The only reasonable way to get lubrication to the moving parts in this part of the engine is to add oil to the fuel. Normal premix oil is usually in the 30w range so it will burn in the combustion chamber. Because you used such a heavy weight oil that doesn't really burn like pre-mix does, I don't think there was any real damage done, even running it at such a lean ratio of 120:1... Rather the opposite, over lubrication of the bottom end, is more likely the scenario considering that the engine is smoking a little more than normal and there is probably a nice protective coat of lube in the bottom and top ends of the engine as well as the entire exhaust track. 

 

The only way to really know for sure what, if any, damage was done is to grab a hand full of tools and do a little recon. The bottom end and exhaust track are really not as serious an issue as the cylinder, piston, and ring(s) and inspecting them is really not all that hard, so lets start there...

-Remove the spark plug and inspect. Things to look out for are little specs of aluminum on the porcelain tip of the plug (bad) and for color (chocolate or darker= good, milky brown= okay, light tan or white= bad)

-Remove the ignition/stator cover, and the exhaust pipe. Inspect the cylinder wall, piston skirts, cylinder head and ring for wear or damage. Inspection is done by looking through the exhaust port with a flashlight and a small mirror. You can turn the engine over by turning the stator by hand with the spark plug removed. Look for black or dark scoring marks on the piston and cylinder walls, melting of the rings or top of the piston, and specs of aluminum or melting in the bowl of the cylinder head (any of which are bad things and may require reconditioning of the top end and further inspection of the bottom end).

 

By doing this, you will have a better understanding of the ACTUAL condition of the top end. If everything checks out and looks okay, further inspection is really not warranted as any damage that was possibly done will show up in these area before it shows up anywhere else. Slap everything back together, INSTALL A NEW SPARK PLUG, and go for a ride, but keep close attention to the performance of the engine. If anything changes or becomes suspicious in the next 20 miles or so, take it in for service. 

 

Hope this helps.

Edited by Runt424
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I would run it for the rest of the season then do a top end on it. I bet it wore a little excessive for the time you rode it (2 hours of riding that caused 10 hours worth of wear or something like that)

 

One of those live and learn situations. Don't beat yourself up, just don't do it again :ride:

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it doesnt matter about the gear oil. When I was a kid you used regular motor oil for your pre-mix, we didnt have fancy oils. The ratio could matter tho, although you probly still had some regulat mix left in the tank. But, if it was still running good, not losing power or getting loud then i would not worry about it and keep on riding.

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Well, one 30 mile hare scramble later, I think I'm in the clear. Ran like a dream for a solid 1:30 race in the woods. No over heating, no loss of power, no mystery ailments.

I tend to go with the 612Rob logic on these things. Even if I opened it up and saw some extra wear, I would wait to the end if the season to do the top end. Like others said, prolly shouldn't be a problem for the bottom end.

I'll pull the plug and expansion chamber, but that's prolly as far as I'll go for now. Thanks guys. Hope you all feel better about your less stupid mistakes now. Looks like the 'ol XC will live to fight another day....despite me best efforts to the contrary!!!! Hahah

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Well, one 30 mile hare scramble later, I think I'm in the clear. Ran like a dream for a solid 1:30 race in the woods. No over heating, no loss of power, no mystery ailments.

I tend to go with the 612Rob logic on these things. Even if I opened it up and saw some extra wear, I would wait to the end if the season to do the top end. Like others said, prolly shouldn't be a problem for the bottom end.

I'll pull the plug and expansion chamber, but that's prolly as far as I'll go for now. Thanks guys. Hope you all feel better about your less stupid mistakes now. Looks like the 'ol XC will live to fight another day....despite me best efforts to the contrary!!!! Hahah

I'll feel better about my dumbass mistakes if I get as lucky as you did, however with my luck they seem to hit me in the pocket book unlike your lucky ass. Good story for the future though... On second thought you may be better off not telling yoru buddies  this story if you ever want to borrow anything, or live it down. 

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don't worry, she's probably fine. Lots of people have run straight gas by mistake and their engines still OK, there is still oil coating the insides of your bottom end that takes a bit to wear off. People used to run straight motor oil before premix. And besides, at 120:1 you actually richened the mixture not leaned it, less oil means more gas. I would keep riding as normal, don't bother with a top end. I run 50:1 or 60:1 on my bike and it runs perfect, just like the manual says. I've always found that 30:1 means splooge everywhere and a lot of fouled plugs, hard to tune, hard to start. 

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Hell I run 100:1 in mine all the time.  Been runnin it that way for near 10 years..  But I use a 2 stroke oil not trannny stuff.  I highly doubt that you did any damage at all to your bike.  And yes while theoretically less oil means more gas, jetting wise it doesn't make enough difference to worry about..

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