94 1500- using oil - Kawasaki Vulcan Forum : Vulcan Forums
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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 11-03-2008, 09:54 PM Thread Starter
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Location: Wyoming MN
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94 1500- using oil

Hello, I'm new here, but hope to become a familiar sight. I've had my Vulcan for the summer now, and have noticed I go through a lot of oil. The only thing I have done, I removed the stock baffles so I could hear the damn thing, I do see little puffs of smoke but it's usually when I first start her up when the choke is on. Do I see a re-build in the near future? I ran it from Duluth MN to home on the freeway, about 2 hours, with a couple stops and I used probably a quart. I run 20w50 Sportline Motorcycle oil

1994 Vulcan 88 A
Still Stock
1992 Buick Roadmaster
Mild Custom
Patriot Guard Rider
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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 02-02-2009, 12:57 AM
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Oil Usage

I purchased a 1996 1500A with 3,600mi in 2001 it also had excessive oil use, puffing on start, and had intermitant lifter noise from front cylinder.
Altough light oil usage is common on 1500A (88) engines there is a commom problem that can be fixed to correct more excessive problem.
What I found was rocker cover gasket internally blown out at pressure port. This was feeding mainline oil pressure into rocker box. The dainback hole in head is not large enough to cover the oil volume and pressure buildup. This causes oil to push past valve seals. It also can lower oil pressure to lifters on affected cylinder. The pressure will also cause gasket to blow externally, which is how I found my problem. After gasket replacement my problems disapered until rear cylinder did the same thing at about 20,000mi. I have talked to several other owners that had same problem and found this to fix it. I now have near 70,000mi and my oil usage is about 1 quart every 2,000mi mostly due to wear caused by high speed long distance rides.
The gasket change is a job that requires time and patients but can be done without engine removal (6 to 10 hrs labor). I suggest bonding gasket firmly to cover for installation to prevent repeat of problem and ease of installation.
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