Kawasaki Vulcan Forum banner

1 - 20 of 26 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
696 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I'm curious about oil coolers and foundthis adapter on ebay.

Seems like it should work okay with a small cooling element, but dunno. Not even sure that I need an oil cooler. Maybe it's one of those things that is a "nice" but not really an "essential" add-on.

So, I'd like to hear your thoughts, especially from anyone that is using this adapter or other kind of oil cooler on their bike.

thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
75 Posts
Had one on my Yamaha 700 Maxim. Was air cooled, and it did make a difference. On a liquid cooled bike, I can't see it helping nearly as much
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
201 Posts
I would think that adding an oil cooler would only help the bike out. I imagine it would lower the operating temperature of the engine.

After looking at that particular adapter though, I also think it would place the oil filter too far forward preventing you from reattaching the regulator.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
696 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
I would think that adding an oil cooler would only help the bike out. I imagine it would lower the operating temperature of the engine.

After looking at that particular adapter though, I also think it would place the oil filter too far forward preventing you from reattaching the regulator.
I agree with you, on both counts. Obviously, the bike is designed to work without an oil cooler and the addition of a cooler would/should lower temps, but how much? Dunno. I'd have to measure the regulator clearance, but it wouldn't be a real big deal to relocate since a bracket would have to be made to affix the cooling fins.

Something to think about, I guess.

thanks
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
372 Posts
Seems like a waste of time to me on a liquid-cooled bike.
not entirely true, If you use the bike for long hauls you may want an oil cooler nut that tends to be on bikes that are used for long hauls and don't have the engine block as exposed as the vn900 does, ie sport touring bikes.

It wouldn't hurt to at least put a temperature gauge in to see what's it's running on your longer trips and see just how hot the oil is getting and if some kind of oil cooler could be of benefit.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
696 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Dunno if it's a waste of time or not. That's part of what I was hoping to find out by posting the question.

The engine isn't fully water cooled, only the top end is cooled. So, that means the lower end, including clutch, isn't cooled by anything other than air transfer.

What I know is that in the bad old days, most all of the motorheads that I knew, ran oil coolers for both engine and transmission in their cars. Most bikers I knew, were dirt racers and an oil cooler wouldn't work well in that application because it would add weight and be too easy to damage.

My thinking is that an ounce of prevention is worth pounds of cure. Cooler engines and trannys run better and last longer. But, if it's really not worth doing, then I'll save myself the time, effort and expense. I'd like to be as sure as I can, which is the right answer. I'm also thinking toward the future, as I have my eye on a V2k. :)

ride safe
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
295 Posts
Here's the way I look at it: if the engineers who designed the bike felt it needed one then it would have one on it. I had an oil cooler from the factory on my old '99 Nighthawk 750 but it was air cooled and needed all the help it could get. :)
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
474 Posts
This is interesting..... So after your place the adapter on to where the oil filter screws in, you still need to purchase the oil cooler and mount it where? I've done one long 5000 mile trip with my 900, and did not even think to be concerned about the oil getting too hot on a 500 6o 600 mile per day ride. I do know the weather was so hot that I pulled into a gas station and hosed myself down just to cool down a little during the heat of the day....
 

·
wocka, wocka, wocka
Joined
·
5,618 Posts
I would think that adding an oil cooler would only help the bike out. I imagine it would lower the operating temperature of the engine. After looking at that particular adapter though, I also think it would place the oil filter too far forward preventing you from reattaching the regulator.
tx, it would lower the oil temp and improve bottom end performance, ie bearings and other rotating parts. the coolant temp will remain same as the thermostat in the coolant loop is set for optimum head temperature. but you would be moving more heat away from the motor more efficiently.

also, just move the regulator to a different position on the bike. it does not need to be exactly where kaw happen to fit it in. kaw and others put them all over the place wherever they just happen to be more convenient. I move mine (rewire) to a more discrete location. yes they still get plenty air over.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
696 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
This is interesting..... So after your place the adapter on to where the oil filter screws in, you still need to purchase the oil cooler and mount it where? I've done one long 5000 mile trip with my 900, and did not even think to be concerned about the oil getting too hot on a 500 6o 600 mile per day ride. I do know the weather was so hot that I pulled into a gas station and hosed myself down just to cool down a little during the heat of the day....
I'm not concerned about normal driving, running down the road at 30 or higher. You're not stressing the engine and clutch very much doing that, unless you're redlining. :p

My concern is the stop and go city rush hour traffic, parades, parking lots, slow speed maneuvering practice, slipping the clutch type riding on hot days. See what I'm talking about at this link.

ride safe
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,130 Posts
Here's the way I look at it: if the engineers who designed the bike felt it needed one then it would have one on it. I had an oil cooler from the factory on my old '99 Nighthawk 750 but it was air cooled and needed all the help it could get. :)
Hi MINI, my '98 is still running like a top and I enjoy taking it out on our mountain roads. Here's one for you. You may remember yours had a three section oil cooler, mine too. The Japanese version of the CB750 has a six section oil cooler. Hmm. When I saw that I ordered the six section with the plumbing bits. In this climate it can't hurt. The question is why did Honda reduce the size of the cooler for American consumption?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,620 Posts
Here's a question I have (that is probably not applicable here but for the sake of discussion I'll throw it out there)

I was researching transmission coolers for my car to use when pulling a trailer. Talking to a few in-the-know and doing some research I was advised against it for the reason of what they call an 'oil to air' cooler, which is essentially what you all are describing, over-cooling the transmission, causing the fluid and components to not be up to operating temperature and therefore reducing efficiency and possibly causing parts to not be lubricated very well due to over-cooled fluid. Their advice was an oil-to-water cooler (which I have stock anyway) because the engines coolant operates at 186F, so the transmission (Designed to run from 175-210 IIRC) won't over-cool.

So, with that said, is it possible that an oil-to-air cooler included in the engine would overcool the engine oil, making it cooler than it was intended to run, meaning the engine isn't being lubricated as well as it should? Obviously during warm-up our oil is a little thicker and the engine can handle it, but most folks will tell you to go easy on an engine until it's warmed up, and when using heavy weight oil, to warm the engine up a bit before heading out. So I guess that's my question, with an oil cooler, would it be possible to over-cool the oil (since water doesn't run to the bottom end), reducing it's effectiveness?

Just food for thought. A temp gauge sounds like a good idea, but at the same time I really don't think our bikes run all that hot. I did a 4 hour ride last fall on a 80 degree day and when I got off the highway the fan wasn't running (obviously can't hear it to tell how often it was kicking on when on the interstate), didn't come on until I was putting through the town of my destination (lots of stop and go, 25 mile per hour roads) for 10 minutes or so. I never notice much leg heat. I'm all for an ounce of prevention being worth a pound of cure though, and oil coolers aren't that expensive, so it's an interesting discussion!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
292 Posts
I spoke with two Kawa service departments; both were astounded when I asked if only the top end of the engine is water cooled. According to them, the entire engine is water cooled; the cylinder fins are for esthetics and to offer some help with cooling.

Would I like to add an oil cooler? Love to. But, on my last trip through the Nevada desert (105 F ambient, including stretches where I could barely breathe because it was so hot), two up, 90+ the whole way, three mountain passes (7800, 7200 and 7100 ft), my temp light never came on and the bike never acted like she was running hot (sudden loss of power, sudden extra heat on the shin). So far, I don't think I need to add an oil cooler.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
372 Posts
It would be interesting to see exactly what parts of the block and so on that the water passes through to cool the motor. Would be very informative to see that...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,620 Posts
I'm not concerned about normal driving, running down the road at 30 or higher. You're not stressing the engine and clutch very much doing that, unless you're redlining. :p

My concern is the stop and go city rush hour traffic, parades, parking lots, slow speed maneuvering practice, slipping the clutch type riding on hot days. See what I'm talking about at this link.

ride safe

Good link! I had to figure that out to pass my motorcycle license test. I had to do the cone weave, but the 900 at idle, with an inexperienced rider, clutch all the way out, is not exactly a premier cone weave machine. I just COULD NOT maneuver that tight. I asked someone to help me, and they told me to slip the clutch. That was the ticket! Gave me better control of the speed of the bike and allowed me to weave around the cones in a very smooth manner without all the lurching and jerking I was doing before, and without going too fast to be able to handle the cone weave. (And when I took the MSF course afterwards I had already mastered that technique, so I got to be a step ahead and get some more practice on the maneuvers themselves being already a step ahead on clutch control)
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,130 Posts
It would be interesting to see exactly what parts of the block and so on that the water passes through to cool the motor. Would be very informative to see that...
Look no further than the shop manual under Cooling System, Coolant Flow Chart. Both heads and cylinders are included.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
295 Posts
Hi MINI, my '98 is still running like a top and I enjoy taking it out on our mountain roads. Here's one for you. You may remember yours had a three section oil cooler, mine too. The Japanese version of the CB750 has a six section oil cooler. Hmm. When I saw that I ordered the six section with the plumbing bits. In this climate it can't hurt. The question is why did Honda reduce the size of the cooler for American consumption?
Good question. Just guessing, the engineers must have thought that since we have so many interstates here and Japanese roads are pretty clogged that we wouldn't need the extra cooling.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
782 Posts
Here's a question I have (that is probably not applicable here but for the sake of discussion I'll throw it out there)

I was researching transmission coolers for my car to use when pulling a trailer. Talking to a few in-the-know and doing some research I was advised against it for the reason of what they call an 'oil to air' cooler, which is essentially what you all are describing, over-cooling the transmission, causing the fluid and components to not be up to operating temperature and therefore reducing efficiency and possibly causing parts to not be lubricated very well due to over-cooled fluid. Their advice was an oil-to-water cooler (which I have stock anyway) because the engines coolant operates at 186F, so the transmission (Designed to run from 175-210 IIRC) won't over-cool.

So, with that said, is it possible that an oil-to-air cooler included in the engine would overcool the engine oil, making it cooler than it was intended to run, meaning the engine isn't being lubricated as well as it should? Obviously during warm-up our oil is a little thicker and the engine can handle it, but most folks will tell you to go easy on an engine until it's warmed up, and when using heavy weight oil, to warm the engine up a bit before heading out. So I guess that's my question, with an oil cooler, would it be possible to over-cool the oil (since water doesn't run to the bottom end), reducing it's effectiveness?

Just food for thought. A temp gauge sounds like a good idea, but at the same time I really don't think our bikes run all that hot. I did a 4 hour ride last fall on a 80 degree day and when I got off the highway the fan wasn't running (obviously can't hear it to tell how often it was kicking on when on the interstate), didn't come on until I was putting through the town of my destination (lots of stop and go, 25 mile per hour roads) for 10 minutes or so. I never notice much leg heat. I'm all for an ounce of prevention being worth a pound of cure though, and oil coolers aren't that expensive, so it's an interesting discussion!
Your comments are correct that it is possible to over cool the oil in an engine. However, you are not going to run that risk on most warm riding days. I happen to get both the Metric and Harley versions of the J&P Cycles catalog sent to me. Oil coolers are a big thing on the Harleys because they are air cooled. Harley has even come up with a special solution on their newer bikes for hot days called a parade cycle. This is a firing cycle that engages when the engine gets to hot while idling. Basically, the engine starts firing only one piston and then the other on opposite cycles thus creating less heat than if both pistons were firing every time. It is really weird to hear a fat old Hog go from (potato..potato..potato) to sounding more like a lawn mower that is missing ever other cycle. Anyway, back to my original train of thought. In the J&P catalog section with the oil coolers are these little thermostatic bypass valves. The idea is that if the oil temp drops to a preset level while riding on a really cold day, the valve will stop sending oil to the cooler and just send it right back into the engine. So as you say, it is possible to over cool the oil, but someone has already thought of that and made a solution. A full oil cooler system will be an adapter at the oil filter, a bypass valve & the oil cooler itself.
 
1 - 20 of 26 Posts
Top