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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I recently sold my Harley so my daughter gave(gifted) me her Intruder with less than 7K miles on it. Beautiful bike and starts right up. After they (daughter and her husband) trailered it to me and unloaded it, she noticed a small oil spot on my garage floor under the bike. She frowned and said she hadn't seen that before. We cleaned it up and put a paper towel under it to see if it would tell us where the leak was coming from. It has made another spot, but it took a day or so to make the oil drip spot. Checking the oil plug, there was NO oil leaking from it. The oil seems to be dripping on the side area near the kick stand. I haven't put the bike on a lift and it is very low to the floor, as many know. I haven't registered it yet, so it is not as easy as taking it to a shop to have it checked. I am in the process of tagging it and will likely have to take it to a shop, but thought someone else might have had the same experience.
Question: Anyone have a likely idea as to where the very slow leak is coming from? It almost seems to be collecting on the bottom of the bike frame and then dripping. Not sure. As soon as I can get some stuff moved out of the way, I plan to put it on my bike lift to see if that will give me a chance to see better, but right now I can't get to the lift.
Edited: Looks like the leak is located behind the water pump assembly, dripping from the bike frame? Hope that helps a bit to anyone familiar with a possible idea as to what is causing the oil leak or where it actually might be coming from. Thanks.
 

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I don't think I would worry about it too much ......yet.
It might have gotten shaken around during transit enough to put some oil where it should not be.
Check the air intake housing. Sometimes the PCV system will cause some oil accumulation there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I don't think I would worry about it too much ......yet.
It might have gotten shaken around during transit enough to put some oil where it should not be.
Check the air intake housing. Sometimes the PCV system will cause some oil accumulation there.
Thank you. I'll check it out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Well, I still have to remove the water pump cover but it looks as if the liquid (oil or coolant) is narrowed down to the area beneath or around the water pump. I wiped off as much under the bike as I could and placed a paper towel under it to see if I can pinpoint the drip. 24hrs and no drip yet. Like I said, I still need to remove the pump cover and see if I can locate the weep hole. Maybe it is coming from the weep hole and I will have to rebuild the pump/replace the seals. Hard to find anything on this model and tips on rebuilding it. I have found a couple of YouTube vids that show similar rebuilds. Would like to find a good deal on water pump parts in case that is the problem. Seems like you can't find the whole pump as a replacement, just parts.
 

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Was just going to mention the weep hole....could be a slight blockage causing excess pressure build up....might even have cleared since running the motor and or moving the bike around. Check the radiator cap for the seal sticking too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Was just going to mention the weep hole....could be a slight blockage causing excess pressure build up....might even have cleared since running the motor and or moving the bike around. Check the radiator cap for the seal sticking too.
Thank you. Hopefully, your suggestion is correct and it saves me a bit of money. The bike had been garage kept for years so no telling what kind of mischief that caused, just sitting. This bike only has almost 6700 mileage on it. Practically a new - Old bike.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hello, just a spitball here... Does the bike have an aftermarket chain oiler installed? If yes, have you checked to see if the oil is coming from that?
Thanks for responding. I have no idea if it has an aftermarket chain oiler. According to my daughter, the bike had been garaged for years and only has about 6.5k miles on it. She gave it to me and it starts right up and runs great. I haven't put tags on it yet and have already started modifying it (looks). We noticed right after she trailered it to my home 9hrs distance that it had a small leak. She said that she had not noticed any leaks in the past. Dummy me, I wanted to check the weep hole at the water pump so I decided to remove the chrome cover to get a better look at the pump. As soon as I removed the lower bolt, the coolant started flowing freely out of the bolt hole. Thank goodness I had a pie tin under the bike to collect the small leak and it filled that up pretty fast before I was able to replace the bolt. At least the coolant is still clear and clean. It's been so darn hot and humid so It's difficult to work on it very long, and work on my other projects. I'll post what I discover to be the cause of the leak as soon as I find it. This bike is much closer to the ground than any of my Harleys were.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
After cleaning up the bottom of the bike a bit, it took about 24hrs+ to make a small spot of the floor(paper towel) that was more near the center rather than the water pump. The bike had been ridden very few miles since the last oil change so the oil is very clear/clean right now. So, since the spot is not green like the coolant, rather a bit tan like very weak tea, I take it that I am searching for an oil leak. I think I have ruled out the water pump as the source of the leak. I am open for new suggestions as to where the oil leak might be coming from. Since it is on the kick stand, I figure that the oil could be running down the bottom a bit before falling onto the floor. I still haven't been able to raise the bike to get under it yet. And I haven't registered it so I can't drive it to a shop, yet. By the way, I have ruled out the drain plug as it is still dry.
 

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I think you are worrying about this tiny leak WAY too much at this point.
When it is ridden some, it may disappear on it's own.

But if you insist on chasing it now, clean the engine up good and let it dry and then try to coat the whole engine with flour or baby powder. Let it sit undisturbed for a couple of days and the leaking oil should leave a "path" in the powder pointing directly to where it is coming from.

Have you inspected the air box and vacuum hoses yet ?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I think you are worrying about this tiny leak WAY too much at this point.
When it is ridden some, it may disappear on it's own.

But if you insist on chasing it now, clean the engine up good and let it dry and then try to coat the whole engine with flour or baby powder. Let it sit undisturbed for a couple of days and the leaking oil should leave a "path" in the powder pointing directly to where it is coming from.

Have you inspected the air box and vacuum hoses yet ?
Nope, I haven't checked the "air box" or the vacuum hoses. Apparently, this bike came from a dealer and was serviced, before my daughter took possession of it. She is the one that noticed the oil leak first and said that she doesn't think that it leaked while sitting in her garage. She probably didn't run it more than a couple hundred miles before she bought a Vstrom and loves it. I know that I am being anal about the little leak but I haven't had a leaky bike since my old '68 Royal Enfield that I had rebuilt and it still leaked everywhere I parked it, as well as during my ride. None of my other bikes ever leaked. I park it in the garage and have a clean, painted floor and want to try and keep it that way. I am going to try any reasonable suggestion to find and fix the leak, so I am grateful for your idea. I think this is the lowest bike I have ever owned and my old bones have a lot of fun with me, when I try to get up off the floor. I might just tag it and end up running it up to a shop where someone else can figure it out. Thank you for your response.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Update:
I was able to move things around in my garage and squeeze the bike lift under the VS800. Even then I couldn't find the weep hole. I started over again with wiping the bottom of the bike free of dirt and grease, since I was able to get to it easier now. I used my phone camera to search for the weep hole and a flash light. Finally, I found the little spot that looked like a spot of black grease. I wiped it down real well and got a good look at it. It is so far concealed by the other stuff around it, that I could barely make it out. I used a little thin wire with a hook on it to make sure it really was the weep hole.....it was. Looking around it, I discovered some clean oil, a very thin coat down the engine appearing to come from it, but not sure since I cleaned it mostly off. I was able to stuff a clean paper towel up under the hole and another one on the floor, just in case I am wrong. I will check it tomorrow, since it takes that long to get a silver dollar size spot of oil on the paper. Maybe this wont be so bad after all, if I only need to replace the seals (mostly the oil seal ) in the water pump. If this is the case, then the price of the seals is a heck of a lot less than the whole pump. And I would never trust a used one, because I would probably end up with the same problem. I have no doubt that if it is the oil seal in the water pump, it was caused by sitting in the previous owner's garage for so many years. It only has 6500 miles on it, which is nothing on a '97 bike. It ain't gonna be solved unless I see oil on the paper tomorrow or the day after.
 

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If this is the case, then the price of the seals is a heck of a lot less than the whole pump.
And I think that might be "penny wise and pound foolish".
I would never do that......unless maybe a new pump just was not available.
Good luck.

AND.....like I said before, if it is run for a bit, those seals might swell up a bit and fix themselves.
 
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks Easy Rider, I have no doubt you are correct. This really IS a clean bike, considering the age on it. The frame looks new, with hardly any dust on it and shiny. It was purchased by my daughter from a dealer so they must have done a pretty good service on it, oil change, battery, coolant, etc. The coolant looks fresh, the oil clean. The little dirt that I cleaned off the bottom was very slight, like she might have driven it a hundred miles, plus or minus. I would like to think that driving it will freshen up the seals on it. But, I guess I have gotten used to a clean and leak free bike. I did have a '68 Enfield when I rode on the weekends in New Delhi, India when I was posted over there, and it leaked no matter what I did to it, especially after a riding into the afternoon on a hot day. And it really did get hot over there. All my Harleys were younger models and never leaked so I got spoiled. Guess I have gotten a bit picky in my old age. I do have a rubber mat in my garage where I have the bike parked while I "personalize" it. Interesting how much it looks like an old Sportster I owned recently. But, I digress. I have not checked out the local bike shops in the area, regarding parts purchases. I have been searching on line to get an idea of the price of a new water pump and it looks like they run around a $140 plus shipping. I imagine that the pump on the bike is like new, other than the possible seal deterioration. Maybe dry rot? Even though, I would normally consider purchasing a new pump in any other situation, I figured that this one looks fairly easy to replace the seals. I figured that the bearings should be OK, taking into consideration the low mileage. Of course, I am always open to opinions of those with more experience on these issues than myself(which is not so much). I am not committed to any action yet, until I prove the location of the oil leak. I am pretty sure that the leak originates from the weep hole in the pump, but today or tomorrow I will know for sure.
Thanks again for your input. I really do appreciate it, and I appreciate this forum too.
 
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