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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i decided to tackle a leak that i had on my left crankcase cover, and im a bit stuck at the moment... so i got what is probably a dumb question that probably has a simple answer.

im at the point where i just need to start putting the main cover back with a new gasket and piece everything back together... however im having a rrrrreally hard time just simply getting the cover back on along with the gasket at the same time.... its a pretty large gasket so it just kinda bends all over the place making it difficult to even set it in place along with the cover, let alone reinsert all the bolts.
is it really this hard or am i just overly frustrated and heat exhausted at this point (high 90's today)??
how do u guys normally do this?
 

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i'm not a bike mechanic at all, but on a car I would use a very very very thin layer of high temp silicone on one of the pieces, and basically glue the gasket to it,
Like on a transmission oil pan I will put the gasket on and use clothes pins to hold it down while it dries. screw in the bolts a bit to make sure it is aligned properly, etc.
I cant stress enough that you need to make sure and use a very very thin amount of silicone, as when it is torqued down it will smash out every where if you use to much.

but again I have not really ever worked on a bike, but I've built my share of Race motors for my hotrods.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
oh, i had been trying to avoid using it figuring that any any loose silicone pieces could wonder around and clog an oil path somewhere.
does it need to be applied to the cover or to the crankcase? or does it not matter?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
also, probably a noob question too.
does all the old gasket material have to be COMPLETELY removed? i still have some bits here and there that i could get off? is there an easy method to this?
 

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ALL of the old gasket MUST COME OFF. All of it. Repeat. All of it. I use a single edge razor knife blade, but it is important that you do NOT put any nicks in the alumium case face. Nicks equal leaks.
 

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ALL of the old gasket MUST COME OFF. All of it. Repeat. All of it. I use a single edge razor knife blade, but it is important that you do NOT put any nicks in the alumium case face. Nicks equal leaks.
*1
I have found a good plastic putty knife works pretty good also.even the hardest ones are softer than the aluminum.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
how big of nicks are we talking about here?
i tried using a blade but stopped bc i saw a few very small shavings of aluminum...
are SMALL shavings okay? or absolutely none?
 

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If you're taking off aluminium you're creating a low spot in the sealing surface. This is not going to help the gasket seal. Sometimes you can get away with removing small slivers of the case, ie; if the blade is not perfectly parallel with the mating surface and you just knock off a small piece of the shoulder. Heavy on the sometimes.

Perhaps you should stick to the plastic scraper.
 

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As a professional technician, you must remove all the gasket and no, do not use silicone for the reason you stated. A spray adhesive is highly recommended. The best product is something sold only by NAPA and made by Permatex called Ultra Copper Spray. This product was originally designed for use on head gaskets used on aluminum heads. It will not only hold the gasket in place, it is designed to fill imperfections in the surface. I have used this on hundreds of gaskets on everything from Lawnmowers, motorcycles to MG restorations. Hang up the gasket and spray a thin coating on it. Let it dry for 10 to 15 minutes and hang it on the guide pins for the cover and reassemble the bike. Use a torque wrench and follow the factory torque specs and tightening pattern. If you do not have the pattern or none is specified, always do your final torque from center out in a clockwise pattern to prevent warping the cover. By the time you finish assembling everything it will be dry and leak free.
 

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Silicone is not always good on gaskets. I like to use a little grease on the gasket to hold it in place. I just did the same job on my VT1100 to get to the stator. There should be 2 dowels that hold the gasket in place also. I greased the gasket mainly in case my repair to the stator didn't work so I could save the gasket but grease will hold it in place.
 

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The theory is all paper gaskets are made to be installed dry. The reality is in many cases this is not practical. Sjef offers another viable option of using grease to hold a gasket in place. If you do ever need to access the area again the gasket will be reusable. Silicone can be uneven and cause torque issues, change the depth of a cover which may be critical in some cases, get onto threads of bolts and give false torque readings or get loose in a motor and clog oil flow. Grease allows for reusing the gasket but if there are imperfections in the surface you may end up with a leak. Spray adhesives will fill imperfections but are a one time installation because when they dry the gasket will tear coming back off. Of the 2 real options, pick the one that is best for your situation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
thanks for all the help guys! both mating surfaces are completely clear of old gasket now ended up using brake cleaner along with "goof off" and a wire brush. BTW plastic putty knife wasnt very effective.
Also, the gasket stuck on MUCH easily with the grease, decided not to use sealant. Went for the grease in case I need to take it apart again in the near future. (knock on wood).

OOOOOne last question. If I didnt achieve a good seal. Should I already see oil leaking?? I drained most of the oil before starting the job and havent filled her back up since the starter cover gasket hasnt yet arrived. Or will I not find out until everything is set with oil filled and bike running?
 
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