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So I was riding my winter bike home a few weeks ago (a Yamaha WR250 with 40,000 miles of winter riding so far) and started to notice a tick-tick-tick when about 15 miles from home.

I had the valves checked/adjusted at 30,000 miles (all spot on except for a mild adjustment to the exhaust valves that could have been left alone but since we're in there anyway...(tired of these side-thoughts (my editor wouldn't allow this), yet?)), but didn't replace the internal timing chain. So, I was thinking, "crap, is that the timing chain getting ready to go?", and made sure I was ready to pull in the clutch, and just kept riding. It's only 15 more minutes. Maybe I'll make it.

Don't do that people. If your bike is wrong. Stop. Evaluate. Make it right, right _NOW_!

But I never learn. This time the main drive chain broke and I was pushing my bike a few miles to Arby's where I ate sliders and waited for my wife to bring the truck.

I had a newish chain and sprockets so I was really worried that it was an internal part. What does it say about my maintenance that I'm happy when the drive chain brakes? I really don't treat my winter beater as good as I should.

So now I have a hole I need to fix. I wore a grove that leaks oil when the master link on the chain started to back out and scrape each time around the front sprocket.

I'm not a wrench beyond changing oil, tires, chain, brakes, etc. All the outside-the-engine stuff I'm comfortable with but I'm just cracking open my first engine case this winter (a RS50 Aprilia). Not knowing about engine internals, is the oil in that part of the engine under pressure? Should I just try to JB Weld it closed or is there a way to fill in the groove with new aluminum?

I've asked a few welders and nobody wants to try it as they think the case will just melt and I'll be left with a worse mess.

Ideas?

Thanks,
Kent Larson from Minnesota
(looks like snow next week so I need my WR back on the road soon)
 

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once i was visiting my mom in the country. she has a log home up a mile long gravel driveway that would likely qualify as off-roading to most.

at the time i was driving an 02 vw jetta that was uber slammed. : ) like a couple "s clearance on flat ground. lol i went slooooooow and made it up this driveway all the way to the top with barely a scrape. this driveway is 80% steep hill btw.

once at the top where it flattened out for the last 200 yards i thought i was home free. that was about the time the front tire went in a hole popped up out of the hole and the front end dropped on a 3" bolder directly under the aluminium oil pan.

i didnt know it was smashed until i went to leave and there was an oil trail leading from my car back to the rock that busted my oil pan.

it was not a small hole either. id say like 1/4-3/8th" wide and about 2-3" long where the rock just split the oil pan when the front end came down on it.

so an hour+ from home or anyplace for that matter i remembered i had a pack of jb weld in my glovebox.

i found an old metal window screen n cut out a 3x3" piece to use as reinforcement. all the oil had leaked out thru that opening. i cleaned the area well with some rubbing alcohol. mixed the jb n let it set up slightly. put a thin coat in and around the gaping hole, put the screen reinforcement and continued to put the rest of the jb weld covering the split and screen.

waited 4 hours n filled my car with oil my mom luckily had on hand.

i drove the car like that for at least 2 years with never a drop leaked until i was cruising in a local riverfront park where they had just put in new speed bumps but hadnt painted them yet. those long humps. i hit it going about 25mph n nearly caught air with the front end and when it came down it completely smashed the oil pan at the bolts all the way around. there wasnt any jb welding that.

i was more than impressed with the jb weld tho. i put it on there hoping itd get me home or to a shop but it held great so i didnt see any reason to drop 350$ on the new pan. it was a serious gash where that rock pushed up into the pan. not some hair line crack but a gaping split.

i was carefull not to push a ton of the jb weld into the hole but did push some into it to try n be sure it filled the crack to help prevent leaking. jb weld is no joke tho. like i said it was on my aluminum oil pan for more than 2 years and never leaked. i dont know how long it would have lasted but i was impressed with it.
 

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If it's just a groove worn away by the link with no large circular hole, I would probably go with the JB weld. You should be good to go with that. I would probably go a step further and once th JB is set up I would smear a layer of Honda bond over the repair as added leak insurance.

And Kevin, that's a pretty good testament of properly set up JB weld:thumb:
 

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jb weld is no joke tho. like i said it was on my aluminum oil pan for more than 2 years and never leaked. i don't know how long it would have lasted but i was impressed with it.
If it's just a groove worn away by the link with no large circular hole, I would probably go with the JB weld. You should be good to go with that. I would probably go a step further and once the JB is set up I would smear a layer of Honda bond over the repair as added leak insurance.

And Kevin, that's a pretty good testament of properly set up JB weld:thumb:
Thanks guys. I guess I'll try the JB Weld with Honda Bond. Can't make things worse.

I calculated that the fuel savings from riding the WR250R (50 mpg) vs. my Dodge Ram (18 mpg) would pay for the bike after 32,384 miles even with maintenance costs figured in. Since I've already put on over 40,000 miles, it's a free bike!

Now my goal is to get it to last until I can buy a WR450R here in the US. It's been sold in Europe for a few years now so there's hope we will get it sometime. Anyone know how to import a bike? Maybe I should be searching for a deal on a used 2012-2014 model and bring it in.

Later,
Kent Larson in Minnesota
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Here's a picture of the groove worn into the case. Does anyone know if the oil behind the groove is under pressure and how hi that pressure would be?

Later,
Kent Larson in Minnesota
 

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i couldnt tell you how much pressure but there definitely is. i wouldnt think its anymore than there was on my jetta's engine tho. as bad as that looks its a mear scratch compared to the hole that was in my oil pan. plus there looks like plenty of nooks n crannies for the jb weld to grab onto.

youll just need to clean that area all the way down to bare metal. of course the jb wont stick well to any oil/grim coated surfaces. start with wd40 n then use alcohol to get the wd40 off. put a good layer of the jb on it and spread it as far as you can without covering anything important.

my main concern when i was doing my car was how well was the jb going to bond to the aluminum. so i spread it far and wide to try n increase the surface area the jb had to grab hold of the metal. once the jb has dried you can shape it if need be by sanding it. looks like youve got plenty of room to get a good glob of it on there. it wont be pretty but im confident its will work great in this situation provided you get it cleaned really well where you apply it. best to let it setup for like 12 hours before you test it. 24 would be even better.
 
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