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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone. I'm a long time reader, first time poster. I have a top right side oil leak coming from the back of the motor (I think that's stated correctly), and I was hoping to get some suggestions (with detailed instructions/pics) on how to trace it down and find/fix it. I don't have much experience, besides maintenance, so as detailed as you can be would be helpful.

She's a 2002 Meanie with 38K miles. Lots of mods, but I couldn't say what exactly, because that's how I bought her a couple of years ago. Haven't had a single problem until she started losing/burning oil (but there was NEVER any under it). I think I may have overfilled it when I was away from home, but I can't be sure. All I know is it is MUCH worse since I changed the oil (cleaner/thinner oil? - I used 10-40), and it only leaks when it's running. I tried to get the whole engine and close ups of the trouble area so you can see what mods were done and (hopefully) point me in the right direction.

Please forgive my ignorance here. I'm a do-er...not a take-it-in-er...so I learn as I go. Since I haven't had any problems...I haven't learned much about working on bikes. If I need to remove parts, step-by-step instructions are appreciated.

You can see in the pics that the oil is essentialy STREAMING down under the cover (over that circle where the top fins have a break in them), then its going over the rear exhaust and dripping down onto the case. When I'm riding, it is getting everywhere.

Please help if you can. Thanks in advance.

~ Jen
 

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That little black circle is a known source of oil leaks, but it's hard to tell if it's that or maybe the rocker cover gasket that's right under the chrome cover.

If it's coming from the circle (the cam journal), there's a thread here regarding similar symptoms, and some have had good luck covering it with a plate stuck on with RTV.

To fix it properly, or if it's the rocker cover gasket, requires removing the engine. It's a fair amount of work but with a wheel chock and lift, it's really not as bad as it sounds. Vulcan Engine Removal
 

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4Jenn; looks like the oil is pooling at the journal. Lee has given you some great info. and you will need to completely remove the motor to get the rocker boxes off the rear cylinder. I would replace the journals, rocker box gaskets and cover gaskets on both cylinders. No sense risking a repaet on the front.

You should be able to loosen the cam chain tensioners enough to remove the journals and replace them. They're sealed with silicone (OEM). I just used a light coating of Gasket sealer when I did my motor. Worked fine.

The entire job can be done in a day or less if you have the parts and tools at your disposal.

Best wishes with the repair.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
That little black circle is a known source of oil leaks, but it's hard to tell if it's that or maybe the rocker cover gasket that's right under the chrome cover.

If it's coming from the circle (the cam journal), there's a thread here regarding similar symptoms, and some have had good luck covering it with a plate stuck on with RTV.

To fix it properly, or if it's the rocker cover gasket, requires removing the engine. It's a fair amount of work but with a wheel chock and lift, it's really not as bad as it sounds. Vulcan Engine Removal
Thank you lee...I located the thread that shows how to do this...from 2011...and we used what we had. We cut thin aluminum large enough to cover the circle (cam journal, as you correctly termed it), then we smeared black gasket maker all over it and stuck it on. It's supposed to cure 24 hrs but I had a toy run to go on 10 hrs later...so that's all it got ?.

So far, so good. It ran 70 miles and was at idle for long stints, and it seems to have fixed it for now. I know it's just a bandaid, but user "jgrazjgraz" put this bandaid on five years ago and posted this July that it's still holding...lol.

And a great thanks to "jgrazjgraz" for posting his trials and errors with this temporary (potentially long term) fix.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
4Jenn; looks like the oil is pooling at the journal. Lee has given you some great info. and you will need to completely remove the motor to get the rocker boxes off the rear cylinder. I would replace the journals, rocker box gaskets and cover gaskets on both cylinders. No sense risking a repaet on the front.

You should be able to loosen the cam chain tensioners enough to remove the journals and replace them. They're sealed with silicone (OEM). I just used a light coating of Gasket sealer when I did my motor. Worked fine.

The entire job can be done in a day or less if you have the parts and tools at your disposal.

Best wishes with the repair.
Thanks for the reply Marauder. The email notification reminded me to get back on here to thank "lee" and post an update.

So far so good. Hopefully the fix will hold quite a while. I'd like to avoid taking out my engine as long as possible. (Because I don't know if it will go back together once i do...lol)

- Jen
 

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Thanks for the reply Marauder. The email notification reminded me to get back on here to thank "lee" and post an update.

So far so good. Hopefully the fix will hold quite a while. I'd like to avoid taking out my engine as long as possible. (Because I don't know if it will go back together once i do...lol)

- Jen
Glad ya got it to stop leaking. The temp/longterm fix does work. For how long is anyone's guess but, worth it even if only for a while. The permanent fix is more involved. Once engine is out, remove rocker covers, remove chain adjusters. To be able to remove the cam plugs you have to remove rocker box's. When doing this you are removing all the head stud nuts. This alone untourques the head, so then you will need head gaskets as well. The rocker box and head are a machined surface, no gasket, only rtv to seal it. The plugs and both head and rocker box takes a bit to remove all the cheap rtv that kawasaki used. Also since it's down that far may as well freshen up the rings. Get the cylinders cleaned up and honed, new rings, new base gaskets. Of course you don't need to do rings, but to do cam plugs, it's pretty involved.

Sent from my SM-N900T using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Glad ya got it to stop leaking. The temp/longterm fix does work. For how long is anyone's guess but, worth it even if only for a while. The permanent fix is more involved. Once engine is out, remove rocker covers, remove chain adjusters. To be able to remove the cam plugs you have to remove rocker box's. When doing this you are removing all the head stud nuts. This alone untourques the head, so then you will need head gaskets as well. The rocker box and head are a machined surface, no gasket, only rtv to seal it. The plugs and both head and rocker box takes a bit to remove all the cheap rtv that kawasaki used. Also since it's down that far may as well freshen up the rings. Get the cylinders cleaned up and honed, new rings, new base gaskets. Of course you don't need to do rings, but to do cam plugs, it's pretty involved.

Sent from my SM-N900T using Tapatalk
Thanks for the info and instructions speedracer. I think I might just send it to the shop if the fix doesn't last and I can't get the leak to stop. I like to fix stuff when I can...but I think tackling that might create more problems for me. I did private message jgrazjgraz to thank him for the 2011 post and told him what I used (it was what I had on hand). He did say that his fix...holding 5+ years now...was to use a thicker aluminum, cut with a saw, clean the cam plug of all oil and (previously attempted) sealants, and then use Permatex's "The Right Stuff" on the metal plate before you stick it on.

As I said before, I just used a tube of black gasket maker and thin sheet aluminum cut with scissors. It looks like "the Right Stuff" advertises that you don't need to wait for it to be used...cures in 1 minute. I may try that when I seal the front plug (OR if the rear plug seal ends up failing on me). My boyfriend pointed out the leak from the front plug...but it's not nearly as bad as the rear was. Oil was literally STREAMING over the plug when sitting at idle...it was BAD!
 

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Thanks for the info and instructions speedracer. I think I might just send it to the shop if the fix doesn't last and I can't get the leak to stop. I like to fix stuff when I can...but I think tackling that might create more problems for me. I did private message jgrazjgraz to thank him for the 2011 post and told him what I used (it was what I had on hand). He did say that his fix...holding 5+ years now...was to use a thicker aluminum, cut with a saw, clean the cam plug of all oil and (previously attempted) sealants, and then use Permatex's "The Right Stuff" on the metal plate before you stick it on.

As I said before, I just used a tube of black gasket maker and thin sheet aluminum cut with scissors. It looks like "the Right Stuff" advertises that you don't need to wait for it to be used...cures in 1 minute. I may try that when I seal the front plug (OR if the rear plug seal ends up failing on me). My boyfriend pointed out the leak from the front plug...but it's not nearly as bad as the rear was. Oil was literally STREAMING over the plug when sitting at idle...it was BAD!
Yep, pesky leak to say the least. Nothing wrong with the fix you did. And glad ya like the scoot. Lots of these on the highway. jgrazjgraz, has had good luck with the repair for sure.

Sent from my SM-N900T using Tapatalk
 

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The other thing to note is aprox which part of the plug is leaking. Mine was on the top,12oclock position. That's why I had so much trouble cleaning it out and getting the silicon up there. My fingers just couldn't bend backwards that much. When you locate the actual breach,that's where u need to really clean thoroughly.
 
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