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Thread: Wet sumping question/hard to kick

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  1. #1

    Default Wet sumping question/hard to kick

    I just received my (recently rebuilt) '48 Chief last week and I'm getting familiar with the bike. Yesterday I took it out to the driveway to start it, and kicking it was a bear. I had a friend over (he is 180 Lbs, about 20 more than me) to help and there were times when we could absolutely stand on the kick starter and it wouldn't budge. I finally got it started and it smoked like crazy for 30 seconds or so but then cleared right up. It doesn't seem like this would be the result of a rich condition as that would usually clear up much sooner.

    So I came across the wet sumping issue during my web search. Would this (a) make the bike extremely hard to kick over, and (b) cause the excessive smoking upon start up? I also read about draining oil from the engine in case of wet sumping but I don't understand how to check this and what bolts/plugs to remove. Any detailed help (and even pix if possible) would be *greatly* appreciated.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Posts
    486

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    Drain the crankcase at the small plug on bottom left case.Fill tank to proper level.If you go to start,check level,if its low and not on the floor its filled the case.
    A slight drop of level is ok but if its a lot you need to drain before starting.If thats the case you need to discuss wet sumping repairs on a 48 pump.
    Tom

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Oak View, CA.
    Posts
    65

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    private message sent... check your box

  4. #4

    Default

    Would wet dumping make the bike harder to kick over?

    I’ll check that tonight. The bike was recently rebuilt, so the pump should be ok. But it sat on a transport truck for 1500 mi so that could have affected it too.

    Thanks!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Vermont
    Posts
    753

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lipdog View Post
    Would wet dumping make the bike harder to kick over?
    Probably! The Rider's Instruction Book shows where the two sump plugs are, the lower plug is for completely draining and the upper plug is for proper level. So if you pull the upper plug and lots of oil flows out then it's definitely wet sumped. The screws are hiding behind the primary and the frame near your clutch pedal, seen from underneath.

    Last edited by pisten-bully; 09-10-2019 at 10:39 AM.
    Pisten Bulley is Harry Roberts in Vermont.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Posts
    486

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    If the case has filled with oil ,flyweels dragging in oil ,it will be harder to kick.If its still hard drained then something else is tight.
    BTW wet sumping can also be caused running with low return flow allowing case to fill.This could be worn return pump,clogged sump pick up screen or loose fittings sucking air.
    Once you determine if tis standing or running wet sump you can fix.
    Even new pumps leak down if the ball valve is removed,which I do.This relies on the check valve to hold back the oil.The problem is even with a tight check valve seal the pump body is still flooded and with no seal in the pump drive shaft to 1/4" thick pump cover they still leak.
    The ball valve seals before the pump but you risk it not opening,so I put up with a little leak down.
    Tom

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Central Illinois, USA
    Posts
    4,342

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    Quote Originally Posted by tfburke3 View Post
    If the case has filled with oil ,flyweels dragging in oil ,it will be harder to kick....
    They get really hard to kick, Folks...

    When they are so full that there is no space to compress the volume of air beneath the pistons comin' down.

    ....Cotten
    AMCA #776
    Dumpster Diver's Motto: Seek,... and Ye Shall Find!

  8. #8

    Default

    Howdy sir,

    The 48-later aluminum pump is much more prone to wet sumping than its iron counterpart. As the Indian V twin uses the pumping action of piston movement to lubricate all components not directly served by the pump (timing side main and big end) case volume is rather small when measured at BDC compared to TDC. Essentially introducing a quart plus of oil into this small volume is making the engine nearly hydraulic itself when when the rider attempts to turn it over, forcing oil past the rings (smoking which cokes up your piston crowns) and anywhere else it can escape.

    I heartily recommend getting a kiwi ez drain and a dedicated 5 quart oil container and draining off after a ride if this machine is to sit at all. As that size container permits all the oil to be drained off, no measuring required when the next ride comes around, just pour it in and go. Besides the possibility of bending your kicker shaft, routinely starting a wet sumped motor adds to combustion residue as these low compression engines already running dirty do not build enough cylinder temp to burn all of it off. This can lead to hot spots of glowing carbon deposits and detonation, not to mention any breaking loose acting as grinding paste on your bores. Kiwi link below.
    https://www.kiwiindian.com/index.php...ilter-ez-drain

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Posts
    434

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    Peter, I was surprised you weren't at the Nashville run. Did I understand you sometime back that you might make the Yerba Buena run? Rich
    DrSprocket

  10. #10

    Default

    Remove top crankcase plug ( 1/8 pipe plug)from lower left hand crankcase excess oil will drain out once it quits dripping put plug back In you are ready to roll

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