Tried changing spark plugs on vacation. Bike apart can’t get plugs out - BMW F800 Riders Forum & Registry



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  1. #1
    CTATV's Avatar
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    So got my fairings and airbox torn off and can’t get my plugs out. Got a plug socket that the new plug fits in just fine but won’t get socket. After reading on here apparently it’s too thick? I’m nowhere near a BMW dealership in upstate NY; where can I get a socket that would work? What size?

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  3. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by CTATV View Post
    So got my fairings and airbox torn off and cant get my plugs out. Got a plug socket that the new plug fits in just fine but wont get socket. After reading on here apparently its too thick? Im nowhere near a BMW dealership in upstate NY; where can I get a socket that would work? What size?

    You need a cheap thin walled socket, 16mm is the metric size. I lucked out and used a 5/8 worked fine just slid down and was able to grasp the plug no problem. Be extra careful with connecting and disconneting the wiring boot, let us know how it works out.

  4. #3
    Tepic, Nayarit - Mxico Willy is offline F800Riders.org Supporter
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    Hi !!.. I have same bike as Yours. Years ago I purchased several bike specific tools in Wunderlich America. They have been very useful thru all these years. Although not cheap they are a good investment. Saludos desde Mxico !!

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  7. #4
    notacop is offline The original Schwartz Wald Troll
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    Why are you changing plugs on the road? Plugs can last for decades and 10's of thousands miles. I finally changed the plugs on my Wee Strom at 80K miles just because I had them and I was having the valves checked. In my 4Runner I have 190K miles and had the plugs changed once.
    Unless the bike isn't running you are making your own problem.

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    I bought a socket from home depot and ground it down on a bench grinder. Worked perfectly, was cheaper than the 'special' socket and took about 5 minutes of my time.

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    One of the reasons for pulling plugs occasionally, even if you don't replace them, is to prevent them from seizing in the head.

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  12. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by notacop View Post
    Why are you changing plugs on the road? Plugs can last for decades and 10's of thousands miles. I finally changed the plugs on my Wee Strom at 80K miles just because I had them and I was having the valves checked. In my 4Runner I have 190K miles and had the plugs changed once.
    Unless the bike isn't running you are making your own problem.
    The internals break down and the Ground electrode fatigues also. They are designed to last a period of time in an engine but should be replaced on a regular time/and or mileage schedule.
    BMW F800ST, 2010, Black, Fuzeblock, Sat Nav, BMW Tank Bag, Givi Touring Screen, Spotlights, 50K Miles

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    notacop is offline The original Schwartz Wald Troll
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    DJ, To do it correctly one should go to the dealers and buy the proper replacement from them and have a factory trained tech do the change.
    Yes, a plug can wear and I've seen some degrading over time but that was years ago and perhaps current plug design and manufacturer has improved. I'll stick to my statement that plugs can last decades and 10's of thousands of miles.
    I didn't see a response to "why are you changing plugs on a trip?" I've had failures on BMW's before mostly charging problems on air heads. But I never made a practice do unnecessary maint and cause problems while on a trip.
    Lititz suggests the plug would seize in the head. Ain't never had that happen in 100's of thousands of motorcycle miles. Never in a car either. I wonder at some of the problems that people have aren't mostly self induced. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. If you don't know what you are doing, don't do it. Even Dunny agreed with a line years ago when I responded to a "I just tuned the bike and now it won't run" To avoid looking like a incompetent don't make that statement.

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    Quote Originally Posted by notacop View Post
    I'll stick to my statement that plugs can last decades...
    .
    If you've owned and regularly used a well running motorcycle with plugs that have been untouched for 20 years or more I congratulate you but have to ask why would you do so?

    Are spark plugs very expensive in the US?





    Sent from my moto g(8) power lite using Tapatalk

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    Quote Originally Posted by notacop View Post
    DJ, To do it correctly one should go to the dealers and buy the proper replacement from them and have a factory trained tech do the change.
    Yes, a plug can wear and I've seen some degrading over time but that was years ago and perhaps current plug design and manufacturer has improved. I'll stick to my statement that plugs can last decades and 10's of thousands of miles.
    I didn't see a response to "why are you changing plugs on a trip?" I've had failures on BMW's before mostly charging problems on air heads. But I never made a practice do unnecessary maint and cause problems while on a trip.
    Lititz suggests the plug would seize in the head. Ain't never had that happen in 100's of thousands of motorcycle miles. Never in a car either. I wonder at some of the problems that people have aren't mostly self induced. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. If you don't know what you are doing, don't do it. Even Dunny agreed with a line years ago when I responded to a "I just tuned the bike and now it won't run" To avoid looking like a incompetent don't make that statement.
    My comment was more aimed at how often you skip the intervals of changing something that is past its best for the sake of a few quid and a couple of hours. Spark plugs in the UK are 10 for the set for the ST, I'll assume the US cost is not much different, and probably cheaper.
    Electronic components fail. Especially a highly strung one like a Spark plug - that's why the coil packs that drive them also fail, as well as alternators/distributors on the older stuff. Consider the effect a duff/underperforming spark plug in any motor, it's a key component to the combustion cycle.
    BMW F800ST, 2010, Black, Fuzeblock, Sat Nav, BMW Tank Bag, Givi Touring Screen, Spotlights, 50K Miles

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    Life of the plug will depend on a the plug type (iridium, platinum, plain jane Cu, etc) and the engine itself. An old aircooled I used to play with actually eroded the plug tips to the point that my gaps went from .035" to .070" on some normal Cu NGK plugs in 30k miles. Then there's my modern-ish Nissan Murano with iridium plugs from the factory have a service interval of something like 110k miles. I changed them at 120K and aside from a little carbon, they still looked and measured like they were new.

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    notacop is offline The original Schwartz Wald Troll
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    I used to check the plugs on my air head BMW's when checking the valves. Rarely needed to change them. I think construction has improved a bit since then.
    A friend took the controller from a Porsche and we put it in my Jeep. gapped the plugs at 50 thou. the device put out a higher charge. I think bikes today have electronics more similar to the Porsche than the jeep had originally. So they work more efficiently and require less fiddling.

  20. #13
    CTATV's Avatar
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    Hi everybody, thanks for the tips! I towed the bike from CT to upstate NY Florida my family’s place so I had tools (and neighbors tools, and beers lol) to do it I wasn’t doing with it being my main transport. The plugs were brown/red and in tact. I had just been crossing my fingers it wasn’t running lean with the GPR stinger I’m running on it! I borrowed a home ground socket and a factory one for an r6 from a buddy of mine back in CT and replaced with Iridium plugs last night.

    Took it for a thrash after work today. I was replacing at 7900 miles because i was having a hesitation/stumbling under WOT at 5k rpm. I was crossing fingers it was plugs and not clutch related. Replaced last night, thrashed on it after work today. Running much better!

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  22. #14
    notacop is offline The original Schwartz Wald Troll
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    Nice to hear your episode turned out OK!

  23. #15
    CTATV's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by notacop View Post
    Nice to hear your episode turned out OK!
    Thanks! Yeah its like a brand new bike!

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