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Thread: Fuel in engine oil '03 Xb9r

  1. #11
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    My experiences with taking my bike to a mechanic has gone as follows:
    1. Right when I bought it I took it to a shop (there are only two in the city of Chicago who will work on a Buell...) to have them drain and swap all the fluids and give it a once over. They changed out the primary oil but didn't put any gaskets on it.. hence the water in the primary. They didn't change all the fluids as there was a tear in a fork seal that they missed because they didn't change the fork oil. Well, either that or they did change the oil and put the old seals back in. Totally possible.
    2. Needed new fork seals and rear wheel bearing was almost seized so I took it to the other spot... they tried to charge me $1200 for the pleasure.

    It's absolutely brutal being a girl and taking your bike to the shop. Apparently that experience is magnified when there's a Buell involved. I can't figure that one out. People nerd out on my bike everywhere I go except a repair shop. Parts aren't that hard to find. I dunno..
    So, I figured it's about time I start working on my own bike. I'm going to school for mechanical engineering so I can design them, and I want to get confident with my mechanical skills as it's becoming less and less common. Now, how difficult is this gonna be? I've read through the service manual a couple of times now. It makes sense to me. I believe that I do not need to rotate the engine to access either the fuel pump or the throttle body, correct me if I'm wrong.. It'll probably take me an absurd amount of time. I've got a couple of questions, and I'd welcome and and all input.
    1. Should I order new gaskets and seals before I start?
    2. What is the best way to clean fuel injectors?
    3. What am I looking for when determining if the fuel pump needs to be replaced vs. repaired?
    4. From the manual it looks like the most common repairs for the fuel pump are related to the filter, lines, or wiring. Is there anything else I should look for?
    5. I know that proper diagnostic procedure is to do a fuel pressure test when determining if the fuel pump is faulty; however, is there another way I can get to the same conclusion? I don't have a test kit/gauge and I would like to be able to diagnose the problem today. If not, I'll wait, of course.
    6. Any pro tips that I won't find in the manual pertaining to injectors/fuel pump stuff?

    I think that's it. I really appreciate all the help you've been so far, and if this is really too difficult I'll listen if you tell me to stand down.

  2. #12
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Central Soviet state of new jersey.
    That's the true Buell spirit ! That's great, though you will have a learning curve, with a little determination, you'll get it fixed and learn a lot along the way.

    If you go to your local AutoZone or other major auto parts store, you can borrow most any tool, give Lunaticfringe a PM, he is the one who can give you the most accurate mechanical advice and he sells a rebuild kit as well as new fuel pumps ( he also gives forum members a nice discount for parts ).

    There are other ways to check your fuel pump and injectors, the fuel pump is supposed to put out a certain amount of fuel per minute but, you'll have to do a search for the amount unless someone shines in here with the info.

    This should help with the intake,

  3. #13
    Senior Member Cooter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Crawling up your skirt
    Damn, that sucks. I'm afraid that's exactly why I work on all my own stuff

    You sound capable and at least willing to try, I say go for it! This site is a wealth of knowledge and lots of people will chime in with advise It is the internet though, so remember we are at a disadvantage to what you are seeing and touching.

    Remember the Cooter-izm "Your answers can only be as good as your questions"

    A failing fuel pump couldn't fill your crankcase with gas. Lunatic has a valid point that it is old, (and so is the whole bike) but I'd caution against throwing parts at it. It will be expensive, time consuming, and frustrating. With a problem like this you need to KNOW that you fixed it before you ride the beast again.

    1) I wouldn't bother yet. You'll get them fast enough when you know what you need, and you don't know what you need yet.
    2) There are home brew (9v battery) methods... but IMO find a good injection shop that has an ultrasonic cleaner and can test/flow test them too. You'll want to know if they are leaking. That way you'll know if you have it fixed before you go riding it again!
    3) Lunatics Fuel pump repair kits are pretty all-inclusive. I would make SURE it includes a regulator. IMO that is the only other part besides leaky injectors that could cause a bunch of fuel to bypass the injectors and collect in the crankcase. RARE, but happens.
    4) Thats all. Pretty straight forward.
    5) Sorry, no cheats I know of. The ECM doesn't read fuel pressure, so it can't be diagnosed through ECMDroid. There is a test "tee" you can buy to hook a gauge up, or tap the little aluminum fuel block to 1/8" FPT and add a shraeder valve to hook up a gauge. Yes, a PITA, but you should do that. You need to test the fuel pump, but more importantly the REGULATOR to see if its stuck closed and over pressurizing the injectors. Remember you want to FIND the problem. Throwing new parts at it could get lucky, but you'll want to know its fixed before you ride it.
    6) The manual tells the story of how to remove the swingarm for fuel pump access but there is a much easier way.

    IF you test the fuel pump and the regulator is stuck, necessitating its removal:

    Hang the back of the bike a little off the ground by using an A-frame ladder or the rafters in the garage. Ratchet straps to the pillion pegs work perfectly.
    Remove the lower rear shock bolt and let the tire hang down.
    Use tin foil to make a funnel and remove the 1/8" pipe plug in the fuel pump flange to drain the tank.
    I put that blue painters tape on the swing arm to protect the paint.
    Remove the 4 bolts and the electrical plug from the fuel pump flange.
    You can carefully use a sharp flathead to wiggle the pump out, or make a puller, or PM Chickenstripn, he made one he loans out
    Takes 1/2 a beer (15 mins) tops....

    I don't think you need to remove the throttle body to remove the injectors? Sorry, I've never done that part. I'm sure someone will chime in with their experience though. I hope so!

  4. #14
    Senior Member Cooter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Crawling up your skirt
    Posted by lowkey in another thread. I'd trust lowkey's advise as well:

    "Yes on testing the injectors if you have software (ECMSpy/ECMDroid/TunerProRT), pull injectors from the fuel rail and with their harness clips still plugged in place each injector in an empty clear water bottle. Use one of the mentioned software features to "test front or rear injector". Watch visually the spray pattern and for drip as it cycles about 6 times. If you are still unsure or want an expert analysis send them to someone like injector dynamics.

    As for pump/regulator testing you will need to buy/rent a pressure tester. The issue is getting it to work with the stock fuel line as the pump end is a brass block I've seen only on the Buell, the other end you are dealing with fuel rail end and the tight 90* end of the line to which I've found no "kit" to work with. My solution was to buy a new Buell fuel line and cut my old one up to get the brass block and replacement 90* from the parts store along with regular rubber fuel line. I rent a test kit when needed and just put the buell ends on it for testing. I may consider lending the ends out but do not want the parts to not make their way back to me.

    Here is another way to get a rough estimate on pump/regulator flow that I did while waiting for the new line to show up and know for sure.

    No software required to do this test.

    1.) Disconnect the fuel line from the fuel rail and place 90* end into a measuring cup (I used a 2cycle mixing container as it has a tight measuring scale printed on it).

    2.) With stopwatch or smartphone cycle the red toggle button on right hand grip control which will cycle the pump to prime. (IIRC I did this 2 cycle times to get 5 seconds of fuel flow and got 2.4oz of fuel).

    3.) Next we do some math to figure out the flow for 1hr as this is what the manufacturer posts for fuel flow of the pump.

    2.4 oz @ 5 seconds

    28.8 oz @ 60 seconds

    1728 oz @ 1 hr = 13.5 gallons per hour

    Above is for my pump and is very close to the rated flow in GPH from the MFG. Keep in mind the GPH rated is just the pump without regulator so results will be less GPH because of the flow restriction.

    Above is for the pump/regulator used in a 2007 XB12STT "

    The injector test should lead you in the right direction, but it should be cheap enough to send 2 injectors to a company for testing.
    and the above test is for fuel flow and does not test the regulator!

  5. #15
    Member TapRoot's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    I have a set of good injectors with 18k on them from my 05xb12r, seals or O rings seem to be ok but it's never a bad idea to have fresh ones. If you find that your injectors are the problem and need a set just lmk and i'll send them to you if you don't want to purchase new ones

  6. #16
    Senior Member lowkey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Bullhead AZ
    Cooter, the last portion of the quote was simply a test ANYONE suspecting a fuel pump problem can perform, this test is by no means accurate in any way BUT performed as outlined give a close idea to fuel flow of the pump IF one was to hunt down the pump specs as I also said, more than likely you could find the unregulated pressure of the pump and also the regulated pressure as outlined in the manual. From this info and the calculation outlined you should have a good idea if the system is operating as it should or not. Drastically under the GPH would indicate regulator/pump/supply line/filter issue. If the test was at the pumps GPH Flow I'd be doing another test to make sure then I'd be focusing on the regulator. Common sense is involved in this outlined procedure. Connecting a gauge inline from pump to rail is the only 100% way to know what's going on for sure.

    Posting on a phone sucks for sure and proofing even more of a challenge...
    Appreciate you bud!

  7. #17
    Senior Member Cooter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Crawling up your skirt
    I 100% agree lowkey. She seems determined to test the pump itself so I though your info was prudent. I did note in italics that the suspect regulator would not be part of that particular test though

    BTW I hugely appreciate the fuel table correction order you posted as well. VERY good info.

    And TapRoot, thats a super nice gesture

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