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Greetings All,

Went to change the oil for the first time since acquiring Momma's 12 XR. The plug came out a little funny, loose, tight, loose, out. It did seem to make steady progress while un-threading. Drained the oil, the filter (OEM) was on GORILLA tight, ufda... (1/4 turn after contact is enough, Mr. Godzilla).

Anyway, while replacing the plug it went in fairly smoothly (am very cautious about threading, not cross-threading), however, the drain plug never got tight. (???) The plug looked fully seated but wouldn't get snug.

Took the drain bolt out and inspected it, the threads on the bolt are fine. However, there was a little bit of aluminum shaving from the case visible. Cleaned things up, gingerly re-inserted the oil drain plug until it was fully seated. Did not try to ‘snug’ it this time, just got it to where it was fully seated. Filled with oil, level is holding, no leaks, no spots under the ride, no seepage around plug.

That’s the background story. So, how does one fix this? Heli-coil’s (IMHO) are good for bolts that do not get used frequently. (Like an oil drain plug). Should the case be re-tapped the same size? Should the case be re-tapped up a size? (From metric to standard for example?). Has this happened to others? (What was their solution?) Is there a common fix for this?

Appreciate your constructive thoughts and input.

Ride safe,

Smokier
 

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Should the case be re-tapped the same size? Should the case be re-tapped up a size? (From metric to standard for example?). Has this happened to others? (What was their solution?) Is there a common fix for this?

Appreciate your constructive thoughts and input.

Ride safe,

Smokier
Heli-Coils use what's called an STI tap that oversize's it so when the coil is put in the plug size remains the same. I use a Honda drain plug, same size but it's fully threaded.
 

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I stripped my oil drain hole threads a few years ago(being ham-fisted :mad: ). I went to an Advanced Auto near me and purchased a magnetic drain plug slightly oversized form the stock plug(sorry I don't remember which plug I actually used). I gently & slowly ran a tap up though to match the new plug and have had no issues since and it doesn't leak a drop.
 

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If it were me I wouldn't trust the old threads in the motor. Stupid but cheap for polaris to think a steel plug and aluminum would be a good mix.
 

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Stupid but cheap for polaris to think a steel plug and aluminum would be a good mix.
You are right, if you have a aluminium body and need to torque a steel plate or flange to it then normally from factory they put helicoils in there, so why this is not done on Oil Drain / Rims is beond me as these bolts has to be removed and put back all the time ...

Andre using TaPaTaLk
 

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Steel plug in aluminum pans on plenty of cars. People who think plugs need to be gorilla tight are the issue. The same people that put a filter on so you have to destroy it to get it back off.
 

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Steel plug in aluminum pans on plenty of cars. People who think plugs need to be gorilla tight are the issue. The same people that put a filter on so you have to destroy it to get it back off.
This 100%. Drain plugs and oil filters need to be snug, not tight.

But, your threads are already damaged so it’s a mute point.The experts at The Vic Shop recommend a Time Sert, not a Helicoil. They’ve posted on this exact issue many times. Look them up, follow their advise exactly and you’ll be fine.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Greetings ALl,

Thanks for the replies. Rylan at the Vic Shop did get back to me and has suggested the "Time Sert" solution. Momma's ride has an appointment with Rylan for that a Dyno tune of the PCV. :) Two birds, one trip.

Thanks again, ride safe!
Smokier
 

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What the heck is a time sert?
 

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I've always been wary of steel drain plugs in aluminum pans. I'm guilty of "just one extra little twist" to make sure everything is tight. So a few oil changes ago I made sure I used a new washer and torqued the drain plug just right. Now I'm using a vacuum tank for my oil changes and don't touch the plug.
 

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The thing about an oil drain plug with a crush washer is it doesn't need to be tight. It just needs to be good and snug. 15 ft-lbs per the service manual.
 

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The thing about an oil drain plug with a crush washer is it doesn't need to be tight. It just needs to be good and snug. 15 ft-lbs per the service manual.
I use the allen wrench that came in the bikes tools, snug by hand is enough for me.
Only time I used my torque wrench was on the head bolts when I fitted the VM1 cams.
Admittedly experience isnt instant its aquired by practice and stripping a few threads over the years.
 

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My approach has always been to tighten each bolt until it strips the threads and then back off a half turn :)
 

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I wasn't trying to say I tighten to torque spec; I was merely implying that it doesn't take much force at all to seal the drain plug with a good crush washer.
 

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I am anal about the use of torque wrenches on a lot of stuff. Drain plugs, wheels, bearings stuff like that. But let me qualify. I spent 20 years working on aircraft, so if I didnt get something tightened rite it wasnt "oh **** screwed that up". It was awe **** that killed people. Then over 20 years working on race cars. Same deal not rite, someone gets hurt. And now trying (sometimes very trying) to teach young new kids how to work on cars and make technicians out of them. Some will be good, some will struggle to work at Jiffy Lube. Try tooltopia for a good reasonable priced torque wrench. Inch pound is fine, just have to use simple math, and most stuff on the bike is under what would max out the tool.
 

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How about leave the plug in and buy a MityVac, you never have to pull the plug again.
Or... use a Fumoto valve. I've put them on anything I change oil on. Very handy, no spills, no hunting for the right size wrench, no stripping threads, and no more screwing around each time you do an oil change which means you can enjoy your drink in peace.

hero-fumoto-engine-oil-drain-valve.jpg
 
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