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Major engine failure and MT07 engine compatibility


luke2152
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First a whine, then a question:

Four months ago my Tenere engine failed spectaularly. Despite all the glowing reports on how reliable this engine is, failed spectacularly at less than 3000 miles. A valve hit the piston on the left cylinder, broke off, chaos ensured and destroyed everything between (and including) the crank and the cams. The whole incident sounded like a concrete mixer and took no more than a few seconds as I grabbed the clutch and switched the engine off. See the pictures!

 

I took it to the local Yamaha dealer and they said all the right things. Got a warranty claim underway (which took 5 weeks to get approved). There was no obvious cause of the damage.

 

The head office decided instead of just replacing the engine they would replace every single part of the engine and four months later I'm still waiting for the last few parts to arrive and the lead times just keep getting pushed out. Yamaha head office has really delivered the KTM service on me here (I understand that Covid is a big part of these delays but if they cared about their reputation they would move heaven and earth to get parts in quickly for a famously reliable engine).

 

Now despite how pissed off I am about this whole situation I'm of the mindset that sometimes you have to fix your own problems. I've managed to find a 2018 MT07 engine from a crashed bike for a decent price that I reckon would drop right in and at least get me back on the road for the summer. I can't think of any reason why it wouldn't work. I would have thought the crank angle sensor, alternator, coolant temp sensor, oil press sensor would be the same. Injectors, throttle position sensor, air temp sensor and map sensor would come from my tenere. Only other thought is small things like coolant hoses pointing in the wrong directions and such but I suspect if our tenere's have MT07 rear shock mounts on them, the MT07 engines will not deviate from tenere either. Any one know a good reason why it wouldn't just bolt on.

 

I've mentioned the idea to the shop and they kind of said its your bike, you can take it home and do it yourself but if you fry the ecu it's your own fault. I suspect they were mainly covering their arse and they are happy swap the original engine back in once its rebuilt.

 

Of course the end result would be a spare engine and might result in some kind of mad buggy/go kart being built in my shed!

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Hmm interesting failure. 
No idea if the engine is an interference type or not. 
My first thought would be a major over rev that caused the valves to float (like dropping into first at 60mph). 
If it’s an interference type engine either major over rev or the valve timing went south. 
With that many miles I doubt the valve stem was defective. 

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That sucks.

As mentioned I would think a cam chain tensioner failure was the cause.

 

I see no reason a MT07 engine would not drop in.  I think I remember reading those doing flashes on the T700 said the ecu's were the same as MT07 models.

 

I would be doing exactly that If I was in the same situation.

 

 

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Awww man, that sucks! Ya think it would be cheaper for them to just drop a new engine in for you!

Any chance of picking up the ECU from the donor bike?

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I thought front sprocket was mounted higher on the tenere, but I just snapped pictures and the look the same.

The ecu is the same, I rode my tenere for a week with my fz07 ecu in it. Id say do it if you have the spare money. Cross karts are cool too.....

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Man that super sucks!  My only concern would have been if the ECU mapping/ cam profiles etc weren’t 100% compatible. But from the post above seems that isn’t the case? I’d go for it if it’s a good price. I think I’d rather have a used (low mileage) engine over an overhauled one anyway IMO.  

 

 

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5 hours ago, luke2152 said:

First a whine, then a question:

Four months ago my Tenere engine failed spectaularly. Despite all the glowing reports on how reliable this engine is, failed spectacularly at less than 3000 miles. A valve hit the piston on the left cylinder, broke off, chaos ensured and destroyed everything between (and including) the crank and the cams. The whole incident sounded like a concrete mixer and took no more than a few seconds as I grabbed the clutch and switched the engine off. See the pictures!

 

I took it to the local Yamaha dealer and they said all the right things. Got a warranty claim underway (which took 5 weeks to get approved). There was no obvious cause of the damage.

 

The head office decided instead of just replacing the engine they would replace every single part of the engine and four months later I'm still waiting for the last few parts to arrive and the lead times just keep getting pushed out. Yamaha head office has really delivered the KTM service on me here (I understand that Covid is a big part of these delays but if they cared about their reputation they would move heaven and earth to get parts in quickly for a famously reliable engine).

 

Now despite how pissed off I am about this whole situation I'm of the mindset that sometimes you have to fix your own problems. I've managed to find a 2018 MT07 engine from a crashed bike for a decent price that I reckon would drop right in and at least get me back on the road for the summer. I can't think of any reason why it wouldn't work. I would have thought the crank angle sensor, alternator, coolant temp sensor, oil press sensor would be the same. Injectors, throttle position sensor, air temp sensor and map sensor would come from my tenere. Only other thought is small things like coolant hoses pointing in the wrong directions and such but I suspect if our tenere's have MT07 rear shock mounts on them, the MT07 engines will not deviate from tenere either. Any one know a good reason why it wouldn't just bolt on.

 

I've mentioned the idea to the shop and they kind of said its your bike, you can take it home and do it yourself but if you fry the ecu it's your own fault. I suspect they were mainly covering their arse and they are happy swap the original engine back in once its rebuilt.

 

Of course the end result would be a spare engine and might result in some kind of mad buggy/go kart being built in my shed!

 

 

What location in the world are you and 

what is the manufacture  year and month of your bike?

 

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My best guess (and it's only a guess) is that I counter rotated the engine rolling it backwards in gear. After that little off road escapade it was hard to start and idled poorly. That was roughly 30 minutes before it blew itself to pieces. Maybe the reverse rotation damaged the tensioner or caused the timing chain to skip over the crank or cam sprockets. Certainly something that shouldn't happen on a bike that is intended to be used off road.

 

Equally possible is that the two events were unrelated and I just had a manufacturing flaw. Certainly no over revving. It did happen on a downshift but a modest 4th to 3rd one at about 50mph.

 

Bike purchased in UK October last year. Not sure about the manufacture date.

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Hmm. Sure sounds like a cam chain tensioner/cam chain issue. Early Super Tenere's (pre-2014's) used to blow up quite spectacularly due to faulty cam chain tensioners after higher mileage. That's why mine has the upgraded one.

 

As I don't know the exact conditions of your 'counter rotated engine' its hard to say what exactly went wrong but your report of poor start and idle may have something to do with it. It is 'technically' possible for the cam chain tensioner to release under this abnormally high load on the chain, and hence tensioner (tensioner is always on the backside/low tension side of the chain) of forcing the engine backwards, and then immediately upon startup the backside of the chain is temporarily loose allowing the intake cam to skip a tooth. I don't know for sure, but the T7 is probably a hydraulically assisted, mechanical locking tensioner (like the ST, R1, MT01 etc) which I'm guessing can be overloaded.

 

What caused you to counter (reverse) rotate the engine while in gear? It must have been a very highly loaded reverse in order to overcome the internal engine's resistance.

 

Good luck with the swap. It should be totally do-able.

I think I have Yamaha disease...

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Well I did the swap today and I'm pleased to report it was surprisingly easy. Engine is a little heavier that I expected and made it a struggle to get in on my own but got the job done with a couple of ratchet straps. Electrically everything plugged straight in 962895903_bikeandengine.thumb.jpg.e790bc2a62137677db367d71d15079fe.jpgIMG_20210717_112220_610.thumb.jpg.3cc505f66619005e902405c60f000e0b.jpg

The engine mounts have an unusual insert which you need to wind in with a 13mm allen key. Quite a clever idea as it lets you open the frame up a few mm to fit the engine and then close it up before you put the the frame bolts in. Would be easy to overlook and you'd end up damaging the frame if you didnjust them. As I didn't have a 13mm allen key a m8 bolt with 13mm nut did the job (photos showing insert and use of nut welded to bolt to adjust).

 

 

 

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Only other thing of note was the gear position/neutral switch connector. On both the tenere and MT07 this has a short length of wiring and then an 8 pin connector. However the MT07 has the connector attached to a bracket and bolted to the engine near the starter motor while on the tenere this lead is not attached and runs back to near the ECU. However the MT07 bracket can be removed and the lead is long enough to connect to the tenere harness. I presume the MT07 has it's ECU in a different part of the bike. (photos showing MT07 connector position and then where it connects on tenere).

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The MT07 comes stock with a 16 tooth sprocket and the tenere 15 tooth. Annoyingly when I collected the bike an box of parts from the shop they seem to have forgotten the top radiator hose so I couldn't take it out for a test ride but it started up nicely and in the 30 seconds or so that I was comfortable running it without coolant sounded good and no warning lights.

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Since you did the engine replacement yourself, what's the latest status of your warranty claim? They're still saying the dealer is going to swap in the other motor when all the other parts arrive? Are you going to be out of pocket $$ other than what you spent on the MT motor?

 

What's the communication like between you and the dealer or Yamaha over those 5 weeks before the claim was approved?

 

This seems such an unusual situation I'm surprised Yamaha didn't ship the motor in its entirety back to Japan for a full inspection.

 

 

Edited by MCGMB
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4 hours ago, MCGMB said:

Since you did the engine replacement yourself, what's the latest status of your warranty claim? They're still saying the dealer is going to swap in the other motor when all the other parts arrive? Are you going to be out of pocket $$ other than what you spent on the MT motor?

 

What's the communication like between you and the dealer or Yamaha over those 5 weeks before the claim was approved?

 

This seems such an unusual situation I'm surprised Yamaha didn't ship the motor in its entirety back to Japan for a full inspection.

 

 

Yes warranty status is still that the dealer is going to swap the other engine back in when the parts arrive. So nothing out of pocket for me other than buying the MT 07 engine (and I really got a great deal on that). Dealer showed me the mountain of parts that had arrived already to build the new engine.

 

Assuming the new MT07  engine has no issues I might just leave it in and ask for a newly built engine as a spare or even sell it. Only reason not to is that I'd like to keep my original engine numbers for future resale (The new crankcase was supplied with original engine number!).

 

Over those 5 weeks it was a case of me calling dealer regularly and them saying it's still pending on the system. At the time we both thought once it was approved the parts or engine would arrive in days. I've got a pretty good relationship with the dealer, but I've moved so they aren't local to me anymore.  It's the head office who have pissed me off and the general excuse is along lines of 'our products are so reliable that we aren't used sorting out big problems'. Lots of apologies but not much action.

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Thanks for posting the updates. Very informative.

 

Having owned 7 Yamaha over many years with very few problems (one recall, one minor warranty claim) I was surprised to hear of the catastrophic failure. Apparently Yamaha did too, ha ha. No excuse for them taking so long though.

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I don't like yamaha warranty treatment, they should replace your engine right away for a new one!

I had also bad experience with yamaha warranty policy. Shame.

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Yamaha does not give replacement engines on warranty or any other repair.  They always repair. And yes it stinks right now to get any parts , but that being said If your dealer and you put enough pressure on them they will do everything they can. 

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They should supply a loan bike until the T7 is repaired.

 

 I think bike dealers/manufacturers just assume bikes are for a bit of fun now and again and it’s no problem if you can’t use it for months on end.

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This is totally unrelated- but I’ll share my (similar) story... I understand where you’re coming from 100%.  I’ve got a Tenere, but it’s been troublefree- however, I bought a brand spanking new (in 2019) sea-doo gti155 pwc.  I did my research and based this off of the 1503cc rotax engine being bulletproof- 600 hours without any issues is not unheard of.  Well... 74 hours later the #1 piston suffers a catastrophic failure- takes out the head, rod, piston is gone, cylinder liner is shot, intake is smashed.   Kicker here is- motor is way too new to have any aftermarket support, any parts have to come straight from BRP... quote to repair: $8700.  On a ski I paid $11k for.   Talk about pissed off!

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Posted (edited)

Picked up the missing radiator hose, it's all back together now  and been out for a ride. Runs perfectly, no warning lights. Should have done the swap four months ago!

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Edited by luke2152
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An earlier post mentioned Yamaha shipping the motor back to Japan.  So the owner is in the UK meaning the bike was built in France.  Do they assemble the motors in Japan and then ship to France for final assembly?

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24 minutes ago, Eric W. said:

An earlier post mentioned Yamaha shipping the motor back to Japan.  So the owner is in the UK meaning the bike was built in France.  Do they assemble the motors in Japan and then ship to France for final assembly?

I think that that post was someone saying Yamaha should ship the engine back to Japan for analysis. That's not how they did it though, the engine is still in the shop as I got the radiator hose off it this week.

 

Also the shop called me today and reckon they have all the parts and ready to start building. Doesn't make much difference to me now that I'm mobile again - they can take their time now!

 

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Good luck!  You're not alone, well maybe you are on such a massive failure but mine has spent way too much time in the shop as well, and that's where it is currently, alongside another T7 with similar issues.  It's about to get really hot here in Texas so I've missed too many riding days this summer.  

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5 hours ago, Eric W. said:

Good luck!  You're not alone, well maybe you are on such a massive failure but mine has spent way too much time in the shop as well, and that's where it is currently, alongside another T7 with similar issues.  It's about to get really hot here in Texas so I've missed too many riding days this summer.  

What problems are you having?

Tenere 700 / Africa Twin / Goldwing / Super Tenere / WR250R / GS1000S / GT750 / H2 750 / H1 500

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Well I'm hesitant to say on this thread because it pales in comparison to the gentleman in the UK.  I'll be brief and exclude a lot of details but some of it is just a lack of parts which in turn makes a short fix into a long one:

1) Front wheel wobble.  Diagnosed and misdiagnosed many times but I finally found a good service tech who put it on a lift and said I had a defective tire from Pirelli.  I switched to my preferred brand and ate the cost for a new rear tire because I wanted them to match (Yamaha covered the front even though it wasn't the Pirelli).  Problem solved with Anakees.

2) After waiting weeks for the tires, when they were replacing the rear tire they notified me that my entire rear brake system had been roasted due to excessive heat.  Blue rotors, pads were snow white from heat, pistons beginning to flake, etc.etc.etc.  After interrogating me for dragging the rear brake (which I normally don't even use unless for parking lot stuff), they went guessing..cosmoline on rotors from the factory not cleaned off, over-filling the master cylinder, faulty pistons, etc. etc. etc.  Finally just settled on, well nothing that I know of.

3) weeks and weeks of waiting on brake parts so I decided to attempt to improve the front brake.  I knew they were so-so brakes when I bought them but I refuse to ride a bike where the brake lever comes to my fingers under hard braking.  Ordered Galfer pads and decided to go with braided lines on the front.  They inspected the lines and test rode new bikes on the floor (not a T7) and said they were all like that and the new Super Ten was even worse.  They said braided lines wouldn't help and that it was likely they way Yamaha configured the ABS system.  Who knows.  

 

Galfer pads finally came in and the bike will be ready tomorrow, just in time for a Texas August.   Don't even get me started on the rear brake feeling like a cheap marshmallow when you use it.  I give up on that one.

 

Oh well, it is what it is and there isn't another bike that I want right now.

 

Oh, Honda, where is the baby Africa Twin?  Ha ha.  Seriously I hope the bike works well for me but I refuse to ride a bike when I don't trust the front brake.

 

You asked, so there it is!  Good luck to the man in the UK.

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