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TLS wheelie oil starvation question

3996 Views 13 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  Steve TLS
Hi all,
This may seem like a squid question up there with- what tires/how fast does your go/RWHP etc etc but its not, getting ready to strip my old TLS to the frame and rebuild and was wondering if there is a mod you can do to stop the front cylinder getting starved of oil (not don't wheelie) I know they seem to have an issue with this :slaptls, wheelies, an addiction without a cure :laugh I know I should have grown out it but I cant help myself, I really cant. Was thinking of baffles in the sump? Years ago I had an ducati 748SP and when I got into 4th the oil light would come on and if you didn't drop it would pump oil into the airbox, I have also managed to run the crank bearings on a GSXR SRAD while on the back wheel on a motorway in france:roost so not got the best track record!

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I don't know where the "starve the front cylinder" stuff got started, but that's not the problem. A wheelie will uncover the oil pickup in the sump so you will not be pumping oil to any part of the engine. The usual result for those who like extended wheelies is that they lose the lower end bearings.

Now, to answer your question, :no there's no practical way to modify the sump and/or pickup to prevent the problem.

I think the main issue is that the rear cyl head doesn't drain of oil very well when in a high wheelie, so the level in the sump gets low (plus being all sloshed to the rear, though the pickup is pretty far rearward). Folks have played with various baffle arrangements, but to my memory none were particularly better than the stock arrangement. It is recomended to run the oil near the top of the sight glass if doing wheelies.
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Hi, thanks for taking the time to reply guys and clearing up the oil issue for me, looks like I will just have to keep the front on the deck (or at least not in the air too long!!!)
Many have considered installing a pre-oiler canister, which pressurizes and stores some oil which it then supplies whenever ignition is on and oil pressure is lower than the canister's pressure. Of course, it doesn't allow you to have infinitely prolonged wheelies, but it should make it take longer for the oil pressure warning light to come on. And it will supply oil pressure before you start your engine too, which is usually the primary function for NASCAR type applications. Never got around to trying it but it's probably a good idea and a standard automotive race part so it should be easy to install.
MMmm, haven't heard of these pre-oiler's before, will look into that, wonder if I would be ok just keeping an eye on the oil warning light, and dropping her when it comes on, would remind me of my youth and my 748!! Thanks for the info
If you hit the oil light it might be a tad too late.
This might sound a bit daft, but what sort of safe distance are we talking roughly, 2/3rd gear balance point, not dragging the number plate on the rear brake! I understand this may be hard to answer but a bit paranoid now, appreciate the answers and info so far.
Cheers guys
Well, you could keep notes and find out when it goes boom. :laugh
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Would love to contribute more to this forum, just not an engine rebuild :nana
From STEVE TLS on the planet

Oil pickup can't easily be extended.

When you pick the front up, oil starts pooling in the rear valve cover and cam drive area. (If you've ever started one with a cam cover off you know how fast it will fill.) The oil can't get back to the sump. Air doesn't lubricate.

Acceleration wont expose the pick up.

Cover on the pickup
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I wonder if you could mod the case so less oil goes into the rear cylinder. Then shorten the intake of the oil pump so it sucks more to the rear.

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I imagine you could convert to a full dry sump, but it's not trivial. You just need another sump evacuation pump, and an external tank to supply the stock oil pump.
From STEVE TLS on the planet
And on TLZ too :laugh
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