We all know vital signs are important to monitor as they can quickly give us an overview of our health. This goes for motorcycles as well. Often our motorcycles don’t have gauges other than the basics – a Speedometer, Tachometer, or a Fuel Gauge – to provide us with information critical to the operation of our bikes. One of the better choices when it comes to adding gauges to our rides is to add an Oil Pressure Gauge. K and G Cycles (www.kandgcycles.com) has a great selection of Oil Pressure Gauges and mounts to help you keep an eye on your bikes blood pressure.
Oil pressure is an important factor in the longevity of most internal combustion engines. With a forced lubrication system oil is picked up by the oil pump and forced through oil galleries (passageways) into bearings, such as the main bearings and camshaft bearings. Other components such as cam lobes and cylinder walls are lubricated by oil jets. Sufficient pressure ensures that the metal of the rotating shaft (journal) and the bearing shell can never touch, and wear is therefore confined to initial start-up and shutdown. The oil pressure, combined with the rotation of the shaft, also hydrodynamically centers the journal in its shell and cools the bearings.
Oil pressure is higher when the engine is cold due to the increased viscosity, and also increases with engine speed until the relief valve opens to divert excess flow. Oil pressure is lowest under hot idling conditions, and the minimum pressure allowed by the manufacturer’s tolerances is usually given at this point. Excessive pressure may indicate a blocked filter, blocked oil gallery or the wrong grade of oil. Low pressure often indicates worn bearings on the crank shaft or a broken oil pump.
Adding an oil pressure gauge and or a temperature gauge is fairly simple when you purchase the right supplies. You can choose to install it the oil pressure gauge on the rocker box or you may choose to add another gauge like an oil temp gauge and mount them up on the risers. The combination of these two monitors will give you a constant report of temps and pressures, two of the most revealing aspects of your rides health. Placing them in your line of sight for constant monitoring is even better. Contact the helpful crew at K and G Cycles (www.kandgcycles.com) and you will be on your way to a happy, healthier bike.