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What is the best way to break-in a new motorcycle engine?

16290 Views 33 Replies 19 Participants Last post by  shisoshin
I heard of people breaking-in their new motorcycle engines, im new to motorcycles and i know this whole breaking-in a motor thing applies to all new engines but i've never done it since i always owned used vehicles.

Since the CBR250R just could be my new future bike, i will need to break-in the engine and want to do it right, and i do need advice from you guys on the best way to go about it. Thanks.

- James
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Ride it like you stole it for the first 200km.

With lots of varied rpm. Take it up to the redline, then let it engine brake back down to the low rpm's. Do this through out the gears.

Change the oil and oil filter after 200km and ride it like you stole it for the next 800km until your 1000km service.
thats one method. another would be to baby the bike for the first 3000km. dont redline it, dont launch it, dont rev it hard, and dont do any engine braking. then change the oil after that. either way works. its just a matter of which you prefer. for me i like to baby it while its braking in.
Engines need to be run hard from the very start in order to seat the rings. You only get one chance to do it... at the start.

A hard break in, and correctly set rings are likely to give the engine between 2-10% more power than one that wasn't later on in it's life, as well as other advantages (less engine wear, longevity etc). You want the piston rings to seat correctly.

I'd advise to Google 'How to brake in a motorcycle' and 'how to seat piston rings' for lots of info on it.

It's also good to change the oil and oil filter very early one, as any engine no matter how modern will have minute shavings etc of metal. You don't want these in your oil for long. It's certainly advisable to do it before 200km, and again at 1000km.
theres also soft break in. in fact i know a lot more people do the soft break in compared to a hard break in. soft break in still allows the rings to seat properly. i agree with the early oil changes and doing them at 3000km is still considered early for a soft break in.

google "soft break in a motorcycle"
here you go so you dont have to actually search for it.

Break-in Hard or Soft? - Triumph Forum: Triumph Rat Motorcycle Forums

Breaking in a motorcycle : Suzuki GSX-R Motorcycle Forums:

Motorcycle Questions - hard or easy break in whats the best - JustAnswer

theres more but im too lazy to put it all on here. basically its all about preference. ive always done soft break in and never had any problems what so ever. plus if you look in the manuals almost all the motorcycle manufacturers recommend a soft break in.
ive always done soft break in and never had any problems what so ever.
Yes, unless looking at the pistons you're not likely to see anything wrong. Adverse affects later in the engine life will be less power and extra wear on the engine.

plus if you look in the manuals almost all the motorcycle manufacturers recommend a soft break in.
Absolutely. For some very good reasons. As businesses they're out to get money. The problems associated with a soft break in will not be apparent until after the warranty. Engine wear, less power, shorter engine life. They will make money off these.

Googling 'how to break in a motorcycle' and I doubt virtually any will advocate a soft break in. It will probably be zero.

Of course everybody's free to break in their bike anyway they want, and as long as everybody's happy it's all cool.

Cheers. :)
Ride hard at break in if you want to not seat your rings & like power robbing blow by likely to occur with the extreme pressures forcing hot gases past your not seated rings.

I would listen to the recommendations of the manufacturer who wants your engine to last longer and run better than the other makes so they look good & more people buy their product. Honda didn't get the reputation they have because people ignored their break in instructions.
Honda didn't get the reputation they have because people ignored their break in instructions.
Actually most probably do.

Compare any two bikes (same model) after one has been broken in hard, and one in soft. After feeling the amazing difference, take a look inside, after being shell shocked by what you saw and felt put them on a dyno...

BTW, to seat the rings at the very start you go through the gears, up to the high revs then let it engine brake from high revs to low. Stop and let it cool down for 20 mins or so.

Repeat this 5 or so times.

Seating the rings without over heating the engine is a good thing.

Running it too soft and you'll get 'glazing'.

That's bad.
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Also, after 150 miles or so, change the oil and oil filter.
I agree with Redline, I am at 100 miles as I type and I've taken it to redline in 2nd gear and 3rd. However for the oil change I will wait till it hits 600 miles.
Fairy muff.

btw, just about to hit 22,000 km and the bike and engine both run and sound like a dream. :)
I also change the oil and oil filter between the 6000km service intervals, btw.
There is a strange object under the seat.. tells all.

If you want an ever improving bike in years to come.. follow it.
If you want engine rattles, and a quick break in... valve bounce it... the rev limiter will stop any law suits.. Hondas are indestructable. (almost) always have been.

Why do ppl on this site think the cbr250 is any different to the other few hundred thousand other motorcycles ever built?

This is not a race bike out of the factory, they redline it for one millisecond is to stop these kind of threads.
Forum experts, gotta love them. :rolleyes: :D
Yeah well i didnt learn this off the internet.. wasnt even invented back then.. and i run it hard.. just not brutal for the first 500km (2 days) and progressively till 1000km (one week).. there is a happy medium.. page 12.
Forum experts, gotta love them. :rolleyes: :D
people in glass houses shouldn't throw stones
Just ride the effing thing, but don't thrash it until you've had the first service done, when everything should be checked and adjusted.

Remember there is more to run in than just the engine. Tyres, brakes and all need a bit of the newness taken off them before they are fully effective, so better to take it a bit easy at first.

Once it is all sorted, give it death if you want to; just don't give yourself death.

Few of the "break in experts" get to keep a bike till the end of its useful life; that falls to mugs like me who pick them up second hand..... but we are not so stupid that we buy something that has obviously been thrashed, crashed and/or not well maintained.

Unwashed and looking a bit rough; not a problem.... maybe better because it knocks the price down to better value for money!!
Forum experts, gotta love them. :rolleyes: :D
Projection, gotta love it :rolleyes: :cool:
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