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V7 II ENGINE FAILURES & CLUTCH ADJUST NOTICE!

Discussion in 'V7/V85/V9 Chat & Tech' started by GTM®, May 21, 2016.

  1. GTM®

    GTM® Administrator Staff Member GT di Razza Pura

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    Don’t unless they are paying for it. The motor is seized, there will be contaminates.

    Below is how bad the crank movement is on the motors with the shim bearings omitted. This should barely move to the eye. Once the motor is seized, this will likely not move at all. The cases would have to be split in order to see if the shim bearings are in place. Based on the VIN# and related, my bet is that they are not.

     
  2. Midnite

    Midnite Tuned and Synch'ed

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    Thanks! Very helpful.
     
  3. Midnite

    Midnite Tuned and Synch'ed

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    Thanks again for the advice/insight, gents. I've reached out to Guzzi/Piaggio to open a case, and they've requested maintenance records to get things rolling. In the meantime, she sits at my local dealer. Will update as I learn more...
     
  4. Spumoni

    Spumoni Tuned and Synch'ed GT Contributor

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    Until Midnite’s recent misfortune at 11k miles, I thought I was out of the woods since I have 10k on mine. I’m about 3 hours from the nearest dealer, so I’ve been servicing my bike since new. I just called them (BMG Powersports) to ask if I could ship my bike to them and have them test it, then service it if all was good - the service manager was very nice, but he said he never heard of the bulletin, and never tested one before. I sent him all of my info, and he will contact Piaggio and let me know. Other option - the tool is available on eBay, and I can bring the bike to my trusted friend who has a local shop.... I will wait to hear back from the dealer first.
     
  5. Midnite

    Midnite Tuned and Synch'ed

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    Well, I'm sorry to report that the worst-case scenario has come to pass. After sitting at the dealer (Munroe Motors in San Francisco) for nearly six weeks now, and after having provided a thorough service history including receipts for all fluids, parts etc. to Piaggio upon their request, I received the following message from the Piaggio rep. today, only after I initiated contact with her:

    Dear Mr. Moore,

    Thank you for your message today. We have been in contact with the dealer and the Piaggio Technical Rep. has been working closely with them on your concern. At this point we are aware that the dealer would like to return your bike to you. Your concern has been carefully reviewed and it was found that the oil in the motor looked like sludge, per the dealer and is not going to qualify for any further consideration. We are very sorry for your situation, but it is also too far out of warranty and appears that the maintenance was not completed to Moto Guzzi service specifications as indicated in your owner’s manual.

    We are very sorry about your situation and we advise that you please pick up your Moto Guzzi if you’ve not already done so.

    Respectfully,

    Lisa McMillin
    Customer Care
    Piaggio Group Americas, Inc.
    (212) 380-4433



    I have started crafting a response, including the excerpt below detailing why I think that their conclusion is ludicrous and unfounded, but wonder if any of you good people might have recommendations as to how to proceed - especially given that bike is out of warranty. I loved my V7ii, and poured thousands of dollars into upgrades (including Todd's fantastic fueling kit, mufflers, suspension etc.): approximately $12,000 into the bike all told, and it seized at just over 11,000 miles. I am profoundly disappointed by Piaggio's response, and am shocked that I'm now looking at an essentially useless bike. Is there some way that I can appeal to management at Piaggio to make some sort of an offer to make it right? Do I now have to deal with parting out a relatively new bike? Is it anywhere near worthwhile to look at seeing if I can pay someone to put another engine into it? Would a V7iii engine work with the same ECU? Curious to know what you all would recommend.

    In the meantime, I'm crying in my beer...

    Matt


    Excerpt from my draft response:

    Maintenance: All maintenance for my V7ii was performed per service manual specifications, and in a number of instances, services were performed before they were required per the service manual. Evidence of all of the services that were performed was provided to you. When you say that it "...appears that the maintenance was not completed to Moto Guzzi service specifications as indicated in your owner’s manual.", which specific services do not appear to have been completed?

    Condition of oil: I am befuddled by the characterization of the engine oil in my V7ii looking "like sludge", and that this would be used as a reason for invalidating Moto Guzzi’s culpability regarding the seized engine. The engine oil was changed with an OEM filter and Motul 7100 10W-60 (both per specification of the service manual) at 8998 miles with the volume noted in the service manual, and was regularly checked at 500 mile intervals after the change. At each of these 500-mile interval checks, I verified that the oil level was within the specification noted in the service manual. The oil had just over 2000 miles on it when the engine seized (well under the 6000 mile change interval), and looked very fresh; it still had much of the red color that Motul has when it is new. I checked the engine oil level before my last ride, when the engine seized, and again verified that it was within the range specified in the service manual.
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2020
  6. GTM®

    GTM® Administrator Staff Member GT di Razza Pura

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    This all comes down to the dealer really, and why they want to go against helping you is the better question. If you have the receipts and what you posted is true, have them prove to you their comment on the oil condition in your engine, and get a sample for you to have analyzed to see if there is metal in the oil.
    Keep us posted.
     
  7. Midnite

    Midnite Tuned and Synch'ed

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    That's exactly it. For whatever reason/s, the dealer/service manager (not the same one I bought the bike from) doesn't seem to be interested in supporting me. He's seemed much more concerned about my bike taking up space in his shop. The service manager initially seemed willing to help, but when it became apparent that the bike would be sitting in there until Piaggio figured out what they were doing, he became increasingly agitated. About five weeks after I dropped the bike off, I reached back out to the dealer to find out what was going on from their end, since the Piaggio rep told me over and over again that she was still waiting for more information from the dealer, and he told me that Piaggio hadn't even contacted him yet. At this point, I think he just wants to be done with it, and to get my bike out. So, I'll have to tow it back to my house on my dime.

    Since the motor oil was relatively new (2000 miles) when the engine seized, and above the "min" level on the dipstick, I'm going to take a crack at responding to the rep to let her know that I dispute the dealer's assessment of the condition of my oil. And yes: all services were completed per the manual, and everything I have presented here and to Piaggio is 100% truthful.

    Given that the bike is out of warranty though, and that the dealer and Piaggio seem to have no interest in making it right, I'm losing hope that Piaggio will change its tune. I don't have full coverage on the bike, so that's out, and I'm hesitant to go the attorney route due to what I imagine would be exorbitant fees by the time I compel Piaggio to take action. If anyone knows of a good attorney to work with, please let me know, and I'l investigate. I have no idea where to start. At the end of the day, it still seems nuts to me that the engine would seize at such low mileage (I didn't even get through the original set of brake pads), AND that the manufacturer wouldn't offer to do anything to remedy the situation.

    Is it possible to swap a V7iii engine into the bike if all else fails? Same ECU?
     
  8. GTM®

    GTM® Administrator Staff Member GT di Razza Pura

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    The biggest question remains since it's in the range of faulty engines from Guzzi, if the thrust bearings were omitted, they've been warranty replacing them almost without question since the first few arose.
    I've not done the swap with the engines, but technically speaking yes it would. The ECU is a Throttle Body/ECU combo, so the map would need to be updated, which I can help you with if you go that route. Since it's a Mk II with ABS/TC, it makes it a ton easier. I'd be happy to do the work if you want to get it down here if you go that route. I have a transport guy that runs between SF & LA all the time. He could likely pick up at Munroe.
     
  9. Midnite

    Midnite Tuned and Synch'ed

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    Thanks, Todd. I’ll update after sending an appeal to Piaggio to reconsider the claim. If all else fails, I’m leaning toward a V7iii swap.
     
  10. vagrant

    vagrant GT Reference

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    Unless you are willing to pay Todd or someone with experience and a bit of pull to tear it down far enough to prove it does or doesn't have a thrust bearing in it you are wasting time and $$$. If it has one your'e screwed! If not I suspect they might change their tune rather than all the bad publicity the would get here.
     
  11. Midnite

    Midnite Tuned and Synch'ed

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    Don't think it's worth the time and money to pay someone to tear it down. I sent the response below to the Piaggio rep., and will await her reply before determining next steps (I'm not holding my breath). In the likely event that they leave me holding the bag, I'll likely pursue a V7iii engine swap just for kicks, which will give me a good excuse to finally get down to Todd's shop! Will let ya'll know what happens.

    Text of my response:

    I am surprised and disappointed to hear that this is the final assessment from Piaggio, and would like to know who I can speak with to pursue this at a higher level. I object to the characterization of the condition of the oil in my engine sump, and to the statement that it "...appears that maintenance was not completed to Moto Guzzi Service specifications...". I go to great lengths to ensure that my vehicles, including three motorcycles, are properly cared for, as I hope has been evident in the descriptions and documentation that I have provided. Please share my notes below regarding these topics with whomever appropriate, and let me know how I can appeal this decision at a higher level.

    Maintenance

    All maintenance for my V7ii was performed per service manual specifications, and in a number of instances, services were performed before they were required per the service manual. Evidence of the services that were performed was provided to you. You stated in your email that it "...appears that the maintenance was not completed to Moto Guzzi service specifications as indicated in your owner’s manual.". Which specific services do not appear to have been completed that would lead to engine seizure at such low mileage?

    Condition of engine oil

    Regarding the description of the engine oil in my V7ii looking "like sludge", and that this would be used as a reason for invalidating the seized engine claim:

    I performed an oil change in June, 2019 with an OEM UFI filter and Motul 7100 4T 10W-60 (both per specifications in the service manual) at 8998 miles. Additionally, I regularly checked the oil level at 500 mile intervals after the change to verify that it was within the specified range: between the "min" and "max" marks in the hash mark range on the dipstick. The oil had just over 2000 miles on it when the engine seized (well under the 6000 mile change interval), and looked very fresh when I checked it (hot) before my last ride; it still had much of the red color that Motul has when it is new. I checked the engine oil level before my last ride, when the engine seized, and again verified that it was within the range specified in the service manual.

    The tech at Munroe Motors told me that he decided to "drop" the oil from my bike, and found that it had some white foam/sludge. This is common in small block Guzzis before the oil is warmed up, especially when the weather is cold, as I am sure that Moto Guzzi engineers will confirm. It does not indicate that the oil is in poor condition. The reason that the oil was not able to warm up to operating temperature and burn off this water-based foam (what the dealer characterized as "sludge") is because the bike was ridden 200 feet before it seized. It is also impossible to verify correct oil level when the engine is cold, as it was when I brought it to Munroe Motors. Per the owner's manual: "ENGINE OIL LEVEL MUST BE CHECKED WHEN THE ENGINE IS WARM AND WITH THE DIP-STICK INSERTED BUT NOT SCREWED IN. IF YOU CHECK LEVEL WHEN THE ENGINE IS COLD, OIL LEVEL COULD TEMPORARILY DROP BELOW THE 'MIN' MARK. THIS SHOULD NOT BE CONSIDERED A PROBLEM PROVIDED THAT THE ALARM WARNING LIGHT AND THE ENGINE OIL PRESSURE ICON DISPLAY DO NOT TURN ON SIMULTANEOUSLY."

    Again: when I last checked the engine oil (when it was hot, immediately after my last ride before the engine seized) it was in good shape, as would be expected after having been used for only 2000 miles. The engine oil level was above the "min" line on the dipstick when checked, indicating that it was within the specified range. The oil and engine lights never came on before the engine seized, also pointing to the fact that seizure was not due to incorrect level or condition of the engine oil. The bike remained in my garage after I performed the last oil check, and lost no oil between the last check and the ride when the engine seized (or afterward). The engine also ran perfectly until the moment it seized. Additionally, my V7ii falls squarely in the range of VIN #'s that had missing crankshaft thrust bearings from the factory and have had engines replaced by Piaggio/Moto Guzzi.

    I am profoundly disappointed and surprised by Moto Guzzi's decision not to back their product which has so few miles, falls within the known VIN range of engine failures due to missing thrust bearings, and which had all services performed per the service manual's recommendation. I recognized that I brought the bike to the dealer 10 months beyond the warranty period (when the engine seized), but since evidence seems to point to a manufacturing defect rather than an error in required maintenance, I respectfully request that Piaggio reconsider offering some sort of compensation. In the meantime, I have contacted the dealer to arrange for transportation of the bike.

    Please let me know who I need to speak with to formally appeal this decision.

    Thank you again for your time, and for your help.

    Sincerely,

    Screwed customer ;)
     
  12. Midnite

    Midnite Tuned and Synch'ed

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    A somewhat happy update:

    A few days after sending the email above and not getting a response, I decided to send a quick follow-up to the rep imploring her to tell me how I could follow up with management. I also threw in a line about how I had consulted with an attorney, and was prepared to take legal action if MG didn't offer compensation. Lo and behold, I received a response shortly thereafter stating that they take my concern seriously, that she'd pass my latest email along to "her superiors", and that someone would be contacting me shortly. It took nearly two weeks, but the "Director of After Sales" at Piaggio in Costa Mesa called me yesterday to follow up. He asked me to explain my concern, which I did, emphasizing my deep disappointment that Moto Guzzi/Piaggio wouldn't offer any compensation at all to the original owner of a well-maintained bike that experienced an unexplained engine seizure. To his credit, he patiently listened, and admitted that though the bike was out of warranty, there was most certainly something wrong with the engine that caused it to seize.

    Interestingly, when I tried to bring up the missing thrust washer issue, and that I was aware that V7ii's with VINs before and after mine had failed or had engines replaced on MG's dime, he flatly and calmly denied that this was the reason. He stated that the 'omission of parts at the factory' explanation that has cropped up on forums is unsubstantiated, and that he hasn't seen one bike that had missing thrust washers from the factory. This from a guy who's been working for MG since the mid-late 80's, and is in a significant managerial role for Piaggio, overseeing warranty claims among other things. He stated that it was an issue related to clutches continually falling out of adjustment, but didn't elaborate further. All in all, I found him to be a thoughtful, knowledgeable, and credible person to deal with.

    He eventually offered to locate and send me a new engine free of charge to compensate for the faulty engine, but told me that I would need to pay a dealer to install it since its technically out of warranty (they'll warranty the new engine for a year, and can only do that if it is installed by techs that have had the 'proper training', which as it turns out, is one of his roles at Piaggio). I tried asking if he could send it to Todd or another mechanic, and he told me flat out that they wouldn't do it.

    He did tell me that I could choose the dealer though, so now I have to pick my poison... Curious to know if anyone would trust a specific MG dealership to install a new engine... preferably in the SF Bay Area. Munroe Motors in SF is closest, but reviews on the service department are mixed, and I've found the service manager to be surly and not too pleasant to deal with (can't personally speak to the quality of their work yet).

    In the end, I'm relieved to have a path forward to getting my bike back on the road, and that they offered to provide a new engine - even if they're not covering the cost of installation. Now, I have to wait for the Italian factories to open back up...

    As always, I appreciate the advice and feedback that Todd and others in this community have provided.

    Hope everyone is staying safe, and getting out to ride!
     
    Jpcarter likes this.
  13. GTM®

    GTM® Administrator Staff Member GT di Razza Pura

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    :wasntme:
    Good news, but get a quote on the labor. You don’t have many options as you know. Mind sharing first name only on whom you spoke to there or direct email is fine too. They have immense turnover, and only one guy I know in Costa Mesa is still there... and no way no how has anyone been there since the 80’s. They have had two owners in the last two decades. Most of those from even a decade ago are long gone.
    Also, their M.O. is always deny deny deny. Love to hear justification of the video I posted above, and several motors I had on my shop with <1k miles with an oil pan full of oil and metal shavings... and lastly several friends that worked at dealers that exposed this mess to begin with.
     
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  14. Midnite

    Midnite Tuned and Synch'ed

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    Thanks for the advice about quotes: will do. I'm more concerned about the quality of work at this point than the price tag, so just want to deal with a shop I can trust. The gent I spoke with is Erik. He told me, for what its worth, that they'd take the original engine, tear it down and tell me what they found.
    If and when I get that update, I'll post it here. In the meantime, as mentioned, I'm just happy to have a way forward... which very likely may have been the long game that Piaggio was playing the whole time. I'd pay good money to watch you have a conversation about this with him, Todd. Unfortunately, I'm not as well-equipped. ;)
     
  15. V700Steve

    V700Steve GT Reference GT di Razza Pura

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    Erik was in charge in 09 w/I was at CostaMesa last. The only employee from MotoAmerica was Brad our Tech Rep and he's stretched out to a vast area these days. They were swapping motors w/I retired. The guy I taught was quitting cause they only paid 4hrs for the work and 5 motors were sitting on the floor waiting to go back. He's now working at something else.
    Good luck with it, I'd just get it done at local shop. They had a Tech bulletin on it, I don't see how they can say it didn't happen.
     
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  16. Ian Ebstein

    Ian Ebstein Just got it firing!

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    Hey all, sadly I'm trying to figure out if I'm in the same boat here too. I've read through the thread a couple times and lots of these posts seem to describe my experience. I want to at least add to the pile, if not look for some advice.

    I've got a 2014 Moto Guzzi V7 Stone VIN ZGULWUA05EM200130, that's currently sitting dead at the shop. For a couple of months I had clutch cable problems where my ride would start fine, but after a while it would lose just enough tension to make shifting difficult and I would have to pull over and adjust at the handlebar. It was manageable until it wasn't and I lost all tension and stalled out in traffic one day. So I call my shop and they pick up the bike. Fast forward two weeks and they diagnose that the flywheel is moving forward and back when the clutch lever is stroked, and they believe crank shims fell out -- and that the engine needs to be replaced.

    The bike is currently at around ~6,400 miles and this appointment at the shop was also supposed to be for its 6k service. Piaggio requested service history which has all been done by the book, but then said they couldn't offer any goodwill because it's too far out of warranty.

    I'm at the point of trying to escalate my case with Piaggio, but want to get a read from this thread as this seems to be especially rare for my model. Does this sound in line with the rest??
     
  17. frnco

    frnco Tuned and Synch'ed

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    Yeah it sounds familiar. But my failure happened at around 900miles few months after purchase

    i remember adjusting the clutch lever, i had a wrench always with me and finally I stalled and they had to replace the entire engine or or least the bottom crank part ( i know becAuse i had a scratch on the bottom and after the replacement it was gone)

    bottom line I feel they don’t cover factory defects for life... but sure is it sounds like a factory defects not your fault or bad maintenance
     
  18. GuzziMoto

    GuzziMoto GT Reference GT Contributor

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    If it has the same issue others have, it sounds like there will be a part missing in the clutch mechanism. If that part is missing, it is missing. And if so, there is no way to suggest that it is due to poor maintenance or anything like that. It is either there or not there. Parts can fail, but if a part isn't installed it is clearly on whomever built the motorcycle.
    It isn't that the part falls out, it sounds like it wasn't installed in the first place. If they take it apart and the crank moves anything like in Todds video, odds are the shim bearing was never installed.
     
  19. Midnite

    Midnite Tuned and Synch'ed

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    Nearly six months later (thanks in large part to glacial delivery times from the motherland in the time of COVID), I picked up my V7ii from Spirit Motorcycles in San Jose - with a new engine. I fired it up in the lot, and apart from the wonky factory fueling warm-up, it seemed to be in good working order again. After loading it up in the trailer and reviewing the paperwork, I noticed that they filled it with Castrol Power 1 10-50 (of course they OVER-filled with the wrong grade of oil from the very beginning). I'll get in there and do the cleaning-up-the-airbox routine, then siphon some out to get it back down to a workable level, but am wondering... Is it okay to leave this oil in for the first 600 break in miles even though it's 10-50 rather than 10-60? I'm assuming it'll be okay, but am curious what the Guzzi gurus suggest.

    At any rate, I'm beyond happy to have the ol' girl back in my garage and running again - even if it took heaven and earth, and $650 worth of labor cost, to get her back.
     
  20. Kev M

    Kev M Cruisin' Guzzisti

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    Been a long time since I logged on here but was drawn by an alert of a new post.

    I just wanted to comment that I believe the talk of missing thrust washers from the factory (which I had often repeated) may have been a misunderstanding from the start.

    Last summer/fall when the Guzzi demo trailer was making its way around the country with the V85 I took an opportunity to visit a very respected Guzzi dealer/mechanic in CT named Jim Hamlin.

    We talked about this problem and the run of bad motors. He took the opportunity to show me a few that he'd replaced and disassembled. He explained and showed me that it was not that thrust washers were not installed, but that the crankshafts themselves were machined out of spec (undersized) badly enough that the thrust washers could move out of position, blocking the oil passage and causing catastrophic wear on the washer. This rapidly allowed additional lateral play which caused the clutch to keep going out of adjustment since the whole crankshaft was basically migrating backwards in the block as the washer or even block itself (if the washer fell completely out of place) was ground away.

    He believes the factory doesn't know for sure how many cranks were bad which is why the range of effected VINs is only an estimate and doesn't guarantee the problem. I believe there was even one case (I don't remember if it was at his shop or the rep told him about it) where the engine was replaced with a new one off the shelf at the factory that also had a bad crank.

    Anyway I guess a variance in how badly out of spec a given crank was could account for why some bad motors actually lasted thousands of miles before self-destructing.

    If the thrust bearings were actually just never installed it's unlikely any would have made it past break-in.

    Edit - let me add that I don't recall ever seeing/hearing of one that wasn't a V7II, though I guess it's conceivable that one or more bad cranks might have been produced on an earlier run like for a MkI.
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2020
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