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Oil sight glass?

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by Mellowyellow, Nov 27, 2009.

  1. Looking at my clutch cover with a site glass, I would say it may not be easy to install, but then I have never tried. It almost looks as though it has been crimped into place. I think the advice from Travis about buying a case already fitted with a glass may be best. I do like it though as when my engine is running oil circulation is clearly visible.
  2. ReycleBill

    ReycleBill Part Time Tyrannicide XS650.com Supporter

    If someone really wanted a sight gauge for checking oil levels it would be easiest to install 2 elbows with clear line between them as is sometimes done with gas tanks.
  3. kelso

    kelso XS650 Addict

    Huh? That's a pic of his bike...or am I missing something?
  4. XSLeo

    XSLeo XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    To replace that window it presses out from the outside. The new one presses in from the inside. No crimps no nothing. It just sets in with a press fit. On modding an old cover to fit the window the case is to thin in that area. Would need to weld up inside and out. machine the holes. Hope you get it right.
    Just buy one with a window.
  5. KentMoney

    KentMoney XS650 Addict

    I think recycle bill's idea is the way to go.

    i have a 1981 with the sight glass and it's worth jack shit. I use the dip stick to check oil, I can hardly ever eve see oil through the port!
  6. 5twins

    5twins XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    I like having the sight glass. I know it's not totally accurate but if I see nothing through it, I know it's time to do a proper check with the dip stick and maybe add a little oil.
  7. KentMoney

    KentMoney XS650 Addict

    its weird cause it's pretty hard to see anything even after a fresh oil change! perhaps it is meant to be read while on the center stand? I have to lean my bike significantly over to the left to be able to see anything in there.
  8. ReycleBill

    ReycleBill Part Time Tyrannicide XS650.com Supporter

    These XSs should always be level when checking the oil via sight glass or dip stick.

    Personally, I like my sight glass and have found it to be as accurate as the dip stick once you get used to it but I wouldn't recommend trying to put the glass in a case that wasn't made for it.
  9. XSLeo

    XSLeo XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    The oil gets checked with the bike standing straight up, on the center stand makes it easy. Whether you use the dip stick or the site glass.
    On mine if on the center stand the dip stick shows it half way between the marks. In the site glass it's at the upper mark.
    You won't see oil in the site glass on the side stand.
  10. Tim of DO THE TON

    Tim of DO THE TON XS650 Junkie

    I think if you were going to go through all this trouble I'd go the route of putting a clear lexan plate over the clutch basket so you could see the whole thing whirring around while checking the level of the oil.

  11. toplesschevy

    toplesschevy XS650 Member

    while we're on this topic of sight glass i have a question. this is my first xs. my sight glass shows no oil but my dipstick says full. which is true and why?! the only thing i could think of is that maybe the engine isnt level the way it was when the frame had a swingarm now that its hardtail and thats why the sight glass isnt showing idk, someone lay down the intel
  12. XSLeo

    XSLeo XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    Even on a stock bike the oil level might read off a bit if you are not on a level surface and up on the center stand. The book calls for it to be up on the center stand to check the oil.
    Now on a hardtail, at an oil change I would add exactly 2 liters, or 2.1 quarts. With the bike standing as straight up as I can get it. Warm it up, shut it down and check the level on the dip stick. Wherever the level reads on the dip stick is where you want to keep the level. If you can see it in the window, fine if not, fine.
    On stock bike on the stand the oil level if on the stick is about 1/2 way between the marks, then the window will show it at about the top mark.
    On a hardtailed bike the rear is lower. This makes the engine tilt back, this makes the oil settle toward the rear of the engine. The window is in the front. If the tilt is enough you won't see oil in the window and the proper amount of oil will read higher on the stick.
    Try putting two 2x4's or 2x6's under the rear wheel, then check the oil on the dipstick and in the window.
  13. SolidLex

    SolidLex XS650 Addict

    I've tried contacting this guy a million times. Still no luck. Still in the process of rebuilding my engine BUT this will be one of the last steps.
  14. Moturcyclenut

    Moturcyclenut Crusty old cormudgeon

    Five years too late, but here is my 2 cents worth of advice. The sight glass needs to be cleaned from time to time from the inside. When I got my bike you could not see anything through the glass. I used some spray parts cleaner and a frayed piece of very small cable that would fit through the spaces of the retainer. It took a bit of doing but it cleaned up real nice. Now the oil is visible once again. The window is a quick way of checking your oil, but the dip-stick is the sure way of checking your oil.
    lakeview likes this.
  15. fredintoon

    fredintoon Fred Hill, S'toon. Top Contributor

    Hi 'nut,
    I'm with you on a dipstick being better than a sight glass.
    You hafta squat down level with a sight glass to see the oil level while holding the bike upright which ain't easy when you are an old fart like me.
    With a sidecar the chair keeps the bike upright but you will need a mirror on a stick to see the sight glass.
    Checking an XS11 sidecar rig's oil level was when I started using a mirror on a stick because the XS11 don't have a dipstick
    seeing as the designers made the oil filler plug point directly at the transmission's moving parts.
    Carrying a mirror on a telescoping stick got to be a hassle so I made a dipstick out of a 4" hose clamp straightened out and formed into
    a T-shape to use when the rig was parked and the engine wasn't running.

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