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Thread: Seeping float bowls??

  1. #1
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    Default Seeping float bowls??

    I've been chasing a problem on a friend's 1979 GS1000E where all the float bowls seep fuel to varying degree. I've replaced the gaskets twice but the problem persists. I've read through countless posts and several say if the float level is slightly high and above the level of the gasket surface they will leak/seep? I set the floats with a dial caliper at 24mm. I'm going to purchase one of the float bowl Z1 tube attachments to check the level when filled but don't have it now. Over the years I've gone through a half dozen sets of carbs with no issues and set the carb floats up the same way and have never had a fuel seep problem with any of them. The needle and seats on these VM carbs appear to be working fine and don't overflow the stand pipes in the bowls and the bowl mating surfaces are straight and been checked with a straight edge. Are there certain gaskets that seal better than others and are less prone to seeping fuel? In one or two of the posts I went through it was stated that it is normal for the gaskets to seep if the fuel level is above the parting line where the gasket fits. It's hard to believe a quality gasket wouldn't be fuel tight?



    Thanks, Pat
    78' GS1000EC
    79' GS850GN
    79' GS1000N
    79' GS1000EN
    81' GS1100EX

  2. #2
    Nessism's Avatar
    Nessism is offline Forum LongTimer GSResource Superstar
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    A piece of clear tubing pencil point sharpened on one end can be threaded into the float bowl drain screw threads and affect a seal adequate to use the tube for measuring fuel level. The spec is something like 3-4mm below the gasket surface, but please check the factory manual for the exact number. Adjust fuel level as required by changing the float height. After that, I'd be sure to get some thick float bowl gaskets like the ones sold by Z1. I've seen some aftermarket gaskets, such as those sold for cheap on ebay by hildebrandtgasketcompany, that are made from super thin material so be careful what you buy.

  3. #3
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    Sometimes the brass 'tang' which makes contact with the float needles get little dimples in them and the float needle hangs-up and causes it to seep.Have you checked the float needles for wear ?

  4. #4
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    Some gasket materials are more porous than others will draw fuel like a wick.
    Don't put them on dry..
    Grease them both sides and lightly rub it in between your thumb and forefinger.
    This will help seal against wicking and also make clean removal and possible re-use much easier.
    Mikuni Viton Choke Plunger Seat Renewal.
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  5. #5
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    I put on the thicker Z1 gaskets and greased them with wheel bearing grease and this solved the seeping problem. Thanks for the tips!
    78' GS1000EC
    79' GS850GN
    79' GS1000N
    79' GS1000EN
    81' GS1100EX

  6. #6
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    Have just done exactly that (the grease method) after suffering fuel weep with aftermarket gaskets.
    No more fuel weep/seep!
    VM26SS on my 78 GS750E.
    Cheers, Andy

    Current bikes... 78 GS750E, 72 CB500K1
    Previously owned...
    01 VFR800Fi, 67 Honda Sports 90
    71 Yamaha 175 CT2, 73 Yamaha RD250 (great bike!), 79 Yamaha XT250T
    75 Kawasaki KX125 (little screamer!)
    BMW R65, BMW R80, BMW R100LT

  7. #7
    KEITH KRAUSE's Avatar
    KEITH KRAUSE is offline Forum Guru Charter Member
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    I also had weeping bowl gaskets and made a topic recently. My fix was the Z1 gaskets. They're softer and more pliable. I didn't use any grease. I can see where a light coat of bearing grease could help the bowl gaskets, as it does when used on the valve cover gasket.
    My opinion is some of the genuine Suzuki gaskets are harder than they used to be. Maybe they sit on a shelf longer or are made differently, I don't know. I used to have no problems. I even use stainless steel hex bolts to get them a little more tighter and it isn't enough.
    Ed suggested the Z1 gaskets and I'm glad he did.
    And on the seventh day,after resting from all that he had done,God went for a ride on his GS!
    Upon seeing that it was good, he went out again on his ZX14! But just a little bit faster!

  8. #8
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    How was the delivery from Z1? I waited about 5 months for delivery from Bike Barn on case gaskets.. Thanks!
    -Mark
    Boston, MA
    Suck Squeeze Bang Blow..

    1980 GS850G with 79 carbs.....

  9. #9
    KEITH KRAUSE's Avatar
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    My delivery from Z1 was sooner than expected, about 5 days I think.
    I do have an update on my float bowl gaskets. After about a month and about 50 miles, I noticed a small amount of leakage from 2 of the gaskets. Not a big deal right now, but I thought it was 100% fixed.
    I have stainless steel hex screws on the bowls and I'll give them all just 1 more snug down and if there are still leaks I'll just have to live with it. Just another mystery issue that's getting on my nerves. It won't take much more before I give up on owning an old bike. I bought it brand new for my 23rd birthday so the bike is part of my life. That makes it hard to give up on it.
    And on the seventh day,after resting from all that he had done,God went for a ride on his GS!
    Upon seeing that it was good, he went out again on his ZX14! But just a little bit faster!

  10. #10
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    thank you for the feedback, I may order some gaskets along with fuel tee orings. good luck and stay safe.
    -Mark
    Boston, MA
    Suck Squeeze Bang Blow..

    1980 GS850G with 79 carbs.....

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