Oil leak in head???

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Jan 8, 2006
I just put my 850 back together and now have an oil leak coming from the front of the head.

It isn't at the head gasket level which is what I expected, the oil is coming out of the front of the head, three fins ABOVE the head gasket.

I can't see properly due to the crossover pipe and it looks like I've gotta do more surgery. The only thing I suspect in that area at that height is the three bolts at the front of the head, anyone have any suggestions or seen this before???
Three fins up is a classic. We've probably all been caught out with this one.

Because of the casting shape and the inclined engine, oil from both the inlet rocker cover and the rocker feed banjos will find its way out at this point. They're certainly the first things to check.

Good luck, I'm keping my fingers crossed for you.
oil leaks

My 850 was weeping oil the summer before last and it drove me crazy.
It turned out to be the exhaust rocker cover. I had trimmed the gasket as recommended in the Norton Tech Digest, but, that did not help. I ended up using a sheet of emery paper and a pane of glass to take the bow out of the covers, problem fixed.
If it turns out to be the rocker banjos,don't just try to tighten them down,if they are already snug. Pull them off,check them for cracks,and replace the washers.They will crack relatively easily if you over torque.We won't go into how I know this! :oops:

I gotta agree that it could be one or both of the valve covers. Had that problem myself many years ago. Fresh clean oil is difficult to see coming out from around the cover gasket. We usually look to see where it is dripping from and that can be deceiving.
Thanks for the responses which all pointed me in the right direction.

It turned out to be the LH rear rocker shaft cover gasket leaking and, as pointed out, the new oil was very hard to see running down the rocker housing and into the fins, exiting three fins up the head at the front!

Amazing. Thanks again guys!
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