Sludge trap?

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Jun 14, 2007
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I'm the third or fourth owner of my 73 850, which came to me with no service history and an apocryphal 5K miles on the odo (now 10). While I've done all of the other maintenance/upgrading I've thought necessary (okay, the rings and cam chain tensioner are still on the list but soon, soon...) I've never cleaned out the crankshaft sludge trap.

I run an oil filter and use Redline synthetic oil, known, among other things, for extremely strong detergent action.

How crazy is it not to tackle the sludge trap? What's the recommended cleaning frequency for those?

Thanks - BrianK
I wouldn't normally strip an engine to clean a sludge trap but I certainly wouldn't not clean it if the engine was apart.

There is no recommended service interval and normally they are only cleaned if the bottom end is receiving attention.

Nortons have a big trap and you have an inline filter. They are not as problematical in this area as Triumphs are reputed to be. I wouldn't expect problems at such a low mileage. In fact, I've never heard of a big Norton failing due to a blocked crank. A missing camshaft lobe is usually their way of telling you it's time to dismantle ! :roll:

...Usual disclaimers ! :)
If you have the crankshaft out of the cases, it should be done. Be shure to prime the crankshaft with oil before you start it up.

Ken G.
Thanks guys. If and when the bottom end is apart, I'll deal with it.
Don't be surprised that when you do get the opportunity to check the crank, you find absolutely nothing. The older Triumphs would have been the same way if an external oil filter had been fitted.

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