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Old 08-05-2020, 11:36   #1
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Dropped a straw in my gearbox!!!!

While changing my gearbox oil the pick up straw at the base of my pump fell off into the gearbox!!!

Iím unable to get to it and am out of ideas. Tried a shop vac but nothing. Does anyone have any ideas? The unit is a KBW20. Iím on anchor in Antigua and so its imperative that I retrieve as I donít think itís a great idea to operate the gearbox with the straw inside. Essentially Iím stranded until I solve this.

Am I doomed to have to remove the gearbox and disassemble?

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Old 08-05-2020, 11:38   #2
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Re: Dropped a straw in my gearbox!!!!

A quick thought: is removing the side plate circled on this photo to gain access a stupid idea?
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Old 08-05-2020, 11:50   #3
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Re: Dropped a straw in my gearbox!!!!

I would think you could suck it out with the vacuum, but only once you get good air flow circulation first.

You could do this by removing the oil drain plug, draining your oil, then try the vacuum.
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Old 08-05-2020, 11:56   #4
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Re: Dropped a straw in my gearbox!!!!

I would think so too but no dice. Although I havenít drained from the bottom yet, I did suck out most all of the oil from the top prior to trying the shop vac. Additionally, I fear the straw is short enough that itís fallen to the side ass opposed to standing up vertically aligned with the hole.
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Old 08-05-2020, 12:10   #5
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Re: Dropped a straw in my gearbox!!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Swift Drift View Post
A quick thought: is removing the side plate circled on this photo to gain access a stupid idea?
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My thought too. Hoses look like they are going to a cooler. I Googled KBW20 to validate and see what's on the inside but couldn't find it on any diagrams - looks like that's the clutch/linkage on most.

If all the easy stuff via the drain/fill holes is exhausted, removing cover looks like your best bet. Hope you have gasket material......

As an aside, when I was 16 I bought a Yamaha 400 Enduro single cylinder 2-stroke. I ran it out of 2-stroke oil and it over-heated. So my very first mechanical foray was to remove the cylider and piston. I promptly dropped the circlip holding the piston wrist-pin into the gearbox. Access was awful - I bought a magnetic pickup tool and ground it down to get between the counterweight lobes on either side of the connecting rod. I fished for hours and got so discouraged thinking I would have to split the cases to get the circlip out. I parked it for a couple months until a cousin stopped by and asked about the bike. I told him the story - he insisted on trying to get the wrist pin out. He fished it out first try.

I hope your luck improves. I empathize with you.

Peter
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Old 08-05-2020, 12:19   #6
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Re: Dropped a straw in my gearbox!!!!

Small endoscopes are cheap. They even have LEDís. It might help you spot it and devise the best retrieval strategy.
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Old 08-05-2020, 12:31   #7
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Re: Dropped a straw in my gearbox!!!!

Get a pair of mechanical fingers too.
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Old 08-05-2020, 12:50   #8
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Re: Dropped a straw in my gearbox!!!!

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Small endoscopes are cheap. They even have LEDís. It might help you spot it and devise the best retrieval strategy.
Yes, use the ones that work with your cell phone. They usually come with probes and hooks, and you MIGHT get lucky.

I did the same thing to an MGA (car) tranny. Was able to find and retrieve it with an endoscope.
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Old 08-05-2020, 13:14   #9
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Re: Dropped a straw in my gearbox!!!!

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I would think so too but no dice. Although I havenít drained from the bottom yet, I did suck out most all of the oil from the top prior to trying the shop vac. Additionally, I fear the straw is short enough that itís fallen to the side ass opposed to standing up vertically aligned with the hole.
You need to open up something on the bottom of the gear box to allow air in. Without good air flow the vacuum won't move the straw.
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Old 08-05-2020, 13:33   #10
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Re: Dropped a straw in my gearbox!!!!

Wouldn't worry about it. As far as I can tell the gear is splash-oiled so there's no need to worry about clogging pickups, pressure lines or pump. The straw is polyethylene, it won't deteriorate in the oil, and the gears will tend to push it away from them as they rotate, not draw it in.

I don't really expect you to pay much attention to this advice, but it is sound.

Not that it's particularly relevant (manual gearboxes bear little resemblence to your gearbox), but I've seen various small metal parts dropped into gearboxes on several occasions, on car, truck and tractor transmissions, with no ill effect; the transmissions functioned normally with expected lifespans.
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Old 08-05-2020, 13:53   #11
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Re: Dropped a straw in my gearbox!!!!

Have you considered one of those small cameras that you can slip into conduits etc? You might be able to rig up a fishing tool on a separate small diameter rod to pull it out once you see it on the camera.
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Old 08-05-2020, 14:01   #12
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Re: Dropped a straw in my gearbox!!!!

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Wouldn't worry about it. As far as I can tell the gear is splash-oiled so there's no need to worry about clogging pickups, pressure lines or pump. The straw is polyethylene, it won't deteriorate in the oil, and the gears will tend to push it away from them as they rotate, not draw it in.

I don't really expect you to pay much attention to this advice, but it is sound.

Not that it's particularly relevant (manual gearboxes bear little resemblence to your gearbox), but I've seen various small metal parts dropped into gearboxes on several occasions, on car, truck and tractor transmissions, with no ill effect; the transmissions functioned normally with expected lifespans.
Intellectually, you're probably right. Emotionally, I'd have a hard time with leaving it in place. I'd constantly be listening for a change of sound, a clunk, a whir, anything. All sorts of phantom noises. Would drive me nuts.
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Old 08-05-2020, 14:32   #13
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Re: Dropped a straw in my gearbox!!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by jimbunyard View Post
Wouldn't worry about it. As far as I can tell the gear is splash-oiled so there's no need to worry about clogging pickups, pressure lines or pump. The straw is polyethylene, it won't deteriorate in the oil, and the gears will tend to push it away from them as they rotate, not draw it in.

I don't really expect you to pay much attention to this advice, but it is sound.

Not that it's particularly relevant (manual gearboxes bear little resemblence to your gearbox), but I've seen various small metal parts dropped into gearboxes on several occasions, on car, truck and tractor transmissions, with no ill effect; the transmissions functioned normally with expected lifespans.


I really want to believe this.... what about my clutches? Could they get messed up and not make proper contact, etc?
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Old 08-05-2020, 15:22   #14
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Re: Dropped a straw in my gearbox!!!!

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Originally Posted by Swift Drift View Post
I really want to believe this.... what about my clutches? Could they get messed up and not make proper contact, etc?
Clutches should be in packs, like a motorcycle clutch if you have ever had one of them apart, I don’t see how they could be hurt, but I can see how a tube may jam gears, it may eat it too, but it may bust something too as that “straw” is pretty tough.
I’d want it out. Me, if I couldn’t get it out with a scope and mechanical fingers, would remove the tranny, turn it upside down and shake it, it might work, and if not take it to a shop and have them disassemble and inspect everything and replace any worn parts, may as well start with a known good tranny if you have to pay to have it taken apart.

I think you will see it with a camera myself, it’s stiff so it didn’t go far. Get some mechanical fingers though so you can get it when you see it.
https://www.amazon.com/s?k=Mechanica...f=nb_sb_noss_2

I have a KBW-20 also and so I’m a little familiar.
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Old 08-05-2020, 15:41   #15
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Re: Dropped a straw in my gearbox!!!!

To be fair, if the gears don't just eat that plastic without blinking then they won't last very long as a gearbox considering the power they're transmitting. But there's a chance it might block some linkage and I'd want it out too for the reasons op said
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