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Cracked header pipe

Discussion in 'Technical and Troubleshooting Torque' started by zhuk, Sep 24, 2016.

  1. Hey guys, just wondering if anyone has seen this issue before.

    Bought this '13 TU250 secondhand with roughly 2400ks on the clock, I ran over it with a finetoothed comb before purchase, all was OK. After about 4 weeks of riding I noticed this crack had appeared in the header pipe - quite clean and not all the way round the circumference, bit more than halfway. Being newly licensed I gotta confess I had dropped it once from a standstill (at about the 2 week mark). Rang a local Suzuki dealer who had originally sold the bike, they said it was unusual for this to come up on a bike so relatively unused, but it could have been the impact of dropping it plus engine vibration of a thumper which caused it, or it could be a manufacturing weakness. Now I dunno, but I'm sure a lot of people drop their bikes and don't get a cracked pipe from it lol a mate dropped his Nightster and it vibrates a fkton more than my bike, not to mention being almost 2x the weight - his pipe is fine.

    Couple of other shops I've contacted agreed it was pretty much unheard of for a bike this age, and one stationary drop shouldn't have done it; they were inclined to go with a manufacturing flaw and whether the whole pipe integrity might be a bit questionable down the track was brought up. All the mounting bolts etc are rock solid so there's been no possibility of free play with vibration that I can work oiut.

    Guess its only an academic question now, but just wondering if anyone has a few opinions to offer...throwing up a few pics to illustrate. Cheers :)




  2. You've got two choices ..

    1. Tig weld it.
    2. Buy new headers.

    Problem solved.
    • Agree Agree x 2
  3. It is so clean and straight that I would go with the manufacturing fault theory.
    • Agree Agree x 4
  4. have the offered a replacement ?
  5. It's like a hacksaw cut. Sure you don't have any enemies.....?
    • Funny Funny x 2
  6. Close up it's not straight, and there is evidence of either corrosion or plating failure further around. Evenn if the drop caused some misalignment, the join in the pipe there shouldn't be prone to "stress corrosion cracking"

    I vote manufacturing issue, and even though no warranty, might be worth flagging to Suzuki Aus? (not just dealer)
    • Like Like x 2
    • Agree Agree x 1
  7. Yep; only thing which makes me wonder about welding is if its an intrinsic fault, could other parts of the pipe ultimately fail in future. Might better to replace it for the peace of mind factor (presuming lightning's not gonna strike twice lol)

    Exactly what it suggested to me too cjvfr...makes the most logical sense imo. Plus those radiating lines which extend out from the ends of the crack look like stress lines to me (although I know bugger all about metals heh)

    Yeah, no unfortunately...it was out of 24 month warranty by 4 weeks. Rang Suzuki head office after the dealership, they were pretty adamant on that point.

    Damn! :wideyed:

    OK, now you got me thinking.....Lol

  8. Yeah mate, that was the second call I made, after the dealership. Asked them if it was any kind of known issue - they couldn't tell me and were unsurprisingly reluctant to go with the intrinsic fault line. Also they said even if it had been in warranty, the fact that I have no guarantee on how it was handled by the original owner, plus any marks on the bike would preclude a warranty claim anyway. Which personally, I find just a little bit bullshit.
  9. stalk a few local and US suzuki forums and see if there is a history of this. otherwise replace it and move on. if cost is a factor wrap it with muffler tape until you can pay for the replacement.

    it probably wasn't the drop that 'caused' it but that will be the default explanation given by the experts so doubt Suzuki Oz will feel obligated to help with the costs. maybe a wreckers can get you a cheap replacement.
    • Agree Agree x 1

  10. Agreed, I'm on it chillman. Haven't turned up anything online which mentions this issue as yet...by just about universal accounts its a pretty bombproof little bike - used extensively in the US for their learner MSF courses so would get abused and dropped a lot I'd imagine. I held off mentioning "the drop" when I first rang Suzuki, just to see if they would entertain anything about potential manufacturing causes but they wouldn't come at it.

    Doing the ring-around of wreckers I've come to realise how rare this bike in is Oz..would be up to my neck in pipes if it was a Ninja lol. But a couple of header pipes are up on ebay so I might have to go with that, while they are still available.

    Really appreciate the replies, guys - good to get a bit of confirmation of the only thing which made logical sense to me. Had been doing my head in slightly heh.
  11. Product needs to be fit for purpose and have a reasonable lifetime, according to Aussie consumer law, regardless of warranty length

  12. Yeah I thought that too mate, while checking up what Fair Trading and the ACCC had to say about it. Think it might be an idea to get onto them for an opinion? considering I'm not going to be getting any much of anywhere with Suzuki.
    • Like Like x 1
  13. totally agree though not sure if legally the manufacturer is responisble for damage that was arguably caused by a low speed drop. that would be classed as rider error and not be covered by any manufacturer. drop anything and it stops working properly and tell me which manufacturer would repair or replace the item, none I can think of.

    it's a good point about the US MSF courses using these bikes as they would get dropped regularly. yours may actually be a manufacturing fault but it may be hard to prove.

    what does a replacement header pipe cost?

  14. Hmmm its going to come to "rider error" I'm sure...and as you say, hard to prove in intrinsic fault in that case. But I might still see what Fair Trading thinks, just to have an offiial opinion.

    New header pipes RRP approx $380, plus 5 weeks to ship from Japan...so yeah I'd be looking at secondhand.
  15. actually, would be pretty easy for a Metallurgist to prove an intrinsic fault... but it would require cutting up the pipes to look at the internal structure of the metal.

    or $69 used (or maybe $49 if you pay with paypal and put in that code..)
    Exhaust header pipe Suzuki TU250X TU 250 2009 - 2016
    • Like Like x 1

  16. Hey yeah, much as I'd like to try and prove it one way or another! a metallurgist might be a bit beyond me $ wise lol

    That's not a bad looking pipe, cheers for the link mate :) Surface corrosion shouldn't matter, as long as it stays surface huh.
  17. if you do replace it, I could possibly do a failure analysis on it for a bit of fun :p
    of course would not be able to use my results for any legal proceedings, but would give you a better idea of why it failed (and yes, pipe would get chopped.. but you could chop out the offending bit and get it replaced, although then would not be plated in that section = wrap to cover?)

  18. Ha now that would be interesting! Just like to know, for my own satisfaction...I can't really believe that just dropping it from stationary doomed it tbh lol

    If its going to be replaced, its going to go anyway, huh! Definitely something to think about, cheers mate :)
  19. Split a tin can and get a couple of exhaust clamps. Problem solved! Not pretty !
    • Like Like x 1
  20. some black exhaust wrap over the top, no-one would know..
    • Agree Agree x 1