Todd's ETV 1000 Caponord Page

Mad Props to Ken's Falco Page!

Aprilia Caponord Oil Change

The oil change procedure isn't documented in the US owner's manual, it's recommended that the dealer change your oil. It's really not that difficult, and they document the procedure in the European owners manual.

Location of oil change bolts (click to enlarge and see labels) Click on image to enlarge

Note: Instructions and torque values are from the European owner's manual, available from the 'links' section.

The first task is to remove the primary drain plug, but to access it you need to remove the engine cowling. The cowling is removed by removing the four fairing screws holding it in place. Two are in front of the cowling below the radiator, and one on each side of the cowling at the bottom. Start with the left side bottom screw, then the two under the radiator (there are metal spacers on each of these screws--they may drop, or stay attached to the cowling), and then the right side bottom. Note that the carbon canister is attached to the cowling, so support the cowling while you remove the last screw. I just let the cowling dangle by the hoses attached to the carbon canister.
Cowling after removal and bolt locations (click to enlarge and see labels) Click on image to enlarge

You can now access the primary drain plug on the bottom of the oil tank on the right side. It is a hex-cap bolt with a 10 mm head. When you have drained the oil, examine and possibly replace the crush washer, then tighten the bolt to 15 N-m (11 ft-lbs, 133 in-lbs). I got about 3 quarts of oil from the tank. I let it drain into a one gallon milk jug.

The second drain plug is located on the left side of the engine (see the location photo, above). It is a 6MM socket cap plug, and may have loc-tite on it (it took a lot of force to move it at first, and it went 'snap' when it finally moved). I got about a pint of oil from the secondary drain plug. I used a half gallon milk jug with a large hole cut into one side near the bottom to catch the oil. You can either leave it capped to use it as a catch pan, or uncapped to allow you to funnel the oil it catches to another container. The secondary drain plug is magnetic, and should be cleaned before reinstalling. Tighten the plug to 20 N-m (14.75 ft-lbs, or 177 in-lbs).

Remove the two oil filter cover bolts to expose the filter. They are 5MM socket cap screws. I got another pint or so of oil when I opened this cover. When you remove the two bolts and remove the filter cover, the filter may either be pressed into the cover, or it may stay on the engine. Mine stayed in the engine, and I had to use a pair of slip joint pliers to grasp the filter to remove it (it wasn't in tight, I just couldn't get a grip). The filter element is a Champion RB-X312. When looking at the engine, the plugged end of the filter faces out at you, the open end goes into the engine. Tighten the two oil filter cover screws firmly. None of the manuals (Capo service manual, Euro owners manual, engine service manual) give a tightening torque. Some Falco owners claim it to be 11 N-m (8 ft-lbs, 97 in-lbs).

The filter on the oil tank should be cleaned every other oil change. The Euro manual says to replace the original click-clamp with a screw-type hose clamp; make sure you have the replacement clamp before you remove the non-reusable click-clamp! First, remove the click-clamp and the hose. Next, unscrew the filter and clean it with compressed air. The manual says to 'check the seal of the filter on the tank', then tighten it to 30 Nm (22 ft-lbs, 264 in-lbs).

To replace the cowling, I started with the two fairing screws by the radiator. The screws first go through the fairing around the radiator, then through the cowling, then through the metal spacer behind the cowling, then into the securing clip. After buttoning everything back up, my 2002 Caponord took 3 or 3.5 liters of oil to get to the max line. I started the engine, and the oil level went down in the sight tube as the bike pumped the air out of the system. After about 1 minute, the level had dropped out of sight, so I shut off the engine, and filled it again to midway between min and max. Although the manual says an oil and filter change should require 4.5 liters or 4 and 3/4 quarts of oil, I took exactly 4 liters. At this point, I started up and went for a 10 minute ride, glancing at the sight tube every now and then. Simple as cake!

Seriously, huge thanks to Ken for doing his Falco page. Without that, I wouldn't have done my Capo, and it was as simple as his directions.


Hey, remember, we're all buddies, right? I'm telling you what I did to my bike, you're telling me what you did to yours. If you mess up yourself or your bike, well, I'm sorry, but I wasn't twisting your arm. Of course, Aprilia has trademarked their name and logo, and they don't know me from Adam.

Feel free to contact me: todd at caporider dot com You can always go home again