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Discussion Starter #41
The Carona weekends roll on and.........Ok, so, shit's gettin real......

As this is my first TOP END REBUILD I decided to take the engine out so I could do all the work on a bench.

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There's a fair bit of oily gunk on the fins below the head gasket, so it's possible that's blown and a cause of the low compression.......but I suppose we'll find out wont we.

And.....well, once the engine's out there's not much left is there, so the WHOLE thing is getting stripped down so the frame can get painted and other parts cleaned, polished, painted where necessary, re-greased and put back together. Worms, meet Can. :) hahahaha

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When I first started thinking of this project, I was always going to leave the frame WHITE.......then I had ideas about BLACK, but I've come around to WHITE again. Too much black can be too much, y'know. I found this image in my photo bucket that was one of the first to inspire me to create something with the old XR. I've read some really bad reviews on the build of this bike, but I love it........The white frame, the Red Tank, the black rims and engine.....I just thought it would also fit so nicely with the HONDA brand. So THIS is the look I hope she'll emulate.

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But at this stage she just looks like this.....haha

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So, there's a "little" bit of work to do before it looks anything like the Husky. ;)

Yep, right now she's just a frame with the Fork attached.

That'll come off soon and the frame will get some attention, clean up welds and respray white :).

I'm thinking I might even pull the rims apart and polish the black hubs to get them as clean as possible, respray if needed then either polish the Ali rims or paint them black and re-lace. IF the engine rebuild goes ok, I might spring for a new set of front and rear Black Rims and re-lace them onto the existing hubs? (Pretty sure that's possible) We'll see.

Suspension bearings will be checked, cleaned and re-greased wherever possible. Rest of the ALI Bits will get polished and re-installed after cleaning.

And yes, I'm SERIOUSLY considering painting the engine Black & Polishing those beautiful Air Cool fins too.
 

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Discussion Starter #42
So, the engine is out, the Top is off

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and I'm trying to get the Cam Chain Tensioner loosened to remove the Cam Chain off the Cam Gear......As per these instructions in the manual.....

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How f&%ken difficult do you think it is to get a set of pliers to Grab that little wedgy bit???

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Nearly Bloody Impossible is how difficult! (grrr). Just not enough meat to get any purchase and lifting that thing is a bugger. You can see from the photo how the edges of the chamfered bit are getting chewed by the pliers slipping off.......

SO, I spoke to a mate who said, "You're gonna have to pull the clutch anyway, just release the tension from the bottom...."

So off came the R/H side.....

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Annnnnnnd then we come to the most RIDICULOUS piece of engineering I've come across in my entire 8 week career as a motorcycle mechanic......

Yes, Ladies and Gentlemen, Present to you, the HONDA Clutch Basket Nut.

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Hard enough to get off at the best of times, but with the added wisdom of making it some crazy "4 Pronged Round Nut Thingy". Too much Saki the day the Nippon Team designed this one. haha. ;)

Anyway, the Nut removal tool is on it's way.......

I could use a Brass Drift, so I've been told, but I don't have one, and the nut removal socket is only AUD$15, cheaper than a brass drift. So I'll wait.

The BIG CHALLENGE is how to stop the Clutch Centre from Turning......

There's no Gear to wedge anything against on the R/H Side?

So, based on some videos I've seen of people doing this with the engine still ON the bike (yes, I'm a FOOL for removing the donk) I'm planning on putting it in 6th Gear, bringing out my trusty, shit covered Plumbing Stilsons, and Grabbing the Front Sprocket on the L/H side to crack the nut.......

If anyone has a better idea and can explain it well, I'd love to hear it.

Wish me luck. :LOL: ;)
 

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I'm pretty sure there is an easier way to stop the gears on the clutch basket from turning :/
what happens if you start to engage the kick start gear, does that stop the clutch from turning backwards?

Alternatively refer to the shop service manual to see if there is a special tool to do the job and improvise something based on the same principal.

Wish I could be of more help, best luck.
If it helps any, you are doing things the right way, most noobies would have powder coated the frame and engine and purchased a stupid amount of aftermarket crap before they even got the motor sorted.
 

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Discussion Starter #45
I'm pretty sure there is an easier way to stop the gears on the clutch basket from turning :/
what happens if you start to engage the kick start gear, does that stop the clutch from turning backwards?

Alternatively refer to the shop service manual to see if there is a special tool to do the job and improvise something based on the same principal.

Wish I could be of more help, best luck.
If it helps any, you are doing things the right way, most noobies would have powder coated the frame and engine and purchased a stupid amount of aftermarket crap before they even got the motor sorted.
Thanks Trials Rider, I was really having fun until this little bastard reared it's ugly head....haha.

Tight as a Nuns Nasty.......scuse the french.

I've read all sorts of stuff about wedging timber or a nickel into a gear somewhere, but I can't see anywhere obvious to do that, and I don't want to break anything by doing something stoopid. (i've already bent one bolt the Stilsons were pushing up against while holding the front sprocket. No biggy, but I don't wanna break something big)

If anyone has a concise explanation of how to stop the internal clutch bit from spinning, so I can undo this nut, I'll be very appreciative! :)

If you have an impact wrench, the nut will come right off.
Thanks Upperb.

I do have an impact wrench and have received the clutch nut 4 prong removal tool, but my problem, as above, is that the clutch just spins.

Are you saying the nut will come off with an impact wrench, WITHOUT stopping that thing from spinning?
 

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Discussion Starter #46 (Edited)
If you have an impact wrench, the nut will come right off.
HOLY SHITBALLS! UpperB, You're a bloody Genius! (y):love:(y)

Impact Wrench, braaap braaap braaap, and OFF SHE COMES. No holding the centre clutch or front sprocket required......

In the words of some famous dude......"Well, that was easy?"

CHAMPION! Thank you Sir!
 

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Discussion Starter #47 (Edited)
Ok, so, with a follow up thanks to UpperB and this little beauty....

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The clutch nut was removed in a flash (after much previously unnecessary swearing & general breaking of shit trying to do it with a socket)

And the Cam Chain Tensioner Removed.......(Either someone has shortened my tensioner or the Manual is Rubbish......there's simply NO WAY you can push that wedgy bit up far enough to slide a paper clip underneath. Even with the tensioner fully compressed, that wedgy bit wont come up far enough. Slide a paper clip under?....Rubbish.)

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Cam is out and from my highly experienced trained eye, the lobes look ok......?

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And Head is.......OFF! :)

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I'm assuming that if the head gasket was doing it's job 100%, then the whole face of that joining surface would be clean.....like the L/H side.......not dark and carbon (or oil?) deposited like the R/H side? Anyway, unless the cylinder is toast, I think this part will be the only part I send away to get done in a shop. I keep thinking how my missus is going to react when I tell her I'm going up the road to get a Head Job. :ROFLMAO:

And this is what the top of the cylinder looks like....

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The cylinder itself......

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A mate I've shown these photo's to suggested it looks "Ok", might just need a hone," but that it needs physical inspection to be sure....So, fingers crossed.

The piston is a Wiseco 77mm jobby. 4466MO7700

So, if it does end up just being Head Job (yay for head jobs!), Rings and Hone, my mate reckons technically we should HONE and then measure to see whether the 3032X ring set for this piston will still suit???


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Lots of black burnt stuff. Burning oil?

Next step, take the cylinder off and inspect the piston..........

Stay tuned. :p
 

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Piston rings can become gummed up with carbon and combustion residue resulting in a poor seal. Physical cleaning of the parts and reassembly can sometimes correct that situation with no replacement parts actually required, I had that happen once. You can still see the affect of the previous hone on that barrel but I see no scars from the piston travel, that is a good indication.


Is your service an Original Equipment Manufacturer shop manual or one of those re-write ones by a third party? The third party ones are useless if you have an OEM service manual, sometimes they are even inaccurate and/or misleading.
 

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Crankcase ventilation: You will see a lot of people come through this place where they have removed the air box and stuck a tiny pod filter on the crankcase breather. Those people are idiots because the filter becomes plugged and now their crankcase is turned into a pump.

A single cylinder engine that has a piston displacement of 250cc moves 250cc with of dirty oily air in and out through the crankcase breather on every stroke. That's a Lot of high speed air movement. Added to that is pressure from blow-by. Blow by exists even on a brand new motor.
 

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Consider TrialsRider’s remarks carefully. It is, as he makes clear, important to keep crankcase pressure low, to achieve the most power (it robs power to compress crankcase air) and to minimize “blow-by” of oil from the crankcase, past the rings and into the combustion chamber. Drawing a negative pressure by routing the breather to the airbox helps in this regard, instead of routing it to atmospheric pressure or sticking a filter on the crankcase port (increasing crankcase pressure in the process).
Remove the rings from the piston and clean everything. DO NOT run a hone in the cylinder unless and until you decide that you will be replacing the piston rings. And if you do hone the cylinder, do so only after you have confirmed with the ring manufacturer, the correct grit hone to be used.
After you clean everything, you need to take some measurements. Do you have inside and outside micrometers? Are you comfortable with using them and confident that your readings are accurate? If not, a local machine shop or auto or motorcycle shop would probably measure the piston and the cylinder for you for free or for a couple bucks. Look in your service manual for specifications for each. Remember that the greatest cylinder wear occurs near the top, where the top ring is forced against the cylinder wall at high pressure, during combustion.
 

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Discussion Starter #51
Piston rings can become gummed up with carbon and combustion residue resulting in a poor seal. Physical cleaning of the parts and reassembly can sometimes correct that situation with no replacement parts actually required, I had that happen once. You can still see the affect of the previous hone on that barrel but I see no scars from the piston travel, that is a good indication.

Is your service an Original Equipment Manufacturer shop manual or one of those re-write ones by a third party? The third party ones are useless if you have an OEM service manual, sometimes they are even inaccurate and/or misleading.
Thanks Trials Rider....

Yeah, my service Manual is a Haynes one, bought it when I bought the bike in 97-98. It is kinda confusing sometimes.....

Here's a couple of better photos of the piston and barrel.....

Some vertical lines on the barrel, but FEELS smooth as a baby's bum. Can't feel anything with fingernail.....nothing, so the photo might make it look worse than it is....

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The piston itself looks good. Also some small vertical marks on the horizontal lines above the rings, but looks in pretty good shape?

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Crankcase ventilation: You will see a lot of people come through this place where they have removed the air box and stuck a tiny pod filter on the crankcase breather. Those people are idiots because the filter becomes plugged and now their crankcase is turned into a pump.

A single cylinder engine that has a piston displacement of 250cc moves 250cc with of dirty oily air in and out through the crankcase breather on every stroke. That's a Lot of high speed air movement. Added to that is pressure from blow-by. Blow by exists even on a brand new motor.
My crank case breather was just vented to AIR via this tubing. Top wasn't connected to anything and bottom the same, just vented out the bottom near the swingarm..... My intention was to just hook it back up as it was?

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Consider TrialsRider’s remarks carefully. It is, as he makes clear, important to keep crankcase pressure low, to achieve the most power (it robs power to compress crankcase air) and to minimize “blow-by” of oil from the crankcase, past the rings and into the combustion chamber. Drawing a negative pressure by routing the breather to the airbox helps in this regard, instead of routing it to atmospheric pressure or sticking a filter on the crankcase port (increasing crankcase pressure in the process).
Remove the rings from the piston and clean everything. DO NOT run a hone in the cylinder unless and until you decide that you will be replacing the piston rings. And if you do hone the cylinder, do so only after you have confirmed with the ring manufacturer, the correct grit hone to be used.
After you clean everything, you need to take some measurements. Do you have inside and outside micrometers? Are you comfortable with using them and confident that your readings are accurate? If not, a local machine shop or auto or motorcycle shop would probably measure the piston and the cylinder for you for free or for a couple bucks. Look in your service manual for specifications for each. Remember that the greatest cylinder wear occurs near the top, where the top ring is forced against the cylinder wall at high pressure, during combustion.
Thanks UpperB...

Good advice. I am taking the head to Greg Ball Engineering (comes highly recommended from a few of my friends) so they can do the Valve and head service work. They've already offered to have a quick look at the piston and barrel, so that'll be good to have some confirmation there.

I have some analog vernier calipers that I'm comfortable with, but they obviously aren't as accurate as a micrometer. It'll give me a sense of where we're at though.....

Will update after I've taken the bit up to the shop...

Thanks again!
 

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Just use a pair of inside callipers, you don't even need the measure to measure wear if there was any since last over-bore

set them to gently fit the top of the cylinder above where the piston rings travel, if it is that big all the way down you are good to go.
, there has to be a way to see if the valves hold pressure, if they do that should also be good to go, ;) get creative, will save you on the valve job if it's not needed. stick an air valve stem in the spark plug hole, bolt a flat plate on the head where the compression ring is and see if it holds air pressure lol
 

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Discussion Starter #53
Just use a pair of inside callipers, you don't even need the measure to measure wear if there was any since last over-bore

set them to gently fit the top of the cylinder above where the piston rings travel, if it is that big all the way down you are good to go.
, there has to be a way to see if the valves hold pressure, if they do that should also be good to go, ;) get creative, will save you on the valve job if it's not needed. stick an air valve stem in the spark plug hole, bolt a flat plate on the head where the compression ring is and see if it holds air pressure lol
Thanks TrialsRider..... The guys up at Greg Ball Engineering are supposed to be top notch, so, I'll take the head up there and see what they say, both job and cost wise before I get the gas ax out and start creating the head pressure tester contraption you're talking about.....haha. thanks mate. (y)
 

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Discussion Starter #54 (Edited)
The head is up at the Shop, still waiting on the diagnosis, so keeping fingers crossed it's all going to be sweet.

So, I took the time yesterday to settle into the garage with some rags and brass brushes, a tub of Turps, and Roy and HG Bludging on the Blind Side, then Grandstand on the ABC (Can't WAIT for the footy to come back) and start cleaning up some of the parts that'll be thrown back on the bike soon enough.........

Mainly the suspension and linkages. They were filthy.

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Now they're not....

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There's the usual scuffs and scratches you'd expect on a 30y.o dirtbike swingarm, but that's no problem. I'll polish them out as best I can and that's it.

The frame got an initial clean today as well, in prep for paint, but it'll get more before the paint is actually applied. Waiting on Seat Loop to arrive. :)

On a side note, I rode my KTM last weekend and had one rocky tip over that saw this "Burst into Tears Worthy" dint in the Header Pipe. Ok, I'll admit it, I might have cried and swore at the same time when I saw it.....

Sensitive content, not recommended for those under 18 Show Content
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(If you're seeing a sensitive content warning about the above picture, I'm not sure why, it truly is just a picture of my dinted header pipe. Certainly doesn't look like any vagina I've seen? hahaha)

But, a little birdy told me about the "Fill 'er full o water and stick 'er in the Freezer" trick......

So for anyone who has cried over dinted header pipes (like me) or doubts the efficacy of the dark science behind the wise old bikers who tried this in the first place.........here's the exact same section of pipe after freezing in the kitchen overnight.

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WOW huh! :D(y)🍺 Not perfect, but bloody close enough I say. (Tears of joy followed)

Anyway, Wheels and Fork legs are next cab off the rank.........stay tuned.
 
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