Monday, March 23, 2009

Through the looking glass

Matt and I finally got around to shooting our next round of "project bike" interviews and it was interesting to be on the other side of the lens for a change. I have a renewed respect for everyone who put up with the hot lights and our countless questions.

Last weekend I got some feedback from one of our readers as well as about an hour to wrench on the bike and the results were promising. I bit the bullet and dropped one of the pipes, making it much easier to get the bowls back on the carbs.

As Chris pointed out, the enlarged gaskets will return to normal size on their own if you just give them a chance. I wish I would have known that before I re-sized the right-hand-carb's gasket.

So after about 20 minutes I had everything back together and turned on the fuel. As expected, the carb who's gasket I "adjusted" leaked, but after a bit of kicking I was able to get the bike to fire. It wouldn't idle however, so I experimented with figuring out if it was one side or the other that was acting up by removing one spark plug wire, then the other. Again no surprises, the right-side was acting up (the same side as the leaky carb) and it was doing what I can only explain as "surging slowly".

I thought about playing with the carb adjustments but I figured even if I was able to get it to behave it would just be screwed up again when I replace the gasket (I'm only guessing that the leak and the weird behavior are related because they came along at the same time, and the non-leaking side is working correctly). So for now I'm going to let it be, track down a new gasket and focus my efforts elsewhere.

Elsewhere being the rear brake.

I described the brake problem to Bill at Motorcycle Performance and he knew instantly what I was talking about. He told me all that I needed to do was loosen the rear axle nut, apply the brake and re-tighten. I'll be giving that a shot this week and hopefully I can check that item off the list.

With any luck I'll track down a gasket shortly and figure out if my midrange problem is resolved or if further investigation will be in order. For now I have something to work on (as well as making the bike street legal) so I'll focus on that.

On the film front we are closing in on our first rough cut (with placeholders for the footage that has yet to be shot, of course) which is very exciting. This will be the first time we've seen the footage assembled and having shot it over more than a year, there is footage that I haven't seen for a very long time in there. Hopefully we'll have something from that effort to share as well, but for now we're focused on making it to the spring run, which means back to the garage for me.

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