Welcome back folks,

In my last post about how far I have progressed with the strip down of the motorbike I didn’t actually go into how far I had progressed with the strip down of  the motorbike…take two!

The strip down has been an interesting part of the project. Having never really done more than the basics when working on a motorbike (fork rebuild, taking rear wheel off, bleeding brakes etc) it has been a good chance to see the inner workings.

Firstly, why am I going to as much effort taking everything off the bike?

If the bike hadn’t been sat for so long and was running, I may have got away with sprucing a few bits of the bike up, putting them back on and be done with it. But no, make no mistake, although it is a solid bike underneath, visually it looks like hammered shit. By whipping everything off, I get a chance to clean/repaint/powdercoat everything before it goes back on.  It has also allowed me to understand how the bike is put together, what parts of the wiring loom connect into what, what can be removed and not go back on. As I mentioned in one of my previous post’s, the bike never started which I strongly feel is a poor connection somewhere on  the electrical system. By taking everything off, I can start from fresh when putting it all back together, ensuring connections are properly grounded etc (I will do a post on motorbike electrics once I am further down the line on the project and I figure out what I need to do!). I also need to do some modifications to the frame. I intend to de-lug the frame. This will look at removing all the mounting points for the bodywork that are not going back on the bike, cleaning the lines of the bike up. I will also chop a bit of the frame off to tidy the tail up and continue to clean lines.

What I thought was a big enough garage for a motorbike project, a Harley Davidson and countless other shit that seems to accumulate in the garage is starting to raise the questions…I may have to store my Harley elsewhere over the winter….any takers? Should I just move into a 1000m^2 workshop already and stop pretending….

ANYWAY….onto some information and pictures!

Engine removal 

Where were we – exhaust is now off – I need to get the engine out and everything else off the frame so I can ruin it with a grinder.

There are a lot of parts you have to remove before the engine can be removed. Pretty much anything that connects to the engine and anything that will be in the way of the engine when trying to get it out the frame.

The brake pedal removal is straight forward – loosen the bolt and remove the pedal from the splined shaft with some gentle persuasion (rubber mallet).


The tachometer cable, clutch cable and starter motor cables were next, again relatively straight forward with only couple of bolts or fastenings holding them on.

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The tachometer cable is a funky piece of kit. This is used to give a read out of the revolutions per minute (rpm) of the engines crankshaft to the rider. The gear mates with a worm wheel which is cast into the engines camshaft (see images). This rotation carries through the cable (not unlike a small driveshaft) and into the dial on the handlebars. In the back of the dial is a magnet which is driven by the cable. This rotates inside a metal cup (speed cup), although not physically connected to the speed cup, the magnetic force caused by the magnet spinning also causes the speed cup to spin. this in turn drives a shaft which is connected to the needle you see on the dial….simples!

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There is a driveshaft with connects the gearbox to the back wheel which has to be disconnected to get the engine out. *Hint* use something to put between the spokes and the  frame to stop the wheel from spinning when removing the bolts

To make things easier I drained the oil (remember and get a big enough container). Engine oil is biodegradable so once you have it in the big container just pour it into the nearest pile of bushes or down the drain, whichever is easiest…(imagine…scarily this probably happens) Take the oil to the local recycling centre and they will get rid of it for you!

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The engine comes out of the frame to the right hand side and depending on how ham-fisted you are there are several ways to do it. The loosest method I have seen by far was by a redneck kicking seven shades of shit out of his bike and engine whilst laid on its side until he wrestled the frame free… as fun as that looked I believed there was another less damaging way…

The engine is held in with 3 bolts – 1 large one in the centre of the bike which also holds the foot rests on and two at the front of the frame. I used my motorbike jack and placed under the engine, took the weight and removed the bolts. I jacked the engine up high enough to clear the mounts but also to leave enough clearance on lower side of the frame. I built a makeshift platform to the same height as the jack next to the frame. I grabbed the engine and slid it onto the platform. Being a bit of a monster I picked the engine up and pressed it overhead a few times to show it who was boss – this step is optional though if you don’t feel comfortable. The engine was then laid down away from the bike. You may need a hand here to move it. I grabbed it and moved it a few feet but it was pretty heavy.

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Success! The engine is now out and the frame is looking bare. My next blog post will cover the final steps of the strip down…(part 3?) and go into what I want to do in more detail over the next few months.

To be continued