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Home Repair And Restoration

Bodging Weather

Work Date - 22 to 24 June 2018

By Ren Withnell

Weather huh? It rains and rains and rains and rains then after a cold wet winter summer comes along and the rain gets warmer. And yet it's been dry this weekend, it's been dry for a little while now. If this continues there'll be a hosepipe ban before long followed by stand pipes. 

My typical workshop scenario is myself wrapped in several layers to keep warm making movement of the limbs quite difficult. The persistent rain doesn't actually fall inside the tin hut but the wind whips it around and enough gets through the gaps to make everything at least damp. Lying on the cold damp concrete paving flags does wonders for my ageing bones. 

Sharon works on her bike half in half out of the shed on a wet and windy day
Poor Sharon has experienced the pleasure of spannering on a cold and wet Manchester day.

Being able to wear nothing more than a t-shirt and some old jeans with the legs cut off to make shorts is, well, weird frankly. Being warm is most peculiar. Having enough light to actually see what I'm doing is surreal. I like it, I like it a lot but I can't help feeling that this can't last and normal service will be resumed shortly.

I must make the most of this. 

First task. Grease the centrestand pivot pin on the CB500X. 

The CBF125's centrestand is now part of the frame, the only way that's ever coming off is with an angle grinder. This is common to CBF125s and CG125s and probably quite a few other motorcycles. The CB500X is *quite* clever, not really clever just slightly better thought out. 

The pivot pin of the centre stand totally seized into the stand
The last centre stand on the CBf125 had to be cut out. 
Centre stand pivot on the CBF125, rusty and covered in crud and muck
The present incumbant is staying put. Pfffffft.

I'd need to draw diagrams but the seized into the pivot centrestand experienced among you will understand "the big tubey bit inside the other big tubey bit is forced to turn when the centrestand is used". This prevents seizure of the tube inside a tube if it is used often enough.

Close up images showing the centre stand and pivot of the CB500X
The pin is fixed to the centre stand by the nut and bolt.

By having the whole pin move withing the frame's tube cause some friction and after 2 years and 23,500 miles it could do with some grease. Stripping the stand off and greasing it is simple enough. Getting the spring back on was the usual hour long finger mashing experience. 

I also gave the centrestand a lick of paint! Whoa whoa whoa, this is me we're talking about. While the stand was off I wiped it down with a petrol soaked rag and using an old rag dabbed on some black stuff from a tin that's been in the shed for 10 years. 

While looking at the tin I noticed it's heat proof paint. Oh I recall now. Yes I'd painted the pipes on the Fazer, the CBF250 and the CBF125 and all of them burnt the paint off after 100 miles. Crap paint. Still, while the lid is off I'll chuck a layer on the second hand pipe I've just fitted on the CBF125. It'll burn off but it can't do any harm.

A bit of black paint slapped onto the headers of the exhaust on the CBf125
Meh, just lob a dab of old paint on there.

The next day and the next task. Grease the CB500X rear suspension linkage. 

I hate linkages. They're expensive and prone to getting covered in rain and road dirt which causes them to seize and/or wear out. I had to angle grind out the linkages from my SLR650 at only 20,000 miles, that was an expensive job. Unless you're a racetrack hero the benefits or rising rate suspension are negligible to ordinary riders like myself.

The rear linkage of plates, connectors nuts and bolts of the rear suspension of the CB500X
There is just no need for all these nuts and bolts and moving parts.
A montage of motorcycle suspension without rising rate linkage
Plenty of good motorcycle DO NOT need rising rate linkage. Pffffft.

At 2 years and 23,500 the linkages *appear* to be OK on the 500. I shall strip and re-grease them in the hope they continue to *appear* to be OK for a long time and to hopefully assist with disassembly if/when they do start to fail. This is preventative work not remedial.

Luckily all the bolts are accessible without too much hassle. Luckily all the nuts and bolts come loose with a bit of heaving. Luckily all the bolts slide out of their tubes/collars/bushes, call them what you will. Luckily it all comes apart. Luckily it's all cleaned and re-assembled with a thick layer of fresh grease everywhere. I can't believe how lucky I've been.

The rising rate linkage is greased and cleaned and refitted to the bike
Right it's done and back together. Well done me.

The next task. Re-manufacture Sharon's Keeway gear linkage.

I hate linkages. They're expensive and prone to getting covered in rain and road dirt which causes them to seize and/or wear out. This applies primarily to suspension linkages but gear lever linkages too. Gear lever linkages are at least easier to get to and cheaper to fix.

Sharon's been complaining about sloppy gear changes on the Keeway RKS125. I'd put some shim metal into the lever pivot to help but it wasn't enough. On further inspection it seems the ball joints are quite worn causing a lot of play. I'd had a similar problem with my CBF125 so I knew what to do.

I have the linkage here at my place because I need my tools. I have to hacksaw off the old ball joints. The mounts for the ball joints are pressed in but the big hammer soon unpresses them out. I'd purchased 2 new rose joints for a fiver from Ebay. It is merely a case of cutting threaded bar, finding the right nuts and bolts in my nuts and bolts drawer and making it all work.

The re-manufactured linkage is fitted and adjusted the next day at Her Ladyship's abode. She seems happy with the results. Phew!

A collection of images from the re-made gear linkage on Sharons Keeway RKS 125
That should see her right for a while now.

So what's next?

It's still dry and still warm. However I believe in the mantra "if it ain't broke don't fix it." I've done the preventative work I wanted to do. I've done the re-manufacturing work I needed to do. Both bikes are serviced up to date. Apart from a little cleaning it's best I leave them alone.

Oh! You remember the cheap nasty heat proof paint I put on the CBF125 exhaust? It seems 10 years of sitting in a (usually) cold damp shed has improved it. After a damn good thrashing this weekend the paint is still in place. Go figure.

Do you sell motorcycle spares? You can advertise on Bikes And Travels. Contact ren@bikesandtravels.com

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Reader's Comments

Snod said :-
How long do the rose joints last without a rubber boot over them? Is it really worth doing?
28/06/2018 21:48:27 UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
I see your point Snod - but. The CBF125 has had the same rose joints fitted this time last year (see link below). I estimate I'll have covered around 10,000 miles with the rose joints in all weathers all year round. They have indeed started to wear and there is a fair amount of slack in them now.

But at £2.51 per rose joint they're not costly. I can replace them in about 15 minutes so I'll view them as a service item. Sharon is much happier with her gearshift now on her Keeway.

I expect rubber boots help but they did not stop the Keeway's joints from wearing and my CB500X now has 23,500 miles on the clock and the booted joints on that are looking worse for wear. The exposed rose joints are far from ideal or perfect but they're cheap and easy to replace.
bikesandtravels.com/biker.aspx?ride=1049 ...
29/06/2018 07:58:27 UTC
Snod said :-
That's fair enough, better than I was expecting! I nearly did this to my CBX250RS but decided to fit a solid, no-linkage tyre lever instead - the shortest one I could find was from a WR125. This makes for a little stretch to the gear lever (boot just in front of the peg) but at least it won't wear.

But it could be better..
29/06/2018 19:21:13 UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
In an ideal world there'd be no linkages at all Snod. But. While the suspension linkage is a massive waste of time unless you happen to be Rossi or Marquez I do have some sympathy with gear linkage. If an engine can be better packaged and the only set back is the selector shaft is in the wrong place then it's a small price to pay for better engine design.

It's not a perfect world.
29/06/2018 20:02:29 UTC

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