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-   -   Workshop tips tricks and handy hints (http://www.100-biker.com/forums/showthread.php?t=51183)

wiskers 05-02-2016 12:44 PM

Workshop tips tricks and handy hints
OK i'll admit it i'm a bit bored but i noticed we could do with a thread like this

Let me start, handy hint's

1. Cover the bike your working on. ( i use moving blanket's)

2. Have a washing up bowl near the bike put all tools used for the job in the bowl not on the garage floor, this way you know where every tool you need to finish the job is. (great tip this one no more hunting for the lost spanner)

3. Do one job at a time. (no more time spent trying to figure out where that bolt fits, your working on the clutch that bolt's from the starter)

4. look on youtube someone on there may have filmed the job your about to do

5. Most job's get easier if you sit back and think about them before starting.

There you go a few to start you off,

Hope this help's Dai

strima 05-02-2016 06:08 PM

When frustrated remove all heavy tools from easy reach, fuel tanks don't respond well to hammers!!!

Friar Tuck 06-02-2016 06:59 AM

Stickied for you Wiskers!

wiskers 06-02-2016 08:49 AM

Torx 27

Originally Posted by Friar Tuck (Post 658681)
Stickied for you Wiskers!

Thank you very much sir

I don't want to make this a wiskers thread let's have some input from you guy's

When working on bike's with torx fittings make sure you have a torx 27 this is the size used the most on bikes it's also the size not included with most torx sets, sure most of the time you will get away with a torx 25 but the fits not perfect and that ladies and gentlemen is why the screws or the torx bit get mangled

beef 06-02-2016 08:56 AM

have a kettle with required brewing tackle and music in there.
if things start to go tits up brew up and take two songs to chill... works foe me.

oh and check with school care takers for filing cabinets, old cuoboards,deaks ect that may be getting binned. no good for them. but good enough for you.

wiskers 06-02-2016 11:03 AM

Engine casing screws
Engine casing screws can often be a problem

This is where having a set of strike through screwdrivers comes in handy

A few little taps with a small hammer ( I'm thinking toffee hammer here) will often free up the corrosion, if not stop don't reach for the big hammer were dealing with fairly fine threads here, try dipping the screwdriver in valve grinding paste then give it a tap into the screw then the screwdriver won't slip and mangle the screw, if all else fails reach for the impact gun, or the drill if you reach for the drill drill a small hole centre to the screw, you can then use either a easy out or my favourite a centre punch that has been shown the grinder you want a flat on both sides of the top and a triangle ground on the other end,use this by hammering into the screws and then turn with a open ended spanner
When you have all the screws lose take a bit of cardboard and push the screws through in order ( usually i mark the screw at the furthest forward point of the motor and work round clockways) this way you don't risk putting a long screw into a shallow hole and breaking a lump of engine casing off ( i did have a piece of wood drilled for this very job but once I knocked it off the bench and mixed up the screws it went on the fire ) in over 40years of working on engines I still have found nothing better than cardboard for the job

wiskers 06-02-2016 02:16 PM

Engine casing screws part two putting them in
Now this seems really easy

Let's try to make it difficult

Did I just say that? ok i did let's look at some ways to put them back in

You have the screws in the correct order thanks to your bit of cardboard

Now are you replacing the original screws or fitting a new set, it makes no difference if they are pozi Allen or bolt head type

Sort the new screws into the correct order using your bit of cardboard with the old screws in it (obviously miss that bit if reusing the old one's )

You could just put them back in but they will corrode up again making the job of removal a bitch next time

The reason they corrode is the reaction of the steel screw and the aluminium engine casing

So we need something to coat the threads to stop this corrosion

Do we use lock tite or similar thread locking product NO that will make the job a bitch next time ( if you come across casing screws that have been loc tited try heating the screw with a soldering gun put it right on the screw head give ie about half a minute this will sometimes melt the loc tite enough for you to get the screw out)

Do we use coppa grease it's not my favourite for this job but it works well enough most of the time

Myself i use Holts blue grease it's made for outboard motor's (other blue greases are available )

OK how do we use the grease? Bloody good question

Don't be tempted to put a big blob into the holes where the screws are going however tempting it may be, if any grease gets behind the screw it can cause hydraulic pressure to build up which can then damage the engine casings possibly breaking a lump of this would leave you with a lump of metal floating around the engine and could also lead to an oil leak (i would sooner have an oil leak anyday )

Don't be tempted to dip the screws into your pot of grease either exactly the same as above big blobs of grease don't do any good

The way I do it is clean the screws as best I can with a brass brush (think the one's i use are for cleaning suade shoes) then put a tiny smear on the thread I do put enough on so some get's pushed back up the threads and ends up under the head of the screw

If I have a manual I will put all the screws into the casing just nipped up then tighten in the order in the book

If I don't have a manual I will nip them up then tighten diagonally

You know i never realised that casing screws could lead to two long post's

Just found out my blue grease is not Suzuki it's Holts sorry for any confusion

Hope this helps Dai

wiskers 07-02-2016 11:10 PM

If your not feeling well do it another day
Didn't think of this one till today

Obviously I'm still suffering from the anesthetic on Thursday

Not feeling great and bit pissed off I went up to the garage this morning

Started lifting the bike to do the work on the forks (new seals gaiters etc) forgot to chock the back of the bike

You guessed it the bike rolled back off the lift and went over Luckily not too much damage but could have been a whole lot worse

Never done that before hopefully it will be the only time

Don't work on anything when not well!

Friar Tuck 08-02-2016 06:13 AM

And make sure you have a decent first aid box/tin. you are bound to need it sooner or later!

Friar Tuck 08-02-2016 06:13 AM

A decent fire extinguisher as well!

Biker Buster 08-02-2016 11:00 AM

Never start a job without one of these...


wiskers 08-02-2016 11:44 AM

Use barrier cream
I never used to use it i don't think many people of my age did, I have brown lumps all over the back of my hands and lower arm's

Not sure if this is down to not using a barrier cream but if I use it now the lumps fade

My father in his later year's suffered with skin cancer on his face and spent many hour's having Lazer surgery to try and cure it

Don't take the chance use the stuff it's not girlie it's sensible


Also don't just use it on your hands use it everywhere your liable to touch with oily hands (yup even there)

harry 08-02-2016 12:40 PM


Originally Posted by Biker Buster (Post 658703)
Never start a job without one of these...


Sorry it has to be a beer crate for me, tradition you know old chap.

I agree with Whiskers. I grease cevery nut and bolt on my bikes. But I use whatever I think is appropriate.

So its molybdenum grease on wheel spindles (Never in the bearings as it is NOT a lubricant) it is designed to prevent damage to metal surfaces under high pressure but not for things that move fast. Its great for splines on drive shafts and cush drives etc where there is little movement between the surfaces but high pressures between thos surfaces.

Copper grease for ordinary nuts and bolts where they are exposed to road dirt
so fairing screws etc.

multi purpose grease for engine casing bolts and as Whiskers says just a smear on the threads too much can do damage.

Rubber grease can be hard to find but is brilliant for hydraulics as it wont harm seals. But pads and pins are copper grease and again not too much.

You may find all this a bind when you want to get it all together quickly but it is worth it next time you have to pull things apart. Especially in emergencies.

harry 08-02-2016 12:46 PM

I was an AA patrol for many years and found many doges and bodges that work well.

If you have to take something apart with a fitted gasket you may be able in an emergency to reuse the gasket. Take ti apart carefully but if it tears then leave it alone do not attempt to clean it off. When you put it together again it may well seal good enough to get you home.

Electric wires tend to break close to their terminals, bare back the wire just enough but do not twist the strands together. Then remove the terminal push the bared end of the cable into the female connector and jam it back on the male part and again it should get you home.

wiskers 08-02-2016 01:38 PM

Harley calliper bolt's
Caught me out this one

Don't rush out and but a set of female torx sockets they won't fit

What you need is in your toolbox, you need a 11mm twelve point socket or ring spanner for them

wiskers 08-02-2016 01:53 PM

Make sure the Mrs is out for this one
The dishwasher will do a surprisingly good job on stainless exhaust cans or any other stainless items
(but be careful with other metals) put them on a hot wash with normal dishwasher tablets or powder

For smaller things like nuts and bolts put them between two metal sieves tied securely

but like I said in the heading make sure your Mrs is out for a few hours before doing this, after using the dishwasher for your parts do another wash with the machine empty and then make sure you put the settings back to where they were before you started

Obviously I don't do this and have absolutely no idea why the dishwasher sometimes smells of oil

wiskers 08-02-2016 05:43 PM

Keeping other half sweet
When ever you are with the other half in one of the budget bargain type stores

Always take her down the tool section point out the spanner set they're selling for a quid and say look at that i paid 1-50 for mine

Your other half won't be able to tell the difference between that set and your snap on set

Don't forget to pick up some microfiber t towels and cloths while you're there

Would I do a thing like that? I just hope that when I'm dead and gone my Ann doesn't sell my tools for what she thinks they cost

SS2 08-02-2016 10:13 PM

Good tip for getting chain lube/oil spray off your back wheel. Use plain old Pledge or similar furniture polish. Lifts it right off. :cool: Use the same rag to clean the oily finger prints off before you put it back under the sink :)

harry 09-02-2016 07:09 AM

Accepted best practice for sump plugs is a new copper washer every time.

But I don't. I use PTFE tape on the threads this gives a good seal. Also it acts like a nyloc as it prevents the plug coming loose.

My experience doing breakdowns causes me to believe loosing a sump plug to be a bad thing and not just because of the mess.

wiskers 09-02-2016 08:15 AM


Originally Posted by harry (Post 658716)
Accepted best practice for sump plugs is a new copper washer every time.

But I don't. I use PTFE tape on the threads this gives a good seal. Also it acts like a nyloc as it prevents the plug coming loose.

My experience doing breakdowns causes me to believe loosing a sump plug to be a bad thing and not just because of the mess.

Just bought 10 rolls on amazon prime 2.53 with free next day delivery
Arriving today

Biker Buster 09-02-2016 10:09 AM


Originally Posted by wiskers (Post 658717)
Just bought 10 rolls on amazon prime 2.53 with free next day delivery
Arriving today

'Ow many sump plugs you got?!?!? :eek:

wiskers 09-02-2016 10:36 AM

PTFE. Tape

Originally Posted by Biker Buster (Post 658719)
'Ow many sump plugs you got?!?!? :eek:

It can be used for many thing's and is always handy to have around

Today's job for it is in the kitchen the cupboard doors need adjusting every few days bloody builder over tightened the screws into the casings so wrapping some PTFE tape round the screws will cure the problem of having droopy doors

Not much of a workshop tip that one but if you're having problems with droopy cabinet doors anywhere it may help

wiskers 09-02-2016 11:38 AM

What grease where
Both Harry and I have touched on this and I am hoping he will add to this

If you have read the thread this far you will know that we both use different grease's for different jobs, so here goes I will try to explain what i use where

1 Multi purpose lithium grease. Can be used almost anywhere but there are better products for different jobs.

2, blue grease. This I use for most job's, bearings, casing screws, gaskets, when assembling anything that works on a pivot (brake and clutch levers back brake pedal swinging arms etc you get the idea) and also on battery terminals and electrical connectors.

The reason i use this is it's recommended for boat trailer wheel bearings, so it's very salt resistant (think about launching a boat from a trailer it's often reversed into the sea and the boat get's floated off, also a boat is often stored up over winter sat on the trailer then towed down the motorway before the boat get's launched) trailers very seldom get the servicing they should

3. Red grease. This is made to lubricate rubber so i use it for anything that has rubber, brake cylinders, brake pistons, some head gaskets, o rings, etc also I use this on brake banjo bolt's.

4. Copper grease. This I use for thing's like wheel spindles, brake pad pins, for years i used it on the back of brake pads,

5. Chain lube. You guessed it i use this for lubing chains, but also stand pivots, gear linkages, brake and clutch levers and back brake pivot, and drum brake cams, (all this when lubing the chain)

6. Teflon grease. Originally I got this for servicing fishing reel's (one of my sidelines) but have found it great for using on the back of brake pads and pad pins.

7. Silicon spray. Yup the stuff you spray on black engines to make them look pretty. I use this for switches it's the only thing that I have found that works on harley front brake light switches for more than a day or two,

If I have missed anything or got something wrong i'm hoping Harry will correct

When did things get so complicated I remember my dad he had a big tub of grease if anything needed greasing the grease came out of that tub, any rubber got lubricated with soap

Hope this doesn't come over like a lecture

Cheers Dai

wiskers 09-02-2016 12:53 PM

New harley left fork seal leaking
This one catches loads of people out

First hot day of the summer your out on the bike, you park it up for a couple of hours leaving it in the full sun, when you get home you notice the left fork seal leaking.

Often the seal isn't leaking harley seem to over lube the headstock bearings when the bike is left in the full sun some of this grease melts and drips on to the left stanction, if your bike does this keep on wiping down around the headstock and yokes until it stops it usually only does it a couple of times
If it doesn't stop take it back under warranty (you will be without the bike for a few days so it's worth checking the headstock)
What grease they use in the factory I have no idea (it looks and feels like a lithium but i'm not sure)

spyderider 09-02-2016 08:57 PM

Baby Wipes, the sort you buy for wiping their bums, is very good for wiping off all sorts of nasties including flies and tar spots, excellent as well for removing the brake dust from wheels and as a bonus you end up with clean hands.

Biker Buster 10-02-2016 10:57 AM


These clean just about anything off anything, they even clean your hob without scrubbing! AnD they don't leave any residue, they even clean brake fluid without fuss.

wiskers 11-02-2016 11:18 AM

Instant gasket life saver or engine killer?
What I'm talking about here is the stuff you buy of the shelf in most motor factors

For some jobs you can use this it's pretty good for differential covers, pre unit gearboxes, and also for fixing bolt covers in place, to be honest i can't think of anywhere else to use it
Edit yes I can it works for filling wiring holes in the back mudguard keeping crap and water out of your electrics under the seat

If you use it on engine casing's remember the same amount squeezes (spelin ) out on the inside as the outside and over time this can come adrift then find it's way into your oil ways causing all sorts of problems

The stuff I use is made by wurth it's oil soluble and silver in colour I have used this for years and never had any problems it's the best thing I have found for Japanese crank case joints

When running my old BSA'S i found hematite gold this seemed to work ok but i didn't like the way it didn't set

The oil soluble stuff is also sold by Suzuki and Yamaha dealers they may have to order it for you but they should be able to get it probably other manufacturers sell it too

Hope this helps Dai

Friar Tuck 12-02-2016 05:44 AM

Tesco All purpose kitchen cleaner is a good replacement for Gunk!

wiskers 12-02-2016 10:07 PM

Get a decent torch or head torch
Makes life much easier

I bought two snap on, one's for under 20 and use them most times i'm in the garage

wiskers 19-02-2016 11:00 AM

When you remove the callipers for any reason don't let them hang on the hydraulic line's

I stretch a bungy cord then place this between the pads and hang the callipers from the bungy

Doing it this way keeps the pads pushed back for easy refitting over the disc's

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