“99” Problems and Fixes To Them

Article And Photos By: Daniel Donley – www.pandemoniumcustomchoppers.com

Originally Published In The August September 2020 Issue Of Cycle Source Magazine


Over the previous months I have been reaching out to you readers and industry professionals seeking a problem or situation and its fix. So, here are some of the problems, from being broke down on the side of the road. To some situations in the shop like, Fabrication, painting, electrical, troubleshooting etc… Here is a good mix of some of the “99” Problems!

Microfiber towels can become expensive when you use a lot of them. I am always concerned about saving a buck or two wherever I can. So, when cleaning and polishing, for example aluminum surfaces. Instead of going through a bunch of expensive microfibers use something you will always have plenty of… Worn out socks. Yes Socks! When you turn them inside out the fuzzy side works great for polishing aluminum and you just toss them when done.

When working on anything vintage and dealing with gaskets a lot of times the ones you can purchase the fitment of them is terrible. Or if you decide to make your own, a paper punch and a pair of scissors goes a long way. Paper punch works great for making the holes in the gaskets or a rounded edge

When doing wiring or electrical work on your ride. Here I a little tip that I use often. When installing an eyelet on the end of a wire I not only lightly crimp and solder that connection. I like to tin the eyelet with a little solder also. So, when you tighten this into place with a machine screw or a nut. It will slightly squish the tinned eyelet and make it more secure in place.

To help keep organized so when your trying to find the tool warranty paperwork from 2 years ago. Keep file folders on any new tools with receipts and warranty paperwork in the shop. Keep them with your manuals so you always know where they are.

Some of these old bikes that we ride can vibrate like crazy when your out whipping on them. They like to tear up little things like ignitions, destroy fuse panels. Wiring comes lose. One thing I have found out here. I like to use silicone on small machine screws and fasteners as a thread locker. It also works well to retain the fuses in your fuse panel. (I know it does not look pretty but it works!)

I recently acquired an old friend’s toolbox. As I was going through it, I stumbled across a drawer full of files. A few of them had Golf Ball Handles on them. It is as simple as drilling a small hole into a golf ball and smashing it onto the end of a file. It is very comfortable to use!

Most of us do not have large shops with all kinds of room. Most of us are constantly struggling for storage solutions in our small spaces. Hell, I know people that have closets bigger than my shop! Here is an idea for you, not nothing new or recording breaking but it works great. You know those hooks you can buy at the hardware store that you can hang bicycles from your ceiling. They work great for hanging, gas tanks, frames, fenders up out of your way and it looks pretty cool too!

We all at one time or another have installed wheel bearings. One thing I have done for years but recently crossed my mind again. I like to put my wheel bearings in the freezer overnight prior to installing them. By freezing it makes the bearing smaller and makes installation much easier. Once it thaws out it is locked in place just as it should be.

Last but not least… An old timer once told me, Carpet and Curtains will get you Chrome! Well there you have it this is the wrap up of 99 problems. I hope you enjoyed them and maybe even learned a thing or two… Thank you to all that have submitted your ideas. If there is something that you would like to see a Tech article on? Please call me or email me with your idea! If you have any questions, please feel free to call me at the shop anytime 419-576-6812 Daniel Donley

Pandemonium Custom Choppers

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Editor’s Note: I would be remissed to not add to this article with some thoughts from inside out little organization. “99 Problems” began as a tech series to celebrate Daniel’s 100 milestone with the magazine and I have to say I’m a little sad to see it come to an end. Not only because it puts that milestone for Daniel in the books but for the readers it marks the end of one of the best series we have run. Daniel, bless his soul, is one of the kindest and most honest human beings on the planet and his talent for motorcycle repair and maintenance is the only thing that matches those attributes.

I can still remember the day that I asked him to write tech for the magazine and how intimidated he was  at the idea he would need to present his offering in front of everyone each month. He came through with extra to spare each time and every month his tech article, usually titled “Do It Your Damn Self” became a mantra for garage and shade tree mechanics across the land. I am proud of Daniel for not only this series but all of his work from the day he started with the magazine and wanted to take a minute to share that with you, his readers and fans. We get so busy here in the pursuit of bringing you the information we are collecting, the opportunities to collect it with each other becomes less as the years go by. I can imagine the months that pass when Daniel and I do little more than an email here and there for his article, he may feel like we aren’t even aware of his work and he may even wonder if anyone is watching what he has done these many years in service to CS Mag. A resounding yes to you my brother, we have watched and hung on every word. Here’s to 100 more articles with your name at the top of them. Thank you for your friendship and what you bring to our monthly offering. CC

2 thoughts on ““99” Problems and Fixes To Them

  1. My thanks to Mr. Donley (a fine Irish name) and Cycle Source for providing us with so much information and insight. This is what makes the Industry so special and rewarding.

  2. Have always enjoyed reading your articles. Thank you for the multiple tips along the way.

    Pete Hesselschwardt

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