“99” Problems And Fixes To Them
Article And Photos By: Daniel Donley
Over the last several months, I have been reaching out to readers and industry professionals seeking problems or situations and their fixes. The issues range from being broken down on the side of the road to some things in the shop, including fabrication, painting, electrical, troubleshooting, etc.
Master links for your chain are the way to go, in my opinion, but pressing on the outer plate can sometimes can be difficult. I like to use a small nut and a pair of large channel locks to press the plate on evenly. This makes the task much more user-friendly.
Sometimes removing hand grips can be a real bear, especially when they have been glued on whether it be a motorcycle or a bicycle. I have found that using an air gun to get underneath and in between the bar and grip will kind of swell it up a bit and allow you to pull on and remove it with the help of air pressure. This works for installation as well as removal.
I was at my friend’s shop helping out for a couple of days and saw a cool idea fr mounting a taillight on top of your rear fender, which is a great place for it. But there is always the problem of how to run the wiring to it and keep it clean and simple. His solution is to take a piece of auto brake line tubing and run it along the underside of the fender to keep it off the tire. It is then as simple as running the wire through it. Simple, clean, and effective.
When building a new bike or doing a restoration, usually everything gets powder coated and painted looking all beautiful, before final assembly starts. Here is where the mistake happens. You must remove the powder coat and or paint from the frame at all major mounting points. This not only provides a good ground from the frame to the engine but also eliminates paint squish. Paint squish is a bad thing when you go to tighten that fastener between that major mounting point. This will squish out, and at some point, the fastener is no longer tight. I do not know about you, but last time I checked, we need good grounds and tight bolts on our two-wheeled machines.
This has happened to me, and probably you too, you’re working in the shop, cut your finger and your bleeding everywhere, or a piece of grinding dust flies in your eye. It is a good idea to have a basic first aid kit in your shop. The contents will vary per your job and environment. If nothing else, I recommend having peroxide, eyewash, and Band-Aids anywhere you work.
So, you just completed assembly on your fresh build, how many nuts and bolts did you use? Quite a few, I bet. As life happens, we forget things. I am not saying you forgot to bolt everything together, but what I am asking is, are they all tight? You went for your first test ride and come back, and all is well. You proceed to ride the shit out of it, and you’re having a blast when your buddy stops over and is checking out your new ride when he says, “Hey man, did you forget to put in your top motor mount bolt?” You know the rest of the story here. It is always a good idea to do a 100% bolt check on any new build. For that matter, it is something you should do on your current ride. Missing or loose bolts can cause havoc. Be safe; check your bolts.
This one is from the Chopper Building Basics Book. There is one key tools for your shop that many people overlook. What is this, you might ask? A good chair or stool is necessary in every shop. Everybody needs a break or a time to sort through troublesome things, and a good chair or stool will help make that possible.
I call this a Paint Saver. I use a stepped bung in the rear axle adjusting area. I like to back cut the nut or axle itself slightly. This reduces the amount of scraping or scratching when adjusting your rear axle as it is a major mounting point that has always been difficult to keep nice.
Most of our old bikes have final drive chains, and maintenance is needed for them to be healthy and happy. Lubing them on a regular basis is good practice. You should also make sure your master link clip is in place. But hunting for that master link clip can be like finding a needle in a haystack, so I like to mark it with a paint marker, so it can be found quickly.
Calling all readers and industry professionals, please submit problems WITH fixes and PICS to the email below.)
If you have questions or a suggestion for a tech article, please call me at the shop 419-576-6812 or email me with your idea!
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