Friday, December 31, 2010

Disassembly Tip (update)


When disassembling your bike print out an extra parts catalog with diagrams. You may need multiple copies of some pages. Use a ziplock to hold your parts and with highlighter mark the parts you have in the bag. Then put the diagram in the bag. Use zip ties to hold the "order" of the parts in place. Leave the zip tie loose enough so you can clean the parts.

Now inspect your parts and use a different color maker to label "replace" for parts that need replacing.

This will make reassembly easier.

Special thanks to Hiro who gave me a similar idea (and Hiro credited it to Tom G.).

Flywheel Removal

Paul S.'s advice worked like a charm:

"If you have an impact wrench, you can just hold the flywheel with your hand while you hit the nut with the impact power. If you don't have an impact wrench, you need to have some sort of flywheel holder. If nothing else, wedge a screwdriver in between the flywheel fins and the case. Make sure it is snug (i.e. no play), and then use your ratchet on the nut.

It pulls on the circlip which is in a notch in the flywheel. Make extra sure that the circlip is set perfectly in the flywheel before you start. Also, I like to hit the nut with the impact just a touch to loosen it up. Then, loosen the nut with your ratchet by hand until it snugs up against the circlip. Then finally give it another blast with the impact. I do this because it is easy to blast away with the impact and blow out the circip. The Vespa system is pretty hokey, and if the circlip isn't perfect, it pops right out of the flywheel. When it pops out, it can damage the notch in the flywheel that it rides in. If that gets worn out, and won't hold the circlip, it is a real beyotch to get the flywheel off. "

I wrenched by hand the the nut against the circlip between taps with my copper hammer.

Bearing update -- danger gray market

Since working on the TV175 I have learned a lot about bearings, because I am rebuilding the engine. This info is very important for all scooter owners.

Read about gray market bearings and what to avoid here.

Vapor Blasting

I have priced out soda blasting, walnut shell blasting, and the works and for my Lambretta I decided on vapor blasting. I won't go into a long explanation, but I will keep it simple. Vapor blasting is equal in price, is best on your metals, and looks better than anything else in my opinion.

Check out Peter at Mods & Rockers and you won't be sorry.

I will post pictures of my Lammy when Peter's done on the sister blog. I am having my cases, carb, etc. done.

Resource DVD

Folks I have used the following DVD to help me rebuild my Lambretta TV175 S3 engine and it was worth every cent. I felt like it was the second engine I was working on even though it was my first. I played the movie on my Mac because it is formatted for Europe. I highly recommend picking up the Vespa DVDs (especially the engine one) if you are a newbie/novice to wrenching on bikes.

Click on Scooter Techniques. It's totally worth it.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Preparing to remove the cush drive

I popped the clutch back in the bike yesterday and went for a ride just to test the grinding sound one last time. It was there. What a shame to split the cases on a bike that has less than 18 miles on a full engine rebuild. Feels like a sin. Or maybe the sin is the cush drive was not rebuilt prior to assembling the motor.

I wrote my mentor Tom G. about splitting the cases and asked what short cuts I could take safely and his response was:

"You can do this work with the engine in the bike. Technically, you don't even have to remove the stator entirely either (you do have to unbolt it, so you can get at the engine nuts behind it though -- you just don't have to disconnect the wires from the junction block, or pull them through the housing. Be sure to mark the position of the stator plate so you don't have to re-time the engine (and don't move the points either.

So -- pull the shrouds first. Then the flywheel. Then remove the exhaust, head and at least the two cylinder studs that screw into the flywheel side case half. Technically, you can then just slide the cylinder up a bit, and not remove it entirely, and not remove the piston either. Remove the gearshift box. Then you can remove the case nuts and bolts (remove the stator and use some wire to tie it up out of your way. The flywheel side case half should then slide right off. Be careful not to damage the cylinder base gasket. Replace the case gasket just in case. You will also have to remove the rear wheel, and hub, and when the case is open, drive out the rear axle and the gears. Only then can you remove the cush gear.

Good luck! - Tom

As you can see I have my work cut out for me.

Clean bill of health for the clutch

A while back Chris B. inspected the clutch. He:
1) first looked for any heavy wear -- there was none
2) then he inspected the clutch basket for shape and wear at the points the plates lock -- there was none
3) he plates the steel plates on a piece of glass to make sure there was no warping -- there was none
4) he stood all the springs up side by side to look at height equality and wear -- all was good
5) the cork plates are brand new

Overall the clutch looks in great condition and Chris B. believes the sound must be coming from the cush drive. So that is the next step.