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Old 05-09-2009, 09:27 AM   #151
Schmeds
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Location: the Deep East
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Wwmcgd?

The first weekend into a trip through New England, the pilot screw on one of my carbs vibrated its way loose and out. For a day or so, I had to reach down and cover the hole with a finger when I came to a stop, and try to regulate the idle circuit in the carb that way.

I ordered the screws from an internet cafe, but in the meantime...



...I fashioned this out of the tip of a mechanical pencil. The flow was adjustable by pushing in more or less of the stripped wire jammed through the middle, which was swiped from a leftover Christmas wreath at the conference center. (The cutie at the desk said she didn't mind.) She also gave me a few paperclips to hold it in:




It worked like a champ, for the next couple thousand miles. The screws had arrived, but I just had to know how long the fix would last...

Even better were the events of the very first day, as we were making our way through the Adirondacks. The ferrule on the lever end of my buddie's clutch cable popped off. Try as I might to finagle something, I rode ahead, defeated, and stopped at a farmhouse to use their yellow pages. The farmer crosses his yard, where I see he was working on his barbed wire fence. We chat. He reaches into his pocket, shows me a handful of fat fence-joining crimp connectors, and holds up the giant crimpers. Serendipity at its most beautiful. Somewhere, that clutch cable is still sporting that fence connector, and working better than new...
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Old 05-27-2009, 10:15 AM   #152
Dave in Wi
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Here is another carb-related fix. I haven't been through all the pages of this thread yet so if it's been posted already, I apologize. I did think this one up on my own, out of necessity.


Last weekend I was up at the cabin & tried to start my ATV (I know, but this tip is good for motorcycles as well!). It started but ran very rich, would only run with a lot of throttle and soon fouled the plug. Once it quit, I smelled gas. It was coming out the overflow. So I know the float needle was gummed up, dirty or stuck.

I tore into it and once I got to the carb found that the ridges on the float needle (like this one below) were scratched up and sticking. Maybe from vibration, don't know why.


So on a holiday weekend in rural central Wisconsin, there was no way to get a rebuild kit on short notice. What I did was carefully rub out the small scratches and burrs with a whetstone, made sure nothing was wrong with the float needle jet, and put it back together. It worked like a charm, ran great all weekend.

I will be getting a rebuild kit and repairing it properly, but this was a good temporary fix. Might come in handy for someone else someday.
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Old 05-27-2009, 10:38 PM   #153
Dano 407
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I had one today, and it will not be built for a few days:

A lockable tape rack on my paint cart. It seems everybody believes that tape just grows in my shop. When somebody needs tape, it is take, take, take tape. Screw that noise. Enter the lockable tape rack.

It is four pieces, counting the lock. Two 3" square tabs with outer corners rounded and a hole in each to accept the 1/2" rod; one end bent at a 90 and the other will accept the standard lock. Simply weld the tabs to the vertical legs of the cart and insert the rod with the tape rolls upon it. Apply the lock and watch the fumbling begin.


Not necessary in your personal space, but needed if you are in a common shop.
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Old 05-28-2009, 12:54 AM   #154
cynicwanderer
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I love all the stories. this first one is not a motorcycle story. got a passat with a "low oil pressure" light on that I needed to drive back home across the US. so, I added a cheap mechanical oil pressure gauge and routed the nylon tube through the back of the hood, through the door frame and placed the gauge on the dash. oil pressure wasn't really all that low, a little low, just lower than what the factory oil pressure switch was calibrated for. I figured the farther I got west, the cheaper it will be to tow/haul it the rest of the way.

this worked fine for a while, until the hose from the oil pressure gauge popped out while in the toll booth line, during rush hour in chicago, spewing oil over the dash... I folded over the oil line and held it with my hand to prevent more oil from squirting everywhere, while paying toll and then pulling off to fix it. drove it for another 500 miles until the oil pressure finally went away and I got off the interstate in the middle of nowhere in iowa. I found out the nearest bus stop (trailways had one bus a day and about 40 miles away), got a ride to the bus stop place (also in the middle of nowhere), took the bus to the next big town with an airport, got to the airport, rented a SUV with trailer hitch (one way) and a dolley at a U-haul and went back to get the car.

since, I didn't want to run the engine with no oil pressure I had to use a come-a-long, which I wisely brought along, to get the car on the dolly. except the cable wasn't long enough to anchor on the SUV trail hitch and pull the car up. so, I anchored one side of the winch to the ramp, winched it up a foot or so, put the car in park, re-anchor the winch, release park, winch it a little more, put it in park, re-anchor the winch.... anyway, finally got the car on the dolly and home. it only needed to have the oil intake screen cleaned... put another 38,000 miles and 3 cross country round trips on it since then.

same car; the other day one of the rear brake calipers just came off (not quite in the middle of nowhere, but away from things); the two bolts holding the caliper to the axle were gone. probably, because I forgot to tighten them when I installed the new caliper the week before. I took one of the bolts from the other side and secured the caliper... so both sides only had one bolt holding it on. no worries, it's just the "rear" brake, it doesn't really do much and got me home 50miles.

my bike mcgyver moments usually involve bailing wire found in the field and/or tie wraps holding various things on the bike, when bolts were broken/shared off, etc... I have done the, push the bike, jump on it and smash it into gear(s), when the clutch cable broke, routine.

to deal with stuck open float valves, just ride it until the carb starts overflowing, turn off the gas cock, drive until the engine starts to sputter/backfire, turn on the gas petcock, etc...

then there is the time I almost got stuck at the bottom of a big hill with no way out with my buddy. i.e. we were exploring fire trails and went down this big hill, had lunch and then tried to get back up the big hill with mostly worn out dual sport tires. it took several attempts and we were convinced that we might have to dissasemble the bikes and hike out the pieces and then reasssemble them. luckily, we finally were able to push/power the bikes out. another idea, my buddy suggested, would be to wrap industrial sized tie wraps around the rear tire/rim, much like a snow chain, in order to get more traction. we'll have to bring some the next time.

you can sometimes fix a punctured radiator, by pinching the effected tubes tubes together with some needle nose pliers. of course, the puncture/leak needs to be in the tube/fin area and not the box area. I have limped home that way.

bump starting a bike (car) with fuel injection and really dead battery is tricky. it turns out that the computer needs some juice to figure out how much fuel to meter and tell the coil when to spark. when the battery is dead, push starting it doesn't generate a high enough voltage for the computer to boot up, because the dead battery will load down the electrical system.

unless you can jumpstart with another bike/car, you'll need a really long hill and use a tall gear so that the motor/alternator gets enough RPM and generate enough juice that computer will boot and then run. it's a bit easier, if the battery is disconnected so it doesn't drag the electrical system down. you can connect the battery once you get it running to charge it.

if the computer on a fuel injection bike is dead you can re-wire the injector through some kind of switch (like the kill button) so it can be operated manually. you then pulse the injector in order to inject fuel manually... it takes a little to get the feel for it, i.e. how fast you need to pulse it in order to get enough fuel, but not flood it, but it will get you home. the brother of someone I used to work with has done this.

use condems to carry/get water from stream/puddles for radiators. most any fluids will work in a radiator, besides beer/urine, as has been suggested, you can also use oil, or soft drinks...

of course, always carry tie-wraps, bailing wire, duct/electrical tape, non lubricated condems. having rope/strap, and a multitool (I like gerber), helps too, besides tubes/air pump, basic tools, fuel line.

but most of all, stay calm, step back assess your situation, etc...

cynicwanderer screwed with this post 05-28-2009 at 01:07 AM
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Old 06-02-2009, 12:47 PM   #155
K80JIM
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One not to do.

So there are some great ideas here. But here is one NOT to do. Now Please remember we were only 16 and city boys. So there are four of us and my buddy takes his moms new 69 Chev Nova to Big Bear for a overnight snow trip. We get up in the morning and windshield is frozen, we try to scrap it with a knife we found in our rented motel room. One of the guys said I have got the fix. He goes in the kitchen turns on the hot water and fills a pan. He comes out and throws it on the windshield to melt the ice. I am guessing you know what happens. CCCCRRRRACCCCKKK...... Oh shit.

So parents warn your kids if they take your car to the snow. You city people that is.
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Old 06-03-2009, 12:49 PM   #156
Jonex
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If you're doing an engine swap at the salvage yard so you can be sure to get the parts you need, and it's closing time and all you have to do yet is hook up the throttle cable...

just throw the hood in the back seat (convertible) and have your buddy drive while you sit on the fender and work the throttle.

When the cop stops you, promise to walk home and wait until he's good and gone before seeing how fast she goes with the new V-8 in there. Be sure to hang on tight to the windshield and make your buddy promise not to swerve.
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Old 06-07-2009, 04:53 PM   #157
duck
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When you loosen the timing chain on a BMW 4 valve K bike to do valves you supposedly need a $70 BMW special tool to keep the cam chain tensioner depressed.

I shove a bit driver in the hole and apply some leverage with a string tied to the fork trees.

I practiced first on a parts engine I had to make sure it would work before tring it on one of my real bikes:

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Old 06-08-2009, 08:00 AM   #158
Jamming
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Quote:
Originally Posted by duck
When you loosen the timing chain on a BMW 4 valve K bike to do valves you supposedly need a $70 BMW special tool to keep the cam chain tensioner depressed.

I shove a bit driver in the hole and apply some leverage with a string tied to the fork trees.

I practiced first on a parts engine I had to make sure it would work before tring it on one of my real bikes:

DOH!!! I'm such a dumbass! I did the same thing but I have a 2X2 the perfect length to wedge under the steel round stock.
Why didn't I think of the string? Spent half a day getting the 2X2 the right length.
Great tip!!!!
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Old 06-09-2009, 06:15 AM   #159
bomber60015
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sonex522
If you're doing an engine swap at the salvage yard so you can be sure to get the parts you need, and it's closing time and all you have to do yet is hook up the throttle cable...

just throw the hood in the back seat (convertible) and have your buddy drive while you sit on the fender and work the throttle.

When the cop stops you, promise to walk home and wait until he's good and gone before seeing how fast she goes with the new V-8 in there. Be sure to hang on tight to the windshield and make your buddy promise not to swerve.
UI can easily see the movie of this in my mind's eye -- perhaps it's a midwestern thing? ;-}
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Old 06-10-2009, 01:05 PM   #160
BluePill
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Riding in difficult, rocky terrain, my buddy's 1970 Suzuki 250 conks out. Fuel is ok, but no spark from coil. Old-style magneto ignition with points and condensor behind crankshaft mounted flywheel. Looking through small slot in flywheel, I can see that the spring metal band that acts as a return spring to close the points is broken, the points just flapping around. With no spare points or flywheel puller, and at least 5 miles from a road, we weigh our options. Too rocky to tow out with a bike or 4X4. Finally figure that we will have to find a hiding place for the bike, come back the next day with parts & tools - three hours round trip from home. Just before dragging the bike off the trail, I decide to look in the tool kit under my seat for any possible tool or part to Macgyver a fix. I notice my seat cusion foam, and the lightbulb goes on. Take a small piece of the foam and jam it between the arm of the points and the condensor - voila, enough "spring" tension to make the points close ok up to about 2200 RPM - just enough to get back to the road under power.
I just love it when a plan comes together.
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Old 06-11-2009, 09:27 AM   #161
Haasenpfeffer
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Trick for locking your keys in the car

If you find yourself in the akward place of your keys being inside your car and you on the outside while the doors are locked.

If you have an extra car remote at home (and someone there to call). Give them a call with your cell phone and have them press the remote into the receiver while you hold the phone towards the car. The signal will unlock the car door.

Trust me, it works. I have helped many people out of a jam this way.
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Old 06-11-2009, 01:19 PM   #162
mittenduck
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shimming brushes & faking rubber mounts

In Monticello Utah (I think it was) about 20 years ago my early 80's R100RT gave up the ghost after running increasingly badly. It turns out the brushes in the alternator were so worn that they barely made contact with the armature (I think it might be called the armature) My buddy and I shimmed them up with a wooden match stick so that the spring could force enough contact to make decent electrical contact. Also all but one of the rubber mounts that hold the diode board had sheared and it was shorting out against the case. We suspended the diode board on wire ties which we held in place by squishing them between the case and the cover. The bike made it all the way back to San Francisco like this.
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Old 06-12-2009, 11:47 AM   #163
ibafran
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Haasenpfeffer
If you find yourself in the akward place of your keys being inside your car and you on the outside while the doors are locked.

If you have an extra car remote at home (and someone there to call). Give them a call with your cell phone and have them press the remote into the receiver while you hold the phone towards the car. The signal will unlock the car door.

Trust me, it works. I have helped many people out of a jam this way.
I have never been able to make this work in a test. Nor have any of my budds been able to make it work in a common test at biker breakfast. My inclination is to call a HUGE BS on this. However, if anyone else can supprt this and post a repeatable (by me) description of how to make this work, I will post my apologies. One of the cages that we tried this on had the remote 400 yards in clear line of sight from the cage before it quit opening the locks. At that point, the cell phones were of no help in getting the doors unlocked. The remote uses a radio signal to activate the locks. This radio signal is not picked up/transmited by cell phone tech. My experiments were conducted apprx 2 winters ago when some bikers were bringing their cages to breakfast. I want the year, make and model of the cage that this works on. Rumor has it that an Onstar equiped cage can get it opened by calling Onstar and going thru a security tree.
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Old 06-13-2009, 09:18 PM   #164
nitsuj
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ibafran
I have never been able to make this work in a test. Nor have any of my budds been able to make it work in a common test at biker breakfast.
Not calling anyone a liar, but.... I'm pretty sure they tackled this on on mythbusters. Didn't work for them. When I heard about it I had to try it. I can say 100% for sure it doesn't work with a 2007 F150, 2008 Dodge Caliber, a 2005 Chrysler 300 or Chrysler Pacifica or a Mazda 6 I don't know the year of. When conducting my test, I worked at a dealer that sells Harley and Honda. I can also promise it doesnt work for the Key fob to disable the Harley security system. Nor will the one to pop the trunk on a Goldwing work.

Not sceintific testing I know, but it's what I had available. Oh BTW, also won't work for opening any garage door I've tried.
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Old 06-14-2009, 09:48 PM   #165
Haasenpfeffer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ibafran
I have never been able to make this work in a test. Nor have any of my budds been able to make it work in a common test at biker breakfast. My inclination is to call a HUGE BS on this. However, if anyone else can supprt this and post a repeatable (by me) description of how to make this work, I will post my apologies. One of the cages that we tried this on had the remote 400 yards in clear line of sight from the cage before it quit opening the locks. At that point, the cell phones were of no help in getting the doors unlocked. The remote uses a radio signal to activate the locks. This radio signal is not picked up/transmited by cell phone tech. My experiments were conducted apprx 2 winters ago when some bikers were bringing their cages to breakfast. I want the year, make and model of the cage that this works on. Rumor has it that an Onstar equiped cage can get it opened by calling Onstar and going thru a security tree.
Maybe I have just lucked out then

It has worked on both of my saturns LW2 2000 and SW1 2000. Also worked for my 2006 Dodge Caravan. Maybe I should start doing a check on each car I get a chance on.
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