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Old 11-22-2013, 09:45 AM   #31
RedArrow OP
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Dear all above. Thanks for your input. It will certainly help anyone doing this for the first few times, including me! Before I could put all your advice to good use, I was out trying to make tire friends.

I stumbled on my own Jethro Clampett rope belt method of trying to get my tire to act more like a tire, but I only managed to get about half of it seated on the bead. A tire spoon served as a handy tourniquet and potentially lethal flying weapon. Kids, don't try this at home.



There comes a point when doing the same thing without success starts gnawing at your soul and that's the perfect time to step back and reassess your options. I reached that point with my tire. There is no shame in this so long as you learn something along the way. I certainly have doing this job.

Time was when every town had at least one little independent family-owned garage or auto parts store where people could hang out, shoot the breeze and try to avoid stepping on a sweet old dog. Such a place is Andy's in downtown Santa Cruz. They may not have as many parts in stock as the nearby chain store, but what they provide in personal service more than makes up for it. So that's where I headed, tire in hand.



Mike was very helpful and actually endorsed my rope cinching effort. Using his compressor, he was able to set the bead in a matter of minutes. I can see now that I didn't quite seat the tire on the rim hard enough and also didn't warm the tire in the sun nearly long enough. Next time I'll know better. Thanks again everyone who helped.

Success! The total charge for labor was the cost of a mere sandwich. Aren't these folks great? And they're not even really a motorcycle shop.





As far as balancing the tire, I tried these "balancing beads" which I'd never heard of before.





I'd like to know if anyone's used these before and if they're worth the money. You just fill the little bottle with a packet of the beads and then squeeze them into the tire (with the valve insert removed). I guess it's supposed to work as the tire rolls down the highway. We'll see...

Gotta go to work now. See you in a few.
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Old 11-22-2013, 12:30 PM   #32
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I tried Dynabeads in my DR650 wheels and ended up with flat spots on the tires. Maybe if they are installed and the adjusted on a balancer?

I won't use them again.
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Old 11-22-2013, 03:12 PM   #33
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Nice classic twist and go from Honda My experience with the Aero 125 was that it accelrated like a little sportbike. Very peppy engine for it's time. the only modern scooter close to the NC125 is the Genuine Rattler 110

About your carburetor repair, I'm surprised that Honda couldn't find you the proper O-ring for that float bowl. It is a fairly common configuration for some of Honda's small bikes.

Your repair should be considered temporary at best.

Superglue is a bit suspect when in constant contact with gas, especially with ethanol and whatever else they add for 'clean engine running' additives. Acetone itself will easily dissolve superglue, and superglue is not flexible, so you want a very flexible and fuel tight seal because that little sealed off area is part of the fuel line into the float valve, and to have it start leaking upstream of the float valve will have your bike slowly flooding it's engine, or leaking gas onto the ground or floor of your garage. It will probably flood your crankcase, not such a big deal on a two stroke, but still not desirable.

Honestly, I'd get the proper gasket, it will save you a lot of mysterious leaks and engine won't run/flooded scenarios.
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Old 11-23-2013, 07:44 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by brianwheelies View Post
I tried Dynabeads in my DR650 wheels and ended up with flat spots on the tires. Maybe if they are installed and the adjusted on a balancer?

I won't use them again.
Thanks. I haven't had a lot of experience with this product, but I'm curious. Opinions are all over the place and from what I read one possibility of the beads not working would be if a lot of tire lube was used in mounting the tire. This would prevent the beads from doing their job, which sounds reasonable.

I'm still in the garage now working on the front tire but once I get her back on the road I'll be able to post my impressions and see if my ride is wobbly or smooth. I probably won't be going as fast on my scooter as you most likely do on your DR650 so maybe that will make a difference, too.
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Old 11-23-2013, 08:06 AM   #35
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Nice classic twist and go from Honda My experience with the Aero 125 was that it accelrated like a little sportbike. Very peppy engine for it's time. the only modern scooter close to the NC125 is the Genuine Rattler 110

About your carburetor repair, I'm surprised that Honda couldn't find you the proper O-ring for that float bowl. It is a fairly common configuration for some of Honda's small bikes.

Your repair should be considered temporary at best.

Superglue is a bit suspect when in constant contact with gas, especially with ethanol and whatever else they add for 'clean engine running' additives. Acetone itself will easily dissolve superglue, and superglue is not flexible, so you want a very flexible and fuel tight seal because that little sealed off area is part of the fuel line into the float valve, and to have it start leaking upstream of the float valve will have your bike slowly flooding it's engine, or leaking gas onto the ground or floor of your garage. It will probably flood your crankcase, not such a big deal on a two stroke, but still not desirable.

Honestly, I'd get the proper gasket, it will save you a lot of mysterious leaks and engine won't run/flooded scenarios.
Wow, that's a lot of information & some good points.

Yes, I'd call it peppy, too. That's why it's such a kick to ride. Sounds like you remember it well.

I agree that some little Honda o-ring shouldn't be that hard to run down, but it seems to be the case. There are Keihin carb rebuild kits all over ebay but I'm not certain of a direct application; and then there are complete carbs available that are usually big bucks without guaranteeing a serviceable part. I will look further for the Spacy which was the non-USA version of the NH125; maybe that will lend results.

I suppose it's one of those things that I'll keep an eye on and then deal with as it comes up. If I can locate the proper part before anything bad happens, I'll be more than willing to make the switch.

What's a Genuine Rattler 110?
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Old 11-23-2013, 10:00 AM   #36
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I'm a big fan of what works. If the super glue thing worked, then it worked. Many times the problem is keeping the new o-ring seal in place until the pieces are reassembled, because after they are all squeezed together there's no adhesive needed. If the superglue rots, as long as the carb stays screwed together you're probably going to be OK.

Two things come to mind reading your posts:

1. Using heat to get things apart and together is frequently very helpful. I use a hair dryer if the heat needs to be controlled, and an electric heat gun for full blast hot. It's useful on stuck screws and on warped plastic parts. It softens gaskets and o-rings to get them on and off.

2. I taught myself to be comfortable working in "examination gloves" the rubbery things your doctor uses. I buy them at Costco. Get them small enough that they are not sloppy at all. Yes, they tear easily, but they are cheap so just put on another one. You can feel through them. At the end of the job you peel them off and your hands are not grimy and there's no black grease ground into your knuckles and finger nails.

You may now return to working on your Honda.
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Old 11-23-2013, 11:49 AM   #37
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This thread is making me want to look for an Aero 125.
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Old 11-23-2013, 02:26 PM   #38
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Originally Posted by RedArrow View Post
Thanks. I haven't had a lot of experience with this product, but I'm curious. Opinions are all over the place and from what I read one possibility of the beads not working would be if a lot of tire lube was used in mounting the tire. This would prevent the beads from doing their job, which sounds reasonable.

I'm still in the garage now working on the front tire but once I get her back on the road I'll be able to post my impressions and see if my ride is wobbly or smooth. I probably won't be going as fast on my scooter as you most likely do on your DR650 so maybe that will make a difference, too.
Wish that were the case but I used mine in tubed tires.
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Old 11-23-2013, 06:34 PM   #39
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It's amazing that they are tubeless tires. Most scooters back then used tube type tires. Imagine what it would be like like to have to go through everything it took to replace the tires by yourself on the side of the road somewhere, just because you had a flat? With tubeless tires all you have to do is stick a plug in them, and air them back up. I recommend carrying a tubeless tire repair kit kit and a pump.

It's also amazing you got the tires off and on without bending the rims. For some reason, many scooters with steel rims used REALLY soft metal for the rims, and it was almost impossible to get tires on and off without damaging them, even with some kind of protectors. I damaged a rim on an Elite 80 removing a tire, and I was really careful with it. Those scooters used tube type tires all the way up to the end of production in '07.

I have a motorcycle tire bead breaker from JC Whitney that also works great on scooter tires. I only use 2 tire irons, but have used visegrips to clamp on the rim to hold the tire in place. I fold a heavy piece of leather over the rim to protect it, then put the visegrips on over the leather. I have used everything for mounting lubricant, but the last few years I have been using WD-40. It makes the rubber so slippery the tire almost pops on and off the rim by itself. You need to wash it off before riding. I also use a ratchet tie down strap to seat the bead if necessary, but have used rope like you did.


I have never balanced scooter tires, and never had a problem. They are so small in diameter that they are not going to be off very much. The larger in diameter a tire is, the more critical balancing becomes. I have never used any kind of balancing beads or liquid, I balance them with weights clamped or glued on the rims.


On the filter, you will wind up having to come up with some kind of a filter at some point. I have bought used bikes with foam filters that were completely rotted. I have never seen dirt on a filter cause a problem. My dirt bike has an oiled foam filter, which I clean in gasoline and reoil with whatever motor oil I have around. I squeeze out the excess oil, but leave as much as possible without it dripping. It is the oil that catches and holds the dirt. After a single day riding in the dusty AZ desert, the filter will be completely caked with dirt on the outside, but the engine still runs fine. I just remove it, rinse it out in gasoline, reoil it and put it back. I have never had any dirt get through the filter. To make a filter, you will need the right kind of foam. There is likely a filter available that will fit as is, or with a slight modification.
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Old 11-24-2013, 10:02 AM   #40
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This thread is making me want to look for an Aero 125.
Mission accomplished.
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Old 11-24-2013, 11:07 AM   #41
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Wentwest ~ Those are great words — Go with what works. The Krazy Glue was mostly to hold the thing in place and it's not a high-pressure coupling or anything so I'm hoping the squeezing of the bowl to the carb body is going to do its thing. Now after having said that I'll probably go out in the garage and find a big puddle of gas on the floor. Great input on other uses of my hair dryer besides just making me look gorgeous. My bf was telling me the other day about a procedure for his Honda about putting crankcase back together and it says to put the case in the oven and the bearings in the freezer, so I realize how much heat can help at times; when my rubber tires were too stiff to re-bead from being too cold comes to mind.

About the blue gloves: you may notice that in the first photos I was wearing them. Then I guess I got too excited about working on the bike and then we seemed to forget to take the time to put them on. Also, I've got to get some some small ones; the ones we have are mediums and are pretty droopy to really work well in. But I do like them.

Brian ~ So you were running tubes? Oh well, another great theory of mine bites the dust. I can't take the beads out, so at this point I guess I'm running a rolling experiment, and after a few thousand miles I'll either be swearing by them or at them. Wish me luck.

Jerry H ~ I don't know what Honda made my rims out of but it sure seems hard enough to withstand my fumbling first attempts at tire changing. One thing working on my scooter has taught me was all kinds of respect for the roadside repair. I can only imagine dealing with tire removal and tube replacement under a blazing sun surrounded by hungry buzzards wearing napkins around their necks. No, thanks.

It seems, though, that most of the scooter photos I've seen involving spares have only the tire mounted on the outside of the rim, so that changing a flat wouldn't involve touching the tire at all, saving a lot of roadside drama, I would think. I'm trying to locate a decent, non-rusty extra 10" rim for mounting a spare so I can reduce changing a flat to just a few nuts and bolts.

You should have seen the air filter on my bf's old Honda when he got it — the foam just fell off it like wet spongecake. Couldn't say how long it was on there, but inside the intake was surprisingly clean so I imagine it was doing its job. Read somewhere not to clean the foam element in gasoline as it causes the foam to disintegrate although now that I think about it, it might have been on YouTube. Just goes to show you to go with what works, huh? I used a fancy kit form K&N but maybe some 30w would have worked just as well.

As for my tire saga, here are some pics I thought I'd share. The first is my Jed Clampett Tire Insert System® made with scissors and cardboard. Left in the sun, this tire is at least looking like a proper tire from the start instead of my first one which more resembled an unsuccessful souffle.



This tidbit is probably only news to me, but maybe there is one or two other folks out in the blogishpere who didn't know that a tire's birthday is right on the side of the tire. So even if those tires on the used scooter you just picked up look OK, you might want to go ahead and change them anyway based on how old they are.



Those numbers are a code where the first two represent the week and the last two, the year. So the rear tire I just removed from my 84 Honda was manufactured on the fifth week of 2001, making it about 12 years old when I got it! There was no dry rot present, but rubber hardens as it ages and can't preform like it was designed to. Changing it seemed like a good idea.

Another interesting tidbit on my new Michelin. Who'd have thunk it?



Tootles ~
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Old 11-25-2013, 03:03 PM   #42
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Laugh Happy Birthday!!!

I'm a bit late but I wanted to note that November 17th was Soichiro Honda's birthday (back in 1906). If it wasn't for him, none of us would be able to enjoy these great scooters and motorcycles that we have come to love so much and which have become so much of our daily lives. So here's to you, Soichiro. I also learned that the first Honda Motorcycle dealership in the US was established in 1959, my birth year (The Year of the Pig ~ and the sign of enjoyment in all things) so I feel especially linked to the Honda brand.

I also wanted to wish all my fellow inmates a Happy Thanksgiving, and if you're not living in the US, just go out and stuff yourself anyway!

Ride Safe.
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Old 11-25-2013, 06:39 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by RedArrow View Post
Wow, that's a lot of information & some good points.

Yes, I'd call it peppy, too. That's why it's such a kick to ride. Sounds like you remember it well.

I agree that some little Honda o-ring shouldn't be that hard to run down, but it seems to be the case. There are Keihin carb rebuild kits all over ebay but I'm not certain of a direct application; and then there are complete carbs available that are usually big bucks without guaranteeing a serviceable part. I will look further for the Spacy which was the non-USA version of the NH125; maybe that will lend results.

I suppose it's one of those things that I'll keep an eye on and then deal with as it comes up. If I can locate the proper part before anything bad happens, I'll be more than willing to make the switch.

What's a Genuine Rattler 110?


A bike we sold at the scooter store I turned wrenches at. The particular one I had a chance to ride, was kitted with a variator upgrade, bored and porting, and a tuned exhaust. Was a head snapper from standstill.

I don't think your fix will be an immediate problem, but safe to have the gasket bits, just in case. And you know how to work on carburetors, so it's an easy fix. One thing, if you find yourself disassembling Japanese carburetors with regularity, is to get a JIS, ( Japanese Industrial Standards..) set of screwdrivers, at least the #2 and #3's, as you've probably found that normal Phillips screwdrivers don't seem to work great on float bowl capscrews.
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Old 11-25-2013, 06:46 PM   #44
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I'm a bit late but I wanted to note that November 17th was Soichiro Honda's birthday (back in 1906). If it wasn't for him, none of us would be able to enjoy these great scooters and motorcycles that we have come to love so much and which have become so much of our daily lives. So here's to you, Soichiro. I also learned that the first Honda Motorcycle dealership in the US was established in 1959, my birth year (The Year of the Pig ~ and the sign of enjoyment in all things) so I feel especially linked to the Honda brand.

I also wanted to wish all my fellow inmates a Happy Thanksgiving, and if you're not living in the US, just go out and stuff yourself anyway!

Ride Safe.
Yes I own one of his SuperCubs.. last year of the CA102 model the 1968. The blue ones are the fastest..

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Old 11-25-2013, 07:34 PM   #45
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I replace all my Japanese carb screws with Allen screws. Most motorcycle CV carbs have 8 of them, 4 that hold the top cover on, 4 for the float bowl, and on many carbs, 2-3 more on the coasting enrichener cover. I have a couple of high quality JIS screwdrivers, and about a 100 of them that came in various Japanese bike tool kits.

The Rattler 110 was, I believe, the last 2 stroke vehicle over 50cc sold in the U.S. Made by PGO, sold by Genuine.
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