My 1st Airhead R75/6

Discussion in 'Airheads' started by lake_harley, Jun 9, 2012.

  1. disston

    disston ShadeTreeExpert

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    The noise is in neutral with the clutch lever not pulled in, idling. Next time try pulling the clutch lever in and even with out shifting into gear the noise will go away. It is louder on some machines than others. My R90/6 it has seemed louder lately. Even if it's not too loud it's always there. Sometimes balancing the carbs makes it less. Somebody mentioned once what it actually is. It's in the trans or the clutch throw out mechanism, I forget.

    I ignore it, or try to.

    It is usually possible to wedge one of the probes into a cylinder fin and tension it against the carb cable or something. Same technique is used for the trouble light when setting static timing.
    #41
  2. mspa

    mspa Been here awhile

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    I must be weird, I actually like that goofy kickstand, except when I can't get it to disengage from the frame :D

    To me, there is something really fun about casually sitting the bike straight up (sitting on it of course) and letting that thing spring back in place.
    #42
  3. mspa

    mspa Been here awhile

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    I've been told that if you don't hear that sound you should be concerned. I would describe it as a mechanically loose knocking sound. Kind of like a large sewing machine made out of big metal parts.
    #43
  4. lake_harley

    lake_harley Been here awhile

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    As always, thanks for the replies about the noise based on experience. It doesn't seem that the noise was anything unusual, but I'll be able to listen with a somewhat more educated ear now.

    I continue to slowly sort through some other small things on the bike. It now has a working headlight dimmer switch and a new front brake line.

    For what it's worth, my friend who makes hoses and hydraulic lines only charged $30 for the front brake hose. For comparison, the one on-line dealer I looked up has the front brake hose priced at $91....Yikes that's a big difference. For mine we used D.O.T. rubber hose, but he also has braided hose and a rather nice braided hose with a black cover that looks nice too. This was about the 6th or 7th hose he's made for me for various bikes and I've never had a problem. I don't know if it would be proper to post contact info for the hose business or not, but if anyone is interested in getting in touch with him PM me or let me know if it's OK to post his phone number. He made a note of the fittings and length, so he'd be able to duplicate a line for at least a '75 R75/6 without sending a pattern.

    In running the bike in the garage just a bit, I've also noticed that sometime when I turn on the key the neutral, generator and oil lights all light up, but sometime the generator light doesn't light up. It (generator light) has never been on with the bike running...not even flickering or partially illuminated. Since I know the bulb is good where would be a likely place to cause the intermittent light? Last time(s) I had it running for a bit I forgot to check the battery voltage with the bike running, but I'll do that next time.

    Next question is tires....oh NO! Since this is a project bike and I don't know any background on it, I don't want to sink a lot of $$ on tires until I've had a chance to ride it some. The tires on it now are so bad I wouldn't think of riding it on the highway, and it certainly wouldn't pass state inspection. I think they might have been put on during the Carter administration:lol3. To get something road worthy on it, I've looked quite a bit and found these Duro tires http://www.bikebandit.com/duro-hf317-classic-vintage-motorcycle-tire and http://www.bikebandit.com/duro-hf318-classic-vintage-motorcycle-tire? at a low price, but wondered it the ribbed front is bad for any reason on a /6. They would at least give me an opportinuty to do some "shake-down" riding without spending a lot. I'd put someone's useable take-offs on it short term if I had any available! Most other tires in the 3.25-19 and 4.00-18 sizes are near $100 per tire, and with me being frugal, that seems like a lot for such an "unknown condition" bike.

    Thanks, in advance!

    Lynn
    #44
  5. rufusswan

    rufusswan Been here awhile

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    I was in the same tire delima when I began getting my bike back on the road. Had good 15 yr old rubber, if there is such a thing, but I didn't have the extra cash , so....

    I opted for a set of the Duro's. At least they were new and cheap. I got maybe 5K miles out of the rear but that was ok. I still have the Duro on the front and have no complaints about it.
    #45
  6. lake_harley

    lake_harley Been here awhile

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    rufasswan....Good enough recommendation on the Duro tires to suit me. I ordered a pair this evening from BikeBandit. Just under $100 for the pair, including shipping.

    Now that I have tires taken care of, I just need to figure out if I have a charging issue, or if everything is OK. If someone can comment on my intermittent GEN light with the key turned on (details two posts back), that would be a big help. I think I'll have some time tomorrow to tinker with it.

    Lynn
    #46
  7. TVtommy

    TVtommy Been here awhile

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    Reading this thread with interest...

    I bought my /6 with the intention of trading it eventually for an RT. I might keep it now....spent a couple of hours on the wheels this weekend...

    [​IMG]

    She cleans up well...works in progress....

    [​IMG]
    #47
  8. lake_harley

    lake_harley Been here awhile

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    TVtommy....Your last name isn't Ivo is it? For those not old enough, TV Tommy Ivo campaigned a top fuel dragster in the 60's...providing I really remember correctly :lol3

    That's a great looking bike! I don't think I'll ever have the patience, or care to spend the money to make mine as nice looking as that. I'm still plugging away as time permits to get mine running well.

    Update on the Duro tires from a few posts back. They arrived via the brown truck today. They certainly aren't any top-of-the-line-looking tires, but if they'll stay between the tubes and the road for a while I'll be happy with my <$100 purchase.

    Lynn
    #48
  9. TVtommy

    TVtommy Been here awhile

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    It just looks good in pics! :D

    I went with Conti GO tires....just to get something on it, I might change them at some point.

    Someone suggested Simichrome to bring the wheels back to life....awesome stuff! I need to do the spokes now...the wheels came out great....

    Honestly I'm surprised how much I'm enjoying it. I thought this would be a fix it and turn it over kinda thing, but she's growing on me.....

    Nope...not Tommy Ivo. Legend!
    #49
  10. lake_harley

    lake_harley Been here awhile

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    My GEN light is intermittent. It will only come on when the key is turned on about 1 out of 5 times. Started the bike today, after the light came on with the ignition, and it was charging ~13.6 V at the battery, so it seems the charging system is capable of working. I'm wondering if the voltage regulator is a likely place that could be causing the intermittent light? I know from reading other threads that the light must come on to "trigger" the charging system at start up. Any other suggestions of where to start looking? Rotor shows ~3.4 Ohms between the slip rings.

    The bike is still in project form at this point, but it's getting dangerously close to going in for state inspection.

    Thanks, in advance.

    Lynn
    #50
  11. disston

    disston ShadeTreeExpert

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    It really does sound like a loose or dirty connection. Add also possibly worn out brushes.
    #51
  12. Horsehockey

    Horsehockey A GPS? Huh?

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    Your ohm result on the rotor sounds fine. If it were mine, I'd do three things: remove the tank and clean all the connections on the starter relay (left side main spine below your brake master cylinder reservoir), remove the big black plug from the instrument cluster and slightly pinch the female #12 in the black plug...just enough to deform it slightly to restore firm contact with the pin in the connector (it's your ground to your cluster bulbs) and remove and clean your two 8 amp fuses in the headlamp bucket. While it is possible that none of these measures will cure your intermittent gen lamp, you have not wasted your time. Basically, I'm with Disston. Probably a poor or corroded contact.
    #52
  13. lake_harley

    lake_harley Been here awhile

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    disston and Horsehocky...thanks for the replies. It's even better that you agree that loose/bad connections may be the culprit. Now that bad connections were mentioned, the NEUTRAL and OIL lights aren't 100% either. Getting into the back of the guage cluster sounds, and looks, like quite a task in the Clymer manual. Probably plenty other reasons to go in, just to clean up everything and apply dielectric grease to all the connections. I've been doing that on everything I have had apart.

    Put my new Duro tires on. Getting the back wheel/tire off turned out to be quite a deal. Ride-off stand required getting the bike up on some boards to get some added height for manuvering the wheel out, Have you ever tried to describe to your wife where you want her to put a board, which board you want her to use and which way to turn it while you're holding the bike up?:huh She's a keeper though....for sure! Even after removing the Krauser side case rack, the removal was a squeaker. Since I only have one sidecase (still needing a white right side case in case someone has an extra for sale) I just left the rack off for now. Gave the final drive splines a good cleaning and a coat of Honda Moly grease before reassembly. I was pleased that the splines looked to be in pretty good condition. Couldn't see or feel any "step" at the endpoint of male/female engagement on either part.

    If I get this intermittent light thing solved I should be about ready for some serious test rides.:clap

    Thanks again!

    Lynn
    #53
  14. Horsehockey

    Horsehockey A GPS? Huh?

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    Lynn-
    Your efforts to learn about your new airhead and to take the steps necessary to restore it to reliability will be rewarded tenfold...in the fullness of time. Unless a prior owner "customized" the electrical system, many gremlins are cured (and later avoided) by a thorough cleaning and dielectric greasing of connections. Many airhead maintenance tasks are sort of intimidating the first time and then are much simpler later. Clymer can make removal of the cluster sound like a two hour job, but I can have mine off in 15 minutes if needed...and I have an S fairing. It just comes with practice. We can walk you through any of the jobs if you get stumped. Keep up the good work.
    #54
  15. disston

    disston ShadeTreeExpert

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    What Horehockey was talking about was not getting into the instrument cluster but trying to tighten up the connections of the black plug that attach to the back of the instrument cluster.

    First remove the speedo and the tach cables from the back of the instrument cluster. There will only be in they way if left attached.

    You should disco the bolts on the bottom of the instruments that hold it to the bracket.

    You'll see where the wiring harness plugs into the cluster. Pull up and twist just enough so you can use a small Phillips screwdriver on the tiny screw that holds the wiring harness plug.

    It is the small connections in the wiring harness plug that need tightening. The cluster has a series of pins in it's back. The cluster should be completely free of the wiring and the entire motorcycle by this time, set it aside. These pins that you see in the instrument cluster mate with small metal sockets in the plug. The female sockets in the plug are a typical sort of construction for this, of this vintage. The sockets are split on one side. They are a soft metal. Using a small sharp pointy object they can be tightened by inseringt said object into the rubber along the side of the socket. Compress the socket a small amount.

    This is a delicate operation but doable by almost any sober person.(did he really say that?) (Yes, I did)

    There are things inside the instruments we sometimes try to repair. There are a few things you may someday want to investigate. But if you have no reason to open the cluster up at this time then leave it alone. If you do open it up or anytime you open it up the first thing to know is the small screws used for holding things together do not get a lot of torque. Over torquing the screws will cause water leakage and more problems down the road. The cover screws especially go into small brass inserts in the plastic cover and if over tightened they will crack the plastic.

    Put everything back together, small screw in the plug to hold it. And the speedo and tach cables. I put these on finger tight and then add a small amount of torque with a Chanell lock pliers. Only about 1/8 of a turn. Careful not to scratch the knurled nut.
    #55
  16. lake_harley

    lake_harley Been here awhile

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    disston....great description of what I need to do and just where the problem(s) might be. I was out in the garage a bit earlier this evening and saw the plug you're referring to on the backside (actually the frontside:D) of the cluster. Hadn't noticed the little plug before. Since I quit drinking about 15 years ago I think I qualify to do the repairs since, as you put it, "any sober person can do it". I liked that! I'll try not to be too ham-fisted either.

    I might see how the day goes tomorrow and give it a go. If not tomorrow, it'll have to wait about a week since my wife and I are leaving Sunday on our '83 Gold Wing for about a 6 day trip to Asheville, NC.to see the Biltmore Mansion and whatever else we might decide to look at along the way. I understand Deals Gap isn't too far away, but I just don't know if I want to strain myself so much by riding something like that two-up on a packed-up Gold Wing. We'll see.

    Thanks...as always:thumb

    Lynn
    #56
  17. Horsehockey

    Horsehockey A GPS? Huh?

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    I just read through the thread again and have a couple thoughts. The first is to buy a Greyhound bus ticket for crazydrummerdude to come to your place. A four hour tech session with the dudemeister would be equivalent to about 200 postings here. Maybe more. I now realize that you've replaced the starter relay. Excellent. That makes me think your unreliable gen lamp is either the pins in the plug (discussed above) or corrosion on the connections on your diode board (located under the front cover). An alternative source of this issue is your brushes, as the esteemed Disston has suggested (and yes, Disston, I've forgiven you for referring to me as "Horehockey" in your post). With regard to your brushes, do we know how many miles are on your bike? Brushes are said by at least one guru to have a life of approximately 80K miles. Then they get too stubby and start to "hang up" on their little pigtails on the brushholders. Any chance you could post a picture of your brushes in their little nests?
    #57
  18. lake_harley

    lake_harley Been here awhile

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    I wish I could have taken crazydrummerdude up on his offer to come down for a tech day when he offered shortly after I bought the bike. Unfortunately, my fabrication business is "feast or famine" and I was really busy for months about that time and had to ignore the bike until just recently. I agree, an experienced guide would have sped the project. Oh well, I'm learning a lot along the way. I'm quite mechanically inclined, but even with the almost 800 pages in the Clymer manual they can't address every little aspect of what happens to a almost 40 year old bike when it's been sitting for a few years. Complete disassemby and reassembly would be ideal, but then I'd be tempted to re-do everything and it would take a really long time and cost a lot of $$. I don't have any desire for a "restored" bike; I love the character the "patina" gives the bike. As I look at it I'm just catching up on years of neglected maintenance. Nothing like the lessons learned from the school of experience and that's why I appreciate everyone taking the time to post helpful hints here!

    I had the brushes out of the holders. I seem to recall a minimum length of about .32" in the manual. I didn't get out my caliper, but per a tape measure at hand they were over 3/8" (.375"), so they should be good, although are probably candidates for replacement soon. The "watch springs" have plenty of room before they even get close to bottoming out, and the length of the brushes would seem adequate to keep them from "cocking" and hanging up in their holders. The bike has just under 112xxx miles on it as best I can figure. The PO bought it with 20K-ish miles and it's now showing 11,xxx so I'm figuring he rode it the ~90K over his long ownership. I'll get into the instrument cluster plug to clean-up and tune-up as needed and see what happens. Another thread here recently had to do with a non-charging issue and several posters went into detail about the current "flow" on the way to the brushes. I'll refer back to that thread for more info as I might need it. I try to avoid posting every niggling question here so I don't make a pest of myself or get too lazy to learn on my own.

    Thanks

    Lynn
    #58
  19. disston

    disston ShadeTreeExpert

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    A Goldwing? No class. Cruise all day long. Never break down.

    I'll try to do better Bill. I must have been tired. Thanks for understanding. :freaky

    I love using that emoticon of the two guys drinking. I don't know why but it often says something I can't otherwise express. I do use it a lot. We got sober the same year LH. I had my 50th birthday in rehab.
    #59
  20. lake_harley

    lake_harley Been here awhile

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    My son, now almost 22, went off to his first day in 1st grade while I was in rehab. I guess I was 45. Small price to pay though for the benefits it's brought to my life.:clap

    I'll hope you're right about the Gold Wing ..... "Never break down"! Sometime on a trip I've taken the title along in case it does break in a major way. I only have about $650 in it and figure I could get enough $$ out of it, even broken, for a bus ticket home:lol3. Since I resurrected it from neglect a few years ago I've put 13xxx+ miles on it, so I figure it doesn't owe me anything anymore. I'd love to have a R1200RT for 2-up touring, but my wife is perfectly happy as pillon on the 'Wing, so why mess with a proven thing or spend the money?

    Lynn
    #60