Wednesday, 4 October 2017

Back home!

Just got back around 15:00 Wednesday 2300 kms, my front tyre is toast (new one ordered), in 4 days. Libby says I should've taken more time and looked around more!

The route on this day, was up to Aurillac and then across to Puy en Verlay, then Annonay and home. Not the most exciting way to get across this part of France, mostly fast A road type roads, but with a flagging front tyre (yes at one point I thought it was flat) I wasn't up to any last knee down experiences. The bike has now been cleaned and the front wheel removed for tyre changing on Friday. A great trip! Oh the photos here are near St. Bonnet Le Froid the colours of the autumnal leaves were spectacular although it doesn't come out in the photos.

Roadtrip 3

I left the hotel this morning in the direction of St. Jean de Luz, it wasn't raining but the roads were damp. I regretted going right to the coast as the weather got worse and the traffic equally worsened.

I took the obligatory photo of the Atlantic and then made my way up the coast to Bayonne and then went inland, finally ending up at Tom & Di's for cup of tea just after lunch (13:00). Just before arriving at their place the heavens opened and the wets went on again. I left their place after 15:00 and headed towards Montauban and then finishing at the pretty town of Villefranche de Rouergue. The bike is parked up in a private hotel carpark so I am having a look round before dinner.

Road trip 2

Well it's pissing down today so a late start is in order, and it gives me a chance to update you on my travels.

Yesterday I left Perpignan in the rain. I took the N116 which although being a faster "A" type road it ends up climbing into the Pyrenees at Font Romeu which is a ski resort, if I am not mistaken I think I went over a pass at over 1700 metres!

After that you are in Spain. The N-260 was the initial road of choice, and although starting off in the valley straights and wide, you get to see all colours of roads. Once it starts into the hills it is fantastic, the Spanish are not good at building constant radius bends, they just follow the lie of the land resulting in some surprising rollercoaster roads, absolutely bringing a smile to my face, oh and I took off the waterproofs after about 90 mins into the journey. I took some photos but nothing really can describe the changing colours and the light over the mountains. I stopped for a late lunch in Jaca. 16 euros for a 3 course posh dinner with coffee and dessert wine (which I didn't drink - sober October). Looking at the map I should just about make it back over into France for a hotel. Unfortunately I got lost in some very small single track roads, and it took me ages to find the border, by this time the wets were back on and I turned up in St. Jean Pied de Port at around 20:00. Luckily the first hotel had a room, so pizza and bed! A long but great day marred by dropping my phone and smashing the screen!

Sunday, 1 October 2017

Road trip

I am off this week on the Daytona for my first hedonistic trip on the bike. I am heading for the "coast to coast" from the med. To the Atlantic. Apparently the roads are better on the Spanish side so I will be mainly in Spain, but starting from Perpignan in France and ending up at st. Jean de Luz in France also.

Today's part was to travel down to Perpignan, I decided to go a pretty direct route through the Ardeche, Cevennes and the Tarn. Finishing up on a portion of motorway (A75) down to Bezier and then Perpignan. I stopped at the beach to prove I at least got that far!

The roads I chose were for most part pretty good, although lots of the smaller roads had loose gravel newly spread on them, and these were less fun.

Tomorrow starts the real trip across the Pyrenees I hope the weather stays OK.

Saturday, 30 September 2017


Pierre-Luc and I went to Ledenon with my 3 bikes (350, 500 & 600). The 500 worked OK, but later on the Saturday it wasn't great, so took the 350 out for a couple of runs.

On the Sunday I tried the 500 for the first run, but even in the cool morning it wasn't going well, so went back to the 350 and PL on the FZR. We swapped over for a couple of runs, the 600 is really good fun and easy to drive.

No break downs or crashes, so a good weekend. Once home found a leak on the pickup again, which probably leaked because of using non petrol resistant silicon sealer (at Paul Ricard), also discovered a leak from one of the petrol connections, so that's all been fixed! Should be good to go for Ales next month!

Monday, 18 September 2017

350 lives again

Well the 350 started much easier than before so that issue has definately been fixed, however still not running right, little adjustments on the carbs seem to make little difference, so to cut a long story short I noticed that the engine seemd to be blowing back through the left hand carb. this turned out to be rather worn carbon reed valves, so they all got changed out aswell and it now runs loads better - so happy with that result. Ready for the track.

I have also been playing with FZR engines. Remember back I recovered a some what dodgy engine with a bike, and plus one of my mates from proclassic donated a whole load of engine bits to me, so I was thinking to make a spare track/road engine out of the two.

I started by opening up the water damaged one, and it's a real shame as anywhere the water (sludge level) had not covered a part it was rusty as hell, the cam shafts are toast, along with the cam followers, however the head is useable, one of the barrels is marked and the others all have water marks on them so I think that would need a rebore to be serviceable.

The bottom half wasn't as bad as it had sat covered in sludge so the metal had not had the air to react with. One of the big ends is a little stiff, so for the moment I am not using that crankshaft, some of the gearbox gears were rusty but in general cleaned up well and will make good spares. With all the useful bits bagged and catalogued (yeah right...), time to look at the other engine. This one had literally been thrown together for easier transport, so the covers were missing screws etc... with this engine I have good cam shafts, a good crank, and a resonable gearbox, although I have swapped over some of the gears as there were marks on some of the dogs etc... and this model is known to have a weak 2nd gear.

The only parts I need to buy are :- new main bearing journals, a couple of oil seals and a new gearbox sprocket!
oh and both secondary gearbox shafts have useless threads (sprocket nut), so will need either replacing or bodging.
A quick look on ebay, and got a complete gearbox for $50, however someone suggested a fix, so here it is, a 3.0mm hole drilled through the damged thread and then the sprocket will be held by a washer and split pin!
I was a bit worried about drilling through the hardened steel, but it was OK, and I didn't even break a drill bit. So the gearbox is now in place in the upper crankcase.
Right working out the size of the main bearing journals is a bit of a faff. Yamaha have etched 2 sets of numbers, one of the left hand crank web and the other on the crankcase.

The number on the Crank in this case 2112221112 refers to the size of the crank bearing surfaces. The crankcase number 454645 refers to the crankcase journal seats, you may notice that the numbers are not the same length, that's because Yam added the con-rod bearing surface sizes, so as I am not touching the con-rods I can ignore the right hand side 4 numbers. So that gives me : 211222 and 454645.

In order to work out the journals to purchase you need to subtract the relevant pairs. That means :
With this you go to your favourite online shop (or local dealer) and order your journals. I have 2x2, 2x3 and 2x4 and these are colour coded to be 2 x 2 black (1WG11416-10), 2 x 3 brown (1WG11416-20) and finally 2 x 4 green (1WG11416-30).

Of course I am assuming that the original Yam sizes are what is in there and that they haven't significantly wornout. By the way, the reason I am changing this is because they are pretty much all marked up in some way, this may point to bad oil changes or significant crap in the sump which is what I found! You can go through the complete process of measuring clearances with Plastigage, but to be honest I couldn't be fussed, let's hope this was not a foolish shortcut.

Will update you when I get my bits....

Tuesday, 29 August 2017

New Piston

A bit disappointed with my new piston, it looks like it has been water damaged or something. It doesn't seem to be physically compromised, so it went in, after a good clean. The new and old pistons are physically the same - 210 grams

It went in, no problem and the rings were in perfect condition so should be OK. I broke the temperature thermocouple as it was all going back, but one from my FZR stock of parts will fit. Just need to fill up liquids tomorrow and see if it works!