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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'd like to see if this would be a useful post and have those guys with a lot of experience post their various tips on different kinds of modifications, procedures, etc. I spend a lot of time reading on this forum and those little nuggets of useful information are sometimes hard to find. And I'm talking about the simple things like when you're removing your tank take a balled-up rag and put it in between the tank and the bracket where you took the bolt out of so that it gives you more room to work on the fuel line and vacuum line coming off the petcock valve.

So I'll start it off by sharing one tip that I don't think I've seen anybody else use that for me made a huge difference when I try to do the string thing and align my back tire. And I'm not going to share the whole procedure. I'm just adding one little tip. There are some great posts (FOG) that take you step by step through the string thing so I'm not going to duplicate that. But what I did was take a piece of wood and cut it to the same width as my back tire, 140 mm (5.512in). Then I used this as a spacer between the strings out past the front tire. That way I knew 100% that the strings running from the back tire out past the front tire were exactly parallel (as long as I followed the rest of the instructions) this made a world of difference for me and I hope it helps you.
And if doing it this way will be too confusing, let me know and I'll just post that tip on a string thing thread.
Thanks!
 

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the only reason you do the string thing for (personally I use a laser level not string) is because the marks on the swingarm are no way accurate to get the wheels in alignment. my tip once you have done the whole procedure. mark the swingarm and wheel bracket with small indent line using a small chisel. next time if the new marks are in line it must be right.
if I have to alter it say to tighten the chain slack and the marks are no longer in line making them even puts it back in line again.
 

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I really like the primus of this thread. It has the potential to be a great thread.
I did go ahead and move it to general discussion. Reason being, it isn't really in the spirit of a How-To write up.
That being said, depending on how it progresses, it could end up at some point being stickied in the general discussion.

I'll see if I can come up with something to add to it later.(y)
 
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I did the string thing once, many many moons ago (I must have been bored and felt like a scientist at the time) It was more work than it was worth. My method on this bike for chain adjustment (bear in mind that it is not done too often) I measure off the threaded adjuster with my vernier caliper from the end lock nut. I also use the cresent moons in the (back of the axle or the front) to judge spacing, get them correct on both sides and your good. I take into account the scribe marks too just for grins.

My other bikes have single sided swing arms with a large hub accentric adjuster, there is no side to side adjustment that you can mis-adjust. Cheers
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Here is a tip on another procedure that I wish I knew before I did it. Steering head bearing replacement. And this came from someone else but I don't remember who so I can't take credit for it. To seat the bearings in the frame... The steering tube... Use a long bolt, nut, and heavy washers. Since I didn't use this technique, I'm not sure on the specifics, just the general idea. But it sounds like a really easy way rather than pounding them in there. So you put both races in position.. top and bottom... and then with the washers on the outside you put the bolt through and then just tighten the nut and it pulls the races into position. If anyone has done this and wants to elaborate, that would be great.
 

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When installing a new valve stem, resist the temptation to grab it with a pair of pliers. Which would risk damage to the stem.
20210210_101626.jpg

Instead put a proper size nut on it. Then just grab the nut.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
When installing a new valve stem, resist the temptation to grab it with a pair of pliers. Which would risk damage to the stem.
View attachment 53641
Instead put a proper size nut on it. Then just grab the nut.
Great stuff! That is exactly the kind of tip that can save a lot of aggravation. I bet there are a bunch of tips that come from someone doing it the wrong way, lol
And then the tips that just make life easier... (FOG... Bending the retainer clip in the fork tube for easier removal next time, etc)
 

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When trying to put the airbox back on, it's such a tight squeeze it seemed impossible to get the duct intake covers over the mouths of the carbs. Damn that was frustrating! I finally realized that if I folded them back on to themselves, folded the front of the intake covers backwards, dropped them in to place (attached to the airbox of course) and just flipped them forward, they would snap over the carb mouths in a flash. Then just roll the spring forward 'til if slips in the groove and you're good to go.
 

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It's much easier to connect and disconnect the throttle cables at the carbs if you do it with the carbs removed.
 
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also while removing the carbs it is made far easier if you remove the rear tank bracket. it gives you a few valuable millimeters of wiggle room by pulling the airbox back . it also allows you to move the wiring harness to one side out of the way.
 

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You can help to keep a nut or bolt from cross threading, if at first you rotate in place backwards until it "clicks" or drops in a bit.
 
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Here is a tip on another procedure that I wish I knew before I did it. Steering head bearing replacement. And this came from someone else but I don't remember who so I can't take credit for it. To seat the bearings in the frame... The steering tube... Use a long bolt, nut, and heavy washers. Since I didn't use this technique, I'm not sure on the specifics, just the general idea. But it sounds like a really easy way rather than pounding them in there. So you put both races in position.. top and bottom... and then with the washers on the outside you put the bolt through and then just tighten the nut and it pulls the races into position. If anyone has done this and wants to elaborate, that would be great.
They have tools like that, to be honest, if I used one of those, I would still take one of my nice large impact sockets and give it a couple of love taps with my baby sledge. Just the name alone makes it fun using a tool called "baby sledge" they also make bearing punch kits with different sized disks along with a handle that threads into said disk, then you can go to town with your baby sledge or adolescent sledge. Its a crappy job replacing steering head bearings, worst part is backing the bike on the lift backwards. I always need someones help on that, just changed 6 light bulbs on one of my Inteceptors, it took over an hour.
 

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Generally speaking when undertaking larger jobs, a limiting factor may be current tools in our possession, sometimes requiring on the spot improvisation. Like playing in a jazz band, making stuff up as you go along, staying within safe yet effective parameters. Varying owner to owner, job to job.

Yup, them VFR's sometimes require plastic removal, time consuming and complicating even the simplest of tasks. Super reliable machines, nonetheless. Love my Honda's.
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Here's a little tip that you might not know about. Advance Auto and AutoZone will let you borrow a lot of different kind of specialty tools free of charge. You leave them a deposit, you use it, bring it back, and get your money back. I've used their gear pullers for getting the fork caps out and bearing drivers for my steering head bearings. And there are a lot of good posts on making do it yourself tools which I've also done. But if you need a specialty tool, check them out cuz you can't beat free,LOL
 

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sometimes requiring on the spot improvisation. Like playing in a jazz band, making stuff up as you go along, staying within safe yet effective parameters. Varying owner to owner, job to job.
Which would make this a valuable thread. I would suspect if we were to get a couple of hundred tips, they would all then be able to be placed into about 5 or 6 categories. Once you start recognizing these categories, and different variances on the same technique, it becomes easier to come up with on the spot improvisation.

Example:
When we look at what Dent4jc says here
Steering head bearing replacement. To seat the bearings in the frame... The steering tube... Use a long bolt, nut, and heavy washers. So you put both races in position.. top and bottom... and then with the washers on the outside you put the bolt through and then just tighten the nut and it pulls the races into position.
Then we look at what fog said here (in another thread)
find a bolt and nut that will fit through the seal . then take two pieces of flat wood. drill a hole through both big enough for your bolt then make a sandwich of the seal, seal plate wood #1 ,#2 bolt and nut then carefully tighten the nut while aligning the seal with the plate ,tighten the nut till the wood clamps the seal in flush.
It's the exact same principle, with different variations.
I will venture to say that fog has never installed a water pump oil seal in the manner that he described above. He was just making a point. (If I'm wrong on that point fog can correct me)
My point is that fog has used that exact same principle many times and on many different applications. Which is why it was easy enough for him to think of it on this application.
I may elaborate more on this later.

Mean time my tip of the day:
When I clean my air filter I always have a precleaned and ready to go filter on hand. That way I just switch them out and I'm ready to roll. Then clean and dry the other filter for the next time.
 
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Here is one I just learned the hard way. From now on when I remove my side fairings or the little plastic piece above my license plate, I will also remove the metal clips that the screws go through. Because I did not do that last time and did not realize that sometimes they're loose enough to rattle off when I go take it for a quick test drive up and down my street without putting on those pieces and those screws back in. Live and learn the hard way ,lol.
Or.... Read some tips and learn the easy way. 😜
 

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EX has nice tail section design, I always take the license plate bulb shroud off along with grab rail and assorted screws, once you know what direction to pull the plastic from its a cinch. I use tennis balls when I do the service on bikes to spread the body work out enough to get the gas tank off without damaging upper fairing/lower fairing mounting tabs. Been doing this for 20 years or more.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Anyone got a tip or trick to putting the front wheel on by yourself. I did finally get it, but I'm sure I didn't do it the easy way judging by how long it took and how many cuss words were screamed.
Thanks
 

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If the part your having trouble with is holding the wheel in place while inserting the axle. You can support the wheel with a telephone book or blocks of wood (or various other items).
 
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Anyone got a tip or trick to putting the front wheel on by yourself. I did finally get it, but I'm sure I didn't do it the easy way judging by how long it took and how many cuss words were screamed.
Thanks
I find the easiest way is to prepare before the wheel is removed. find a longish plank say 2ft long put it under the wheel with chocks so it just rests on the plank, remover the front calliper. and hang it to one side. then remove the axle nut and slide out the axle bolt. then just roll the wheel forwards holding the spacer and speedo drive.
refitting then becomes easy on your own. fit the speedo drive in the correct position aligning the slots hold in place with one hand position the spacer on the other side. place wheel on plank and then just roll the wheel into place.
refit the axle bolt and nut remove the plank from under the wheel. fit calliper do up the axle nut. job done.
oh and do the axle nut up a bit at a time if the wheel starts binding the speedo drive is misaligned.
 
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