Tuesday, May 26, 2009

A Less Than Charming Scooter

There are a lot o very inexpensive scooters being imported from China these days under a variety of brand names, and they all share one thing in common: Low quality- particularly when compared to scooters from makers like Honda, Yamaha, and other major makers. A lot of them have fuel tubing that is reportedly attacked by the ethanol in US gasoline. This results in leaky fuel lines, and gummed up carbs. Some have electric chokes that fail, or any one of a range of problems. This one had 243 miles on it when it showed up at Barry's for diagnosis.

First step was removing the carb- not as easy as it might be. The body panels, which are made of a thin and somewhat brittle material, are held on via a series of interlocking tabs and sheet metal screws. Some of the screws were already stripped. One panel had a tab broken off and refastened with adhesive tape- this on a brand new scooter!

Luckily, it was possible to wriggle the carb out through an access hole in the bottom of the storage compartment. Right now the carb is soaking in solvent. Next step: testing the electric choke. With luck this will be back on the road without too much labor and too many replacement parts- for more than 243 miles, this time. Fingers crossed.

UPDATE: It was indeed a clogged carb, and after some time soaking in solvent the carb was returned to the scooter, and after a fresh battery charge it started right up.

1975 Suzuki T500 R

The Suzuki T500 was the first really successful big-bore two stroke twin on the market. Producing 47HP at 7,000 RPM, and capable of speeds of 110-120MPH, it could reportedly outrun a lot of 500cc and 650cc bikes. It was also noted for how smoothly it ran- especially when compared to 500cc single cylinder thumpers. The T500 was, and is, a tremendously reliable bike, with few reported problems. If you can find one today you can probably get it running without too much difficulty.

This one found its way to Barry's last week, and is about to undergo a complete restoration- the results of which will be documented here, of course!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

2007 Suzuki DR-Z 400 - for sale

The new DR-Z 400s list for $6099. How about a like new, 2007 DR-Z 400 with fewer than 100 miles on it- for $3500? A fantastic Enduro or Super Motard with the right tires. Contact Barry at the email address in the upper right hand section of this page.

UPDATE: It's out the door and heading up North.

Old School Chopper

Young friend Chris is working on restoring this classic... slowly ;-) But with summer almost here he'll have a lot more time to work on it.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Ural Motorcycle and Sidecar

Back in 1939, of the eve of WWII, the Russians cloned the BMW R71 motorcycles and sidecars. Sixty years later, and they're still building the same bike... though not to the same standard. Until recently, that is. Now you can buy a Ural that's been pretty much rebuilt, with new front disc brakes, better wiring, and other improvements.

This particular Ural was just visiting, and not in for repair.

CB350: Progress Report

The CB350 last seen here a few weeks ago has now been reassembled. Still has some cosmetic details to be attended to, and a bit more engine tuning, but it's almost ready for the road.

As a reminder, here's the bike as we last saw it:

Monday, May 4, 2009

1998 Yamaha Factory YZ250

Motocross fans will recognize this bike that Barry campaigned for several years. It's a 1998 Yamaha YZ250- but not just any YZ250. This is Tim Ferry's Team Noleen factory race bike that he ran
in five rounds of the 1998 250cc Supercross series. It's seen some hard riding since then, including a good many top place finishes. Currently retired and awaiting a complete rebuild, it'll be back on the racing circuit again before too long.