Sunday, July 08, 2012

Valencia's 7500 Km Service

Spent yesterday morning in the garage performing Valencia's 7500 Kilometer Service.

Although not called for at this mileage interval, I first checked the valve clearances with the engine "cold", and its good that I did, I found the left side intake valve loose (tightened to .004 in. per spec) and more troubling, found the right side intake valve very tight (.002, which is still within spec but tighter than I prefer, so I made the clearance .004 in.).  The right side exhaust valve was loose as well, so that got tightened down.

I did find a tiny bit of swarf clumped together in the right side valve cover, am hoping it was due to the tight intake valve or just normal engine "break in", we'll see when I check it next time.

Another check called for is the "check adjustment of the wheel bearings".  Well, back when I had my '96 Ural Sportsman Rig: Natasha (I miss her), this would involve also disassembly the wheel hub components and repacking the tapered wheel bearings with fresh grease, a messy but strangely satisfying ritual.  Starting like in 2008, Ural now uses "sealed" wheel bearings, so none of that maintenance is called for now.  Instead, you need to check for wobbling of the wheel while on its respective axle, if any, take the wheel off and:

  • Remove locking ring with special wrench (provided in Ural Tool Kit)
  • Remove bearing retainer with pin wrench from tool kit.
  • Check condition but don't remove the sealed bearing
  • Replace the bearing retainer, tighten down snug (don't back it off as with older units)
  • Secure the bearing retainer down tight.
  • Note: Though I didn't do it, you can apparently carefully pry off the plastic cover on the sealed bearings, apply a small (pearl sized) drop of grease between bearings and replace the plastic cover.
You then remount the wheel, affix mounting nut and check for wobble.  Easy-Peasy, and I only found a very slight wobble in the sidecar wheel, the pusher and front wheels seemed fine.

Fastener checks revealed no loose or missing fasteners, I really love that Ural has started using Nyloc as the type of bolt fastening nuts on their rigs.

Next came the "Inspect the air filter element".  Mine was filthy from all the dusty rides recently though I'd not experienced the "bog down" symptoms others had.  I of course cleaned it out using the K&N cleaner and re-oiled it lightly with the K&N oil.

While replacing the air filter I accidentally nudge the battery and it moved!  Hmmm, that ain't right.  It appears the metal strapping that holds it down had come loose and was lost somewhere on some dirt trail.....bummer.  The tight confines of the battery's location had kept things in place but of course I couldn't leave it that way till I got a replacement!  Two big zip ties later, the battery is nice and secure, awaiting the eventual delivery of the proper hold down straps.

Craig H then showed up at my request, to educate me on proper adjustment of the clutch cable.  I'd felt it was in need of adjustment lately and I was right.  Craig found mine a bit loose and walked me through the procedure.  The key is making sure there's just a tiny bit of play both at the clutch lever and the clutch actuating lever.  NOTE: The below instructions are for my reference, I try to be accurate but as the saying goes: "Your mileage WILL vary".  Check your motorcycle's manual, do some research.  I sure am not the guy one should base wrenching procedures off of.

Doing your adjustments solely at the clutch lever on the handle bar
tighten/loosen things till you have a very slight forward/backward motion 
while grasping the end of the clutch actuating lever above.
(Note: when you pull oh so slightly on the clutch lever, this motion should dissappear)
This slack prevents you "riding the clutch" and damaging it.

Top down view of the clutch lever at handle bar:
Back off the locking screw, and use the knurled knob to tighten/loosen
the slack on the clutch cable.  The end of the cable should be "seated"
into the knurled knob after a couple of pumps of the clutch lever after making adjustments.
(if the silver end cap of the cable remains out, the cable is still loose)

I'd mentioned in the first photo that you needed a bit of forward/backward motion
on the clutch actuating lever.  This translates to the slight gap you see above
between the lever and the clutch lever assembly.  Ensure you have this gap!
It's not a very large gap but this way you know you're clutch cable is not too tight and you're
not riding with the clutch lever "engaged".  When you pull slightly on the lever, your
clutch actuating lever should not move forwards/backwards anymore in terms of "slack"

Further pulling back of the above clutch lever will of course begin to "engage the clutch" and disconnect your engine's flywheel from the drive train in the transmission.  

To my way of thinking, it should be called "Disengaging the clutch" when one holds down the clutch lever, not engaging as the clutch assembly is actually in contact with the engine flywheel normally...hopefully I am being clear on this.  Craig and I then spent perhaps an hour just chatting about our Urals, and basically solving the world's problems as we saw them.....good time.

Wrenching Guru Craig, leaves for home having
educated me once more.....Thanks Craig!

All that remained after a check of the steering head bearings, was the fluids on Valencia.  I changed out the engine oil, transmission and final drive oils even though only the engine oil is called for at this interval.  It's not a lot of oil in the transmission (1 Liter) and the Final Drive only calls for 4 ounces.

All done, tools put away and Valencia buttoned up.  She's good to go now until the next service interval at 10,000 Km.

Note to self:  Time to adjust the clutch again when the "friction zone" spot on the clutch lever moves from just after one starts engaging clutch to closer to the handle bar.


SonjaM said...

Wow, whenever I read of those wrenching adventures, I am glad I have two bikes that don't ask for more than gas, oil, air and the occasional wash.

I'd rather spend my time riding... ;-)

redlegsrides said...

I'd rather be riding as well Sonja but all our conveyances require servicing and I don't really have the inclination to pay someone else to perhaps do the job poorly or if I do trust the mechanic the logistics and costs associated just don't make it worthwhile to me.

Besides, this way I get to know my motorcycles so if they break on the road, I might be able to fix it enough to get home.

No one to blame but me if something goes bad....and that's how I like it. I take care of my motos, they hopefully will get me home each time.

Soon as they build the maintenance-free moro, I'll be there!


redlegsrides said...

Maintenance free Moto, that is.....dang autocorrect on this iPhone.

RichardM said...

I still find it therapeutic to work on the bike. I am in the same camp where I'd rather do it myself than pay someone else to do it wrong...

BeemerGirl said...

I have to agree with you and Richard. I love the idea of working on my own bike and getting to know it. But with the track record of some issues on my other bike, I keep going to the dealer while it is under warranty so that if anything does go wrong it can't b blamed on me. Out of warranty might be a different story.

It's great that you Harv knowledge and help nearby to teach you the things you haven't experienced yet. Good friends.

redlegsrides said...

Beemergirl, Valencia is under warranty but doing services is something that wont invalidate it so I do them.

The recent clutch replacement would not have been covered as its considered a wear item and besides, it was my fault.

As to having knowledge, I know enough to be dangerous with tools....its having wrenching friends which has save me time and again.


BeemerGirl said...

I'm guessing your dealer is easy to talk with. I haven't had problems with mine. But they have told me stories in which the mother company has refused to service something under warranty because they didn't believe someone was performing their service on their own, even with receipts.

Your clutch on the other hand...impressive. In both how you did it, and the repair. ;)