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Keep a Mechanic on Speed Dial: Tips for Motorcycle-Repair Projects

Guest Post by: Joe Hurley

Clear out the garage, break out your grease-stained work shirt and settle in — it’s time to restore your bike. Whether rebuilding the engine, replacing a spark plug or simply changing a tire, working on a motorcycle requires your full attention. You may be the only one turning the wrench, but you’re not alone as you fix up your bike. Take advantage of tools, resources and tips to help you as you fix up your ride. With the right help, you’ll be turning heads as you cruise down the road on your self-improved motorcycle.

Shop Online

Before you start stripping bolts and loosening screws, you’ll need the replacement parts necessary to restore your engine. Previous generations were limited to the auto store and scrap yard to search for new parts, but the 21st century brought a whole-new parts dealer: the Internet. Filled with platforms to find great deals on any make an model, online shopping reduces the hassle and expense of finding your motorcycle. If looking for Honda motorcycle parts, check Craigslist for deals in your area, eBay to find a steal through an auction or dozens of online stores dedicated to find any part you need.

Take Pictures

It seems that the laws of personal vehicle mechanics dictate that a disassembled part will not be properly reassembled on the first attempt. This apparent reality has frustrated ambitious motorists since the dawn of internal combustion, but technology affords us a backup to the mental picture we take before embarking on a restoration project. Take pictures as you disassemble parts. When it’s time to put your bike back together, a digital copy will fill in the assembly holes that your memory can’t.

Use Resources

The thrill of taking on a restoration project is enough to make any self-taught mechanic lock himself in the garage until the engine is running in peak form. Motorcycle repair isn’t easy, and pride can deter eager riders from hitting the road.

Instead of sentencing yourself to an afternoon of frustration, collect a diverse set of references in case the repair (or engine) sputters. Online motorcycle forums contain first-person discussions of projects, and you may be able to gain insights from fellow riders that have completed similar projects. Pick a local mechanic’s brain before starting your project. His insight could save you time and money, and a phone call could save you hours of struggle.

Clean the Bike

Most of the time, a motorcycle-restoration project is meant to improve the bikes performance, and a well-running engine is best coupled with an sleek body. Cap off your restoration project with wax and polish. Not only will your bike look great, the combination of a better performing engine and a made-up appearance will give your motorcycle that fresh off-the-lot feeling again.

chrome-plated engine of motorcycle

Authored By:
Joe Hurley ‘Jumpin’ Joe has been working on motorcycles since he was 12 years old and writing about them since he was old enough to ride.

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6 Comments

  1. bikermonkey

     /  December 28, 2012

    Great post! I follow everyone of them, especially taking pictures as I do things. Thank you for sharing. BikerMonkey.

    Reply
  2. bikermonkey

     /  December 28, 2012

    Reblogged this on bikermonkey and commented:
    This is a great post! We are coming up on the time to turn those wrenches and make any changes you want to do before the 2013 season goes in to 6th gear! Personally, I follow every tip listed in this post, very nice job.

    Reply
  3. Nice article and great tips. I don’t personally restore bikes or even work on them, but I used to work on my cars when I was younger, so this is all interesting stuff, BikerMonkey. 🙂

    Reply

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