Switching Controls, Clocks, Locks, And Switches

This week, I started transferring the switches and controls across to the now-empty handlebars on what used to be Bruiser.

Here are the nearly bare handlebars before I started:

And the switches and controls I am transferring across:

First up, I removed the instrument cluster/clock assembly (ignition switch, instrument lights, speedo and tacho) and put it aside.

Next I removed the choke cable from the carburetor.


With the choke assembly off, I removed the clutch cable and left switch block connectors.


Removed the clutch lever and left switch block from Eric’s old handlebar and installed on the other one.


Fitted the clutch cable at both ends.


Time to remove the throttle cables.



Disconnected the right switch block cables and removed the throttle and right switch block assembly.


The switch block was held on with a single screw that has seen better days. I swapped the screws out from the spare and replaced them with the damaged screw when re-fitting them on the other handlebar.


Slowly building up the controls on the recipient frame, while more and more of Eric is going in the spare parts box.


The carburetor was next to come out.


The left grip had always looked a little out of place. I have another throttle assembly with a matching one in the spares box if I remember correctly though.

The left end of Eric’s handlebar is totally bare now!

To get the brake line out, I had to remove the front badge plate.


Removed the handlebar clamps next, as the headlight/indicator mount is held down by the handlebar.


I decided to remove Eric’s handlebar altogether.

I left the indicators on the headlight mount for now, although I’ll probably dismantle them and give the exposed surfaces a good clean with electrical contact cleaner before reassembly.

The front mounting plate needed to come off the forks before the brake line culd be removed.

While I had access to it, I removed the steering lock.


I tested the lock with the ignition key to make sure it still worked and that it was definitely a match.


Onto the complete frame it went!


I removed the master brake cylinder and Eric’s handlebar was free at last.


I put it with on the shelf next to the seat and spare red tank.

I finished removing the brake line.

Then I replaced the banjo bolt in the front brake assembly.

I fitted the mounting bracket to the front forks on the complete frame, making sure the brake line and wiring loom had been passed through it  during assembly.


Connected the brake line to the front brake assembly, ready to bleed fresh fluid through.

I tightened up the handlebar mounts again and called it a day.

Reassembly will continue this week, Hopefully the right side muffler will arrive soon too!


Scarlet Gets Some Attention At Last


I haven’t posted  any updates on Scarlet in a while for personal reasons. This doesn’t mean I’ve done nothing with her in the last 12 months, however!

Although I haven’t written about it previously, I have replaced the head gasket, adjusted the valve clearances, replaced the regulator/rectifier with a brand new aftermarket one and replaced the clutch friction plates and finally filled her up with fresh oil..

I also took my usual amount of photos as I went along, so these will be added in future posts.

Last weekend I decided to try starting Scarlet again, since she hasn’t been run for over a year.

This of course meant swapping the known working battery back from Eric again.20170129_093745 20170129_093805 20170129_094200

I had to open the cover to Eric’s tool compartment, as the top of it was  blocking the battery.


Scarlet’s looking great but the battery that was in her didn’t seem to be working.


I pulled the battery out to see if it was the problem.

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This is not a healthy-looking battery!


Swapped out for the one that I know works well enough to start Eric.

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Off with the seat to check wiring connections.

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Nothing obviously wrong here, so off came the tank to check further along the wiring loom.


Fuel tap to the OFF position


Disconnect the fuel line…


Pop off the left side cover…


And finally remove the tank!


Here’s the aftermarket regulator/rectifier. I’m not sure if it could be the source of the electrical problems.


Also looks like this clip has seen better days!


I reconnected the original reg/rec temporarily to see if there was any improvement. No change to the lack of neutral light, even after several kicks of the starter.


I figured I may as well at least replace the cable clip, so I grabbed the spare one from Bruiser.


It looked a little thirsty, so a squirt of Inox was applied and the residue wiped off with a rage.

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I gave her a bit more of a polish with Inox and found the summer heat was getting a little too intense, so I put her back together and called it a day.

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I’ll need to spend some time checking over the electrical troubleshooting section and wiring diagram again. I have some ideas on where to start, so will test my theories before next week’s update.

Double Trouble – Sylvie Is Road-Legal and Jack Suffers From Oil Attachments

I got a day permit for Sylvie on Thursday and she rides very nicely. She also passed the roadworthy inspection first go!

Jack has had some power issues at higher speeds lately, that were at first suspected to be due to a slack chain. After the chain had a roadside adjustment, the issues continued despite the chain tension being confirmed correct.

A little research in the CBF250 workshop manual in the section covering the clutch revealed what I already knew – that the manual was badly translated to English from Brazilian Portuguese! Here’s an excerpt:

•Viscosity and the level of engine oil directly affect the functioning of the clutch. It is not recommended the use of attachments.
If the clutch not decouples or if the motorcycle vibrates with the clutch decoupled, inspect the engine oil
and its level before make reservations in the system of clutch.

Further research in the troubleshooting flowchart confirmed this diagnosis.


I could only conclude that “attachments” was meant to say “additives” in the context of engine oil, so I asked Jack’s current owner about the service history since I sold him the bike.

After a few answers I suspected dodgy oil had been added at some point, possibly one with additives designed for car engines. Ah ha! The elusive “attachments” might be the culprit after all…

I checked and topped up the oil in Sylvie this morning as it was below the low mark, then  swapped the one working battery from Sylvie to Jack, started Jack and warmed up the oil.

After raising Jack onto the the main/centre stand I’d invested in when I owned Jack, removing the sump plug was relatively easy.


I removed the dipstick.



The oil drained pretty quickly after being heated to operating temperature.


I realised when refitting the sump plug that tightening it to the specified 30 N.m torque might prove difficult, as the sump plug has a 12 mm head and the only 12 mm sockets I own are 1/4″ drive and 3/8″ drive. The 1/2″ torque wrench I own only goes up to 26 N.m and  I don’t own a 1/2″ drive 12 mm socket.

Thankfully, the onboard toolkits for the CBF250 have a spark plug spanner that has an outside diameter of approximately 21 mm at the spark plug end and an inside diameter of 12 mm at the other end. As it happened, I do have 1/2″ drive 21 mm sockets, so after a short delay the sump plug was tightened to the specified torque using this combination.



I wiped the excess oil off to make spotting any oil leakage easier.


I then replaced the oil with bog-standard 20W-50 (as per service manual specs)


I’m pleased to report that full power is back at all normal road speeds with no shuddering!

When pushed a tad further, there’s still a little slipping so I’ll be ordering and fitting a set of clutch discs by way of thanks for the loan of both Jack and also Sylvie’s rego costs for the first three months – a friend like that is worth the effort!

Finally, I swapped the battery back into Sylvie so I can ride her until the new battery arrives next week. Hopefully the speedo housings will arrive soon too!