Starting Scarlet Again And Swapping Sylvie’s Handlebar

This week, I decided it was well past time Scarlet got started again, so I filled up a fuel can and topped up her tank.

After this, I cranked the kickstarter a few times. She still starts, but there’s a definite flooding problem with her carburetor…

…so I added a carburetor rebuild to the list of tasks for Scarlet.

Having bent it into a close approximation of the right shape, I decided to have another go at fitting Sylvie’s replacement handlebar.

Although the shape isn’t perfect, it’s not too bad…

Definitely looks better than the old one!

While giving attention to the handlebar, I remembered that the indicators have been a bit intermittent. I decided to have a look at the left switch block.

A good blast of this should help!

I gave the switch a good treating with the cleaning spray and made sure to move it into all positions.

After the spray had evaporated, I tested the indicators and they seemed a bit better. I then turned on the heated grips for a few minutes.

While waiting for the grips to warm up, I removed the left bar end weight.

With the left grip heated, I was able to twist it loose from the J B Weld with a bit of effort.

Rather than risk breaking the throttle cylinder by twisting the right grip, I opted to remove the right side controls all at once.

Off came the bar end weight, then I unscrewed the right switch block, split it and slid it as far along the handlebar as it would go.

I unscrewed the mounting bolts from the front master brake cylinder and right mirror and returned to the left side.

The left mirror and control box for the heated grips were next.

Unscrewed the bolts and off they came!

I removed the left switch block next.

Looks like a dead spider in there! That can’t have been good for the switch mechanism?

There’s a bit of corrosion in there that should be cleaned out when I have more time.

I had to remove the choke cable from its collar to get the switch block off.

I kept all the loose parts nearby so they could be found for reassembly.

The caps over the handlebar mounting bolts came off next.

I’ll order some more, as this one isn’t really going to do much once it goes back on!

The J B Weld came off the chromed handlebar without too much effort, so the choke lever collar came off next.


I removed the rest of the caps.

These are only chromed plastic, so I’ll order a new set.

Off came the handlebar mounts.

The old handlebar just before removal.

With the mounts off, I maneuvered the handlebar out of its remaining cable ties.

Replacement handlebar above the old one for comparison.

Installation was a reversal of the removal process.

I fitted the bar ends and took a break for dinner.

After dinner, I went out and mixed up some J B Weld to hold the left grip steady on the handlebar.

My stepdaughter wanted to help, so I got her to hold the  heated grip. She was very interested in how it went onto the handlebar!

I only applied a thin coat of JB Weld to the handlebar this time.

After we put the grip on, my stepdaughter want to climb on the bike!

I got her to hold the bar end weight in place while I screwed it on.

As the bike was on the main stand, I let her sit on it again and told her how to start it this time. She really got a kick out of that!

After my little helper had gone inside, I re-fitted the protective caps.

Finally I turned the heated grips on for a few minutes to help start the curing process of the J B Weld.

After riding today, the replacement bar has made a big difference.

That’s all until next week!



Sylvie’s Mirrors Arrive After All, And Erica Gets The Spares

This week I contacted the seller of the mirrors I’d ordered for Sylvie as they still hadn’t arrived. The seller authorised a refund, and the mirrors turned up the next day!

Of course, I decided to fit them immediately after waiting so long for them to arrive.

First up, I had to remove the spare mirrors.

Here are both the new mirrors and the spares I had been using on Sylvie.

Sylvie with no mirrors, ready for the new ones to be fitted.

And with the new mirrors.

Since it was night-time, I decided to get some shots with the lights on.


And a look from the front (excuse the background mess)

Finally, I headed to the shed and ticked off another item on Sylvie’s list!

Sylvie’s new mirrors freed up the spare mirrors, so I took a last couple of photos of Erica without mirrors before fitting them.

Voila! Mirrors at last!

I ticked off my first item from Erica’s list since it was written up.

And finally, a shot of both lists.

Next week, I’ll be seeing what else can be taken off the lists.

The current plan is to try finding the cause of the electrical issues I’ve had with Scarlet and Erica.

Meet Rosie, The KLR650

Rosie is a 2004 Kawasaki KLR650.

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She was originally bought by my ex for spare parts, as she rides the same model. We ended up going halves as Rosie was in good enough shape to register and ride with only minor repairs. When my ex and I went our separate ways I arranged to pay out the other half.

Rosie came with the following modifications when she was bought:

Thermo-Bob cooling kit.

Custom dash with car accessory socket, a manual switch for the radiator fan and a “mystery switch”:

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She also has an aftermarket Corbin seat, which is a bit lower in the rider position than the genuine ones, and quite comfortable.

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Bark Busters and Oxford Heaters heated hand grips.

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Since becoming sole owner of Rosie, I have done the following work on her:

Attempted to replace the stator only to find it was from a different model KLR650. I replaced the oil filter and did an oil change instead since they needed doing and the oil had been drained anyway.

Replaced the rear bracket on the left switch assembly as the mirror mount was broken.

Fitted a Happy Trails centre stand, which definitely makes working on her easier even though it’s a fair bit of effort to get her on it!

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Replaced the battery. This was the old one:

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The new one hasn’t been keeping a charge, as I haven’t been riding Rosie much lately.

Earlier this  week, I removed it and put it on to charge.

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While I was working on her, I decided to remove the now-redundant registration label holder (no longer issued in the ACT since July last year)

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Now that I’ve removed it, I’m thinking a replacement rear mudguard might be in order.2014-07-16 19.22.59

Next up is overhauling the carburetor!

Nix’ Noticeably Nicer Nature, Securing and Sprucing Up Scarlet

On Friday lunchtime, I visited the local bike wreckers again and left with a set of replacement mirrors, a spare left indicator and a seat in a reasonable state of repair.

I fitted the seat and right mirror immediately and noticed a considerable improvement in how she rode. If she has a personality, it seems to have improved dramatically since she has been registered and got some attention.

On Saturday I removed her damaged and mismatched right fairing.

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the damage wasn’t that major,so I’ll give it the same repair treatment I gave the other fairing panels when I have time.

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The replacement right mirror mount needs a good clean to remove the writing the wrecker left on it and possibly a bit of a touch-up on the paint.

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The mirror itself is fine, although also in need of a good clean.

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The left mirror mount is in much better condition than the old one.

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The mirror housing is a bit more scratched, so I may end up putting the original one back on.

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Although it looks repaired, the original right mid-fairing is definitely in better condition than the matte black one!

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While it has a few small tears in the pillion section, the replacement seat is also a definite improvement! I’ll probably re-use the strap from the original one once I can get the screws out that are holding it on. I broke one screwdriver bit attempting to remove it before I realised the threads on the screws holding it on seem to have been deliberately crushed at a certain point – possibly at the factory to prevent them from unscrewing from vibration.

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All up, she seems to look a bit happier.

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The left indicator is still yet to be replaced, I ran out of weekend so it can wait!

In between removing Nix’ right mid-fairing and waiting for the J-B Weld to set on the original, I worked on Scarlet.

First I fitted her new battery and swapped the right side of the toolbox with the one I bought for Eric, as this one has a lid.

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While it’s authentic for Scarlet’s year of manufacture I’ll probably replace it with Bruiser’s eventually, as that one can be latched and opened with a motorcycle key or screwdriver.

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Despite the mounting bolts being round and devoid of screwdriver slots, I managed to remove the broken helmet holder lock from Scarlet and replace it with the one from Bruiser. This meant that both of the locks fitted to her now unlock with the same key I use for her ignition switch.

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I had been bothered by the amount of rust on her handlebars for a while, as well as the mismatched handgrips after replacing the throttle assembly.

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I swapped them with Eric’s but forgot to get a photo during daylight, so took one tonight instead.

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Since all three of the locks fitted on Scarlet now matched, I decided to try my luck with fitting Bruiser’s steering lock, as Scarlet didn’t have one at all when I got her. After quite a bit of WD40 and cleaning out of the lock mechanism with fine wire, I discovered that Bruiser’s steering lock didn’t have a broken piece of key in it after all, just a lot of dirt and grit. I managed to clean the mechanism up enough so that it worked with after applying a little “elbow grease” to the key.

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Since this will be the final lock unless I replace the seat cowl, I tested it after fitting.
Left is locked, right is unlocked again.

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All up, not a bad weekend’s work – Nix and Scarlet now only have one major and one minor issue each.

Nix still appears to be slowly leaking either fuel or oil (relatively minor) and the rear shock needs adjusting or replacing (fairly major in terms of comfort).

Scarlet’s right front indicator still doesn’t work (relatively minor) and she’s still running too rich to idle without stalling (fairly major).

I went to ALDI this evening and found a special on Brasso and Silvo, so I grabbed a bottle of each. Once I get the problems above sorted, I’ll get onto de-rusting and polishing any bare metal or chrome I can find!