Organising The Pegboard And Starting On Khaleesi

This week, I continued organising the shed so I could get to my spanners and made another timelapse video in the process.

Here’s the shed from outside before I started.

A better view of the organised pegboard.

I found a few stray tools that don’t belong on the pegboard – some JIS screwdrivers that belong in the toolbox and a cheap set of spanners I don’t use on vehicles due to poor quality.

This was the mess on the floor in front of the bikes.

I had left a space for this spanner on the pegboard, as I knew it was somewhere nearby!

Much better!

Sockets in the box of bolts? This is what I end up doing when it starts raining unexpectedly!

This bolt had escaped the box altogether!

Another socket out of place.

With the wayward sockets out of the bolt box I finally was able to close it again.

The stray socket was reunited with is siblings.

More random bits and pieces on the floor.

The bolt box was relocated to the bench without losing the rest of its contents and the side-cutters and sockets left on top of it until they find a more permanent place.

The inside of the shed was slightly more easy to get to again at last!

I even looked a little less cluttered from outside compared to when I started!

With the shed more organised, I started looking more closely at the damage on Khaleesi.

The plates below the front sprocket came off first.

First was a single JIS screw that needed my large JIS driver to remove.

The other mounting bolts were 8mm.

Once the plates were removed, I disconnected the Neutral switch lead connector and the 8mm mounting bolts.

With the bolts removed, the larger part of the cover came straight off.

The part that had broken off was held on by a 10mm nut.

The nut wasn’t all that was holding it in place though. The oil seal around the selector shaft was badly bent out of shape and unusable.

With the oil seal out, it still wouldn’t move!

Some gentle persuasion with a ball peen hammer and a small pry bar soon took care of that.

I don’t own a MIG or TIG welder and I’m not very skilled with my arc/inverter stick welder yet. I also don’t have any aluminium arc welding rods, so I didn’t attempt to weld these aluminium alloy parts back together!

Fortunately, it didn’t look like there was any internal damage other than to the gasket.

I put all the parts and tools aside on a clean scrap of cardboard in front of the bike lift so they are out of the way until the new cover goes on.

Finally, I covered up the remainder of the external shift mechanism with a shop rag.

I’m waiting on a replacement cover, sprocket and chain from Khaleesi’s owner before I can finish work on her, so that’s all for this week.

I’ll continue sorting the bike shed next week. Hopefully some of the parts for Sylvie I’m waiting on will arrive too!


A New Charger, Scarlet Still Floods And Testing A Scratch Repair Kit On Erica’s Spare Tank

I picked a couple of new things from Aldi this week to keep me busy while I wait for a replacement chain and sprocket set for Sylvie.

While the faithful old trickle charger has served me well over the last few years, the fact that it’s switched to trickle mode hasn’t always been an accurate indicator of a battery that’s ready for use. With Scarlet’s battery on it over the last week, I decided to switch the charger over to Erica to help with the electrical troubleshooting.

Here’s a better view of the new charger.

Some assembly was required,

No tools were needed to put it together, so assembly only took about a minute.

The clamps seemed fairly sturdy and the colour-coded connector and nuts were a nice touch.

After following the instructions to make sure the new charger was in motorcycle mode and checking Scarlet’s battery, the new charger indicated that Scarlet’s battery was in fact charged.

In addition to the bright green LED, the outer box of the the battery symbol flashes to indicate a fully charged battery.

I decided to try the new charger on Erica, as the trickle charger was on slow charge mode. It shows 12.2 Volts but the electronics were clever enough in motorcycle mode to show that this battery still needed more charging.

The clamps were a little trickier to connect to a motorcycle battery still installed on a bike but held quite securely once positioned correctly.

After a few minutes, the voltage had increased slightly. I’ll see how this battery goes over the next week or so.

I turned on Scarlet’s ignition but no lights were working, so I started her up and found she started easily but stalled without choke and was dumping fuel fairly quickly. In order to confirm the source of the fuel, I moved Scarlet out onto some scrap cardboard on the lawn.

Sure enough, after running the motor for a few minutes a puddle started to form.

You can see exactly how fast it was coming out in the video below.

There was quite the puddle of fuel after only a short run.

After investigation, I confirmed the fuel was coming from the fuel hose at the bottom of the carburetor. Time for a rebuild or to swap out the one on Erica, it seems…

I also noticed the spring that connects the brake pedal to the brake light switch had come off, so I decided to fix that. The first thing I noticed was that the switch was sitting way too high up.

I lowered the switch as far as it would go, then reconnected the spring.

Then I adjusted the switch height and tested it by pushing down the brake pedal with my hand and checking the switch was pulled down as expected.

I took the opportunity to get a nice photo of Scarlet from the right before putting her away.

I moved the cardboard into the shed before putting Scarlet back, so I can hopefully catch any further spills before they hit the floor.

I decided to test the scratch removal kit on Ericas spare tank (the black one). I wasn’t expecting miracles from it, as it”s only really intended for minor scratch removal.

Here’s how the tank looked before using the scratch remover.

And here’s how it looked after.

To be honest, it just looks a bit more polished! I haven’t given up on it completely though, I’ll see how it goes on the minor scratches on Sylvie’s tank at some stage.

Next entry will be fitting Sylvie’s new chain and sprockets.

Providing there are no problems with Erica’s carburetor, I’ll probably do another  CB250RS carburetor swap and/or rebuild shortly after that before returning to electrical fault-finding.


CB250RS Parts Transplant – A New Fuel Tap, A Name, Kick-Starting, And Packing Up Parts

Last week, my new fuel tap arrived!

While it fits perfectly, I didn’t fit the tank just yet, as I want to repaint it first.

I’ve also decided on a name for the resulting bike after the parts transplant.

As it contains parts from Eric and from Bruiser, I decided to smash the names together and came up with a few possibilities:

ERI-SER, BRU-RIC and ER-SER were all briefly considered before thought of ERIC-ER, as the bike’s working parts are more Eric than Bruiser.

This quickly became Erica, because the gender of inanimate objects is completely arbitrary anyway!

Heres a video of Erica’s first start after the surgery

After running Erica for a while, I decided to swap out the rear duck-tail fairing.

The original seat from Bruiser with the blue duck-tail fairing

Scarlet’s original duck-tail on Eric’s old seat.

I removed the very dodgy self-tapping wood screws I’d only ever intended to use temporarily on Eric’s seat

Bruiser’s old seat still had the original mounting screws, so off came the duck-tail.

Onto the better seat  and a close-up of the mounting screws.

A couple of vanity shots of Erica with the black tank still fitted until the blue one is repainted.

With the obligatory full shots of Erica out of the way, I stacked the spare mudguard and duck-tail fairing next to the very dented spare tank.

I decided the seat could go with them.

Looking at the frame, I decided there was still too much on it, so I set about stripping it down completely.

The ignition coil and High Tension lead were the first candidates.

The mounting posts shared with and the mounting plate for the Regulator/Rectifier were next.

The wiring loom and rear brake light switch followed soon after.

The gear shift lever and mounting pin came next.

At this point, I decided to start bagging things up and labelling them to prevent further damage and in case I decide to part them out.

I moved on to the wiring clips.

The kickstand seemed like the next logical step…


…until I realised I needed to take the mounting bracket for the footpeg off to remove it!

With suitable persuasion I was able to convince it, however!

I also removed the swingarm axle in the process, though.

Naturally, I removed the rear shocks and swingarm next.


I replaced the axle in the swingarm so I wouldn’t lose any of the parts.

I noticed the rear brake stay bar was attached with a split pin and bolt at the swingarm end as well, so I removed it and put the bolt back through for safekeeping.

The cylinder head mounting plate and cable clip were next.

The right footpeg and bracket came off fairly easily.

I’m glad I was able to remove the final mounting bolt by hand, as I don’t have an allen wrench this big! It was about 8 mm.

The horn and throttle cable guide came off the front of the frame.

By this stage, I had just the front forks and main stand left to remove.

As I don’t yet own a 30 mm spanner or socket, the main stand was next to come off.
The spring came off very easily without a wheel in the way.

The split pin was easy to remove with a pair of pliers.

The stand itself wasn’t quite so easily removed from the frame!

I got it eventually though.

With the stand removed, I picked up the remainder of the frame.

I found a suitable space for it and put the wheels away behind it

I cleaned up the main stand and its spring with some degreaser and they came up pretty well!

Finally, I started Erica and rode her up the ramp into the shed before stuffing the parts box full and locking up the shed.






Scarlet Gets Her Mojo Back

I’ve been determined to get Scarlet working again, so I decided to have another look at the electrical system.

Of course, the first order of business was to remove the battery

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Before swapping the wiring looms over on Scarlet and Eric, I decided to follow up a suggestion from from a member of the forums, who had mentioned it might be worth replacing Scarlet’s CDI box with a known good one.


I put the battery on to charge for a little while before attempting any electrical troubleshooting.



Remembering that Eric seemed to have no trouble starting, I thought it a fairly safe bet that his CDI was in working order. Off it came!

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Looks pretty serviceable.


Scarlet’s looked ok at first…


…but on closer inspection it didn’t look so good. Scarlet’s old CDI is on the left, the replacement from Eric is on the right.

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There was still a noticeable difference after spraying both sets of terminals with contact cleaner.


As the one on the left seems to have burnt out, it won’t be going on Eric. I may have spare somewhere for when the time comes to start him again.

After fitting the replacement, I had a quick look at the terminals inside the connection block.

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A quick dose of contact cleaner on those before connecting the CDI.


The CDI did the trick. Scarlet started!

There is still a bit of work to do, as none of the lights seem to be working. This is the best progress I’ve made on Scarlet in forever though!

I moved Eric back into the shed and parked Scarlet next to Sylvie.

They look pretty good together.


If I can figure out the rest of the electrical gremlins, Scarlet will be re-registered soon!

My Third Annual Start And/Or Ride A CB250RS Day

For many Australians, today is a day of celebration. For most indigenous Australians, it is a day of mourning.

For me it is both, yet neither.

19 years ago on this day I had the saddest news of my life.

RIP Mum. 

In light of this, January 26th has been my Annual “Start And/Or Ride A CB250RS Day” for the last few years.

Today, I got Eric to start again for the first time this year and confirmed that Scarlet’s battery is still in reasonable condition.

I gave Eric a thorough look over to confirm everything I already knew about that needs attention, and discovered a few things.

The fuel tap leaks when in the Reserve position and drips onto the engine. Not ideal, considering the small tank capacity. This was a new discovery.


While the left muffler is complete, the right one is only a header pipe (hence the exhaust note when starting him). This one was already on the list, and I’ve found a likely aftermarket bolt-on candidate.

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Another known issue -the right side panel is missing, so I borrowed Bruiser’s to cover the battery for now.

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His mirrors are currently on Sylvie, so he’ll get them back when Sylvie’s are replaced.


The fork seals are leaking terribly and the fork oil probably needs changing, or at least topping up. This was another new discovery.

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The front brake master cylinder has no fluid whatsoever and could use a better cover.. While this was on the list, I’d forgotten about it.


The lights don’t seem to work at all, the rear tyre is flat, and last of all the rear of the frame has been chopped by a previous owner who was planning to turn him into a cafe racer or bobber. These are also known issues.

I’m thinking the best course of action at this stage is to remove Bruiser’s engine and transfer Eric’s engine and all the working parts onto Bruiser’s frame.

It’s also way past time I gave Scarlet some attention, so expect more vintage Honda updates in the near future!

Sylvie Gets A Facelift

Yesterday, I spent some time looking over Sylvie to get an idea of how much work she’ll need to be ready for the road.

Visually, there were a few obvious things.


The last rider apparently hit a car at low speed, so there’s quite a bit of cosmetic damage to the front end.


The front fender/mudguard has a chunk missing, the speedo/dash housing is broken, and there is a large opaque spot in the headlight lens


The right mirror was completely shattered, the handlebars and brake lever were quite badly bent, and the right switch/throttle assembly needs replacing as parts of it have snapped off completely.



The rear tyre is badly worn and will need replacing.

As the battery was flat but there was fuel in the tank, I hooked up some jumper leads to my car and pressed the starter button. She obligingly came to life almost immediately!

(Apologies for the video quality, will try to fix this later)

Off came the mirrors.


Next were the protective caps on the handlebar clamps.


I checked under the seat and found a complete original toolkit, although the vinyl tool bag was stating to fall apart.


Off came the handlebars, to check the extent of the bend.



Quite a nasty bend there!



After some concerted effort with a makeshift pipe bender (the metal bar and wooden beams near my front gate), I managed to get the handlebars close to their original shape, so I put them back on and replaced the handgrips, switches, choke/clutch assembly, master brake reservoir and throttle assembly.


A spare set of mirrors later and she’s looking much happier!


The battery is on to charge, so I’ll check it tomorrow evening.

I’ve ordered a replacement rear wheel, so further work will wait until it arrives.

More to come next week!


November’s New Acquisition – Fred’s Fizzer 400

Back in November, I had decided I wasn’t buying any more bikes until I had a shed to work on them in.

I was kidding myself, of course!

Through a thread on my favourite motorcycle forum, I found a 1992 Yamaha FZR400 going cheap. The original pics from the seller showed a bike with half the fairings removed but carefully put aside.

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Carbon fibre exhaust…

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Redline zone starts at 14K. This looks somewhat familiar…

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Tyres look decent and the brakes have been serviced with EBC replacement parts, it seems…

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Fairings in reasonable condition…

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A replacement exhaust manifold was thrown in as well for some reason…

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I contacted the seller and went for a closer look.

After talking with the seller for a while and hearing how much he had enjoyed riding the bike and being filled in on some of its history:

  • The bike had been low-sided at slow speed after the fairings were removed as he’d preferred the look of it naked.
  • He’d made a custom insert for the air filter.
  • He had been planning to replace the exhaust manifold with the spare one (from a different model Yamaha 600) to eliminate the EXUP but never got around to it.
  • Battery had been replaced with a sealed one but was flat as the bike hadn’t been ridden in over a year since the registration had expired.
  • He’d removed the rear mudguard, welded up a fender eliminator and fitted mini LED indicators at front and rear.
  • Tyres and brakes had been replaced shortly before the rego expired
  • He was selling to raise cash towards accessories for a brand new Triumph!

I offered him 10% less than his listed price and we had a deal.

There were a couple of logistical issues with getting the bike to my place:

  • The bike wasn’t running or registered and therefore couldn’t be ridden away.
  • The bike wasn’t Learner & Novice Approved even if it had been running and registered.
  • The extra parts would have been difficult to carry on the bike.
  • My car at the time wasn’t set up for towing a trailer.
  • My trailer wasn’t registered.

Luckily, the seller had a bike trailer and was keen to make room in the garage as he was expecting delivery of his new Triumph the next day, so he delivered it to me!

The mandatory “just bought it” photo:


The next day, I hooked up some jumper leads to the car and gave jump starting a go. I took the opportunity to give the electrical system a quick test as well and was most impressed with the result!

Cut to several months later, I now have a day permit organised to take it for a roadworthy check tomorrow – provided the battery charges enough overnight…

More specifics on the repairs to follow!