Feb 082010

Monday: I decided to strip down and clean the pistons on the front brake callipers as they had some dirt and light rust around the exposed edge of the pistons. I popped the pistons pout easily with my airline from the right calliper and cleaned them with some 1500 paper and then a polish with some white diamond. Smothered them in new fluid and the popped in easily. The left calliper was a different matter, the pistons were seized in place and would not move. I couldn’t rotate them or pop them out even with 120psi. Eventually I decided as they were seized I would take them out with a grip wrench and replace them. They eventually came out but obviously I damaged them removing them, I found some quite deep rusting that had held them in the calliper. The calliper itself is fine. I have ordered two new pistons and seals and they should be here later in the week. I then went on and cleaned all the grease and rubbish off the air cleaner housing and also the front brake pipes and I repainted the cross over pipe unions.

A busy rest of the week doing other things and the rain prevented me working on the bike for the only day I had free. Hopefully no rain next week and I will get more done.

Jan 302010

Whilst in the UK last week and early this week I managed to be a set of slightly used exhausts from a 2002 Valkyrie with the piggies cut. They are in perfect condition and only cost £175. I also got a mountain of other small items like anti-seize compound stainless nuts and bolts, fuse box and the npt connectors for the electronic fuel shut-off. I also had the cam end covers engraved with Valkyrie to add a bit of bling.

Thursday: I picked up some cable for the lighting and fuel shut off and some conduit to run it all in when I was in Gandia getting the car its annual safety check. This afternoon the courier arrived with the exhausts from the UK, I used Jack Neale Transport again as I was pleased with everything he did when he brought the bike over and later the lift. I then made a tool to strip the forks down, finally collected the re-painted front mudguard (I am really pleased with the quality of the paint job that he did).  I removed the disc’s from the wheels so they are ready for polishing and had a general tidy up in the storeroom so that I can get to all the parts.

Friday: I had a few other non Valk jobs to do today. But I did manage to clean up a few bits and pieces and do some more painting on some others.

Saturday: Spent the day doing more cleaning and re-painting. The front brake callipers were very heavily encrusted with dirt and brake dust. Brake cleaner didn’t do much good but barbecue cleaner worked wonders on them and they are now gleaming.  That’s it for this week as I will be riding out with my friends tomorrow.

Jan 152010

Finally after nearly two weeks of wind rain and cold weather the sun shone so I could go back to working in the car port. Yesterday the pipes for my rear air shocks arrived and so today I removed the old rusty fender struts and replaced them with the ones I got from Pinwall and I installed the shocks. I still have to complete the plumbing as I am undecided as to where to fit the top up valve.  I removed the old rusty throttle cables as well. I dropped the front forks off at my village motorcycle shop for him to do the seals for me as he has the Honda tool.

I won’t get much done for the next 2 weeks as I am off to visit friends and family in the UK. I do have a few bits waiting at my sons for collection such as stainless bolts to replace a lot of the rusty allen bolts, and a new air cleaner as they are much cheaper in the UK than here.

Jan 022010

Monday: No work done today but Fedex finally turned up with the new rocker cover that I bought before Christmas on eBay in the UK. It is perfect and looks brand new and with it was a second hand chrome oil filter cover and that again is in perfect condition.

Tuesday: Spent the morning in the workshop and finished polishing the mounting brackets for the master cylinders and the top triple tree. In the afternoon I swapped over the left rocker cover for the new one received yesterday and refitted the front foot pegs and the gear selector after cleaning. I removed the air cleaner box and then started doing the de-smog conversion. I have ripped everything out now all I need to do is cap the vacuum lines and put the core plugs in the block. I need to buy another one as I seem to have misplaced it!! 🙁 Unfortunately the chrome oil filter cover that I bought doesn’t fit the Valkyrie only the Goldwing still it was only £5, I’ll put it back on eBay.

Wednesday: When I was out shopping I picked up another core plug to complete the de-smogging and some moly grease for when I re-assemble the back wheel.

Saturday: I installed the core plugs and capped the two vacuum ports with the Red-eye caps. I am glad that I bought a new petcock vacuum tube for the petcock from Red-eye when I bought the caps, as the old one was perished and just snapped when I went to remove it. I re-installed the rear brake pedal and master cylinder after cleaning and replacing the pedal. I replaced the right rocker cover with a second hand one I bought of eBay some while ago. The postman delivered the electric fuel shut off valve so I have had a look at where to mount that and it looks like where some of the smog pieces were mounted under the air cleaner will be suitable.

Dec 202009

Monday: Heavy rain all day and so no work in the workshop or on the Valk.

Tuesday: Spent some of the day in the workshop polishing the triple tree as I wasn’t happy with the results from last week. The photo shows before and after the polishing.

I also have a chrome cover to fit below the trees and so the grotty finish here doesn’t matter. I also did some more painting of parts. I collected the front mudguard from the painters as he wasn’t confident with fitting the pinstripes in exactly the correct place.

Wednesday: No power and no water due to the weather and so no work done today. I took the front mudguard to a local sign writing firm and they will fit the pinstripes.

Thursday: More cleaning and polishing of pieces. I did the clutch master cylinder, the photo shows the brake master cylinder before polishing and the clutch master cylinder after.

They were both in the same condition and so the brake one will look similar when I have finished it. I have new covers for them and so have not bothered polishing those.

Friday: Collected the mudguard from the sign writers and delivered it back to the painters. It should be finished next week. I also bought some special paint stripper to get the rest of the lacquer off the triple trees and the master cylinder mounting brackets.

Saturday: Stripped the lacquer off the top triple tree and the master cylinder clamps. All very well polished underneath, it was just the corroded lacquer making them look dull, they should just need a trip to the buffing wheels and not need any rubbing down. Polished the front brake master cylinder, it needed a lot of rubbing down first but now  not much more to polish. That’s it for this week and I doubt I’ll do much next week with Christmas just around the corner.

Dec 132009

Monday:  I didn’t do anything to the bike still recovering from flu and the Christmas Fair on Sunday. The postman delivered the sand blasting gun from the UK so that I can de-rust some of the non-chromed brackets prior to re-painting. He also delivered the chromed frame hanger covers and the triple tree cover from F6Ecke in Germany from the German VRCC.  These are great pieces of bling from another Valk owner who puts you on trust to get the parts and then pay him. I am looking forward to starting to put things on the Valk rather than taking them off. My storage room is getting full of pieces.

Tuesday: It is a Bank Holiday here in Spain today and so there will be no post delivery. I got some work done today. For the first time I have started re-fitting things to the Valk. I fitted the new left rear indicator but in doing so I found that the right side captive nut in the cover wasn’t so I will have to do an epoxy repair on this rather than buy a new cover.

I drained the fluid from the front brakes and the clutch so that I can remove the master cylinders for polishing. I removed the front wheel and again found that the spindle came out easily as it was properly lubricated. I removed the forks so that I can polish them, the speedo and rev counter were next. The speedo and rev counter mounting brackets are corroded on the inside so I will have to sort those out. I don’t have a socket large enough to get the triple trees off for polishing so I will have to borrow one from Ken. I couldn’t undo the black plastic clips that hold the cables to the handle bars and so have asked how to do that on the VRCC technical forum.

Wednesday: After reading the advice from the friendly guys on the main VRCC board I got the cable clips undone easily on the handlebars without breaking any of them. I now have the front end completely stripped including the triple trees so now I can look at starting to do some polishing on the master cylinders, forks and triple trees. I took the top off the air cleaner just to check the state of the filter and this is what I found

Dirty air filter

Dirty air filter

I suspect it is the original from 1996 / 17,000 miles ago. This was surprising given the mechanical state of everything else that I have found on the bike. The cosmetic condition is what has been the problem to date. I suspect that it might even run a little better with a new filter.

Thursday: Nothing removed from the bike today. Spent the day in the workshop sand blasting and cleaning bits ready for painting. I started on the lower triple tree with wet & dry paper and am pleased with the results so far, a bit more work is needed before I can put it on the buffing wheels. The postman delivered the replacement switch housings, I was / am going to polish these but they are really good without.

Friday: Put rust curing paint on the inside of some of the rusty chrome parts and then painted them with black smooth hamerite. The outsides have polished up fine. DHL finally arrived with the progressive air shocks. Unfortunately the pipes have been crimped either in postage from the seller to my son of from him to me so I am going to have to get some new ones, hopefully they won’t be too expensive. Waiting for progressive to tell me how much. If you live in Spain don’t ever get anything delivered by DHL, allegedly for two days my street (built 30+ years ago) didn’t exist, then today when I had given up hope he drove straight to the door!!

Saturday: Did some more cleaning and painting of pieces and also polished the lower triple tree. Started with 240 grit wet and dry paper as it was that bad and ended at 1500 grit before putting it on the buffing wheel. It was a dirty job but the result is worthwhile.

Dec 062009

Not a good start to the week as I have got flu and lost my voice so nothing will be done for a few days.

Postman came on Tuesday with the running lights that I got off eBay last week. They look great, now I now need to decide where to mount them and look at getting some brackets for them. The Progressive shocks were delivered to my son in the UK and he is going to send them on in the next couple of days.

I still haven’t managed to shake this flu off and so nothing got done this week. I am going to make a concerted effort next week to get everything off and to the chromers.

Nov 292009

On Monday the postman didn’t deliver anything and I didn’t manage to get anything done to the bike.

Overnight Monday to Tuesday I lost a bid on eBay UK for a set of rebuilt polished forks, I set my price but someone was prepared to pay more. I did, however, win some bling from eBay US in the form of a pair of Chrome LED running lights. The postman was overloaded with parcels today. I got the studs to replace the rusty ones on the drivers back rest, the remaining parts to re-fit the rear indicator from Midlands Superbikes and a parcel of assorted Honda parts from David Silver Spares in the UK. I now have the pinstripes to take round to the painters for the front mudguard. Again, today, nothing further done to the bike due to having to do some woodturning for a Craft Fair next weekend.

Wednesday I got all the old studs off the drivers back rest and the cloth underneath is in poor condition so I will take it to a local repairer tomorrow to get the panel replaced. I missed a couple of items on eBay US overnight, nothing important it just would have been easier than stripping and re-chroming.

Thursday I won a set of Progressive air shocks on UK eBay for £51 ($84) which I think was a bargain, saves me having to do anything with the originals which are slightly pitted. I took the stripes to the painters so that they can finish the front mudguard for me and the back rest to the trimmers.

Didn’t get anything done for the rest of the week as I am still busy making wooden turned items for next weekends Craft Fair. To finish the week on a low I was the underbidder on Saturday on a Valk headlight on US eBay. Still it went for more than I was prepared to pay. I don’t think I’ll manage to do much next week either BUT the following week I hope to go to the chromers.

Nov 212009

The postman didn’t deliver anything this morning (Monday). Hopefully tomorrow. Ken came round and we re-positioned the bike on the lift so that I could get at the prop stand. I then did some stripping this afternoon and I got the exhausts off, foot rests, sissy bar, rack and various trim panels. There is some surface rust on chips on the frame paint and so it is going to need a good clean and then a touch up in various places. The more I look at it it may be better to strip to a bare frame and respray but I don’t think that I am prepared to do that much work at the moment or spend that much money.

Post man arrived this morning with the parts from Pinwall. Very pleased with them except for the radiator cap it isn’t quite as good in the flesh as it looked on the photos still its not too bad. The other pieces are better than they looked in the photos so it evens out. I stripped the exhausts down and found that two of the welded brackets had snapped off the covers due to rust and two of the clamps were missing so more pieces to order and I will have to see about making new clamps to replace the broken ones.

Post man didn’t deliver anything on Wednesday but I had a phone call from one of the bike shops that is advertising my bike for sale. They have a customer who is interested and I will take it for him to look at tomorrow. I didn’t manage to do anything today and I won’t tomorrow either.

I temporarily fitted the radiator grill to take some photos for the manufacturer to the bike today (Friday).

New stainless grill

New stainless grill

I took the rear wheel off and much to my surprise the axle and splines were really well greased and in very good condition so no problems there. I took the prop stand off and tomorrow Ken will come round and help me get the tank off so then I can strip the bars and the front end (without damaging the tank paintwork) next week and get it all away for polishing and chroming.

On Saturday Ken helped me get the tank off and slightly re-position the bike on the jack as with everything removed from the rear the front wheel wouldn’t come off the ground!

Nov 152009

The week started with a high, I have heard from the transport company with the bike lift and they have finally landed and it will be here tomorrow (Tuesday). I went to the bike shop in my village and the last part has arrived that I ordered. I missed out on a headlight on eBay in the UK last night as it went for too much money so mine will have to be re-chromed unless another comes up in the next few days.

The bike lift arrived on Tuesday as did the replacement fork seals. Battery on charge again as it was flat, I need to check out the alarm as the battery checks out OK.

Wednesday did some shopping and learnt some more Spanish. I wanted to buy the core plugs (freeze plugs) to do the de-smog conversion. A friend told me where to get them but not what they are called in Spanish. After a description from me the guy in the shop realized what I wanted and got them for me they are tapons de bloque in Spanish for anyone who is interested and they cost me 1.45€ for 3 so now I can do that change. I also got a ratchet tie down for the bike on the lift and some matt black spray paint to touch up the radiator. Arranged to move the Valk tomorrow to my neighbours car port and a friend is coming round to help me to put the bike on the lift.

Valk moved to my friends car port and with help from another friend (Ken) I got it mounted on the wooden lift adapter and on the lift. Fits well and if anything it is front heavy rather than rear heavy. Now the stripping in anger can start.

Bumble Bee in its new home

Bumble Bee in its new home

The stripes for the front mudguard turned up at my sons house in the UK so he has sent them on to me. Midlands Superbikes finally have the other pieces for the rear indicator and they have posted them over to me.

That’s all I got done this week due to other things to do, hopefully next week will be more successful.

Nov 082009

More disappointment today (Monday) my order with CPC in the UK for various bits and pieces (not just for the Valk) has had the exhaust paint and Copper ease deleted as they are unable to ship them abroad due to fire regulations. I will have to see if I can find some here but I am not holding my breath, or bring some back next time I am going to the UK. I ordered some parts including the pin stripes for the front mudguards from a on-line UK Honda spares supplier David Silver Spares. They ship to Spain but again they use UPS so I have had the stuff (which is special order) marked for delivery to my son who will send them on to me by normal post when he gets them.

Got the saddle bags back from the leather shop. They have done a superb job on them, re-dye, replace rusty studs and re-polish all for only 35€ a real bargain. They look almost brand new now, I still have to track down some dollars to buy the stiffeners from leather-lid inserts (It’s a shame they don’t take cards). I managed to track down some heat paint in silver and black so I can re-do the exhausts when I get them off. I also got 4 of the 5 pieces I had ordered at the local bike shop and the 5th piece will be in on Friday. A friend is off to the UK on Thursday and so he will bring me back the copper slip in his hold baggage so just waiting for the lift and adapter now.

In case the welder doesn’t get the steel this week and to save waiting for it today I knocked up a wooden lift adapter from the drawings on the main VRCC board. I have offered it up and it fits perfectly.

Now just waiting to hear when the lift will get here. Finally heard from Pinwall today and got the shipping sorted so hopefully those bits will be here next week. The de-smog pieces and carb adjusting tool arrived from Red Eye services, the bits from CPC arrived and the master cylinder covers arrived from Chuck.

The bike lift should be here tomorrow (Saturday). I have been talking with Cymarc Engineering in the UK and have worked with them to get a stainless radiator grill for the Valkyrie. This is the prototype they have produced

Grill from Cymarc Engineering

Grill from Cymarc Engineering

They are shipping one over to me so a photo of it on the bike shortly.

The lift still hasn’t arrived the transport company are stuck on the ferry, it can’t dock due to the hight winds. A neighbour has said that I can use her car port to store the Valk in so that I can get the wheels off and not worry about it getting too wet when everything is off it at the chromers. That’s all for this week, not much done really, I hope next week is more successful.

Nov 012009

A bad start to the week. The parts that I ordered from my local bike shop have failed to arrive from Alicante and the pinstripes for the front mudguard are not available in Spain for some reason. It looks like I will have to order those from the US. I have ordered the de-smogging vacuum seals from the US and found out where to get the core (freeze) plugs from in Spain. The battery has gone flat on the Valkyrie again, looks like I will have to remove the alarm as I have checked the battery and it is fine. I have ordered some 850 degree C exhaust paint from the UK to repaint the headers and given one of the threads on the VRCC USA board this would sound that it is suitable as the temperatures don’t seem to get that high.

Removed the radiator covers and grill and the engine crash bars.  Had a long chat with Marty in the US from the VRCC board about the rebuild and had some interesting information from him on replacing the wheel bearings. Bid on three things from Pinwall overnight and I won them all, now got to persuade them to ship USPS. Found a bike lift s/h on eBay just round the corner from where my son lives in the UK now got to win it and then get it here. Got my first Spanish member for the VRCC Espana chapter from Madrid.

I have bought a bike lift in the UK and it is being brought over next week by the firm who brought the bike over. I have been to see the village welder and he will make the lift adapter for me from the drawings on the VRCC board. The 99 cent bike cover that I ordered from Hong Kong arrived and it is very good quality. Once the lift arrives I am moving the bike to a neighbours car port so that I can remove the wheels and front forks and take them and the chrome pieces for polishing and chroming.

No new photos this week but I will put that right next week. I have polished the front indicator mountings on my buffing wheel and they have come up remarkably well, so they will not have to go to the polishers.

The saddlebags have been finished being refurbished by the saddlers so I will collect them next week. I missed out on a few items on eBay this week as I wasn’t prepared to bid any higher and so I will have to keep looking. Back to the bike shop next week to see if the parts have arrived.

Oct 252009

Parts ordered from eBay in the UK and the US have started to be delivered.

New adjustable control levers, one chrome rocker cover, exhaust gaskets, polished cam covers, riser cover, standard exhaust tips etc. I have placed a few more bids on eBay. It is a great pity that US suppliers like Pinwall insist on using UPS for delivery instead of USPS. Courier companies are most unreliable here where as USPS comes with the postman to the door.

Front mudguard removed and I found that the bolt that holds the chrome trim on was badly corroded and wouldn’t come off. Out with the dremel and a cutoff disk and I now need to drill and tap the hole for a new bolt. I took the mudguard to a local painter who I have used before and they will treat the rust, respray the outside to colour and treat the rust on the inside and paint with black stone chip for about 100€. I just need to get the pinstripes.

I removed the headlamp shell and the indicator warning lens had gone brittle and broke when I removed it (another part to buy). I found that the front left indicator mounting rubber was split and held together with tape (another part to buy). I got the part numbers for these and went to my local motorcycle repair shop gave him the numbers and he ordered them for me and they are due on Friday (2 day service). I removed the windscreen mountings and found them all to be very corroded.

The parts from Midlands Superbikes arrived but only half the indicator peoices necessary so I will have to wait for them to send me the other pieces before I can fit it.

I found that the previous owner liked leaning the bike to the left whilst riding it, two of the exhaust headers and the engine protection bar are worn away where the bike has been grounded whilst cornering, so more repairs necessary here too.

I took the saddlebags to the leather repair shop in Javea and they will refurbish them and re-dye them for me for a maximum of 50€, which I think is a lot better than replacing them. I have also found someone in the USA who makes inserts for the bags that stiffen them to prevent the sagging. I just need to find out how to get a money order in Spain so I can get a kit ordered.

A busy but satisfying week.

Oct 252009

Unfortunately I don’t have a garage to work on the Valkyrie and so it will just have to be stored on my drive and covered with a bike cover whilst the rebuilding evolves.

First job was to remove the saddle bags and the mounting brackets. I then found that the fender support brackets were rather pitted (more chroming to get done).  On removal of the windscreen I found that the rear half of the headlamp shell is also badly pitted.

Still waiting for the rear indicator and the speedo cable to arrive from Midlands Superbikes.

Oct 252009

I contracted Jack Neale Transport to collect my Valkyrie from Market Harborough to Orba in Spain. A price of £250 was agreed and on 8th October 2009 my ‘Bumble Bee’ arrived at my home in Spain. Unfortunately the battery was flat but a set of jump leads soon sorted that after I had worked out how to turn the alarm / immobiliser off. The missing indicator and speedo cable hadn’t been replaced by Midlands Superbikes as promised. I found out in a telephone call to them that the parts hadn’t been delivered to them yet and when they were they would post them to me.