Saturday, January 07, 2006
As the Wrench Turns--A Motorcycle Maintenance Story
Today's motorcycle adventure is dedicated to maintenance, not riding.
I have been ignoring my Yamaha V-Star for too long. It needs carburetor work. It has a full tank of gas and that's been my excuse for putting it off. I have been wanting to ride it, but with the fuel problems it was easier to crank the Harley Davidson and take it out for a spin.
Today was the perfect riding day, except I had my son, so working on the Star was the next best thing (well, maybe not, but I'm trying to convince myself). So far so good--seat is pulled, tank is drained and pulled, stuff and all the parts I have no idea what they are officially called are off so here I am looking at carburetor.
Seems dinner calls and I have done plenty enough at this point so this is where I stopped for the day.
With the official Yamaha Service Manual as my navigator, I am going to see what's wrong. I suspect my jets are fouled so a good cleaning is in order. I'm nervous to do it since the patient in question is my 2005 V-Star 1100cc motorcycle. It has 2,400 miles on it. I've never done this type of work on it (or any motorcycle for the record).
I'm sure you are wondering why I just don't take it down to my Yamaha dealer and have them fix it. Isn't it under warranty? Yes, it is. However, this is entirely my fault. I left the petcock on after riding it and then went on an extended vacation. I know that my particular model is notorious for this problem. So while I could probably claim ignorance and get it repaired under warranty, I am rising to the challenge!
Way I look at it is that I will either fix it or end up taking it to the shop and have them fix it..only it will cost me more!!! I know I can fix it, I am mechanically inclined and while I do mind getting my hands dirty, I actually like to tinker around.
I don't know if I will make a habit out of taking my bike apart but this is a learning experience for me. I might have made a better decision to work on something less new or expensive, but this is what I have. Besides, I think the shop guys down at the Yamaha are a "little" bit less expensive As we all know that HD stands for Hundred Dollars, not Harley Davidson!!! Of course after my Yamaha friends read this they may decide to charge me otherwise *smile*.
I would like to learn a bit more of the mechanical workings of my iron pony. I have already gained knowledge since I now know how to take the fuel line off to get the gas out of my tank without siphoning. Maybe not so handy for me but will be helpful if a group of us are out riding in the middle of nowhere and someone runs out of gas......
Honestly, I would also be able to say that I can work on my bike. Go girl power!!!! There aren't that many women riders....at least compared to the number of male riders. Even fewer are the ones that work on their own. So yeah, I'm doing this for bragging rights too!!
I ride my own, but I also wrench my own.
Check back with me in the next day or two and see how it ends. I am rather curious to see how it ends too....
Keep the Shiny Side Up!!!