Wednesday, March 3, 2010

15. True

Well, what can I say. Three times I have set out to update this post, but lacked focus.

Letting the bearings chill in the freezer I readied the tools I would need to drive them home. A deadblow hammer, a socket that matches the outside race of the bearing and snapring pliers.

Cooling shrinks things, which is good, so my bearings had shrunk. I could not discern by how much with my naked eye, but I placed the first onto/into the hub and rapped it home via the socket making sure to seat it all the way home. A flip of the wheel, and not forgetting to drop in the inner spacer, I drove tight the second bearing, then a pinch of the snapring into its groove and the hub was nearly complete. I squeezed in the seals and slid the axle into place. Done.

After cleaning, polishing, painting and lacing up the front wheel it was time to true it. Let me preface this story with two points: 1. It is terribly difficult to true a wheel, false. Many of the new breed of rider has been mislead by money grubbing dealers, and shops, into believing wheels are some sort of item that the cosmic bodies must be in alignment to service. Not true; I only wish that these kids would take some time to actually work on their bikes, to understand how and why the work the way they do. So many of the younger riders I come in contact with answer the question of "how did you fix that?" with "I dunno, the guy at the shop said he did sumthin' with it, and now it works". And at $80 an hour, ouch.

I have come across a few who do work on their machines and it seems to me they get more out of the riding, the lifestyle of motorcycling. I know I do. For all you who wonder, and read the forum postings telling you not to build and true wheels, just try it, it can be done. If you need any help, many people are out there ready and willing, myself included.

Point number 2. I forgot what it was after preaching so vehemently.

As of right now I do not have a large shop, or even a small shop in which to work, each time I tinker on the KX I must unpack all my tools and equipment along with any of the parts I will be working on that day. Sooo, I don't have a truing stand set up, but forks or a swingarm will do just as good, as this is the front wheel, the forks would do the trick. A word to the wise, make sure all is secure and tight, that goes for forks, axle, pointers or gauges, you do not want any movement or shifting.

I placed the fork legs into the triple clamps and laid them across an old shop chair, tying all together and making double sure that no movement would be possible. I used a pick secured to the fork leg as a read out gauge, (in the photo I used a rubber band to hold the pick, which I forgot to snap as work commenced, zip ties and tape were used during actual work.)

The rim needs to be the same distance from the pick all way round. How do you achieve this? By tightening or loosening spokes, for example, if the rim is 1/8th of an inch AWAY from the pointer, the rim needs to be pulled "in". To pull this low spot in, start in the center, and work out, of the low area by tightening the near side spokes. If tightening the near side a half turn, loosen the far side spokes a half turn.

To remedy a high spot loosen the near side spokes and tighten the far side spokes, work slowly, using 1/4 turns and be patient. Something that helps with spoke adjusting is to make sure when building the wheel to use a lube on the spoke threads and nipple seats. This will prevent hours of cursing in the future when it comes time to service the wheel, which you will need to do. The wheel must also be round, not an egg shape, so make sure of this with another gauge. Flopping around the track on oval wheels ain't cool.

Once I had all secured it took about fifteen minutes to true the wheel. I had to make sure that each spoke was tight by giving them a tuning ping, all was good, I'll check them on the first ride and adjust accordingly.

At some point in the near future I will finish off the front wheel by mounting the rim lock, tape, tube and tire.


Steve D said...

Looks great. How long does the paint totally cure so that it is pretty much scratch resistant?

KX Project said...

I like to leave it go for over a month, as there are multiple coats of paint and clear. For the sake of time writing the blog, I write after painting and lay down clear as time passes. You are looking for some scratch tests right? I fan one on the footpeg mount and I could not scratch it, that is a good sign. I could take a photo, but nothing would show up. I did nick the clear coat on the sub frame, but that might be my impatience, I will get a photo up a bit later of that, when I get back to painting the whole frame post.