Originally Posted by CTripps
I rechecked the back wheel today, and everything looks good. Still sitting on pressure, nice and firm.
So, I pulled the muffler out of the kit box I've used the motor from, opened it up and it's a whole different style inside. The old one came into the chamber, had a cat. converter, then went back to narrow pipe down to the bolt with holes in the sides and baffles tacked to it that sort of fit to the larger pipe. The new one doesn't narrow after the converter, and has a ring of holes on the bottom where the threaded rod is tacked on. They were clear of debris, so I didn't need to open them up. A few minutes per hole with the dremel on the mounting flange elongated the holes to allow me to turn it a few degrees to clear the cranks without heating and bending the pipe.
After that I braved the rain and ran it down the lane and fired up. A few trips up and down the lane and it's very happy. Back to the garage, I've got it idling with the clutch lever locked in, and noticed that it wanted to move a little. Lifted up the bike and the wheel began to turn. Release the clutch lever, and it turned a bit faster. So, shut it down and adjusted the clutch arm until the engine was completely disengaged. No problem now, but I'll have to keep an eye on it. The old brake cable I used as a repair must be stretching more than I expected.
While I had the wheel off I should have roughed up my brake pads, they're not grabbing as well as they used to. I'll replace them soon, they're not very expensive, but in the meantime anyone have any suggestions for softening up the rubber or roughing them up to make it grip a little better? I was thinking of scuffing them with a bit of sandpaper, and I thought about wiping them with a drop of gas and wiping them off, but haven't tried it.
Years ago a good friend of mine was a professional freestyle rider. You know, the guys who ride on the front wheel while going in figure eights and end up doing a back flip and landing perfectly to do a wheelie while sitting backwards on the handlebars. What he could do off a simple jump was phenomenal! Backflips, cancans and nacnacs were a simple warm up for him.
He would always clean his rims with WD40 and make sure that they were well wiped clean afterwards. Miniscule WD40 residue left behind, but still there. No dressing on the brake pads although the calipers were tweaked a little so the rear of the pad would contact the rim slightly before the front of the pad would. I followed his advice and found that the braking sucked really bad.....at first. After 10-15 moderate stops they became very powerful and consistently reliable brakes.
Friends whom I let ride my bike would curse at me after grabbing a handful of front brake because they expected them to be typically weak as most were back then. A strong handful of front brake on my bike would send you over the handlebars.
Take this as you will, but I will not recommend something safety related that I have not done myself.