Honda NSR125 & Suzuki RF600

Despair shop part 13 – My old man, said buy a new van

This week has seen the arrival of a rather sorry looking old Suzuki RF600 and a rather dilapidated Honda NSR125. When I got them off the van I did my usual and gave them a good once over – mainly I want to know if the engines are seized or if there are any other obvious show stoppers that consign them to the break pile rather than the repair pile. I try to turn them over by hand first and if that goes well they get some oil down the bores before being cranked on the starter. I leave the plugs out and make sure I have oil pressure. If I know they have been stood I will crank them for a few seconds like this before running a quick compression test. By now I can make an educated guess as to whether it is worth persuing or not.

Honda NSR125 starter motorThe Suzuki was fine, the Honda wasn’t. The engine turned ok and felt like it had great compression, the starter was inoperative though. This is where my day became ruined. The starters sit low down and at the front of the engine, they are a geared unit and unique to the bike. This creates a double whammy in that lots of them fail and they are virtually impossible to find on the used market. A new one is £130!!! Given that I normally sell used starters for about 25 quid this was very painful. I took it apart to have a look at it and it is unrepairable – the gears of the reducer are shot, it was full of water, the bearings were knackered and the magnet broken. It is the most knackered starter motor I have ever seen.

Nothing for it, as the compression is good and everything else looks ok I have ordered a brand new one – these bikes sell for a hell of a lot of money when in good fettle. I’s a full power one too so it won’t hang around for long.

Sunday is the day for autojumbling and while there have only been a couple on this year the one at Stickney, just down the road from me, has restarted. It’s not huge but it has been getting bigger and all sorts of stuff turns up. I was looking for a few bits so got up early to have a wander. A mechanical hacksaw was not on my list but at 20 quid I had to liberate it. I also found a back rest for a Harley that should convert nicely for the Junkyard Dog chopper project, some wire wool for cleaning ally parts, some R clips for a rear brake caliper for the Suzuki RF and a few other hard to find bits. My star buy was a headlight for the dog – 10 quid and it looks like it should be just the right size and shape. I will have to source a seperate side light as this doesn’t have one but apart from that I think it will look good. I will offer it up later and see what it looks like, I can then decide if it’s right or not, if not I won’t lose any money on it.

I didn’t find any bikes to buy but had a chat with a guy that has an abandoned CBR1000 project so if that comes off it was well worth the visit.

The CBF1000 is just about finished now, everything seems to work so a quick scrub up and it’s off to Julian at J and B for the MoT, hopefully a quick sale will follow as I have just bought a new van and need the cash. I didn’t want to buy a new van as my old one has 6 months MoT on it and there was nothing wrong with it. Sadly though one morning it decided to immobilise itself and no amount of persuasion, swearing or hitting it with a stick would change it’s mind. Stubborn Bastard. As luck would have it Ian was selling his van and that had a full width ramp in it so it was perfect timing. A deal was struck (that’s a lie I agreed to pay his asking price, bugger wouldn’t budge) and prepared to strip my old van so at least I would get some money back by flogging the engine and box. One of my Facebook buddies got to hear of this and asked if I had checked the engine control relay was getting a live feed. Course I hadn’t, why would I? Anyway turns out he was bob on and with a switched live found I put in a new feed to the relay and the bitch burst back in to life!! Oh well, I had decided to move it on but at least now I would get a decent price for it. Just got to wait for Ian to come back of holiday now and I will go get his one, no doubt I will fill it up with bikes while I am there.

Article provided by David Powell of Boston Bike Bits.

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