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Honda's Best Kept Secret
Motorcycle Care-Maintenance

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Maintenance-Cosmetic

Caution:
Everything done here, is my own opinion your own decision to do maitenance is your own. Anything done on your motorcycle can be dangerous. Please check with a professional technican to do the prep and repairs listed on this site. Do anything at your own personal Risk!!

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Winterizing-Storage Prep

Covers-Location

Dowco Covers

The place were you store your bike has a big impact upon the condition it will be in when putting it back into service again. A wet-musty enviorment can be very damaging to the metals and even plastics can be damaged and faded by too much ultra-violet exposure and heat. I would advise a garage or well ventilated storage facility with some type of climate control if possible.

There are a lot of good motorcycle covers available now days on the market, half covers-full covers even with soft liners to protect your windshild-bike from unessecary scuffs-scrapes. This also cut down emensely of the paint and plastics-rubber that can be damaged by the rays of the sun. I once saw a near mint condition Gold Wing go into storage with every precaution taken but a cover. It came out the next season with the left side severely faded from the direct light coming through the garage window on the WS-painted parts. Not a very pretty site on a $15,000.00 motorcycle. The only down side to using a cover is one that fits loose that can flop around loosely in the wind and damage your paint-expensive windshield. Make sure it secured, were this is not a problem.

Use a vented cover, which will allow moisture to escape, rather than retaining it if possible. More expense but isn't that PC worth it? The Hondaline cover I have is the vented type for the PC 800.

The daily temperature change should be minimal, but a heated area is not really necessary. Ensure that proper ventilation is present, as fumes from fuel and battery are explosive/dangerous. Do not store near open flames or sparks by any means. Please read service manual for proper warnings.

Wash-Clean Bike

Castrol Wash

This is a must after servicing the bike before placing it in your storage location. Wash-clean the bike very well, there are a lot of good products on the markets to do so with. Here are some personal Tips I have for you that really helps.

Use a sponge to wash your motorcycle to reduce scratches and un-wanted swirls like you can see on some dark colored paints such as black and dark colors. Not nessecarily just the PC800. This is a Huge help when drying the bike off very well. Purchase a leaf blower, new or used up to you. I paid less than $25 bucks for a good name brand blower from a local WalMart store. also I have saw quite a few in pawn shops for extremely low prices. Some of the better units have a very high out put of air. Use the leaf blower to dry your bike off which helps stops corrosion-rust in those hard to get to areas. Also it helps from leaving the annoying water spots on your paint that I really dislike. Try it, it does work well! Ever noticed the rusty PC brake pedals that have rust between the chrome teeth patterned area's.

Also take care when cleaning you Lexan-other aftermarket windshields. Harsh cleaners like Window Cleaner can damage and delaminate you factory-aftermarket windscreens. I use as reccomended just plain old soap-water. See you manual for proper-care and maitenance of your paticular WS, because they aren't cheap to replace.

Change The Oil

Castrol

Warm the engine and then change you oil. (Used oil has some acids formed in it) Old oil left in the engine is not near as good as ne new-fresh oil. The oil will drain much better when the engine is warm and allow most of the dirty oil to drain off engine components.

Oil filters reccomended OEM filter seems to be the best choice for their superior design-filtering capacities in most motorcycle manufacturers advise the use of their products (of course).

Fuel Stabilizer-Drain Carbs

STA-BIL

Sta-Bil:
You might want to clean-drain the carbs-float bowls and jets before storing to prevent deposits caused by fuel that evaporates over time. Refilling the fuel tank with fresh fuel will prevent the tank from rusting. Been there done that...

What Happens to Fuel When it is Stored?
Stored fuel can break down to form gum and varnish deposits which clog your fuel system and make gas go bad. This can cause bad starting problems, increase maintenance costs and shorten the life of small engines.

Any fuel, be it gasoline, diesel, or heating fuel, is made up of many different organic compounds. These compounds are constantly changing over time and become new compounds that change the characteristics of fuel. Oxygen and other elements in the environment create new molecules that build up to form gummy residues or varnish-like films that can clog fuel lines, carburetors, and injectors.

Some fuels are treated with oxidation inhibitors that allow them to be stored up to two months without generating excessive deposits. Other fuels have no inhibitors at all. In any case, proper storage of equipment includes stabilizing the fuel to protect your engine.

Is Draining Fuel A Good Solution?

Not really. Draining fuel can be a hassle that leads to other problems. First, it is impossible to get every drop of fuel out of the system by simply draining. In order to remove all fuel, lines must be blown out, or enough fuel will remain to cause problems. Second, draining exposes the bare metal in the tank and fuel system to air and moisture which causes rust and corrosion. Third, gaskets and seals may dry out or crack, leading to leaks when the system is refilled. Lastly, drained fuel is a fire and safety hazard and proper disposal is difficult. For these reasons, draining is not the solution.


Lube Cylinders

Remove the plugs and then placing Marvel Mystery Oil,or your personal alternative into each individual cylinder through the spark plug hole being careful not to get foreign foreign pieces into the cyliders. So use compressed air-cleaners to get the grit-grime out be fore doing so. Grit under a valve can-will cause it to burn a valve.

Then get a piece of clear tubing and with your mouth (Careful!) pull some oil into the clear tube and blow it into the cylinder directly. Then with the plugs wires off turn the motor over until sufficient oil is placed into the cylinders, be very cautious! DO Not start the engine! If the wires are on it will start! Then install the plugs one by one and leave them loose on purpose. But when restarting the bike when taken out of storage, you should consider buying a new set of Advance Auto Parts $1.50 to $2.00 ND- NGK plugs quanity of 4 needed.

"ND and NGK are good inexpensive plugs. At $1.50 to $2.00 at autoparts stores (vs twice that at motorcycle dealerships) is not worth the slightly less expensive
Champion or expensive snake-oil Splitfire".(TY-DK)

Battery Storage-Maintenance

Battery Tender

Yuasa Batteries

What is the proper way to store my motorcycle battery?

Clean battery case and terminals with baking soda and water, being careful to make sure the solution does not get into the battery. Always check to ensure the battery is fully charged before storing. Batteries stored in a discharged state are susceptible to freezing and an increased rate of further discharge. Store in a cool dry place ( not next to a furnace or other heat source) and out of reach of children and pets. Check the state-of-charge every 45-60 days and add distilled water if needed. It is not recommend battery maintenance charger/tester for prolonged time.

Battery Tender:
Many automatic battery chargers turn off when the battery voltage rises or the charge current falls to a preset level. Then after a period of time, when the battery self discharge characteristics have reduced its terminal voltage significantly, sometimes to the point where the battery has given up almost 90% of its stored charge, the charger will turn on and recharge the battery. This type of cycling will dramatically reduce battery life. The Battery Tender Plus battery charger does not turn off. It automatically switches to a safe float voltage level that keeps the battery charged and yet does not do any harm to the battery or cause any reduction in its useful life. A good option for battery upkeep. I also like the Batery Tender's Battery Charger with quick-connect socket for hassle-free connections.

Long Term Battery Storage+ -

1.Remove, clean and inspect the battery for damage to the terminals and case.
2.On batteries with removeable caps, check inside the cells for the presence of sediment, or sulfation (visible white deposits on plates that reduce the batteries ability to receive a charge) or mossing (lead crystals that can form at high currents and cause internal shorts).
3.Check the electrolyte level;if it's low, refill up to the indicated marks with distilled water.
4.Fully charge the battery and replace filler caps.
5.Check the battery's charge before storage begins and then every month to six weeks, using a voltmeter and (on batteries with removable caps)a hydrometer. A fully charged 12-volt battery should measure between 12.6 and 12.7 volts after the battery has been charged and then allowed to sit idle for several hours off the charger. Six-volt batteries should read about 6.30 to 6.35 volts.

A fully charged battery (either 6-or 12-volt) will have a specific gravity of 1.265, while a battery with only 25 percent charge will have a specific gravity of 1.155. High, nearly equal hydrometer readings with little differences between cells indicate a charged and healthy battery.
6.Carefully inspect cables-clamps-connections-and overflow tubes for wear, damage, pinching and cuts.
7.Recheck the battery's charge before installing in the motorcycle.

Fluids

Brake Fluid

This being just my own opinion, of anual brake fluid change so check with your dealer or manual for exact change times. I actually do it every year. Please be careful, the fluid will damaged paint-vinyl and other related items on you bike!

If the annual brake fluid change has not been performed recently, it is advisable to change the brake fluid, as contaminated fluid will cause corrosion and deterioration of the hydraulic brake system. Fluid should be light amber in color. If it is dark or cloudy, the system must be flushed and fluid renewed.

Clutch Fluid

Hydraulic systems-If your motorcycle has a hydraulic clutch and brakes, check the fluid levels routinely and change fluids according to the manufacturers' recommendations. See your owner's manual or call dealer.

I change it when I change my brake fluids on a normal basis.

Coolant-Antifreeze

Dealer Locator (Local)

In the August, 1997 issue of MOTORCYCLE CONSUMER NEWS and then finalized in the November, 1997 issue, MCN detailed accounts of motorcyclists that encountered severe problems with mainly their water pumps if they were using antifreeze (coolants) that were designed for automobiles. "Our first findings were that the vast majority (98.7%) of pump failures occurred on bikes that had had their cooling systems flushed, or drained and refilled, within the past year. Secondly, of the bikes with failed pumps, 99% had been filled with automotive-type coolants, such as Prestone, Zerex or a house brand from some parts chain like Pep Boys. Less than 1% of the bikes with failed pumps had used pre-mixed Hondaline coolant or another motorcycle-specific anti-freeze." They went on to say that if you currently have automotive silicate-bearing coolant in your bike now, get it out as soon as possible and replace it with a motorcycle-specific coolant like Hondaline Pro Honda HP Coolant.

Tires

Caution!
When Purchasing Motorcycle Tires, you Must contact the tire manufacturer-dealer to confirm your personal choice of tire-sizes are correct for your motorcycle! Tire Size-Width-Compound is Very important! Also too wide of a rear tire will rub on the PC 800's Rear Trunk Liner and will rub a hole through it as well.

PC 800 Tire Application Guide

Motorcycle Accessory Wharehouse (MAW)

Dunlop's Fitment Guide

Metzeler

Park the motorcycle on the center stand and support the motorcycle with wood blocks to remove any weight from the tires.
Inflate the tires to the recommended pressures and inspect/remove gravel, glass, or other road contaminants from the tire treads.
Now is the best time to check tire tread depth to see if new tires should be on your shopping list. Also check for cupping or any type of abnormal wear or dry rotting. Riding a motorcycle with dry rotted tires can be dangerous, and should not be ignored. Measure depth between tire tread at the center of the tire/road contact area. Then carefully check your manual or tire manufacturer for exact specs and compare to yours.

Last Preps

Also keep a check-torque to manual specs, bolts-nuts-fastners. Especially keep an eye on the Top Stand Bolt (can back out-needs to be loc-tited-torqued) as well as some other PCers have pointed out the shift lever can become loose Do Not Over Tighten! (The bolt can-will break if over torqued).

Chassis Lubrication

Lubricate with a water-displacing light lubricant spray, such as CRC 556 or WD 40 or even the dry type spray non-silicone lube.Clutch or brake lever pivots Rear brake pedal and linkage pivot points-Center stand and side stand pivots.

Lubricate all lock mechanisms, including ignition, fuel door, trunk pivot areas, foot peg mech., rear brake pivot point, top box (if you have-you get the idea), etc. Additionally, lubricate seat hinges, latch supports and mechanisms to ensure trouble-free operation.A light coating of vaseline on exposed nuts, bolts, and plated hardware will further protect against corrosion.

Lock cylynders seems to work best using the graphite powder. The liquid type of spray lubes can seize your lock cylynders up in freezing weather.

(Caution): Do not spray any lubricants or preservatives with a petroleum base on Pearl White paint especially nor any other color of painted surface, like cosmetic parts-Shelter-Side Covers-etc. But especially Pearl white..

Brake Function Check

Check your front and rear brakes for proper operation, brake pads and shoes for proper thickness, and rotors and drums for smooth surfaces. Inspect brake lines and all associated lines within the brake system for dry rotting-cracks-leaks. If any are found check the proper certified motorcycle technican or shop for repairs. Rotor surface wear can cause pulsing brake-fading and in some cases the mal-function in breaking capacity. You can't be too careful here!

Aluminum Wheel Cleaning-Care

Purchase a can of Mother's Metal Polish. Purchase some 1000 grit wet-dry sandpaper from an auto parts or paint store. Clean all dirt-grime off the wheels before beginning this is a definite must.

Using a bucket or water sprayer bottle, water sand the wheels using strokes in the direction of the rims-Not crossing the factory grooves in the wheels.

Sand until you get a dull, but clean of dirty stains and contaminates off the wheels. Then begin polishing the wheels using a dry cloth, and repeating until you have the results you want to aquire. You may need to do spot sandings to get all the stains off.

Then accordingly polish as nessecary to seal from contaminates. Wax applications seals your hard work from dulling again.

It took me 2 hours of effort-work, but the results were a near flawless shine to the once dirt-stained wheels. Well worth the effort.

DO Not try this with the bike running in gear on the top stand. Do at your own risk!

Paint Care-Tips

Swirl Marks:
One of the biggest problems on keeping a nice mirror-like finish is swirl marks, the cause:

What causes swirl marks?
Swirl marks are actually microscopic scratches in the finish. These are often caused by the use of a buffer with the wrong type of polishing pad and/or wax/polish. Automatic car washes also can cause swirls, especially on clear coat paints. Another culprit is hand application or removal of product using a harsh material, or pads and cloths that have picked up micro abrasives from falling on the ground or improper storage. To avoid swirls, thoroughly wash all dirt particles from your finish before applying polish or wax. And always use a 100% terry cloth towel, because its nap draws any contaminants on the surface up into the towel instead of letting them scratch the sensitive paint.

Removing Swirl Marks

If you have light swirls, swirl removers such as ScratchX or Mirror Glaze Swirl Remover will help safely restore your finish. Moderate to deep swirls, however, will probably require a safe paint surface prep, followed by a pure polish and then a protective wax. If this process won't remove the swirl marks, you will need to take your car to a local professional who can determine whether the scratches are so deep that painting or other work is needed.

The Difference-Wax-Polishes


Today there is a lot of confusion about the difference between a polish and a wax. Many manufacturers are marketing waxes as "polishes" and the terms have become almost interchangeable.

Professionals know there is a big difference. A polish is more like a paint conditioner that restores valuable oils to the paint, eliminates fine scratches and creates incredible high gloss not possible with waxes. An application of a pure polish should be followed by waxing to protect the shine and extend its life.

Why Wax Your Bike........

Painting a motorcycle adds to the value and plain and simple looks great! Unless you want to spend money on accessories or painting is up to you. But I prefer keeping the finish looking as nice as the day it rolled of the showroom floor if possible vs. spending big bucks on re-painting.

A good grade cover is a must, but even riding your bike can lead to bugs-contaminates-tar-bird droppings that must be taken in account to keeping your bike looking good.

In addition to countless environmental factors, catalytic emissions from the cars in front of you are depositing hydrochloric or sulfuric acid particles on your bike's surfaces. All of these contaminants take a toll on your paint's finish if the finish is not properly maintained.

Imagine what would happen if you only brushed your teeth once a year. The buildup could lead to costly dental repairs. And your teeth might never look as good as they did before.

Your bike's paint is constantly exposed to the elements and needs regular care to keep looking its best, too.





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