Monday, November 19, 2012

Organ Donor

My number on the donor-list has come up.  I have a cylinder head.  Had to drive 2.5hrs to Breckenridge for it, but it is exactly what I need and only cost $180.  Score.  [Un]fortunately, it included the rest of the bike... and she's no show queen.  It looks like she has spent some long hard years outside enduring high altitude UV and cold winters. 

I keep reminding myself that there is more to be salvaged from this new garage occupant than just the cylinder head, but it's a hard fact to accept when there are three motorcycles camping my parking spot, two of which don't run, and one is absolutely filthy.  My wife is staying silent on this subject; probably because the cold steering wheel and daily windshield scraping is a fitting punishment in her eyes.

Look at those beautiful journals.  They do have some minor wear, but certainly good enough to be used again.

Remember how I said all the DR donor bikes have their own closet full of bones?  Well, this one's head has two mended exhaust studs.  Hey, it's better than toasted journals.  I can at least drill these out and retap the holes if I can't get them loose with a little heat and PB Blaster.

Here's a fun comparison.  That's a 2005 CRF450X piston on the left and a 1991 DR350S on the right.  Formula 1 technology versus Briggs & Stratton technology.  Short skirts versus ballroom gown.  Anorexia diet versus hand-me-another-bag-of-Cheetos diet. 

Monday, November 12, 2012

Buy My Bike

I have made the decision to sell my 2005 CRF450X.  There are a few reasons for this: 1) it is far more moto than I need or use, 2) the maintenance cycle on the bike is more than I wish to follow, and 3) its sale should fully-fund this project, I hope.  Since I have more interest in what TWM will become than roosting dirt on local single track, the CRF is gonna go.

My hope is that the new piston and rings, recent valve adjustment, brand new rims and spokes, CO title, and a bunch of other goodies will fetch a decent dollar.  If you know anyone interested, send them my way.

Monday, November 5, 2012

My Head[ache]

Over the past week, I have come to a few conclusions regarding my toasted cylinder head...
1) This is exactly what happens when the engine is starved of oil.
2) This is a relatively common problem on the DR350s because the oil feed line is exposed on the side of the engine.
3) I need a new head
4) ... and so do a lot of other people.

This small chunk of aluminum is proving to be both hard to find and expensive. The trusty ebay has turned up only one hit and the UK-based seller wants more than the bike originally cost, not to mention that it looks as if it's a survivor of the 1666 Great Fire of London.  Pass.

Donor bikes seem to show up on CL occasionally, but none are close to me and all seem to have their own closet full of hollow bones.

Next stop are the salvage yards, but based on forum posts, my confidence in finding one in good condition for a reasonable price is low.

I think patience is going to win this race, which is a little discouraging since getting the bike running is the first step.  And it needs to be running before I can begin any other phase.