8 Ball In The Wind

Sunday, July 29, 2012

I Don't Take Shit From A Machine

On the way back from the remote mountain campout last weekend, I hit a bad, sudden dip in the road followed by several nasty bumps that I couldn't avoid.  That first one broke the shock mounting bolt. After getting replacement bolts, I went about the process of fixing it.  Fabricator Kevin had told me that he had good luck using left handed drill bits to extract broken bolts.  So, I went into Tacoma and bought a set to give it a try.  I had forgotten that my heavy duty drill had finally given up the ghost.  Which meant I didn't have a drill to use the bits with anymore.  Not wanting to make another 150 mile round trip just to buy a drill, I ended up buying a cordless drill and charger at the local 2nd Hand store for $25.  Not what I wanted, but it would have to do.

So the bike got jacked up and put on blocks.  The shocks; rear wheel, brake caliper, belt guard, and swingarm were all pulled.  Using the drill and the left handed drill bits to take out the broken bit would have probably worked with my old drill motor.  But this cordless just didn't have the ass to turn the bolt as it slowly drilled into the hardened bolt.  So, it was time for the old 'easy out'.  

I really hate using them.  They seem to break on me about 1/3 of the time.  Then I am stuck with having to deal with them as well.  Gypsy's swingarm was no different.  After getting about one turn of the broken bolt, the easy out snapped right off clean.  I still think they should be called 'hard outs'.

So after trying to tap the broken bolt around with a chisel and a drift for a while, it came down to trying to drill down past the broken 'easy out' and try another bigger one.  My brother Ed and I went through several drill bits before we finally were able to get past the remains of the broken extractor.  Then, with a hole now drill all the way through the broken bolt, we inserted another 'easy out' and tried again.  But not until we gave it a heavy dose of WD-40 and a few minutes to soak in.

This time, it slowly began to turn.  In a matter of just another minute or so the entire broken end of the bolt was free from the swingarm.

Then it was just a case of putting everything back where it was suppose to be.  The swingarm went back into place and was bolted to the swivel axis bar.  The two shocks were reattached.  Except for the usual pains getting the brake rotor to fit properly into the caliper, everything was back together in just over an hour.

After getting all the tools put away, most of which stay in the saddlebags, I took Gypsy for a little test ride.  She handled great.  The rear suspension worked just like it was suppose to.  Once again I was able to do the work myself and not have to pay someone else to do it.  I may not be as fast as a shop, but if I can do the work, I am a whole lot cheaper for me to pay.

This winter, I am figuring on having to go through the top end since the base gaskets are both leaking slightly.  That is something I haven't done in many years.  So I might just call in a brother or two with the skills I don't have and do the work here in the house.  But, that is still a few months good riding ahead.

Catch ya on the road sometime...

No comments:

Post a Comment