Saturday, 29 December 2012

Pro-oiler Installation

For some time I have been sitting on the fence and looking at all types of chain oilers for my Yamaha fj1200.

There are many different types of oiler available, probably the most popular and well known being the scottoiler. The choice is from systems with a bottle you just give an occasional squeeze to send some oil to the dispensing nozzle at one end to electronically controlled systems at the other end of the scale.

So why did I decide to fit an oiler ?  I had a chain break on one of my GPZ 900R s some years ago. To be fair I hadn't maintained the chain as well as I should and the bike had been parked up for the winter in the UK. I had been for a ride a few months earlier when then was salt on the roads due to icy conditions and I had parked it up without thoroughly cleaning my chain and the salt had started some bad corrosion on my low mileage chain (4000miles)..
Anyway out for a ride with a couple of mates in the Norfolk countryside when a huge bang and shuddering form the back of the bike.  One of the sideplates on the chain had snapped in two, I was very lucky it didn't all get wrapped around my rear wheel. Anyway after a change of underwear the recovery service arrived to take me home.

Anyway decided to go for a Pro-oiler after looking at countless write ups on the web. Certainly not cheap ( cost NZ$ 310 delivered from Europe ) but I did like the quality and their attention to detail.

Oiler arrived in 7 days from Europe.

Contents of Pro oiler Kit
Read and studied very comprehensive instructions ( 30 Pages ), trouble shooting , and programming guides before tackling the install.
As the FJ has a mechanical speedo I had to fit a reed switch and magnet to the rear wheel, the system activates the pump every so many wheel revolutions depending on how rich the system is set.
If you tell proiler what bike you are fitting it to they pre programme the unit for your particular wheel size chain size length etc.  Mine was already set by them and upon first reading the instructions it can look a bit mind boggling.
Anyway cable tied and glued the small reed switch to the rear caliper carrier, you also get a small magnet that fitted very tightly into one of the allen screws that hold on the brake disc.

Reed Switch fitted to caliper bracket
Next find a suitable place for the controller. Pro-oiler suggest you place it so you can access it with your left hand for easy adjustment while on the move. On the FJ I found what I thought was the perfect place but on the right hand inner fairing. My thoughts are that once I am happy with the richness of the oil flow it is basically fit and forget.  Pro-oiler recommend you turn up the oil in the rain of if on dusty roads where the chain may get dry but I think I can use my right hand for those operations.

Pro-oiler Controler

The brain of the system is the junction box .  I found an area behind the right hand side cover that I thought would give me enough room for the junction box and the pump next to the battery box.
Prooiler supply self adhesive velcro lads to install the components but I chose to use long cable ties that went around the whole battery box seemed more secure to me.

Junction box with oil pump fitted below
There was still enough room to fit the oil reservoir behind the panel in a position that would make topping up easy, although pro-oiler say that one container can last 10000 kms so not topping up that ofton..

Oil Reservoir

Now time for the business end .
The nozzle that dispenses the oil onto the rear sprocket. This is an area there are different versions but I thought the proiler dual sided nozzle was one of the best. The nozzle comes with a nice stainless bracket that can be glued or bolted to the swinging arm. As the FJ1200 has a steel swinging arm I decided that two small holes and bolting it on was the best way to go.  Not sure if I would with an alloy swinging arm.

Nozzle Set up

The nozzle runs on either side of the sprocket so the oil is forced into the chain by centrifugal force.

I have done just over 1000kms with the oiler installed and very pleased with results.
The chain remains very clean, i am using just normal engine oil as it flings off the dirt with the oil. One of the problems with sticky chain grease it it does stick to the chain but so does all the dirt and grit forming a grinding paste type effect. The chain remains just lightly oiled and very clean.

I did find that the oil fling off was covering my number plate and would cover my panniers if fitted so decided to make an extension to the chain guard this has worked very well, there is some fling off onto the tyre and wheel but being plain engine oil is very easy to clean off.

Chain Guard Extension
Anyway very happy with the whole Pro-oiler package and would highly recomend it, they have taken a lot of time and effort to produce a first class product..

As a Footnote

I sent a few pictures to Pro-oiler as they have a gallery of differant bike fitments but the FJ1200 was not there. I did find it usefull when panning my install though to look at what other people had done.

I got a great reply from Arnold at pro-oiler below

Hello Phil,
Thank you very much for the pictures,
We uploaded them to our gallery.

If you like, we could put your name/site under the pics:
Photo's courtesy of Phil Biggs from New Zealand
Sometimes people don't like their name published, so therefore I am asking.


Pro-Oilers are programmed a bit on the rich side, judging from the pics, I'd say you can select a lower setting, like 2 or even 1.
If there's still too much fling off, you can select a leaner table (14 or 15) and save the new table.
Panniers influence the drag too, so that's also a reason for a lower setting.

Best regards,

Arnold Wubbels
Pro-Oiler NL
T 0031 (0) 485 372286
F 0031 (0) 848 316201

Sunday, 9 December 2012

FJ1200 Fork Seals

Drained oil from forks as I knew my right one was leaking.
Quiet shocked only got about 25ml of oil out so had lost quiet a lot.
Drained left fork leg or I mean I removed the drain screw only to find NO oil came out at all !!!  Guess that explains why it wasnt leaking !

Stripped and cleaned out all forks ,there was someoil in there so some lubrication going on.
Very small stone chips in chrome at top of travel in forks, cleaned up very carefully with 1000 grit wet and dry with WD40.
When reassembled turned 90 degree so chipped area is facing inside hopefully will work if not get them rechromed at end of year.
I made a tool to hold the damper unit with an old socket and a 27mm head sized nut welded together.

My homemade fork tool
Had to try and think of a way to put the top bush and seal in without the driver tool ...  Cut off the end of a used mastic cartridge this was just the right size to fit over the seal :)
Any way all back together now and fill with the correct amount of oil  

FJ1200 Winter Overhaul

Hi All

Been very slack keeping this up to date but have been to UK and Europe for a Month and also busy with general stuff.

Anyway have had the FJ now coming up 3 years and decided it needed a good going over. All I have basically done is oil and filter changed but it needs some definite TLC.

List below

New Rear tyre
New Front Wheel Bearings
Overhaul Clutch master Cylinder and Clutch slave cylinder
Dismantle rear suspension and clean lubricate all bearings and linkages
Front fork seals
Adjust valve clearances ( I borrowed Yamaha tool from my mate Steve while in the UK He is coming to NZ in February for a holiday so need to get them done by then ! )
New spark plugs
Oil and Filter
Air Cleaner  and Fuel Filter
Sort out Fuel Reserve Problem
Balance Carbs
Strip and clean all brake calipers
Fit Pro-oiler Chain oiler system

+ any other general stuff while I'm at it !

Saturday, 8 December 2012

FJ1200 Fuel Reserve Switch

I have had a problem with the FJ reserve switch not operating correctly. The Yamaha FJ 1200 has an unusual system for the reserve done electronically rather than a traditional tap !
What has happened is when the low fuel light comes on the reserve system creates a missfire promting you to swith the electric reserve switch. If you do not switch it over within a few KM,s the bike will stop.  I have only got this low a couple of times and when I have the only way I could get her going again was to diconnrct the wiring to the fuel tank sender unit. Have had the bike in a million bit over the last few months so decided I should look at the reserve system while working through my list. Check out the wiring and found that the switch was open circuit in both positions.
Was able to carefully open the switch up where i found 19 years of corrosion has been working away at the terminal. Cleaned up with some wire wool and reassembled good as new.

Before and after shots below

Before Cleaning badly corroded
After Cleaning like new

Sunday, 8 July 2012

Eventful Ulysses Ride to Apiti

Another early Sunday ride and another frost with temperature around freezing.
Got to meeting point in Waikanae just before 9am ready to go. Had expected a few people to be there but only Russell was there so at 9.05  we decided to head off.
Met two other bikes at Kimberly road in Levin only to find Lex had a dead battery on his Honda VFR. Had already phoned local bike shop who came out with a new battery! ( Great service for a Sunday Morning)..   New battery fitted and off to Shannon to pick up rest of the riders and grab a quick hot coffee.
Sun out and cold but warming up nice and quickly.

Roads were quite good but some shaded areas needed to be treated with respect. Thought to Ashhurst noticed the Manawatu Gorge is closed again , people in Ashhurst must be fed up with all extra traffic they have to put up with.

Through Ashhurst and over the river to Pohangina Valley East Rd. Bit of a regroup to let faster riders go first.  Great scenery makes me realise how lucky we are to be living in such a great place.

Arrived at Apiti Pub for lunch, the fire was roaring which was a nice welcome after a chilly ride. Had a great lunch ,great venison burgers which was locally sourced !!

Upon arrival we found Lex had a flat tyre on the rear of his Honda..  We could not find an obvious hole so pumped a gas cylinder into the tyre to see where it was leaking . Found a hole and used a Sticky String from the puncture repair kit I carry to plug it. Pumped tyre up with another couple of cylinders ,  the landlord of the pub pointed us down the road to a local contractor who had a compressor, Knock on his door he said he's a good joker !!!. 
Anyway he let us use his compressor and we found another hole, so another string plug pumped her up and we hit the road.

Uneventful ride home and plugs held up fine on the Honda.
A good day out with a great lunch and a great group of people :-)

View Larger Map

Sunday, 1 July 2012

Frosty Day Bike Ride

Weather man said it was going to be a lovely winters day so up early Sunday morning with a bike ride planned.
Looked out the window to see frost in garden -2 Deg but a clear sky so looking good.

Wrapped up with multiple layers headed off stopped at Feilding to fuel up and grabbed a quick coffee. Got chatting to another biker who was just going home to get changed for a ride..  Lot of people out today getting the most out of a clear day.

North from Feilding Mrs B wanted to go up Vinegar Hill one of our favorite roads, some caution needed on some shaded areas that hadnt had the sun to dry them off.

Me and Mrs B at Stormy Point Lookout

Stopped at Stormy Point lookout with about 20 other people their allready. Fantastic view of Mount Ruapehu  and further away Mount Taranaki (Egmont).  Stopped for a few pics then off to Hunterville for lunch.

From Lookout Mt. Ruapehu in distance

Set off for Wanganui on Mangahoe Road another favorite road but again some slippery bits that needed to be riden with respect.
Stopped in Wanganui at Sister-in-laws for a cup of coffee and quick catch up.  Then headed home on main highway got home just as it was getting dark and cold..  360kms and a great day :-)

View Larger Map  Map Here

Monday, 25 June 2012

Yamaha FJ1200

While looking at my poor XJ900 in the shed I felt the need to get back on two wheels after a break of about 12 years.
Saw a FJ1200 on Trade Me not far away in Lower Hutt so decided I should go and have a look.
Had a full krauser luggage setup and various spares like new chain and sprockets that the owner hadnt got around to changing.
Bike had seen some life ( 80000kms ) had a few battle scars but I thought it would be a good fit for me.
My two riding buddies in the UK both had FJ,s so I was fairly up on the pro,s and con,s.
I has ridden many thousands of miles with Steve on his FJ in all weathers . We had also been to the Bol'O'Dor in the south of France in I think the early 1990,s.
Rode the FJ home no drama,s . The chain was totally worn out Adjustment at maximum and the chain was so loose Im sure it wasnt far from the ground..  Some peoples idea of maintenance sure leaves a lot to be desired.

Ride along Parapara,s

Had the FJ now for two and a half years been great fun and got me excited about motorcycling again.  She is showing her age so now I have XJ up and running going for a bit of a makeover during the winter months.


Paekakariki Hill Lookout

My 1986 XJ900F is the bike that I have had the longest relationship with! Bought this in 1989 from my great friend Jim in the UK.  Used it fairly regularly untill about 1996 when children became more important in life. Sat in the shed then moved with me half way around the world to New Zealand where it sat in the shed until earlier this year when I finally got the urge to get her going again.

Carbs were totally blocked with all sorts of foreign matter.  Cleaned out carbs only to find that a tee piece between the carbs that was plastic had gone hard and leaked fuel as soon as I turned the tap on..  No worries I thought so tried to get a replacement !  No luck no longer in production. After a bit of research found a beautifully made brass tee piece from a company in Canada Sirius Consolidation
Order online Thusday night in NZ delivered to my door the following Tuesday !!  Thats what I call service..

                            Then fitted new tee piece to carbs ready for fitting back to bike

Carbs fitted new battery charged and fitted .  Moment of truth as I hit the starter.  Coughed and spluttered a bit but then purred into life just as she had 15 years earlier.
After balancing carbs and tweaking the idle jets she seemed just fine. A very big smile on my face...

Off I went got a WOF and some rego and off for my first ride like I had never been away..

Any way put about 500 miles on her in the last few weeks and although she is 26years old I really get great delight from riding the old XJ...   Not the greatest handling bike certainaly by modern standards but brings a big smile to my face still the same.

Friday, 22 June 2012

My GPZ900R Era

The XS500 was finding it hard to keep up with Jim and Ed while out on our group rides so something else needed to be found...
Weekend ride to a few bike shops . Ended up at Wheels International at Hockliffe and ended up coming out the proud owner of a 2 year old GPZ900r.

Collected it the following week....  nearly ripped my arms out of their sockets on the way home.  Soon got used to the GPZ and have many great miles throughout the summer.  Went up to sixteen foot drain near Chatteris where the road is dead straight for about 9 miles and managed to crank her up to 150mph, man the road gets very narrow at that sort of speed and when you slow down to 100mph you feel like you can get off and walk. Or course there were very few speed camera,s etc around in those days!!

Was off to work one morning in 1987 in rush hour in Bishops Stortford when a lady decided to pull out of a t junction right in front of me. Luckily I was going very slow less than 30mph and was being followed by a driving examiner taking someone for their car test ( great witness for insurance company )  I had no opportunity to brake and hit her right front wheel squarely on, left the bike flew over her car tumbled up the road and just missed being hit by a car coming in the other direction.
I laid there for a moment thinking this is going to hurt but to my surprise everything seemed be work and still be in the right place !  The bike was written off by the insurance company and I did a good deal on a brand new last year model Blue GPZ900R . 

This was a great bike although a sideplate on the chain broke at less than 1000miles not impressed, had to get Jim,s brother in law out with his transit van to rescue me... 
Other than that the GPZ,s were great bikes and gave me a great deal of pleasure..

Yamaha XS500

The XS 500 now that was an ugly bike !!!!!
Bought this in 1984 thought I should get a big bike !
Found in Exchange and Mart just local to where I was living at the time in Takeley Essex.
The guy who owned it was a pilot at stansted airport just up the road and very rarely used the bike.
The main reason I bought it was it had never been out in the rain and was totally spotless..

Anyway had a great engine with counterbalance shafts and performed very well..

Although looking like the smaller XS400 and XS250 bikes, the XS500 has a different twin-cylinder engine which features twin-overhead camshafts and four-valves per cylinder. Although such an engine would be ideally suited to a sports motor cycle, Yamaha instead have used it in a state of tune for a bike they classify as a tourer with enough engine power to enable it to keep up with larger capacity machines.
The oversquare power unit displaces 498cc and with a compression ratio of 9.6:1 produces 49bhp at 85oorpm, just one brake horsepower down on the company's 650cc twin.
A four-valve-per-cylinder engine is used because four small valves use space more efficiently than two larger valves, so that, in fact, more head area can be utilised which in turn makes the engine more efficient. Also the lower reciprocating mass of small valves, means higher engine speed before 'bounce' is induced, and better ignition is helped by the sparking plug being central in the head, its most efficient position. The problem with the layout is that to get the valves in an efficient semi-hemispherical head, twin overhead camshafts have to be employed or a complicated system of pushrods and rockers which would negate the effect of the extra engine speed gained from the layout. The XS uses direct-operating overhead cams which make servicing more complicated and time consuming.
The Yamaha has pistons set at 180 degrees unlike many four-strokes with their 360 degree layout with the inherent vibration difficulties. However, Yamaha had the problem of the crankshaft rocking with the alternate reciprocation, so to encounter this they use their patented 'omniphase' balance shaft.
The top speed of this 425 LB bike is 105mph, while it will accelerate over a quarter mile from standing start in 14.3secs; fuel consumption is 46mpg. In all, the XS500 is deceptive for it is more advanced than it looks and 'four-stroke twin' specification suggest.

My Second Bike

Not sure if I should be proud of my bike history ! but I guess it is what it is !!
2nd bike was a Honda Benly 185.  Twin cylinder single carb that ran on the smell of an oily rag.

Bought this off a great friend of mine Jim Dunleavy in the UK who is a perfectionist with everything mechanical so the bike was like brand new.  I later bought my XJ900 off of Jim who had got it brand new . I still have the xj900 now and 26 years down the track its still a great machine..


My 1st road bike was a Yamaha FS1E (1976).
This was a great moped in the UK you could ride these at 16.  I worked at a petrol station while still at school and saved up for a brand new Fizzie, DX ( DX stood for disc brake) very high tech back then.  430 English Pounds back in 1976......

On my sixteenth birthday I was up at 5am helmet on and off on a very cold February morning for my first legal ride on real roads !!
Did 400 miles so well run in by the time I got back home , where I found my mother a nervous wreck as she thought I would kill myself!!!
Did manage to get it up to 50mph laying on the tank on a downhill section, god that felt so fast that first day.......     Anyway great memories

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

New Blog

Decided after looking at some other great blogs that I should get my arse into gear and have a go myself at creating my own blog, so here goes !!