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Toys-N-Yotas: The Shop

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    Makes sense, but I’m not ready to give it up yet. Gonna be tire shopping this winter, might just go down to a more A/T style (70:30 tire) as opposed to the 90:10 MTs I’m rolling on now.

    Friday on my home from work i detoured to Mono Centre Brewing Company and picked up 6 brewery-fresh beers, thoroughly enjoyed them over the weekend. Thinking this may become a regular detour while riding weather is in stock. I was hoping to make another trip there with Matt today, but his wife has kept him busy, and now MCBc is closed for the day.

    On Saturday i had to do pads and rotors all the way around Sams caravan, calipers in the rear as well (fucking again!!!). I did the brakes in the rear exactly 11.5 months ago, exactly 30,000 kms ago. One pass on back left was down to the baking plate, which prompted Sam to alert me of the servicing required. I think i noted in April when i pulled the snow tires off that the rear brakes looked like shit. This damn van EATS rear brakes, pretty sure I’m gonna outsource the job next time. Maybe somebody else will have better luck.


    Not much The Shop these days since getting the atv sorted out.
    On the labour day weekend i did a full brake job on the Caravan, pissed me off that i had to put another set of calipers in the rear end….my lifetime free exchange calipers failed again, lucky for me the Shop was closed by the time i got dug in, so i had to buy a brand new set from Canadian tire to the tube off about $450. These better last till at least the spring. This damn van eats through rear brakes in about 15,000 km, perhaps Ive gotten 30,000km once since we bought it.

    In lighter news, I am nearing my 3,000km target on the bike this year, up to 2,000 as of Saturday. I had to adjust the rear brakes, too much travel on the pedal when i need to lock it up on the trails.

    Weather looks killer for next 10 days or so, will hopefully get another 250-500 kms closer to my goal by end of next weekend.

    Got a full day in the shop to myself, and no family at home this coming Saturday. Hopefully big things come from this opportunity.


    Hate to admit it, but I’m giving up on 2023 as a riding season. It is no one factor, but a few half-assed excuses.
    Tires too worn, especially the front.
    Ribs still tender from a fall 2.5 weeks ago because of the previously mentioned worn front tire.
    Weather is shitty now, cold and rain are not for me.

    Oh well, there’s always next year. Some new rubber will renew my confidence, and winter will build motivation.


    Coming soon to The Shop, men doing work.
    James asked me for a time slot in the shop this weekend, he wants to swap winter tires onto his DD, and replace a leaking header gasket on the FJ. I told him as long as he helps me push my 600 pound workbench with eff’d up castors out of the way, he’s free to use the space on the weekend.

    Last week a coworker dropped off a pair of snow blowers to be tuned up. Should be a couple hours work each, few bucks in my pocket, or beers in the fridge.


    Today in The Shop, I started on the pair of snowblower from my coworker, I drained both carbs and cleaned the jet in the carb with green gas. I wanted to get new spark plugs today, but Davenports closes at noon, not 1 like I thought. Pretty sure i just need a pair of plugs, couple litres of oil for the pair. One of them needs belts put in, but I was given the belts.

    My in laws showed up to do a Halloween event with my girls, so I snuck in a quick oil change in my mo-laws Escape.

    Out of the shop, I cleaned the eaves and started packing away toys in the shed. The Quadrunner and pair of DR600s packed away nicely.


    Yesterday in The Shop, I had truckee in for some quick jobs.
    Recently my exhaust got a lot louder, and on a cold morning i spotted a large leak via big clouds of steam under the passenger floor board. Quick inspection showed the gasket between the Y-pipe and tailpipe had failed almost completely. $16 and a couple new bolts had it sealed up tight again. Unfortunately, the exhaust is still quite loud (in a very unsexy V6 manner) due to the 1/2 dozen holes in the muffler. I’ll attach a picture of the biggest hole. Approximately 3cm dilated.
    While i was under truckee, I greased all the drive line zerks.

    Will prolly give Matt’s 4runner a greasing over the weekend. I borrowed his 4th Gen to cruise to work yesterday and was quite impressed. I think this is the first time i drove it further than the 100 metres been our two houses.


    A couple nights in the last week, Matt and I have been working on his new 1984 Honda Spree. Officially an NQ50, a one-owner 50cc two stroke for LCBO and timmies runs.

    Mechanically it’s pretty sound, but cosmetically gross.
    This week we pulled all the plastic off the body, spooned off a set of crunchy tires, rims and exhaust painted (still drying), got the seat recovered, and have been searching for bearings and seals online. The scooter shows symptoms of a bad rear wheel bearing, however the wheel bolts directly To the final reduction shaft, meaning the bad bearings are pressed into the engine case. Will take some more digging to find obsolete bearings, but matt is motivated. New tires and drive belt arrived, just waiting on rims to dry and bearings to be found.


    Being that it’s a Honda, the wheel bearings should be a fairly common size I would think.


    The difficulty is that the rear bearings are in the engine case as opposed to the rim itself. The rim attaches firmly to a splined shaft that floats on bearings. Just means we gotta get more invasive in the surgery to make that rear wheel stop wobbling.

    I spooned a new tire into the freshly painted front rim Monday night, however I pinched the tube during re-install. She did not hold any pressure… i don’t feel too bad, the tubes might be 40-years old, but they are def cheap to replace at $10.40 each.


    Last night in The Shop, Matt and I worked in the Spree a little bit. Some wins some losses.
    Win, new tube went in perfectly this time, no snags. The old tube had a pin hole where it got pinched, a tear from where i stabbed it during removal, and was generally a little thin around the edges.
    Losses, the new belt was too wide and too long to fit, the “wheel bearing” has def failed, and struggles to find oil seals continues.
    I think matt only needs to buy two bearings And two seals to be up and running again.

    Gahh, nearly all my pictures from last night were very blurry…dunno how that happened 🤪


    I put an hour into Matts scooter last night in The Shop.
    Over the course of an hour we drank s couple beers, are some chips and replace the rear “wheel bearing”. Was a pretty uneventful fix, but stressful… the 40-year old aluminum case has a bunch of hairline cracks in it, so in really didn’t want to smack it at all. I used a slide hammer to pull the bearing and seal in one shot, and a 15/16” socket to drive the bearing in. Matt had the old seal in his pocket, in an attempt to get one locally. The ultra rare bearings were needed was easily found for $4 about 3 mins from home. Matt splurged for the premium bearings at $14 each. Plan is to bring the other bearing to work and push it out with the arbor press… i really don’t want to damage the case, or race, or driven clutch shaft.
    Don’t ask me why, but for some reason I offered up my labour services free of charge on this unit…but with that in mind Ive also outsourced the worst jobs… degreasing, and old gasket scraping.

    Matt is out of town a couple days, so I’m switching gears and Going to be doing overdue maintenance on Truckee for a few hours today. Brake service, brake fluid flush, tire rotation, serp belt and idlers are in the task list today. If time permits, I’ll start changing diff oil as well. Think i have about 5-6 hours where my family is going to gramas house.


    Yesterday in The Shop, truckee got some attention.
    I successfully replaced the serpentine belt and idler bearings, hardest part was not breaking the bolts that hold the “skid plate” in place. I bought the replacement parts as a kit from Gates in May 2021… so i guess they were over due.
    Next up I rotated the tires, cleaned the mating surfaces of the hub and rims. My rims are cruising away badly, likely replace them with my next set of tires.
    I then moved onto servicing the brakes to reduce freeplay and vibration. I flushed about 1L of fresh fluid through the rear brake cylinders.
    Went to the front pass side and within about 1 minute i broke off the bleeder screw. 🤬🤬. I voted against repairing that and/or making it worse because I don’t have a new screw here in house. So I pulled the brake pins out, cleaned and re-greased both sides.
    Last order of buisness, crack a beer and tidy up. LOTS of spilt brake fluid to clean up, used 1/4 bag of absorbant to tidy. I have to buy a better universal fit attachment to James’ power bleeder, think I spilt more than I flushed through.


    Last night in The Shop, Matt scraped the last of the gasket off the Honda case.
    At work yesterday I used the arbor press to push out the driven clutch shaft and roller bearing out. Quick pick brought the seal out of the bore. Matt now has both seals in his pocket to source locally, and then the scooter can go back together.
    The seal is unobtainable, so we’ll have to RTV this back together.


    Tonight in The Shop, along with working on Redee, I got to the 1-yard line in Matts scooter repair. I pushed a new bearing into the bore of the driven clutch, and a new seal, as well as put the new seal in for the reduction gear shaft.
    All we are waiting on to be fully mechanically repaired is the gasket for the reduction gearbox. Ebay says it is at the shopping centre already.
    Those new bearings are sooo smooth. Add in the new oem drive belt matt just bought, and the new spark plug from this millennia, this little scooter is gonna fly! (as much as any 40-year old 50cc scooter could possibly fly)


    One of my daughters helped me spoon a fresh tire onto the rear rim of mats scooter with a new tube. Hoping it holds 30psi overnight. The tire is so narrow there’s hardly any space to keep the tube out of the way of the rim, tire bead and spoons. Think I’m just paranoid.
    That eBay gasket en route is one of the last pieces we’re waiting on.

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