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Topic: Garage & Tools Tips & Tricks...  (Read 47879 times)

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William
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« on: November 18, 2009, 10:52:15 PM »

I started a thread in the Triumph section about hex bits for front wheel removal and got back several imaginative responses about how to improvise a quick solution. I thought I'd start a thread where we can share our most useful tips and tricks. What creative solutions have you come up with when working in the garage, be it tools, tool improvisation, storage, repurposed, reused, recycled goods, etc.? You know outside of the box stuff that's been of use to you and that you'd want to share with your fellow ST.Netr's. Post 'em up!

I'll start: To bleed brakes quickly, I use a 60cc cath tip syringe and some surplus tubing. Attach one end of the tubing to the syringe and the other end to the bleed valve, crack the valve and draw back on the syringe. The syringe draws fresh fluid from the reservoir and all air from the line. Tighten the valve and, voila! Brake lines completely bled and free of air. Much cheaper than buying a speed bleeder.
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« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2009, 08:21:45 AM »

Excellent idea for a thread, though a lot of the cooler tricks are bike specific.

Anyway, I like the syringe idea. I use a Mity-Vac for that, but the syringe would definitely be cheaper.
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« Reply #2 on: November 19, 2009, 08:53:37 AM »


I'll start: To bleed brakes quickly, I use a 60cc cath tip syringe and some surplus tubing. Attach one end of the tubing to the syringe and the other end to the bleed valve, crack the valve and draw back on the syringe. The syringe draws fresh fluid from the reservoir and all air from the line. Tighten the valve and, voila! Brake lines completely bled and free of air. Much cheaper than buying a speed bleeder.



I do the syringe trick too, except I fill it with brake fluid and use it to push the fluid through the bleed valve up to the reservoir.  Air bubbles naturally want to travel upwards anyway.
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« Reply #3 on: November 19, 2009, 09:12:01 AM »




I do the syringe trick too, except I fill it with brake fluid and use it to push the fluid through the bleed valve up to the reservoir.  Air bubbles naturally want to travel upwards anyway.


+ a million! This trick has let me bleed some brake lines that seemed to NEVER yield to conventional methods . . . . . . .
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« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2009, 10:06:14 AM »

I balance my wheels using the axle and two jack stands. I just trued the rim on my xt225 doing this same thing, but placed a level lightly on the rim as I spun it. The wheel isn't perfect, but the rim is straight enough now that I don't feel it when I am riding.  
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« Reply #5 on: November 19, 2009, 12:20:52 PM »




I do the syringe trick too, except I fill it with brake fluid and use it to push the fluid through the bleed valve up to the reservoir.  Air bubbles naturally want to travel upwards anyway.


Wait a minute, doesn't the fluid dump out of the reservoir and all over the place then?  

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« Reply #6 on: November 19, 2009, 12:23:10 PM »




I do the syringe trick too, except I fill it with brake fluid and use it to push the fluid through the bleed valve up to the reservoir.  Air bubbles naturally want to travel upwards anyway.


I like that idea.  I suppose if you start with the reservoir empty and push fluid until it is full, the line will automatically be bled.  Next question is, where do you get a syringe if you are not in the medical field or a junky?  How about a turkey baseter?
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« Reply #7 on: November 19, 2009, 12:48:31 PM »


Next question is, where do you get a syringe if you are not in the medical field or a junky?  How about a turkey baseter?


I found mine from a farm supply store.  I think they're used to administer liquid vitamins and stuff to horses and livestock; not sure.  They were cheap, about $2.50 each.
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« Reply #8 on: November 19, 2009, 01:45:49 PM »

This is a trick i stole from Wheeler, who runs a garage on 129 down by deals gap.

When placing a front tire back on, use the brakes to help allign the wheel and rotors
Put the wheel back on.  
Spin it, then tap the brakes.  Do this a couple times.
Then snug down the bolts on the forks and tighten the axle nut.

(edited,,,accidentally said swing arm instead of forks)
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« Reply #9 on: November 19, 2009, 01:49:18 PM »


This is a trick i stole from Wheeler, who runs a garage on 129 down by deals gap.

When placing a front tire back on, use the brakes to help allign the wheel and rotors
Put the wheel back on.  
Spin it, then tap the brakes.  Do this a couple times.
Then snug down the bolts on the swing arm and tighten the axle nut.


Front tire, swing arm?
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« Reply #10 on: November 19, 2009, 02:09:10 PM »




I like that idea.  I suppose if you start with the reservoir empty and push fluid until it is full, the line will automatically be bled.  Next question is, where do you get a syringe if you are not in the medical field or a junky?  How about a turkey baseter?


I wound up getting 6 on the interwebs for $3.50 -- gave the extras to buddies . . . . .wanted to be there when the opened the envelopes, but missed the chance.
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« Reply #11 on: November 19, 2009, 02:10:01 PM »




Front tire, swing arm?


clearly for the rare front center hub sterring bike . . . . .
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« Reply #12 on: November 19, 2009, 11:37:52 PM »




clearly for the rare front center hub sterring bike . . . . .


Clearly a GTS.
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« Reply #13 on: November 20, 2009, 08:26:17 AM »




clearly for the rare front center hub sterring bike . . . . .


GTS?  No, an F4i.  Not a fan of the GTS even though its a cool looking bike.

Since rotors work with such tight tolerances, its a good idea to make sure everything is centered and happy before tq'ing down the bolts.  Brake calipers included.  
Things will never bolt back on exactly the same way...everything has slop in its tolerancing.  With a front tire the most important thing is that the rotors are well seated in the calipers.  At least in my opinion.
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« Reply #14 on: November 20, 2009, 08:53:44 AM »




Front tire, swing arm?


I think he was referring to you talking about the front tire then later said tighten the swingarm.  I assume you mean the pinch bolts on the bottom of the forks?
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« Reply #15 on: November 20, 2009, 09:02:09 AM »




I do the syringe trick too, except I fill it with brake fluid and use it to push the fluid through the bleed valve up to the reservoir.  Air bubbles naturally want to travel upwards anyway.


I'm still getting my head around this - I'm slow.  Embarassment  When connecting the syringe to the bleeder, is there some volume of air present that would need to be pushed up through the lines?
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« Reply #16 on: November 20, 2009, 09:09:19 AM »

I'd be more apt to pull rather than push - just because I would HATE to overflow the reservoir and deal with the mess/damage.
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« Reply #17 on: November 20, 2009, 09:21:29 AM »




I'm still getting my head around this - I'm slow.  Embarassment  When connecting the syringe to the bleeder, is there some volume of air present that would need to be pushed up through the lines?


Almost certainly yes.

This technique (pushing the fluid up through the lines) is really on effective when you're starting with a dry system (rebuild component or some such) or are planning on completely changing the fluid.

Both of these situations, btw, encompass why I'd be bleeding the system anyway.

If the system isn't dry, you can use the syringe to empty the reservoir of fluid before starting. It IS a bit of a pita to remember to check the reservoir, but not much, and it does such a great job quickly that it's worth the effort, for me.

YMM, clearly, V.
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« Reply #18 on: November 20, 2009, 10:45:56 AM »

Stupid question-

Pushing air up through the lines, doesn't the fluid/air flow get blocked by the master cylinder?  Do you do the syringe trick with the lever engaged?

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Great thread.  Here's two I've found:

1.  When you replace your battery, write the date on the top in marker.  That way you always know how old it is.

2.  When putting in new spark plugs, put a section of rubber tubing over the end and screw it into the engine by turning the tubing.  If you're cross-threaded, the tube will turn but the spark plug won't, which keeps you from having to re-tap your threads.
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« Reply #19 on: November 20, 2009, 10:57:29 AM »

With the lever released, there is a clear and open path from the bleed fitting on the caliper to the reservoir.

This allows fluid from the reservoir to reach the actual master cylinder.

When you squeeze the lever (or depress the pedal), the passage from the reservoir to the cylinder is closed. This keeps the pressure in the cylider/line/caliper, as opposed to pressurizing the reservoir.

So, no, you don't have to squeeze the lever.

Have I made that sufficiently muddy?
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