It’s been a fortnight of fault finding & finishing here at mono motorcycles.
Some of the motorcycles we welcome to the mono motorcycles workshop join us a for a short time, their issue or service is resolved/complete & they head off home.
However, some of the bikes we welcome are not so straight forward, can have multiple faults & can subsequently spend a little longer in our company.
As we welcome in the new year the first fortnight of 2023 has certainly been one of fault finding & finishing.
Regular followers & readers of the mono motorcycles blogs will remember the BMW K75 which Daniel brought back to life before Christmas.
The bike had been ‘elsewhere’ for another establishment to identify why when the customer had rebuilt the engine & refitted the wiring loom, the bike had no spark. Unfortunately, the BMW resided at the other establishment for a year with no progress having been made.
When the bike joined us at mono motorcycles, Daniel found many of the plugs in the loom had been plugged in incorrectly, some not connected at all & other faults with the electrical systems.
As Daniel got more involved with the project & made the correct connections, repaired wires & sorted plugs; he also found the bikes spark & got the bike running.
Unfortunately, despite all of the work Daniel had done & the fact that it appeared to have resolved the issues – namely having no spark; the bike’s wiring caught fire on it’s first test run from an unidentified fault, hitherto unknown to us at mono motorcycles.
Having managed to get the bike back to the workshop safely, under investigation Daniel found one of the main block connectors had been forcibly pushed together incorrectly (not part of our initial work to get the bike running) & whatever surge of current with the bike under load, had burnt the wires either side, fused the block together & burnt the switchgear completely out.
Having had to strip out the entire wiring loom, identify the burnt components & wires, make extensive repairs to the wiring loom, refit & replace the burnt-out switchgear; the BMW has today finally passed an MOT & is getting ready to re-join it’s owner.
NB: Motorcycle wiring is the equivalent to a human nervous system. Therefore, if it is not looked after, wired properly or safely, you can run into trouble. If wires are broken, brittle, incorrectly wired, dangerously wired, resting against metal, exposed to water, trapped, house wire has been used, incorrect core wire has been used, relays not fitted where they are absolutely necessary or earth wires attached to plastic or paint; you can end up with energy/current overload leading to component failure or in the case of some bikes we have seen recently, a fire. Also, if the wire used does not have the correct conductivity or is not robust enough for the energy/current produced by a bike, this can overload the system.
If you are uncertain of wiring but carry on regardless, if you think it will be OK & hope for the best or if you watch a YouTube video made by an expert & think you can copy them; you could be on track for wiring overload, component failure or in the worst case, wires burning out. These problems may not present themselves immediately, but could do so when you put your bike under load or turn the lights on.
If you are worried about wiring your own bike & or have a wiring fault, it might be best to seek professional help in the first instance. Not only will this ensure your bike wiring is being cared for by an expert, but you could save yourself a hefty bill down the line if your wiring loom catches fire.
Please note: if a wiring loom catches fire, it is not isolated to that one part of the loom. The surge of energy from a wiring fire (dead short) can fry components like regulator rectifiers, ECU’s & stators, not to mention the fact that it could mean an entirely new wiring loom is required.
Daniel Morris is a motorcycle wiring expert specialising in motogadget wiring. If you would like to speak to him about an upcoming project, please do email us with details of your bike, what the project looks like & what kind of wiring options you had in mind. E: email@example.com
The BMW K1200 has re-joined us to assess the misfire. Thus far the misfire has at least three faults all masking each other & impacting each other.
Having replaced the plugs during the bikes last visit, this made no difference to the misfire. Daniel replaced a couple of HT leads, but this did not make a difference.
With a more detailed description from our customer of how the bike smoked on start up after a few days not being ridden, Daniel suspected that it could be an injector fault.
When Daniel cleaned out the injectors, two of them spat black sooty looking debris out of them. When refitted, the fault cleared momentarily & then returned.
Under discussion with our customer, he agreed for us to purchase an injector rail from a breaker.
Once the injectors arrived & had been fitted, the misfire seemed to go. Once the bike was ridden, it returned.
As the misfire presented itself as a stuttering sound at low revs, it was then suspected that the coil could be breaking down.
Although we began to realise it was most likely the coil, the TPS was also causing a low end misfire. With both of those components totally over £500, it was an educated guess as to which one to purchase.
Again, under consultation with our customer we then ordered a coil for £65 from a breakers.
Once the coil arrived & was fitted, the misfire/hesitation had gone. On the final test ride the bike ran smoothly.
During Summer 2021 our customer had noted that the CBR would only run with the choke on & if not, the bike would cut out. After a ride out, he discovered fuel pouring out of the fuel pump. Having replaced the fuel pump & relay the bike then no longer started.
When the bike joined us in early January, the fuel was very stale, meaning that it had been in the bike for a very long time.
Daniel initially managed to get the bike running having fitted a new set of plugs, feeding fuel directly into the carbs & running off the remote tank; but it was evident that the CBR was very much in need of a full carb strip, rebuild, balance, fuel tank drain, new fuel filter, the works.
Having spoken to our customer & gained his authorisation to proceed, the carbs were then removed by Oaklie.
As can be seen from the photographs, the inside of the float bowls & the jets were green. This is usually the result of lengthy exposure to stale fuel & or a bike having been sat for some considerable time. In this case, a year & a half.
Oaklie then stripped, ultrasonically cleaned & rebuilt the carbs using all new parts & the transformation was incredible.
As part of the cleaning process & to ensure every drop of stale fuel was removed; the fuel tank was completely drained of fuel & given a tank flush prior to being ready for refitting.
Once the carbs were back on the bike, it was initially run up on the remote tank. Once the carbs were balanced, the tank was fitted & the bike was taken for a road test. It ran smoothly & when we let our customer know, he was a very happy man.
Our customer then asked if we could arrange an MOT as this had run out in June 2022. The bike has subsequently passed the MOT & is now ready to go home.
KTM 990 Adventure
The KTM 990 Adventure was a non-start at receipt. The customer advised that following a ride out before Christmas, the bike simply stopped & he could hear that the fuel pump was not priming.
From his initial assessments using TEXA, checking voltages, making physical checks in the wiring & connectors; Daniel found that the main power relay pin connections were all corroded & therefore needed replacing.
Once Daniel managed to get the fuel pump apart, he found what looked like congealed sludgy fuel in the bottom. This had somehow got past the fuel filter. Having spoken to the customer he advised that the bike had stopped when it was snowing & the extreme cold could have been partly the cause of crystals forming in the fuel pump, the fuel congealing & stopping it from being able to function correctly.
Having removed the contaminated fuel & made repairs to the fuel pump; it was then priming. Once new filters & seals were fitted, the fuel pump primed, the bike would turn over, but it would still not start.
A voltage drop identified at the pump caused by low voltage from the main relay which supplies the fuel, was found to have been caused by corrosion.
We then replaced the relays & we still had over 1.5 volt drop from the pump. Further investigation found the ignition switch wire corroded as well.
We therefore cut back the wires & made new connections. The pump & relay then worked, but the bike would only fire for two seconds then stop.
Daniel then checked earth & supply wires for corrosion, which were then cleaned & repaired. He then pulled the plugs with were black, so these were replaced.
However, what was the cause of the non-start? The pump? The relay The filter? The wiring? Maybe I was overthinking it, but with so many issues it’s amazing it ran at all.
On Friday, Daniel squirted a small amount of fuel down the intake & the bike fired up & ran for a few seconds. This led Daniel back to look at the fuel, as he suspected low fuel pressure. Where Daniel had had the pump apart, the plastic tag had pinged off the metal part of the pump & although Daniel had fuel pressure, it wasn’t enough to run the engine.
With the clip adjusted, Daniel then put some locking wire around it & it was repaired.
Once the pump was re-fitted the bike ran. Having taken it for a test ride, the KTM is now ready to go home.
On test ride Daniel identified a slight misfire & under consultation with our customer we advised that it could be down to valve clearances being overdue, maybe a blocked injector, bad fuel or possibly a fouled plug.
Our customer authorised us to undertake a thorough investigation. Therefore, Daniel first checked the valve clearances (this involves dropping the radiator out) & cleaned the injectors.
He noted that the front of the oil cooler was clogged with thick mud & road debris, as was the radiator. He cleaned both out & suspected that the ‘hot smell’ might have been the excessively clogged oil cooler & radiator fins.
Daniel then changed the plugs, oil, oil filter, cleaned & re-oiled the K&N air filter & checked the fuel to ensure all bases were covered.
Having removed the forks & replaced the fork oil, cleaned & ACF50’d the bike, he took it out for a test ride & it road beautifully, misfire had gone.
The Triumph Trophy we welcomed on Wednesday 11.01.2023 had a fault with the cruise control which doesn’t work & the ABS light was on because the duel brake light circuit had been damaged.
Daniel repaired the wires, but when he tested the system, there was no voltage to the ABS side of the switch. At the time of writing this one is also ongoing.
Sometimes what appears to be one issue with a bike, can actually be several problems all masking each other & contributing to faults stacking up. Although TEXA diagnostics can diagnose some of the faults some new bikes exhibit, sometimes it is not possible to use this format & this is where Daniel’s expertise & 30+ years in the industry come into their own.
Daniels Triumph Thruxton R on the Dunlop stand, MCN Bike Show, Excel, London 17th-19th February, 2023
Daniels bike is on it’s way to the MCN Show at the Excel, London. We are so very pleased to have been asked by Dunlop UK if they can use Daniels Triumph Thruxton R once it has been customised for their stand at the show.
Our first session being run on Saturday 4th February is now fully booked. Due to the popularity of the session, we are advertising a second session on Saturday 11th March.
Join us to discuss your service, repair or wiring needs for 2023 & beyond at the mono motorcycles workshop New Barn Offices, Funtington, PO18 9DA
Coffee & Tea £1.00
Sunday 23rd April 2023 Breakfast Club is back!
Join us for a hearty breakfast, catch up with friends, or drop in for a pit-stop!
Location: mono motorcycles, Row C, Unit 4-5 New Barn Offices, Funtington, Chichester, PO18 9DA
Our second Custom & Classic Bike Show is already planned for Sunday 18th June 2023. We are already taking registrations for motorcycles in a variety of categories:
Best in Show, Best Paint, Best Custom, Best Cafe Racer, Best Bobber, Best flat tracker/scrambler, Best Modern Classic (any fully restored modern classic 1970-1999), Mini Mayhem (Fully restored classic or custom under 200cc), Best eBike Custom (fully electric motorcycle)
Register your bike by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with a description of the bike, at least 4 photographs of the front, sides & rear & which category you wish to enter.
We are also looking for an eclectic selection of trade for the show & therefore if you or anyone you know is interested in bringing your business to the show, please do contact Katy in the first instance by emailing email@example.com for more information
Check out our Facebook & Instagram feeds for regular updates
As always for all your motorcycling needs, please do contact Daniel or Katy on T: 01243 576212 / 07899 654446 or contact us through our contact page.