Table of contents:
- Spring came! There is less and less snow and more clean asphalt. "Why don't I leave already?" - itches in the head of every motorcyclist. The classic situation is with an angel and a demon whispering over the shoulder. One: “Come on, back up, let's go!”, And the other - “Stay at home! It's too early…”It's really early to go. After all, you first need to prepare the motorcycle for the first ride. Here's how to do it
- 1. Inspect the motorcycle
- 2. Connect the battery
- 3. Check tires
- 4. Change oil and filters
- 5. Check the brakes
- 6. Pay attention to the drive
- 7. Listen to your feelings
Spring came! There is less and less snow and more clean asphalt. "Why don't I leave already?" - itches in the head of every motorcyclist. The classic situation is with an angel and a demon whispering over the shoulder. One: “Come on, back up, let's go!”, And the other - “Stay at home! It's too early…”It's really early to go. After all, you first need to prepare the motorcycle for the first ride. Here's how to do it
Of course, the easiest way is to get your phone and call specially trained people. Perhaps you have no idea how many people are willing to take on all your problems. They will come by car, load your motorcycle into it, take it to the service, do everything that is supposed to be done, and even a little more. Then they will bring you back, and all you have to do is flash a card and you can sit in the saddle - "give the command to the brothers, raising your fist up."
If something in this ideal picture of the world does not grow together - for example, there is no phone of those very special people, free money or a credit card at hand, then you will have to do everything yourself. There are many recipes for preparing for the first spring trip, and we will tell you about the most important.
1. Inspect the motorcycle
They took off the cover, walked around in a circle, looked: are there any oil stains or smudges of any other liquids on the ground? Most likely they will not be - if nothing flowed in the fall, then it is unlikely to flow in the winter, when the motorcycle is stationary.
It makes sense to rock the bike on the suspension - let the stagnant shock absorbers work, drive the oil. Feel the shiny parts of the front fork stays and rear shock rods (if available) with your hand. Feel like there is oil left on them? This is not good - perhaps the oil seals are dry and you will have to contact the service. Dry? Hence, there is no reason for concern.
Look for signs of rat activity. Alas, rodents are the realities of underground garages and parking lots. If there are traces, carefully inspect all wiring. A gnawed wire can make your life very difficult. It is advisable to find a violation of insulation even before you put the terminal on the battery.
2. Connect the battery
If in the fall, putting the motorcycle on a joke, you forgot to throw off the terminal from the battery, then immediately remove the battery and carry it for charging. And if you did everything right and disconnected the battery before wintering, then you can try to start the motorcycle. You might be in luck.
We put on the terminal, turn on the ignition … There are no signs of life? To charge! Yes - we turn the starter. If he cranks the engine, but it does not start, you can "light" from another motorcycle, car or specially brought with you a spare battery or booster. When the engine starts, the motorcycle should be rolled out into the street and allowed to idle for 20-30 minutes. With a working generator, this is quite enough to invigorate a stagnant battery.
If you have an old carburetor model, then before starting the motorcycle, check: whether the gas tank tap is open and pump up gasoline. You don't need to do this on injection motorcycles.
3. Check tires
The battery is alive, the engine is warmed up - can I go? First you need to carefully inspect the tires and check the pressure in them. Over the winter, it could have fallen heavily. If this happens, you need to look for the reason: undercutting along the edge of the rim, leakage from the nipple, or a nail or self-tapping screw sticking out somewhere in the tire. The problem, of course, needs to be eliminated. What pressure is normal - you can see the instructions for the motorcycle. If it is not there, then look on the Internet or pump at least 2.5 atm.
At the same time, you can assess the condition of the tires as a whole. As a rule, in the fall, before the season closes, no one changes the tires - everyone tries to drive the old one before winter. But in the spring it's time to do it.According to traffic rules, the permissible residual tread depth of a motorcycle tire must be at least 0.8 mm. To be honest, this is not even enough. But the main problem of worn-out motorcycle rubber is not even a worn out tread, but a violation of the profile geometry. The tire must be round in cross section! And when its central part is erased, the circle tends to turn into a square or rectangle. If it becomes noticeable even with the naked eye, then it's time to change the tire. It's not worth talking about cracks, cuts or cords sticking out of the rubber - just go to the trash heap!
4. Change oil and filters
Now that you are convinced that the wheels are in order, you can go. But not far - to the nearest service or workshop to change the oil. Some people prefer to do this in the fall, before storing the motorcycle, but this is not correct. During the winter, the new oil will certainly oxidize and lose some of its beneficial properties. Therefore, it is better to postpone the replacement to the spring. You don't even need to check the oil level after wintering: what's the difference? All the same, merge and change. Naturally, together with a filter. Everything is like in a car.
Remember to replace the air filter at the same time. And after removing the old one, be sure to scoop out all the dirt and sand that has accumulated there from the airbox (the container where it was installed).
5. Check the brakes
Actually, a motorcycle maintenance plan includes many things - just like a car. But we want to go as soon as possible? Therefore, we dwell only on the essentials.
It is important to pay attention to the brake fluid level and the condition of the brake pads. Moreover, it is best to check the density of the liquid with a special device. The fact is that it is very hygroscopic and absorbs moisture. And the more water in the brake fluid, the lower the boiling point becomes. Boil - you will be left without brakes!
And one more thing: on modern motorcycles with advanced ABS systems, changing brake fluid is not the easiest operation, so it is better to entrust it to specialists.
But the condition of the brake pads can be assessed independently - by eye. And do not be alarmed if their thickness is only 2-3 millimeters. It's not scary, they still look like. Motorcycle pads are initially much thinner than car pads, so three millimeters is still possible to live, but one is already bad. By the way, changing them is not difficult at all. You can handle it if you want!
6. Pay attention to the drive
If your motorcycle has a chain, it will not be superfluous to check its tension. Sagging is normal, but it increases over time. And the chain stretched like a string will very quickly come out of standing, and at the same time kill the leading and driven stars.
The sag is determined by eye, approximately halfway between the stars. It is enough just to pick up the chain with your finger at the lowest point and lift it all the way up. The amplitude of the movement should be no more than 3-4 cm. Otherwise, it is necessary to tighten. This is usually done by moving the rear wheel along the guide slots in the swingarm. We loosen the fasteners and move the wheel back - the chain, accordingly, is tightened. We tighten the nuts back and you can go.
Worse, if there is nowhere to move the wheel, then you have to buy a new chain. There are, of course, craftsmen who cut the old one by a couple of links and put it back, but this is a bad decision. If the chain is stretched so much, it is better not to experiment anymore - in the worst case, it can break on the go, and even jam the wheel …
Much the same applies to the drive belt, which is used instead of a chain, for example, on Harley-Davidson motorcycles. The only difference is that its permissible sagging is much less - up to 2 cm.
But the condition of the cardan drive, as for example on many BMW models, can only be checked during disassembly in a workshop. You yourself will not see anything there.
7. Listen to your feelings
Now you can definitely go! But carefully, listening to the motorcycle's behavior and your own feelings. Let's say a dangerous backlash has appeared somewhere in the bearings - in the steering column or in the wheel hubs. In the fall, you most likely would not have noticed it. Simply because such defects progress slowly and a motorcyclist who drives every day has time to get used to them. And in the end, he doesn't feel any changes.
But when you lose the habit of a motorcycle during the winter, you will immediately notice that something is wrong somewhere. Listen to your feelings - the first kilometers are the most revealing. If something bothers you, do not blame it on suspiciousness, but be sure to check and establish the reason. Remember that a crumbled steering column bearing may well cost life in an unfavorable set of circumstances. Be careful. And - have a good motorcycle season!