Minimoto Garage - Preventative Maintenance

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Tech Tips from Racers for Racers
Preventative Maintenance
Big Thanks to BoNewCo for this tip.
Here’s an outline that I use to prepare my bikes for each race. If you follow these steps, it should eliminate poor finishes due to machine problems, DNFs, & worse of all, engine or bike damage. If anyone has anything that I overlooked or that you disagree with, contact me and we can change it or add it to the list.
1. Wash and clean bike and hand check all fasteners. I use non-permanent lock-tite on everything. Common parts to come loose are: head nuts (should be torqued to proper specs), exhaust and muffler bolts, sprocket bolts, body parts, and footpegs. Make sure wheels rotate freely, steering is free and brake calipers are free-floating. Make sure handlebars are properly located (most riders prefer them to be almost straight) and tight. Check air cleaner and carburetor for tightness and cleanliness.

2. Check starter ratchet, rope and pawls.

3. Check radiator, hoses, clamps, and coolant. Make sure coolant is clean. I use a little Redline “Water Wetter” in my coolant. Make sure water pump drive o-ring is good. (W/C only).

4. Check gas tank, line, shut-off and filter (if used). Make sure gas and oil are properly mixed and gas is fresh. I don’t use gas/oil mix if it older than one week.

5. Check or replace plug. You can get an indication of jetting by looking at the plug (should be very light tan) but it has probably changed some when you idle into the pits. A better test is to look at the top of the piston and bottom of head (right, Vince?).

6. Check condition of clutch. Make sure shoes are not too worn and drum is not worn excessively or cracked. Check engagement RPM of clutch. A very handy tool for adjusting clutch engagement RPM and also watching jetting (too lean engines will run hot) is a combination tachometer and temp gauge.

7. Check brakes are working and adjusted properly and not too worn.

8. Check chain tension and condition as well as sprocket condition. Lube chain. My favorite chain lube is Tri-Flow Teflon spray. The chains are small and not “O-ring” so a light lube works better than the heavier chain wax made for big cycles. Also, assure that your gearing is close to where you think it should be.

9. Check tire wear and pressure and valve stems. Be sure to check pressure again right before racing. If you normally run the same track, chances are that your tires will be worn more on one side than the other. Sometimes they can be turned around (swap sprocket and rotor on rear) for some additional wear. Also, be careful when going out on new tires as they will be slippery until they are scuffed.

10. Check bike starts properly and kill switch works.
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