Well, the Honda Rebel is Running…

So, I recently bought a 91 Nighthawk, to hopefully ride while I’m getting this Rebel fixed up. I finally put the pieces back together, and while at first it didn’t start because a) dead battery and b) wiring issues, but I got those taken care of and I successfully drove it for a bit today.

I went through the trouble of fixing the threads of the crankshaft, and then torqued the flywheel bolt down, and thought I was great, till I saw that I was missing the spacer plate that goes between the engine side cover and the crankcase. Then I had to take it all apart. I put a generous amount of anti-seize on everything so I figured it’d be easy.

No, of course not.

Knowing that eBay is what it is, there’s always certain risks involved, like shoddy parts, especially when you’re dealing with 30 year old parts off of salvaged bikes. Lucky for me, whoever took that flywheel off used a steel bolt of a harder metal than the flywheel, and ruined the threads inside of the flywheel’s hub. That’s why flywheel pullers are made of softer metal, as I found out.

rebel flywheelAnother Dud Flywheel

I contacted the eBay seller, who said to return it for a refund. That’s generally a great idea, except it’s difficult to remove a flywheel without the puller working it out. But in this case, the cost to repair the problem that I was sold would still be incurred, and then I’d end up paying another chunk of money to send the flywheel back and wait a couple weeks to get another flywheel, so I might, once again, hope for the best. NO. I had to put the bike back together.

So I bought the tap I needed on Amazon this time, rather than paying for a high quality $50 one from a local shop (sorry, local businesses), and threaded in the tool slowly, watching small metal shavings escape from the tight confines of the flywheel. My heart was racing, like it raced when I threaded in the tap for the crankcase, while a sinking feeling accompanied me, expecting myself to fail.

After that, I slowly inserted the flywheel puller, and the flywheel creeped toward me, dropping onto the floor.

sidecover on and wires exposedI did all of the work, and fixed it, and if I wanted a hopefully-not-broken replacement flywheel, then it would cost me another chunk of money and time. I don’t think so. I’ll just have to eat the extra repair cost, by the looks of it, and write off that parts seller.

Putting everything together went decently, but I did have to add in a length of wire so that my neutral worked and I could start the bike without incident. It’s a crappy patch job with my wiring, but it’ll do for now till I can get to the store for the tools to do the job right, along with the rest of my patched wiring.

What I Need to Learn

I’ve realized that most of my electrical work on the bike is amateurish at best. My options are to either replace most of the crap-tastic wiring on the bike, or learn how to actually repair it, which would involve shrink tubing for the repairs, and good connectors for the connection points that I’ve repaired with bullet plugs to replace the OEM ones. Put that on the list, I guess!

I delivered some potatoes to my grandma the other day, and it ran and shifted okay, and didn’t dump oil anywhere. Still have that ticking though. Time to learn how to adjust the valves?

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