Friday, May 31, 2013

DAY Nine - Maintenance and Rest in Laramie

This morning the forecast was not good for riding up toward Billings today.

Rig was running like a dog after the cross over from Fort Collins CO to Laramie, WY. I blamed it on the wind at the time. After checking the weather last night and again this morning, decided to stay in Laramie another night; take a day of rest and do minor maintenance.

Checked the air filter. I have not pulled it since it was installed 7000km ago. The K&N air filter is installed in a modified 4" PVC "T" air box I made. It was dirty but not too bad. I noticed there was a lot of dirt around the air box from when I got stuck in the mud and had to back it out using two wheel drive. Went to an auto parts store, bought the K&N recharge kit. They let me use their wash basin as I thought the motel might object if I washed a dirty oily filter in their bathroom. That would leave ring around the basin for sure.

Then I pulled both spark plugs. Had checked both of them just one day ago in Fort Collins. They were fine then. Today both spark plugs are carbon covered. One day later they are black as coal. I have a theory: (you are welcome to voice your opinions here) that the sidewinds were so strong (40+ mph gusts) that it was actually sucking air out of the air box, causing the engine to burn too rich. I was getting hesitations and halting power while fighting the winds on the later part of the ride yesterday. I have smaller main jets with me. But am hesitant to change them as up until now, the rig has been running fine with the 142.5 jets and one shim on the needles. What do you think?

Replaced both plugs. Just to be sure I did not have bad gas, added a half bottle of SeaFoam to the tank.

Darrell commented yesterday that he was missing the plug that covers the timing hole. I looked and mine was gone too. They main reason to have the plug in is to keep rain and moisture out. So rode down to ACE to see what they had. No rubber plugs, but did have a metal disk with prongs that looked like it might work. Bought two, one to use. other as a spare. Put it in, rode back to motel. Upon arrival, looked down and the new plug is gone. Shoot! It was a snug fit so either vibrations or internal pressure popped it out. It is just an opening to the flywheel, should not be any pressure there. Hmm..... Installed second disk and added Gorilla tape, not that I think that will hold on a hot engine. but ...... If I lose the second one, will have to wait until I get to a Ural dealer to buy the correct part. There are no Lowes or Home Depots here, so.....

Late this afternoon I looked closer at the rear pusher tire. Don't think it will go another 1000k before showing threads. So, mounted the spare which has about aa 1000k left on it. Will have to buy another tire before Canada. The last Ural dealer, Reiter's Kawasaki in Billings, hopefully will have a tire for me, but won't be there until Sunday.Will call him tomorrow.

Now to get a hot meal and turn in early. Riding starts at 5:15 am

Nite all.



  1. I'll jump in here, higher elevation and more throttle fighting the wind. Unlikely that wind would be causing a pressure drop in the air cleaner housing. If so, it's a poor design (not likely).

  2. What does the inlet look like and where is it positioned? Or are the plans for the air cleaner online?

  3. Ccjohn

    Some thoughts:

    The filter might look good but could still be clogging, recommendation from two knowledgeable dealers so far is to not oil it at all, the oil filter. Carry a "spare" air filter, like the one you can get via napa pn 7-02204 and swap it in next time she runs like a tired dog and see if it makes a diff.

    As to the timing hole plug disappearing, recommend punching small hole in center, run small gauge wire through and lock in place with a knot. Anchor other end to a convenient anchor point, no more lost plug. Note, it's same plug as the one on inspection hole on rear drum brake.