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Philip's Ravings

My first time servicing a bike

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Well I decided to take the plunge and start doing simple servicing on my bike, a Honda CBR600.

The first step was laying my hands on a service manual. This tells you what needs to be done when. The Honda manual also identified stuff by difficulty, so I've decided I'm going to start doing the basic stuff, and only use a bike mechanic for those difficult jobs, or those jobs requiring expensive specialist tools.

So this weekend I set about changing the oil and oil filter.
I headed down to Cycletreads in Takapuna (Auckland). I told them it was my first time servicing my bike, and I needed some help. They showed me how to look up which oil filter to use, and then helped with oil selection (ended up going with a semi-synthetic middle of the road oil).
I also got a special tool that goes on the end of a wrench which is used to remove/install the oil filter.

Next was a trip to Repco to buy a torque wrench. I also got an tray to collect the oil in, and a "spout" to make pouring the oil in easier.

Then finally I headed home. I read over the instructions a couple of times to make sure everything was clear in my head.

Next came the most difficult bit. Getting the fairings off. I slowly worked through the instructions in the service manual, and after about 2 hours I had them completely off (will probably only take 10 mins next time!). I was making sure to note which kinds of bolts went where, and putting them carefully aside so as to lose nothing.

The service manual said to warm the engine up before changing the oil. So I started the bike up and left it running.

While the engine was warming up I decided to wash both sides of the fairings. They are so much easier to clean when they are off the bike.

By the time I had done the fairings the temperature gauge showed the engine was at normal working temperature. I turned the bike off, put the tray under the bike, and removed the sump plug. I then removed the plug where you put the oil in, and proceeded to remove the oil filter.

I probably left everything draining out of the bike for about at hour.

When I came back I got the new oil filter out, put some new oil on its black gasket, and then screwed it back on. I finished it off with the torque wrench, as recommend in the service manual.

Next I put the sump plug back in, with the torque wrench again.

The service manual said to put in 3.3 litres of oil. The side of the oil container had a strip showing how much oil was in the container. So I got the funnel and then put in roughly 3.3 litres.
Shortly after adding the oil I was thinking I probably shouldn't have put the whole lot in straight away in case it was too much. Too late now.

The service manual said to put the bike on its centre stand now on a level service and start the bike up. I took a quick peak at the oil sight glass before starting, and it was completely full. Was wonderng if I had done a cock up now.

I cleaned up the excess oil form as many bits as I could.

Anyway started the bike, and after about three minutes the oil level in the site glass had lowered down to about half way. Some of the old oil had gotten on the exhaust when I removed the old oil filter, and it was now smoking nicely. Gave the bike some revs and it soon all burned off.
I let the bike run for a couple more minutes and then turned it off. After about another three minutes the sight glass filled back up to the full line. Checked it a bit later and it had remained at that level. Yay, the perfect amount of oil.

I put the fairing back on again. And that concluded my experience of my first bike service. I have to say the idea of doing the service was worse than the actual execution. Next time will be so much easier.

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