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Thread: Advice on a good mechanic in Christchurch

  1. #1
    Join Date
    10th January 2019 - 12:20
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    1994 Honda Magna VT250
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    Christchurch
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    Advice on a good mechanic in Christchurch

    Hi all,

    Could anyone point me in the direction of a great knowledgable and honest mechanic to service and possibly repair my Magna VT250 in Christchurch?

    I'm hoping it's old fuel or something simple which is causing it to have no power, not even enough to pull out onto a hill. But at the very least she needs a service and the forks are soft. I need to get her going again soon after a couple of years sitting. I have neither space nor time to tackle it myself currently.

    I have found a few recommendations for a Roger from New Brighton on searching these forums but that number is no longer listed so I assume that's a bygone era.

    Thanks in advance.
    Justin

  2. #2
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    25th October 2002 - 17:30
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    Duane at Duane's bikes'n'skis.
    http://www.kiwibiker.co.nz/forums/signaturepics/sigpic31_1.gif

  3. #3
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    14th July 2006 - 21:39
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    If its got old fuel in the tank, drain it completely and refill as a starter. Why pay someone to do that?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    1st September 2007 - 21:01
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    The first thing you do is remove and clean or replace the air filter.

    Next you fit new spark plugs. If budget prevents this ... clean around the electrode [a piece of wire with the end flattened works well] and check plug gap. Google the plug gap if you have to.

    Drain the tank ... or if there isn't much in there ... just fill with fresh fuel. Then with the fuel tap OFF ... drain the Carb(s) and flush with what is in the line from the fuel tap on the tank. Have a few rags under the carb to catch the fuel.

    Tighten the carb drain plugs. Turn fuel tap ON. [Check for leaks in fuel system/lines]

    Then ... Fit helmet and gloves ... and test ride.

    In most cases ... there will be improvement. How much depends on anything else needing done. But ... first things first.
    Sweat wipes off. Road-rash doesn't.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    10th January 2019 - 12:20
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    1994 Honda Magna VT250
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    Christchurch
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    Tried a few things

    Quote Originally Posted by FJRider View Post
    The first thing you do is remove and clean or replace the air filter.

    Next you fit new spark plugs. If budget prevents this ... clean around the electrode [a piece of wire with the end flattened works well] and check plug gap. Google the plug gap if you have to.

    Drain the tank ... or if there isn't much in there ... just fill with fresh fuel. Then with the fuel tap OFF ... drain the Carb(s) and flush with what is in the line from the fuel tap on the tank. Have a few rags under the carb to catch the fuel.

    Tighten the carb drain plugs. Turn fuel tap ON. [Check for leaks in fuel system/lines]

    Then ... Fit helmet and gloves ... and test ride.

    In most cases ... there will be improvement. How much depends on anything else needing done. But ... first things first.
    First off thanks for the advice and thanks to others for their input.

    I've run through the steps you suggested. No change.
    I did make some additional observations:
    • The front cylinder is not firing (the exhaust temp remains at ambient).
    • Front spark plug is firing when checked outside the cylinder.
    • When it starts I cannot get it to rev without very very gently coaxing it up. Then it is quite unstable unless revving fairly high. It also has small backfires when easing off and coming back on the throttle.
    • When I drained the carbs (I tested this twice) the amount of fuel in the front carb is perhaps 1/3 of the amount in the rear.
    • The front spark plug was a little oily / wet and bronzed coloured on the thread when I removed it to put in the new one. However it was also pretty black near the firing area which suggests some sort of rich firing once took place before it now presumably does not fire at all given there is no exhaust temperature increase. Pic attached.


    Any further suggestions worth trying much appreciated.

    This is from the front non working cylinder
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    This is from the working rear cylinder
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  6. #6
    Join Date
    1st September 2007 - 21:01
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pacif13r View Post
    First off thanks for the advice and thanks to others for their input.

    Any further suggestions worth trying much appreciated.
    Sounds like the front carb is getting TOO MUCH fuel. Or ... not enough air. My guess is too much fuel. (hence wet plug)

    First ... I would check the float level settings on both carbs ... match the level in the front one with the rear one. At least ... check first that the two have different levels. And see if the floats movement is smooth and not sticking or jamming during it's movement.

    If they are the same ... adjust it to have it's top of travel a little lower than it was. Small amounts of adjustment each time, and see if there is improvement. Youtube will probably have a vid on how to do this ... or the old fashioned way ... a workshop manual.

    There could be jetting issues too. But ... first things first
    Sweat wipes off. Road-rash doesn't.

  7. #7
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    10th January 2019 - 12:20
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    1994 Honda Magna VT250
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    Christchurch
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    Quote Originally Posted by FJRider View Post
    Sounds like the front carb is getting TOO MUCH fuel. Or ... not enough air. My guess is too much fuel. (hence wet plug)
    First ... I would check the float level settings on both carbs ... match the level in the front one with the rear one. At least ... check first that the two have different levels. And see if the floats movement is smooth and not sticking or jamming during its movement.
    If they are the same ... adjust it to have it's top of travel a little lower than it was. Small amounts of adjustment each time, and see if there is improvement. Youtube will probably have a vid on how to do this ... or the old fashioned way ... a workshop manual.
    There could be jetting issues too. But ... first things first
    Thanks for that.

    I couldn't get to the floats without removing the carbs. So I took the opportunity to dismantle strip and clean everything in the carbs with carb cleaner. Was quite surprised by the inside of the float tank. I checked the float levels. Service Manual doesn't specify how to just specifies 6.8mm. So I found the position the good one measured 6.8mm from the metal seal to the bottom of the float and confirmed that in this position (basically upside down) both where very close to 6.8mm.

    Questions if you have time to answer yet more

    • Are the jets salvageable on the carb from the dead cylinder? They cleaned up pretty well but pitting may make them a write off?
    • Why do my front and rear carbs have visibly different needle thicknesses? Is that a thing? Or did someone mess up a part in a past service with a previous owner? This information is not specified in the service manual for some reason.
    • The service manual says I should replace all the o rings and seals after the carb strip down. Necessary?
    • Where would be the best place to find part numbers and get Honda spares? overseas or local? The Magna VT250CR is a Japanese import as far as I am aware.
    • Should I take further action on the floats? Like your suggestion of adjusting them both to reduce float level given the state of jets or should I reassemble and try after above cleaning steps. It is a pain but I couldn't see any real way of accessing those floats in situ.


    Thank you.
    Justin

    The rear carb (working cylinder) vs front carb (dead cylinder)
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    The front carb after clearing as best I could with carb cleaner and a nylon brush.
    Click image for larger version. 

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  8. #8
    Join Date
    1st September 2007 - 21:01
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pacif13r View Post
    [*]Are the jets salvageable on the carb from the dead cylinder? They cleaned up pretty well but pitting may make them a write off?[*]Why do my front and rear carbs have visibly different needle thicknesses? Is that a thing? Or did someone mess up a part in a past service with a previous owner? This information is not specified in the service manual for some reason.[*]The service manual says I should replace all the o rings and seals after the carb strip down. Necessary? [*]Where would be the best place to find part numbers and get Honda spares? overseas or local? The Magna VT250CR is a Japanese import as far as I am aware.[*]Should I take further action on the floats? Like your suggestion of adjusting them both to reduce float level given the state of jets or should I reassemble and try after above cleaning steps. It is a pain but I couldn't see any real way of accessing those floats in situ.[/LIST]

    Thank you.
    Justin

    [/ATTACH]
    First of all ... well done for doing as much as you have. But acquiring a good hard copy of the workshop manual for your model is very much recommended.

    Just to confirm the issue is on the front cylinder ... put the spark plug from the front in the rear cylinder and the rear one in front ... see if the issue moves cylinders ... (if the problem persists after you reassemble. A simple step but has on many occasion been known to happen). Also check choke butterfly's on both carb's. Check the front one isn't partially closed with the choke off.

    My answers in order of your asking ... and by I'm no means an expert on carb's ... especially on a bike I've never owned.

    : If there is sufficient reason to replace an item that could be causing an issue ... then do so. Obvious pitting on the "dead" cylinder MAY be an issue. Cause for the entire issue is debatable. Pitting should not be creating a big "Too much" fuel issue. Thus the issue might be something else.

    : Read a workshop manual or find spec's for the needle thicknesses ... talk to a bike shop mechanic about that if you can. Ask if you were to order new needles for the bike ... are they the same for front and back cylinder .. ??

    : If the manual says they do ... who are we to argue .. ?? Two or three carb rebuilds in a short period shouldn't be an issue though.

    : A workshop manual should give part numbers.

    :Close to the same level is not the same level. Is there more (or less) travel in the front cylinders float .. ??? Less travel means more fuel getting into the bowel . But before you do make any adjustment ... remove the front float (usually held in place by one pin) and check it is airtight. Fuel inside the float might cause the issue. Fuel inside it will make it Heavier and float lower in the bowel (thus release more fuel and flood the bowel) than the good one. And you can hear the splash of fuel inside it if you shake it.

    Carb's explained ...

    https://www.fix.com/blog/motorcycle-...ht-adjustment/

    Kiwibiker forums ... might help
    https://www.kiwibiker.co.nz/forums/s...50-carb-issues
    Sweat wipes off. Road-rash doesn't.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    9th January 2005 - 22:12
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    Street Triple R
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    christchurch
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pacif13r View Post
    Hi all,

    Could anyone point me in the direction of a great knowledgable and honest mechanic to service and possibly repair my Magna VT250 in Christchurch?

    I'm hoping it's old fuel or something simple which is causing it to have no power, not even enough to pull out onto a hill. But at the very least she needs a service and the forks are soft. I need to get her going again soon after a couple of years sitting. I have neither space nor time to tackle it myself currently.

    I have found a few recommendations for a Roger from New Brighton on searching these forums but that number is no longer listed so I assume that's a bygone era.

    Thanks in advance.
    Justin
    OK, here's a few:

    I have used Duane a few times. Good bloke, knowledgable and reasonably priced. If you are on that side of town definitely go there.


    Rodger from Road and Race is still around I think. That eastern side of town got absolutely hammered and last I heard he was going to work from somewhere near Kaiapoi or Ohoka? I googled it for you (you're welcome) and got this info: 2240 S Eyre Rd, RD6, Rangiora 8083
    Hours: Closed ⋅ Opens 9AM Wed Phone 0210 357 604. He did some really excellent work on my VFR400 when he was in Palmers Road

    If you are in the city then Phil Parish Mechanical. He was working out of the workshop at Mega Motorcycle Centre but I think Dennis and co are just there now. His new address is Unit5/369 Wilsons Road, Waltham Ph 0274 347 747. He really helped me last year with my old CB750.

    I've also used the workshop at First European when I needed stuff for my Street Triple: very good but more expensive.

    Hope thats helpful - as I say, these are guys I have personally interacted with and been happy to pay money to.
    6 grand for 2 grands worth of fun. - F5 Dave

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