Maintenance, maintenance….

Finally I received my numberplates and could ride the bike officially. I had already ordered new tyres for the old ones were really old (11 years). I printed the relevant pages of the repair manual and started to remove the front and rear wheel. The front wheel was easy, but the real wheel gave me a hard time. When I had it out, I spotted that the parts of the final drive flange were rusty and completely dry.

The final drive flange. Where is all the grease that's supposed to lubricate??

The final drive flange. Where is all the grease that’s supposed to lubricate here??

A quick look in the service papers did not reveal any evidence that the wheel was removed in the last 11 years. The bike was initially sold and serviced at Honda in Germany, but when it was registered in Belgium, the “services” were done in no-name garages. The most important maintenance was apparently done (oil changes, filter changes etc), but I wonder if the bike was always maintained according to the Honda maintenance plan. The bike appears to be in good condition, but I realised that I need to do a lot of (preventive) maintenance in the next months. A checklist will be a good idea.

Now that's better...

Now that’s better…

Luckily, the repair manual gives detailled information how to lubricate what and with what. I cleaned all the dry, rusty parts as good as I could. The female part of the drive flange was difficult to clean, for a perfect result one would have to disassemble the final drive. But this not really necessary, my cleaning was already a big improvement. Luckily the parts were not really affected by this lack of maintenance. I cleaned all part, applied MoS2 grease where necessary and assembled the rear wheel and placed it back.

Clean and greasy - ready for assembly.

Clean and greasy – ready for assembly.

I have already ordered a full set of brake and clutch tubes, 18 year old rubber is not the best to maintain a good pressure. Other things have to follow. While the rear wheel was removed, I inspected the most critical part of the frame: the swingarm. Mud and dirt get disposed there and many STs have the problem that swingarm get so rusty that it needs to be replaced (expensive) or welded (quite some work). Like the exhaust, the swingarm only shows some superfial rust. So my first impression was right.

Only very light, superficial corrosion of the swingarm - good!

Only very light, superficial corrosion of the swingarm – good!

I did some test rides and was very pleased with the new BT023 tyres. They give a good confidence and I soon made the footpegs scratch on the tarmac. I visited the next Honda workshop and arranged a change of the totally damaged steering bearing this week.

Lots of ideas for maintenance and farkling, interesting times ahead!

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