Saturday, May 21, 2011

Project Gift Horse: No Going Back From Here

The engine came out this morning. The Haynes manual said, "The engine is not particularly heavy, but is difficult to grasp." The grasping part is easier if you leave the kickstarter on and use it as a handle. The engine sure felt particularly heavy yesterday...before I found the wiring harness and the oil line I'd forgotten to disconnect. Once I did that it just about fell out of the frame.

The registration problem is as yet unresolved, but yesterday I talked to a machinist who is into restoring old cars and motorcycles. He has a bead-blasting cabinet he's willing to let me use for cheap, and a sandblasting rig I can use on the frame. A thread I started on an internet forum warned me off media blasting to clean up aluminum engine parts, suggesting hot-tanking instead. The machinist tells me he's bead-blasted motorcycle engines for years and never had a problem; meticulous clean-up is important, but not difficult. Besides, I really like the look of bead-blasted engines.

That's still in the future, though. The next job is to tear down the engine to see what the insides look like. As previously mentioned, I intend to rebuild it to stock specs, so I'll be looking to reuse everything that isn't worn out.

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