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What to check before riding a bike that has been sitting for over a year

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I've been on hiatus from riding for about a year and a half now but will be getting the chance to take the bike to the woods soon. What things would you check on or do to the bike before riding it? Everything was in good condition when I put it away, but I don't want to make the mistake of assuming it's ready to ride without some work.

 

I'm planning to check the following:

1. air filter - to make sure it isn't falling apart, is clean, and oiled 

2. change transmission oil (just a precaution... it was changed before being stored)

3. check/replace brake pads

4. make sure all leftover gas is drained (there shouldn't be any, but I will check again)

5. check bearings (wheels, steering stem, linkage, etc.)

6. check for leaking fork seals

 

Is there anything I've missed? 

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I've been on hiatus from riding for about a year and a half now but will be getting the chance to take the bike to the woods soon. What things would you check on or do to the bike before riding it? Everything was in good condition when I put it away, but I don't want to make the mistake of assuming it's ready to ride without some work.

 

I'm planning to check the following:

1. air filter - to make sure it isn't falling apart, is clean, and oiled 

2. change transmission oil (just a precaution... it was changed before being stored)

3. check/replace brake pads

4. make sure all leftover gas is drained (there shouldn't be any, but I will check again)

5. check bearings (wheels, steering stem, linkage, etc.)

6. check for leaking fork seals

 

Is there anything I've missed? 

 

Not really. Check coolant level too. 

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Basically give it full maintenance starting from the front to back.  Go over it with a fine brush and comb.  I usually first sit there and talk to it for a while after I get my mind set.  Really, I'll sit there and look over the bike from port to stern writing it all up, then do it again a second time.  Start with taking off the seat and plates, and really get in there.  You might find other issues you never knew existed, like missing or loose bolts.  Throw us a picture of that bad boy too if you have a chance.  :devil:

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Basically give it full maintenance starting from the front to back.  Go over it with a fine brush and comb.  I usually first sit there and talk to it for a while after I get my mind set.  Really, I'll sit there and look over the bike from port to stern writing it all up, then do it again a second time.  Start with taking off the seat and plates, and really get in there.  You might find other issues you never knew existed, like missing or loose bolts.  Throw us a picture of that bad boy too if you have a chance.  :devil:

I'll see about getting a picture when I get a chance to take one. I'm currently several thousand miles from the bike (in the UK). I'm just making a list of things a week or so ahead of time to try not to miss anything. 

 

checking for loose bolts is also going on the list

 

thanks for the suggestions

 

Edit: Part of what I said didn't make sense

Edited by Drtbikerider250
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OP, you have a good list there but I can add 1 thing.  Whether the carb was drained or not a year ago, I'd do this since you really never get 100% of the fuel out of a carb if you run it until it stops - Hopefully, the carb has a drain screw?  Pull the screw out and let a little fresh gas flow through the bowl and out the screw.   If it's not too big of a PITA, can you take the bowl off and check for crud?  With the crap pump gas that's sold (ethanol), I think in a year you may have some semi-solid crud forming.

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OP, you have a good list there but I can add 1 thing.  Whether the carb was drained or not a year ago, I'd do this since you really never get 100% of the fuel out of a carb if you run it until it stops - Hopefully, the carb has a drain screw?  Pull the screw out and let a little fresh gas flow through the bowl and out the screw.   If it's not too big of a PITA, can you take the bowl off and check for crud?  With the crap pump gas that's sold (ethanol), I think in a year you may have some semi-solid crud forming.

Good carb cleaning never hurt anyone  :thumbsup:

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OP, you have a good list there but I can add 1 thing.  Whether the carb was drained or not a year ago, I'd do this since you really never get 100% of the fuel out of a carb if you run it until it stops - Hopefully, the carb has a drain screw?  Pull the screw out and let a little fresh gas flow through the bowl and out the screw.   If it's not too big of a PITA, can you take the bowl off and check for crud?  With the crap pump gas that's sold (ethanol), I think in a year you may have some semi-solid crud forming.

 

Great suggestion. I would have never though of that otherwise. I will have several days to work on it if needed, so pulling the bowl shouldn't be a problem. If I remember correctly, it's pretty easy to get off anyway. 

 

 

as requested in an earlier reply, here is an older picture of the bike from a few years ago. it was still pretty new when this was taken.

2006yz250.jpg

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I've been on hiatus from riding for about a year and a half now but will be getting the chance to take the bike to the woods soon. What things would you check on or do to the bike before riding it? Everything was in good condition when I put it away, but I don't want to make the mistake of assuming it's ready to ride without some work.

 

I'm planning to check the following:

1. air filter - to make sure it isn't falling apart, is clean, and oiled 

2. change transmission oil (just a precaution... it was changed before being stored)

3. check/replace brake pads

4. make sure all leftover gas is drained (there shouldn't be any, but I will check again)

5. check bearings (wheels, steering stem, linkage, etc.)

6. check for leaking fork seals

 

Is there anything I've missed? 

 

One more thing you should add to your list is to check the spokes.

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