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About julienSF

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  1. Can a paper gasket be damaged by a side impact? I've certainly bashed my engine against a rock and I started developing a coolant leak between the clutch cover case and the engine case (Husq. FE350 2016). The case and the cover appear intact, no cracks, just a very slow leak between the cover and the case. I'm tired of smelling burning coolant so I'll replace it no matter what. Just curious to know if crushing a gasket is possible.
  2. I've designed mountain bike trails and multi-use trails and occasionally worked with International Mountain Bicycling Association, and I was a mountain biking instructor for years. After 30 years of intense cycling and after an injury I switched to dirt bikes and I now ride the same type of narrow single tracks I used to ride on a MTB. I understand pretty well a mountain biker's mindset and the issues related to multi-use trails. So here is a way to look at things and discuss with mountain bikers. First: The "honest tax paying citizen right to have fun" argument. I've heard this argument again and again in town hall meetings about trail access for mountain bikes. it has no weight against "a majority of taxpaying citizens doesn't want a minority of tax paying citizens to bother them when they're having fun!". Pedestrians win over mountain bikers, and both win over dirtbike riders. The problem with the taxpayer argument is that recreation trails on public land in the US are maybe paid for with tax money but they also come to existence as the result of years of lobbying efforts from the community that gets them built. Mountain bikers often spend years convincing the local authorities (park, county, property owners) to get a trail made. So when somehow the trail is shared with dirt bikes and ruts and whoops start appearing everywhere mountain bikers get rightfully pissed off. What's happening between MTBikers and dirtbike riders is similar to what's happening between dirtbike riders and ATV riders, but also between skiers and snowboarders, kite surfers and windsurfers, skaters and scooters: a limited playground for similar activities result in a fight for territory. Whoever was there first tend to prevent the second to join. Now it doesn't mean we shouldn't be riding where we're allowed to. If you're riding a popular MTB trail just ride it as gently as possible - don't roost, don't skid. Also, it's common sense to avoid speeding up near trailheads to prevent running into pedestrians of cyclists. Don't rev your engine in the staging area. Don't get on the pipe as soon as you've passed cyclists or pedestrians. I'm sure you're aware of all of this already and that's the best argument to get tolerated. There are going to be haters, it doesn't mean all hikers and mountain bikers are haters. But haters will league against us everytime they can. That's why we need to actively show goodwill: advocating good riding etiquette and getting involved with trail maintenance initiatives and ride as far away as possible from densely populated areas is certainly the best course of action.
  3. I did pretty much all the mods recommended by Best Dual Sport (www.ktmandhusky.com) for my 2016 FE350s and the bike is greatly improved from stock. The "s" model (dual sport) comes with a very lean MAP to comply with US environmental regulations, you may have the offroad version which probably has a different MAP. But, no matter what stock map you have you should try playing with the TPS (and the idle) to improve your bike's performance without spending much. The TPS adjustment let you "amplify" the signal sent to the injector by the ECU and make the bike run richer on a stock MAP. It works great. The bike might run too rich when the throttle is in the 90-100% range but no one is consistently riding in this range. I did multiple adjustments to the TPS as I got more familiar with the bike, the differences were noticeable each time. I also made other mods which were recommended: new fuel rail, modified air intake tube, new exhaust grunt and exhaust end cap. All of which help with fuel and exhaust velocity. I was often told the bike sounds like a 500. Powerwise it's considerably more aggressive than stock, yet it is still very progressive and manageable. I don't know how it compares to a non-dual sport model as I have never ridden one - I only tries 2 strokes so no relevant comparison there. But it as enough torque to let me crawl my way up looping steep hill climbs in second gear (gearing: 14X52). I have an 80 miles range on my sock fuel tank, so maybe 10% less range than stock. I may eventually consider a Vortex ECU because Best Dual Sport sells them calibrated to the mods I got from them. I would guess the Vortex ECU has a range of preset specific to the "power components" of a bike (fuel rail, exhaust, cam), without these presets the bike needs to be tuned with a dyno by someone who knows what he's doing. Consequently getting a Vortex ECU cost likely more than just the ECU.
  4. I went from Yamaha WR250 to FE350. The FE350s is basically the same bike as FE250 (frame, suspension, etc...) but with just a little more power. I use it 90% off road and I'm riding it a little bit in San Francisco where I live. It's set up like a dirt bike so not really ideal for the street. Mine is set up for dirt with a 13X52 gearing and I'm ringing it going 70mph on the freeway, the stock gearing is more street friendly but won't cope as well with steep trail climbs. You will bake your butt at traffic lights because the engine and exhaust heat comes straight up. The saddle is not meant to remain seated on for more than 2 minutes and you'll end up with a numb crutch from the vibrations anyway. I'm 5'10 and i'm barely touching the ground at stop signs (big dirt tires) and I'm cramped on the bike while seating. It's difficult to park it on a slope without risking tipping it over because the bike seats high when no one is on it. The cops are constantly watching you. And finally it's a very popular bike among teenage bike thieves. The Huskies FEs and KTM EXC-f are lightweight dirt bikes with a disposable emission system that wins you a plate so you can ride highways between trail networks. Also the FE "s" version run like crap out of the box because of the emission friendly engine map (TPS tuning is the easiest way to remedy that). But it's relatively easy to modify to gain power and throttle response and bring it to the level it's green sticker counterpart - the FE without an "s". So a 250s or a 350s would only be a smaller version of the bike you already have. Its lighter weight (overrated) and the smaller engine size would only be relevant on single tracks. A DRZ400 or WR250R would be far better do-it-all bikes. less maintenance, cheaper and more after market options.
  5. If the question is to evaluate "radiator guards or no radiator guards" the answer is: radiator guards no matter what Husqvarna says. Straightening a radiator is a pain and most guards will free you from ever having to do it. It's beyond my understanding why enduro bikes don't come with guards straight from the factory.
  6. Kristofsx.com - $10 donation via Paypal. They should have the 2017 repair manual. I got the 2016 FE350s there.
  7. Dead blow hammer all around until you get a small gap between the can and the cap. The tap on that edge using a piece of hard wood or hard plastic tool. Or pry it out with a plastic tool like the ones used for car interior body work. I did it with the can was still attached to the bike.
  8. SOLVED! I have finally managed to split the case. And I found one remaining chunk of metal, the least damaged of all the ones I found. I took the transmission gear out, took them appart, looked all over the case again, then I went back in disassembling order to look for a broken part I would have missed. And then I got to the alternator cover and noticed that it had the same color, and same material. It was the freaking external clutch cover!!! But not the one currently on the bike. The guy I bought the bike from had crashed the bike on the left side, I knew because he said it an the radiator was a little bashed and the left shroud was slightly damaged. But he didn't say he also broke the clutch cover and replaced it. The bike had a brand new brake peg too when I got it. So logical conclusion: the bike was crashed on the left side on some rocks, the brake peg shattered the clutch cover exactly where the cover's serial number is - on the other side. Most of the chunks I found were flushed with the oil, but the last bit I found was stuck in a compartment further away from the oil plug and the piece was too large to go through the drain. If I had flipped the bike while riding the piece could have fallen into the transmission and wrecked it. From now on I'll ride with a clutch cover protector! So far 30 hours invested to solve this puzzle (a lot of reading, youtubing, ordering the appropriate tools, etc..). I'm glad I took the time to do it myself. I'm learning a lot. And I'm not unhappy to be in cool basement while it's 100 degrees wherever I can ride near SF. Still, one problem remains: I had an abnormal amount of metal flakes in the oil. And the only coper bushings are - if I'm right - on the crank's pin. Yet there is no play anywhere on the rod (when twisting or pulling). I've measured the gap between the rod and the crank and it's in spec with 0.38mm (spec is 0.20 - 0.45mm). So I'm aiming towards the maximum tolerance and the bike is only at 50 hours and these things should be a concern passed 125 hours. Shall I just get the crank to be rebuilt while the case is open? Or I shouldn't worry and plan to check clearances again in 50+ hours? And Finally, If I have to take the crank out - how do you get the spacer out without destroying the seal behind it (see picture)? No way to grab without scoring it. Heat maybe?
  9. Earthmover: I'm second owner - but I got the bike "like new" at 13 hours from a newbie who found it too big - only blemish on the bike was a mangled but operational left radiator, damaged by dropping the bike on rocky terrain. The bike has no sign of having tempered with previously, gaskets are OEM, no trace made by tools handled by newbie mechanics like me. Last night I got the clutch basket and the alternator cover out (that wasn't easy). Everything looks like new. I'm as puzzled as your are, believe me! The bets are still open: I still think some part of the case around the transmission has flaked off... I hope to have an answer tonight because I'll hopefully have managed to split the case then. I'll post pictures.
  10. yes I did, and the cover is complete.
  11. Earthmover, I'm absolutely blown away by your generosity! 1.5 hours, that's a lot. Thank you. I actually pulled the engine off the bike (why does everything disconnects except the alternator? why?) and I started pulling the engine apart. So far I have pulled out the head cylinder, the cylinder as well as the clutch cover and the alternator cover appart. I also got the clutch discs out. And... everything is in perfect condition. The piston and the rod have strictly no perceptible play, they turn smoothly, the rod is intact, the piston is intact and in perfect condition, the rings look good (just a thin layer of carbon buildup on top. The cylinder looks perfect, the valves are spotless, the crank has no play and no trace of wear. I haven't measured anything yet but since there is no traces of wear it might not even be necessary. I've ordered a bunch of tools from ebay which should be here soon. And I'll be able to pull the alternator, remove the clutch basket and split the case. If something is broken it has to be around the transmission or the shifting mechanism which I can't inspect until I've split the case open. BTW: I'm looking at buying whatever I need from http://www.ktmpartspro.com/ . That's the only source of OEM parts I could find online. Is there another one.
  12. Chrisso. thanks for the feedback no, looks all the cases have the same level of wear - not much of it. Neither the shop nor forums could guess what part that could be so I'm setting up to work on my first engine overall. I'll start with the top end to check the piston and its bearing (top guess) because it doesn't require any special tools. and if isn't that I'll order the tools to for splitting the case. What I find really amazing is that the bike was working perfectly, no noises, ticking, cracking... nothing like that.
  13. Warranty period expired 4 months ago - basically when I bought the bike used - it 13 hours was no external signs of an issue. The technicians at the dealer said the copper flakes are a sign if a rod bearing going out, and I think the only copper bearing on the bike is located on the crank... right? Is there anyway to check this without opening the case? I have an endoscope but can't figure out where I could route it to see the crank. I might be up to remove the piston to check, that's not too difficult - easier than splitting the case.
  14. I checked the clutch basket by removing the cover and all the discs - it hasn't any trace of wear.
  15. My bike is a Husqvarna FE350s (US) 2016 - I'm posting in the KTM forum because it's the same engine as an EXC and more people have them. The bike has 45 hours and approximately 1000 miles and oil changes were done every 15 hours. On my latest oil change (8/18/2017) I found more coper color flakes in the oil and a chunk of non magnetic metal about 6mm side, 5mm wide, about 3mm thick with part of a serial number on it ( showing: ... 000/ ...). The previous oil change also had smaller chunks and coper flakes but less - I assumed it was some engine casting and normal wear. I was certainly wrong. The bike runs good, starts well. All the smog stuff have been removed, has a better fuel rail, improved intake and exhaust and the TPI is adjusted to run like the off-road version (richer). The clutch drags a lot when cold (can barely start in gear) and a little when warm (starts in gear without issue) - all of which is normal for such bikes. The gears work good. But compared to my previous bike - a WR250 - I find it hard sometimes to find neutral (it won't go to neutral from 1st, bur will go with a light touch from 2nd), The bike doesn't overheat. OK, so before I either spend a lot of hours disassembling a motorcycle engine for the first time or give my wallet to the dealer: would anyone have a clue of what this chunk could come from? What part in the engine has a casted serial number? And which bearing is coper based?