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Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Chandler, Arizona
I am in the U.S. I work on bikes, but the only motorcycle engines I have ever actually rebuilt have been 2 stroke dirt bike engines. I have built and rebuilt a lot of car engines, including high dollar drag race engines. Mostly small block Chevys. I have also built a few air cooled VW engines. The Vulcan engine is a lot more complex than either one of those. I had to give up my job as a mechanic after 37 years (with the same employer) due to disabilities. I still work on cars and bikes, it just takes longer and is a lot more painful. I no longer work on any electronic or computer parts. Mechanical only. I have no interest in electronics (on vehicles, I am an amateur radio operator, but even there I prefer tube radios) and no longer have tools and diagnostic equipment to do that kind of thing anyway. Four of my five cars and all 6 of my bikes are carbureted. One of my cars is a street legal drag racer, and makes almost 600hp. I built the engine myself except for the machine work. I see working on the Vulcan as being more like working on a clock rather than a car or simpler motorcycle. It has twice as many parts as your average v-twin motorcycle. I blew an engine in my '02 Vulcan 750 (broken cam chain) and never even considered trying to repair it. I recently bought a nice low mileage 1997 model, and will be getting it road ready this summer (here in Phoenix, AZ, where it reaches 118+ degrees F) winter is riding season.
The Vulcan 750 engine, in typical Japanese fashion, was never intended to be rebuilt. Unlike car engines, when worn cranks and cams can be reground, cylinders rebored, valve seats replaced, and undersized bearings and oversized pistons and rings installed, large expensive parts have to be replaced. If a Vulcan crank or con rod bearing fails, you have the replace the whole pressed together assembly. You have no way to even check con rod bearing clearances. Cams run directly in the head, with no bearings. So excessive wear means replacing the cams and heads, rather than just the bearings. It can get real expensive real quick. As far as I know, the last truly rebuildable motorcycle engine was the Harley EVO.
I am a motorcyclist, NOT a biker.
1997 Vulcan 750, purchased about a week ago
2006 Sportster 1200 Low
2013 Royal Enfield Bullet 500, converted to carb
2001 Yamaha XT225, heavily modified
2004 Honda Rebel 250
1979 Vespa P200E
2002 Vulcan 750 parts bike
1994 Yamaha XT225 parts bike