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Sparky!!!
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8,696 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
God I hate the cold. Tonight i wanted to drain my gas tank because it is getting cold and I can't ride to work any more. Upon inserting my key and trying to unlock my gas cap, the key broke off in the cap...then took out my spare key and it didn't budge the lock either...I had to pry the lock apart and use a screw driver to force the lock. Now I have to rekey my bike...although I am thinking of waiting until I come back on R&R to fix it.
 

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Love My Baby
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1,165 Posts
OH NO, say it isn't so...
That really sucks. It must be freezing cold up there, Slim. You've got to come down to sunny Florida for a warm escape.

I hope you didn't scratch the u-know-what out of your tank.
 

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Registered
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60 Posts
Check to see if the key has any numbers on it. Mind did, and the locksmith was able to make a new key from the numbers. He might be able to make a key from the 2 halfs if you are lucky.
 

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Sparky!!!
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8,696 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
I found my spare key...so having a key isn't an issue...I found the key too late though and destroyed the lock on the gas cap.

and no I did not scratch the tank...I might have scratched the fuel cap, but not the tank
 

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Linkmeister Supreme
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7,960 Posts
God I hate the cold. Tonight i wanted to drain my gas tank because it is getting cold and I can't ride to work any more. Upon inserting my key and trying to unlock my gas cap, the key broke off in the cap...then took out my spare key and it didn't budge the lock either...I had to pry the lock apart and use a screw driver to force the lock. Now I have to rekey my bike...although I am thinking of waiting until I come back on R&R to fix it.
Sorry to hear about your lock trouble slim. Was the lock frozen or a mechanical problem? For anyone not used to dealing with freezing weather and auto or motorcycle locks, there are a few things you can do to avoid breaking keys off.

1. Preventative medicine-squirt in a little powered graphite lubricant now, before you need it and work the key in and out several times as well as back and forth, to smooth the lock up.

2. Little bottle of alcohol to squirt in frozen lock to free it up so you can turn it.

3. If your key head is all metal with no rubber or plastic permenantly attached, you can try heating it with a lighter ( a windproof one works best )and putting it in repeatedly until it thaws the ice in the lock enough to turn the key. If you`re at home a hair blow dryer might work too. Good luck.
 

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Linkmeister Supreme
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7,960 Posts
God I hate the cold. Tonight i wanted to drain my gas tank because it is getting cold and I can't ride to work any more. Upon inserting my key and trying to unlock my gas cap, the key broke off in the cap...then took out my spare key and it didn't budge the lock either...I had to pry the lock apart and use a screw driver to force the lock. Now I have to rekey my bike...although I am thinking of waiting until I come back on R&R to fix it.
That`s a PITA slim. Is this the first winter with freezing weather for you? Check the service station for a small bottle of methyl alcohol to squirt in a frozen lock, to displace the ice. It works ok usually, if the temp is only a few degrees below freezing. If it is really cold, you need to heat the key with a lighter (wind proof is best) or a small torch or heat gun. Flames are ok for a door lock, but be careful around the gas tank.

When you get it open, squirt in some powdered graphite lubricant. It might help prevent it from happening again. Good luck.

P.S.- I didn`t mean to post this twice. I thought I lost the first post and rewrote this one.
 

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Sparky!!!
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8,696 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
not my first winter...not even close...no it wasn't frozen..That was my first thought... but after breaking the lock I decided to tear apart the gas cap to see how hard it will be for me to rekey it...I found the locking mechanism rusted very badly. So a new gas cap is in order
 

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The Professor
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3,147 Posts
not my first winter...not even close...no it wasn't frozen..That was my first thought... but after breaking the lock I decided to tear apart the gas cap to see how hard it will be for me to rekey it...I found the locking mechanism rusted very badly. So a new gas cap is in order
Just wanted to let you know if you buy a new one from Ma Kaw the lock cylinder is not included. :beerchug:
 

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Registered
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Wow. That's a bummer. I have to say that my key is weak from getting bent in the lock, and then straightened, too many times. I pulled the cap, disassembled the whole thing and lubed with graphite, but it's still just a stubborn piece on both my Vulcans. Any ideas? I've thought of changing the whole tank out and turning it into a gravity feed system, but...
 

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The Professor
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3,147 Posts
Wow. That's a bummer. I have to say that my key is weak from getting bent in the lock, and then straightened, too many times. I pulled the cap, disassembled the whole thing and lubed with graphite, but it's still just a stubborn piece on both my Vulcans. Any ideas? I've thought of changing the whole tank out and turning it into a gravity feed system, but...
I use a few drops of Marvel air tool oil in ALL lock cylinders including ignition. It has Rust, Corrosion, and Moisture inhibiters. Works Great! :smiley_th
 

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Vintage bike addict
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859 Posts
Yep the Marvel oil is great stuff. I've also used the oils with teflon and they work very well too.
 

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Registered
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I have some lock lubricant with graphite that I decided I probably shouldn't put in my bike's key slots. Didn't want to risk it getting into the gas somehow, and thought that I should goop highly conductive graphite near my ignition either. Am I being crazy-paranoid?
 

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The Professor
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3,147 Posts
I have some lock lubricant with graphite that I decided I probably shouldn't put in my bike's key slots. Didn't want to risk it getting into the gas somehow, and thought that I should goop highly conductive graphite near my ignition either. Am I being crazy-paranoid?
Graphite is OK as long as there is no moisture, But the MARVEL oil is much better. :hitanykey
 

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Linkmeister Supreme
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7,960 Posts
I have some lock lubricant with graphite that I decided I probably shouldn't put in my bike's key slots. Didn't want to risk it getting into the gas somehow, and thought that I should goop highly conductive graphite near my ignition either. Am I being crazy-paranoid?[/QUOTE]

IMHO, in a word, yes. You are only putting a fraction of a gram of graphite into the lock cylinder, and I don`t think that even if the whole bottle somehow got spilled into the fuel tank, that it would cause any problems going through the system. Graphite is after all, just pure powdered carbon, and it would be so diluted in the gas as to be practically undetectable.

I`m not sure what problem you foresee with graphite in the ignition lock cylinder either. The lock and the electrical contacts are in separate sealed sections of the ignition lock/switch assembly.

lancer has suggested Marvel air tool oil for protection from corrosion, rust and moisture. I have no experience with it, but it may very well be a better solution to this problem, than the graphite I mentioned initially.

The thing to remember is not to goop any lubricant into the lock cylinder, but rather to apply a few drops and work it into the mechanism by rotating it back and forth. Just my 2 cents worth.
 

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Geek
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872 Posts
Do you store your bike inside or out ?
 

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Sparky!!!
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8,696 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
I store the bike in both inside and out...lately its been out, becasue I ride every day. But when outside the cover goes on.
 

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Linkmeister Supreme
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7,960 Posts
Wow. That's a bummer. I have to say that my key is weak from getting bent in the lock, and then straightened, too many times. I pulled the cap, disassembled the whole thing and lubed with graphite, but it's still just a stubborn piece on both my Vulcans. Any ideas? I've thought of changing the whole tank out and turning it into a gravity feed system, but...
Hey tcm get a new key made before you break that one off in the ignition or a lock. You don`t want to add the words to your vocabulary that, that would cause.:doh:
 

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Registered
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Not to steal your post Slim, but I've pulled both gas caps apart more than once, and tried straight powder graphite and oil/graphite, and the gas cap is still nearly as stubborn as a doe around five other bucks. Just a Vulcan quark. I haven't tried lite oil yet as I heard through the grape vine that it likes to collect dust/abrasives (but I guess that's pretty :doh: when I'm cleaning them every couple seasons).

Hey Antiq, does the teflon based stuff or pneumatic oil last any longer than the graphite based stuff?

Good point Hoss. The thing is that I get this funny rash on my larynx that gives me a potty mouth whenever I have only one key to any lock I own. :D
 

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Sparky!!!
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8,696 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
I don't mind you stealing the thread...my cap is messed up beyond belief...I had to break the cap to get it off today...the locking mech didn't want to release with any amount of force. so now I need a new Cap
 

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Vintage bike addict
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859 Posts
I'm not real sure if it lasts longer. Because I'm in the habit of squirting the car and bike locks every fall. Once a year hasn't been a problem for over ten years now. BTW in case anyone is interested and freezing weather is upon many. Another favorite trick of mine is to spray my car and truck door gaskets with silicone. That way the doors never freeze shut and I don't break any handles trying to get in. On the rare occasion I forget to lube a lock. Usually the shed lock. I spray it with silicone thats been stored in the house. It usually opens right up.
 
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