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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
My rear cylinder on the right side has a bunch of rust where spark plug goes in. Any tips on getting it out? I have attached a few pictures.

This problem isn't that uncommon I'd guess? Considering the angle of the opening it seems like a perfect spot for water to sit indefinitely after a rain.

I'm going to replace all the plugs with the suggested iridium plugs and want to get all of the rust out without getting any in the engine. I was thinking spray a ton of WD40, let sit, scrub with a tooth brush, then rinse out with a hose. I'm guessing this will work pretty well but I don't think a tooth brush will fit at the bottom where plug is and that looks to be where the most rust is.

Thanks!



EDIT - Just realized the "spark plug retainer" unscrews. Any tips for removing this piece and minimizing the crud that ends up in the engine? As well as reinstalling without messing up anything. Thanks!
 

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Sparky!!!
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8,697 Posts
there is a bolt on the bike... I think its the rear axle nut (some one correct me if I am wrong) that fits inside the retainer, then you just use a socket and ratchet to unscrew the spark plug retainer.

First though spray the spark plug with PB Blaster and let soak, then remove spark plug, then remove said retainer.. other wise spark plug is going to be a pain to remove.
 

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Mine was bad too. Luckily, the plugs where barely torqued. If you remove the retainer, does it have to go back in? What is its purpose, I never seen that before?
 

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Sparky!!!
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yes it has to go back in.. the retainer is to keep the steel spark plug threads from rusting into the aluminum head.. so in case of the threads getting messed up you can replace the retainer instead of the head.
 

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Model A Guy
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26 Posts
Drain hole stopped up?

The reason the plug is recessed on that side of cylinder is the cam chains are on that side, on the front cylinder it is the other side. If there were only 2 plugs they would probably be on the other side of each cylinder where recessing them would not be necessary. When you remove this tube there are two o-rings you should replace so you do not develope an oil leak. There is a drain passage to the rear of the rear cylinder and one to the front of the front cylinder, these need to be clear so water can drain out of the tube. Your rear one must be stopped up to allow water to sit and cause such corrosion. I would use a small skinny screwdriver to loosen up as much crud as possible then run a small wire through drain passage and vacume it out before I removed spark plug or the tube. When you have removed the tube you can clean it much easier. The rear axle nut does fit into the tube to unscrew it. You could also use compressed air to blow the crud out of tube and passage, be sure to wear eye protection! Putting it back together is just the reverse of removing it. Try to insure that nothing gets into the spark plug hole or the engine while doing this!! One place to get the proper o-rings is BikeBandit.com Part numbers are 92055 31mm & 92055B 27.7mm if you get them there. A dealership would want Part numbers 11028-1085 31mm & 11028-1097 27.7mm, or at least the dealer where I live did. Of course the dealership did not have them.
 

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1986 VN750
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3,255 Posts
I'll tell you where I got the proper o-rings, I don't want to advertise for anyone on our site.
It's more than acceptable to detail where you obtained replacement parts. At the very least, the correct part numbers would be helpful. This forum is all about sharing of information!
 

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Model A Guy
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Sharing information

How does that look now? Better?
 

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1986 VN750
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Lookin good :smiley_th

I try to make my posts with the thought that someone 2-3 years down the line may be looking up the issue via the search box, so I try to post as much information as possible.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for all the input guys! Ordered o-rings, once they come in I'll try to clean it up and let you know how it goes.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I broke the plug free, but I can't get the axle nut off of the bike. I've cranked and cranked. Any suggestions on how to get it off or a place where I could find another nutt that larger (checked a few stores including home depot and no luck). Thanks guys!
 

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I broke the plug free, but I can't get the axle nut off of the bike. I've cranked and cranked. Any suggestions on how to get it off or a place where I could find another nutt that larger (checked a few stores including home depot and no luck). Thanks guys!
It should come off easy. The castle nut is on the left side with a cotter pin thru the axel holding the nut.. The cotter pin has to be removed. Put a socket on the axel on the right side and a big crescent wrench on the nut on left side. Turn the left side nut counterclockwise to break it free. Then you can rotate the axel with the socket to loosen it.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I got the cotter pin free, but the nut won't budge. I've been spraying tons of PB Blaster on it. I had a big wrench on it, wasn't holding the other side but it wasn't rotating at all.
 

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Guess I'll be taking the exhaust off tomorrow... yay... Can't fit a socket in between.
Put a long pipe over the handle of the crescent wrench for leverage. I actually put big vice grips on the nut and put a long pipe over one handle.
 

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Model A Guy
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26 Posts
Don't have to remove exhaust.

Remove the top or bottom nuts from rear shocks and loosen the others so you can slip the end of the shock off its mount, that will drop the axle down where the exhaust isn't in the way. Gotta have it on the v-stand with something like a piece of wood under that to give it a little bit of extra heigth.
Sometimes the bike will try to go foreward if the axle nut is being difficult to remove. Secure the v-stand to the front wheel with (a rope will do) something so the stand will not fold to its' stowed position! The bike will fall over and you probably wont be able to stop it if you don't! You can remove the the exhaust, but you might break a manifold bolt (another problem) or ruin one of the lead? gaskets (something else to order...purchase!) Don't forget to re-torque the axle nut when you put it back on and a new cotter pin would be nice. Oh, you can move the rear wheel up by hand to reconnect the shocks (someone helping you wouldn't hurt) Rear axle nut torque 80 ft-lbs
In the search box of this forum you can type a description of any problem you'll ever encounter with your bike and get instant solutions!
This can save you time and you'll be forewarned of any problems you might encounter! Look up spline lube while/if you do it this way,
not that much more to do to insure they are coated with the proper grease.
 

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Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
Found an axle nut that was close enough at the auto parts store. Was better than ripping my back out trying to get the other nut off. Thanks for all the help guys, shes up and running like a beast now!

As a tip to anyone else who has this problem, you can unscrew the coolant tank and have good access to a tiny hole where the water is supposed to drain. Shove a small screw driver up there to break all the gunk up and a larger screw driver through the spark plug retainer to scrape as much out as you can.
 

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Good news. When you have the chance you should deal with the axel nut. It must be on way too tight. If you need to change a tire, work on the brakes ,or do a spline lube, you won't want to be fighting with the axel nut again. jmo
 

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Linkmeister Supreme
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7,960 Posts
Found an axle nut that was close enough at the auto parts store. Was better than ripping my back out trying to get the other nut off. Thanks for all the help guys, shes up and running like a beast now!

As a tip to anyone else who has this problem, you can unscrew the coolant tank and have good access to a tiny hole where the water is supposed to drain. Shove a small screw driver up there to break all the gunk up and a larger screw driver through the spark plug retainer to scrape as much out as you can.
A 1-1/16 nut is too small for a good snug fit (26.98mm), but a 1-1/8" nut is just a bit too big . It`s about 28.575 mm.

With the nut clamped in a bench vice, it took about 5 minutes to take half a mm off of each side so it would fit the spark plug tube. (Mine is just a bit bigger than 27 mm.)

Just another option for making your own 27mm "Allen wrench", for anybody else who may have some big old SAE nuts in their junk drawer. :)
 
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