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Discussion Starter #1
I've heard folks recommend putting engine oil or fogging in the spark plug holes. I copied the following from one site. Two questions.....

1) Is the top gear, fifth gear?
2) How many of ya do this?

Turn the bike off and remove the spark plugs. Then, using a turkey baster, suck up 25cc's (actually found another site that said 5cc's) of engine oil and squirt the oil into each plug hole. Turn the engine over by hand (put it in top gear and turn the rear wheel) with the plugs still out to coat the cylinder walls, piston rings and valve seats. Then replace the plugs and drain the existing crankcase oil.
 

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I have stored bikes long term before, and have pretty much perfected a system that works. This is if you do not plan on starting the bike until you take it out of storage. First, it needs to be stored indoors. Outdoor storage will destroy a bike.

I warm up the engine, and change the oil and filter. I then drain and remove the tank, make sure you get all the gas out, then pour in about a qt. of WD-40 (I buy it by the gallon), shake the tank good to completely coat the inside, then drain out the excess. You can still use it as WD-40. While the tank is off, drain the carbs, fill with WD-40 through the fuel line, then drain that out. Tighten the drain screws, put the tank back on, and hook up the fuel line. Remove all the spark plugs, and using a transmission funnel, spray some fogging oil into the cylinders. With the bike in gear and on the centerstand (for the VN750) turn the rear wheel, which will turn the engine over pretty easy if the plugs are out. Put the plugs back in finger tight (for the VN750, you actually only need to remove 2, I'd remove the 2 non recessed ones) Air up the tires to the max pressure on the sidewall. Remove the battery, and connect it to a battery tender. Do not leave it in the bike, even MF AGM types can leak acid. Remember, the battery will still be wearing out, you can't make a battery last forever, even if it is kept fully charged. Throw a sheet over the bike.


About once a month, remove the plugs, spray in some more oil, and turn the back wheel just a bit. The idea is to keep the cylinder walls lubricated, and keep the piston rings from sticking in the bore. By using the back wheel to turn the engine over, you are also turning the final drive, clutch, and transmission. Parts that are designed to be moved need to be moved. Keep the tires inflated, move the front tire to a new position to prevent flat spotting the tire. Put the plugs back, step on the rear brake to work the mechanism, squeeze the clutch lever and front brake lever and twist the throttle.

The 2 biggest dangers to bikes that are stored for long periods of time are the pistons sticking in the bore, and oil seals drying out and leaking. Moving parts with oil seals, like the final drive, helps protect them. Working the shifter up and down once a month wouldn't be a bad idea either.


This may sound like a lot, but it really isn't. It takes less than an hour the first time, and about 10 minutes a month. How much is your bike worth? Even my crappiest one is worth more than that.
 

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Old Twistie Sticks Rider
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Aahhmmm, I don't winterize because I can start mine up every now and again... Another reason is, years ago I was told I should winterize my outboard fishing boat although I did use it if the weather got warm, well one winter I did, that was the first time I ever had problems with that 35 hp Evenrude motor, liked to have never got it started or running right, it gave me running problems near all summer... So now I just keep a full tank of gas (non-ethanol) in my cycle (don't have boats anymore) and start it every once and again on a warmer day... But everyone to their own...
Have a good one...Old Dog...
 

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There's likely more opinions on how to winterize a bike then there are in an oil thread.


Jerrys suggestions pretty much cover the needed issues, although I have read about instead of draining the gas tank, to fill it up, and pour in 2 cups of two stroke oil. Shake the bike back and forth to mix it up. Start the bike (helps if the bike was warm to begin with) let it run a few minutes until the pipes are blowing smoke pretty good.

Read the same proceedure above but you turn the gas off and just let the bike run till it dies from lack of fuel.

Another variation is to turn the fuel off and fill the carbs with SeaFoam.

Another version you leave the spark plug wires off the plugs and hit the starter button once every 3 weeks to turn the motor over.

Other tips include blocking/covering the air box inlets and exhaust pipes to keep little critters out. (mice seem to love airfilter boxes) placing open cans of mothballs under the bike (that's covered with a sheet) is supposed to work too.

I have never done any of these things as the only thing I do is cover the bike and check the battery charge each month....as I find days to ride even in the winter. Longest stretch without riding was 30 days.

Many folks just go out to the garage and start the bike and let it run a few minutes every few weeks. You still need to monitor/charge the battery and dumping a can of SeaFoam in the tank is a good idea too.
 

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Old Twistie Sticks Rider
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There's likely more opinions on how to winterize a bike then there are in an oil thread.
I have never done any of these things as the only thing I do is cover the bike and check the battery charge each month....as I find days to ride even in the winter. Longest stretch without riding was 30 days.
That would just about cover what I do also...
Have a good one...Old Dog...
 

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Discussion Starter #6
The last two years I just changed the oil and added stabil to the gas tank. If we were to have some great weather sometime, yeah I'd like to be able to go out for a ride. Yes, I know a number of folks like seafoam. I add seafoam during the riding season and I've got a bottle of stabil so I am using it! Taking the gas tank off and draining the carbs is a bit ambitious for me. I had to buy fogging oil for the jet ski and the in laws boat so I was thinking about squirting some into the plugs so I could think what good care I was taking of my baby! Just wasn't completely sure what the top gear referenced in my above post alluded to. Fifth gear seeems like a reasonable guess.
 

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If only it had 6th gear..
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Top gear is the highest gear a vehicle has in its tranny so you are correct, it is 5th gear on our bikes. BTW, I use fogging oil in my engine and it gives me a peace of mind. I don't go as far as Jerry but agree with all his suggestions and since he's got 70k on his Vulcan, seems he's doing things right. If you are set in using stabil make sure it's made for ethanol crap gas or your baby will pay you back by not running very well next season. This is why people recommend Seafoam. It works.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Appreciate it!!!
 

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My procedure is if you are actually going to store the bike and not ride it. If you can ride it at least once a month, then just put stabilizer in the gas, and give it it's monthly exercise. I might still drain the carbs (using the drain screws to get it all out) because a float bowl full of gas is likely to evaporate over the course of a month, leaving behind all that gooey gunk. It is repeated evaporation of gas from carbs that eventually plug them up. There are some places where you are just not going to ride a motorcycle in the winter.
 

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Had a mechanic tell me not to use Stabil. He said it is crap and does more damage than good. Stick with the Seafoam
 

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Had a mechanic tell me not to use Stabil. He said it is crap and does more damage than good. Stick with the Seafoam
^ +1.

I wouldnt use it either. I know some folks say they use it all the time and never had a problem ... But it's those few that have that keeps me away from it.
 

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Git-R-Done!
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Personally, I use Lucas Fuel Treatment. I like it even better than Seafoam. But, like OldDog says - to each his own : )

AZ Kev
 

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I am convinced that anything sold by Lucas is going to be good stuff. In the racing world, their reputation is second to none. But I still use Seafoam. Got hooked on it along time ago.
 

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Old Truck Junkie
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If you don't do much winterizing on your bike at least do your self a favor and do 3 things. 1. Use some kind of fuel treatment in the tank. 2. Drain or run the fuel out of your carb. This for those that won't use thier bikes for an extended lenght of time.. And 3. Check your antifreeze freeze point. Just MHO.
 

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Old Twistie Sticks Rider
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If you don't do much winterizing on your bike at least do your self a favor and do 3 things. 1. Use some kind of fuel treatment in the tank. 2. Drain or run the fuel out of your carb. This for those that won't use thier bikes for an extended lenght of time.. And 3. Check your antifreeze freeze point. Just MHO.
I make sure of one thing, and one thing only, and that is to keep the tank near full of NON-ethanol gas, of course if it was water cooled I would make sure the anti-freeze was up to par... I keep a 2 gal can in the shed to top off my tank even in the summer mos., never know when the good ride bug will bite and you want to be in the twisties right now...lol...
Have a good one...Old Dog...
 
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