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Messages - BartusCompater

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Your Honda Nighthawk / Re: My 1985 cb 650 sc Nighthawk
« on: October 15, 2016, 06:08:28 PM »
Blech! I hope it's recovered.

Stablemates / Re: Advice on my Harley Shovelhead?
« on: May 25, 2016, 11:12:29 AM »
Yes, it's a single carb that feeds both cylinders, which is why I'm wondering how a stuck float would only affect one plug. But I don't know if it's possible that the fuel just leaks down into the front cylinder.

The spark plugs were replaced last summer, if that helps narrow things down a bit. They were pretty fresh plugs.

Folks on the Harley forum are suggesting that I take a look at the points, as well as the fuel squirter in the carb (wondering if it might be twisted toward the front cylinder and squirting more into that one --- who designed these things??)

Stablemates / Re: Advice on my Harley Shovelhead?
« on: May 23, 2016, 03:09:22 PM »
If it is black black fouled, then could be the float or other issue as well causing it to flood and way overrich.  Good thing those ol engines are able to be wrenched on!

It is totally black, but no deposits. Like someone just spray-painted it black. I'm curious if this explains why only one plug is affected?

Stablemates / Re: Advice on my Harley Shovelhead?
« on: May 20, 2016, 09:37:17 PM »
One of the plugs was all blackened up. I just rode it ~40 miles and it's better than ever with the new plugs.

Perhaps it was luck, but funny how in this case Honda folks knew better than the Harley folks when it came to diagnosing a Harley.  claugh1

Stablemates / Re: Advice on my Harley Shovelhead?
« on: May 18, 2016, 11:56:16 PM »
I think you both may have hit the nail on the head.

The folks at the Harley forum advised stuck float bowl, but my Dad called me to report that he replaced the spark plugs and all seems to be well. We'll see when I get a chance to ride back up there and take a look at it!

Stablemates / Advice on my Harley Shovelhead?
« on: May 15, 2016, 07:44:28 PM »
Hey folks,

I've also made a post on the Harley forums, but there are some very knowledgeable and reliable folks here on the nighthawk forum that I'd love to get 2 cents from on an issue I'm having with my other bike, a 1979 Harley Shovelhead.  :shg:

My Dad and I fixed it up last summer, and it was in tip top shape. He says that he has been starting it up every once and a while since then to keep liquids circulating. In any case, I went to take it for a ride today and it was struggling to run without the choke and a healthy bit of throttle. After letting it run for a good long while, it finally got to the point where it could idle on its own without choke, but it sounded really weak AND I noticed something a little worrisome--

One of the pipes was spitting out light colored smoke and thin liquid (I first thought oil, but now believe to be fuel) was coming out. Only on the one pipe.

The bike would bog down and die under any kind of load until we'd had it idling for a good 15 minutes. Then when I took it out to the street and fully accelerated, it began to backfire like a machine gun--with bursts of power on each backfire.

I'm suspecting that fuel in one of the cylinders isn't being properly ignited, but wondering what you all think. I'm not an experienced Harley guy. My Dad tells me that he tipped it over in the garage while trying to move it earlier in he year... and I'm wondering if that may have led to an exhaust leak & improper mixture. What do y'all think?

Thanks for your help.

Stablemates / The stablehawg
« on: December 09, 2015, 07:50:33 PM »
I have a confession to make. It is something that should only be read in secret, and something that–when I speak of it–I only speak of in hushed tones. Despite the fact that I love my Honda, I am now also the owner of a 1979 Harley Davidson Shovelhead FXS Lowrider. My father and I spent the good part of a year slowly chipping away at getting his old bike running. After spending about ten years in pieces, it is alive again… and it is good.

The place where I think everyone needs to start when trying to understand what in the hell makes Harley people tick, is with the engine. This thing is around 1350cc’s of pure, inefficient, beast mode. It nearly takes the displacement of the four cylinder CB750 and packs that into each of its two massive cylinders. This means that the motor feels and sounds like a big, thumping, gas-fed heart. The Nighthawk engine spools up, whirring high and low with the throttle, while the Lowrider hammers it’s way through RPMS at half the speed. The torque that’s created allows me to completely ignore what gear I’m in–it will tug itself uphill at slow speeds in high gear… while the Nighthawk relies on finesse, proper gearing, and a careful working of the clutch to get the most of the engine’s small, fast, mode of releasing energy.

When you try to kick start the Harley (and you should), there is a part of your brain that wonders if the compression might kick back and break your goddamn leg (it won’t). Then comes the moment of truth. That singular point in time when your own vigor brings something altogether powerful and new back to life.
At this point I’ve started the Harley quite a few times, and I still feel like a kid in a candy shop when I get to kick it over. It’s hard to understand when your only experience with Harleys is of them interrupting your peace and solitude as they scream down the road… but there truly is something about the sound of a Harley’s exhaust that has real beauty and emotional power. I’m convinced that there is some sort of physiological reaction that takes place when you’re on that seat, you turn that throttle, and you hear that exhaust, which is just absolutely infectious.

You may have heard that the reason no other motorcycles sound like Harleys is that Harleys are intentionally designed to run poorly. That the only way to create the “Harley” sound is to design an engine that is working against itself. You may have heard this…
…and it is completely, and utterly true. The thing about it though, is that this is a perfect illustration of what makes Harley Davidsons so appealing. From our high Honda throne it is incredibly difficult to understand a motorcycle that was not built to be a performance machine. It is bigger, heavier, slower, more expensive, and just plain stupider than any Japanese motorcycle. And that’s what makes Harleys so awesome. They aren’t about fulfilling Robert Pirsig’s idea of the “quality” (Quality ?) machine. They are about making an aesthetic statement. Everything from the heavy metal components, to the loud exhaust, to the poor engineering of the engine comes down to expressing character.

This isn’t to say that Hondas can’t have character or soul. Of course they can. They are motorcycles. On the other hand, I don’t think this is what they’re all about. My Nighthawk is a precision machine, engineered to be the best, most efficient two-wheeled vehicle possible for its price-point. The experience it provides is smooth and reliable. The Harley rattles your teeth out. It falls apart as you ride it (I almost lost my front brake and one of my exhaust pipes while riding last week). All the while, you draw stares (especially terrified and awe-inspired 4 year olds) and you feel like you are something more mysterious and powerful than you ever thought possible.

General Motorcycle Discussion / Re: New rider questioning my desire to ride
« on: December 06, 2015, 08:10:01 PM »
I wrote a couple of journal entries about this when I first started riding...

"Riding a motorcyle has turned out to be a stressful and frightening thing. I wasn’t nearly  as anxious hopping out of a plane at 18 years old as I have been riding on this bike (at nearly 23).
Fright is easy enough to push past. But what I’m finding is that getting on a bike not only involves the clear choice to enter into a dangerous situation, it also demands that you turn your frightened mind off (this is much more difficult). While many of the basic survival instincts humans have been using to scrape through dangerous situations for thousands of years– such as fixating on threats, tensing up, and making sudden abrupt actions– were great ways for caveman Grogg to escape lion attacks, on a motorcycle these kinds of things can send you straight into the pavement. It should go without saying though that turning off your survival instincts is immensely hard. Hey brain, I know I’m you and everything, but you really need me to listen to you and not do what I am naturally inclined to make me do.

It’s also powerful and freeing though to think that we can overcome even the most basic of instincts. Of course there are some mental limitations that we can never break through, but it is amazing to think that many of the limitations we live by are like non-load-bearing walls–with enough work we can tear them down and the structure will still stand. But keeping my eyes up– away from the bike, away from things I don’t want to hit, (away from things I am actually worried about) and avoiding instant reactions is an immensely difficult mental exercise (one that, for me, is much more taxing than sitting down at a desk and filling out answers to a test). It will take a while for me to knock that wall down. I just have to keep reminding myself to trust in physics, to trust that leaning in towards moving pavement is alright, and to trust that if I look in one direction and calmly, smoothly input the controls needed to get there, then I will. Doing this means refusing to give into normal knee-jerk fear reactions…
…that’s just hard when you’ve got a 75 horsepower engine growling underneath you."

Stablemates / Re: New stable mate coming soon..... AND IT'S READY!
« on: October 10, 2014, 06:04:03 PM »
Or with TWO CBX ENGINES!!!!!

Stablemates / Re: New stable mate coming soon..... AND IT'S READY!
« on: October 10, 2014, 06:02:28 PM »
It might sound good now... but think about how it would sound WITH A TURBO!!!


You were doing something wrong as you had more HP than he probably had; you should have been able to pass him easily.  He has more torque by a wide margin.  You bike is about 450 lbs and his 800 lbs. 

Next time get the RPM up and pass him at 7-8K on the tach with it still climbing.  He should not be able to accelerate anything close to you.


I was just about to post something like this before I read the "twist" at the end of the story.

Your Honda Nighthawk / Re: What color is your helmet....
« on: October 04, 2014, 09:30:17 PM »
Black. Because when I ride I am an ambassador for darkness and badassery.

Your Honda Nighthawk / Re: My 2002 Nighthawk 750
« on: June 08, 2014, 10:18:30 PM »
Man, I love your setup! It looks like it is ready for some straight-up adventure.

I have lots of questions!

1. What kind of saddlebags are those?

2. How was it getting the backrest/rack to fit over the Corbin? Can you still remove the seat?

3. What was it like installing those handguards?

Cheers!  cheers3

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