Thursday, September 17, 2009

How to spend a day less than efficiently.

Recently Rosanna's engine has been making odd noises and running poorly.
So a couple of days ago, nice guy Phil helped me swap out motors on Rosanna's bike so that I could investigate the noises and fix this engine.

I packed up the engine, threw it on my back, and rode over to 'ol ADD Motorworks and Pinball Amusements. As it turns out, one of the clutch shims was just a little too thick. The circlip that holds the clutch bell tight popped loose and was causing the clutch to rub on the inside of the clutch bell. Here is a picture of the culprit:

Notice the scrape marks that go around the inside of the clutch bell.

Travis told me that he had a selection of clutch shims at his house on Capitol Hill but for some reason I couldn't bring myself to repacking the motor and carrying it another 5 miles on my rigid bike through the rough streets of Seattle. So instead I thought, "Why not just sand down this shim to fit. It's pretty close already, right? right? right? right?" I didn't actually repeat "right" but my memory of that statement echoes ominously.

I filed and sanded that thing for 3 hours. Every time I'd check it, the shim would be a little bit closer but not quite thin enough. Eventually, I decided it was good enough (by which I mean I had had enough) and slapped the clutch assembly back together.

In an attempt to maximize the usable space in our shop, I built shelves so that Rosanna and I can organize all of the things that were on the floor.

The shop last spring:

The shop today:

I realize that these two photos don't show exactly the same area of the shed but just absorb these images on the level that one is oppressive and dark and the other is light and soothing. At least that's how I feel when I look at them.

Anywho, the point of all this is that while organizing my newly built shelves I found a clutch shim that I must have squirreled away at some point in history. I popped the shim in and voila! It worked much better than the painstakingy sanded one.

The moral of this story?

Don't be lazy/stupid. Even if modifying the part you have seems like less work than finding the correct component, it'll get you in the end.

Now enjoy this amazing scene from The Shining:


  1. "if modifying the part you have seems like less work than finding the correct component, it'll get you in the end."

    truer words ne'er spoke.

  2. this post was a long time coming, thanks sir

  3. It sounds like Ian was about to "get you in the end" if you didn't update your blog!