The End and Lessons Learnt!

Moved the bike to Haines Motorcycles to be finally prepped for selling. There’s a few jobs left to finish that I’ll do at Anthony’s, whilst there we agreed that the bike could do with something to support the rear mudguard as I’d removed the hideous stock CCM carrier. After a quick check in the parts room Anthony came up with a 404 mudguard support which as has the added benefit of a grab handle.

Drilled a couple of holes in the rear mudguard and bolted it on.

Am I sad to see it go? Not sure I thought it was a quick gearbox fix but as you’ll see from all the posts everything required doing and two years have passed.

A big thank to Anthony at Haines Motorcycles for all his help.



Lessons Learnt

You can find most parts with a bit of effort or just look through my posts. The main bits that let the bike down are the parts actually made by CCM as the quality is from my experience of this bike was questionable, there seemed to be a that will do attitude, but its nothing that a bit of work won’t overcome.

Sandblasting cabinet is a major asset if you’re doing a full rebuild, I used glass bead which gives a great key for painting or a satin finish for bare aluminium.

Any bits you can swap for KTM parts is a win such as lighting switch, the front brake hose guide and footpeg pins.

Suspension is all White Power so highly adjustable with parts easily available.

Plastics are easy to obtain and cheap plus Haines have stacks of different colour fuel tanks if you fancy a change.

Brakes are Brembo just don’t buy bike caliper pistons, as I found the same piston but for a car is vastly cheaper.

Wiring can be a nightmare if the previous owner butchered it and be aware of the hidden resistor which can cause starting issues. I found every connector except the starter solenoid, which you can reuse if its undamaged.

If I had the space I probably would have kept it and done a 720 big bore, matched ported head and kent cam for some extra power. But the next project awaits and its a beast – KTM 990 Adventure S.

Rear Suspension Setup

Realised I hadn’t setup the rear shock, so set about setting the static sag. I put the bike on a stand and measured from the rear indicator to the corner of the end of the swingarm, this gave me a dimension of 650mm. Lowering the bike onto the ground, bounc on the rear a few times to get the suspoension to settle, reduced that number to 560mm.

Taking the second number from the first 650 – 560 gives 90mm of static sag, way too much. KTM dirt bikes use 35-40mm so I was aiming for that area.

Removing the shock is easy with it on a mx stand, place something under the rear wheel to support then undo and remove the bottom shock bolt then, carefully, remove whatever you’ve used to hold the wheel up. This provides enough space to get the shock out. Undo the top mount, see previous post about cut-down spanner, and you can pull the shock out through the gap.

Measuring the shock spring length gave 198mm. I marked some reference points on the shock with a sharpie then wound on preload until it measured 190mm. Refitting the shock, don’t bother with the nuts as you’ll removing it a few times, and lowering the bike gave me a new measurement of 600mm or 50mm sag. My target was 35mm.

Basically winding on 8mm of preload reduced the sag by 40mm, so each turn adds about 2mm of preload which equates to 5mm increase in ride height. Another 2 and a bit turns of preload and I’m in the ball park for static sag.

I then sat on the bike and got a measurement of 500mm, indicating rider sag of about 110mm which is fine.

I’ve set rebound and compression to the middle and will adjust following test rides.



Slow Progress

Moving house soon so updates have slowed as I’m clearing stuff to make the move easier. Gas Gas has been sold to make space.

Swapped out some bolts to flanged button head allen bolts, these can be tricky as the head is shallow but as long as the threads are clean and you use some anti-seize then there usually aren’t any issues, but they look so much better.

Also sorted the plastic bung that covers one of the breather outlets on the airbox, I used XF650 parts.



Engine Paint – Take 2

Re-blasted the front pipe, then coated it with flameproof primer and top coat curing each coat with a hot air gun.

Still not convienced about the VHT paint. When the bike was running it started to produce tiny bubbles and smoked like crazy, but did stay on the pipe. I checked the temp of the pipe with a thermometer and when running it only hit 320c way below the 1000c the paint can cope with.

Still have to repaint the mid pipe, as that discoloured and will look for an alternative paint in the future.



Tidying Earth Cables

After doing some rerouting of cables found that battery earth cable was way too long. So cut and recrimped it to sort it out.



Also forgot to tighten the top shock bolt and once the subframe is attached you can’t get a socket or spanner on it. So purchased some ‘s’ spanners and cut the end down to fit, had to shorten an allen key as well using my dremel cut off wheel.



Engine Paint

So the VHT engine paint I used requires some, fairly, specific heat cycles to cure it. I started the bike to do this and within seconds the header paint bubbled and in plaves started to turn a gold colour. I stopped the engine and once cooled the header paint cracked and lifted off of the pipe, sigh.

The exhaust is painted in flameproof flat aluminium rated to over 1000c and the engine is painted in engine enamel rated to 288c and fuel/oil resistant.

Also when starting one carb slightly leaked and as I wiped the fuel off the starter motor, the engine enamel clear coat came with it, WTF. You can see highlighted in the photos below where the clear coat has smeared as the fuel dissolved it.

I’ve contacted VHT to try and understand what’s happened, as the entire engine is painted with their paints which are supposed to be heat and fuel proof.

I’m hoping you need to complete the heat cycles to cure the engine enamel and before that happens it can be affected by fuel, so you have to be really careful and I was unlucky with carbs leaking on to the starter motor, which is easily removed and repainted.



Throttle Postion Sensor (TPS) Adjustment

Started the bike to cure the engine enamel, more on that later, and noticed the throttle response was poor so decided to check the TPS was correctly adjusted as I just ball parked it on reassemble.

The process its very straight forward, remove the fuel tank, remove the TPS connector and take a resistance reading across the outer pins of the TPS. Once you have this reading multiply it by 0.76 and this gives you the value you should get when checking the top and middle pins at full throttle. In my case it was 5.0 k Ohms, so multiplied by 0.76 gives 3.8, the actual reading was 3.98.

I used a cable tie to hold the throttle wide open and found my value was off, so loosened the two bolts holding the TPS and adjusted it to get the correct reading of 3.8 K Ohms.

Throttle response was much better once adjusted.



More Tweaks

So more tweaks towards the finish line. The front wheel wasn’t right and close inspection was way off line, I checked the parts diagram and realised I’d fitted the spacers incorrectly once that was sorted I fitted the seal and speedo replacement spacer and all was good.

Next was the speedo pickup, soI cut a small slot in the bottom of the fork protector and attached it with a cable tie. Seemed the most pragmatic solution without spending hours making a bracket.

Also removed the sidestand cutout switch, as the sidestand didn’t operate it properly and there was no way it was every going to be 100% reliable due to how poorly it was made in the first place. I made a small loop connector to join the ends together.

Drilled the footrest and mount for the new pins, I did one side ages ago and never got round to the left so finished that and repainted the mount and footrest after drilling the holes out to 10mm.

Then I spotted the lockstop plate barely hit the lockstops so lifted it with a couple of washers and fitted the new front spocket cover.



Chain Guides and Shock Guard

Started sorting the chain guides and ran into a few issues. The guides supplied by CCM are for 520 chains and as 644 models use a 525 you need to open up the front guide to make it fit properly, or just let the chain cut its own path, I went for the former using a dremel and sanding drum.

I replaced the lower chain tensioner’s plastic guide with a nylon one from Haines and the lower rear guide still thinking about its purpose, as not sure it adds any value. I fitted the new nylon part by heating it in a cup of boiling water then attached a nut and bolt to one end and gently bent it to shape, will change the nuts for nylock ones.

Once the guides were in place I rivetted the chain together and discovered another issue, the chain hits the tyre. After speaking with Anthony at Haines I adjusted the rim by offsetting it slightly to the right by attaching my dial indicator to the swingarm and loosening and tighting opposite spokes until I had clearance.

Fitted a new rubber shock guard, requires 4mm x 10mm rivets, I added some 4mm washers to the back to ensure the rivet clamped on to the holders. typically ran out of rivets, sigh!