Make oil changes easier, less messy

Discussion in '4-Stroke Engines' started by HoughMade, Sep 25, 2008.

  1. HoughMade

    HoughMade Guest

    I have a Honda GXH50 with a Grubee gearbox. It's a good setup, but when it comes time to change the oil, it gets a little messy. There is a "convenient" drain plug...but when you take it out, the oil will get all over the mounting plate because it is not convenient to get a funnel or anything under it to catch the oil.

    Here's what I did- I was thinking of how the oil is drained on a Harley Sportster- you loosen a hose and drain right out of the hose. Why not do the same on this?

    The standard drain plug is 8mm. I went down to the hardware store and found a brass plumbing fixture with a male threaded end (part of a compression fitting) that is slightly larger than 8mm- the other end had standard 1/4" pipe thread. I cut standard 8mm threads in the fitting (helps to have a tap and die set) and then drilled the inside of the fitting out so that there would be more flow. On the other end of the fitting, I put a hose barb, then attached about 8 to 10 inches of 1/4" fuel the end of the hose is the original petcock from the tank (engine has its own fuel cutoff). Of course, because we are dealing with the all important engine oil, I used worm drive clamps at the hose connections- don't want to have one come loose (if the worse happens, the Honda engine has an automatic low oil cutoff switch).

    The hose is now held away from moving parts, up in the air by the seat tube. When it comes time to change oil, just make sure the engine is nice and warm, unclip the hose and point the hose into a drain pan, and open the petcock- drains slower, but drains well. Want to speed it up? Just plug the end of the hose and don't use the petcock. Take the plug out and it will flow better. Still slower than an open drain hole, but it goes where you want it.

    Pics to follow.

  2. HoughMade

    HoughMade Guest

    In this pic, you can see that the hose starts to the left of the seat tube (when facing front)- where the drain hole on the engine is. The hose goes around the seat tube and has the petcock on the end. It is held up in the air attached by a bracket I made that supports a PCV valve that is attached to the crankcase breather (my mod because I eliminated the original air box). You could attach it to anything in the vicinity.

    Attached Files:

  3. RogerS

    RogerS Member

    Did you fab that tank yourself?
  4. Mountainman

    Mountainman Active Member

    drain hose

    just one more little thing added to one

    fine looking motor bike

    every time I see that MB
    I want to ride something such as that
    teaching this older guy
    one day at a time
    happy with what I have..

    so as to Ride That Thing - Mountainman
  5. HoughMade

    HoughMade Guest

    Yes- it is a cover that was made from a foam-board form, covered with fiberglass. The cover is over and permanently bonded to the standard metal gas tank. Some day I would like to fab a tank from sheetmetal to replace it.

    ...and thank, Mountain man. Now that she runs strong, it's a real joy to ride. Sure gets the looks.
  6. fetor56

    fetor56 Guest

    Can we see some close-up pics?
  7. HoughMade

    HoughMade Guest

    Will get them as soon as I can.
  8. HoughMade

    HoughMade Guest

    I think pic will explain things.

    Attached Files:

  9. Irish John

    Irish John Guest

    A brilliant idea HoghMade. How is the top end of the hose held in place so it doesn't drop down? can't quite see in the photo.
    In Australia obviously we drain from above because we are at the bottom of the globe.
  10. HoughMade

    HoughMade Guest

    In back of the hose, you can see an aluminum bracket screwed to the engine. That bracket is "L" shaped (upside down). Because I do not use the original air box, and i did not want the crank vent hose just open, I grabbed a PCV valve from the local auto parts stor to plug the end of the hose but provide venting. The "L" bracket supports the hose and PCV valve. Also, a 14 ga copper wire is twisted onto it. I just put a nut on the end of the petcock so the twisted copper wire loop would have something to go around.

    I hope that isn't too confusing.
  11. fetor56

    fetor56 Guest

    Another possible drain hose,made from:
    Long 8mm bolt(only threaded part way)
    2/8mm nuts
    Tyre valve(with metal cap)


  12. HoughMade

    HoughMade Guest

    I like it!
  13. I use a straw. I suck it out,spit it in a cup. About 20 times drains it completely.
    It's fun!
    The 7-11 straws are cool because it's extra long.
    The McDonald's straws are cool too cause it's extra thick.
  14. Irish John

    Irish John Guest

    I think both fetor's & HoughMade's ideas are superb but Fetor's transparent tubing wins because it enables you to see how dirty the oil is. The only reason I won't be doing either just yet is because I bought 20 strong earth magnets to put on my plugs and on the Honda I find quite a lot of metallic residue on the plug when I unscrew it for an oil change. I don't find nearly so much residue on the HS motor strangely enough. I thought this was because the Honda is more precisely engineered so the parts rub closer together but there is a small possibility it is because the earth magnet fits perfectly into the recess at the end of the Honda nut whereas the end of the HS drain plug is smooth and the magnet usually drops off the HS plug when I have to use a spanner to loosen it. I put it back on immediately before unscrewing the rest of the way but the momentary demagnetisation might account for less metallic residue. Whatever the reason I couldn't bear to change this magnet idea and am prepared to put up with oil all over my tray and lower frame parts as it drips into a plastic basin below. I put the bike on a workstand and run it for 10 mins with engine flush added before draining. Then I tilt the bike with the front wheel up and the back wheel down to avoid too much mess when draining. If I could adapt the hose idea to take a magnetised plug it would be ideal. I really love the ideas on this forum. Is your tyre valve a bike valve or car valve Fetor? Presumably you have to drill through the length of the 8mm bolt to make it hollow?
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 4, 2008
  15. Irish John

    Irish John Guest

    Thanks Houghmade, What is the gizmo I've annotated on your photo shown below? Is it some sort of little oil filter?

    Attached Files:

  16. HoughMade

    HoughMade Guest

    That's the PCV valve hanging from the end of the aluminum "L" bracket. If I didn't want the complete "vintage" look, I'd go with the clear tubing too.
  17. fetor56

    fetor56 Guest

    It's a bike valve,just remove as much rubber as possible then burn the rest of the rubber off & then clean it up.

    Your right,u do hollow out the bolt after you've cut it to length.....that was the trickiest part of the project(drilling precisely approx 50mm through the bolt)
    I used a drill press that i purchased NEW from K-Mart for $20(it was the last one they had)

    I've given it some thought previously & i can't think of a way to incorporate the magnet idea with the drain hose....hopefually someone else will.

    Agreed that VERY LITTLE metal residue comes from the HuaSheng engine,that's why i swapped to the drain hose idea but i've never run that Honda engine pictured.
    When my Titan(basically HuaSheng engine) needs a service i'll add a drain hose.

    There are a few other minor parts used:
    pipe tape for the bolt threat
    acrylic resin glue when i locked the 2 nuts together.

    Great how ppl from work together for a common purpose,should happen more often. :cool:
  18. Irish John

    Irish John Guest

    Thanks lads, HoughMade I should have guessed that it was truth to the period that stopped you using clear plastic tubing. I like how the hose goes around the seat tube - a nice touch that. I want to get my hands on some flickety dial speedos in metric km\hr for my Fosscati FG4 Billinudgel Bullets.
    Fetor I think I'll change the HS to the drain pipe idea. I got a drill press from KMart too - a MacMaster I think it is and I've been drilling my 57mm holes in my rear sprockets with it but to drill through the middle of an 8mm bolt leaving 1.5mm around the hole would present problems securing the bolt vertically to the drilling plate. How did you do it?
    I'd meant to ask you Fetor how you did the throttle on the Honda. I saw you'd taken off the governor completely. I've only done it by leaving the governor on and attaching a cable to it but my most successful method is to use a HS carby but I've run out of HS motors to rob carbys from. Houghmades method works well but it's a bit too finickity for me with all those springs & struts.
    Re the drain plug hose maybe you could drill through an earth magnet on your drill press and put it either between the two nuts or between the nut & the washer.
    PS: Here's how I drill the sprockets for the Nexus 7 hubs. I stick the drawing on the sprocket & drill straight through it cos it's at full scale. Setting the holes out would be too hard any other way.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 4, 2008
  19. fetor56

    fetor56 Guest

    I havn't done the throttle on the Honda yet...i'm waiting for an Electra Cruiser i've ordered to come-in.....the latest from the dealership is sometime this month.
    Once it's in i'll team the Honda with a Grubee kit i've got & possibly use HoughMade's throttle linkage idea(or make-up my own;depends)

    We have the SAME drill press....if your going to go ahead with this idea buy a GOOD drill press vice,their invaluable(see pic)
    Cut your bolt to length(approx50mm) then screw as many nuts as possible to it(probably 4) so your not putting undue pressure on the bolt when you've got it in the vice.
    Preferably use cobalt drill bits and drill 2 small pilot holes from both sides(roughly meeting in the centre)
    Expand those pilot holes to desired diameter.
    You'll be putting the bolt into the drill press vice a few times so be accurate with it's vertical alignment.

    Governor:that small rod coming out of the engine(the one with the clip on it) is the driving force for the governor....anything externally connected downstream of that will immobilise the governor.

    Gotta go. :)
  20. Irish John

    Irish John Guest

    Thanks Fetor,
    I'll get a drill press vice like that one but how does it attach to the drill press tray? It would need to fix to the tray to stay stable wouldn't it?
    That Electra you're buying - they are so well made compared to the steel Schwinn D7 but they don't have front V-brakes or do they have to supply front brakes cos of Aussie laws. The Townie has hyraulic forks like an MTB with front V-brakes but the Californian Beach Cruiser model of Electra has rigid front forks with a head tube too long to take a springer fork. I couldn't go back to rigid forks after trying the springer although the difference in price is $400 between the Schwinn Alloy 7 and Deluxe 7 with a springer.
    Will you not have problems fitting the Grubee tray on the Electra because of the tremendous length between seat tube and down tube? If you can get the Electra working for you I am really interested because frankly I'm sick of paying $820 for the D7 (I've bought three at that price) and then there were the three I tried to import from Indonesia when I lost $2000 in a scam. Electras may be expensive but the quality is so much better. I wonder can they take a 1 piece crank. I bought up 5 old one piece cranks from Bicycle-Engines.Com because now they only have those hideous 3 piece ones with short cranks and a spindle that I can't bear to look at even in welding goggles!
    I'm very interested in what you do with your Honda because I'm looking for something better than a Schwinn D7 that is easier to build. If you ever get a Nexus 7 or 8 spd hub I'm your man for custom made sprocket mounting kit.
    Incidentally the 48T rear sprocket is definitely better on the Honda than the HS. The 44T chainring that comes with the Grubee kit is fantastic on a Nexus 7 hub cos it allows you to pedal at speeds of 40 km\hr without pedalling in thin air but the hubs are too expensive to buy singly.
    Oh yes, I forgot, I connected my throttle to the right hand side of the governor mechanism so the governor doesn't affect the throttle. I left all the governor in place but I don't know if I needed to. warren at ZBox could have sold me HS carbys but he's getting out of supplying Hoot kits cos of the life-threatening quality of the gear box.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 4, 2008