Starting from square one...

Discussion in 'General Questions' started by sdratler, Mar 26, 2014.

  1. sdratler

    sdratler New Member

    Are there any books available for someone who has no experience with these engines that start from just explaining what each part of the engine does and goes step by step through the entire building process. All of the videos I have seen on youtube seem to skip lots of steps, and allot of the posts designated as instructions for beginners assume the builder already has some knowledge of how these engines work. I'm even willing to pay someone to make a complete video from unpacking the box to ridding and maintenance.

  2. bluegoatwoods

    bluegoatwoods Well-Known Member

    I think maybe I've seen such books and DVDs and such marketed on Amazon or eBay. But I doubt if they're really worth much. They'll have the same flaw, e.g.; they'll leave something out.

    But you don't really need that anyway. Just start putting your kit together, following whatever instructions you do have. Most of it'll be pretty obvious. Some of it will take a bit of thought.

    And if you do run into trouble, then just come right on back here. Start a new thread asking how to fix, or install, the issue. Be specific. Start by telling just what type of engine/drivetrain you have. I'm going to assume that you've got a 2 cycle engine with direct chain drive to the left side of the rear wheel, since that's the most common type. But go ahead and say so when you post your question. Ask, for instance, 'how do I get that drive sprocket on straight?' Or if, for instance, you've got it all together but you're having engine starting/running issues then make it clear whether or not you're getting any ignition at all. Things like that.

    State the problem clearly and you'll find all sorts of helpful folks here who sincerely want to be helpful.

    You'll do fine.

    Best of luck.
  3. OneLittleVictory

    OneLittleVictory New Member

    I have a couple of the installation disks included with the Bikeberry kits. They are probably a bit better than some of those Youtube videos.
  4. butre

    butre Well-Known Member

    I built my first bike with no instruction whatsoever. It seems to me like there's so much that'll go wrong with some of the junk in these kits if you can't figure out how to build it without a whole lot of help you'll be hopeless when it comes to fixing it every 10 miles for the first 40. If there's anything you do need help with though, you got a big forum with probably 400 active members that have all been through the same thing you'll go through.

    The best advice I can give is to start with the right bike. I started with a Magna Rip Curl beach cruiser with upgraded wheels and have had more motor parts fail than bike parts.
  5. butterbean

    butterbean Well-Known Member

    To be honest, the amount of detail you are asking for/expecting is 1), difficult to gather into one cohesive whole, and 2), somewhat unnecessary.

    While it is good to learn the ins and outs of your bike and engine, it's a bit much to expect to know everything there is to know before even assembling your kit.

    Most of what you NEED to know is related to a few categories: maintenance, repair, tuning and how to ride. When I say how to ride, I mean this. Two strokes have many tuning capabilities that can get the engine to perform in different ways. Depending on how it's tuned, riding it in a way that it's not tuned for can sometimes be bad for the engine.

    As you go along, you will begin to learn things. You will start learning how to ride from day one, becoming more intuitive of your surroundings and riding accordingly. This is something no book can teach.

    You will learn tuning as you read through the forums and decide what you want your bike to do. There are limits, but there are some modifications which range from the simple external mods to the extreme internal modifications that can increase these limits. But the farther you push, the riskier it can be if you don't know what you're doing. Don't go digging into the internals of the engine until you have a very good idea what you're doing and a high level of understanding regarding tuning.

    Maintenance and repair. You will learn some of this right away, the rest as you go and we are here to help. With no prior mechanical experience, your first build is not likely to come out "pristine" without help. Fortunately, that's what we are here for. Some parts are likely to fail during assembly, some will need to be replaced and some can be creatively repaired. We can suggest some creative repairs, as some are safe and acceptable and others are not.
  6. sdratler

    sdratler New Member

    I agree to what you're saying but if a person doesn't know for example what each moving part on the carburetor does than he's not going to get to the stage of so to speak learning one step at a time like you described. What I'm suggesting be done is that someone who works with these engines full time make a concise instructional video covering everything one would would need to know. There is no reason that a video of the sort should be longer than an hour and a half, and it definitely wouldn't be be so difficult for a person knowledgeable enough in the construction of these engines to put it together. Also a video of the sorts could potentially boost the publicity of the company who would put it out.

    If anyone reads this and is willing to do so please send me an Email and we'll talk business:cool:
  7. Fabian

    Fabian Well-Known Member

    You will just have to stick around and use the seach function on the site to answer all of your questions.

    Sometimes being spoon fed information from one source isn't the best method of building your knowledge base.


    if you are willing to pay, i'll make a prolixly long video to satisfy your requirements.

    How much are you willing to pay?
  8. velzie

    velzie Member

    For information about 2-strokes you'll want to read A.Graham Bell and Gordon Jennings books. They are geared to performance enhancement, but you will learn much about these motors. Tuner's Handbook.pdf

    With patience and this forum you should have little difficulty with MB kits. I knew nothing of 2-strokes and attempted some modifications and my motor still runs!
  9. butterbean

    butterbean Well-Known Member

    Knowing everything ahead of time and learning as you go are two different things. You DONT need to know what every single microscopic part does in order to learn as you go. I built my first bike on my own with absolutely NO prior knowledge of mechanics. I had no one to help me or tell me how to put it together or how it worked. I didn't know about this forum. If I ran into a problem, a phone call to my dad or grandpa was about the closest I came to a "forum". My dad and grandpa are both mechanically knowledgeable, but neither of them could tell you exactly what all the moving parts in a carburetor do without looking at it. There are different types of carbs that work different ways. So I got my first bike built, but being a newbie, of course it wasn't perfect. I learned more as I went along. Eventually it became road worthy and stayed on the road until my friend destroyed the frame after I gave it to him. I even moved 50 miles on it in the middle of a nasty winter. With my second bike, I found different parts like suspension forks and a better seat, and eventually replaced every single pedal power component on the bike. Did this with no research or book or person to tell me how. When I got tired of two strokes, I moved on to a 98cc 4 stroke minibike engine. That's sitting on a 100% custom schwinn, which I had to rebuild from the bare frame up. I had some help, and I might have needed to look a few things up along the way, but I didn't read it out of a book or watch a video. I just did it. This bike is fully decked out with motorcycle forks, a moped headlight, a brake light, and a 12v battery with a generator and charging system. If I can do all this, anyone can. I picked up knowledge as I went and used that knowledge to build the best custom bike I was capable of. Are there better bikes out there than mine? Sure. But my bike came out looking how I wanted, it performs according to how I designed it, and it's reliable. If someone is willing to be paid to make a video, more power to them. But I feel a h*ll of a lot prouder knowing I learned how to build my bike hands on rather than reading out of a book or watching an instructional video.
  10. sdratler

    sdratler New Member

    The difference between me and you is that you do this for a hobby I need this bike to get to work. I don't have the time to spends hours tinkering with unnecessary aesthetic modifications, and I certainly don't care about feeling proud. However I do understand were your coming from. If this were my hobby I would feel the same way (and I do about building fishing rods).
  11. butterbean

    butterbean Well-Known Member

    I respect the fact that you need your bike to get back and forth to work. I built my current ride to be as reliable as possible, because I was going to use it to go back and forth to work as well. And I did ride it back and forth to work every day till it got too cold and the roads got bad. The only reason I built it to look good is because I figured if I'm building it from the ground up, I might as well make it look good while I'm at it. A lot of people mistake it for an old motorcycle, which was the plan from the start. But the point is that this is not just a hobby for me, which is why I built the best bike I could. And my main point was, you don't need to know how every single part works in order to put it together. You will need to understand certain things in order to make adjustments that might be necessary. For example, once the engine is broken in, you might need to adjust the carb. The best way to tell is to do a plug chop. You would need to know how to do a plug chop and what color the tip of the plug should be (it's not hard to do). If the plug is not the right color, you will need to adjust the carb accordingly and do another plug chop. All you need to know to adjust the carb is which way to move the position on the throttle needle to adjust the fuel mixture (if the plug isn't the right color, then the fuel mixture isn't right). After several adjustments and plug chops, if you're still not seeing the right color, you may have an air leak and you will need to know how to look for one. But for now, put the kit together and see how it runs. If you have problems, let us know what they are and we can help you troubleshoot. Ain't but so many things can stop one of these engines from running right. My point is, you will spend A LOT more time trying to learn all this stuff than you will getting your hands dirty. And whether or not you care about feeling proud, you WILL be proud of yourself once you get one of these suckers on the road. When I ordered my first kit, it was just supposed to be for transportation as well. Once I rode it and saw how much fun it was, I was hooked and it was about so much more than transportation. I'm trying to help you. Trust me when I say taking it one step at a time is best. Have confidence in yourself, trust us to help you and above all try to have fun while you're at it. If you're not having fun, then this hobby/sport/transportation is not for you. These bikes almost always cost more than a used motorcycle in the long run. If all you need is cheap transportation now, should have got a scooter. That's not being disrespectful. Be prepared to spend more than you would have on a used scooter and a lot of your free time fixing it. I hope you have another way to work.
  12. Fabian

    Fabian Well-Known Member

    Just get yourself the Deluxe shift kit with the White Industries Heavy Duty Freewheel, and then order the optional left hand side chain tensioner and the optional right hand side chain tensioner.
    This arrangement will give all the reliability you require.

    If wishing to spec things up a little and add more broad spectrum functionality to your bike, you should order the optional 9 tooth and 48 tooth jackshaft sprockets, as well as the optional 24 tooth and 30 tooth sprockets, so enabling a dual speed front derailleur operated mechanism.

    If wishing to use the bike for off-road touring purposes, you will need to add/install a comprehensive final drive chain stabilisation system.
  13. velzie

    velzie Member

    If you want reliability out of a MB you'll want a 4-stroke kit, a mechanic and money to pay the mechanic for him to do the work for you. Or get a scooter. If you want to learn about how to do it yourself, read more of this forum. Search for 'reliability' and you will find much advice. It may be discouraging at first, but it really is't difficult.This is a great community of helpful people, but I doubt many of them will spoon feed all the info you may require (not knowing your background). Unless you pay them.Hopefully, when you get the kit, you will love it as much as the rest of us do.
  14. butterbean

    butterbean Well-Known Member

    Oh yeah, cause you can really tell from the conversation that this guy is ready for a shift kit. He doesn't even want to put it together without knowing what every single part in the carburetor does, and you're going to throw him a shift kit. You have a knack for quoting people out of context.
  15. Fabian

    Fabian Well-Known Member

    I started from the word go with the shift kit and endured 2 years of pain and heartache getting the engine to run efficiently and designing & getting the shift kit fitted with chain tensioners and getting the final drive train to work reliably.

    Now you can purchase "all" of these accessory products and assemble a reliable motorized bicycle with a high level of functionality.

    The hard work has already been done.
  16. butterbean

    butterbean Well-Known Member

    I don't think you got the point of what I said. The guy doesn't even want to put a carburetor on without knowing everything there is to know about it, and you're recommending a shift kit. I don't know how many ways I can say it with you continuing to miss the point. Not to mention the guy has no mechanical knowledge at all. I would not have attempted a shift kit on my first bike. In fact, I still don't have one.
  17. velzie

    velzie Member

    Its funny how we continue without input from sdratler... Best thing to do may be to ask one of the sellers of built MBs. Maybe one of these people live close by.
  18. butterbean

    butterbean Well-Known Member

    I just think it's funny how some shifters think a shift kit is the answer to everything. The guy hasn't even built a bike yet and here is someone already pushing a shift kit on him. Makes me wonder how much sbp is paying Fabian?
  19. battery

    battery Member

    I think a shift kit is great! but depending on location and need. if you live in a very hilly place it is for you. but if you live in the great plains or somewhere really flat the single speed with chain tensioner heavily reinforced would be the most reliable possible setup to get you to work on time. not putting the shift kit down it is amazing. but more parts equal more to fail.
    as for learning how to set up and use your engine. simply read the manual follow manufactureres specs and take a test ride. learn about the plug color due to jetting and get a good chain tensioner.
  20. Fabian

    Fabian Well-Known Member

    Crikey, you are still living in the dark ages.