A Peek Inside

I’m sorry I haven’t updated in a while. Truthfully, I think deep down I’m feeling kind of intimidated by the next steps so I’ve been hesitant to get back in the garage. It’s also been hot and I’ve been tired so those were factors too. Today Brendan was out of town and I had nothing to do so I ended up sitting around until 2 pm until I finally was convinced to sit down with Betty. No major updates, but got to look inside the cylinder today, which was exciting for me.

First I started by removing the exhaust. Not exciting so didn’t take a picture. Next I noticed that there was a massive dead spider right on the bolt head that I needed to unscrew. Like I said, Brendan isn’t around so I woman’d-up and grabbed the vacuum and got rid of the sucker. (If that didn’t work I was gonna throw in the towel cause ain’t no way I was going to put my hand near that thing). I unscrewed the 4 bolts holding on the cylinder head by going a half turn each and switching in diagonal order, as my manual told me. The head came right off and voila, the piston!

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This was pretty exciting for me because while I know how an engine works, I’ve never actually looked inside a cylinder (which was the point of this project!). Very cool. I was expecting there to be a gasket between the cylinder barrel and the head, but there isn’t which was surprising. Guess that’s why I couldn’t find that part anywhere, ha! Here’s the cylinder head:

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It’s clearly very warped and old and likely needs to be replaced, but I read that they’re pretty cheap/easy to replace. It looks like there was some leakage, so hopefully a replacement will give me better compression. This was also really cool for me to see, especially the dome shape on top and the carbon deposits.

Next I tried getting the cylinder barrel off but it was really stuck and I might be missing a bolt or something to unscrew, so I decided not to push it. The piston does move in there, which is good, and at first glance the inside of the cylinder seems to be in pretty good shape (no visible scratches). I’m sure the piston rings would like to be replaced, so I may try to get the barrel off to check on that. Otherwise they’ll just have to deal. Inside:

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I ended up wrapping a paper towel around the cylinder to keep stuff from getting in it while it’s exposed. I’m not sure if I needed to do that, but it seems like a clean/delicate environment so I figured better safe than sorry.

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I think my next step needs to be to head to the store and get some parts. If I’m going to take the flywheel off and look at the stator (not sure what I would do with it…), I’ll need a tool or two for removing the flywheel (a flywheel puller and a tool to keep it from rotating). I’m also thinking about bringing the magneto in to see if I can replace it or what I should do with it, because I feel like that may be what I need to get a spark but I’m really not sure. Unfortunately the local shop isn’t open on Sundays and only for a few hours on Saturday mornings, so I have to find a time after work during the week. Hopefully I can find some time/energy this week.

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