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  1. #1

    Anyone else ever use wooden golf "T's" to block off fuel lines during a rebuild?

    Threw my newly rebuilt 1200 non-pv into my SUV last week and put about 2 break-in hours on it with 32:1 Yamalube premix. Ran like a smokin pistol. Rode again the next week between half and 3/4 throttle with a buddy about 10 miles of crappie fishing and decided it was broken in enough so asked him to race me on his SUV to see how well I did on the rebuild. Nice even match out of the hole and about 1/2 mph slower top end max on a flat river in no wind. Nice! Got to the open lake and WHAM! It shut down cold. Fired right up and died about 35mph. Fired up and idled rough as hell. This is the same symptom my kawasaki had when I burned up a piston a few years back so I pretty much knew I had burned one. Slow tow (1-2mph) to the ramp a mile away and put it up for the night. I did a compression test and found that the middle cylinder had 0 psi. The carbs were rebuilt by me and pop-off adjusted to 55 w/no leaks, fuel tank pulled and swabbed 100% clean. The engine was bored/hoaned out to match the 3 pistons (SBT front and back and a Wiseco Platinum in the middle)...all 3 1/4 oversized. Motor pressure tested to hold 10psi for 15 minutes with a 1psi drop.

    The one thing I might have overlooked...

    When I blocked off my fuel lines during the break-down I used wooden golf T's and worm clamps to block the lines. Since I have another SUV and had to build out an XL1200 first this rebuild took me at least 2 to 3 months so the wood T's sat quite awile. When I went to install the fuel lines I pulled half of a golf T out of the one line and started to wonder if this was what it looked like when I originally put it in the line . Pulled the other T out of the second line and only the top of the T came out. I was able to shake 100% of the rest of that one out of the line easily. So, me in my infinite wisdom decided to blow into the first line to make sure it was clear. It didn't seem to give any resistance so I installed it. I can only imagine what I am going to find when I go into those carbs. I can see it now...wood shavings with the occasional fleck of white paint guaranteed! I scratched my head all day today as to what I could have possibly done wrong. I pained and labored over this thing to make SURE it was water worthy. I wanted it to be my best rebuild yet (4th 1200). I'll be willing to bet a dollar to a doughnut that when I blew in that line, the shaft of the golf T easily let the air blow past since it has a smaller diameter than the fuel line. When I was at low/medium throttle, the wood probably stayed in place but when I hit WOT I will bet it moved down line and plugged most of the fuel from the carbs. Can't wait to post pictures of this Dumb A** move! If it is what I think it is...I'm going to have to change my screen name to WoodT!

    Oh well, Winter is here and I wanted to do a "timed" break-down/install anyway to see how quickly I can do a 1200. Besides...it's only money blahhhhh!


  2. #2
    [QUOTE=gigem;2071533]Threw my newly rebuilt 1200 non-pv into my SUV last week and put about 2 break-in hours on it with 32:1 Yamalube premix. Ran like a smokin pistol. Rode again the next week between half and 3/4 throttle with a buddy about 10 miles of crappie fishing and decided it was broken in enough so asked him to race me on his SUV to see how well I did on the rebuild. Nice even match out of the hole and about 1/2 mph slower top end max on a flat river in no wind. Nice! Got to the open lake and WHAM! It shut down cold. Fired right up and died about 35mph. Fired up and idled rough as hell. This is the same symptom my kawasaki had when I burned up a piston a few years back so I pretty much knew I had burned one. Slow tow (1-2mph) to the ramp a mile away and put it up for the night. I did a compression test and found that the middle cylinder had 0 psi. The carbs were rebuilt by me and pop-off adjusted to 55 w/no leaks, fuel tank pulled and swabbed 100% clean. The engine was bored/hoaned out to match the 3 pistons (SBT front and back and a Wiseco Platinum in the middle)...all 3 1/4 oversized. Motor pressure tested to hold 10psi for 15 minutes with a 1psi drop.

    The one thing I might have overlooked...

    When I blocked off my fuel lines during the break-down I used wooden golf T's and worm clamps to block the lines. Since I have another SUV and had to build out an XL1200 first this rebuild took me at least 2 to 3 months so the wood T's sat quite awile. When I went to install the fuel lines I pulled half of a golf T out of the one line and started to wonder if this was what it looked like when I originally put it in the line . Pulled the other T out of the second line and only the top of the T came out. I was able to shake 100% of the rest of that one out of the line easily. So, me in my infinite wisdom decided to blow into the first line to make sure it was clear. It didn't seem to give any resistance so I installed it. I can only imagine what I am going to find when I go into those carbs. I can see it now...wood shavings with the occasional fleck of white paint guaranteed! I scratched my head all day today as to what I could have possibly done wrong. I pained and labored over this thing to make SURE it was water worthy. I wanted it to be my best rebuild yet (4th 1200). I'll be willing to bet a dollar to a doughnut that when I blew in that line, the shaft of the golf T easily let the air blow past since it has a smaller diameter than the fuel line. When I was at low/medium throttle, the wood probably stayed in place but when I hit WOT I will bet it moved down line and plugged most of the fuel from the carbs. Can't wait to post pictures of this Dumb A** move! If it is what I think it is...I'm going to have to change my screen name to WoodT!

    Oh well, Winter is here and I wanted to do a "timed" break-down/install anyway to see how quickly I can do a 1200. Besides...it's only money blahhhhh!

    P.S. Bill...I don't think that your jet/drill mod can fix stupid ha!

  3. #3
    Yamaha artisan Cutlass's Avatar
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    Interesting. I'll subscribe to this thread to find out what happened!

  4. #4

    Scratching my head now (missing/broken circle clips)

    Well, now I'm really scratching my head (no pun intended).

    I opened up the middle carb and found a little bit of debris in the filter on the fuel pump side and maaaaybe a bit of debris that may or may not have been wood particles. I have to say that I do not think that the golf T was my problem becauase the fuel lines were not obstructed and their was plenty of fuel sitting inside the metering side of the carb ready to dump into the N/S.

    The middle piston was fried around the exhaust edge. I'll upload pictures when I get a faster internet connection. The rear piston had some small dings in the top as well which didn't suprise me because I was somewhat expecting an issue since the compression there was only 90 or so. Pulled the cylinder and there was NO circle clip holding the wrist pin in on the rear side of the piston. I really don't think I forgot this during the rebuild because it was a new piston and it came with the heavy-duty circle clips and I didn't have any left over on the bench. Also, on the rear piston a portion of that circle clip was busted off. This did NOT happen during the install. I did re-use my wrist pin on the rear piston but the middle one was new. I did also re-use the bearings on both but they were and still look like they are in great shape.

    Potential oversight: The head that I used had that popcorn look to it from the last time the piston fried (previous owner). This motor came out of an XL1200 with the same middle piston fried. The cylinder head is off of a different ski and was bored and hoaned to spec for the new pistons. Again, carbs were flawless.

    I guess my question/s would be:

    1. Can a bent crank cause enough drama in there to frag the circle clips somehow? (doubt it).
    2. Can a popcorn fragged head cause a heat buildup that could get hot enough to fry the piston and or heat up a circle clip enough to snap it into shards?

    Regardless...through the carbs I go again and I think I am just going to do an SBT top end swap to get this bastard back on the water. Lots of crappie to catch coming up next month!

  5. #5
    Superman! fivespeedsteed's Avatar
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    i didnt figure gas would eat through wood that fast. i usually just stick a screwdriver in there and tighten the hose clamp down on it. used to use a bolt, but then i decided that over time that would hurt the inside of the hose

  6. #6
    Yamaha artisan Cutlass's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gigem View Post
    The middle piston was fried around the exhaust edge. I'll upload pictures when I get a faster internet connection. The rear piston had some small dings in the top as well which didn't suprise me because I was somewhat expecting an issue since the compression there was only 90 or so. Pulled the cylinder and there was NO circle clip holding the wrist pin in on the rear side of the piston. I really don't think I forgot this during the rebuild because it was a new piston and it came with the heavy-duty circle clips and I didn't have any left over on the bench. Also, on the rear piston a portion of that circle clip was busted off. This did NOT happen during the install. I did re-use my wrist pin on the rear piston but the middle one was new. I did also re-use the bearings on both but they were and still look like they are in great shape.

    I guess my question/s would be:

    1. Can a bent crank cause enough drama in there to frag the circle clips somehow? (doubt it).
    2. Can a popcorn fragged head cause a heat buildup that could get hot enough to fry the piston and or heat up a circle clip enough to snap it into shards?
    Well there is a right and wrong way to install the circlips. I remember I had to make sure the open ends didn't line up with the slot in the pin hole. Not sure how different the SBT and WSM Platinum (I assume thats what you meant in your first post and not Wiseco Platinum?) circlips are, but I bet the instructions for those pistons will tell you how to put them in. Do it wrong and they can walk out.

  7. #7

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    If you use pistons with circlips that take pliers to install, TAKE NOTE: Even though the instructions may not specify, there is a sharp edge and a rounded edge on the two sides. The sharp edge must face out, the rounded edge can pound its way out of the groove. Also it is a good idea to take a small socket and lightly tap it with a hammer against the pin when clips are installed. DO not hit the clip, only the pin to seat the clip on the opposite side and also to prove the clip is installed all the way.

  8. #8
    Yes you are correct, it was a WSM platinum. I guess I will have to assume I installed the circlips wrong since I had issues with 2 of them. The hard part for me to believe is that the one could partially break off but the circlip stayed in place? If there is a specific front and back side to the circlips then I know I didn't do them correctly unless by total accident they went in right.Click image for larger version. 

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  9. #9
    Myself's Avatar
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    Yes circlips have a "thrust" side. Hold them up to the light and look at the edges. One side will be kind of rounded and the other side will be sharply squared off. The sharp edge goes to the outside so it can dig in good from whatever force may be pushing on the opposite side.

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