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Small motor reassembly: using what you have

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  • Small motor reassembly: using what you have

    I've got a 1964 Honda Benly that I'm going through. I've disassembled 95% of the motor and opted to not have it machined, there's just nothing wrong with it.

    That said, all the parts have spent the last month or so soaking in Kerosene, and the case halves will be completely degreased and painted. It's all metal on metal. It's a spinny little sucker with roller bearings rather than babbit ones, if that matters.

    Having a Machineshop, I've got Vactra Way oil, spindle oil, a little mobile one, some heavy gear grease (both with and without moly).

    Is any of this acceptable for a motor that won't need breaking in, but needs a little initial lube before first start on reassembly?

  • #2
    No grease... just use oil. Vactra isn't engine oil; Mobil One will be ok, but why not just use the the oil you'll put in the engine before starting?


    • #3
      I put a few drops of STP on every bearing surface when I build an engine.
      Also used another brand that has teflon in it.


      • #4
        Originally posted by lakeside53 View Post
        No grease... just use oil. Vactra isn't engine oil; Mobil One will be ok, but why not just use the the oil you'll put in the engine before starting?
        I can...there's just going to be a long time between it going together, and going back into the bike. After the motor is assembled, the rest of the bike will get stripped and painted. I hadn't researched the oil yet, it's some 50weight that's wet clutch compatible.


        • #5
          I use Castrol 20-50 in all the little Honda engines I put together. That motor has an electric starter that should make it easy to turn over once in awhile as it sits. Just leave it full of oil and a put a few drops into the cylinders before you crank it. And before you start it change that oil.

          No machining? You'll want to do a light hone on the cylinders at least.

          Can you tell how many miles are on the motor? Unless it is very low and has not been beat up, there are other things to check for.


          • #6
            If you want to go 'high tech' you can get some engine assembly lube from a place like Jegs, or Summit.


            • #7
              Not being familiar with the term "Benly", is it equipped with an oil pressure switch/warning light? If so, just make an adapter to hook up a pump type oil can and pre-pressurize the oiling system before putting it into hibernation.

              Then do the same thing again before waking it up. I'd spin spin it over with the plugs out to thoroughly distribute the oil before actually starting it.

              "Accuracy is the sum total of your compensating mistakes."

              "The thing I hate about an argument is that it always interrupts a discussion." G. K. Chesterton


              • #8
                I was trying to KEEP from going High tech by using something I'd already bought.

                The Benly is a two cylinder, 4 stroke, SOHC, 150cc motor.

                Untitled by Matey-O, on Flickr

                Untitled by Matey-O, on Flickr

                This bike got 'put' into storage after the guy ditched it in sand early in the 1980's. Bent the footpegs, broke the shifter, bent the fender, and that's about it. At some point the speedo cable broke, so the bike's got something north of 8500 miles on it.

                There's minor (can't feel 'em with a fingernail) scoring in the bores below where the rings travel, and absolutely no marring of the rings. Aside from a minor alignment issue with the replacement shifter shaft, I haven't found anything wrong with the motor...I got it running just before teardown, ran it for 2 or 3 minutes, then tore it apart.
                (I hadn't wiped out the bore before taking the picture, I need to do that once I pull it out of the deruster)

                Untitled by Matey-O, on Flickr

                More build pics here:


                • #9
                  You got it that far apart, you should at least hone it and put in a new set of rings.


                  • #10
                    Do you spec the rings based on what the machinist finds? I'm a little short on the particular tools enginebuilders have.


                    • #11
                      That cylinder is going to need at least a light deglaze job. Honda uses a chrome compression ring and you'll have trouble with them seating if you don't. Looks very usable. Also with that amount of mileage I'd take a close look at the top ring groove of the pistons. They can get sloppy and the rings will twist and not live very long. If they are not worn to badly you can use them again. There are some old tricks that can make them a little better. You can knurl the pistons to swell them back up or get them really hot and squeeze them in a vise.

                      You are going to replace the rings, right? Can you find any?

                      It gets to be a judgement call working on these old motors. Parts are getting very hard to find. Sometimes you just have to use what you have on hand.

                      Love that blue silicone.


                      • #12
                        Surprisingly, 60's honda parts are reasonably easy to find...from Thailand. It's a well known and copied design. Oversized pistons and rings are available, but I was hoping not to have to do that with what amounts to a just-broken-in 50 year old motor.

                        I've got a NOS gasket set, and I'll be sourcing seals as at leas one of them was leaking (making a mess with oil and seeds the mice brought in.) It's an interesting little project full of things like 'do I convert to 12 volts?', 'am I happy going blackwall when whitewalls are _6_ times more money?'

                        I'm working with an initial outlay of $200, and it's going to be the 10 year old boy's first motorcycle, so there's some necessary fiscal limitation.


                        • #13
                          When I have assembled engines that are stored for later use, I coat the internals with a mixture of Lucas Oil Stabilizer, using about 10-15% of the product, a specific preservative oil, and an anti rust called CamGuard. I know you have seen the Lucas product, they used to have a little demo on almost all parts counters with two sets of gears activated by a hand crank. The treated oil will rise to lubricate the upper most gear while the untreated oil will only rise to the second level no matter how fast you try to turn the crank. This Lucas product is a tackifier and it will prevent long term surface oil depletion. For the base oil, I use Shell aircraft preservative oil, AeroShell Fluid 2F; it has limited additives and is specifically formulated for long term storage. The CamGuard is proven to protect wear surfaces in piston aircraft engines, automotive applications and small engines. I spoke with the chemists at both Shell and CamGuard and they "approved" the combination I have concocted. I don't have the tackifier in the airplane engine since the Lucas product is not FAA approved.

                          "Lucas Oil Stabilizer is a 100% petroleum product formulated to eliminate dry starts and reduce friction, heat and wear in any type of engine. It allows motor oils a higher degree of lubricity which reduces oil consumption and operating temperatures. Use Lucas Oil Stabilizer in gear oil to stop leaks, reduce operating temperatures and increase the life of the gear oil. Since it is pure petroleum, it can safely blend with all other automotive lubricants, even synthetics, ATF and mineral oil. It keeps old engines alive and new engines new."

                          "AeroShell Fluid 2F is normally used as a preservation grade engine oil for the internal preservation of engines or engine parts and accessories during moderate outdoor to long-term indoor storage periods."

                          "CamGuard Small Engine provides a residual film and excellent anti-scuff protection
                          during “dry starts” when the engine has been sitting.
                          CamGuard Small Engine contains powerful multi-metal corrosion inhibitors that
                          prevent rust and corrosion during offseason storage"


                          BTW, a Benly was my first motorcycle and I replaced it with a new 305 Scrambler in '67 which I still have.
                          Last edited by mooney1el; 12-22-2012, 09:57 PM.


                          • #14
                            I don't expect the motor to be sitting very long after assembly, I'm most concerned that there's adequate lubrication for that first startup under power. Wonder where I'd source the CamGuard?


                            • #15
                              If it is not going to be sitting for over a month or so, I would then just use a good assembly lube available at good auto parts stores. Personally, I use Red Line Assembly Lube available here if not somewhere near you;

                              I buy the CamGuard at the airplane exhibitions, either Sun-N-Fun or Oskosh because I can usually get it for a better price than the on-line pricing from places like Amazon or SkyGeek;

                              You have a PM
                              Last edited by mooney1el; 12-22-2012, 10:22 PM.