21 June 2018 – I called Bert’s Mega Mall to check on my “J” nut and guess what? I was talking with the parts guy who ordered my parts. Excelente!!! I asked him, if my “J” nut has come in yet for my Kawasaki KLR650. He said he would have to check. So, I wait and until he gets back to me. Yes, they’re in. He says, we have two of them. Imagine that. I told him, I would be down to pick them up shortly. Larry and I jump into the car and went down to Bert’s Mega Mall and picked up the nuts. I took one of the bolts along to double check that we received the correct “J” nut. Yep, we got the right one. He asked if I wanted the second nut. I told him yes and I would keep it for spare parts. Off we go. I will have my motorcycle assembled before the day is over.
When we get home, I’m going to remove the spark plug and check the gap on it. I checked the gap and it has seen considerable erosion in the last 20,000 miles / 32187 kilometers. I went to my spare parts bag and pulled out a new spark plug, I set the gap, put some anti-seize paste on the threads, screwed it into the head and tightened it. I hooked up the spark plug wire and filled the carburetor with gasoline. I started the motorcycle to make sure the spark worked ok and then let the engine run till it ran out of gas. I gathered up my top motor mount parts and assembled them into the frame and the engine head. I inserted the 3 bolts thru the two side plates and thru the frame. I screwed the nuts on finger tight. I screwed on the precious “J” nut that I waited so long for. I know why that nut is so special. You can’t get a wrench into the small area where this “J” nut is located. Before I put the “J” nut on the bolt, I put Blue Loctite on the threads so they will lock up after they are tightened. I also put Blue Loctite on the other two bolts. I then tightened all three bolts to the correct torque. I set my gas tank on the frame and screwed in the two gas tank mounting screws at the rear of the tank. I hooked up the vacuum hose to the vacuum fitting at the rear of the gas tank and secured the clamp. I bolted the right and left front mounting brackets into place. I inserted the blue spacer between the gas tank and the radiator. The purpose of that spacer is to prevent air passing by the left side of the radiator. With the gap closed the air pressure in front of the motorcycle forces more air thru the radiator. That in turn cools the engine more efficiently. I zip tied the blue spacer in place so it won’t be forced out with wind pressure while I’m riding. With both front mounting brackets tightened, my gas tank is back on my motorcycle.
Next, I’ll check that both battery cables are tightened securely. I don’t want them rattling loose in the middle of the desert. So, they are tight. Next, I put on the seat and tighten both side bolts. I will now put on 2 ea. side covers. Two bolts per side cover and we're done. My motorcycle is starting to look like a motorcycle again. All I have left is to put on my two saddle bags. That’s pretty easy. Insert the two mounting tabs over the bottom rail, slide it back till it’s in the correct position, push the saddle bag up against the top rail and screw in the M10 bolt until tight. Your saddle bags are mounted. There is a word of caution. When you position them forward or aft…….if they are too far forward they will interfere with the passenger foot pegs. If they are positioned to far aft, they can affect how your motorcycle handles. I set them far enough back so they don’t interfere with the passenger foot pegs and call it good. I have never had any handling problems with the saddle bags in that position. My motorcycle is back in one piece again and ready to ride.
Next, I will gather up all my tools and put everything back in their respective places and tool bags. With that completed I will put my tools and spare parts back in my saddle bags. I am going to hook up my gas line to my gas tank. I’m going to adjust my rear chain now that my motorcycle is setting on its tires. I also need to check tire pressure. Then I’m going to take my motorcycle out and drive it to find out if my gas tank is operating correctly. The gas in my tank is pumped up to another level where it flows into my carburetor. I want to make sure that this is happening. Off I go for a ride thru the neighborhood. I will ride 10 or 15 minutes to burn several float bowls of fuel and if it doesn’t stall out, my vacuum pump is working ok. The gas tank seems to be working correctly. I’m going to wrap up this bike work for today.