Updated Feb 4, 2016
Here I am thinking that composing a refined, go-to instructional page about how to de-winterize your motorcycle should be as simple as reversing the pre-storage process. That’s definitely not the case. My original writings weren’t too far off but a few changes were implemented today.
Overly excited about riding before the snow has even melted, I found these inefficiencies by following my own steps. All bikes being different, my goal is to provide a basic, semi-universal approach for independent use. With that in mind, let’s consider the commonalities.
Readying your motorcycle for the riding season begins with the tank.
Oh, how my Bandit must envy my Seca. Manufactured in ’82, the Yamaha XS400RJ Seca is a naked UJM (Universal Japanese Motorcycle). Removing it’s gas tank is as simple as disconnecting an exposed fuel line, popping two nubby plastics and pulling a single bolt.
I wish I could say the same for my Bandit. Even with just a half-fairing, she flat out screams “designed to pay dealership for maintenance”. A lot of modern bikes are like that.
To pull the tank from the Bandit, I must disconnect the breather hose, remove the petcock knob, unscrew two bolts from the tank base and place a 2″ slat of plywood underneath it toward the seat. The plywood gives me just enough room to access two of the four hoses (not to mention a gas gauge metering line) which must then be disconnected using 15″ bent nose pliers. These two hoses are deep-seated by the spine of the frame for “maximum unnecessariness”. I’m to do all this without scratching any of the surrounding surfaces, all of which are painted, including the engine.
This is only half of the process, so you can see where your winterize/de-winterize execution might require a few personal notes. Writing about the Bandit’s tank is making me angry. Let’s move on.
So, why do we start with the tank?
When I winterize, one of the final steps I take is to coat the painted metals with turtle wax. When de-winterizing, it makes sense to wipe the wax from the tank (and only the tank) before pulling it to gain access to the air intake which is covered in plastic wrap that must be removed. That way you can leave the wax on elsewhere in case the process should be interrupted by, well … life.
A body in motion tends to stay in motion, so my edits aim to keep things efficient; less time consuming; schedule friendly. That’s why there’s so much activity between the application and removal of Gunk degreaser. I also placed the suspension/stationary tubes in that spot so that “all things wiping” could be over and done.
With spring approaching, my to-do list is lengthy. That’s why it’s taken three days to get one bike ready. My plan is to record video of the Seca’s single-session awakening.
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