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Old 28th January 2009, 08:14   #106
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Deepclutch,

Today I rode the bike to work. I found everything to be normal and the pick up was good. I am giving it for first service today at around ten. I will keep you informed. Yes, the clutch is pretty hard and heavy. I find it difficult to hold it in bumper to bumper traffic as my fingers start aching. Meanwhile, thanks for the guidance.
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Old 28th January 2009, 21:14   #107
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I bought my LB500 back after service. It feels smoother and much more eager to rev. The power also seems good now. That said, the kick start isn't hard and doesn't seem too different from yesterday. And it seems easy to kick with the decomp on although it is pretty hard when TDC isn't reached. The clutch also seems a wee bit lighter than before. Overall, I'm happy for now. I will go for a longer ride tomorrow after work to further gauge my baby's performance.

Cheers,

Jay
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Old 29th January 2009, 21:48   #108
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My LB500 is running well. I am happy with it. I went for a twenty kilometre run on her and came back satisfied.

Meanwhile, I have a query. How exactly do I check the oil level? Currently I am using this method. First I unscrew the dipstick and wipe it dry. Then I dip the dipstick into the oil filler cavity till the dipstick rests on the cavity's opening. Please note that I don't screw in the dipstick. After a few seconds, I remove the dipstick and check the oil level. From what I have learnt, the oil level must be between the cross hatchings, preferably at the top of the cross hatchings.

Now, my query is whether I need to screw in the dipstick completely and check the oil level or whether I need to just rest the dipstick on the top of the oil filler hole and check the oil level. Which is the correct way to check oil level. Kindly advise. I have this doubt due to a confusing piece of text from the official Royal Enfield owners manual.
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Old 29th January 2009, 22:37   #109
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Must add in , JayPrashanth's penning in his experiences on his machine are making for a very interesting read , must I add only a Royal Enfielder can be so passionate about his motorbike.
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Old 31st January 2009, 13:13   #110
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Thanks Vikrut. Bullets are very addictive and I have my folks complaining that I'm spending too much time with my new baby.

Meanwhile, here is one more query for the seasoned Bulleteers. I am able to start my LB500 without using the choke lever for cold starts. If I kick correctly, she fires up without a protest even without me using the choke. So, my doubt is whether she is running rich(which I have no problem with) or is there any issue with the timing.

Meanwhile, the Pete Snidal manual says that the TCI equipped bullets adjust their ignition timing automatically based on the RPMs. If the timing has gone bad, it is probably because of some fault in the ignition module. So, I am thinking that the timing is OK.

This leaves me the air-fuel mixture which points to a rich mixture as she starts on the first kick even while cold starting. But apart from the jetting, the CV carb is a factory set item which seldom needs adjustments other than the idle setting. Also, if the carb is supplying a lean mixture, it may be due to some jetting malfunction or dirt in the carb. This is what I read from the Snidal manual. After a plug chop, the plug shows a darkish gray on the porcelain part and the side electrode has a marking from bottom to the apex. This marking seems to indicate a leaner mixture whereas the cold starting without choke is indicating a richer mixture. Is my bike running rich? My LB500 has finished 621 KMs as of now. Opinions and analysis please.

Cheers,

Jay
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Old 31st January 2009, 21:49   #111
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Meanwhile, today afternoon, I took off to a small hill called Nandi Hills on the outskirts of Bangalore. I rode at a steady sixty Ks all the way and I had some fun on the twisties. She felt pretty good but on the corners, I felt that grippier tyres would have made peg scraping easier. I had a couple of scary moments when I felt the rear tyre sliding. Downhill, I had more fun using the torque to my advantage. Overall, a splendid bullet day.

While riding on the highway with sparse traffic, I gave a good ear to the engine. She makes a ticking/clicking noise at particular rpms. This noise is evident especially when accelerating and decelerating in every gear. It does not sound like knocking/pinging. Usually I upshift by ear and engine feel. I shift to second at about 20Ks on the speedo. Third at 35-40. Fourth at 50 and top gear at 60Ks on the speedo. When I upshift, this clicking noise occurs at engine speeds just before upshifting. This happens in every gear. Also, the same noise occurs while downshifting. This has led me to think that the noise could be due to the pulse air valve working. This noise does not occur on a cold engine. On a warm engine it occurs when I have ridden for a few KMs and NOT as soon as I start the warm engine after a short butt break. I have read in a few forums that the pistons of many AVL 500LBs get loose. So, I am wondering whether this could be the case with her. The noise automatically goes away when I touch 68-70Ks on the speedo. I somehow have a feeling that this could be the PAV effect but I would like the veteran bulleteers' opinions on this.

Also, when I got home, I closely examined the engine like I do everyday and found a small bolt fallen behind the gearbox. This bolt doesn't look like one from the bullet as the LB500s bolts have a name CAPARO inscribed on them. I removed the bolt from the tough-to-reach spot. I also checked all other bolts and found them to be firmly fastened in their places. I will go for a leisurely 100-150 Km ride tomorrow as it is a Sunday. I hope that the noise made is because of the PAV and not anything serious. The speedo shows 753 clicks.
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Old 15th February 2009, 20:28   #112
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Ok guys. I have done 1919 KMs on the LB500(I call her Electra). Now, I covered the first 500 KMs pretty fast and after the first service the trouble of the ticking/clicking started. I took it back to the brand store workshop at around 880 Clicks on the odo. They took all of four days to rectify the issue. The issue being that the valve clearances were being affected due to defective valve nuts. The reason for delay: parts have to be ordered. Phew. They DID NOT give me any receipt for the warranty service claiming that they don't give such receipts. When I asked for the defective parts, they said that they have to send it back to the factory.

Now, I went for a 200KM round trip on Saturday to a place called Sira after Tumkur. The bike started making a strange TUK-TUK noise which sounds like a piston slap. This noise is apparent at particular engine speeds at 60Ks in fifth and corresponding revs at lower rpms and then gets drowned out by the valvetrain chatter as I accelerate. I spoke to Gurunandan earlier and he said that many LB500s have this issue(loose pistons). Now, I'm going to go back to the Brand Store workshop tomorrow to see what has to be done. I haven't taken the bike to more than 80 Ks on the speedo and I have followed the most careful running-in procedures. I bought the bike on 21st Jan this year and since then Electra has spent five days at the workshop. The ODO reads 1919 clicks as of this moment. Apart from this, the power also seems low after the valve-nut replacement and there is a slight oil stain near the head(don't know if it is a leakage or stains when the head was opened up)

Now, I checked the plug for any oil fouling. The plug id dry and it indicates an almost perfect mixture. I am wondering whether the piston slap would induce oil seepage into the combustion chamber. Also, upon revving the bike and checking the silencer, there appears to be no black/white smoke. The silencer also indicates minute soot deposits and it doesn't have any oily residue. The bike also seems to be average on power, nothing to talk about. It feels fairly smoother than before by not powerful or torquey.

Can anyone advise how to proceed. In case the engine has to be opened up again and the piston kit changed, Do I ask RE to replace the engine or do I ask for a replacement bike itself? Many others have faced such issues. I think that opening an engine so early in it's life clearly indicates a manufacturing defect. Please jump in with your views on this.

Check these links,

Royal Enfield 500 LB Machismo - why me? - India Travel Forum, BCMTouring.com

Royal Enfield Machismo 500 review - Page 7 - India Travel Forum, BCMTouring.com

Any pointers as to how to escalate this matter would be highly helpful. I am hoping that this issue is amicably and speedily resolved by the Brand store workshop. Please help.
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Old 16th February 2009, 09:28   #113
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AVL are noisy;I hope it is not a genuine engine problem.why not show your bike to a expert bullet mechanic in your city just to judge the problem(s)?

--
If it is confirmed that it is a engine seize ,call the madras factory number and give the purchase info.later ,ask the dealer to replace the Cylinder kit.no ,they won't replace the motorcycle.You should be firm with the replacement cylinder kit.ask them ,with such a bike after the warranty period ,Is it going to seize again?
dealer must change the cylinder-piston kit with brand new one in case of engine seizure.no workaround for that.afaik ,it costs around 7000 rupees when you buy.
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Old 16th February 2009, 09:43   #114
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Selling an Enfield to a customer is like premature delivery lol. The premature babies are kept in the incubator, your bike is in the incubator stage... lol Not to worry it will be allright, this is all normal stuff asociated with Enfield!
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Old 16th February 2009, 14:56   #115
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sankar View Post
Selling an Enfield to a customer is like premature delivery lol. The premature babies are kept in the incubator, your bike is in the incubator stage... lol Not to worry it will be allright, this is all normal stuff asociated with Enfield!
Dear Prashanth,
I fully agree with Sankar. We have all been through this.
In brand store, try to get in touch with Ravi, preferably on a weekday.
Stay there and get this fixed. If you are not happy with it, you could try to get in touch with Nandan (owns a private bullet garage) 9845771931 and maybe can get some advice from him.
But, PLEASE, do not get this opened up anywhere outside the authorized service centers and lose your warranty.
My experience, don't get too sensitive with this noise. It is quite common in LBs. If this noise is due to something else, then yes, please get this checked.
Cheers,
Deepak
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Old 16th February 2009, 17:17   #116
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Thanks for your replies guys.

I had gone to the workshop today but both Mr Ravi and the service manager Mr Sounder Rajan were on leave. A senior mechanic, One Mr Sundar rode the bike and he says it isn't from the piston. But the fact remains that he didn't hear the exact noise as he didn't ride my bike at 60-70 for a while, that's when the noise persists. He said that there is some cam noise and this will be rectified tomorrow. Also, he found the crash guard mount to be cracked. When I shouted at the guys there who sold me this crash guard claiming that it was of a superior quality, they offered to change it tomorrow. I guess that's acceptable atleast. Also, the mechanic told me it is ok to ride the bull for now. I'l be going back tomorrow and meet Mr Ravi and Mr Sounder Rajan. Nandan was unavailable on Sunday. So, I couldn't show him my bike. And yeah, I won't let anyone touch the bike except the authorised service guys.

Meanwhile, if it is some issue with the piston, I will press for the new cylinder kit and this time, I will take a receipt from them. Let's see how it pans out tomorrow. Once again, thanks for chipping in guys. Just hope that it gets sorted out.
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Old 19th February 2009, 19:23   #117
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Turned out that the Pulse Air Valve had conked out. Amazingly, the RE brand store workshop had a replacement PAV. Put it on and returned after a paid service. The cams had some backlash. So, got that adjusted and replaced oil at 2000 KMs, again unscheduled service. Also the speedo cable was broken which was replaced. Meanwhile, when I told them to disconnect the entire PAV shebang by fitting a blanking plug/nut on the head, they said that it would void warranty. So, I let the PAV be. Now the bike is running smooth and nice and I am happy. Also the crash guard was replaced under it's manufacturers' warranty which incidentally is three months.

Also, I spoke to the sales manager and asked him about when the UCE500 would be launched. He told me that the factory is contemplating a release in early 2010. Also, he expects the price to be pegged at the 1.5 lakh mark. Sounds very attractive. Also, he had ridden the new UCE500 at the factory and he said that the bike pulls much better than the LB500. At the moment however, this is unofficial news.
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Old 20th February 2009, 13:29   #118
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JayPrashanth View Post
Turned out that the Pulse Air Valve had conked out. Amazingly, the RE brand store workshop had a replacement PAV. Put it on and returned after a paid service. The cams had some backlash. So, got that adjusted and replaced oil at 2000 KMs, again unscheduled service. Also the speedo cable was broken which was replaced. Meanwhile, when I told them to disconnect the entire PAV shebang by fitting a blanking plug/nut on the head, they said that it would void warranty. So, I let the PAV be. Now the bike is running smooth and nice and I am happy. Also the crash guard was replaced under it's manufacturers' warranty which incidentally is three months.

Also, I spoke to the sales manager and asked him about when the UCE500 would be launched. He told me that the factory is contemplating a release in early 2010. Also, he expects the price to be pegged at the 1.5 lakh mark. Sounds very attractive. Also, he had ridden the new UCE500 at the factory and he said that the bike pulls much better than the LB500. At the moment however, this is unofficial news.
Dear Prashanth,
Nice to hear that your Bullet is doing fine.
Cheers,
Deepak
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Old 20th February 2009, 19:06   #119
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Thank you Deepak. I am enjoying my LB500 now. I hope this continues.
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Old 22nd February 2009, 13:19   #120
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I had gone for a longish ride on my LB500 on Saturday, upto Ambur on the Bangalore-Chennai highway. The bike performed very well and I was happy. I rode at a constant speedo indicated 90 which felt like a genuine 80. The bike was trundling along very nicely. The real revelation was how comfortable I felt after doing more than 300+ Ks in about 5 hours. I am certain that most other motorcyles except the Unicorn and Zma would have left me exhausted. Long live the bullet.

Meanwhile, today morning I took her out for a short spin and then I checked oil levels and found the clutch oil to be only about 3cm on a long screwdriver while the Pete Snidal manual recommends 5cm. When I loosened the central holding nut behind the gear lever, oil did flow out but I made sure that the oil level was upto the 5 cm recommended level. And this happens just three days after the Brand Store mechs changed all the required oils. Sad scene, this. Yes, the oil was new but they had just filled in half the required level. Even the engine oil was filled upto the full mark only when I personally checked it and asked the mechanic to fill it up. I didn't check the clutch and gearbox oil then. And, the Brand Store happens to be the run by the RE factory itself, phew. The moral of the story, please ensure that the oil is changed in front of you.

Anoher observation I made after yesterday's ride was that the bike was leaking a few drops of oil through the tappet adjustment cover and the cavity through which the decomp wire meets the tappet cover. At high speeds, droplets of this oil was being thrown onto the left hand toolbox. Reason: tappet cover was slightly on the looser side. I have tightened the cover and now the oil stays where it is meant to stay. The flip side to this is that the decomp lever feels a little tighter than before. A smaller price to pay than oil being leaked out. She had managed to burn up 12.49 litres of petrol for 420 Ks. The average fuel effciency comes up to 33.6 KMPL. The 420 Kilometres included 35% stop-go conditions in the city and 65% highway riding at constant speeds of 90 Ks on the speedo. The odo now reads 2520 KMs.
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