Content © 2012-2017 by American IronHorse Owners Organization.  Use of AIH Logo Licensed by American Ironhorse, LLC
Changing the Oil Our steeds are very dear to us.  Wives and children can be replaced but that perfect motorcycle is a treasure to be cherished and protected.  As such, not just anybody gets to work on my bike.  Even if Jesse James were to show up on my doorstep wanting to give my chopper a tune up he would be regarded with the highest suspicion.  So, like many of us, I prefer to do as much of my own work as possible.  That is the only way I can be sure that the individual looking after my ride has the purest motives and will work to the utmost of his ability to make sure my machine remains within peak operating and safety standards.  One of the things I do myself is change the oil.  I found that shop manuals leave out many tips and tricks we might find useful in doing our own maintenance.  This is a guide to changing your own oil in the garage using nothing but hand tools and your God-given talent as a certified shade-tree mechanic. 1) Buy materials.  Use the finest filter and oil you can find.  More expensive is better.  If your choice is between a DUD5 and a Super HuffNBlow 5000X, then go for the latter. 2) Buy one extra quart of oil for topping off and to replace what you are about to spill all over the floor.  Get rags.  Get a lot of rags. 3) Choose your time to do the deed carefully.  Changing the oil shouldn’t take more than an hour, so set aside at least a day, preferably not a Sunday.  That way, you can still run to the store to get all the crap you didn’t know you were going to need. 4) Run the bike beforehand since hot oil drains much more easily.  Hot oil also ensures that you will have sufficient scarring to attest to your mechanical machismo. 5) Find the drain plug.  For efficiency, begin with the last place you think it could possibly be and work your way to places that would make more sense.  Allow one hour and then go to Google to find out where the hell the designers put it. 6) Google indicated an obscure little plug somewhere on the bottom so now you need a floor jack to lift the bike so you may get to it.  Return to the auto parts store to get one. 7) Discover that the jack won’t fit under the bike.  Now you have to jack up the bike to get the jack under it.  The easy way is to call some neighbors and have them help lift the bike onto the jack.  That is somewhat embarrassing and you lose the bragging rights of having done it “all by myself.”  Another option is to build short little ramps out of 2X6’s, drive the bike onto them and then scoot the jack over with your foot while holding it up.  Yeah, that’s what we’ll do… 8) Lose your balance, drop the bike and start cursing.  Make a list of all the parts you just broke. 9) Once the bike is in the air you can now drain the oil.  Note that there is no way to get a drain pan under the bike with the jack in the way.  Use scrap wood and tinfoil to build a miniature aqueduct from the drain hole to the container. 10) Remove the drain plug and accidentally fumble it into the drain pan.  By now the oil is stone cold again and comes out like molasses.  Fine.  Go watch Youtube videos while it oozes into the container. 11) Return to discover that your aqueduct has collapsed, leaving a black pool of goop reminiscent of the Exxon Valdez right in the middle of your garage.  More cursing. 12) After cleaning up the mess it is now time to remove the oil filter.  Many filter wrenches and other custom devices may be purchased to accomplish this, none of which work.  Your best bet is a wood chisel, screwdriver, hammer and channel locks.  While prizing off the oil filter you discover that the bike has been specifically designed to create as much of a mess as possible in the event that the owner should choose to change his own oil.  This is evidenced by the new, albeit smaller oil spill on the floor.  By now you also have ruined clothes, oil in your hair and are bleeding profusely from at least three grievous wounds. 13) Clean up the mess and install the new filter.  Wrong filter – back to the store. Repeat as necessary. 14) Proceed to the drain pan and fish out the plug.  Which has somehow disappeared.  Search the entire garage on hands and knees.  Return to the store again and buy another one.  Use the wife’s car because by now you are too trashed to risk messing up your own.  The clerks know you well enough now to call you by name instead of just “Sir.” Upon your return, note that the old plug has reappeared in the drain pan, bigger n’ shit. 15) Refill the oil tank with new oil.  Never use a funnel.  Instead, make sure you spill plenty into the internal works of your bike and onto the floor.  This helps to keep everything waterproof. 16) After cleaning up your 3 rd  oil spill of the day it’s time to get the bike off the lift.  After dropping the bike and three oil spills, you are out of pride and mechanical machismo so now it is perfectly acceptable to get the neighbors to help.  You should give them beer, unless they can’t keep their smart-ass comments about your appearance and all the oil on the floor to themselves.  In that case, a polite “thank you” expressed through gritted teeth will do nicely. 17) Test drive the bike.  Success!  Now that you stink and are covered in dirty oil and blood, it’s time to go give the little woman a big hug.
August 26, 2014
Want to contact Fat Max? email Fat Max ...
ORGANIZATION ORGANIZATION OWNERS OWNERS For All American Ironhorse Motorcycle Owners
Fat Max
© 2012-2017   American IronHorse Owners Organization Use of AIH Logo Licensed by American Ironhorse, LLC 
Changing the Oil Our steeds are very dear to us.  Wives and children can be replaced but that perfect motorcycle is a treasure to be cherished and protected.  As such, not just anybody gets to work on my bike.  Even if Jesse James were to show up on my doorstep wanting to give my chopper a tune up he would be regarded with the highest suspicion.  So, like many of us, I prefer to do as much of my own work as possible.  That is the only way I can be sure that the individual looking after my ride has the purest motives and will work to the utmost of his ability to make sure my machine remains within peak operating and safety standards.  One of the things I do myself is change the oil.  I found that shop manuals leave out many tips and tricks we might find useful in doing our own maintenance.  This is a guide to changing your own oil in the garage using nothing but hand tools and your God-given talent as a certified shade-tree mechanic. 1) Buy materials.  Use the finest filter and oil you can find.  More expensive is better.  If your choice is between a DUD5 and a Super HuffNBlow 5000X, then go for the latter. 2) Buy one extra quart of oil for topping off and to replace what you are about to spill all over the floor.  Get rags.  Get a lot of rags. 3) Choose your time to do the deed carefully.  Changing the oil shouldn’t take more than an hour, so set aside at least a day, preferably not a Sunday.  That way, you can still run to the store to get all the crap you didn’t know you were going to need. 4) Run the bike beforehand since hot oil drains much more easily.  Hot oil also ensures that you will have sufficient scarring to attest to your mechanical machismo. 5) Find the drain plug.  For efficiency, begin with the last place you think it could possibly be and work your way to places that would make more sense.  Allow one hour and then go to Google to find out where the hell the designers put it. 6) Google indicated an obscure little plug somewhere on the bottom so now you need a floor jack to lift the bike so you may get to it.  Return to the auto parts store to get one. 7) Discover that the jack won’t fit under the bike.  Now you have to jack up the bike to get the jack under it.  The easy way is to call some neighbors and have them help lift the bike onto the jack.  That is somewhat embarrassing and you lose the bragging rights of having done it “all by myself.”  Another option is to build short little ramps out of 2X6’s, drive the bike onto them and then scoot the jack over with your foot while holding it up.  Yeah, that’s what we’ll do… 8) Lose your balance, drop the bike and start cursing.  Make a list of all the parts you just broke. 9) Once the bike is in the air you can now drain the oil.  Note that there is no way to get a drain pan under the bike with the jack in the way.  Use scrap wood and tinfoil to build a miniature aqueduct from the drain hole to the container. 10) Remove the drain plug and accidentally fumble it into the drain pan.  By now the oil is stone cold again and comes out like molasses.  Fine.  Go watch Youtube videos while it oozes into the container. 11) Return to discover that your aqueduct has collapsed, leaving a black pool of goop reminiscent of the Exxon Valdez right in the middle of your garage.  More cursing. 12) After cleaning up the mess it is now time to remove the oil filter.  Many filter wrenches and other custom devices may be purchased to accomplish this, none of which work.  Your best bet is a wood chisel, screwdriver, hammer and channel locks.  While prizing off the oil filter you discover that the bike has been specifically designed to create as much of a mess as possible in the event that the owner should choose to change his own oil.  This is evidenced by the new, albeit smaller oil spill on the floor.  By now you also have ruined clothes, oil in your hair and are bleeding profusely from at least three grievous wounds. 13) Clean up the mess and install the new filter.  Wrong filter – back to the store. Repeat as necessary. 14) Proceed to the drain pan and fish out the plug.  Which has somehow disappeared.  Search the entire garage on hands and knees.  Return to the store again and buy another one.  Use the wife’s car because by now you are too trashed to risk messing up your own.  The clerks know you well enough now to call you by name instead of just “Sir.” Upon your return, note that the old plug has reappeared in the drain pan, bigger n’ shit. 15) Refill the oil tank with new oil.  Never use a funnel.  Instead, make sure you spill plenty into the internal works of your bike and onto the floor.  This helps to keep everything waterproof. 16) After cleaning up your 3 rd  oil spill of the day it’s time to get the bike off the lift.  After dropping the bike and three oil spills, you are out of pride and mechanical machismo so now it is perfectly acceptable to get the neighbors to help.  You should give them beer, unless they can’t keep their smart-ass comments about your appearance and all the oil on the floor to themselves.  In that case, a polite “thank you” expressed through gritted teeth will do nicely. 17) Test drive the bike.  Success!  Now that you stink and are covered in dirty oil and blood, it’s time to go give the little woman a big hug.
August 26, 2014
Want to contact Fat Max? email Fat Max ...
ORGANIZATION ORGANIZATION OWNERS OWNERS
Fat Max