Not too far back, I wrote a post about how to safely remove motorcycle cylinders. Today’s post covers the easy steps for reinstalling motorcycle cylinders.
Reinstalling motorcycle cylinders is not rocket science, but there are a few steps one can take to make his or her life easier. Having two sets of hands helps, but is not required. I reinstalled the cylinders on “Cal” a couple weekends ago, and I was able to get it done all by my lonesome.
Reinstalling Motorcycle Cylinders
Step 1: Make sure the piston is close to bottom dead center. It doesn’t have to be at the lowest part of its travel, but it should be close. The key here is you want to be able to slide the cylinder over the piston and rings carefully. Obviously, I hope you have already gone through the steps of measuring piston clearance, installing new rings or measuring piston ring end gap, and honing the cylinders before reinstall.
Step 2: Get yourself a hose clamp that is wide enough to cover all rings and has a big enough circumference to go around the entire piston.
Step 3: Install the hose clamp around your piston rings, compressing them slightly. The key here is that the hose clamp SHOULD NOT be tight. You aren’t trying to compress the heck out of the rings, but rather compress them to the point that their outer diameter equals the inner diameter of the piston. If you push down or up on the hose clamp, it should slide down or up relatively easily.
Step 4: Get a spray bottle of engine oil and lube up the inside of those cylinders.
Step 5: Begin to slide the cylinder down over the top of the piston. Again the outside diameter of the rings should equal the inside diameter of the cylinder.
Step 6: Continue to slide the cylinder down over the piston, such that the bottom of the cylinder pushes the hose clamp out of the way leaving the rings to re-expand inside the cylinder. Another way to thing about it is that you are creating a little tunnel for the rings to travel from the hose clamp into the cylinder.
Step 7: Completely undo the hose clamp and remove it from around the connecting rod.
Step 8: Slide the cylinder all the way down and you are done!
Final piece of advice. The hose clamps you buy can be the simple screwdriver kind found at any hardware store. I have seen quick release ones with a twisty knob instead of the screwdriver mechanism at some hardware stores. These might be easier to manage if working alone. Honestly, I had no problem with the traditional hose clamps and they are super cheap at Home Depot.
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