Step 2: Dis-assebmly and Inspection

Let’s do a small recap here on this project. First and foremost I will not be restoring a ragged out dirt bike that I found on Craig’s List to bring back to its glory. My bike is in pretty good shape and has given me several years of trouble free use. So with this project I will be upgrading the performance and style while making the bike more off-road race ready, instead of the weekend moto track queen that it has been. To achieve this the bike will get general maintenance performed while replacing those worn out parts with O.E.M or aftermarket performance parts, so together we can tackle any single track that Georgia has to offer and come out swinging on race day to grab a top podium finish. Simply the goal is to compete in my very first off-road race event with a race bike that I have built for competition.

Before I can start this bike build I will need to completely disassemble my trusted bike for inspection and cleaning right? A clean bike is a whole lot easier to work on and ensures dirt doesn’t find its way into other parts of the bike or engine.

With pressure washers being a popular choice for cleaning dirt bikes, I’m no different than anybody else but I try to use mine only a few times a year as they tend to increase a bikes maintenance. When disassembling any bike for major service work it is almost a must to pressure wash the chassis, engine, suspension, drive system, and hub/wheels. As you can see in the pictures to gain access to most of these area’s I had to remove the gas tank, all plastic body parts, and even went a step further by removing the sub frame and exhaust while being careful not to introduce water to the engine. This engine had a new Wiseco bottom end crank kit installed last year, the engine will stay inside the chassis as other area’s of the bike get the much needed attention.

Now that the bike is clean and accessible I will take a closer look at worn or damaged parts while taking notes on what needs to be replaced or serviced. This bike has been through this kind of process a few times during its life, so I don’t expect any major issues. With limited shop space keeping all the fasteners, bolts, washers, and small parts in large freezer bags is a prefect way to store the parts, plus keep them all together. Using a Sharpie to help identify the bags full of parts will help during the re-assembly process. Nothing is worse or more frustrating than losing those small but important parts.

Definitely once you start peeling back the layers and digging deeper into the dis-assembly process issues start to pop up that you normally couldn’t see or just over looked during the riding season. Just with any used dirt bike they can look pretty sitting on the bike stand but hide issues so well. You know what I’m talking about, if you have ever bought a used dirt bike. “Seller says everything has been serviced, never raced, runs great,” You get home and after a few rides and better inspection you notice the lack of care and service the bike has received. Therefore, the end result is more money out of your pocket right?

Embarrassment is the only thing that came to mind once I started discovering some of these issues with the bike. Yes, the bike is 7 years old but I took a great deal of pride in servicing the bike to ensure my bike was always ride ready any given time.

Noted Issues Found

  • Some fasteners threads were rusted and corroded from moisture
  • Missing bolts
  • Chain slide/guide and rollers are worn
  • Both left and right side fork seals are leaking
  • Steering stem bearings are just flat shot and worn out
  • Power valve actuator arm cover leaking black gooey stuff down the engine cases
  • Radiators have side impact damage
  • Suspension linkage and swing arm bearings dry with a small sign of moisture
  • The grommet seal between silencer and exhaust pipe has been making a gooey mess
  • Binding clutch cable
  • Air filter oil collecting in carb throat
  • Normal wear and tear on body parts, engine cases, wheels, and chassis parts, etc
  • Mud/Dirt in all non accessible places
  • Top end needing serviced

Some of the task I will be performing include the top end replacement, all chassis bearings will be replaced, clutch basket and pressure plate with clutch kit, controls, brake lines, break pads, handlebars, oversize tank, suspension, and plenty of other off road accessories that will turn her into an open beginner class champion. Once this project is completed this 2005 Yamaha YZ250 will be pretty fresh in looks and performance,  enough to get me through the roughest single track in the southeast while kicking off my racing plans.

Stay tuned as the next articles will be featuring the new replacement parts or service items as I outline the products, features, and the functions they will add to this off-road warrior.

Project YZ250 Dis-assembly

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