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How not to fit brake shoes and how to tune carbs... BMW

The rear brake on the bike has been bugging me. No matter how much I adjusted it I could not get it to grab and well brake. So this morning at 7am I took the back wheel off and see of the brake shoes needed replacing. I was shocked by what I found. See photo below. As you will see one of the shoes had slipped off the pin. The parts of the shoes that are opened by the brake cam are not even make proper contact with the cam. No wonder they were not grabbing. I did some research on the net and found that what was fitted was a set of shoes for an earlier model R100.

I had to get the right brake shoes. I spent some hours trying to get the brake cam to open the shoes enough. But nothing I did made this happen. Thinking I had the shoes back in that I could ride the bike I rode ½ kilometre and heard this horrible grinding noise from the back wheel. Turned around and went home. I had fitted the tension springs the wrong way around and they were rubbing on the wheel which made the horrible grinding noise. Fixed this and re-fitted the back wheel again.

I went to Motohansa at Rydalmere to get the correct shoes. They of course had them. So off home I go and again not that far from home the back wheel is making some really bad screeching noises. When I took the rear wheel off again one of the shoes had slipped off the pin again.

I fitted the correct shoes and what a difference. I now have a back brake. I assume the previous owner didn’t know he/she had the wrong shoes fitted. All I can do is shake my head at this and am glad I did take the back wheel off this morning.

On a better not Rockster from BIKEME forums had invited me over to his place today so we could tune the carbs. I had ordered a bigger set of jets for the bike during the week from Munich Motorcycles in Western Australia. I like to spread the spending love around.

Rockster showed me how to tune the carbs by ear and also how to change the idle. He got it right first go too. Well done mate. I took it for a ride and noticed that the pickup through all gears was better. The engine was revving a lot more freely too. He and his son then took the bike for a ride and all I could hear around his suburb was this booming BMW.

After watching a DVD of his bikes we changed the main jet from 135 to 145. This improved the response of the engine even further. Bottom end was a bit hesitant before these changes. Not any more. It feels like a different bike. It had been some years since Rockster had tuned the carbs on an Airhead. He has not lost his touch I would say. I can now let the engine go down to idle in second gear and crawl along and then crack open the throttle and it takes off like a rocket. Well as an old airhead should do anyway. Thanks heaps mate for all your help today. I owe you a beer big time.


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