58 Tiger Cub Motorcycle

FRS 106, Michael Littman – Spring 2017

February 14th, 2017 (Day 3)


  • Reflections and learnings from the previous shop class
  • Choose groups
  • Discussion of Readings
  • Continue disassembly in shop in sub-teams

Reflections and learnings from the previous shop class

  • The process of removing the tyre from the rim (the machine used to do it, how the steel wires are pushed against the rim, removing the stem to deflate the tire, act of “breaking the bead”, using soap water as a lubricant
  • The spokes on the wheel can be tightened or loosened to adjust the gap between the rim and table top (when rim is lying flat on a table), listening to the “sound of the spokes” to judge whether they are the same and appropriate tightness.
  • Problem Solving (the troubles of working with something old- parts may be rusted together, choosing the right tools to disassemble)
  • Importance of the manual (to identify and sort parts, get more familiar with the names of the parts, need to know whether it is right handed or left handed thread)

Groups- Refer to groups tab

Discussion of Chapters 1 and 2 of Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

Motorcycle References:

  • Testing temperature of the engine by hand (exhaust pipe of engine is the hottest part)
  • Reserve Fuel Tank (discussion on redundancy)
  • What does it mean to burn a plug? The high voltage in a spark plug causes the grounded part to burn out, increasing the gap for the spark to cover, resulting in a spark not forming. More common is for a plug to get ‘fouled’- covered with carbon
  • Points- Contacts that open and close that trigger the plug to generate a spark
  • Engine Seizing- Piston (aluminum) and barrel (cast iron) have different coefficients of thermal expansions. Problem arises when the piston gets hotter than the barrel and could fuse with it.
  • Choke- Restricts air flow to the engine. On a cold day, it must be choked fully to ensure that cold air does not enter and the temperature is not high enough for a spark.
  • Tappets


  • Chatauqua- can be interpreted as a modern TED talk
  • Question of what’s the best way to lead your life and the pros and cons of technology
  • Message in the second chapter- take your time.

Shop Time

  • Broke into sub-teams, and worked on more intricate disassembly of particular parts. (e.g. getting the parts of the clutch separated from the engine, starting to take apart the engine, removing the spokes from the front tire)