a day of discovery…

as the MV is now road legal. So I’ve been out riding to find out what is good… and not so good.

First the good. It’s amazingly fast, extremely comfortable with fantastic brakes. At least compared to my Cyclemaster! It also generates quite a bit of interest  – probably because it’s red and Italian, a bit like a Ferrari to the 4 wheel petrolheads.


But there are some less good aspects. First, it’s smoking a little but I’m hoping that’s because the motor is running in, after the new piston was fitted (eternal optimist at large). And the fueling is very poor. It won’t idle and seems to be running rich. It hesitates at full throttle and then picks up as the throttle is rolled back.

So it’s another carb strip to check the idle jet and pilot circuit. Everything looks fine apart from the pilot jet is very small at No.35. Such a small pilot jet is most often used on smaller engines around 125cc and research saws the early version of this engine was fitted with a No.45 jet. As luck would have it, the spare carb bought with the MV has a No.40 jet, so it’s worth a try. Good news, it now idles OK but still won’t rev out correctly, regardless of slide needle position.

A quick bit of research on the excellent Dellorto website uncovered the original carburettor settings and for some strange reason both the main jet and throttle needle are the wrong parts. The main jet should be 102 and a 109 is fitted; the needle should be E12 and an E10 is fitted. The E10 needle is much smaller at the pointed end and this is the cause of the rich mixture at large throttle openings – problem solved.

But not quite.

The engine now pulls and revs much better but the extra torque is making the clutch slip….

and the battery is not charging……

and the petrol taps drip…….

and the speedo reads wrong…….

and the sump plate is leaking a little oil……

and the cam box cover is leaking a little……

and finally (for now) there’s the cam shaft oil feed mod I want to do. The standard method is to drip oil onto the camshaft from a tube mounted above it but this isn’t very effective as the spinning cam shaft just throws the oil away, leading to premature camshaft wear and failure.


The better method is to feed the oil through the camshaft (like all modern OHC engines) and this is the mod I want to do – WHEN I FIGURE OUT HOW.






and now I’ve got a Yamaha…


not a ’98 R1 in red (that I’d like), or an RD400 in blue (that I’d like) or even a 50cc FS1-E in yellow (that I’d like) but a GUITAR… as I’d also like the challenge of learning to play… but not to sing as I can’t.

So I’ve got the kit and I’ve had a try at a few chords – E and A to be exact but it hasn’t gone very well.  “Andy the Guitar Man” said he could teach me to play in 2 weeks but I’m in week four and still  a long way from playing.

When I was a child my gran had a nifty egg slicer that worked a treat but you don’t see them very often now. Other than the egg slicer in the form of a Yamaha guitar and it’s been pretty effective at slicing 3 fingers on my left hand. I just need some cucumber and white bread and we could could have afternoon tea and sandwiches. But don’t ask me to butter the bread or serve them as it would be very difficult with only one hand.

When the blisters heal and I kill all the nerve ends in my fingers, I’d like to play “Lucky Man” by The Verve, or “Cracklin’ Rosie” by Neil Diamond, or the intro the “Maggie May” by Rod Steward, or maybe some Simon and Garfunkel, or even “American Pie” – short version obviously!

Until then, I’ll just have to keep working on the egg slicer..


and maybe one day I’ll get a tune out of it.