Partzilla Live Q&A with John Talley – June 25, 2021

Another Friday edition of Partzilla Live Q&A is in the books, with John Talley answering your live motorcycle and ATV repair questions.

Honda ATV repair ruled the conversation again, with the ever-popular TRX400 coming up many times during this session. Check out some excerpts from Partzilla’s latest live Q&A session below, and tune into our YouTube and Facebook channels every Friday at 3pm Eastern for the next edition. 

Partzilla Live Q&A with John Talley 06-25-21

Honda ATV Brake Repair

I have replaced the front brake pads, wheel cylinders and master brake cylinder on my 2004 Honda Rancher, bled the brakes and refilled the lines with fresh brake fluid, but I can’t get the brake lever to build up any resistance. Any ideas?

John Talley: Alright, it sounds to me like it’s not even pulling the fluid down. … I’ve run into this in the past, I can’t remember the machine because it’s been several years, but I filled up the reservoir trying to bleed it and it wouldn’t do anything. It wouldn’t draw the brake fluid in, until I put the cap on for the reservoir. Now what difference did that make? Apparently a lot to this particular machine. … So that may be what you’re running into. Put your cap on or screw it on or twist it on and then see what it does. … Put on that top plate. I think it has a rubber diaphragm on the inside of it. Put that on there and see what it does. Now, if you’re still not having any luck, you may want to go ahead and invest in a vacuum bleeder. That’s one of my favorite tools. It makes life really easy. You just open up the bleeder valve down low, attach the vacuum to it and you can either get a manual one or one that you can hook up to an air source and create a vacuum and it’ll pull the fluid down through there. …

Honda ATV Starting/Charging Problems

I have an 04 Honda 400EX that I ride all the time. Last week it started up and I was letting it idle but it cut off. I tried to turn it back on and it made a click and lost all power. Nothing happens when I jump solenoids and I can only bump start it. Is the issue the ground, and where is the ground cable located? 

John Talley: Alright, there is one ground of course going from the negative side of the battery to the frame. And the engine is actually grounded through the frame and I don’t think there’s a strap anywhere else on it, but what you’re describing to me is a battery that has just completely let go. So one of the first things you need to look at is the battery voltage itself. So you need to acquire a multimeter and take a measurement because I’m betting you’ve probably got a failed cell in the battery or more than one cell. And it’s knocked that battery out. Or it could be the fact that you’ve run it and then it ran the battery all the way down because there could be an issue with your charging system. I know we’ve done a video that goes through the process of testing that. So check your battery and make sure it’s where it’s supposed to be and maybe charge the battery if it’s low, but if it won’t keep the charge, then go ahead and replace it. At that point when you get it to restart, you need to do a voltage test with it running, without idling you should be in the neighborhood of 14 volts. The static test is usually going to be about 12.5 for a healthy battery. …

Honda ATV Broken Bolt

I broke the oil bolt on my 2008 TRX400. Any advice on how to take it out?

John Talley: Alright, well it depends on how you broke it. I mean, did you actually over-tighten it to the point it snapped? Or were you trying to remove it and it snapped? Either way, good grief it sounds like those threads are galled in there and probably the only way you’re going to pull this off is you can try using one of those drills where you drill into it and you have almost like a reverse tap where it tries to work it out. You use that in a case where there’s not a lot of torque involved in trying to remove it. Now what you might have to do is get a steel nut that is a little bit bigger than the threads themselves … lay it on the side and then use a welder to weld on the inside of that nut to grab those threads and then back it out. If all of that still doesn’t work, well you just may have to drill it out completely and then re-thread it, and I believe it’s Time Sert that makes a couple of different old thread repair kits for the correct diameter and thread pitch and more specifically, the correct length depending on the application. So that may be where you’re heading, because I’m sure you don’t want to have to replace your engine cases just for that. 

Want to see more live repair questions answered? See all of Partzilla’s Live Q&A sessions here.  



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