Partzilla Live Q&A with John Talley – October 08, 2021
Another edition of Partzilla Live Q&A is in the books, with John Talley answering your motorcycle and ATV repair questions every Friday afternoon.
Partzilla Live Q&A Highlights – Honda ATV & Polaris ATV
What would make the oil in my 2008 Honda Foreman 500 smell like gas?
John Talley: Typically when a unit smells washed down with fuel, especially if it’s been sitting, that tells me that the float level or the float seat is not doing its job and it’s letting the carburetor fill up too much and guess what? It’s just flowing right into your engine. Eventually it’s going to hydrolock it, so I’d say look at that first.
I’m thinking of doing a big bore kit on my Honda TRX 400 and bore it out to 440. What's your professional standpoint on boring out stock motors?
John Talley: It depends on the motor. I’ve mentioned before that we have a 400 EX in the corral next door that I think we’re going to go all out on. One of the first videos I did five or six years ago now, we did just a stock top end rebuild on a 400 EX and we’re going to pump this one up a bit with some aftermarket stuff. And the number I had in my mind was taking it out to a 440. But what it boils down to is the thickness of the cylinder that you’re working with. You take it out too thin and you run the risk of warping or cracking the cylinder. And especially if you’re going to go with higher compression, you have to take into account the gasket surface on the head and how much you’ll have if you bore it. … But if yours is the 400 EX, I feel comfortable going to a 440 and that’s what I plan to do on our build when we get to it.
Are Polaris Expedition 425s good ATVs or should I get a Honda Rancher 420?
John Talley: Alright, you’re going to put me on the spot, aren’t you? But for my money, it would be the Honda Rancher 420 all day long. It’s impossible to beat that machine, that’s all there is to it. Sorry Polaris, it’s just the way I feel about it.
I had to replace the front and rear master cylinders on a Polaris Sportsman, as well as pads all around. When bleeding the brakes, do I start with the front brakes first or the rear brakes?
John Talley: Whichever caliper you’re dealing with, I typically go with whichever one is furthest away from the master cylinder and work my way back. Now on that particular model I do believe you have a common system just on the hand brake, or maybe it’s the foot brake, where it’ll actually engage both the front and the rear. In that case, pick out which one’s furthest away and I would think that’s going to be the front. Start with it and then go to the back.
Want to see more live repair questions answered? See all of Partzilla’s Live Q&A sessions here.