Stella 2T highway/performance upgrades
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Molto Verboso
Joined: 26 Oct 2015
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Thu Aug 01, 2019 4:40 pm quote
I though that just about every largeframe small block engine (except for the T5) uses the short reach "HS" plug, instead of the long "ES" plug? I would also think that you'd want at least a B8 plug with any cylinder kit as well?
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Thu Aug 01, 2019 5:30 pm quote
wdc is right. I think LML 150ís might use a long reach plug. But you should be running an HS plug with that Malossi kit.

Not sure what issues running a too long plug causes ... probably buildup on the exposed threads, or worst case, tip could be hitting the piston.
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Thu Aug 01, 2019 5:53 pm quote
Interesting. Tip not hitting as far as I can tell. Yes the Stella takes es plugs which is why I kept with the es. The Malossi instructions sayDenso W27 ES-ZU. Will need to check if it's equivalent is es or ha. Not at computer right now.

I was at b8 but went to b7 because my timing is so low at 12 degrees trying to bring wot temps down that it needed a hotter plug.

I will revisit plug once I get some time at computer to research this specific denso plug
Molto Verboso
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Thu Aug 01, 2019 6:57 pm quote
Well that's some development we didn't notice. Well done WDC and Socalguy. Thats a Vespa kit. Will be an HS plug. The extra 6mm will be making the timing feel advanced like a centre squish head does.
Almost everything I do is long reach, never even occurred to me.

When you get an HS plug in there the main jet WOT testing will need to start again from rich and spluttery, 110+
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Thu Aug 01, 2019 8:35 pm quote
Wow. Thanks guys.. whodatschrome, SoCalGuy and Jack221 what a group effort! I really appreciate the constant hand holding through this and passing on your knowledge to another person. Hopefully I'll be doing the same to someone else down the line!

This kinda blows my mind that something simple like long reach vs short reach plug can really F with your engine. Thankfully my squish is so large that I do not think plug was hitting piston. I guess it makes sense that if more of the plug is exposed to the combustion then it will absorb more of the heat and get the head cylinder and sensor hotter. I should have some time tomorrow to try to grab the correct HS plug and run a quick test before I head out on Saturday. If this improves the temps and ignition timing then I will enjoy my vacation so much more because I won't be obsessing over this for a week!
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Thu Aug 01, 2019 9:24 pm quote
Quote:
The worst and most immediate problem created by an overly-long plug in an engine is that the exposed threads absorb a terrific amount of heat from the combustion process. This raises the plug-nose temperatures, and may take them up high enough to make the side electrode function as a glow plug. And when that happens you have the white-hot electrode firing the mixture far too early, like an over-advanced spark timing but worse because the early ignition causes yet higher combustion chamber temperatures, which causes even earlier ignition. This condition is known as "runaway pre-ignition," and if it is allowed to proceed it will wreck your engine.

Even a single plug thread exposed in an engine's combustion chamber will raise electrode temperatures quite markedly. That could be a real problem as engine makers don't hold plug-hole depths to close tolerances, and the near-universal adoption of crushable plug washers gives the user a chance to compound errors by over-tightening when installing fresh plugs. Spark plug manufacturers have solved the problem by leaving an unthreaded relief at plugs' lower ends. The relief also serves as a pilot, guiding a plug straight into the plug hole. Finally, the relief accommodates differences in opinion between plug makers about how nominal reach dimensions should translate into actual metal - and there are some small differences.
Jennings on plug length...

Nicely done u guys!
Woulda been a crime to go on vacation with that hanging over Swiss like a cloud!
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Fri Aug 02, 2019 8:31 am quote
Major problem
I ran 12 miles out on highway with new HS plug and jetting/timing then pulled over to make adjustments cause it was still hot but close. After messing with Jetting and ready to take off again the bike wouldn't roll off stand in neutral and made some horrible sounds like it was pushing up against something. I put it in gear and tried to creep forward and it wouldn't roll. So now I'm stuck waiting for a friend.

Looking for advice on what it could be. My theory is clutch gave out. But that would imply it wouldn't be in neutral right? Rear wheel spins when bike not running only when I lift the back end off the ground and rotate by hand. In idle engine revs fine sounds great. Rear wheel locked up though with any attempt to roll it while bike is on.

And I was so close to finally getting the jetting right! Just glad clutch didn't die at speed on highway.


Edit: 75 min wait for my first tow with the Stella. Ha. Requested flatbed. Let's see how long this actually takes.

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Refusing to budge like a stubborn old dog when you pull on it's collar.

Molto Verboso
Joined: 26 Oct 2015
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Fri Aug 02, 2019 9:16 am quote
Sheared clutch rivets?

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Fri Aug 02, 2019 9:20 am quote
whodatschrome wrote:
Sheared clutch rivets?
We will see in a couple weeks when I get back. I do not have a cosa clutch in it. The old style clutch. I do have a bgm super strong clutch with cr80 plates on order at mercato that I was waiting to purchase once I had some regular income again next month. Looks like I'll be using public transportation until then!
Molto Verboso
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Fri Aug 02, 2019 9:35 am quote
After rereading your post, it almost sounds like a rear hub area issue? Maybe somehow the hub gets cockeyed against the brake shoes, causing it to bind up when there's weight on the scooter?... whether it's a loose axle nut, damaged axle or hub splines? I'm just shooting from the hip here.
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Fri Aug 02, 2019 10:02 am quote
It's not the rear wheel. When tow came we tried to lift rear and push it in front tire. The front was the seized.. so it's either front brake or front hub bearing.

Better than I expected.
Molto Verboso
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Fri Aug 02, 2019 11:09 am quote
swiss1939 wrote:
It's not the rear wheel. When tow came we tried to lift rear and push it in front tire. The front was the seized.. so it's either front brake or front hub bearing.

Better than I expected.
Psh...that's easy then. The most common issuse that cause it are either-

A-brake lever is too tight at the pivot for various reasons. Remove lever, clean off corrosion, grease, then reinstall.

B-sticky brake piston in the caliper. Remove piston cup, clean off corrosion, then reinstall.

"A" is most common and the easiest fix. You can easily test to see if that's the issue by manually pushing the lever as far forward as you can with your hand (if you don't have any tools on you)...or by loosening the pivot scew a little bit with a screwdriver (if you do have tools).
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Fri Aug 02, 2019 11:21 am quote
Never would have guessed...
Interesting result uncovered. One of the screws from the front hub disc plate came out and got jammed between it's hole and the front axle seat arms and took a bite out of the axle seat. I think the bearings are still good. Hopefully this axle seat is still useable. Anyone have objections to me just rolling with it after putting the one bolt back on the disc plate with loctite?

Funny thing is that highway I run 12 mile tests on was clean yesterday. Today when I ran my test on it I noticed they stripped the pavement for the first 2 miles on it last night. It was a pretty rough ride till I got back to clean pavement. More proof how crappy these Staten island roads actually are.

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This damn screw was the offending party.

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Found a creative new way to manufacture curved screws.

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Fri Aug 02, 2019 11:38 am quote
Swiss - damage to the axle seating is fairly minor - and not jagged. when you have a chance - would be smart to polish the gouge out - to take away sharp edges you can't see that can cause crack propagation.

With that said - its not so deep - and personally - I would ride with confidence still. The bolt is much harder then the aluminum axle seating - and basically just machined it a little best I can see.

I think your fine.

*Edit - on a positive note - enjoy the vacation. You are close on jetting - and once you remove ALL of the disc bolts, and coat them with loc-tite, you should be back on the road in no time. Solved!

Last edited by charlieman22 on Fri Aug 02, 2019 11:53 am; edited 1 time in total
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Fri Aug 02, 2019 11:43 am quote
That was my thought. Just a little surface scrape. Going to home Depot now to find a suitable replacement screw and I think I can have this bike running again faster than the tow took.. Which is saying someone cause the guy was there in 30 min despite the 75 min quote and was excellent at strapping it down safely.
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Fri Aug 02, 2019 12:42 pm quote
Whoa, unexpected detour there.

Glad that bolt popped out while you were stopped on the side of the road and not while you were gunning it over the Verrazano.

That does not inspire a lot of confidence. Agree with cm, Iíd go around and give everything a once over. If that bolt can come loose who knows what else can.
Hooked
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Fri Aug 02, 2019 1:13 pm quote
That could have been dangerous...

Good that it fell out when stopped!
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Fri Aug 02, 2019 1:46 pm quote
whodatschrome wrote:
I though that just about every largeframe small block engine (except for the T5) uses the short reach "HS" plug, instead of the long "ES" plug? I would also think that you'd want at least a B8 plug with any cylinder kit as well?
Wow nice save whodatschrome!
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Fri Aug 02, 2019 2:09 pm quote
Every other screw on the brake disc was some level of loose enough to break free with a single finger on the allen wrench, from basically loose and ready to fall out all the way to just barely had to use effort to break free. Whatever version of loctite or other brand LML used 14 years ago looked decayed to the point of useless once I removed them all. Blue loctite for now until I get back and buy some red loctite.

For others with original LML front hubs.. check your brake disc screws!
Molto Verboso
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Fri Aug 02, 2019 2:59 pm quote
hibbert wrote:
whodatschrome wrote:
I though that just about every largeframe small block engine (except for the T5) uses the short reach "HS" plug, instead of the long "ES" plug? I would also think that you'd want at least a B8 plug with any cylinder kit as well?
Wow nice save whodatschrome!
I don't really deal with the small block Vespa engines too much, but one of my friends told me years ago to always carry a spare HS plug with me (in my onboard bag of tools and spares) for the "other guy" (in a group ride situation) who doesn't have a 200 engine...and i've had to give away a spare HS plug a couple times over the years. That's why my ears perked up when Swiss mentioned the ES plug on the previous page. I just figured that he had some sort of special order billet cylinder head or something that took a ES plug. I probably should have said something last month. But back on page 5 in the pictures of the spark plug chops...you can read the ES engraving on the side of the plug. Sorry everyone...
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Fri Aug 02, 2019 3:19 pm quote
New screw, loctite all around and you are golden. Good result. Nearly anything would have been a lot more expensive.
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Fri Aug 02, 2019 4:25 pm quote
The hits keep coming!
So I got the front tire fixed and tried to get out and finish jetting. Bike died again within 5 min. Electric start or kick start just spins piston with no resistance. Pulled spark and saw metal. Flashlight down the hole wasn't looking good so I pulled the head off and it's down for the count!

Gotta go out with a bang! I'm ashamed to say I killed my first cylinder or piston.
I will resurrect it! I'll save the figuring out what died and what went wrong for mid august.

At least I can enjoy my vacation starting tomorrow not thinking about this cause there is literally nothing I can do about it. Almost better than running almost right but not quite.

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tiny bead of sweat dripped down into the head almost like a tear from my eye. ha!

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Fri Aug 02, 2019 4:50 pm quote
whodatschrome wrote:
hibbert wrote:
whodatschrome wrote:
I though that just about every largeframe small block engine (except for the T5) uses the short reach "HS" plug, instead of the long "ES" plug? I would also think that you'd want at least a B8 plug with any cylinder kit as well?
Wow nice save whodatschrome!
I don't really deal with the small block Vespa engines too much, but one of my friends told me years ago to always carry a spare HS plug with me (in my onboard bag of tools and spares) for the "other guy" (in a group ride situation) who doesn't have a 200 engine...and i've had to give away a spare HS plug a couple times over the years. That's why my ears perked up when Swiss mentioned the ES plug on the previous page. I just figured that he had some sort of special order billet cylinder head or something that took a ES plug. I probably should have said something last month. But back on page 5 in the pictures of the spark plug chops...you can read the ES engraving on the side of the plug. Sorry everyone...
Hey man, nothing to worry about. You helped me immensely. The wrong plug was my fault for not cross checking the plug accurately. I'm sure running the wrong plug for over 1000 miles on this kit had something to do with the end result today.

I said when I started this that I wanted this kit to be my learning experience. I have no regrets on it so far as with all the issues up to date, I have learned a ton about setting up a carb, how important timing is and how/why to adjust it, tons about spark plugs... will never make this mistake again, and so many other little things plus many more to come.

On a side note, the P200 will be on hold for the foreseeable future as now that this is kaput, I feel I should just move on to the whole next stage I had always been planning on with this bike. I will tear the engine apart, replace the crank and clutch, match the case to the kit and set up port timing correctly. Only way is forward, no backing down!
Molto Verboso
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Fri Aug 02, 2019 7:21 pm quote
What a bad day. Disc is unlucky but whatever has happened to the rings is worse. Did it seize? What jetting was in there when it went? Looks bad but it will survive.
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Fri Aug 02, 2019 7:32 pm quote
After packing while watching TV I had some time to reflect post mortem. Made a critical mistake today as a result of rushing to get it running right.

Goal was to reset timing to 16 degrees, but result of a mistake was setting to 18 degrees and I did not manually confirm the change was correct.

Using fmp cheat sheet but accidentally swapping the measurements pictured below.

On top of 1200 miles of punishing it with wrong plug and hot temps.
Result.. Don't do what I did!

Screenshot_20190730-011420.png
Used this measurement on stator plate changes instead of the correct one. Led to 2 degrees too advanced timing

Screenshot_20190730-011452.png
Meant to use this measurement on stator plate. Rushing equals mistakes

Molto Verboso
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Fri Aug 02, 2019 7:54 pm quote
18 degrees didn't do this. 28 degrees probably wouldn't do this.

You can hear the little ping noise of the piston crying for help in this FMP video
Each one of those gouge marks on the head and piston is one ping noise. On scooters this it almost always due to very weak jetting. Which you confirmed by PM that had been done during yesterdays "off piste experiments". Every day's a school day.

Last edited by Jack221 on Sat Aug 03, 2019 3:36 am; edited 1 time in total
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Sat Aug 03, 2019 1:01 am quote
Damn Swiss,
That was a tough day.
Sorry brother.
They say it's always combo of issues stacking that brings down a plane.
Thought u had dodged the bullet when plug and lean jetting got flagged. Hidden break in CHT was just downright unlucky - no visibility to actual temps that mighta flagged earlier was afforded.
Positive note - tear down and build up is now probably 4 hours not 4 days for u with experience.
Any chance a solid honing, some fine sandpaper, and a new set of rings would put u back on the road? About same cost as two weeks of public transit and a lot more fun. U'd be able to jet from 1000 feet, eyes closed and one hand tied behind back.

Just a thought.

Enjoy break.

-CM
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Sat Aug 03, 2019 3:32 am quote
Looks like you might have had a bad crank and it took the top end out. Did you still have a stock Stella crank in there?
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Sat Aug 03, 2019 9:04 am quote
Sorry to hear, swiss.

On the bright side, you learned something and didnít get hurt.
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Sat Aug 03, 2019 9:50 am quote
Quote:
Looks like you might have had a bad crank and it took the top end out.
MG/ Others - curious - what do you see that suggests?
As newby - I am not even sure where all that aluminum/steel(?) came from.
Rings?
Piston dna?
Is it melted in place like that - or just stacked like pencil shavings?
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Wed Aug 07, 2019 4:33 am quote
Basseterre St. Kitts
www.instagram.com/throwcomputer

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Wed Aug 07, 2019 6:15 am quote
Police scooter
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Wed Aug 07, 2019 6:53 am quote
Quote:
Basseterre St. Kitts
seems like a strong reaction to a piston failing - but hey - I get it - this stuff get's frustrating.

Once the beard comes in - perhaps you will be up to returning.



Enjoy!
Beautiful.
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Wed Aug 07, 2019 1:25 pm quote
charlieman22 wrote:
Quote:
Basseterre St. Kitts
seems like a strong reaction to a piston failing - but hey - I get it - this stuff get's frustrating.

Once the beard comes in - perhaps you will be up to returning.



Enjoy!
Beautiful.
Not sure what you mean. I got a beard. Ha!

IMG_20190807_162306_785.jpg

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Wed Aug 07, 2019 6:45 pm quote
swiss1939 wrote:
charlieman22 wrote:
Quote:
Basseterre St. Kitts
seems like a strong reaction to a piston failing - but hey - I get it - this stuff get's frustrating.

Once the beard comes in - perhaps you will be up to returning.



Enjoy!
Beautiful.
Not sure what you mean. I got a beard. Ha!
Needs a trim!
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Thu Aug 15, 2019 7:33 am quote
Damage Survey
Back from break. Work starts up again next week with my spare time dwindling from here on out. Took the kit off to survey damage and I think the cylinder is salvageable. Marks on it do not appear to be anything but marks to the honing surface as I can't feel any grooves in the bore scraping fingernail across the lines visible. Piston is shot, head is shot, rings seem to be intact. To replace the head, piston, rings and gudgeon pin would cost $30 less than to buy a whole new kit, unfortunately SIP website now has this kit discontinued?!
kit: 31171810

I hope I do not need to crack the cases to clean out any shrapnel cause I would like to just replace the parts and get back to running condition. Should I worry about shrapnel in the crank case from damage to the piston? Paging Dr. Jack and the modern vespa NSM medical review board!

I'm also wondering how it completely lost compression when the rings are intact and the piston isn't holed. The only thing I can think of is that the gouges in the top edges of the piston head allowed air to leak through ring gaps and escape.

Here are photos of my mistake...

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bearing shell damaged. 3 marks along the side.

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Thu Aug 15, 2019 7:44 am quote
by the way, I hear shoe goo works wonders.
Molto Verboso
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Thu Aug 15, 2019 8:02 am quote
Is it a reed valve engine?? Check your reed petals. Maybe they broke and thatís the reason for the damage?? IMHO cylinder head is fine. Just smooth it out a bit with sandpaper and slap it on. New piston and youíre good to go...
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Thu Aug 15, 2019 8:03 am quote
It is a reed valve engine.. LML/Stella. I'll check that now. Thanks for the suggestion!
Molto Verboso
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Thu Aug 15, 2019 8:35 am quote
I'd definitely worry about piston shrapnel getting into all the bearings. If you still have the stock LML crank, i would pitch it into the bin ASAP and get a quality one (or get yours rebuild with a quality connecting rod kit). It's well documented that Stella cranks have a very high mortality rate (about a 2500 mile average life expectancy). I would also at bare minimum replace both the fly side and small end bearings. Those little needle bearings have a hard enough time staying alive on tuned motors when metal bits aren't going through them. From the pics, it looks like the cylinder should easily be fixed by honing it.
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