First Belt, Roller, Shoe Change Done BUT......
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Hooked
MP3 500
Joined: 15 Dec 2011
Posts: 138
Location: Gilroy, California
Wed Oct 09, 2019 10:05 pm quote
Well, I finally did my own belt, Dr Pulley Slider and shoes replacements today.
Not hard, but nerve wracking knowing that if I do it wrong and can't fix it right, it's a long road to San Francisco. Anyway, I'll find out tomorrow if everything runs fine since I had a dinner to attend and it went late.
Question though. I wanted to change out the spark plugs as well, and when I took off the little cover to access the plugs, I couldn't get the wires off the plugs. They just won't budge. I'm used to just a firm pull and it's off. These are feeling like there's a trick to squeeze somewhere to cause a release, or unscrew something to release. I checked the wiki, but there's nothing for the 2009 MP3 500. I did a forum search using +'s to get the exact wording, nothing helpful, just seeing that others had changed them fine. SO, what am I missing?
Any advice will be much appreciated.

Special Thanks to BubbaJon for his pictorial for the change! It came in very
handy for me and is a permanent PDF in my files.
Molto Verboso
Kymco AK550
Joined: 09 Feb 2008
Posts: 1119
Location: UK
Wed Oct 09, 2019 11:43 pm quote
I never had a 500 but on the various Piaggios/MP3s I did have the plug caps could be tight because of the hard rubber rather than the metal terminal clip. If you were working on a cold engine I would try again with it hot. It can also be awkward to get a straight pull in the tight space available.
Veni, Vidi, Posti
Neutrino MP3 492.7 AK, 2013 Moto Guzzi Norge
Joined: 29 Mar 2008
Posts: 21406
Location: Harriman, Tennessee, Tn
Thu Oct 10, 2019 4:57 am quote
plug wires can get stuck, twist them 3-4 times before trying to pull the STRAIGHT off. you can also buy a spark plug cap tool at a auto parts store that can aid in removing them. the look like a long pair of pliers that are cut out and rubber tipped for going around the bottom portion of the cap.

when installing new plugs be very careful and only hand thread them in at least half way to prevent cross threading.
Hooked
MP3 500
Joined: 15 Dec 2011
Posts: 138
Location: Gilroy, California
Thu Oct 10, 2019 8:44 pm quote
Thank you for the advice gentlemen. I will try the twisting 3-4 times before I invest in the pullers. At least I know I'm not imagining things.
Molto Verboso
Kymco AK550
Joined: 09 Feb 2008
Posts: 1119
Location: UK
Thu Oct 10, 2019 11:48 pm quote
Co0lMiNt wrote:
Thank you for the advice gentlemen. I will try the twisting 3-4 times before I invest in the pullers. At least I know I'm not imagining things.
also take care not to apply any sideways force. Its surprisingly easy to snap the plug insulator in this situation.
Hooked
Joined: 27 Oct 2016
Posts: 232
Location: England
Fri Oct 11, 2019 4:01 am quote
My plug caps were tight. Once I got them rotating a bit, I pulled them off hot but taking care to pull along the line of the plug. On refitting I have used some silicone grease on the white china part of the plug.
Veni, Vidi, Posti
2008 MP3 500, 2013 BV350, 2020 Vespa Sei Giorni
Joined: 13 Oct 2012
Posts: 7494
Location: Ashburn, Va. Home to the Internet
Sat Oct 12, 2019 6:07 pm quote
Get Gorilla Grip Gloves. They just give you a better grip.
Hooked
MP3 500
Joined: 15 Dec 2011
Posts: 138
Location: Gilroy, California
Mon Oct 14, 2019 4:38 pm quote
Thanks for all the advice people! Now I got the wires off using the swivel action to loosen them up and the engine was still a bit warm. Now with a extension bar I still have to buy, the outside plug should come out easily, it's the inside plug that isn't allowing the spark plug socket to fit around it. I included a picture, which I'm sure you've all seen on your own bikes, for a visual. I was thinking about using my gator grip pliers on the end of the plug and turning it out, but if there are better/safer methods to be used I'd love to hear about them.

20191012_184325.jpg

Veni, Vidi, Posti
MP3 500, GTS 250 (both 2008 MY), 2012 Honda NC700 DCT
Joined: 02 Mar 2013
Posts: 5460
Location: Madison, Wisconsin
Mon Oct 14, 2019 5:02 pm quote
Do NOT use pliers on spark plugs.

I have never had a problem with getting my standard spark plug socket on any spark plug.

Are you using a spark plug socket, or a standard one?
If nothing else, get a thin wall socket and try that.
Molto Verboso
Kymco AK550
Joined: 09 Feb 2008
Posts: 1119
Location: UK
Tue Oct 15, 2019 12:17 am quote
Co0lMiNt wrote:
Thanks for all the advice people! Now I got the wires off using the swivel action to loosen them up and the engine was still a bit warm. Now with a extension bar I still have to buy, the outside plug should come out easily, it's the inside plug that isn't allowing the spark plug socket to fit around it. I included a picture, which I'm sure you've all seen on your own bikes, for a visual. I was thinking about using my gator grip pliers on the end of the plug and turning it out, but if there are better/safer methods to be used I'd love to hear about them.
Some plug sockets have walls which are too thick. I have had to grind down the outside more than once on different cars and bikes. Alternatively shop around for a better tool. 1/4 or 3/8 inch drive sockets are a good place to start because they're not usually quite so sturdy.
Veni, Vidi, Posti
Neutrino MP3 492.7 AK, 2013 Moto Guzzi Norge
Joined: 29 Mar 2008
Posts: 21406
Location: Harriman, Tennessee, Tn
Tue Oct 15, 2019 4:48 am quote
I will repeat , DO NOT use pliers.

go to ebay or amazon and order a thin wall spark plug socket.
Hooked
MP3 500
Joined: 15 Dec 2011
Posts: 138
Location: Gilroy, California
Wed Oct 16, 2019 11:35 am quote
Thanks again. I didn't know there was a thin wall plug socket. I have 2 and they are both 13/16th, but the walls seem kinda thin already. Going to have to check out the shops to know for sure. All right then, I am armed with knowledge to go out and get the proper tools!
Hooked
2010 gts 300 super. 09 MP3 500 lite
Joined: 02 Apr 2013
Posts: 442
Location: tampa
Wed Oct 16, 2019 11:41 pm quote
factory tool kit on bike has nice spark plug socket tool. just changed plug on a beo 500. had to use the tool from my mp3 500 to get plug out.
Hooked
MP3 500
Joined: 15 Dec 2011
Posts: 138
Location: Gilroy, California
Thu Oct 17, 2019 6:09 pm quote
egads! I have no idea where mine is, or if I even got one. I truly don't recall having it. Going to go with aftermarket tools, and then search a bit for
the included stuff to see if I did get it.
Hooked
MP3 500
Joined: 15 Dec 2011
Posts: 138
Location: Gilroy, California
Mon Oct 21, 2019 9:38 pm quote
So, thanks to jerryd's suggestion, I found my tool kit. Was under the seat all along in it's black plastic bag, just blended in so well and I have a can of Seafoam in front of it, so I never noticed it. The spark plug tool it comes with is a perfect fit, but a real beast to get turned in the tight space. Still, got the
sparkies out, and they were sure burnt. Now I don't have sudden loss of idle and chugging, or stalling. It didn't happen everyday, but enough to be bothersome.
Everything is running nicely now, and I've reset the maintenance icons on the dash. Should be good for thousands of miles now. Thank you all on this forum who are kind enough to 'chime in' when someone calls out for help!
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