CB350: Part 4

November 22, 2010

After a long month of scraping off gasket fiber and waiting for parts to arrive, the reassembly process is about to begin. The pistons are free, cleaned, and outfitted with new piston rings, and the engine is scraped, sanded clean, and shining with oil. During the next week, my friend Nirav and I are going to rebuild the engine, fix some holes found in the gas tank, and then see if we can get this thing started.

In order to reassemble an engine, you always need to replace the gaskets, which involves totally cleaning off the engine block of the old gasket. And depending on the kind of gasket used previously, this is either pretty easy or painfully annoying. In the case of my engine, it was the latter. The 1971 engine uses fiberglass gaskets which stick pretty strongly to the engine block, and can only be removed with hours of patience, lots of semi-paste paint remover, and an flat x-acto blade. I tried all kinds of gasket removers (CRC Gasket Remover, Permatex Gasket Remover) and solvents (WD-40, Strypeeze Semi-Paste Paint Remover, Acetone) and different blades (x-acto holders, putty knives), and the best combination I found was just a flat x-acto blade with no holder and soaking the gasket in the strypeeze and then WD-40 to get as much of the gasket as you can, and finally finishing it off with some plumbers cloth and more WD-40. It takes patience and perseverance, but its worth it.