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2yr. maintenance-Buddy 125

Posted: Wed Mar 02, 2016 7:11 am
by BoulderBud
In the first 6,000 miles, all I've done for maintenance so far is change the oil 3 times, the gear oil once, and the spark plug once. My shop is 60 miles away and I haven't been back there since I bought it.

So, since my 2 year old bike still runs very smoothly(sometimes slightly rougher when it's cold outside), would it be a good idea to have anything else checked or worked on, like a valve adjustment?

Also, is there a way to partially clean the carb without removing it? I have used an ounce of sea foam in the gas a couple of times.

Thank you for any answers to my 2 questions. I really appreciate all the help I've gotten here the past two years!

Posted: Wed Mar 02, 2016 7:58 am
by babblefish
You've done well doing some of the maintenance yourself. At the 8000 mile mark, I'd check the CVD belt for wear, the fuel and air filter for too much dirt accumulation. I assume you check tire pressures regularly. And yes, definitely check the valve clearances now, it's due. As for cleaning the carb, unless you've been using really low quality fuel (why would you?), it probably isn't necessary. If you must do something, I've found that Chevron Techron added to the fuel works really well in my car. But, during my scooters' first life (before the connecting rod gave up), the scooter, hence the carb had about 16K miles on it and the insides of the carb was still clean. I never used any fuel additive, though I almost always filled up with premium fuel. Yes, my poor scooter has had a hard life and has been run hard and put away wet on several occasions. My scooter is now in its' second life with a rebuilt engine with a few mods to make things a bit more interesting.

Posted: Wed Mar 02, 2016 3:20 pm
by DeeDee
I agree with babblefish, Valve check for sure. I usually find the exhaust valve needs adjustment and the intake is fine. I check them every 4,000. I start being concerned with the belt by 8,000 miles, and replace it at 10,000. At 8,000 I would measure the belt width, and check it over for signs of cracking.
If you are riding the scooter regularly, and add seafoam from time to time, and your carb is not acting up, there is nothing you need to do. The buddy 125 fuel delivery system is bullet proof as long as you keep it moving.

Posted: Wed Mar 02, 2016 5:44 pm
by Dooglas
I agree with babblefish and DeeDee - The valves and CVT belt/rollers are the two maintenance items to think about. The valves are a matter of check, and adjust if needed. The belt and rollers are a bit different in my opinion. Sure, checking for cracking and for obvious wear is fine. When you check, blow out dust as well. In reality, however, many belts look fine at 8 or 10 thousand miles. That does not mean that they will run happily for many more miles. Having a belt break and shred while riding certainly strands you - and may lock up the variator at speed. My practice is to do the inspection at 5 to 6 thousand miles, but actually change out the belt and rollers at 8 thousand as preventative maintenance. (perhaps I am a belt and suspenders kind of guy :wink: )

Posted: Thu Mar 03, 2016 4:22 am
by babblefish
Rollers! I forgot about the rollers. They can get flat spotted in as little as 4000 miles depending on your riding conditions (lots of hills) and how "well fed" you are. To check them requires disassembly of the variator, so if you're not comfortable doing that, take it to a shop. I had a set flat spot on me within 4000 miles so I replaced the stock variator with a Dr Pully setup which uses sliders instead of rollers and these have held up well.

Posted: Fri Mar 04, 2016 3:22 am
by BoulderBud
Thanks very much guys for your time and helpful comments. Sounds like checking the valve clearance is the highest priority. I looked it up on the maintenance manual, and though it doesn't look too tough, my confidence level is not that high. Changing oils was somewhat challenging for me. I still can't figure out how to get the proper gear oil level, so I just filled it up and used a turkey baster to suck out the last 2-3 inches. With that said, I love a challenge and may still decide to go after the valves myself.

Couldn't a shop check and adjust the valves in just a few minutes? I may call them to see how much they'd charge, and see if I could watch them to learn for the future.

As for the belt and rollers, sounds like I can wait to check these. I'm extremely easy on my bike. Almost all my riding is level at less than 35mph, for under 20 minutes, and never go WOT, but accelerate smoothly and easy. It's enough of a thrill for me just to ride around easy, since it's my first bike ever. And, I only weigh 160lbs.

Thank you guys again! I love learning about my bike from more experienced people here! And I really enjoy being self reliant.

Posted: Fri Mar 04, 2016 3:47 am
by skully93
I've abused the tar out of my 150, and other than regular maintenance and CVT 'upgrade' mine is fine at 16k miles and 4 years of hard living. DeeDee has been kind enough to assist me with the abuse I do to the frame.

Since you take such short trips, I would consider a battery tender. At low RPMs and short trips, the charging system likely isn't doing much for the life of the battery.

Posted: Fri Mar 04, 2016 12:46 pm
by PeteH
BoulderBud wrote:Couldn't a shop check and adjust the valves in just a few minutes? I may call them to see how much they'd charge, and see if I could watch them to learn for the future.
Yeah, it's an easy check = the underseat cover comes off, then the valve cover, then you rotate the engine around to to the reference mark with either the kickstarter or the variator bolt (if the transmission cover is off). By the way, if you're replacing the spark plug at the same time, pulling out the old plug makes it far easier to rotate the engine around.

Then the valve clearance is measured with a feeler gauge, and you loosen the locking nut, screw in/out the tappet, then re-tighten the lock nut and re-check. The only thing is - this has to be done with the engine dead-cold - you can't ride the bike to the shop and check the valves. This means an overnight sleepover for your Buddy.

Posted: Wed Mar 09, 2016 4:07 am
by jd
What I advise is, "Don't worry. Be happy."

My 2009 Buddy 125 just broke 9,000 miles. Since I purchased it in 2011 (NOS), I've changed the oil once per year, the oil filter every other year, and the spark plug most years. I changed out the rear end oil once. I run it on plain old regular gas, use Rotella 15W-40 non-synthetic oil, put some Seafoam in it over the winters, and leave it hooked to a battery tender using the 12v outlet. That's about it.

Today I took it to a friend's' to learn how to adjust the valves for the first time. They were perfect and required no adjustment. The simple truth is that if (1) you're not hearing ticking from the engine, (2) it starts easily, and (3) continues to run well, and restart, even when it's hot, your valves are probably within specs.

I was experiencing some lag on acceleration, so I decided to open up the CVT and replace the rollers for the first time. One had a flat spot, as it turns out. So I threw in the new ones, screwed everything back together and, voila, lag is gone. CVT belt measured within specs and looked fine, too.

After looking at the oil and plug, I decided to not even change them this year. No need. We went for a 65 mile ride, instead.

These little PGO bikes really don't require much care as long as you make sure they've got enough gas, air and oil. I think a lot of the maintenance that scooterists do on their bikes is mainly because they like to tinker. Nothing wrong with that if it's personally rewarding, but much of it is superfluous and unnecessary.


Posted: Tue Mar 15, 2016 4:42 am
by BoulderBud
Thank you so much for all your replies! It's nice to hear different perspectives. I'm so happy I got a scooter! So much better than getting in my cage. I love the sense of freedom and adventure, being outside, and you see so much more!

For now, I'm going to not worry and ride happy. If I notice any unusual sounds or a change in performance I will look into if further. I hope I'm not being penny wise and pound foolish, but it feels like a prudent course right now since the bike rides like its new.

Btw, I do use a battery tender when I don't ride for more than a week. And I check the tire pressure regularly. I know I'm due for a gear oil change. I've been putting it off because there's no fill indicator like on the engine oil. Guess I'll just use the turkey baster technique again.

Any more ideas for this newbie will be appreciated, whether related to 2 year maintenance or not.

Posted: Tue Mar 15, 2016 11:44 pm
by jd
This is how I easily replace my rear gear oil. ... UTF8&psc=1

They seem to be out stock right now but keep searching.