As you already know, at Enduro Experience Croatia we have a small workshop where we deal with repairs that may typically be necessary during or after an enduro tour. Those of you who know Dragan, our guide, also know that he is a very skilled and passionate mechanic. And in our small village, word travels fast so that almost every day we find in our garage a few bikes that need to be fixed. Whether these belong to our guests or to our enduro friends who live nearby.
Some works we do every day
The problems that we usually solve require basic tasks, such as changing the parts that are most likely to break during an enduro tour: the various levers, plastics, hand guards (and even the tail when someone goes too far with wheelies).
And there are maintenance operations such as changing oil, or the chain and so on. Finally, it can get more complex, from changing the bearings to setting the forks or even replacing the piston.
Some works we do more rarely
Today actually we had quite a challenging issue. The connecting rod! The one that we saw one an old KTM 300 EXC, I assure you, was not in very good shape and you can see that in the video below.
But how can you tell when the connecting rod is not doing its job anymore? Well, a first clue might be an unusual scraping noise, but the best time to check its condition is while the piston is being changed. In fact, while you’re at it, take the connecting rod with the crankshaft apart, hold it with two hands and try tapping lightly with a rubber mallet on the top of the connecting rod. Or just try to move it. Be sure that when it moves, you can feel it and see it. And what happens if you don’t change it in time? Nothing good, of course. The piston stroke will lengthen and the piston, stressed by contact with the engine head, can crack. In more serious cases can even destroy the engine.
So, better to act. It should be clear that changing a connecting rod is not a job that takes a half an hour. Indeed, first you need to disassemble the engine, remove the connecting rod removed and fix it. And then, of course, you need to put back everything in the right place! But we weren’t frightened and patiently disassembled piece by piece until we removed the affected part. We then took the piece to the mechanic (a former KTM official for Istria) who changed the internal bearings and did the balancing and alignment.
And check out the old KTM 300 EXC Enduro back from the dead. See you at the next one!