Each month we receive an overwhelming flow of technical questions from our readers. Everyone at ATVR including the night janitor carries an extremely heavy workload so as a last resort we were forced to put Mike Newsom in charge of answering your questions. Mikey is one of the most talented mechanics we know, but it's his off-the-wall remarks and repulsive attitude that keep him locked away in the garage. If you dare to bear his response, send your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org. We promise not to let Mikey use your name and embarrass you in front of your buddies.
Ask: I was recently removing my mate's exhaust to weld a new support bracket on and found one of the two exhaust manifold studs had snapped off inside the head. I can't find the rest of it, so it must have fallen off while he was out riding. I told him it was broken and he said to fix it. I tried an E-Z Out but it didn't work. Any ideas on what I can try next?
Mikey: Your mate may not be a mechanical genius, but it sounds like he has the right man on the job. That was a pretty clever call about the broken and lost stud falling off while riding, Einstein. What exactly did you plan on doing with it if you found it anyway? If you know how to weld, you should know how to put a little heat on that stud to help break it free. I'm guessing that "mate" of yours probably broke that stud when installing the exhaust and suckered you into fixing it.
Ask: I got my '08 KingQuad in a deep pool yesterday, and now I have water mixing with the oil. I was told to change the oil several times, which I did, and it is just now getting some decent color to it. I changed it four times. How many more times should I change it before I should feel comfortable driving it?
Mikey: So, you're the reason oil prices are shooting through the roof. This magazine does take a couple of months to make it to the newsstand, and I certainly hope you don't continue changing oil until it arrives. Water and oil don't mix. If there were motor oil in your coffeemaker, would you keep dumping the pot until the coffee begins to taste normal or would you thoroughly clean the machine and change the filter? Have you even considered changing the oil filter in your KingQuad, or is that beyond your mechanical abilities? It may also be a good idea to start the machine and let the clean oil circulate before draining it again and again. FYI, you can recycle all that used oil at your local auto parts center.
Ask: I plan on putting some 20-inch tires on my Honda 250X. The stock tires are 22 inches and are what I have on now. Will it slow down my machine any more, and will I have to change the sprocket? My current sprockets are 13/38. Also, my tires are 22x10-9 and the tires I'm getting are 11 inches wide. Will I have to get wider rims?
Mikey: First off, let's get something straight. The 250X is a great machine and it's not getting slower. Everything else just keeps getting faster. To answer your question, yes, a smaller tire will reduce your top-end speed but you will gain faster acceleration. A smaller rear or larger front sprocket will help to increase your top-end speed. This change will be great for your 250X if it's better performance you're after. If you're just being cheap and installing a set of free hand-me-downs, I wouldn't bother spending the extra cash on sprockets.