Suzuki Burgman USA Forum banner

1 - 20 of 24 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi All, here's my Burgman AN400 K3 Story.
Warning: Long thread :)

Background
I’ve owned a few BMWs in the past and still have my 70s 90/6 (which I hope to breathe life in to someday soon). My recent machine was a BMW850GS which I owned for 6 years however I was using it very little and while I liked the bike I found it a little too tall for me. In recent years I noticed more and more “big scooters” on the road and anyone I spoke to were full of praise for them. I also noticed that some regular bike folk also had some of these machines as a second bike. This got me thinking that possibly if I had one of these machines then I’d use it more frequently and also use it for my 7 mile commute to work. I put the word out that I was interested in doing an exchange on my 2000 BM for a Burgman and a fellow BM biker got back to me. To cut a long story short, on Sunday 23rd Dec 2012 we did an exchange deal and I now owned a 2004 Burgman 400. Christmas had come early.

After a quick run through on what does what, how to operate the alarm etc. I had a very pleasant 1hr+ journey to my home on that Sunday afternoon and was impressed at both the speed and comfort of the machine. My back (which tended to ache on the BM) showed no signs of discomfort at all which was great. My mantra for most of the trip home was “the front left lever is a brake and not a clutch”.

Operation Dismantle
On arrival home, herself came out to greet me and gave her nod of approval and was generally happy to see the excitement in my eyes. After a quick cuppa I hauled the bike in to my garage and started to carry out a more detailed inspection. It was then that I noticed quite an amount of corrosion in and around the frame area. Now I had seen some on the bottom on the frame on my initial “pre purchase” inspection however this could be considered normal for an 8 year old bike especially if driven on winter salted roads.

[attachment=2:2lzeas6q]under_carriage.jpg[/attachment:2lzeas6q]

Seeing this rust prompted me to further investigate and to do this I started taking off stuff, or more specifically the panels. Now I must preface this by saying we were the type of kids that always broke our toys at Christmas time. So I thought to myself that there couldn’t be much at taking this stuff off. I started undoing clips, removing screws, eventually I had all the mid section and aft tupperware removed and piled in a corner of my workshop. I still needed to take more off and wasn’t happy until I had a completely naked machine.

[attachment=1:2lzeas6q]naked_bike_1.JPG[/attachment:2lzeas6q]

Taking off some of the front panels was a bit of a challenge though and I had to refer to a few YouTube clips in order to be able to tackle it with confidence. Isn’t the internet great for this stuff and fair play to those of you who take the time to put up this informational stuff. Anyway, I eventually got all the plastic off and could finally see the extent of the corrosion. Basically every single weld point on the frame had rust on it to various degrees of extremity. It was worse lower down (nearer the road) than nearer the top but no welded joint was rust free. Having said that all of this rust was cosmetic and no structural deterioration was evident. My goal in all of this is to have a nice machine that will not be corroding away before my eyes. my inner voice telling me that you need to get a number of years use out of the machine….then I wondered what the typical life span mileage wise of the Burgman 400. I wonder who out there holds the record for the current highest mileage machine.
Now that I had all the plastic off I could really see the full extent of the corrosion and felt that my initial plan of just treating the welds with everything else in situ would just be too difficult and not a proper job. Also it being Christmas I had a little extra time on my hands and decided to spend most of it having fun working on the burg (rather than doing house chores). However round about this time I started to get nervous re being able to put everything back together. The screws, plastic clips and all the other bits were starting to make quite a pile in the corner of my workspace. With this in mind I started to make notes and take photos of everything I was doing. I also started to keep the various nuts and bolts grouped together for what they were off, screwed back in to where they came out of (or taped to the piece that they came off). I also started to take lots of photos. Things make sense when one is taking stuff apart however I didn’t feel confident that I would remember where everything would go back in a number of weeks (or months ?)time.
So plan B was to now remove a few more bits from within and around the frame thereby allowing me better access to the problem areas. I removed the engine, radiator, etc. My Haynes manual (purchased on Day 2) said the fuel tank can be removed by taking it out the front end of the frame (radiator removed) however I couldn’t see how this could be achieved as the front mudguard seemed to restrict this. I then removed the front wheel and started to remove the mudguard however the bolt on the left hand side would not budge. This was only my second failure in the project so far, the other being a bolt on the engine which sheared. There was no way that this hex head dome bolt was coming off for me and that’s despite using in impact driver. Eventually I resorted to removing the complete fork leg with mudguard attached. The tank easily came out then as there was nothing to restrict it.
Another day or two went by and soon all that was left on the frame was the steering head, all the wiring and some brake lines etc. At this stage I got a bit more cocky and went for plan C which would be a complete strip down. By now I was making short video clips of the dismantling process as I wanted to be sure that I’d know how to put back of all this wiring and other plumbing stuff. I don’t want to find out at final assembly time that a piece of Tupperware won’t fit back because of a way I re-routed / re assembled something. So with this in mind I made a few short reminder video clips where I talk through some stuff such as the route of the wiring loom, etc.

[attachment=0:2lzeas6q]bare_frame.jpg[/attachment:2lzeas6q]

Coming next.....Part 2 The Restoration

All the best
Fran
Limerick, Ireland
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
Part 2. The Restoration

So my first part of the restoration task was to tackle the fuel tank. This wasn’t in too bad a shape and just had some surface rust on the seam that joins the top and bottom half together. I lightly sanded this away and coated the whole tank with a liquid rust convertor.

[attachment=4:sj47udob]tank_seam.JPG[/attachment:sj47udob]

I then applied two coats of hammerites rust primer and followed this with two coats of their main black smooth product. I got slightly alarmed when on reading the instructions re the top coat that you must apply any subsequent coats within 12 hours otherwise wait 2 weeks!
By now the frame is completely stripped down and I’m determined to turn the corner on this project i.e. I want to move on from the destructive phase and start the restoration proper. So armed with my trusty drill and wire brush attachment I took to the frame. This was an arduous task and after 4 hours of toil and sweat, the frame started to show signs of improvement but only in the areas that I could easily reach with the wirebrush. The other areas which were the most corroded were very difficult to get at. I found this little disheartening some frustration was starting to set in. Now I should also mention that most evenings were spent on the net surfing for information re all this type of stuff, seeking out the wise words from the worldwide database (including this forum). Anyway the upshot of this was that I was going to get the frame bead blasted. A quick “oogle” got me the name of a few local providers and the following day (after agreeing a price) I was off to the blasters. I dropped the frame in a mid day and much to my delight I got a call back at 4pm saying that the job was done and ready for collection (apparently another job in the queue got delayed so my bits got done). The frame was also sprayed with a Zinc Phosphate primer which apparently is a great barrier to corrosion (great news for me). I head home a happy camper with a tidy frame and that lovely newly sprayed smell.

[attachment=3:sj47udob]frame_home_car.jpg[/attachment:sj47udob]

My problem now is what to finish the frame in, originally I was planning on using a lot of the Hammerite products however on further research I discovered that Hammerite is mainly intended for very rusty metals but my frame was now rust free. A decent Hammerite support person also was honest enough with me and advised against using their product. I also decided against my initial rattle can idea as apparently you need to apply lots of thin coats (perhaps more than 10) and you also waste a lot of paint due to overspray of the thin frame. I started to do the math and reckoned that I’d get through about €100 in paint and that’s not to mention the fumes and time. I made another call on this and decided to give the frame to a local spray shop who’d do the job for me and for not much more that I could buy the paint for. They would also apply a lacquer coat on the finished job.

[attachment=2:sj47udob]Finished_frame.JPG[/attachment:sj47udob]

While all this was going on I managed to finish the tank job which was five coats in total. The rust neutralizer, 2 coats hammerite’s rust beater and 2 coats of hammerite’s black top coat (smooth). I tried both brush and a sponge roller (cut down small) for the job and while the roller was great for the initial coats, I found the final coat looked smoother when brushed on.
This photo shows the job mid-way. I painted the tank a half at a time as it was easier manage from a propping up point of view. This also meant that the joint between the bottom and top (rusty area) got extra coats.

[attachment=1:sj47udob]tank_in_progress.jpg[/attachment:sj47udob]

At this stage I also prepped and painted the steering head unit and the shock spring with the same black hammerite as used on the tank. These were handy enough jobs.
The next task on my list was to sort out the smaller parts i.e. the little bits that bolt on to the frame including the brackets that bolt on around the steering head, side stand etc. I spent 2 evenings sanding and removing all the paint and rust from these. I found that my new best friend was a little Dremel type tool with what looks like a diamond tipped conical head. This tool enabled me get in to all these awkward areas that one’s fingers or a sander can’t access. In hindsight I should have got these bits bead blasted as well as it was a tedious job.

At this stage I decided to move away from the Hammerite option as these parts were rust free so I rattle can sprayed them with an etch primer and brushed on three coats of a two pack paint i.e. paint where you add a hardener (lightly sanding in between). Some internet research a while back suggested that this is a really tough paint and very resistant to chipping. It also has the advantage over powder coating in so far as it can be easily touched up should the need arise.
The photo below show’s my other half applying the two pack paint on the centre stand. (in her art studio) :D

[attachment=0:sj47udob]wife_at_work.jpg[/attachment:sj47udob]

Meanwhile my shiny new frame came back and it looks great. I’m really keen now to start putting things back together and a new wave of enthusiasm has set in. My concern now of course is how bad the other parts will look when put back in the “new” frame.

Part 3 to follow

All the best
Fran
Limerick, Ireland
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Part 3 Restoration Continued

The engine is now starting to look very tatty so I decided to give it a good wash using an engine degreasing product. It cleans up a little better however I think that some sort of bead blasting is called for and some coats of engine paint.

[attachment=1:rtqjgrbv]engine_drive_unit.jpg[/attachment:rtqjgrbv]

Putting it all back together.

The plan now is to try and put it all back together. Most of the bits are painted or about to get their final coat. The naked frame is on the lift and I put on/back the first piece (see photo below). This was a very important moment as I feel I’ve turned the corner and am on the way back.

[attachment=0:rtqjgrbv]First_bit_back_on.JPG[/attachment:rtqjgrbv]

That's all for now folks!
I'll be adding to this in a few days time when I've managed to do some more work on the project.
Thanks for reading and check back here soon to see if the rest of the journey goes smoothly.
My target at the moment is to have a working Burgman by the end of January.
This may be pushed out a little if I have to order any Suzuki specific parts but I’m working on that already.

All good things
Fran
"if it's not broken then don't fix it......yeah right!"
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
739 Posts
Wow.. ! You do jump in with both feet for sure.. Please keep us posted.. very interesting..!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
11,296 Posts
Well done Fran, great read.
You will not regret taking the frame to the spray shop.
Too late now but when stripping the bike - plastic zip lok bags and a black indelible pen to label them is the organised way to go.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,936 Posts
For all the small bits, cathodic rust removal, also called electrolytic rust removal, works fabiously. It removes rust as well as paint without any need for elbow grease.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
902 Posts
Color me impressed.......good luck with the restoration.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,933 Posts
I just love how the rust is so attracted to the weld points on all of Suzuki's frames. I had to prep and re-paint mine as well.
The first thing I did when I got my used 2005 was strip it and inspect it and boy did I get surprised. Besides the rust developing I found dirt/mud daubers nests everywhere and none of the filters had never been serviced.
Looks like you have done a fine job and got to know your ride much better mechanically.
It's good to know what's beneath the Tupperware on our Scoots! :thumbup:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Part 2 continued “The Re-Assembly”
For the last few days I’m been slowly putting things back together on my Burgman and the parts in the boxes and on the floor are slowly starting to disappear. I had used some small parts storage boxes and zip lock bags during the disassembly and this was proving very beneficial now. Things have been going back together quite smoothly with just a few challenges (so far), my fist being that I sheared a stud when putting back the ignition switch mechanism. The fix for this involved cutting off the stud at the base, tapping it out and using a regular bolt. The wiring loom/harness proved to be the most challenging and just took a little time to figure out. It was most fortunate that I made some video clips prior to dismantling everything as these have proved invaluable over the past few days. The video clips proved especially useful when also trying to figure out where some of the rubber grommets/pieces went.
I’m also being a bit obsessive re making the metalwork as corrosive proof as possible and three products that I used for this were an epoxy based primer which I was able to spray in to some of the frame openings and the other item was a spray wax product which comes with a lance. The lance happened to fit nicely in to the holes throughout the frame (see photo below) and it coats the surfaces with a black tarry anti-corrosion substance. I’ve also started to use a product called ACF-50 (Anti -Corrosion Formula) as I heard really good reports about the stuff on the BMW forums. Apparently it was specifically designed for the aerospace industry as a corrosion preventer, acts as a lubricant, can also be applied to electrics and one application is said to last up to 12 months.

[attachment=2:2f4gbqql]frame_wax_internal.JPG[/attachment:2f4gbqql]

Possible fascinating fact: I also noted when re-attaching the horn that the horn fixing nut was the only 11mm size nut that I encountered during the whole process. And it looks like the original horn to me. Make a note of this in case it comes up in a quiz :lol: .
I had the engine bead blasted clean by the same company that did the frame and it returned to me looking all shiny and new. I had all the openings masked off and the engine prepped for blasting beforehand. However the blasting process was more aggressive than I thought and as a result I spent over an hour vacuuming and cleaning the blast grit out of the transmission area. I’m hopeful that I got all of it out and that there won’t be any negative repercussions later on.
I sprayed the newly cleaned engine with Holts VHT Aluminium Enamel Engine Paint and applied as much heat as I could to the area using a heater and some flood lights. Introducing heat via gradually running the engine is also part of this process but I can’t do this yet for a while.

[attachment=1:2f4gbqql]engine_painted_jpg.jpg[/attachment:2f4gbqql]

One of the front forks also proved to be a major challenge. During the disassembly I couldn't remove one of the outside dome head bolts that hold the front mudguard in place. At that time I left the forkleg attached to the mudguard and carried on with the rest of the job however the time had come to tackle this now. The bolt had been soaked in penetrating oil for a few weeks so my hopes were up that I could shift it. I had a replacement part on order from Suzuki so I wasn’t concerned about saving the bolt. The allen head was already damaged from previous attempts so I tried to shift it by hammering in tork head bit but this also failed to budge it. Next I drilled a tiny hole on the outer edge of the cap and attempted to shift it using a hammer and punch. I had some success with this in so far as I got a few degrees of movement however I still could not open it. I then decided to drill off the head as I was confident that I could catch the remaining part with a vice grips once the mudguard was removed. This plan did work in so far as I could grip the remainder of the bolt however the extra leverage of the vice grips proved too much and the bolt sheared flush with the fork leg. Next on the "to try" list was to drill through the stud and use an easy out stud extractor and see if this will remove it. Not only did this not work but I ended up breaking the stud extractor (photo below).
At this point I removed the broken stud extractor drilled completely through the bolt and re-tapped it. Success final had arrived however it was an evening’s work in itself. I’m now vigilant in coating all bolts with a little copper anti-seizing grease when re-assembling. This is especially important where different metals are involved which is this case are the aluminium fork leg and steel bolt.

[attachment=0:2f4gbqql]sheared_bolt.JPG[/attachment:2f4gbqql]

Everything else seems to have gone back pretty much to plan and I can’t think of any other issues I encountered at the moment. As of yesterday I had most of the machine back together and it finally came to the time where I was ready to fire it up. I was curious if it was possible or not to start the naked bike as I was thinking that with all the electronics including an aftermarket alarm (in my case) that something such as a switch or not having the lighting connected etc. would stop the bike from firing up. However on a cold Sunday morning I strapped the battery to the frame, connected it up, put some fuel in the tank, went through the alarm deactivation procedure and hit the start button. About 5 seconds later (I guess the fuel took a little time to get to the engine) the Burgman was alive and running beautifully. Woo Hoo this was another immensely satisfying moment.
The project is still running on schedule and the plan now is to fit a few new parts which have just arrived, such as a hand brake cable, fork dust seals, exhaust washers etc. The next and final challenge should be the fitting back of all the plastic bits. After that I should be on the road.
Come back soon for the final instalment :thumbup:
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,053 Posts
Awesome work but, after all that effort is it going to look like a stock Burgman or, are you going to make it something more distinctive (paint, lights, chrome, etc.)?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
11,296 Posts
Good work Fran.
Personally I would not have bothered bead blasting the donk but it does look sweet.
ACF 50 is an excellent, but expensive product - that frame is going to outlive you!
Congratulations on achieving a first time run too. :thumbup:
Respect.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
82 Posts
Great thread/project. It is the most interesting thing I've read all weekend!
And it will be all I have to live for until you're done. No pressure.

Oops, I see you already installed the engine. I have an 03 and it "loses" oil and
I believe the consensus is that fresh & properly installed rings cures the problem.
Too late for you to try that.

And I have a question regarding the corrosion. Was this one hour trip from your home
close to the ocean?

Again, excellent work. Thank you.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Part 2 continued “The Final Chapter”

First to reply to some questions
First of all thanks in general for all your comments :thumbup:
To Scooter_Mania. No I'm not doing anything special re a paint job. I just want an ordinary rust free machine (for now).
To Notdeadman, re the corrosion, apparently this is a common problem with these machines, expecially if you live in a damp climate. This particular machine was originally based in England and it's probable that their winter salted roads made this situation a lot worse.

So!.....back to the thread.

I’m happy that the bike is all in order mechanically, so now it’s time to take on the Tupperware challenge, but before I do this I decided to double check the torque settings on a number of key nuts and bolts. After this I find myself looking around at all these plastic bits and wondering where to even start. I regret now not making better notes (or video) on the dis-assembly of the tupperware, however I take my time and try to not get overwhelmed by the task. The first piece I put on is called the “front box” and boy is this an awkward piece to work with. Thankfully it’s very pliable and I eventually manage to coax it in to position. I then started to build on this and much to my delight soon had the whole front assembled. Three hours later I noticed that I had omitted the handbrake bracket which is screwed to the inner side of the front box and this was a major “DOH” moment :x so I decide to retire and return to this following day. The fix for this omission error on my part resulted in me having to remove the front headlight unit and undo many screws in order to get access to this area again :( . Luckily enough I didn’t have to remove the front box completely as I was able to fit the hand brake bracket by just easing it up a little i.e. enough for me to get my hands and a screwdriver in.
The next challenge now was how will I re-assemble the rear section and it took me quite a bit of time to figure out the order here too. My main approach was to start at the top and work down so the first piece to go on here was the back-rest and things followed on from there. My moment of confusion re this though was how to attach the tail light unit as I couldn’t see how one could fit the lower screws in to this section, access being too restricted. This resulted in more dis-assembly as I naively thought that it shouldn’t be problem fitting the under-seat storage section. Wrong! I had to remove a number of items such as the grab rails and the under-seat storage box in order to get the screws in to the tail light section. This was the last hiccup I encountered and everything else went smoothly albeit slowly together.
Finally, the last job I did was to change the oils and filter as I wanted to start my Burgman journey fresh in the knowledge that these items were up to date. Then, just as dusk was setting in I wheeled her out of my garage, started her up, and after letting her run for a few minutes headed to my local filling station to get fuel and have a celebratory ice cream :D . After this I went for a short and very cautious 30 minute spin just to check the brakes and verify that everything works.

The slight down side now is that all my efforts over the past 30 days are now hidden from view under the plastic but hey! at least I know what’s under there and am confident that it’s not corroding away.

Project Complete…..Burgman rust proofed. Tada (trumpet sounds). :cheers:

[attachment=0:302pjta5]finished_bike.JPG[/attachment:302pjta5]

Now I just need to get out there and clock up some miles.
Thank you all for reading and I look forward to staying in touch with exceptionally helpful forum.
Fran
(trying to return to normal living now and wondering what's on TV thesedays? )
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,053 Posts
:thumbup: job well done. Thanks for sharing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,973 Posts
Looks great nice job! I do have a question for you though. Shouldn't that be 2004 AN400 K4?

I ended up using a rust converter primer and Rustoleum Hammered paint on my '05 AN650's frame.

 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
902 Posts
Well done, and many thanks for the thread.

Now go and enjoy the fruits of your labours.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
Hi MJR,
I like the look of your frame paint job, looks great.

Re the Model question. The bike was initally purchased in early 2004 so my registration papers say it's a 2004, however the VIN number says that it's a K3 Model. My guess is that it sat in the showroom or was in stock in late 2003 prior to purchase.

Fran
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,973 Posts
BurgmanFran said:
Hi MJR,
I like the look of your frame paint job, looks great.

Re the Model question. The bike was initally purchased in early 2004 so my registration papers say it's a 2004, however the VIN number says that it's a K3 Model. My guess is that it sat in the showroom or was in stock in late 2003 prior to purchase.
Thanks Fran, lotta nice work/time you put in.

There use to be a time in the US that some states registered vehicles as the year they were first sold as opposed to the actual build model years.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
Update:
“they say trouble always comes in threes”

Here’s a quick update of some challenges I’ve had since getting back on the road. It’s kind of still related to the thread but this will probably be my last time updating this one.
So, I took the Burgman out for another 7 mile test run on a windy Monday evening just to get more used to the machine and to get more “air miles” under my belt. On returning to my place I noticed that the right hand indicators/turn signals had stopped working. I pulled the bike back in to my garage and started to investigate. First I thought that the switch had failed and sprayed some contact cleaner in there but with no success. A quick look at my Haynes manual mentioned that if a bulb had blown then that side might not work, the manual also mentioned that the handlebar switch gear seldom gave trouble. I then tried the hazard lights and at least the front and dash signals came on, however I noticed that the back bulb was out. This could be an easy fix I thought and immediately went to change the bulb. However once I got access to this area I noticed that the bulb wasn’t blown. What followed next was an evening of plastic removal as I foraged my way in to the tail light wiring connector. The good news however when I got there was that I found that the brown wire was badly corroded and broke away once wiggled. I ended up removing this connector block completely and replaced it with a number of inline connectors which I soldered instead of crimping. A quick scan through the Burgman Forum also came up trumps where I read that some UK owners also have had problems with corroded connectors. Anyway, this problem now looked to be solved but I also re-seated and sprayed some contact cleaner in to the handlebar connector that controls the turn signal / indicator function. This was easy enough to get at just inside the fuse area and required minimal removal of tupperware.
Before I put everything back together I decided to test everything one last time and it was then that I discovered one of the Brake/Stop bulbs also decided to fail. Luckily enough I had a spare and this (trouble #2) was an easy fix. So by the end of the evening I had the plastic back on and a fully functional indicator/turn signal/brake lights/stop signal system and I was happy. One major note to self though….never ever put on the back rest until everything else is in place first. I must have taken this item on and off at least four times during the evening.
And finally for trouble #3. I then decided to start up the bike and much to my disappointment found that it wouldn’t fire up, no fuel pump sound or anything. I refreshed my memory re kill switch, brake lever pressed, side stand up etc. and all was in order. I reassured myself that I hadn’t gone near any electrics to do with starting up the bike (although I had doubts). It was then that my attention was drawn to the aftermarket alarm which comes with a key fob. I noticed that nothing happened when I pressed any of the fob buttons. Luckily the bike came with a spare key and fob and once I tried this, the motor fired up fine. The batteries in the fob having decided to die on this very same evening.
I’m amused at how these little errors all came at once and seems to give some credence to the old saying that “trouble always comes in threes”.
The plan now is to get some more miles under my belt at the weekend and hopefully that’s the end of the surprises for a while.
All good things
Fran
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
606 Posts
I hope you can now enjoy your scoot and ride and enjoy it!
Ride safe :thumbup:
Wes
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top