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 Variator replacement due to mileage

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Loosemarbles
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Mighty Mouse
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Variator replacement due to mileage Empty
PostSubject: Variator replacement due to mileage   Variator replacement due to mileage I_icon_minitimeMon Dec 12, 2022 8:21 am

I was wondering if any of you kept your Swing long enough to replace the whole variator through sheer mileage?

My first I rode to death at around 150 000km's in 4 years. My second Swing is now reaching 150 000kms as well, so for Christmas I thought I would buy her a brand new OEM variator, new belt and some nice black Dr Pulley sliders. (I used the first sliders on both 1st and 2nd bike - so I think they need replacing!) Sliders coming from Germany. OEM parts from Megazip in the US.

Quite a bit of slipping and rattling going on under the variator cover at this point. But I could probably ride her for another 50 000kms without issue. Just thought I'd keep this bike for another 100 000, as the engine is up to it. (Not using a drop of oil between changes - I've used Motul semi-synthetic since I got her 'pre-loved' at 7 000kms.)

But I was wondering if anybody else has made this plan before?

I know from my first bike that the slightly convex variator face is now slightly concave...but the belt is only slipping a bit right now. Still it's my daily commute and I hope to retire in another 100 000kms. Wink
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Cosmic_Jumper
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Variator replacement due to mileage Empty
PostSubject: Re: Variator replacement due to mileage   Variator replacement due to mileage I_icon_minitimeMon Dec 12, 2022 8:58 am

I don’t recall anyone posting that they’ve worn out their variator. But you sure have made a well-reasoned case replacing it. It will be interesting to hear your take on the new variator. Interesting too to hear about the wear on both the Dr Pulley sliders and the wear in the variator roller/slider ramps . Good luck.

Oh, and regarding the variator rattle: those slide pieces do wear and allow the variator ramp plate to rock back & forth when the variator moves in & out. That’ll cause a “clacking” noise —most noticeable when first starting off but it will also cause a “rattle” which varies with the load on the variator. Best too to replace Honda’s slide pieces with Dr Pulley slide pieces. Kinda makes it all bullet proof. IMO.
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Loosemarbles
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PostSubject: Re: Variator replacement due to mileage   Variator replacement due to mileage I_icon_minitimeMon Dec 12, 2022 10:12 am

I don't think there is a service limit measurement for the driven pulley. I do get a kind of clacking noise at between 60 and 70mph depending on the load. It's been there during the whole 23000 miles I've owned the bike and it hasn't gotten any worse. My mileage is now 38000. I suspect there could be some wear in the ramp plate but I ignore it.

However, as cosmic_jumper mentions above, 'wearing out' the driven pulley would be some feat and replacing rollers/sliders, and especially the slide pieces, does improve the overall 'quietness' of the drive pulley area.


Last edited by Loosemarbles on Tue Dec 13, 2022 3:59 am; edited 1 time in total
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steve_h80
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Variator replacement due to mileage Empty
PostSubject: Re: Variator replacement due to mileage   Variator replacement due to mileage I_icon_minitimeTue Dec 13, 2022 2:33 am

150k km, that's well over 90k miles and the variator is only now showing wear, to me that isngood going, it just shows how well these bikes are built as standard.
Let us know how the rebuild goes.
Just as an aside what other maintenance have you done over the years? Has anything worn out besides drive belt and tyres? Have valve clearances needed work? Cam chain? Injector problems?
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GHM-PM
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Variator replacement due to mileage Empty
PostSubject: Re: Variator replacement due to mileage   Variator replacement due to mileage I_icon_minitimeTue Dec 13, 2022 8:11 am

I too would like to hear more of your experience with this project! Mine only has 26K miles or 42000KM so is still nearly new!!! Good luck with this.
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Mighty Mouse
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Variator replacement due to mileage Empty
PostSubject: Re: Variator replacement due to mileage   Variator replacement due to mileage I_icon_minitimeWed Dec 14, 2022 4:28 am

I shall certainly post pics once we have it apart. I'm lucky to have a race bike mechanic as a good friend. He comes from an era where they would machine every part of the engine to make it faster, and still holds a local record for the quarter mile. Unfortunately, he is a Suzuki fanatic and looks down on my lowly Honda. Laughing
My first Swing was not very well looked after, so I was happy to replace with a low mileage Swing when the time came. But this one has been well looked after, so keeping it is a no-brainer! Also they are becoming increasingly hard to find as replacements in SA.
I'm happy to say I have only ever had to replace 2 headlight bulbs, 2 spark plugs and 2 batteries in the time I have had it. (Apart from oil, filters, tyres, belt(s) and some coolant). We checked the valves at around 75 000km's. But other than that....BULLETPROOF!
And yes, side pieces have been ordered along with the Dr Pulley sliders. santa
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Mighty Mouse
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Variator replacement due to mileage Empty
PostSubject: Re: Variator replacement due to mileage   Variator replacement due to mileage I_icon_minitimeWed Feb 08, 2023 4:25 am

A report back....

This was a 4 month epic. From ordering the OEM parts to waiting for them endlessly to having the time to get them all installed. The parts ordered from Megazip US spent a whole month enjoying a tropical holiday in Jamaica! The rollers came from Pulley Tech in Germany, via the UK, then South Africa. I really wanted 27 or 26gm rollers, but they contacted me to say they only had 25gm (which they advised I use) or nothing. So 25gms with some misgivings it was to be.

Last weekend we pulled out the old variator parts, which had not been giving me any sign of trouble other than that irritating (roller) rattle when I started the engine or just idling along. The belt and drive face came off easily; the driven face not so. All parts showed some sign of wear, but no cause for alarm. When the time came to open up the Driven Face we ran into a hitch. The manual says all parts just fall out after the spring circlip is removed but ours was fixed solid.

We discovered all the (originally moving) parts were welded together with rust. The seals which are supposed to keep the hubs dry and sealed, obviously did not! Liberal applications of WD-40 and some bent levers later we discovered that I needed to buy several more parts which had been damaged by rust. For the moment we put it back together with the brand new drive & driven face and a new belt. Also the old clutch shoes, which have been taking up the slack for the rusted parts and have worn unevenly - down to the metal on the inside.

I have to say it drives fantastically with a brand new Honda variator/belt - as you would expect! I cannot say it is any faster or better with the lighter rollers, but the fuel figures appear to be improved. This is my second Swing and it has always been around 10% thirstier than the first.

I’m not thrilled by the lighter rollers as they make the engine work harder at pulloff. Once I’m doing 100km or over, the engine is much happier. We might decide to put 4 of the old 28gm rollers back in when we open it up again. Can you believe the old rollers have done over 200 000km’s - as used in both of my Swings? When weighed, they still showed 28gms!

Variator replacement due to mileage UXos9pT

Variator replacement due to mileage MJpO9q0

Variator replacement due to mileage 2wdHnB4
Old 28gm Rollers

Variator replacement due to mileage 6BMRbbW

Variator replacement due to mileage BMwUIX7
Unfortunately I will need to replace these shoes. The rusted hubs have been hard on the clutch. Worn all the way to the metal!

Variator replacement due to mileage XOBVRpV
The rusted hub on the Driven Face. Even the spring was rusted in place!

Variator replacement due to mileage Qz5ctQU

Variator replacement due to mileage 3z9LfHs
The old hub showing visible damage.

Variator replacement due to mileage 0RqJbWH

Variator replacement due to mileage H6TsK11
New hub in place for the Driven Face.

Variator replacement due to mileage GPmFWcD
Signs where the clutch shoes have been working hard.
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GHM-PM
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Variator replacement due to mileage Empty
PostSubject: Re: Variator replacement due to mileage   Variator replacement due to mileage I_icon_minitimeWed Feb 08, 2023 6:43 am

Excellent report! Thanks for sharing. I too replaced my OEM rollers with sliders. I stuck with 28g though as I was happy with the power band as it was. Enjoy your scooter!
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Loosemarbles
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Variator replacement due to mileage Empty
PostSubject: Re: Variator replacement due to mileage   Variator replacement due to mileage I_icon_minitimeWed Feb 08, 2023 7:00 am

Thanks for the update. The drive pulley looks OK but..WOW, that driven pulley is a mess! I believe it's important use the correct type of grease inside that driven pulley assembly. When I dismantled my assembly the grease poured out like thick oil, and that when it was cold.

Glad you have it all back together with shiny new parts. thumbs up
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sonuvabug
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Variator replacement due to mileage Empty
PostSubject: Re: Variator replacement due to mileage   Variator replacement due to mileage I_icon_minitimeWed Feb 08, 2023 1:08 pm

Mighty Mouse wrote:
... snipped ... My first (SWing) I rode to death at around 150 000km's in 4 years. My second Swing is now reaching 150 000kms as well ... But I could probably ride her for another 50 000kms without issue. Just thought I'd keep this bike for another 100 000, as the engine is up to it. (Not using a drop of oil between changes - I've used Motul semi-synthetic since I got her 'pre-loved' at 7 000kms.)

Thanks for sharing your story Mighty Mouse. Sure does instill confidence that, properly maintained, this could be the SWing I retire my riding days with. Makes me think I let go of my last one way too early.

Keep us posted.
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zrx212
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Variator replacement due to mileage Empty
PostSubject: Re: Variator replacement due to mileage   Variator replacement due to mileage I_icon_minitimeWed Feb 08, 2023 5:20 pm

It really looks like a lots of belt dust over a lot of those parts, belt dust needs to be blown out periodically, I do at every oil change. I believe you can clean and continue to use those old DRP sliding weights. The clutch outer bell either needs to be replaced or scuffed/sanded well, before installing new clutch shoes, start with 80 grit and work up to 220 grit, you need to use some kind of flat sanding block for your sandpaper to kind of evenly/flat sand as much as possible, do you have a local brake shop that can bond new shoes on old weights, found that to be common thing in South America, they also rectified the clutch bell, not sure about your area. Good Luck !
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