By Winston “Boss” McKannick
WHY DOES A BAD STARTER CAUSE
BATTERY TERMINAL CORROSION?
I own a 2009 Big Bear, and for the
past two months I have had corro-
sion build-up on the red (+) terminal.
The corrosion builds up every couple
weeks, and then it does not start. I
brush off the terminal with a steel
wire brush every couple weeks and
it is okay for a short time. The battery
is less than a year old. Dealer says
it is probably a bad starter. What do
Son, where do these dealers get
this drivel from? Battery terminal
corrosion has nothing to do with the
starter motor! This rapid build-up
of corrosion is most likely due to a
failure of the seal where the lead
“+” terminal enters the plastic case.
When the battery charges, sulfuric
acid fumes are released, and these
fumes combine with the lead terminals and cause corrosion. A multi-step attack will be necessary.
Clean the terminal and the battery
cable with baking soda and water to
neutralize the corrosion.
Make sure the battery terminal
face is flat so the cable fits tightly
against the face of the battery terminal.
From an auto-parts store, purchase
some Fluid Film. That stuff is the best
at controlling corrosion of all kinds.
Install the cable back on the terminal and snug it up tightly.
Coat the terminal/cable with Fluid
As a last resort, replace the battery. Note that if you choose to
replace the wet-cell YTX20L battery with a solid-state battery like a
Battery Tender lithium-iron phosphate, you will not have further corrosion problems because these batteries don’t have acid in them. The
difference in batteries is the YTX20L
has 270 CCA (Cold Crank Amps)
and weighs 11. 2 pounds versus 300
CCA and weighs 2.1 pounds with the
Battery Tender BTL18A300C.
FACTORY RAPTOR BEARINGS ARE
NOT THE PROBLEM
I own a 2013 Raptor 700, and in
early 2014 I blew out a rear hub
bearing, so I replaced the bearings,
and within six months I blew out
another bearing. I have done this
about every six months, and I have
come to the conclusion the Yamaha
bearings are junk! Do you think All
Balls bearings will last longer than
the factory bearings?
While All Balls bearings are fine
quality, they are not the answer
to your problem in this case. Your
problems with hub bearings started
way back in 2014 with the first bearing failure. Instead of changing the
bearings when the axle got loose,
you continued to ride it until one of
the bearings exploded. Before the
bearing exploded, both bearings
were worn and had side play. This
side play wore against the bearing
spacer, inside the carrier, and shortening the spacer. When you installed
new factory bearings, the center of
the bearing is pressed against the
shortened center spacer, and the
bearing outer is pressed against the
machined land of the center hub.
With “good” parts, the bearing is in
perfect alignment. But with a shortened center spacer, the center of
the bearing is forced too far inward,
causing the bearing to run curved.
Since a ball bearing is designed to
operate perfectly straight, operating with a forced curve greatly
decreases the operational life of the
bearing. So, what you need to do is
replace the center bearing spacer,
P/N 1PE-25317-00-00, and then your
choice of new bearings and seals. In
the future, check the swingarm for
any play regularly and replace the
bearings when play is detected, thus
saving the center bearing spacer.
TO PRE-WASH OR NOT TO
PRE-WASH, THAT IS THE
I have a four-seat RZR, and I have
heard that you must pre-wash a
new belt before installing, yet some
people say never do that. So, Boss,
should I or shouldn’t I? And, what is
the correct way to install and break
in a new drive belt?
Baldwin City, KS
Actually, son, both are right! It just
depends on the brand of CVT belt.
Factory OEM belts are coated with
a mold-release agent that must be
washed off before being put into ser-
vice. Gates belts are released from
the molds with steam, so no mold-
release agent is used and cleaning
is not necessary, nor recommended.
All that is necessary is to just clean
the sheaves of all rubber residues
before installing the new belt. For an
OEM belt, give it a bath with Dawn,
hot water and a brush. Rinse and
dry completely. Clean the sheaves
with rubbing alcohol and a paper
towel, install the new belt and oper-
ate the machine below 30 mph for
about 20 minutes, then let the belt
cool completely. Repeat the process
one more time, and then your belt is
ready for full throttle and a lifetime
CAST OR FORGED PISTONS IN A
I need 68mm pistons for my
Banshee rebuild and am looking at
both cast and forged pistons. Is the
extra $60 a piston for forged worth
it on the trail and occasional dune
Silver Lake, MI
Well, if you are from Silver Lake,
I doubt you only occasionally ride
the dunes! Since you really didn’t
state whether you just ride the dunes
or actually race up Test Hill, so I
will only answer in generalities. A
cast piston is lighter and less strong.
Forged pistons are more dense and
stronger. Cast pistons expand less
than forged pistons during warm-up.
Factory pistons are cast. Cast pistons
break in faster than forged pistons.
Performance aftermarket pistons
are usually forged. Forged pistons
must be heat-cycled to relieve manufacturing stresses before reliable
full power can be extracted. Stock
or slightly modified engines can
survive just fine with cast pistons.
A built engine for Comp Hill usually is happier with forged pistons.
Even occasional racing up Comp
Hill doesn’t require the more expensive forged pistons. I have either
totally confused you or accidentally
answered your question! ❏
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