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Don't Ask


By Rick Sieman and Matt Cuddy



If you choose to email a question to this forum, then you must conduct yourself accordingly. Therefore, the following rules are in order:

1. Do not write your email to me IN CAPS. If you do so, I will print out your question and do terrible things to it.

2. Do not request a personal email response. Since I get thousands of questions each month, trying to answer them all would cut deeply into my leisure time, which I value more than your current state of confusion.

3. Try to spell at least in a semi-correct fashion. If you choose to mangle the English language, expect no mercy from this quarter. You might be mocked severely.

4. Do not ask for me to send you copies of my many manuals and literature. I am not in the library business, nor do I want to spend the bulk of my day at the copy machine just because you're too lazy to ask your dealer, or look around a bit.

5. Don't bother me with truly stupid questions, like how to get 50 more horsepower for a buck and a half

6. Now that you know the rules, think carefully and have at it!

Oh yes … I’ll leave your email unedited, for what it’s worth.

(NOTES:  Since this is the first of the new DON’T ASK features, I have included a few of the previous emails that have run  in the past. If you’d like to ask a question or post a comment, the mailing address is:  superhunky@gmail.com)




Dear Rick,

You probably won't remember me, because we have never met, but have bought "Monkey Butt", a whole bunch of CD'S, and your Barstow to Vegas poster. I've probably read "Monkey Butt" 3 times, and the way the country is turning, you could be called "Super Prophet" also.




Mine is a super stupid question. I have some old Suzuki's I plan to restore this winter, and was wondering how hard it is to change engine seals. I have a 1974 TM125 that I'm having bored, a RV125 that seems to drain the gas tank after a month, that the carb was rebuilt (1900 miles), and a GT185 that was given to me by a friend.


I thought I would just do them all. I've read on "Don't Ask", that it is very important thing to do on a 2 cycle.


I have changed tranny seals in my VW Thing and hope it will be that easy. I also would appreciate any advice on the type of flywheel puller that will be required.


Rick, just remember, 50 is the new 30 (I qualify), 60, is 40 and 70 is 50. I'll race anytime and you would kick my a**.


Thanks for the Memories,



P.S. Sorry the spell check don't work on my Outlook Express, so this is done from a 52 year olds memory. Please forgive the typos.



Changing seals is not that hard.  Just make sure you have a manual to help you through the process.  There’s no mystery.






Hello Rick
I had recently come across you're website. I had a question if you didn't mind taking the time to answer....I once owned a 1989 RMX 250, i loved it, i've always been a sucker for the old bikes...but never had much luck with them. I decided to cut my losses when the motor went, the swing arm barings were shot, the rear spring was shot, now i have a 2006 CR 250 R, everything's tight, runs like a top with power to spare.  When my motor blew on my rmx it had sat for a few years before i let her go, when i bought the cr during winter months, i was wondering if running it in these colder temperatures would do any damage?

Brian Hermansen



Actually, unless the bike sat outside in the cold weather, the temp wouldn't
hurt it at all.  Just make sure you change the tranny oil and re-do the air filter.  Also, if the bike sat on the tires, you might have an imbalance for a while.






Hello SH,

I've been following your column on "Dont Ask". Absolutely one of the best out there..Keep on kickin' the Illiterate's in the a$$, (I'll bet I spelled that wrong) we all need that now and then. You had replied to an earlier question that I had on Yamaha IT vs YZ and compatability.


Your reply was that alot of YZ parts would work on the IT model. Well, I have a 1977-78 IT175 that is in amazing condition, and it's because of this that I really want to do a resto as oppposed to the Ebay parting out scene.

The bad things started upon removing the clutch and motor sidecovers and finding an incredible amount of slop and play in the crank shaft main bearing area.




Upon splitting the cases I found that someone had manufactured (CNC,cast mold,???) an insert in the main bearing pockets. Maybe Yamaha did this (I doubt it for cost sake) but it's way beyond anything I've ever seen and need some real "expert advice" on this one. I can send a few pics if you accept them,


Anyway, accepting the fact that my cases are toast,  I'm having one hell of a time finding replacement cases, and have been researching the net to see if any other model/year cases would fit my tranny and cylinder.

My $52,000 dollar question is what replacement cases will work for my bike?


I actually had the bike running before I knew of the serious lower end condition, and the damn thing ripped!!! So I'm determined to fix this one, even if a few of my elsinores have to wait.


Looking forward to your reply, (DESPERATELY, no one wants to touch this one).


Thanks for all of your contributions to the vintage MX world,




I talked with Matt Cuddy about your cases.  Here's his reply:

This guy's pixilated. There are steel bearing sleeves in the lower end of an IT, stock. Cast in. Just think, if someone DID slap together some inserts, that would mean either the cases were shot, or the mains were the wrong size. Kind of impossible.






1. A day without sunshine is like night.

2. On the other hand, you have different fingers.

3. 42.7 percent of all statistics are made up on the spot.

4. 99 percent of Real Estate Agents give the rest a bad name.

5. Remember, half the people you know are below average.

6. He who laughs last, thinks slowest.

7. Depression is merely anger without enthusiasm.

8. The early bird may get the worm, but the second mouse gets the
cheese in the trap.

9. Support bacteria. They're the only culture some people have.

10. A clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.

11. Change is inevitable, except from vending machines.

12. If you think nobody cares, try missing a couple of payments.

13. How many of you believe in psycho-kinesis? Raise my hand.

14. OK, so what's the speed of dark?

15. When everything is coming your way, you're in the wrong lane.

16. Hard work pays off in the future. Laziness pays off now.

17. How much deeper would the ocean be without sponges?

18. Eagles may soar, but weasels don't get sucked into jet engines.

19. What happens if you get scared half to death, twice?

20. Why do psychics have to ask you your name?

21. Inside every older person is a younger person wondering, what the
heck happened?'

22. Just remember -- if the world didn't suck, we would all fall off.

23. Light travels faster than sound. That's why some people appear
bright until you hear them speak.

24. Life isn't like a box of chocolates it's more like a jar of
jalapenos. What you do today, might burn your butt tomorrow.

25. When you have a friend tried and true, Screw that friend before he
screws you.


Pat Chicas

Las Vegas, NV



Good stuff Pat.  We’ll pass it on to the readers.





Finally getting around to getting the stuff that I tried to get last Christmas. Doubly good this season – make another old geezer happy by putting  his beer drinking, heavy smoking moto-x hero back up on the garage wall after 3 or 4 decades and put a dollar or two in your pocket. ang in there dude – us old farts gotta keep puttin’ on the show for the kids.

Husky Varmit

AKA R. Bayne

NOTE: It was George over at Uptite Husky that reminded me I needed to spend some bucks with you. You came up as part of the conversation about the old farts we used to race with back in the 70’s – not nearly enough of us left!!!!

Side note #2: The world still has a sense of humor – I was wading through my weekly reading of legislative and treatment updates a couple of weeks ago when I started to delete a study on pediatric under-insurance. Then it jumped off the screen and nailed me right between the eyes – the author was one Dr. Peter Szilagyi. Not exactly a common name in this country. I literally had to hit Google to make sure that Pete was still writing for the Austin paper and hadn’t gone totally crazy in the 15 years or so since I had seen him.

Robert S. Bayne

Corpus Christi, Texas


Wow, your e-mail sure brought back some memories. I'm glad to hear that Utight Husky is still around. They were good people back in the day.  Yup, Pete Sz is still around and probably as weird as ever.





Have you seen this? It was sent to me by my father-in-law Gary Johnson. Not that I use that kind of item very often, but when you need it you never seem to have it. Now I'll just make some when I do need it. See Ya at the races.

Machinist's Workshop magazine actually tested penetrates for break out torque on rusted nuts. Significant results! They are below, as forwarded by an ex-student and professional machinist, Bud Baker.

They arranged a subjective test of all the popular penetrates with the control being the torque required to remove the nut from a "scientifically rusted" environment.

*Penetrating oil ..... Average load*
None ..................... 516 pounds
WD-40 .................. 238 pounds
PB Blaster ............. 214 pounds
Liquid Wrench ..... 127 pounds
Kano Kroil ............ 106 pounds
ATF-Acetone mix....53 pounds

The ATF-Acetone mix was a "home brew" mix of 50 - 50 automatic transmission fluid and acetone. Note the "home brew" was better than any commercial product in this one particular test. Our local machinist group mixed up a batch and we all now use it with equally good results. Note also that "Liquid Wrench" is about as good as "Kroil" for about 20% of the price.



Excellent info.  In fact, old ATF saved in a bucket is a great rust remover as is.






Hi Rick,

Kirk Conway from Kansas. I have to tell you everytime see that Triumph of your's, I slave over it, I know that thing sound's really good and I know its got good power too, what kind of frame is that and what kind of forks does it have?


I see thier offset axle on the photo, Did you do anything to the engine? Like different valve's,  or different countershaft? I like the way it looks and the shocks are cool too, I wonder how much it would be to make one like your's,

Im glad your gonna have a nice new column.  Itll be really cool,

I know alot of guy's will be writing in for advice and info, or to just say hello, Im glad you guy's are doing good,

Take it easy ok,




The Triumph is a 650 with a 36mm Mikuni carb.  It started first kick and idled smoothly.  The forks are YZ250 units that have been shortened  by about 2 1/2 inches.  Shocks are (naturally) Works Performance and deliver about 6 1/2 inches of wheel travel.  The motor is stock, as is the gearing.  That saddle is a Bates TT item (rare) and the paint is fire red.  I'm sorry I sold that beast.






HEY u r a real dumb ass **********er  i wote u askin about a problin with my Honda and u gave a smartass answir and dident even answir my question right  so what gives huh  i xpect a answir not to git dissed   &%#%**^%$  u and ur pet

Fast Flyer


Ah, Mister Flyer.  The last I checked, your email was the usual garbled tripe I receive from those with the literacy of a goldfish.  And, if I recall, you were not billed for the advice I gave you.  Keep the change.  And please, do not write again







Dear superhunky,
This book sucks! I should know. I own an autographed copy and am on my 7th. time reading it! I have to be one sick individual! I grew up in Southern California from 1957 to 1973 when I went in the Army. Rode my first dirt bike in '67. Went down hill from there. Bought the first issue of Dirt Bike Magazine with my McDonalds pay. Buy this book and you WILL be sorry. Reading it when you are supposed to be helping the Old Lady around the house and yard. It's an uncurable sickness. SOMEBODY HELP ME! Ask Rick...He knows all about this sickness.





Whoa, reading the book that much is a sign of brain damage.







I need some help. My 'ol lady, Leslie, wants me to seek some serious mental health help. Maybe you can talk to her. It's VERY serious! I actually think I really DO need help. (at least I am not in denial...the first step in getting help) Well, here's my problem. Come to think of it, you may be a big part of my problem! I am reading "Monkey Butt" for probably the 7th. time or so. I know, it is so serious it may be beyond your help. What can be wrong with me? I have dozens and DOZENS of non-fiction books, yet I keep returning to Monkey Butt! HELP!!! (by the way, I DO have two  fiction books: "The Warren Commision Report on the Assasination of J.F.K". and  "Charles Manson: In His Own Words") A response is highly needed before I end up on a tall building with a scoped rifle.
Dave Fruhling

Yet another victim of brain damage.  The only cure is reading the AMA Magazine.  That will put you to sleep in a hurry.







Hi Rick
Hope you're doing well with your health, keep us updated.
I just got through reading your ten worst dirt bikes of all time and it reminded me of an article of I think a Honda dual purpose bike that had the rear end in some mud and it was referenced by DB mag as a pig, which got more press than ever. You didn't mention it here, but do you remember the article?

PS whatever happened to the GYDB truck and I think his name was Pete Szylaggi? Someone once asked how to pronounce his name and DB said peet like the moss.


 That bike was an SL175 Honda and we took a photo of it in a peg pen right next to Dolly The Wonder Pig.  Out of the exhaust pipe of the Honda we had the artist put in an OINK. Honda was not amused.

Pete is working for a paper in Austin, Texas.