Many restorers insist that building Honda s600 engines may take several years to complete. I can tell you they do not know what they are doing or not giving your project the time it deserves. Restoration suits a particular breed of mechanical artist, they are meticulous, they are analaytical, they are smart in decisions. Once you have found a potential restorer, based on reputation or references, look around their shop, is it clean and organized, or are there boxes of unfinished and partial projects and parts everywhere? Are parts labelled, bagged and tagged. Disassembled engines in progress should be broken down into bins, labelled with engine serial numbers and sub assemebly names, every sub assembly, every part, every fastener should be bagged and tagged and labelled. That is why Sharpies and zip lock bags were invented. If your potential candidate restorer is not doing this, walk away.
Before you engage a restorer, ask the restorer to see an in progress engine to explain the process to you. Bad restoration can cost you thousands of dollars in lost parts, damaged rare castings, and imporper cleaning and assembly. Be very cautious of restorers who use restoration to keep there mechanics busy between oil changes, they don't care about your restoration, they are not qualified to touch your engine, and the mechanics most likely have little or no training in engine restoration. Would you want your engine to be used to train?
A restoratin shop MUST be clean and organized. You should be able to walk in to the restorers shop and locate your engine and parts instantly, after all it is your investment they are working on. Honda s parts are rare and difficult to replace. If the general public can walk in and out of the restoration shop what stops your parts from becoming souvenirs? If parts are strewn everywhere, what prevents a mechanic from throwing your precious OEM fasteners away with the pile of used oil filters? If multiple projects are going on, how do you know a rush project does not borrow parts from your bench? The shop shold treat your project as an investment, your investment into the Honda s engine, and their investment into reputation.
JP did the restoration on Chatham engine in just over three months working part time. He supplied almost all of the photos on these pages, he kept me informed and involved every step of the way. Problems became solutions, decisions that impacted budget were discussed, and the engine turned out to be a jewel. Thanks JP for doing a super job on the Chatham engine.
Arrival in JP's Shop: March 29, 2012
Completion of Engine: July 3, 2012
Elapsed build time: 3 months 5 days
Suppliers: Ortmann, CMSnl, Eurasia, Spread-tool, private
The installation of the crank into the block is very peculiar for the Honda s600. The later s800 had a slight conical shape in the liner to make this process a little more tolerant to the level of skill of the mechanic. The s600 requires a high degree of skill, and finess to put the crankshaft into place.
All parts have been cleaned and prepped for the assembly. Ring end gaps are set based on the bore size. The rear liner had a small amount of play and was stabilized prior to the assembly
All items are test fitted to ensure assembly will run flawlessly.
The crank is assembled and new oversized pistons and rings attached, here a ring is used to compress the rings for assembly into the block.
The classical assembly of the crank shaft into the block is with a pair of scissor jacks, allowing a controlled of two pistons at a time into the liner. THis takes some finess as the compressed rings have to be guided into the liners.
I had purchased several starter clutches and had several starter motors from my spares collection, so I had a choice in parts. The starter motor did not need to be rebuilt, and several of the starter clutches were functional, so we chose the best.
Typically the starter clutch, pins and often the face plate receive wear, I have borrowed these photos from John to look at the pices of the starter clutch:
Spare parts are available from Ortmann, Eurasia and Spread-tool. There are size differences to these pieces depending on the production time of the engine, but the following links will give you a start to finiding the spares.
Starter clutch roller bearings lat type: http://eurasia.cart.fc2.com/ca16/277/p-r16-s/
Starting clutch plate: http://eurasia.cart.fc2.com/ca16/199/p-r16-s/
Roller and springs: http://eurasia.cart.fc2.com/ca16/195/p-r16-s/