New VF owner

Hi all just checking in as I have just purchased a VF1000FF 1986. Been dry stored for 7 years had a new battery and a bit of new fuel and started first press but just lumpy running on 3 so being serviced now. It was VERY cheap so with classic insurance hopefully cheap to run.

It seems in very good nick for the year and I am really looking forward to having some fun with it.

Most bods on the forum seem to have FEs were there any changes to the FF apart from larger front wheel and side panel styling? Does the FF handle better with the 18" front wheel? I guess it is more stable. I have ready the oil flow to the cams was improved. I can find very little out about the FF its only ever mentioned as a step before the F2 so if anyone here can tell me more I would appreciate it.

Welcome to the wonderfull world of Vee 4s.The FF shares more in common with the F2F than the FE.With an 18" front wheel and longer swinging arm than the FE it does have good stability,but I find it requires more input to get it to change direction quickly.The frame differs from the FE as more room was needed for the now wider cylinder head.The engine is the same as the F2F apart from having no oil cooler and the same primary reduction as the FE.The FF and F2F were produced at the same,time with camshafts which run in line bored heads with bearing surfaces almost twice the size as the origional model.Swapping the front sprocket for an 18 tooth one gives you the same final gearing as an F2F which does have the legs on the FE.Teambif took our FE and F2F over to Amsterdam and down to the D day beaches in France.Both bikes behaved impeccably in the 40 degree heat cruised at 95-100 with ease.All in all a very useable classic with a low pricetag.Ride and enjoy,but look after it and you wont loose a penny on it.Best regards BIF.

Cheers Bif for the info. The bike has only 23k miles on the clock and it sounds like the changes to the head should avoid much of the fabled camshaft problems of the earlier design. Do the changes mean the oil feed mod is not required?

Its having a professional full service as its been standing so long but after that I’ll do it myself. I didn’t fancy taking those carbs off and cleaning them as my first job!

I seem to be stuck in a time warp with 80s bikes my last was a gpz900r I guess I am just buying the ones I loved in my youth :wink:

Hi Skullster, good luck with the new VF and you’re right about the 80’s bikes.I used to drool over pictures of VF’s when I was younger but they were way out of my price range and then there was that Suzuki 1100 Katana that I had a poster of on my wall…Mmmm, maybe next project??

Update on the FF brakes need a rebuild as they are sticking (no surprise), One fork seal needs replacing, The collector box is rotten but not yet blowing, The carbs need to be removed for cleaning so need new rubbers to aid re-fitting. Back tyre borderline for MOT hopefully it will pass so I can do the rest in my own time :wink: So could have been much worse on a bike not run for 7 years!

Guess its time to get in line for one of crookys stainless collectors.There are a few of us interested if the price is right.The other stuff is all pretty normal for a bike thats been stood for a while.You going for a full rebuild on the brakes?We had a batch of stainless pistons and slide pins made up a while back and they work well.Our guy still has the program for making them if anyone is in need.Regards BIF

I’m already on the list for Crooky’s collector how much are the pins and pistons?

Also interested in the price for a set!

Last time he charged £35 a set ie two pistons and one pin.Going to see him tomorrow about another job so I will confirm the price over the weekend.BIF

OK update on the FF. Its been at the bike mechs for some time - no rush. Picked it up today and almost fainted at the bill. Its had new fork seals, new front pads, new brake fluids, oil and filter, new throttle slide (inner grip) fork oil and a carb and tank clean. OK the labour was £225 not too bad but got charged £303 for parts! I mean £44 for two fork seal sets, £49 for 2 sets of front brake pads, £58 for 4 carb rubbers and £47 for oil and filter seem excessive to me! Or is it just I am behind the times. Still not running smoothly he put that down to the collector leaking. Off I rode went OK up to 6k then nothing it would not rev any higher acted as if it was starved of fuel.

Got it back and the collector looks in reasonable condition but is blowing a little. Called the man and asked where he got the parts from (some from Dave Silver others Honda) and asked about the lack of power over 6k. Again blamed the collector and said the carbs would need balancing again once the collector had been done. He thought it was rotten on the top. At least the brakes and suspension were good and I really like the riding position. Ordered some Profi Fuel Max as I have friends who say its magic at cleaning fuel systems. We shall see.

I would check the diaphrams are working in the carbs,I had two carbs that had sticking slides on mine after it had stood for 6 yrs.I would have thought even with a blow on the collector it would run past 6k easy enough.

Well just back from the MOT station. The bike failed on only the back tyre - which I was expecting. They checked the exhaust and said it was fine :wink: I tried to get them to price up some Conti road attacks or BT-023s. They said the road attacks were no longer available and had never heard of 23s. ( guess they don’t do many tyres! I had a lecture from the mechanic on how I should not fit a 150 rear as the rim would not be wide enough to fit it properly and it would ruin the handling. They could only quote on a BT45 rear. SO I have 10 working days to take it back for a re MOT no charge in the mean time I’ll price up better tyres from Sticky Jims in Shifnal. Used the Profo fuel max in a half a tank full of fuel and its was run around 15 miles still no power after 5k. Although it seems better at half throttle then just chokes if you give her more of a handful. Certainly looks like slides/diaphragms. Its really annoying I paid for the carbs to be taken off checked and cleaned as well I should have done it myself to start with. At least it has new intake rubbers on so should be easier to do.

Dont put odd size tyres on it or different makes front and rear.It will feellike it has a hinge in the middle.My Bold’or had oversize tyres when i bought it and i changed the pair within a week as it was horrible.It had ME33 front and ME55 on the back but oversize and it was dire.Try the Avon’s like i use they are real good.

May I suggest you check for a choked air filter(you dont say if the dealer did it), and sometimes a kinked fuel hose(or pinched under the tank) can cause fuel starvation, as can a blocked tank vent. Just a few simple bits to check before throwing more cash at it.

Scratcher I think that’s a good plan. It does feel as if once the throttle is opened up there is not enough fuel. If the slides or diaphragms were faulty on one or two carbs I would have thought the revs would still go higher but with less power. Got to re-MOT today then she will be at least legal. Then off with the tank for a good fish about. Thanks everyone for the input!

Originally posted by Skullster

Well just back from the MOT station. The bike failed on only the back tyre - which I was expecting. … I had a lecture from the mechanic on how I should not fit a 150 rear as the rim would not be wide enough to fit it properly and it would ruin the handling. They could only quote on a BT45 rear…

I found a table somewhere in internet, and it allowed to put 150 in 3,5 inch rim. 140 was suggested, and 150 allowed. I have now 150 rear, OK drive, and may be even better when I change the worn front to same brand.

This is not uncommon with bikes that have been stood for a while.One F2F we rebuilt the engine on had been stood for three years before we got to it.Once rebuilt it would not pull above 6000rpm.Carbs were stripped and cleaned with carb cleaner,diaphrams replaced with a known good set and no change.Float levels checked ok as did fuel supply.We then fitted a spare set of carbs and it pulled clean up to the rev limiter.Modern fuel degrades in no time and tends to set in the passageways of the carbs.Ultrasonic cleaning is normaly the answer when carbs are as bad as this.Pekka is spot on too the rims on the FF are more than able to handle 110/80 front and 150/70 rear.Radial tyres are in a different class to crossplys and give a worthwhile improvement even on these old girls.BIF

OK I have found a new place - Pro Bike in Bilston who have quotes £90 for a carb removal, ultrasonic clean and replace and check. Which is excellent value. I’m going to see if I can pop the diaphragm covers off and see if they were pinched on re-fitting ( Pro bike say this is a common problem they see) If they are OK its a clean for them!

I have now fitted a Conti road attack 150/70/17 ZR rear which looks good and was £110 fitted to the bike. Gotta save up for the matching 110/80/18 front nut its already improved the back. Once all is Ok engine wise I’ll fits braided hoses because the brakes, although working fine, are as scary as the ones on my old Laverda mirage with all the weight she carries!

I’ll report back on progress. Cheers

Ask if the guys you found are gonna strip the carbs before cleaning them individually. The nature of the ultrasonic bath is the resonance set up by transducers in the base of the unit is directional and if a bank of carbs are placed in the bath then there is a chance that the cleaning action of this resonance can be reduced by effectively one carb blocking the path of the waves to another. Check out
The guy who wrote this letter knows his onions!!

Update on the FF. The very Excellent people at Pro Bike in Bilston have sonically cleaned the carbs and rebuilt them. They say there were several springs missing and broken parts all now replaced. They say the carbs had not been cleaned as far as they could tell. They have a dyno there and the FF came up with a paltry 32bhp at the wheel :frowning: Although running sweet on low revs anything over 20% caused issues. Found the rear spark plug caps were faulty so replaced, power up to 41bhp. Investigated fuel flow and found the petcock to be 80% restricted by crud. The Fuel filter clogged and the tank a mess. All jobs the previous mechanic said he had done. Awaiting a fuel filter and they are confident it will be up to full power again and will “rip my arms off”. He is providing a report and printouts so I can go back to original mechanic for redress or on to trading standards. They really know what they are taking about and I would like to recommend them for their diligence, work ethic and reasonable prices. Just wish I had gone there first. I’ll ask about setting up a forum users discount :wink: