The Breva lives! Some months back I detected a strange noise coming from my ’07 Breva 1100. By the time I arrived home, it was so loud that my neighbor came out to see what it was. I was unsure if it was the CARC or maybe the alternator. I freighted the bike up to Moto Moda in Bungendore. Then Michael had his accident and Peter Roper was in North America, so the bike languished for a time. Finally, Roper determined that it was the CARC but not the wheel bearing. Something deeper. It was not cost effective to break open the CARC, for which parts and spacers are hard to get, to repair it when secondhand ones were readily available. Peter and Jude brought the Breva back to Bright for the cost of a tank of diesel, overnight accommodation and a few pints. They like visiting Bright, they said. Lucky me.
I’d forgotten how enjoyable the big Breva is — that comfortable seat and sitting position, its mile-munching, loping motor with the Beetle map, its touring capacity, its crap rear brake.
Crap rear brake? It felt crappier than I remembered. Upon parking the Guzzi in the shed I saw the tell-tale signs of a leaking CARC seal with oil splatters on the wheel rim. Yanked off the wheel and there was oil on the seal and brake rotor.
Spoke to Peter and a few bods at the Spag who all seemed to think that, if I could replace fork seals, I’d be capable of replacing the wheel bearing seal. One Tuesday I ordered the seal from Mario at Thunderbikes in Perth and it arrived in Bright at midday the following day. Wow!
Removing the CARC to the work bench, I couldn’t get the old seal out; had to resort to a technique that I’d only read about. Using my trusty drill, I attempted to screw a self-tapper into the old seal. It wouldn’t go in! That Viton seal is hard. I didn’t want to rev the drill any faster for fear of drilling into the bearing beneath. Selecting my smallest drill bit, I drilled a pilot hole. That self-tapper then slipped in as if into butter. Grasping the screw with pliers, I easily levered the seal out.
A smear of grease on the new seal, I tapped it in with a mallet, using a piece of wood to keep it flush with the housing. Reassembled the bike, added Penrite 80W-90 to the rear drive, and went for a fang. A fortnight later, no leak! I hadn’t realized what a simple system it was.