Have you ever bought a bike and the first thing you do is start the engine and the kickstarter is a floppy mess held in place with a rubber band? It gives you a really bad first impression. When we were shopping for any 78-80 Honda
CR250 we discovered they all had this floppy kickstarter ailment. A little research revealed you could replace the kicker with a newer item from a forward-kick Honda ATV. This would be nice, however we wanted to keep the bike original and it’s always fun to fix your own stuff and save a bit of money. The first thing we did was remove the circlip and push the pin that connects the aluminum kicker to the steel pivot piece. The aluminum kicker looked good on top with a nice round hole to push the pin through. Unfortunately, the bottom hole was badly worn and elongated. The steel pivot piece also featured an elongated hole and the material was so thin it was going to be difficult to drill out and install a bushing without ruining the whole thing.
We decided to run a bead of weld on along the length of the steel pivot and then we would just use a dremel to reshape the hole for the pin. The aluminum kicker was a lot thicker and the bottom hole was drilled larger to remove the elongated opening and a bushing was installed. (If you ever need bronze bushings a quick trip to Ace hardware will give you a great selection and you can cut and grind the bushing to the correct length for mere pennies) The next thing we did was polish all the knicks and scratches out of the kicker to make it look new again. We also put a coat of cast iron paint on the steel pivot to make it look new and keep it from rusting. The stock spring inside the kickstater was packed full of dirt and grease and was damaged. We found another spring in an old kickstarter and was able to
install it in our CR250 kicker. Remember you want to remove all the dirt
and grease from the spring. We like to use a little bit of oil or lithium grease on the spring. If the spring is packed full, it can’t expand and contract properly to make your kicker “click” into place. Finally, the two kickstarter pieces were assembled. The pin was slightly bent and that was fixed with a quick hit of a hammer. The pin was inserted and our once floppy kicker was ready for action once again.