Wednesday, 9 March 2011

The damage done

So I thought as I was taking bits and pieces off the bike it would be easier to sort out the blowing exhaust at the same time. Or so I thought. In order to get to the exhaust manifold and get the old exhaust off and the new one on I had to remove the radiator. Once I had done that I found out that the rattle that I had thought was internal was actually external as one of the pipe collars had broken. Getting the manifold studs out wasn't too tough and the new ones went in fine, the new downpipes looked great when they were on.

Saturday, 1 January 2011

New Years Eve Blues

As I have done a few times before I went into London for NYE for this year to see a mate and also go out to a club to celebrate the new year in. As usual I rode my bike into London and parked in the usual spot as I had done a dozen times before. When I walked past with my mate and his girlfriend heading for the club five hours later, the bike was on it's side in the bike parking bay, clutch lever, indicators and screen all broken and that was just the obvious stuff. Not a great way to start the new year but I didn't let it stop me having a good night out after my mate had helped me get the bike back up on the side stand. After thinking about it for a bit I think a car had reversed into it, whether the driver had been pissed or not I don't know but it was certainly some crap driving. It's a busy street so they musn't have either cared or realised. I reported it to the police but didn't think anything would come of it. New Years Day saw me riding back from London in an RAC van thinking of how long it would take me to fix all the bits and get it back on the road.

Saturday, 6 March 2010

Front calipers and pads

It must have been all the riding through winter that had worn my pads down so much, i had popped them out as I thought they were rattling a little and was going to grease the backs to try and help them out a bit when I saw how much pad was left I was a bit surprised:

Admittedly the second pad along still had groves on it...

So I thought "that's no problem, i'll just whack some new pads in and off we go". Ah no. Again when I came to do anything it's all seized. The cylinders in the calipers wouldn't move back far enough to let a new pad in on any of the sides. When I got the calipers off I could see why.

I was surprised that they had been working at all. It took me a few hours to work the cylinders out and then to sand them and clean them up, get them all back together with the new pads in, back onto the bike and bled. It was like doing the rear caliper last year only 12 times over. Hopefully that would be it for another year.

Thursday, 31 December 2009

And a merry xmas to you too.

So it turned out to be the coldest winter in 30 years and I was in some of the heaviest snow fall in that winter. I missed some of it by a day or two but when I got up to Scotland for the wedding I was caught in the middle of it. Lovely scenery for the photos but not for me. When I got out to the bike in the morning after the wedding it was under about a foot of snow. When I got back I wrote into Superbike magazine to tell then about the long trip including a photo, lo and behold they printed my letter in the mag!

The trip was the longest I have done so far through the worst weather I have been through. Temparatures were down to below freezing, wind chill on the bike was below -20 on some days, meaning I could only do about 50 miles at a time without stopping. The snow at the wedding meant I got blocked in and had to go to Edinburgh and then Glasgow to get onto the motorway, between the scottish cities is where I couldn't stop due to solid ice on the road and had to ditch in the snow bank in the slow lane. Even with a clear motorway later on, service stations were a nightmare as there was solid compacted snow, slush or holes and the front wheel was all over the place. By the time I got to Wales I was really tired and overall my 10 days off didn't feel like much of a break. Still it proves i'm not a fair weather rider...

Monday, 7 December 2009

Reasons to be thankful

It has been a while since I last wrote something, I haven't had much wrong with the girl for a while *touches wood*. I have however been clocking up the miles and have just passed 34,000 miles. Considering when I bought the bike she had only done just over 20,000 I think I can safely say that I have used it more than any other owner. Now it's in the middle of winter you would think I would be taking things easy and not clocking up the miles, oh no, not me, I have a 1000 mile trip planned for this xmas. Ho ho indeed.

The dates aren't accurate just a rough idea. So lets hope there aren't any worn out bits or broken parts waiting to stop me in the middle of nowhere, especially on xmas eve.

Monday, 26 October 2009

A few notes from Dublin

Due to a stag do I found myself heading over to Holyhead and getting the ferry over to Dublin for a couple of nights in the fair city. I was there a day earlier than the rest of the party so had a night on the town on my own to have a look around and chill out as I have been really busy the last few months. The ride there wasn't too bad, setting off was in mist and cold but it soon warmed up and by the time I got into Wales I was making good time and enjoying myself. The roads in North Wales probably aren't that great for cars as there's a lot of normal road with no dual carriage way but for a bike it's great, I ended up getting to Holyhead and the ferry a little early and had a nice crossing over to Dublin. I meant to get a picture of the bike strapped into the ferry but completely forgot in my excitement...

Above was the only bit of "crap" I had all weekend, I parked the bike in the bin/bicycle storage which was open to the sky but more secure than the street. When I got out of the hostel, which in all other respects was really nice and even gave you breakfast (as much toast, fruit juice and coffee/tea as you wanted) and there was a nice American guy in my dorm that had nasty feet but was really interested in what I was up to, I found the above on my seat. It was wet. It was green. It soaked through toilet paper like no pooh should.

After cleaning my seat I was off to the airport to meet the guys (everyone else had got the plane, wusses), Karting and then much guinessness into the small hours. Was a very cool, if expensive, weekend. The ride back was not so great and much of it in the dark once I got off the ferry but I couldn't really complain for this time of year.

Sunday, 2 August 2009

Hated rust

I have been looking down at my clocks since I got the bike thinking that there was an ugly bit of rust there spoiling things, I finally got around to getting the clocks off and then the bracket, giving it a quick rub down and spray and then popping it back on. It does look a lot nicer but it's just making me want to sort out more of the bad bits, it will end up with a complete respray I can see it coming.