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Motorcycle-Era |OT| Two are better than four

Oct 28, 2017
42
Brought my Speed Triple back home from winter storage today, hadn't seen the bike for almost 5 months.

I was expecting to need a new battery since I didn't have it on a battery tender but when I went to put it on a charger last night it was nearly full in less than a minute, I think the previous owner put a new battery on it before I bought it and the fact that it was in a warm and dry storage all winter helped (I had it in my friends dad's workshop, sitting under a cover next to the break room coffee table, haha)

Now I need to figure out how to put a new chain rubbing strip on the rear fork, do an oil and filter change and install the heated grips I bought a few months ago, then I'm ready start the season when the weather isn't wet, cold and miserable.

Managed to get a crazy good deal on a chain and sprocket kit too, 50eur for a 180eur kit. Didn't really need a new chain or sprockets but I figured why not get one ready for a price like that.
 
Oct 27, 2017
31
Haha, yes. It's definitely an "acquired taste". Once you swing a leg and start riding though, it feels less like a bike and more like Goku's flying nimbus.
Oh I would love to ride one, one day, but you don't see them much around Europe.

That said my R1200C also seems to be somewhat an acquired taste, I love the way it looks, but so many folk pull a face up to it... Different strokes I guess.

As an aside, we should get more photos in here as everyone in colder climes start riding again...

Edit: I'll start, rode down to the beach a couple of weeks ago...

 
Brought my Speed Triple back home from winter storage today, hadn't seen the bike for almost 5 months.

I was expecting to need a new battery since I didn't have it on a battery tender but when I went to put it on a charger last night it was nearly full in less than a minute, I think the previous owner put a new battery on it before I bought it and the fact that it was in a warm and dry storage all winter helped (I had it in my friends dad's workshop, sitting under a cover next to the break room coffee table, haha)

Now I need to figure out how to put a new chain rubbing strip on the rear fork, do an oil and filter change and install the heated grips I bought a few months ago, then I'm ready start the season when the weather isn't wet, cold and miserable.

Managed to get a crazy good deal on a chain and sprocket kit too, 50eur for a 180eur kit. Didn't really need a new chain or sprockets but I figured why not get one ready for a price like that.
I've got to tell you man, I don't miss chain and sprockets.

Oh I would love to ride one, one day, but you don't see them much around Europe.

That said my R1200C also seems to be somewhat an acquired taste, I love the way it looks, but so many folk pull a face up to it... Different strokes I guess.

As an aside, we should get more photos in here as everyone in colder climes start riding again...

Edit: I'll start, rode down to the beach a couple of weeks ago...

Yes, waiting for the pictures, I know there's a Ducati Monster in here somewhere...

I remember your bike, you first posted it on your first post made here. Is your clutch hydraulic btw?
 
Oct 27, 2017
31
Ah nice, was that when we had spring in February?
Indeed it was, also went with my wife up to Amsterdam for a couple of days, she so rarely rides pillion it's always a treat to get away on the bike just the two of us.

I've got to tell you man, I don't miss chain and sprockets.

I remember your bike, you first posted it on your first post made here. Is your clutch hydraulic btw?
Agreed, I'll never go back to a chain. Clutch is hydraulic, yeah. Dry.
 
Oct 27, 2017
1,342
Don't worry Microsoft, I love it!

But then I also love that R1200C Moogrose. Pity they're rare as hell in the UK and priced to match.

The Ducati is sleeping on account of the fact I've only just got back from holiday. But not for much longer..
 
Oct 28, 2017
42
Did the oil and filter change on the speedy and took a short ride to start the 2019 riding season ;)

Was around +5 C but I enjoyed every second of it, can't wait for the roads to get cleared of all the sand and some warmer weather.

 
Did the oil and filter change on the speedy and took a short ride to start the 2019 riding season ;)

Was around +5 C but I enjoyed every second of it, can't wait for the roads to get cleared of all the sand and some warmer weather.
Nice! Good to see pictures are starting to come around :)

Also, I wonder how I end up in the one place on the internet where the users are mostly not U.S based
 
Oct 28, 2017
42
Installed the Oxford heated grips today, pretty straight forward, even managed to get the old grips off without cutting by blowing pressurized air inside the grips while pulling and twisting. Only thing I had to cut was the throttle tube, it had these small nubs on the outside end that prevented sliding the new grip on.


Going to let the glue dry for at least the 24h as was said in the instructions.
 
Oct 27, 2017
1,342
So looks like there's a place in SFO I can rent a bike at, something like a little Versys for $160/day plus insurance/luggage, or something bigger for nearer 200. Not super cheap, especially if I get one for the Mrs too

But I think I'll only be in the city for work really one weekend. It seems like a waste of an 11-hour flight each way not to take some time afterwards. Anyone have any ideas what I could do with say... 3 or 4 days, a motorcycle and that area of California?
 
Oct 30, 2017
1,561
And another S1 Lightning restoration update.

New swingarm:


New coat of paint for the isolator bolts:

New isolators (they look kinda rough, but they are new. These things isolate the vibrations from the engine):


Clean + grease the rear axle:

New belt on and cleaned rear wheel + new tire in:


Cleaning the headstock bearings:

New and improved front motor mount:

After 45 minutes of fiddling, the intake manifold back on:


That was Friday. After that, on Sunday, we spent the entire day on maneuvering the frame back in place:




Still a lot of stuff left to do... Slowly, but surely however, we seem to be getting there.
 
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Oct 27, 2017
2,498
Nashville
Hey all, glad there's a bike community here.

I have no bike experience at all, yet I signed up for a 7 day charity mini bike ride later in the fall. I'll just channel my grandparents who spent part of their 40s and 50s driving around Europe in a motorcycle with a sidecar.

As I start preparing, I hope I can get some advice from the community here.
https://www.theadventurists.com/adventures/monkey-run-romania/
 
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Oct 28, 2017
42
Hey all, glad there's a bike community here.

I have no bike experience at all, yet I signed up for a 7 day charity mini bike ride later in the fall. I'll just channel my grandparents who spend part of the 50s driving around Europe in a motorcycle with a sidecar.

As I start preparing, I hope I can get some advice from the community here.
https://www.theadventurists.com/adventures/monkey-run-romania/
Welcome! feel free to ask us anything :)

Also, wow, that event looks like so much fun, bucketlist worthy even. Definitely going to keep it in mind for upcoming summers.


EDIT: I couldn't wait any longer and took a 100km ride in +5c to test out the heated grips and I'm impressed, everything but my fingers were frozen, lol. I can already tell it's going to be hard to go back to regular grips if I need to some day. I was wearing my Alpinestars GP Plus gloves (basically sporty summer gloves) but the grips kept my hands warm even at 75% power around 80-120km/h speeds so 5/5 stars from me. 80eur well spent.
 
Oct 27, 2017
1,164
Looking good Fallout-NL

Just insured the Firebolt and NC30- £218 for the year fully comp., no voluntary excess and protected no claims, breakdown cover, etc.
Getting old is pretty alright :/
 
Fallout-NL, I bet the thing is going to run as good as new. Amazing work.

So looks like there's a place in SFO I can rent a bike at, something like a little Versys for $160/day plus insurance/luggage, or something bigger for nearer 200. Not super cheap, especially if I get one for the Mrs too

But I think I'll only be in the city for work really one weekend. It seems like a waste of an 11-hour flight each way not to take some time afterwards. Anyone have any ideas what I could do with say... 3 or 4 days, a motorcycle and that area of California?
I wish I could give you some advice. I honestly never been to that part of Cali before. If I were in your situation, I would definitely take a ride away from the city.
 
Oct 29, 2017
2,041
So looks like there's a place in SFO I can rent a bike at, something like a little Versys for $160/day plus insurance/luggage, or something bigger for nearer 200. Not super cheap, especially if I get one for the Mrs too

But I think I'll only be in the city for work really one weekend. It seems like a waste of an 11-hour flight each way not to take some time afterwards. Anyone have any ideas what I could do with say... 3 or 4 days, a motorcycle and that area of California?
First of all, definitely leave the city. Ride the coast, either way would be a very pretty ride. If you go south you will ride through Santa Cruz, Monterey and Big Sur. If you go north, you could ride all the way up to the Oregon coast depending on how far of a ride you want to take.
 

Ocho

Member
Oct 25, 2017
181
So looks like there's a place in SFO I can rent a bike at, something like a little Versys for $160/day plus insurance/luggage, or something bigger for nearer 200. Not super cheap, especially if I get one for the Mrs too

But I think I'll only be in the city for work really one weekend. It seems like a waste of an 11-hour flight each way not to take some time afterwards. Anyone have any ideas what I could do with say... 3 or 4 days, a motorcycle and that area of California?
Oh man, 3-4 days of California is enough to do a bunch. If you're starting from SFO you may want to head north first then explore the Bay Area and ultimately head south. Unfortunately I wasn't confident enough to explore it all to give you a decent plan, but I know the place you can ask for help: https://bayarearidersforum.com/forums/ I'm sure they'll set you up with a nice route.

I mean, I can easily see 2 days of touring just the Bay Area (there's some awesome roads and mountains just by it). I want to go back and rent a GS and ride with my GF so she can see where it all started.

Oh and here's a nice picture of this weekend's ride:

 
Oct 30, 2017
1,561
The Versys is looking great. Love those wheels.

Just insured the Firebolt and NC30- £218 for the year fully comp., no voluntary excess and protected no claims, breakdown cover, etc.
Getting old is pretty alright :/
Aside from the odd creaky knee joint :P

Looking good Fallout-NL
Fallout-NL, I bet the thing is going to run as good as new. Amazing work.
Thanks guys.

Dougald I also vote for Highway 1. Probably north from where you are if that takes you past Big Sur and places like that. It's been a while, but I remember it being nice (and fairly curvy) all the way to Oregon.
 
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args

Member
Oct 28, 2017
1,831
took the MSF course over the weekend. sat on a rebel for the course. now i'm seriously considering getting a rebel 500 for my first bike. i love its look.

i'm also pretty short. i never realized that'd affect the feel of a motorcycle. it feels awkward to sit on a ninja 400 or 650 and be on my toes (though it was alright compared to some other bikes i sat on). i don't have the confidence to start on a bike and not have my feet planted on the ground when stopped. the rebel 500 has a very short seat height. i do wish the rebel had a less stiff or configurable-stiffness clutch (like the ninjas i tried).

also, i remember i tried mounting a honda cbr-something and just couldn't get my damn leg around the back of the motorcycle to hop on. am i mounting wrong? the back of the motorcycle extends so long. i'm not flexible...

i need to get gear. i hit up a shop on a couple days ago, and they recommended me some helmets that were like five hundred bucks. i still have more research to do here, but anyone got suggestions for good starter gear like helmet, suit, boots, and so on? my budget's <= $1000 for gear (but less is always better).
 
Oct 27, 2017
1,342
RST make some very nice midrange gear, take a look

I also feel your pain about being challenged on the inside leg department. All I can say is you'll eventually get used to shifting your body over, stopping with one foot, and scanning the camber of the road. Thick soles also help

Or buy a cruiser and never worry about it if that's your thing. Unfortunately I will be forever attracted to the taller bikes
 
Oct 29, 2017
2,041
took the MSF course over the weekend. sat on a rebel for the course. now i'm seriously considering getting a rebel 500 for my first bike. i love its look.

i'm also pretty short. i never realized that'd affect the feel of a motorcycle. it feels awkward to sit on a ninja 400 or 650 and be on my toes (though it was alright compared to some other bikes i sat on). i don't have the confidence to start on a bike and not have my feet planted on the ground when stopped. the rebel 500 has a very short seat height. i do wish the rebel had a less stiff or configurable-stiffness clutch (like the ninjas i tried).

also, i remember i tried mounting a honda cbr-something and just couldn't get my damn leg around the back of the motorcycle to hop on. am i mounting wrong? the back of the motorcycle extends so long. i'm not flexible...

i need to get gear. i hit up a shop on a couple days ago, and they recommended me some helmets that were like five hundred bucks. i still have more research to do here, but anyone got suggestions for good starter gear like helmet, suit, boots, and so on? my budget's <= $1000 for gear (but less is always better).

Congrats on completing the course! You can pick up a very decent Scorpion helmet thats DOT and SNELL certified for $150 (R430 is the model I think). Also there are some nicer Bell helmets that always seem to be on closeout. As for jackets and pants, go leather preferably. Look for stuff that has CE level certified armor. Boots, get something that covers your ankle at the very least.

Since you are short, you might have some good luck on closeouts; the common sizes always sell pretty quickly but the oddball small or super large sizes seem to hang around for years and you can get some absolutely killer gear for dirt cheap. My GF just bought the women's version of my $470 jacket for $150!

Good sites to check for deals on gear:

2Wheel.com (when you add parts to the cart, there should be a window that pops up asking if you need asistance..ask for a discount)
Motorcyclecloseouts.com
Motorcyclegear.com
RevZilla.com
 
Oct 28, 2017
681
Good recs from HfL (although it rains far too much where I am so all my gear is synthetic/waterproof). For helmets I started with an HJC CL17, very affordable, which I bought specifically to take the MSF. Later upgraded to a Shoei RF1200, which is night and day different in feel and noise. You get what you pay for, but no shame in upgrading over time. I bought cheaper Olympia gear when I started, and then over time acquired nicer pieces of A* equipment on clearance/closeout.
 
Oct 27, 2017
1,342
HJC are my favourite for helmets on the cheaper side too

Don't buy a Shoei or Arai unless you're prepared to never buy anything else. Comfort on another level
 
Oct 30, 2017
1,561
I've been a Shoei fan ever since seeing their logo on Kaneda's bike in Akira.

What's funny is that no one ever bothers to wear a helmet in that film.
 

args

Member
Oct 28, 2017
1,831
turns out the rf-1200 was one of the helmets they had me try on that i liked. difference is that it was $600 at the store and $400 at motorcyclecloseouts. just ordered it from the latter :)

though this does mean i have to wait a week for the helmet to come in before i can buy and bring back the bike...

need to look for boots, suit, gloves still
 
Oct 27, 2017
1,342
Nice! You'll never buy anything else now though. I started with an Arai Chaser and anything cheaper feels like putting my head in a vice..

Dainese make some wonderful gloves but they're definitely not on the affordable end of things.
 
Oct 31, 2017
40
Finished the MSF course last year. Looking for a first bike to get used to the road on, cruise around town, recreational. i have checked out or considered these.

2017 Yamaha r3 ($3500 local)
2018 KTM 390 Duke ($5600 OTD at dealer, cool design, not as comfortable as others)
Ninja 300/400 (comfortable)
2014 Grom ($1800-$2100 super fun, fitting, more like a toy)

Any thoughts? Thought about the grom first, then moving up when i'm ready.
 
Oct 27, 2017
1,342
Cant go wrong with the Kawasaki or the Yamaha, imo. The Grom is awesome but if you're planning to get one as a 'trade up later' bike you wont keep it very long.

If money is no object get the KTM, though. Easily the coolest but damn if it isn't a lot of money for a small bike
 
Oct 30, 2017
1,561
For 5600 dollars you can probably also start looking at used Monster 696 or 796 models that are in good shape. When used responsibly, those are good bikes to start on as well. Power comes on predictably, not intimidating. Full sized tires and brakes. Reasonably well equipped in terms of suspension.

Out of those three I would go for either the Ninja 400 or the KTM. Grom is too small to hold on for long, better suited as a second bike to mess around on. The Yamaha I recall being a bit more noticeably budget as opposed to the Kawasaki and the KTM. That's from reviews, not personal experience though.

Your best bet is always to try them for yourself if possible.
 
Oct 28, 2017
681
Got all the bikes out yesterday. Tire pressure, batteries reinstalled, chains cleaned and lubed. Everything started up first time, which was quite nice. Took them all for 15 mile test rides this morning, no issues. Guess I'll change the oil on all of them next weekend.

The custom tent/garage thing I built worked well to give us more space in the garage over winter, but it seems to have turned into a greenhouse as the ground started to thaw. Could see moisture had dripped onto the bikes and then dried--those little white mineral stains all over. They'll need a proper washing when it gets a little warmer. And the chains were a mess, thin layer of rust all over them. Nothing you can't clean off with some solution and a nylon bristle brush, but annoying all the same. Should have a proper barn for next winter, hopefully I can get rid of the tent.
 
Oct 30, 2017
1,561
Ah nice, always good to take them out that first time in the year. I had similar problems with storing my bikes. I do have a garage now, but there were huge gaps in the walls were the garage connected to the house. All sorts of crap and sand blew in through there. Covering the bikes in dirt. Recently took the trouble to close the gaps using a silicone kit. Hell of a job, but I think I'm already seeing a big reduction in dirt in the garage.

Project update. Went from this:


to this:



after an epic 17 hour wrenching session on Saturday. It's starting to look like a bike again.

  • changed the wavey disc for a better looking stock disc (new)
  • fastened all the engine/frame connections
  • cleaned and lubricated the head stock bearings
  • installed the front forks and wheel
  • cleaned out the oil tank and cleaned all the plugs, buttoned them back up with liquid sealant
  • cut new oil lines and routed them, installed the oil pump
  • front shock mount back on, installed the refurbished AST rear shock
  • back on its own two wheels!
More pics here:

front isolator

rear isolator

front, top and rear tie bars fixed (look at that nicely painted bracket)

wavey disc versus stock disc

head stock bearings (these were basically all sand previously)

top bearing back in

back when WP wasn't KTM owned yet

newly painted head light brackets back on

forks and wheel in

old oil line up top, new one beneath it

while we were at it, we cut a new one for the short oil change line as well

cleaned oil tank with freshly sealed feeds and return ports

back in (this took a long time, there was a gap at the bottom fixture, had to find something to use as a spacer)

went with a few of these (the white rings)

oil pump with new lines

front shock mount and exhaust hanger

one of the more fun parts to install

AST shock installed

result after a long day
 
Oct 27, 2017
1,342
Every year the DVLA prints my bike tax letter about a week before the government budget is set (and they always, always increase motorcycle tax rates), so that by the time I've received my notification to pay I end up owing more than it says on the letter. Bastards.

£91 this year for anything over 600cc.
 
Oct 25, 2017
842
Got all the bikes out yesterday. Tire pressure, batteries reinstalled, chains cleaned and lubed. Everything started up first time, which was quite nice. Took them all for 15 mile test rides this morning, no issues. Guess I'll change the oil on all of them next weekend.
I’ve always been one of those people who ride even during the winter, so I never really winterize my bikes. If the roads get too messy for an extended period then I might put the tender on for a bit, but it rarely gets used.

I’ve rode almost a thousand miles in the past two weeks, feels good. Soon time for an oil change actually, it will be the first one I do myself on the new Goldwing. I’ve only been changing the oil on Harleys for the past 25 years so I’m looking forward to it, lol!