Archive for the 'Motorcycle' Category

The Final Straw (for the apartment)

Once again I have found damage on the motorcycle. Came home real early this morning from a night out at a friends place and as we pulled in the lights panned across the bike… on the ground, on it’s side. This makes almost exactly one year to the day since the last time the bike was damaged. This time it looks like someone may have actually sat on the bike and tried to move it, judging by how far forward it was when I picked it up. The police officer who came to take the report also feels that was the case. So we aren’t sure if it was a failed attempt at trying to steal it, or just someone being stupid. Either way, there is a good amount of damage. The throttle grip is cracked all the way through the throttle tube along with some scratches to the mirror and floorboards.  This is the final straw for me, it’s time to move, time to get our own place. We’ve been looking for the past few years, but now that we are married I think we really need to get out of here. Well, guess I’ll need to have repairs done.

Another Riding Season Ends

Well my riding season, what little riding I got to do anyway, has officially come to an end. I dropped the bike off at Chuck’s for the winter, and I honestly hope this is the last year I need to store it at his house. While I really appreciate his generosity each year and the rent free space in his pole barn, I would just really like to have my own garage to store it in. Not just so I am not burdening my friend, but also so I can have the bike close so I can take advantage of random nice days late or early in the season. Once again though I didn’t get to ride as much as I would have liked too. I have yet to find a route to work that is motorcycle friendly, which is a huge bummer considering how long the commute is. Perhaps if we can find a house that’s closer and offers a better route…

Repair Estimate’s In

Received the estimate for repairs from Nicholson’s today, and the total cost has come in under the amount of my deductible ($500). On one hand I am happy the damage is not overly extensive, but on the other it is still more than I was hoping to have to pay. It will cost $434.66 to cover the cost of the parts and the labor to carry out the repairs. As part of the work they will be replacing the entire front fender and the covers on the front forks. Luckily there was no damage to the actual forks under the covers. Luckily it won’t take them very long to carry out the repairs, so I will have the bike back in few days. Hopefully I will be able to get some additional riding in before the end of the season.

Damaged Again

Once again I found damage to the motorcycle in my parking lot (the last time was in 2008). This marks the second time the bike has been damaged while parked at home. Looks like I will need to make another claim and get it in for an estimate. This time it looks like a truck with some type of trailer hitch backed into it, more than once even. My first indication was a mark on the cover and a small rip surrounded by a rust imprint. When I removed the cover I found a crack on the front fender and multiple dents in the fork covers, leading me to believe that someone backed into it more than once. Judging by the damage I am truly surprised they did not knock it over again. I am beginning to think more and more that I need to buy a house so I can have my own garage to safely store the bike in.

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Summer Has Begun

Because I finally got the motorcycle back from Nicholson’s from Winter storage. While they had it they replaced my battery because apparently it was not up to par, though they said nothing appears to be wrong with my charging system. As for the fuel gauge they say it’s normal for it to be slightly off, so instead of me spending a bunch of money to have that replaced I am just going to leave it and be mindful. The levers were successfully replaced, however the mirrors were not. Well, technically they were but the new ones were not large enough or high enough and ended up being completely useless. Unfortunately they were not able to refund me the cost of the new mirrors because they could not find the box they originally came in. As such they supplied me with some store credit which I applied toward some winter/cold weather riding gloves that came in very handy on the chilly ride home! I am hoping to have time to do some more riding this year, however, I have a bad feeling that won’t happen due to my new job and the commute that I don’t feel comfortable on the motorcycle on. Regardless, it’s nice to have it back.

Winter Motorcycle Storage, and other work

Brought the motorcycle to Nicholson’s today for them to provide the off season storage. While they have it, in addition to preparing it for winter storage and then preparing for riding season in the spring, I am also going to have a few other items looked into. I still feel like the fuel gauge is not reporting properly, so I am going to have them check into if that needs replacing or not. They will also be checking the battery and charging system as the battery seems to be dying out quickly again. I will also be having some items replaced and upgraded as well. The riser bolts are going to be replaced with stainless steel ones and the rust will be cleaned out, I am also having caps added to the tops of them to keep water out. Once again my brake and clutch levers will be replaced, however this time I am going back to the aluminum ones, seeing as the oils in my skin appear to be eating through the chrome ones. Lastly I am having new mirrors put on, hopefully they will sit a little higher and come out a little further to improve my visibility. The bike should be ready for pick up around mid-April, I just hope the weather is also ready around that time. Additionally Kylie had fun looking around the shop and playing with Melissa on all the different vehicles! This Polaris Ranger was her favorite by far, as it was the perfect size for her.

Leather Levers

Earlier this week I realized the chrome on my levers is flaking off again! I say again because this happened before, though I apparently didn’t write about it. Back in 2009 the levers were replaced as part of a larger overhaul do to some damage and they were replaced with a set of Kuryakyn’s that were supposed to be very good. My 2009 riding season was rather short (due to said service) and everything seemed fine, then came the 2010 riding season and all seemed well. Until mid way through the season, when I swear the levers felt odd. Every time I checked, and others checked for me, they looked fine, so I let it go. But then in the beginning of August while out for a ride it felt like I got a splinter in my finger, when I stopped to check I did have a splinter, a chrome flake splinter! The chrome plating on the lever was indeed peeling off. I ordered some replacement levers from Nicholson’s and waited for them to come in and in the mean time I just rode wearing my full finger gloves. By the time the levers came in the riding season was just about over so I decided to wait to put them on until the 2011 season. Chuck was nice enough to install the new levers for me during the off season and they felt and looked great all season. Now this year I get the motorcycle out, the earliest ever I might add, and after riding it home for the first time I once again feel like the levers are pitting and flaking! When I checked it turns out they are. At this point I am thinking that maybe I just have a high acidic level to the oil in my skin. Maybe? In any event I have decided not to order a third set of levers, instead I have ordered these leather lever covers. I purposely chose these because there are no long tassels, I am personally not a fan of them. So now I need to wait for them to arrive and hopefully they look good when I put them on.

Early Ride and Some Disapointment

Today marks the earliest I have ever been able to get the motorcycle out for the season! Today and the rest of the week are supposed to be beautiful and I am looking forward to being able to ride again. After picking the bike up from Chuck’s and riding home, Melissa and I decided to ride down to Sidetracks for dinner. When we got down there I also did something that I had never done before, I backed the motorcycle into a spot that was part of a line of motorcycles. It was a pretty neat experience to be part of that brotherhood, to look back and see my bike in a line with others. Of course this is also when I had a chance to verify something that I was dreading, the chrome on my levers is flaking and pitting again! I am beginning to suspect that I may just have a high acid level in the oils in my skin. It’s the only sane conclusion I can come to. Not sure what I am going to do at this point, but I really don’t want to replace them again if they are just going to flake again!

Much Needed Ride

So far this summer I feel like I haven’t really had the opportunity to ride the Motorcycle as much as I would like to, either due to unfavorable weather or general life conflicts. Today though we got to take a nice ride out to Melissa’s parents’ house. Round trip it’s about 115 miles, which I know is not really a lot but it is better than nothing. This trip is always a nice one to take on the motorcycle because we ride along a lot of back country roads, so there is typically light traffic and some really nice scenery. My ultimate hope though is to one year be able to go on one of the extended motorcycle trips that my friend Chuck goes on. This year i might have tried to join him if not for work not allowing me the option to join, he will be riding around Lake Michigan with a few other guys, camping along the way. He estimated this trip to be about 1200 miles. That would be one hell of an experience!

First Ride in a Long Time

Finally had time to get back on the motorcycle today! I feel, due to weather and other restrictions, that I am riding less this year than previous years. I hope that changes as the summer goes on. Riding is one of the few things that helps me to relax and de-stress. Looking back, it appears that this is the first ride since April 29th, that’s almost two months! It was real nice to be back on it though and the 68.1 mile ride was very nice. I don’t have a map of this particular trip though, as I honestly do not remember the route I took. I need to save money and get a GPS that allows me to upload map overlays so I will be more easily able to keep track of where I have gone. Putting the maps in by hand (which is what I normally do) is very time consuming and tedious, additionally it becomes a big problem when I don’t remember the full route like today. It’s hard to remember the route though when we are exploring roads we have never been on before.