Monday, February 13, 2012

Another Lesson Learned... A Motorcycle Mechanic...

I ain't!

Started jacking the bike up... and one thing after another, fed my frustration. To start with, I don't and never have enjoyed wrenching on machinery. Just something that never appealed to me.

The only time I have is when I simply couldn't afford to pay it done. That was the only real motivation I had in thinking I'd take on the Tire work on my Raider... to save a few bucks of which I have few.

But then I jacked the scooter up on that Harbor Freight Motorcycle Jack...

and discovered, rather unpleasantly that the thing was not what you might call Rock Steady... and Yamaha really doesn't reveal all in their manual for the bike.

So... with the bike in the air I laid down and looked up in there... and discovered pretty plain... that to get to the curb side of the rear axle... the pipes are in the way... and with the pipes there... how am I gonna get in there to SEE anything to make sure the dang wheel is aligned properly when I put it back on?

Even once I got the wheels off... I still was gonna have to haul 'em in and pay 40 bucks for mounting and balancing...

If I just take the whole dang bike in the price for the labor with tax and all was gonna be $140 bucks... so in the end I'm saving a hundred stinkin' bucks... ahhhhhhhh.... at least, if nothing goes bad on me while I am trying to save dinero...

I'm laying there thinking, if I'd just already took the bike in and let a guy who has the tools, the experience and the insurance if something goes bad :) do the job... I'd be out RIDING right now... instead of laying here with all the visions of all the things that can go wrong rattling through my head! :)

... and then my intimate relationship with Murphy's Law occurred to me... the picture of trying to load an 800 lb bike... with no wheels... into a truck if I got to where my ego couldn't override my common sense any more floated through my tiny lil' pea brain.

Well... I started having difficulty convincing myself that doing what I don't enjoy... for the sake of saving a few dollars made any sense.

I guess it's no surprise that right about then I quit the idea and rode the bike down to a shop nearby... and paid 'em to swap my tires for me! :)

Yeah... some bikes it's a simple chore... but the Raider those pipes cover over the stuff you've gotta get to... and makes it a real PITA! ... I'm not about to tackle that out on the side of the road... so why bother with it at "Home"?

Some guys really enjoy wrenching on the their bikes...and that's well and good. I Don't... nor my trucks or cars for that matter. Outside of bolting on a few customize bits here and there... the heavy duty wrenching on a bike, truck or car... has never tickled my imagination...

Now some say if you ride 'em you should wrench on 'em. "It's part of the Motorcycle Lifestyle"...

I say... "Nope. The Motorcycle Lifestyle I adhere to is; Ride what you want, Ride where you want, when you want... and have your gol' darn tires changed by whoever you choose!" :)

The Important thing is to... Put it in the Wind!

I'm gonna just continue to drive 'em... or RIDE 'em, like I always have!  That's a reality I'm not gonna forget in the future... and is why I have a really nice Towing Service that will cover my Truck, My Fifth Wheel... any cars I might own... AND... my Raider Motorcycle! :)

Grab Your Handles and Ride!

Return to the Home page of Motorcycle Touring on Freedom Road
Visit our sister site goin' RV Boondocking

Share your stories and opinions;
*Tell us Which you think is the... The Best Touring Motorcycle
*Share...  Your Personal Motorcycle Philosophy with us!
*Tell us about your...  Great Motorcycle Roads


the_Wanderer said...

Glad you finally worked out your tire woes, Brian! I know you love your Raider. Perhaps going to a 180 rear on a different bike would help. Just an economical thing with me. 4000 miles per tire? Something fishy with that kind of getting raked over the coals.

Brian said...

Yeah... a Raider can be tough on rubber, but I don't believe I could give her up to save tire rubber! :)

There's so much torque it's hard for some guys to keep out of the throttle ;) There's quite a few Raider Riders that avg 3000 miles on a back tire! THOSE guys need to lighten up juuuuuust a touch ;)

I've been getting 10,000+ out of the back tire... this one I believe was a bad tire, it went bad. and Metzler has no inclination to back up their product... so now I'm riding on Avon tires. With less than a hundred miles on 'em I'm already pleased with what I see as a noticeable improvement in handling.

Now... If the mileage will only make it to the 12 or 14,000 I've been getting out of the front tire I'll be a happy biker! :)

Paul said...

Hello darlin', it's me again... LOL

I have one o' those Harbor Freight lifts and what nobody's tellin' ya is, you still needs to strap the bike down. They get scary shaky up in the air, with their feets off the ground... like a nervous fat girl on a Ferris wheel.

I've horsed around big ol' Harley Hogs on that cheapo little lift and never dropped a single one... after I tied 'er down real good.

If you just leave 'er to balance up there, you're cheatin' the laws of fizzicks. Gravity isn't just a good idea, it's the law!

If'n it were me, havin' a flatbed truck and a fancy loadin' ramp, what I'd do is... ride that sucker up onto the bed o' the truck, lift 'er up, strap 'er down real good on some solid blocks and get bizzy.

If push comes to embarrassing disaster, I'd already have the bike loaded and would jus' have to drive to the nearest place that could save my butt.

I'd be sure to wear a sack over my head, tho. Tehehehe. ;)

Brian said...

That strappin' it down on the bed of the truck is actually a pretty clean idea. :) I'll have to keep that on a sticky note in the bathroom or somewhere! ;)

motorcycle mechanic said...

I appreciate this footage shared in your blog. I learn good things about the motorcycle repair. Thanks and keep sharing the lessons like this.