no politics...just ridin'

Please Look Twice

The Motorcycle Council of New South Wales has produced some effective adverts and I reckon have managed to do a great job. They have paid to have these indexed and coded into the media libraries of EVERY TV STATION around Australia, so hopefully we will start seeing them soon.

Check them out here.



I finally managed to fit the ape hangers on my bike over the weekend. The whole process took me both Saturday and Sunday and involved the removal and replacement of front brake line, accelerator cables, clutch cable as well as cutting and extending the wiring and running them inside the bars. Here is a bit more detail on what I did......

Running Cables
I began with removing the tank as well as everything that I could from the bars - grips, levers and cables - and then fitted my new 14" apes. I wanted to make sure that the bars lined up with the forks and after sitting on the bike and trying them for a while I decided to remove the stock risers and use the risers off a VTX1800 retro which are about 1" lower - this also meant that the top and bottom risers now matched. Once the bars were fitted again, I then started to remove the accelerator cables from the carb - the airbox was removed and then the cables undone. I fitted the new longer cables (+8 inches) and threaded them along the frame, removing the old ones as I went. Adjusted the cables and then re-fitted the airbox. Moved around to the other side and replaced the old, stretched clutch cable with the new one. Clipped it into place and then ran all the new cables beneath the triple tree, through the retainers and let em hang. To get both switch housings to fit on the bars I needed to drill a 10mm hole in the bars on each side for the location pin to sit in - after fitting them and working out the correct location, the holes were marked and drilled and then the housings fitted.

Believe it or not, this was the part that I was looking forward to!! I began by removing the rubber covering from the clutch side wiring (which revealed 10 wires) and the from the brake side wiring (which revealed 7 wires). I realised straight away that I was going to have to drill the wiring holes that were pre-drilled in the bars bigger as they were only 7mm - I decided to drill them 12mm so I would have plenty of room. After that was done, I took a drive down to the local hardware store to see if they had any wiring harnesses that I could use - what I did find was a 7 core "trailer cable" which was exactly what I needed. The 7 wires were bound tightly by an outer housing and would fit perfectly through the bars, so I purchased a couple of metres. To be able to use this for the clutch side with 10 wires, I ran 3 additional lengths of wire down the outside of the trailer cable and taped them in place. I threaded the appropriate wiring through the bars on both sides with ease, although the clutch side was a bit tight to get out. I then cut the original bike wiring - two inches from the housing on the bars and a couple of inches below the exit point on the bars - I decided not to thread the original wires through the bars because the trailer cable that I ended up buying was already well protected. The matching of wires and soldering was the longest step in the process (about 4 hours) due mainly to me wanting to check everything twice - luckily I had Kat to help me with this. Once completed, I fitted the housings onto both sides and checked that everything worked and then set about wrapping/heat shrinking the wiring and tidying it all up.

I fitted the accelerator cables to the throttle and the clutch cable to the lever - checked that it all worked ok and fastened. Then came the brakes. I was able to stretch the old brake line enough so that I could fit the master cylinder onto the bars. I then covered the bike with rags and removed the old brake line with minimal spillage. I then routed and fitted the new brake line. Now I had never bled brakes before, so I had done a bit of research on the best way to go. In the end I decided to use a piece of clear tubing over the bleed valve with the other end sitting in clean brake fluid - that way an air lock is achieved. I removed the top and seals from the master cylinder, opened the bleed valve and pumped. After about five pumps I stopped and watched as the fluid slowly drained from the master cylinder into the brake line, with air bubbles coming out the end of the clear tube. I topped up the fluid in the master cylinder and pumped again. I repeated this process about four times until no air was coming from the bleed valve and tightened the bleed valve up. The brakes were rock hard - really a very simple process and didn't take long at all. And to think that this was the part I was most worried about!! I re-fitted the tank and seats and sat on her - man, the positioning felt a little different but I could feel relief straight away between my shoulders. My first ride was this morning on the way to work - the position is great, so comfortable and laid back. The clutch was a lot more positive due to the new cable and the brakes were so much easier to use due to the braided line. I love it!

From the pics above it does look as if the brake line is a bit too short - I have since re-routed the brake line to inside the triple tree and now have sufficient length.

I have spent a little more time on it and the more I ride, the more I like!! It is such a comfortable riding position - the bars now push me back a little and my arms are bent, where as with the stock bars I was almost leaning forward with my arms straight out. There is obviously a little more vibration due to both the length and because I did not fit the weights into these bars from the stock bars - but it is not that noticable once you've been riding for a while. It does take a bit of getting used to steering the bike because it is now more sensitive with the increased length but I no longer have to "work" the bike into corners.

All up, the best mod I have done by far because it has made my riding position a lot more comfortable - all I can say is bring on the long rides!!

Old & New Riding Position

Thought I would post a pic of both sets of bars to show how much wider the apes are than the stockers. Also thought I would photoshop an old pic and the one above to compare riding positions - I know it's not perfect but you can see the difference.


Brunswick Heads With The Coomera Cruisers

I was unable to ride last weekend as have been having some issues with one of my girls but it sounds like the Logan Village crew had a good ride. Taffy tells me they headed south to Brunswick Heads with another group, the Coomera Cruisers. Had lunch at the Brunswick Hotel (a top destination with a great beer garden) and then headed back. They made a stop at one of the Coomera Cruisers mates places somewhere near Murwillumbah to check out the progress on a stall/shop (?) he is building from a couple of old train carraiges.

From the pics it looks like there were a few bikes and a great day to ride.

Lucky bastards!!

The Roadrash Queen...

Here is something to read and think about as we head towards the warmer months. I know that I often ride in just tee shirt and jeans, but after reading this article it has made me think twice. One gutsy chicky......cute too!!

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It had been a few weeks since we had ridden some of the great roads north of Brisbane so Kat & I, on a child free weekend, decided to head up that way on Saturday. We met up with Koff (yeah we were a bit late!!) at the toll plaza of the Gateway Bridge and then headed for a fuel stop at Nudgee. After fueling both the bikes and us we took off bound for Maleny. The weather was overcast and the clouds looked very dark to the north so we expected to get a little wet.

We headed north along the motorway and copped a sprinkle of rain along the way. Traffic was pretty full on and we were slowed right up as we made our way through the roadworks. Finally got up to the Landsborough exit and followed the soon-to-be Steve Irwin Way through Glass House Mtns and onto Beerwah. Just north of Beerwah we decided to pull into Australia Zoo to check out the tributes to Steve Irwin. Didn't even need to get off the bikes - just rode up and had a look at the pictures, flowers, flags, etc on the footpath adjacent to the zoo entrance. Lots of tributes to the man and still some people leaving their thoughts in a book that had been set up. Says a lot about the bloke. Anyway, we got back onto the road and headed up the mountains towards Maleny.

The views of the Sunshine Coast and out to sea as you reach the top are impressive, although it was very hazy and you could feel the temperature drop the higher we got. Finally rode into Maleny and after riding the length of the main street, decided to stop for a drink at the pub. It was here that I suggested we go back and see if we can find somewhere to take some pics of the bikes. After finishing our drinks we headed out to the bikes and headed back a few kms to find a decent vista for a few pictures. We did find a couple of spots and took some pics, but had more fun getting in and out of these places. There was a lot of haze around so nothing spectacular to look at unfortunately.

We then dropped in to some relatives of Koff's who live in Maleny in a great location and with the best garage ever!! Everything including the kitchen sink - my dream garage with enough room to house 4 cars comfortably, huge benches a seperate brewing room and a deck!! You wouldn't see much of me if I lived there. Anyway, we shared a drink with them and then after the tour of that garage, headed off.

The road from Maleny down to the Kilcoy-Beerwah Rd is a great road on a bike, passing through some sweeping sections of road and then into a dense forest bordering some nice tight corners - only about 6 or 7 kms but demanding enough to test your skills. Really enjoy this road everytime I ride it, which is not often enough! Once at the tee intersection, we turned right heading towards Woodford, and the country opens up with long straight sections of road, and nice long sweeping corners - good for a real decent blat. Again, not a lot of traffic which was surprising considering it was a Saturday afternoon. We reached the Daguilar Hwy and rode into Woodford where we stopped for lunch.

After filling up on burgers and fish we re-mounted and rode the short distance to Daguilar, turning right onto Mt Mee Rd. From here the road took us through many varied landscapes and varying degrees of road conditions. The road itself really needs resurfacing in a lot of areas - it is a pitty because it does detract a little from what would be an otherwise excellent ride. Through Dayboro and past the old Crown Hotel, then on to Samford. Very few vehicles again - and I think we passed less than five bikes heading in the opposite direction, which is not many for a popular bike route.

We pulled into the servo on the roundabout at Samford to fuel up and then headed into the city and the traffic. The ride through Brisbane Forest Park was busy with a lot of cars heading towards the city. Onto the ICB and Riverside Expressway and that's where we waved off Koff who still had another 80 kms to home. We got back to my place at about 5:30 after just less than 300kms. Another day spent doing what we love - in the saddle and riding!!

The route we took can be viewed here.



I always knew these bastards were mad.....some incredible footage in this clip set to some great music. Checkout some of the powerslides and monos.....woah!! Enjoy.

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Barbwire Memorial Poker Run

Took part in the Barbwire Memorial Poker Run on Saturday that honours the Vietnam Vets that have passed on since service. My younger daughter Cass wanted to ride with me, so I picked her up from her mothers place and we headed to Logan Village on a beautiful spring morning to meet with the crew. Arrived there just as they were saddling up and so we stayed on the bike - a few minutes later we took off with about 12 other bikes heading to the Vietnam Vets MC clubhouse at Kingston.

We arrived and collected our first card at the gate on the way in - now I had never been to their clubhouse before and I was very impressed. Instead of the usual type of clubhouse and small outdoor area in an industrial unit, it was a large slice of land that bordered a creek with well kept grounds and a number of buildings. We hung around for about an hour and watched the bikes come in until it was time for the memorial service. Everyone gathered around the flags, names of past members were read and poppys laid in their honour. The Ode of Rememberance was then recited. Once the formalities had been completed, the ride captain addressed us all on our route and we then prepared to ride.

The first leg took us from the clubhouse and out onto the M1 for a short squirt down to Coomera and the Lost City. I was amazed at how many idiots in cars tried to push in to the group as we made our way towards the motorway - we even had a bus driver cut across in front of several riders as he drove through a roundabout. Once on the motorway, the group was split up due to the heavy traffic heading down the coast and it would not re-group until we took the exit at Coomera. We rode the short distance up to the Lost City Hotel, parked the bikes and went inside for our next card and a drink. This pub is relatively new with an Egyptian theme - it also has a great bar to watch footy in called The Dome with three giant screens.

The next leg was relatively short from the Lost City up to the Eagle Heights Pub. It is always nice up here - one of the best beer gardens with a sensational view of the Gold Coast. This was also the lunch stop, so we spent a while sitting around and talking and trying to stay out of the sun - it was really starting to warm up! After about an hour or so, the call went out to saddle up. We headed out into the carpark and prepared ourselves for a ride over Tamborine.

This part of the ride was nice and refreshing as it was a bit cooler up in the hinterland and there was a fair bit of shade on the way down. We headed through Mt Tamborine and then down the mountain to the Winderoo Tavern for our final stop. The drink couldn't come soon enough - it was now getting really warm and I, along with many others was starting to feel the effect. We made our way in, got hold of a drink and finally managed to get a card. The final call went out and we headed out to mount up for the last time.

The final leg took us from Winderoo out to the M1 and then a short ride north to the turn off for the clubhouse. We rode into the clubhouse at about 5pm and then headed in for a well deserved drink. Most others picked up their final card but I didn't bother coz my hand was no good for anything. We hang around for a while listening to the band and browsing the stall that had been set up and then finally headed home. The day was really, really enjoyable with perfect weather and a great route.

Just a small thankyou for someone special - I really appreciate the efforts of my daughter, Cass, who took some great pictures (over 200) from the back of my bike - my "little" girl rode with me for the whole day and didn't complain once (ok - maybe once) - I'm sure she is a future rider/photographer!!

The ride from Logan Village to the Vietnam Vetrans MC clubhouse.....

Entering the clubhouse grounds....

The clubhouse and surroundings.....

The memorial service....

The ride begins....

Back at the clubhouse after the ride....

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