no politics...just ridin'

Flat Out

Rode into work last Friday from Kat's place at Kingscliff - nothing too outstanding about that I suppose, although it was a great morning to be on the road. When I had finished work for the day I headed up to my bike and started to mentally plan what I needed to do once I got home and for Saturday's ride. Kat & I were going to do the Black Uhlans Poker Run with Grizz, Panda & crew and I was heading down to her place so we could get an early start. Reached my bike, warmed her up, jumped on and off I went - something didn't feel right.

Got off and had a look at the rear tyre - flat as! There was also a chunk missing from my hugger. I found the culprit - looked like a piece of reo from one of the building sites that I had passed in the city earlier that morning, and it was big. I stood there thinking what to do - tried to ring a couple of guys to tow my bike but they were all busy. I decided to leave it in one of the car parks (the guy said I could leave it for nothing) and train it home.

Got home about an hour later and gave Dodge a ring to see if I could maybe put the bike in his ute. He suggested that I try Tyre Weld - that glue stuff in a can that you use to inflate flat tyres - something I had not even thought of. I decided to head back in to the city as I didn't really want to leave my bike in an open type car park on a Friday night. Took off for the train, calling into the servo and buying a can of the stuff along the way.

Reached my bike about 8:30pm and had a look at the tyre. I decided to remove the piece of steel as it was way too big to leave in. Took some twisting to remove and it was big - was very lucky that it had actually pierced the rubber in a groove just off centre. I inflated the tyre and watched it foam out of the hole. Got on the bike and slowly rode to a servo. I inflated the tyre to proper pressure and continued home.

I woke on Saturday and went to check the tyre out - it was still up. Packed my gear and headed off for Moss St and Brisbane Motorcycle Tyres which is on the way down to Kingy - before setting off I checked the tyre pressure and found that it had leaked a little but not too much. When I got there I spoke to the guy about either plugging or tubing. He said that you would never put a tube in this type of tyre and, because I had used the Tyre Weld, could no longer plug the hole. I reckon he just didn't couldn't be bothered pluggin it. He suggested that I leave it as is and just see how it goes - of course I thought that was a great idea coz the tyre had plenty of tread and would have cost $285 to replace.

I ended up at Kat's before lunch and decided to get another can of Tyre Weld to make sure the tyre was sealed. Put it in and Kat & I did a ride down to Lennox Head for a fantastic lunch in the sun. We had no problems with the tyre again. I have checked every day since and found that it is holding pressure, so at this stage will leave as is.

I am lucky that it was punctured at relatively low speed and I wasn't left stranded on the M1 early on Friday morning, although I was a bit pissed off that I couldn't get to Kat's on Friday evening and do the poker run on Saturday ( did it go guys??). Oh well - such is life!

The piece of reo that pierced my tyre

The damage to my hugger - you can also see how much tread I still have left

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Advanced Rider Training

I have just enrolled myself in one of the Sunday sessions of the Safer Motorcycle Advanced Rider Training (SMART) Program. These are put on by the Gold Coast City Council and are only $45, which I think is a really good deal. I don't think any competant rider would believe for one second that this training would not be of benefit - I know I am always looking for ways to broaden my riding skills, however these training days are normally quite expensive.

The Gold Coast City Council should be commended for providing this and for subsidising the cost - this will surely increase attendance numbers and be of great benefit to all attendees. They have taken a big step towards reducing the biker road toll in their region - the state government needs to take notice of what they are doing and look at more positive ways of reducing the road toll instead of the money grabbing speed cameras/radars.

It is a full day of training covering the following.....

For further details check out the info page on their website here.

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The Judge

Ooooooweee!! Nice lookin sporty for sale for a mere $60k - I've seen it in a couple of shows and it is a real sweet machine. Dunno whether he'll get much interest with that kind of price, but then again there are a lot of people willing to part with that for a chopper. The details on it can be found at Extreme Creations.

(Apologies for the picture quality but Blogger is having issues with pic uploads so I had to link to another site)


Power Commander On Zooki

I have always had a bit of an issue with my GSX in the 2 to 3k rev range - kind of like it is transitioning from idle to full on with very little in between. Due to this, the ride around town has been rough and ready with a fair bit of spluttering included as well.

Last night I finally managed to get around to fitting the Power Commander that I had purchased before Easter off eBay. I was lucky enough to be contacted by a guy in Sydney who wanted to sell me his, after he saw that I had bidded for one but lost. Only wanted $220 for it because it was a serial type and not USB, so I gladly took his offer up. Another $200 for a dynotune and I should be able to squeeze another 20 odd gee gees out of her!!!!

Anyway, the fitment of it took all of five minutes. I plugged her in to my laptop and then loaded a map that would best suit my Yoshi/K&N set up till I can get her dynoed. I let her idle for a while but it still seemed to be runnning a little rough but I thought I would leave it and see how it goes on the ride into work.

Well this morning was a slightly different story. I started her up for my ride into work. The idle was a lot smoother, but I just thought it was me thinking it was. Out towards the road and immediately noticed that the spluttering that always occured as I rode out of my complex was not there. I rode her with a little trepidation to the first set of lights listening for any sign of the splutter, but it seemed to be gone along with the often jerky throttle transition in the lower rev range. At the lights I thought I would open her up a little as there was no traffic around - wow. I experienced the "hanging by your hands" sensation that I have heard a lot of GSX owners talk about. I was very surprised that it would make this much difference while still yet to be dynoed and mapped accordingly.

It was amazing - even better was the fact that there apears to be no more spluttering and jerkyness in that 2-3k transition zone. Will give it a real go on the way home tonight and see how she performs.


Esk, Hampton & Plainland

After a week spent with Kat & the kids down the coast at Yamba I was hanging for a decent ride. I contacted Grizz to see what he was doing on Sunday and he let me know to be at the Goodna Caltex at 8:45. I contacted Koff and he seemed keen but unfortunately had to pull out in the end. Because I had stayed down at Kat's place this meant an hour's ride to get there, so I had a pretty early start. The ride up the M1 was fantastic - very little traffic and not one cop spotted. Took the turn onto the Logan Mwy and again there was very little traffic/no cops all the way out to the Ipswich Mwy and Goodna.

I was suprised to see quite a large group of bikes waiting when I pulled in - it soon became obvious that we were riding with a group of some sorts, as Grizz and Panda were in amongst them. I fuelled up, pulled over to the group and said g'day to them. Poor old Grizz lost a mirror on the way through one of the toll gates - he took off to ride through with Panda, but the gate decided to give him the chop and sheared the mirror off at the mount as well as left a couple of decent scratches in the helmet. I would be hitting Qld Motorways up for repairs!! Anyway, caught up with Kiwi Jim as well as Mike and Lizzy who were the only others I knew. Grizz told me that we were riding with the Social Club or SC - they aren't associated with anyone in particular, just a group of guys & gals that meet once a month for a squirt and a catch up. The majority of the bikes were HD's but there were a few Jap cruisers - even four VTX's - and a couple of sporties. All up I think there were about 25 bikes - I met quite a few of them and they were very welcoming.

After about half an hour the call went out and we geared up and headed off. The first stretch took us out along the Ipswich Mwy, Brisbane Valley Hwy and then we turned off and rode towards Fernvale. The pace was fairly relaxed on this first short stretch giving all a chance to find our place in the pack. Once in Fernvale we pulled up for a short stop to pick up any straglers. I took off before everyone else and pulled up a short distance down the road to try and get a pic of the group. Would have been some great shots as they rounded the bend and headed across the Brisbane River bridge but my camera just wont take progressive pictures so I only got a couple of average lookin shots. After all had passed, I packed away the camera and took off in pursuit. The group had spread out quite a bit with some going for it and others just cruising along. I worked my way through the pack passing quite a few of the tail bikes - that was great fun chasing down the leading group, although I never caught em till we stopped. I was kind of oblivious to the route we took coz I was having so much fun concentrating on my riding - there were some nice long straights with plenty of long sweeping curves thrown in - I was moving.

The lead group pulled up at the intersection ahead and I pulled in not too far behind them. We hung around until all had caught up - this was one aspect that I liked about these guys. Everyone was aware of our next destination but even so, the group waitied at major turns until all had caught up to be sure every rider was still with us. From here we headed in towards Esk. The morning was fantastic for riding - clear skies and quite warm, almost hot. Riding out this way makes you realise how much we are in need of some decent rain. It is just so dry - you dont appreciate it until you get out here and see it - the fields look dead with nothing much green, and with this area being one of Brisbane's major water catchments, it is no wonder we are on water restrictions. Can only hope for rain! Anyway, we rolled into Esk and pulled up at the pub for a few refreshing ales under the shady front balcony. We stayed here for a while - turns out one of the guys had snapped a clutch cable - a few others assisted him in rigging something temporary up and he was able to head off for home.

Headed off from Esk and up towards Hampton along the Esk-Hampton Rd. I again managed to get up the front and stopped for more pics of the group from an excellent vantage point. This route gets better every time I ride it - a fair length shaded by a state forest and stretches of the bitumen have been resealed recently. It is far better than the single lane track that I followed the first time I came up this way. I again set off in pursuit of the pack - this stretch was far more enjoyable as it is a lot tighter than the long straights on the way into Esk and the GSX just loves the curvy stuff. I rode her fairly hard but still well within my limits - this is where I really got to appreciate the extra ground clearance over the VTX as well as the extra power coming off some of the tighter curves. Man it was great. I caught up to the leaders just as they pulled over for a stop at the top. Once everyone had arrived we turned left and headed to the Farmers Arms. They serve a good pub meal here and this is where we stopped for lunch.

We left about an hour later and the majority pulled in for fuel a little further up the road. From here we rode a little further along the road to Toowoomba then took a left turn down through Murphy's Creek. This was a good little detour and my first time on this road - a few steep hills had me grabbing handfuls of brake and at one point I got a scare thinking I was airborne over the bars. She has great brakes and I am still getting used to the grab on them!! We finally found ourselves on the the Warrego Hwy. This is where things livened up a bit - a few of the boys took off and most of the group followed. Was a good squirt along the highway from Hellidon to Plainlands - luckily a bike heading the other way gave us a heads up on a cop car a little further down the road and we reigned it in before they were able to point their radar gun at us. We made it to our destination where we took the overpass off to the pub for another round of refreshments. Really noticed the heat once we stopped here - man it was hot! Got a cold beer and it hot the spot. Didn't hang around too long - what with Grandpa Joe and his band putting us to sleep with the crap they were playing, bikes started leaving. This is basically where the group ride finished up with smaller groups heading back to Brisbane.

We were one of the last groups to head off and once on the highway it was on - Panda decided to take the lead and stupid me tried to keep with her. Of course we all know that Panda is nearly always up for a squirt and she went for it with me tailing her and the others tailing me. I kept thinking about what Grizz always says to me - if you keep with her she thinks your pushing her so she just goes faster. Oh well, I did and it was fun!! Made it onto the Logan Mwy and then headed back to Grizz & Panda's place for a coffee. All up I notched up just under 500kms for the day. Was a great ride with a good group of riders - will be riding with the SC crew again.

The bikes at Goodna

All the VTX's

The group rounding a bend

...more of them as they pass...

....and they ride off into the distance!!


Waiting for the tail enders

In the shade at The Esk Pub

The bikes at the pub

Some of the bikes on the road up the range to Hampton

....and a few more!!

Jim being a typical bloody Kiwi!!



Check this out - 8.168 seconds for a quarter mile and it's battery powered!! I reckon it would be quite strange seeing a bike taking off from the line with little noise.

Who said going green needs to be slow.

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Dodgey Knee

I went round and visited Dodge last night. He is currently staying with Eddie and Lynne as he is not that mobile - bloody hell he's gettin' well looked after too. He is recovering well with the pain in his back slowly going and his knee, while still puffy from the operation, looks to be on the mend. Does look pretty gruesome though with all the staples in it!!

Dodge's left knee showing all the staples from his reco

He contacted his insurance company beginning of the week and they have already had an assessor out to check his bike out. Their verdict was that it is repairable, so it looks like the Triumph was not a write-off after all. Dodge reckons that they should start work on it after the Easter break - will probably be ready to roll again before he is!!!! Obviously he is fairly keen to get back in the saddle, but I can't see him on it again for at least a few weeks - still at least another week or two till he can put any weight on it.

As a sideline, isn't it funny how both Steve's and Dodge's Trumpy's are in the shop at the moment?? Go the Triumph's, hey Dodge!!!