Just because I feel like adding a blog post…
Picked up a few more things for the bike:
- A Rivco centerstand (used)
- A lay-down license plate bracket kit from friend and fellow BA.com member, Zdenko Milin
- In the process of ordering a few things from BA.com site sponsor Fast Eddy: A temperature gauge to compliment my oil pressure gauge, a new speedometer cable loop coated in black teflon, and a Pingle petcock for the new Speedmaster tank. Also, he recently acquired a special headlight relay package that keeps the headlight off while starting the bike so as to not overly drain the battery, then uses the high-beam switch, flicked on and off, to trigger the low beam. Should help with some of my weak starting problems.
- I bought some goods from my friend Doug in California. Originally I was just looking for a pristine rear fender, but the one he sent is just too nice to hack up or repaint, and in a somewhat rare color, “Goodwood Green.” Doug also threw a few more things in the box, like a couple more matching green front fenders, a front fender bracket, a license plate frame, a license plate bracket, some “p-clamps” and oh, I don’t know, a few more knick-knacks. So whatever I don’t use I’ll sell and put the money in the BA.com operations fund. If I can find a Goodwood Green gas tank to complete that set, …well I don’t know what I’ll do. I really only want two sets of tin around.
If the weather stays in the 40s I’ll pull the scratched up orange rear fender off my bike and have it powder-coated jet black to complete my spare set of tin. The last fender I bought off ebay was a little too beat up and I didn’t want to spend time fixing it. So yesterday I sent it to it’s new home, in Australia. I guess they’re really hard up for parts down under. The shipping was more than the price of the fender. Crazy times.
BonnevilleAmerica.com is going great guns. Traffic numbers are rising for the homepage. I think people are starting to anticipate new Featured Member Ride articles on Wednesday afternoon. In fact, today, Wednesday the 9th, we had the biggest numbers since the launch in January. I have several member’s rides articles queued up or otherwise in progress and I’m trying to mix up the order, US member vs. Non-US, America vs. Speedmaster, Stock vs. Custom, newbie vs. veteran member… I’m probably putting way too much thought into it. But the articles seem to be popular. I’m getting ready for the next level on the BA.com main site. It’s going to keep evolving and growing. I hope to spend some quality time soon trying the forum upgrade again this weekend. If this hassle keeps up I may try to find a different forum software package to switch to. I guess I’m just spoiled with how easy WordPress is to use.
That’s all for now…
I was looking for my notes on the valve adjustment I did (more of a debacle, really) back in 2007. I’m overdue for another (minus the debacle part, hopefully). I have several posts over the years of “things I’m going to do to my bike,” most of which never happened. It was all bullshit. Life tends to get in the way. But I do have a much shorter, and realistic, list of things planned for my bike this year, as soon as it warms up a bit out in the garage.
- The aforementioned valve adjustment is close to the top of the list.
- Probably overdue for an oil change.
- The front tire is probably in decent shape. I’ll have to keep my eye on the rear tire. It wears quicker and was installed earlier than the front.
- Clean the K&N air filters
- If I’m feeling froggy I might redo the battery box under the seat so I can install a different set of larger airfilters I got from Zdenko.
- Red (thicker) fluid in the Scottoiler chain luber
- I’m about 99.5% certain my ignition module got soggy and stranded me in the squishy, sloppy, wet Pacific Northwest last September, so a new Procom CDI is on tap. Haven’t purchased it yet, however; didn’t want to tie up the cash for several months. Nods to Eddy.
That’s about it for maintenance. That’s certainly enough. I wonder about my clutch but I haven’t noticed any slippage. I’ve replaced other consumables like the chain, the battery and the tires, but I’ve got 52,000mi on the original clutch. Better order a clutch cover gasket just in case as that’s the only part of the job that has to come all the way from Old Blighty. Better order two or three… Read the rest of this entry
Not sure how often you’re supposed to replace helmets during normal use, but I’ve dropped mine several times over the past few years so I think it’s time. I have a fat head and need a 3XL. Not many options for the cabeza gordo, so I ordered up another HJC CL-Max modular. Probably not the greatest, certainly not the worst, but it fits my head and I’ve had my old one apart to replace bits and pieces (and once the entire chin assembly), so I’m familiar with it on that level. And I can reuse my smoke tint face shield. My original reasoning on the color still stands. I know white is supposed to be the most visible, but I just can’t do white. So silver is my compromise. It will go with any other colors involved in the equation, but it’s gotta be more visible than black.
Last year I was considering an open face helmet for summer riding, until I saw John Halpop crash with an open face and tear up his face a bit in the spots that would’ve been protected by the chin bar. Who knows, maybe it would’ve been worse with a full face but I have a hard time believing that.
Disclaimer: I never criticize those who choose not to wear a helmet and wear a “beenie” helmet when they have to. I’m firmly in the “let those who ride decide” camp. But it goes both ways, I don’t tolerate those who criticize me for wearing a helmet. Thankfully those are few and far between (at least the vocal ones are).
Disclaimer 2: I’m mostly posting this so I can remember when I bought this thing a few years from now. I can’t remember how long I’ve had my current helmet. I think I had my original full-face (fixed) HJC for 2-3 years, which means I’ve had this helmet for 5-6 years. Definitely time for a replacement, drops notwithstanding.
Just a quick note, inspired by the fact that IT’S SNOWING.
I’ve had the bike out twice already this year. Probably haven’t put much more than 50 miles on it. Last Sunday the weather was gorgeous so I got out in the garage and finished drilling out a couple baffles in my stock pipes. Naturally I was required after that to go for a ride and test them out. I’ve been running factory short Triumph “off road” (“short TORs”) mufflers for nearly 8 years, but I’ve always wanted to see what the stock pipes sounded like gutted, or at least partially gutted. I left in the third baffle and the reducer cone at the front. The results were amazing. The exhaust note, while not sounding tuned, sounded incredibly deep. I should have done this 8 years ago rather than buying the short TORs at around $385.
So now that I have these drilled pipes, I still have to mount up and try out the set of short slash-cut mufflers by Specialty Spares that I picked up used recently. Zdenko put a set on his girlfriend’s bike and says they sound nearly identical to his Specialty Spares long cannons, which I love. So if these SS shorties are that good, I’ll probably sell the drilled stock pipes.
Not 100% sure on the makeover happening this year. Events conspire to derail. But it’s no sweat; I’ve waited this long I can wait a little longer. Besides, I’ve got plenty of other things to do on the bike. Next up I’m going to install the Speedmaster drag bars, aftermarket pull-back risers with stepped bolts and finally, finally, finally, the dual disc front wheel. If I have the time and the will I will try and do the new turn signals and headlight, the latter requiring some rearranging of the wiring at the front of the bike.
But one thing at a time…
[Update: This will probably be updated frequently. People keep asking me for more pictures. Stuff is going fast. The sissybar is going to Taiwan! Damn, I haven't even STARTED with ebay yet...]
On the heels of my last post about selling the D&Ds, I just listed several items on BonnevilleAmerica.com in the classifieds. Here is the gallery of images, but I don’t have the prices listed in the gallery, only on BA.com.
Current Item list:
- The aforementioned D&D mufflers–need stripping and coating SOLD
- Triumph tall sissybar and luggage rack–usually a very popular item SOLD
- Stock tail light housing–good for blacking out while still saving your original chrome piece
- Triumph chrome rear brake reservoir cover–chromosexual approved SOLD
- Stock dash–again, good for color-coordinating with your tank or just blacking it out SOLD
- Optronics fog lights–cheap, lots of light SOLD
- Triumph chrome front brake reservoir cover with British flag sticker–also chromosexual approved SOLD
- George Foreman Grill (stock sprocket cover)–good for hacking up and customizing
- Aftermarket horn–meh
- Triumph chrome control levers–again, chromosexual approved SOLD
- Phantom Pad–weird, but if that’s your thing, okay–WON’T FIT A TRIUMPH
- Thunderbird Sport front rim, 17×3.5″, with spokes–good for you fat front tire fans, 1″ shorter than stock, 1″ wider than stock–laces right on to the stock America hub SOLD
- Triumph tachometer–could be fried, need someone to test it for me and only pay me if it works (which means my bike is still screwed up) SOLD
- Triumph rear fender luggage rack–still chromosexual approved SOLD
- Someone’s interested in my effed out Belt Drive kit SOLD
More to come. That’s good enough to get started.
I’ve been meaning to sell some stuff. I’m not ready to list everything but I do have a thing or two with which to kick this pig.
Now that I have some Specialty Spares slashcuts, I’m going to dump the D&Ds I have. Nothing against D&Ds, I just love the sound of Specialty Spares. I picked the D&Ds up off ebay a couple years ago and they’ve been sitting on a shelf in my garage since. They have some surface rust. My plan was to have them media-blasted and ceramic-coated black (keeping the heat shields chrome and the exhaust tips polished). Since I bought these with the plan to black them out, NewSpeedmaster started selling black D&Ds but they cost some bank. I got an estimate from Jet-Hot of $115 for the ceramic-coating. If I remember correctly Wolfe will do it for less. Even with shipping you’ll have Black D&Ds for less than half the cost of new pipes. Even less if you go low-tech with some BBQ paint like some have done.
I paid $75 plus shipping for these pipes and that’s all I want out of them. Here’s a picture from the original ebay ad. I’ll take some fresh shots of my own this weekend. The Specialty Spares were shipped from Iowa to Montana for less than $20 so I can’t imagine it costing much more than that for these (though they are longer). So let’s call it an even $100 shipped.
Next I’ll be listing a tall Triumph Sissybar with Luggage Rack and my HD Hard Bags. Gotta take some pictures first, though.
[Updated 4/2/2010 --FJ]
Okay, since I got through the recap of last year, I’m looking forward now. Specifically thinking about my bike and all my failed plans for modifications, and trying not to beat myself up too much. Taking stock of all the parts and supplies I have accumulated since I decided to give my bike an “Extreme Bobber Makeover™” a few years ago and upgrade the braking, I have the following:
Got back in the shop (well, Gene’s shop) to start customizing my spare gas tank. Mods on tap:
- Shave stock dash and smooth top of tank.
- Move gas filler forward and right, utilizing a Harley filler bung.
- Fuel sight gauge on the left side.
I’ve got a brushed aluminum monza-style flip up gas cap from NYC Choppers for the new tank. The indicator lights from the dash will be moved to a new mini speedometer mounted up on the bars, with a matching mini tach.
Gene’s doing the metal work and welding while I’m doing all the grunt work, cutting, flanging, templating, etc. He’ll be squirting the paint and I’ll be doing the other grunt work, filling and sanding.
[Updated with picture 01/08/10]
The Corbin backrest/glovebox that I posted about finally arrived and it is much cooler than I would have guessed. Honestly, when I first saw it on the Corbin site many years ago I thought it looked a little gay (not that there’s anything wrong with that…meh). But in person it looks much better and it seems to be very well made. The lid seems to seal very well, and the hinge and lock are very good quality. There’s a solid click-thunk when you close it, like closing the door on a well made car.
I haven’t placed it on the bike because it’s -9 degrees and I’m not spending any more time outside than I absolutely have to. I will have to paint the glovebox, but it will probably just be solid black. I still can’t get over what an insane deal this was at $99.
Stay tuned for pictures of it on my bike and after it’s painted. Go back two posts for the pictures from ebay.
I also recently received a black stator engine cover (right-side) off ebay from a Speedmaster and I’m awaiting a clutch cover (left-side) from my buddy’s wrecked 2002 Bonneville America. Those two items, along with my stock silver cam cover, will get matching black powder-coating. Can’t decide which black I’m going for, gloss, semi-gloss, matte or crinkle finish.
I’ve had my eye on a set of Triumph Speedmaster wheels (the newer, directional 5-spoke) on Ebay, but I just can’t pull the trigger, even at a paltry $500. I’ve already gone through so much to get a wire-spoke dual front disc wheel, but I’d love to stash those Speedy wheels away for my bike’s next makeover.
So I consoled myself with a killer deal on a Corbin backrest and glovebox. New the combo costs $578. I got it for $99. It’s black and red, which doesn’t match my bike at all, but I’ll either have my buddy squirt it solid black or I’ll just rattlecan it. Still a killer deal.