A motorcycle parked in front of a tent on a pleasant green campsite

Welcome To Bikes And Travels...

...It's about bikes...and travels...mostly on bikes!

Steep hills and hardy grasses on a narrow lane at The Mull Of Kintyre

It's summertime now and the rain has gotten warmer. Where are you planning to explore then huh?

What's New?

Exploring The Mull Of Kintyre A little look around The Mull Of Kintyre on two wheels and a short walk that Ren makes a big thing of.
Self Reprimanding Is it good to beat yourself up over honest mistakes? He's a bit funny that way is Ren.
Air Head To Ayr Sharon is having one of those days. Still, she's keeping positive and her motorcycle upright.
The Long Way To Machrihanish Using ferries to get from Bute to Machrihanish ought to be a most pleasant and easy ride. So how do Sharon and Ren manage to turn it into an epic exploit?
Getting Mentally And Physically Ready Before Sharon leaves for Scotland she's both excited and yet pensive? She's normally a chilled out traveller so what is different this time?
Why Oh Why Did The Council Close That Road? Blinking town planners doing stupid things to make traffic worse! Are they a bunch of buffoons or is their method to their madness?
The Beauty of Bute Is Bute a Beaut? It's a most peculiar day to find out though. There's no rain and a big yellow thing in the sky.
Boating To Bute An easy and leisurely ride up the coast of Ayrshire and an evening on the Isle of Bute.
Slip Sliding Away In preparation for her forthcoming trip to Scotland Sharon throws the Kwakker 250 down the road. Is this muppetry of just damnable sheer bad luck?
That Load Ren's bike looks like it's carrying everything he owns. Is he over-prepared or can his fervent excuse making win you over?
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Latest Posts

Exploring The Mull Of Kintyre Upt'North said :-
I was there last Monday Ed, day ride to North Berwick. Fish, chips, peas and cherry ice cream for pud.
Blummin lovely.
North Berwick has just been named as second best seaside resort, it is nice. In first place was Bamburgh in gods country. Before you know it there'll be a NEC 200 to ruin the flipping place. The NC500 has done nothing to improve a ride in Scotland, damn clever marketing though. The very thing that would stop me going anywhere is if MCN say I must go and everyone else does.
But that's probably just me.
Ed! Lock your top box!

17/6/2019 9:36:19 AM UTC
Exploring The Mull Of Kintyre Ren - The Ed said :-
You know, I can go to far better blogs than this to be insulted you know Upt' and I have been too!

Yes Scotland is beautiful ain't it. And you only live around the corner, I woulda thought you'd be there every weekend.
17/6/2019 8:40:46 AM UTC
Slip Sliding Away GJ said :-
Sorry to read about your accident Sharon.

But a few bruises to you and a few scratches to your motorcycle is a good outcome in the circumstances.
Your gear did a job in preventing worse injuries in the accident.
You had to take the least worse option and brace yourself.
At least you have a recollection of the incident in question.
Get well soon.
16/6/2019 8:34:33 PM UTC
Exploring The Mull Of Kintyre Upt'North said :-
Fat, Lazy and fantastic to see. I thought Sharon was doing a descriptive of your good self Ed until I read the last three words.
God Scotland is beautiful.
Especially when Ed is out of shot.
16/6/2019 5:22:07 PM UTC
CBF125 Fork Seal Change Ren - The Ed said :-
Let us know how the MOT goes.

The centre stand is a right royal pain in the ass. I removed mine several years back and made great efforts to ensure it did not seize in situ again. Last year I came to remove it to give it the once over and quite frankly the only way that stand is coming off will be with brutal use of an angle grinder.

My first side stand started to bend so I replaced it. I soon strengthened the replacement by welding a bar along its length and so far it has survived my heavy camping luggage rigors. You might do well to shorten your stand a little.

I think my 125's touring days are over now. It is rather thirsty in the oil department so unless I'm going to carry a few litres of 10w40 with me I'd be at risk of running dry. In spite of its unquenchable thirst I still really enjoy riding it.

16/6/2019 9:10:51 AM UTC
Power Bank Charging Quandary Ren - The Ed said :-
Cheers Bill. At 3.1 amps that'd be 3 times faster than my current (ha!) USB charger. The downside with this one is the connectors is the SAE type but it wouldn't be hard to chop that off and fit the one that would plug into the Honda's option plug.

Of course my power bank will only swallow one amp at a time but there's plenty out there that swallow more and they're cheap enough too these days. Good call, thanks.
16/6/2019 8:28:42 AM UTC
CBF125 Fork Seal Change tahrey said :-
(once I've managed that I'll have to actually extract the phone photos...)
16/6/2019 12:23:25 AM UTC
CBF125 Fork Seal Change tahrey said :-
All this time later and after a few other snags I've finally got the machine going again, and the front suspension seems to be working OK, maybe a little soft vs what it was like before, with an initially disconcerting "pfft" noise every time the forks compressed... until I realised that was air escaping from the newly added gaiters. Derp.

The acid test now will be getting the bugger MOT'd. Gonna run it up a couple more times first though because I need to flush out the "temporary" post-overhaul oil (just random car oil, doesn't seem particularly clutch/gearbox compatible) and then properly circulate the new bike-grade stuff...

Had to give up on the centre stand, it simply wasn't going to shift, and I lack the necessary equipment to deal with forcing it out. Got a new sidestand on at least (gave up on trying to straighten the old one), though it's very nearly too long (holds the bike dead straight in the garage and it's already got knocked over to the right once already because of it, so choice of parking spots will have to be very careful at first) which either means I've been sent the wrong thing, or is simply a demonstration of just how crushed and bent the old one had become (which was having trouble stopping the bike toppling to the left...).
16/6/2019 12:22:39 AM UTC
Power Bank Charging Quandary Bill said :-
Hi Ren, came across this and thought it maybe of interest as its higher output.
15/6/2019 12:13:29 PM UTC
Self Reprimanding Ren - The Ed said :-
I still prefer a good level of protection for myself Ian though I accept the risk compensation aspect. Sharon had all her kit on when she took her spill on the gravel and I've no doubt the kit did it's job and did it well. If nothing else we'd have been pulling gravel out of her thigh without it. It is still perfectly reasonable to consider - would she have been going much slower which would have allowed her to avoid the gravel if she'd been wearing jeans and a Barbour jacket? The great what ifs.

Yes the magic suit might make motorcycling perfectly safe for the rider but this won't protect the pedestrian from the 190kg lump of metal and plastic hurtling towards them because the rider can afford to see if corner X can be negotiated at speed Y without injury. Snod - you and I being as tight as the lug nuts on an 18 wheeler - we wouldn't carry out such experiments but there are plenty with enough cash that would.

Tens of pounds Snod? Such frippery, such excess! Calm yourself man and save the pennies for a rainy day.

I'm the tidiest person in my house too CrazyFrog. That's because I'm the only person in my house. The worst part about living along is when the place is a poop tip and I can't find something I only have myself to blame. I have shouting matches with myself, and just like being married I still lose the argument.

I could fill the server with mistakes I've made... made twice.
14/6/2019 9:25:14 AM UTC
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Latest Chit-Chat

Go To Chit-Chat Ren - The Ed said :-
Boris will reduce tax for high earners so presumably he'll raise it for low earners? Of course there'll be Brexit in which case we won't be able to receive any "immigrant" weather from Europe. We'll have to have good, solid, genuine BRITISH weather. Wet rain, real rain, none of this Euro-liberal drizzle nonsense. And we'll not be having any of that namby pamby gender non specific equal rights all inclusive sunshine either.

When they said 60 they meant 60mm of rain. Per hour. Durgh how can you not realise that.

Why are you being nice and saying nice things about my writing? What's the catch? What do you want?
11/6/2019 2:02:43 PM UTC
Upt'North said :-
And, really enjoying the Scotland write up.
You're not a bad scribe.
11/6/2019 1:44:28 PM UTC
Upt'North said :-
And, on the subject of weather Ed, why can't they get the blummin forecast right.
Went to North Berwick on the STeed yesterday, 60 they said, 60 my a...
11/6/2019 1:43:00 PM UTC
Upt'North said :-
Thanks Ed.
And don't worry when Boris gets in he'll reduce the tax for high earners.
11/6/2019 1:40:42 PM UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Yes yes yes, you lot keep on talking about how lovely it is even if the weather is pants. Meanwhile I'll just keep on earning the taxes that keep you lot going. Pffffffft!
11/6/2019 9:25:06 AM UTC
Womble said :-
Hi Ian Soady Glad your enjoying you hols, a lot of people do seem to pass through the area to head south but there are a lot of great places and it's so much quieter than the south. The weather at the moment not at it's best it has to be said.
11/6/2019 9:08:36 AM UTC
Ian Soady said :-
Hi Womble that's the one. Not under canvas, being softies, but in our trusty caravan. i was a bit worried about the awning at times. It felt as if we might end up in the Cher which is about 8 metres from where I'm sitting.

Lovely little municipal campsite here - we're the only people on it even over Pentecost although I suspect the weather has put people off. And a pretty town with a dramatic late Victorian fake gothic basilica, and of course a real castle! A very interesting area which we've always just passed through previously.
10/6/2019 11:31:51 AM UTC
Upt'North said :-
Womble, curiosity got the better of me, it usually does.
We stayed at Bonnilly, North of you and the next night stayed just outside Rocamadour. We didn't use the autoroute because it was a shortish riding day, about 200 miles and we passed East of Limoges.
It was mid June and flaming hot. Like UK hot x 2. I think the photo I posted would be just south of you but I have slept and drank a glass or two of red since then.
9/6/2019 5:37:29 PM UTC
Womble said :-
Hi Ian Soady If that's near Bourges your about 100 miles north east of us! Yes it has been a little windy here to, hopefully all gone now and Sun for the next week or two. Are you under canvas? If so I bet that was fun. Enjoy the rest of your trip, how long are you over for.
9/6/2019 3:39:12 PM UTC
Ian Soady said :-
Hi Womble.

As it happens we're about 200 miles east of you at the moment on the municipal campsite at Chateauneuf sur Cher. It didn't half rain, then we were hit by Storm Miguel with 80 kph winds - very exciting. Fortunately not on the bike.....
9/6/2019 2:11:44 PM UTC
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