The city of Nice seen from the surrounding hillside bathed in sunshine

Welcome To Bikes And Travels...

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

Lake Bala North Wales bathed in warm sun

Oh summer where for art thou? Ren is missing the warmth of summer but when it returns he'll be complaining about the amount of traffic on the roads.

What's New?

Pumping Losses What are pumping losses in a 4 stroke engine? Ren tries very hard to explain but we're still not really sure.
Brake Fluid Change Pocketpete's brake fluid is being refreshed with help from Ren. It's a simple task but as with any motorcycling things there's a hundred ways to do it.
MPG - The Bike Or The Rider? Motorcycles use fuel. But what governs that consumption most, the rider's style or the design of the vehicle? Rod has got his thinking hat on.
CB500X Strange Sprocket Noise Damn that damnable chain! Actually today's problem is the front sprocket. Or is it even a problem?
Maximum Load Weight What is the maximum load you can carry on a motorcycle? Is there even such a number? There is and it's not as much as you might hope.
Houston - We Have A Problem Pocketpete has sprung a leak since the tappet service. Can he fix it? And why is (another) Honda dealer trying to sell the wrong kind of coolant?
Stop N Go Tyre Plugger Observation Ren's had to fix a puncture with his puncture fixing thingy. It does work, but not *quite* how he'd expect
Idiot's Guide To Valve Trains An idiot's understanding of valve trains. That'll be 4 stroke valve trains we are assuming. Best not to assume anything really.
Those Shim Thingys Pocketpete's getting his hands dirty with a little help from Ren. He's about to discover what a "shim" is for.
A Lesson From The Frozen North Cold and wet, wet and cold. It's the worst combination and it is causing Ren to have a minor issue on his commute.
See More What's New

Latest Posts

Pumping Losses Rod said :-
I think that we now all realize that many factors are involved in the fuel economy equation.
Pumping losses are one factor, and are felt when riding as engine braking.
What I do not understand is what "Sharon may be slightly more sporty tuned" has to do with pumping losses?
18/2//2019 9:28:53 PM UTC
MPG - The Bike Or The Rider? Ren - The Ed¹ said :-
Fun? What is this thing called "fun" you speak of? I don't like the sound of it, we'll be having non of your "fun" here.
18/2//2019 2:37:40 PM UTC
MPG - The Bike Or The Rider? Steve B said :-
Fun is the factor for us Mike.
But those looking for economy would need to look elsewhere.
Each to their own I would like more mpg but I enjoy the Aprilia and I have a Honda 300 scooter that is good on fuel for shorter journeys so Im spoiled a bit
18/2//2019 11:32:41 AM UTC
Pumping Losses pocketpete said :-
So its very hard to compare even two similar size engine bikes. I do wonder when I looked at fuelly where people put up their mpg whats going on. CB500x's seem to range from 65 to nearly 100mpg. I suppose my bike with a slimeline 16stone 13lbs (down from 18 9lb despite the recent bacon butties) will be far more efficient if sharon was riding it.

Maybe that accounts for the sudden increase in mpg I have been getting. My bikes average has been firmly on 74.8mpg for as long as I can remember but now seems to be 76mpg.

Is that the reduction in mass or the service and tappets or both which has raised me to such heady heights or just slightly less traffic going to work at 5am instead of 6am.

Maybe we should introduce some some of bike handicapping system like they have in horse racing to even the mpg up a bit.
18/2//2019 11:10:55 AM UTC
MPG - The Bike Or The Rider? Mike said :-
When I bought my fzr1000 new in 1996 I got over 50mpg running it in and around 27mpg after. But I didn't get a bike to save money on a run even when commuting, it was about not sitting in traffic, getting to the destination by having fun and if fun mentioned an extra £20 a week by going faster, accelerating harder, braking later that's what I did. I'm also old enough to remember when fuel went over £1 a gallon and saying I'm not paying that, and here I am 30 odd years later still buying my feel good drug called petrol. The only time I think about mpg is when the low level light comes on, which on the fjr1300 is after 175miles, and a petrol station is needed. I'm rambling a bit but the bike will always do more mpg, it's the rider that can't stay away from having fun.
18/2//2019 11:07:19 AM UTC
Pumping Losses Ren - The Ed said :-
HA!!! Holy poop Pocketepete. IF IF IF it were purely down to pumping losses then as the Inazuma is heavier therefore the throttle is open wider then the Zuma would be more efficient. But this is nonsense. Because the throttle is open wider the Zuma is letting more air in. More air means more fuel. More fuel means less efficient.

My money would be on Sharon's being a little more efficient than the Zuma. Simply because there's less metal to get moving each time we leave the lights. BUT, and it's a big BUTT (and I cannot lie...) Sharon's engine is from a motocross bike. Power is everything, fuel is nothing in motocross.

Sharon often returns 90mpg. That seems amazing but bear in mind she only weighs about the same as the engine in my 500 and as she's small she offers very little wind resistance. I'd be curious to know what a 15 stone 6 footer would achieve.
18/2//2019 9:52:09 AM UTC
Pumping Losses Pocketpete said :-
So if we take the 250inzuma and Sharon's sl250. They are both the same engine size but I would assume the inzuma is pretty damn heavy compared to Sharon's bike but sharon may be slightly more sporty tuned. Which will be more efficient.

18/2//2019 8:48:19 AM UTC
MPG - The Bike Or The Rider? Steve B said :-
Ive got an Aprilia Shiver 750. Road tests gave 45mpg
It has a digital dash that shows mpg as you go
Sat on the Italian autostrad at the 80 mph speed limit showed 50 mpg so i rolled the throttle back to 75mph and was showing 55-60 mpg
All excited arriving at the next fuel stop and filled up
Yes you guessed it 45mpg
Figure that one out as I cant
On this particular bike it makes no difference what speed or how it is ridden, always 45mpg
17/2//2019 8:39:32 PM UTC
CBF 125 Cold Tickover SOLVED Ren - The Ed¹ said :-
Cor!! With another 10,000 handy helpful tips I could save the motorcycling world! Glad to have been of service and I glad your velocipede is working as it should. Be sure to check the tappets once in a while in the future eh.
17/2//2019 7:53:11 PM UTC
Brake Fluid Change Ren - The Ed said :-
Oh I say Upt'North, that's rather clever.

Question - we all know brake fluid ruins paintwork and plastic. I have to presume the paint actually on the brake calliper is not affected (effected?) by the brake fluid?

Remember peeps - keep brake fluid away from everything other than brakes.
17/2//2019 7:49:20 PM UTC
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Latest Chit-Chat

Go To Chit-Chat Upt'North said :-
Thanks Bill, I didn't think they would be made anywhere else. I've seen the Bergen too.
Ed, sweet, peachy, hmmm hmmmmmm, but practical no. But then again if we wanted practical we'd sell our 2 wheeled beauties and buy diesel Ford's. But obviously not drive them because they'll destroy the planet, apparently.
Which sort of goes full circle because just about everything we buy is made in China with coal burnt power.

18/2//2019 11:41:08 PM UTC
Ren - The Ed¹ said :-
That Bullet is sweet. It is rather like the BMW R9-T and the CCM Spitfire, lovely to look at but nowhere for luggage!!
18/2//2019 8:58:41 PM UTC
Bill said :-
US pro and Bergen are both Chinese manufacture with names trying to sound like somewhere else.
That's why the are cheap and favourites on market stalls. You get what you pay for but for occasional home use could be OK for the price.
18/2//2019 7:36:55 PM UTC
Upt'North said :-
Yes Ian the warranty always justified the price but not for home use. I have never had a problem getting repairs to Snap On kit either.
But on a different note. What a peach.

18/2//2019 4:08:37 PM UTC
Ian Soady said :-
I have a snap-on 1/2" ratchet that I bought about 40 years ago when I was temporarily flush. A couple of years ago the ratchet drive became a bit erratic. I bumped into a snap-on van outside a tyre fitters and spoke to the driver and he came round to my house and replaced the ratchet drive for me. Completely FOC. The lifetime guarantee means what it says on these tools.

That ratchet, although it's had a hard life, still looks and performs beautifully. The Yanks do know how to make tools, although some of the old British ones I still have (Williams superslim, Snail, King Dick and Shelley) are still working well.

Like you however I couldn't justify the cost for what I now use tools for.
18/2//2019 2:29:27 PM UTC
Upt'North said :-
Ta Ed,I'll take a look at them. I've got a Snap On AF quarter inch socket set I've had for about 40 years but can't justify their prices for DIY occasional use. They were tools that made me money so it was an easy decision. Just need some metric sockets so I can use that on the bike. Might look for some quarter inch JIS bits too. Ta again.
18/2//2019 11:16:23 AM UTC
Ren - The Ed¹ said :-
I've been very impressed with my Halfords Professional tools. I don't know how they compare price wise with the US Pro stuff though.
18/2//2019 9:54:18 AM UTC
Upt'North said :-
Thanks Pete, I'm after a few deep metric quarter inch drive sockets to get into my nether regions. They're on Ebay amongst other sites and seem OK and the feedback seems positive. Thanks for your insight.
I was thinking maybe might be worth paying the extra for Facom or Proto but the prices are a bit daft for sockets that are really only for just incase moments. Can't order anything for a day or two yet anyway so I will ponder a little longer.........I'm starting to sound like the Ed.
17/2//2019 1:18:44 PM UTC
Pocketpete said :-
They used to do big tool holding cabinets for bae systems really nice storage systems on wheels really well made massive boxes could be electrically powered to move them about. But the tools were all from cincinnati tool and die.
The machines we used were all made by cincinati milacron.

Didnt even know they still existed.
17/2//2019 12:41:47 PM UTC
Upt'North said :-
Anybody bought US PRO branded tools?
Just wondering about the quality.
Thanks in advance.
16/2//2019 4:58:27 PM UTC
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