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!

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?

What An Easter Weekend It's been a peculiar Easter this time for Ren. Definitely not the usual script.
Coming Home How did Ren never realise what a great road the A5 is? Anyway, he'd best get home.
The Ikea Effect, Breathlessly. Ren is getting Zen as well as realising he's not the man he still thinks he used to be. Is appreciation relative to effort?
Wiring Loom Mysteries It's a bird's nest of tangled wires for Pete. They're only extra lights but it looks far more complicated than it should.
Getting To Gwern Ren is hoping this trip goes better than the last one. Sharon has been replaced by aliens. Just another ordinary weekend then.
Capel Curig Camping The convenience of Wales and the company of friends brings Sharon and Ren back once more.
Fog Light Attachment CB500X A cheap foglight mount for the CB500X? Pocketpete is playing with wires, nuts and bolts. Farkling.
80k Service CBF125 As Ren's 125 gets older it seems the servicing gets easier. It's the value of experience on what is otherwise a practically valueless motorcycle.
CB500X Fender Extender Pocketpete motorcycle blinging carries on. This time a simple and practical piece of plastic might help keep the bike clean.
Speed Limiters Or How To Lose Friends Times they are a-changing and the people won't like it. Speeding could one day become a thing of the past.
See More What's New

Latest Posts

The Ikea Effect, Breathlessly. Mr C said :-
We often take for granted the splendour of our own country.
24/4/2019 10:50:38 PM UTC
What An Easter Weekend Rod said :-
I took a trip to the Peak District on my longest ride over Easter, and the roads were not that busy.
The wife came out as pillion twice over the weekend, and the BM has the approval of she who must be obeyed, so it looks like the BM is a keeper.
24/4/2019 9:15:25 PM UTC
What An Easter Weekend Ren - The Ed said :-
It's a helluva road that Hardknott innit. Scared the poop outta me, I'm glad I was on the 125. You still away... anywhere nice?
24/4/2019 8:19:57 PM UTC
Sharon's Biking Blog Sharon said :-
Hi Kenny,

Always good to hear from a fellow Kawasaki Z250SL owner. Hope your new purchase will give you miles of smiles too. Let me know how you get on with it.

My tank bag and givi tankring was a rare think indeed, rarer than hen's teeth, in so much it was a gift bought for me by Ren.

So I will double check with him but I am pretty sure it was the BF14 model. This is usually listed for the Ninja 300.
24/4/2019 6:29:59 PM UTC
What An Easter Weekend Bob said :-
Hardknot Pass in the Vitara. 1 in 3 grades and blind summits followed by hairpin bends - at one point I ended up putting it into low ratio gear so that I could use the engine in descent mode because the brakes were beginning to stink.
It'll be good to be out on the KLX when I get back.
24/4/2019 5:58:05 PM UTC
Sharon's Biking Blog Kenny said :-
I read your excellent review of the Z250SL, and have bought one myself.

I noticed that you listed on the review that had purchased the Givi tanklock ring. Do you by any chance know which one it is, as I checked both the official Givi site and various other websites (i.e. sportbikeshop.co.uk) none of which actually tell me which to go for!
24/4/2019 4:24:10 PM UTC
Journey Into The Unknown Ian Soady said :-
Hi Pete, it sounds as though you're recovering well even if you are suffering from double posting.

My father was a senior cop in County Durham and decided he should go through the Class 1 training as all his "lads" had done (they rushed around the county in souped up Triumph 2.5pi estate cars attending all the serious incidents). He would come home from these sessions shaking after being instructed to overtake round blind bends, break all the speed limits by a huge margin, and offer no quarter to any other vehicle. "Making progress" they called it.

After these experiences he decided to let others do the driving. He always said that as they were investigating murders and the like, the victim could wait an extra few minutes for them to arrive.....

Having said that, he taught me to ride and drive, and I still remember many of the things he taught me - outmoded though some of it is these days. He was always a great enthusiast for smooth progress.
24/4/2019 4:07:24 PM UTC
Journey Into The Unknown Pocketpete said :-
I was 'police advanced roadcraft' trained. Part of which was avoiding 'hazards'. It kept me safe for 35 years.

Roadcraft dictates left of centre of the left lane. Keeping sufficient distance from the kerb to avoid grids and wide enough from parked cars to avoid doors being opened.

Camber should make you keep left. But none of this helps when another car or bike is on your side of the road on a bend.

What I would say is that the current methods of training cbt and test preparation are an equal to my police training. If you ignore that half my 6 weeks of police training was on convoy groups, escort duties and pursuits. These have little use for normal biking.

But accidents happen that's the nature of the beast.
24/4/2019 2:17:50 PM UTC
Journey Into The Unknown Pocketpete said :-
I was 'police advanced roadcraft' trained. Part of which was avoiding 'hazards'. It kept me safe for 35 years.

Roadcraft dictates left of centre of the left lane. Keeping sufficient distance from the kerb to avoid grids and wide enough from parked cars to avoid doors being opened.

Camber should make you keep left. But none of this helps when another car or bike is on your side of the road on a bend.

What I would say is that the current methods of training cbt and test preparation are an equal to my police training. If you ignore that half my 6 weeks of police training was on convoy groups, escort duties and pursuits. These have little use for normal biking.

But accidents happen that's the nature of the beast.
24/4/2019 2:17:41 PM UTC
Journey Into The Unknown Ren - The Ed said :-
My little spill was on a comparatively gentle bend to the left for myself, to the right for the rider that I collided with.

For myself left handers appear easier for 2 reasons. Firstly as Ian said it feels as though there's a big run off area when cornering to the left as there's all this extra tarmac on the opposite side - just in case. Of course this is lunacy. Secondly camber. The camber on most roads is with you on a left hander, against you on a right.

Upt'North. I quite agree modern training is far more thorough than it was 28 years ago when I did my test. That said complex road position theory is not really covered in detail for test level training. The general idea is to keep to the centre of the lane unless conditions and traffic dictate otherwise. Sharon's knowledge comes from her own desire to improve her riding, from asking lots and lots of questions not only of myself but other riders too, from looking at stuff online and simply gaining experience.
24/4/2019 1:54:54 PM UTC
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Latest Chit-Chat

Go To Chit-Chat Bob said :-
I'm in my late 40's Ren, the thing is since I got the KLX my milage has increased 50% or so - I just keep Riding and riding them! If I set out from the house for "a quick blast" I'll be out for 80 miles or so at least.
I think we're still a ways off from a practical electric motorcycle, but I am planning on building a long range electric bicycle. 250W legal motor but with 2KWH of battery should be good enough for 100 miles - the speed doesn't matter because it's a push-bike.
Upt'North - you're welcome to take a KLX out and see what you think of the nodded cam timing.

24/4/2019 9:51:43 PM UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
I don't know how old you are Bob. 15k per year? I'm doing about 20 on the 2 bikes I have but I don't plan on keeping either of them FOREVER! As and when the 125 moves on to the great winding road in the sky I'm seriously considering a small electric motorcycle. I'd want something equivalent to a 125 performance wise - but they presently seem to be equivalent to 50cc mopeds at "expensive but do-able" prices or equivalent to 500cc plus at extortionate prices.

I'd use the leccy bike for commuting and the like, and the 500 for my trips.

As for legislation. I still think we're a fair ways off the demise of petrol but then I am aware things move very fast indeed these days. Imagine a 25 year old Ren. He's heard of this internet thing and mobile phones. If you'd said we'd have hand held devices connected to the internet, the internet would be entirely and deeply entrenched into all our lives and I'd be running a small online magazine type thing then I'd have laughed you out of the room.


24/4/2019 8:43:40 PM UTC
Upt'North said :-
Bob, hmmmmmm, how can they be valueless when they obviously mean the world to you. That's got to be the most prized possession on earth. You keep riding and enjoying them, just think how much someone is going to lose in depreciation this year alone when they buy the new BMKTYAUKI adventure bike and add 5K's worth of extras too. I think you have a bargain friend and if some suit wearing pillock decides it not (Kawasaki) green enough somewhere down the line, so what, carpe diem friend, carpe diem.
P. S. CAN I HAVE A GO OF ONE.
Upt'North.
24/4/2019 7:19:56 PM UTC
Bob said :-
Do you worry about how much money you have invested in motorcycles?
I've got a lot of KLX250s, I got them because I ride a lot (about 15K a year) and there isn't a currently available model that I could replace them with, notwithstanding the CRF250L but that is heavier and has ABS- PAH!
So here I am with enough KLX250 to see me past retirement, but what about legislation? We hear all the time about tighter emissions controls, the end of petrol vehicle sale and all that. Also, what about spares? What if the big K stop selling whichever vital widget I need to keep the KLX running?
I look on it as insuring my continued enjoyment of the KLX, there's nothing else I want to own and ride and I have enough bikes and spares to cover any eventuality and I haven't spent money I don't have, they were all bought and paid for but now I worry I may have gone too far and all the money tied up represents a financial liability (if they become valueless due to legislation for example).

Just "spitballing" - I'd welcome your thoughts.

24/4/2019 6:11:13 PM UTC
Bob said :-
Do you worry about how much money you have invested in motorcycles?
I've got a lot of KLX250s, I got them because I ride a lot (about 15K a year) and there isn't a currently available model that I could replace them with, notwithstanding the CRF250L but that is heavier and has ABS- PAH!
So here I am with enough KLX250 to see me past retirement, but what about legislation? We hear all the time about tighter emissions controls, the end of petrol vehicle sale and all that. Also, what about spares? What if the big K stop selling whichever vital widget I need to keep the KLX running?
I look on it as insuring my continued enjoyment of the KLX, there's nothing else I want to own and ride and I have enough bikes and spares to cover any eventuality and I haven't spent money I don't have, they were all bought and paid for but now I worry I may have gone too far and all the money tied up represents a financial liability (if they become valueless due to legislation for example).

Just "spitballing" - I'd welcome your thoughts.

24/4/2019 6:11:12 PM UTC
Upt'North said :-
Melrose is a nice afternoon jaunt for us when you have that urge to do a few miles and eat ice cream. Very interesting Roman history too. Fancy that, they didn't stop at Hadrians wall afterall.

24/4/2019 5:03:19 PM UTC
Ian Soady said :-
My sister lives in Melrose in the borders and there are some gorgeous motorcycling roads in the area. A bit far for a day out for me though.....
24/4/2019 11:09:42 AM UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
I've ridden the road north out of Moffat heading to Peebles but not the north-easterly one I presume you're referring too. The A701 I've ridden is a splendid slab of blacktop so I'm figuring the A708 is too. I guess this is yet another one of those areas of the UK I've overlooked. Maybe I don't need to go abroad just yet, there's still too much of my home country to see.

As for naked Pan pictures - this is a family friendly website and such levels of debauchery ought not to be tolerated. But, errrr, if you could send me a few private pictures that would be smashing.
23/4/2019 9:02:57 PM UTC
Upt'North said :-
Or...... The other one is my garage with almost naked Pan in it. Bike Porn. Honestly.
Upt'North.
23/4/2019 4:37:15 PM UTC
Upt'North said :-
Not always full of bikes but usually two or three there normally, it's St.Mary's Loch near Selkirk yesterday. It was mainly an English crowd as it wasn't a BH North of the border. I can recommend the ride from Moffat to Selkirk using this as a tea/food stop. There's actually a better caff for food nearer to Selkirk but this is right on the Loch.
Upt'North.
23/4/2019 4:35:17 PM UTC
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