Looking along a long straight road amidst lush green farmland
small image motorcycle loaded up with touring gear Home Contribute Contact BAT Chit-Chat BAT Facebook Page BAT Stickers! Ren's Biking Blog Sharon's Biking Blog Guest Posts Bike Reviews Bike Gear Reviews Bike Tips Travel Stories Travel Tips Repair And Restoration Interesting Links Support BAT Calculators And Converters

Posts And Comments

The home page only lists the latest 10 posts. This page lists them all at 50 posts per page. This is just a tool to allow you to catch up on any posts you might have missed - that's all.


Daytona Lady Star GTX Boot Versus Daytona Lady Pilot GTX Boots & Initial Review Of Pilots jfgarro said :-
Because of my short height (I'm 5'1"), when the bike is a little too high for my liking, I use mainly the soles and the fingers of my feet to balance it. Comparing the Lady Star with the Pilots, which one has the higher sole? Because like Sharon said, every mm counts...

No Adventure Too Small Ren - The Ed said :-
I suspect the problem with some of the magazines is the journalists live in a bubble. When you've had a top of the range fully tricked out all singing all dancing adventure/sports/touring/off road or whatever model on test for 3 months coming "back down" to a 500 run of the mill middle of the road bike must be something of an anticlimax.

It's not across the board, it's not everyone. There are some magazines and websites that take into account people's budgets and other factors.

When it comes to riders of course you will meet the odd snob who will look down on smaller bikes or cheaper kit but for the most part Sharon's and my own experience has been pretty good. The 125s and Sharon's 250 tend to start good conversations rather than elicit snooty looks. My 500 is rather too average to warrant further discussion.

Motorcycling and the adventure aspect of it are personal things. You can only try to do what you can with what you got and enjoy it is much as you can.

No Adventure Too Small Christopher said :-
Yes, good advice....Create your own 'Adventure', On whatever bike you care to!, No matter where you go, or what you do....its unique to you.... Just don't go looking at certain mainstream bike magazines for 'ideas' though!.....(or should that be all bike magazines?), because,(according to them), unless you have the latest BMWGS1200(A of course!)or KTM 1290 (to name but two), both with all the gizmos,(and on P.C.P too of course!) such as Sat Nav,alloy 'top of the range' panniers, traction control etc, etc, oh,and you will need an 'Adventure Jacket' costing at least £1000 too, then, you have no chance of having said adventure.......Hence, take no notice of all that, and go out and do your own thing....Enjoy

No Adventure Too Small Ren - The Ed said :-
HA! Like I did when I firstly got lost in Spain then found the road was closed. Sometimes you've just got to improvise.

No Adventure Too Small Rod said :-
No! We are not trying to scare people off adventures. When things go wrong, that can make the adventure better, and more memorable.
So just go and enjoy the adventure, but be prepared to change your plans now and then.

No Adventure Too Small Ren - The Ed said :-
Oii! Don't you be scaring people off adventures with your tales of woe!

There's a balance to be struck. It is important that not EVERYTHING is planned to the last detail and to take the risk that things might not pan out quite as you'd hoped. When things go a little awry and you come up with a solution then there's a sense of achievement, of triumph over adversity. But if lots and lots of things go wrong it can feel like a disaster, that you're a failure and never want to leave the safety of the living room again.

Some people have to really push the boundaries to get excited about anything, for some just going to the shops is terrifying. While an adventure to the next town might not make the news it might be every bit as thrilling as a fortnight in Morocco for some.

I'm thankful to hear it's not just me that has had a few things go wrong.



Kawasaki Z300 Test Ride Review Ren - The Ed said :-
Kawasaki - any colour you like as long as it's green. Well you might get a black one occasionally and there was a red one once...

Being local to the area if you'd have come off the motorway 1 mile later and gone to where the football stadium is then you'd have spent a little less on fuel. That's the power of local knowledge. Motorway services sure know how to sting.

Kawasaki Z300 Test Ride Review Keith m said :-
Bolton M61 services was for fuel only. I was heading for my overnight stop at family just outside of Buxton. I didnt want to have navigate the Manchester ring road and worry if I and enough fuel. At £1.46ltr it must be very special fuel!.
The z400 looks like a fine bike. They have reduced the weight increased the power so probably better than the Honda cbr500. But colours please Kawasaki.


No Adventure Too Small Ian Soady said :-
The things I remember most about my "adventures" are when whatever plans I had were sidetracked by events. Desperately trying to get things back on track, fraught diagnostic sessions by the side of the road, long detours caused by blocked passes etc - they seem to be most prominent to me, like Rod's wild camping.

One trip to France I arrived on a Sunday morning off the ferry without having filled up with petrol. Rural France was then (still is in many areas) devoid of filling stations which open on Sundays so I had to stop overnight after 100 miles or so. As it happened, the village I stopped in was having a festival (celebrating what I don't know) so I spent a very enjoyable afternoon & evening mixing with the locals, enjoying their cider and street barbecues, and visiting normally closed buildings.

No Adventure Too Small Rod said :-
What is an adventure???
I think anything that gets you excited or just makes you feel good.
So I guess that is every time I get on the bike!
Last year I went down to Spain for just under 2 weeks, and although I had planned my route and camp sites on the way through France, it all went wrong when the M25 QE2 crossing was closed for 3 hours making my arrival at the Dover port nearly 3 hours late. The ferry company got me on to an alternative crossing free of charge, as they knew of the M25 closure, but this put me 4 hours behind time when I got into France.
This was November, so days are shorter than the summer months, and there was no way I would get to my camp site near Le Mans before dark.
After trying two camp sites which were closed (camp sites tend to close September in France) I decided to camp just outside a small village next to an area which the village used for their recycling.
Camping wild although not planned made this more of an adventure for myself.

Discovering The Picos Ren - The Ed said :-
Cheers martin. It is good to see that people read this and enjoy it. The travelogues aren't asking questions or seeking opinions and as such they don't elicit many comments. This often leaves me wondering if people do read them so thank you.

Discovering The Picos martin said :-
I have followed your Spanish trip with great interest, great roads and scenery. Interesting pics too. Your writing style is very entertaining, I will look forward to reading more.

Fake NGK Plug Cap? Ren - The Ed said :-
I've been happy with the City Pro on the front of the CBF125 and I'll stick one on the rear when the present one has worn out. That is if the bike lasts that long.

Kawasaki Z300 Test Ride Review Ren - The Ed said :-
Cheers Keith. There are good scientific reasons the parts don't fuse together at high speeds...I'm sure. I suspect oil has something to do with it.

M61 services Bolton? You were but a mere mile or so as the crow flies from my humble abode. What on earth would persuade you to visit Anderton/Rivington/Bolton North services? It's hardly a hub of culture and entertainment.

Anyhow Dumfries to Bolton? My CBF125 has been to Dumfries and then beyond to Ayr and survived. It had a night's rest then went to Fort William then another rest and on to Ullapool.

Glad you're liking the Z300. I am aware a certain lady has her eye on the newer Z400 but I think she'll need to rob a bank before she can afford it.

Kawasaki Z300 Test Ride Review Sharon said :-
Keith,
Thanks for the update. Fantastic to hear of someone else making the most of their smaller bikes.
You said you don't think Kawasaki designed this bike for long trips.
I disagree in so much it is a false perception of many that smaller bikes would struggle in longer adventures. I have just taken my Kawasaki Z250 to Spain and like your Z300 it handled it with no problem.
The Z250SL regularly returns around 90 to 100 mpg.
Hope you have many more adventures on this bike.

Fake NGK Plug Cap? Borsuk said :-
Way ahead of you boss.
Also ordered new wheel bearings. Took the hit to the wallet and replaced my tyres with Michelin City Pro’s ( £64 total from Pneus online and £30 fitting), and was shown the front wheel bearing was on its way out so I will replace It next week. Will do the aft one next leave as it is okay and I was faffing about enough getting the wheel back on after changing the tyres. I was losing confidence in the originals,the amount that the tread extended to the side wall was minimal and the cross section was nowhere near the profile of most motorbike tyres. Looked more like a thin car tyre, Model T Ford type. The actual wear since new is not a lot over 5000 km, would probably last forever.



Kawasaki Z300 Test Ride Review Keith m said :-
Yeah true. I just can't believe all those parts don't just fuse together at such speeds.

Kawasaki Z300 Test Ride Review Rod said :-
Hi Keith m,
It sounds like you are enjoying the z300!
As Ren said in the opening review, the z300 is not anymore revvy than most other bikes in this class. My inazuma 250 is reving at over 8500 at 70mph, and at 75 it is reving at exactly 9000!!!

Kawasaki Z300 Test Ride Review Keith m said :-
A quick z300 update.
Back in mid May I took the z300 to Northern Ireland for NW200 road races. Kreiga luggage strapped on we did a total milage of 1400miles in a week. Which for someone who uses this bike for commuting and ride out on Sundays is a huge milage.
The bike was superb,it easily and happily held 70mph on the motorway.My only concern at 70mph is the engine is pulling 8000rpm. I know its 5000rpm off the red line but its still 8000rpm and I would have liked a temperature gauge. I should have done some fuel figures but didnt. I know that from Dumfries to M61 services at Bolton it returned about 70mpg.I didnt suffer from any aches from shoulders or wrists but my knees were screaming but I think thats my knees and the fact that I ride with my toes on the footrests.
I doubt Kawasaki designed this bike to do this but it did without complaint.



Fake NGK Plug Cap? Ren - The Ed said :-
Gerra new one when you can, WD40 ain't a permanent fix.

Fake NGK Plug Cap? Borsuk said :-
Riding along today and the engine started faltering, been on it several times this week and it has run fine so far. Initially assumed full problem but tank shows half full on the gauge and same on the trip meter. Hmmm, what’s changed, it’s piddling down. Racked brain and remembered this thread. Quick look at spark plug cap and yes it has perished. Quick squirt with WD 40, yes I carry a tin in my top box tool kit sad B that I am, and off we trundled.

Glad I read this.

Z Day...Hello Kawasaki Z 250 SL Ren - The Ed said :-
Hi Andrew Mifsud. We have lowered Sharon's forks a little, probably only 10-15 mm though as the top of the forks meets the bars. Bar risers would allow further movement.

Tread carefully. Changing suspension here and there is ok but making larger changes can cause problems, even become dangerous.

Dropping the forks too far can cause the forks to bottom out against the lower triple clamp. It will bring the rake in which could lead to instability. Dropping the rear could also cause bottoming out.

I know of a Street Triple that cannot go over a speedbump...

Before you spend lots of cash you really must make the effort to try and sit on one. Where do you live?

Z Day...Hello Kawasaki Z 250 SL Andrew Mifsud said :-
Hi Sharon, thanks for the advice. My daughter is a short legged 4'11" so I am not sure if she will reach even with a lowering kit. When yours was fitted, did they lower the forks in their yokes at all? I reckon with risers the front end could also be lowered around 30-40mm. At the back end I found the same Lust racing kits but I also found a fully adjustable kit which CLAIMS to dop it up to 100mm-
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Ninja-250SL-Lowering-Link-Links-Kit-Adjustable-2014-2015-2016-4-Inches-250-SL/172109417235?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2060353.m1438.l2649

There are no Z250SL anywhere near us to test so we may have to buy, get it delivered and THEN try lowering. I am curious as to whether your front end was lowered too.

Good riding. :)



Long Term CBF 250 Review silversurfur said :-
can any one tell me the headlight size dimension of the Honda cbf250 2006 please ,. doriongry@live.com

DIY Tyre Fitting Ren - The Ed said :-
I'll delete the advert when I get home. I don't do too badly for spam overall.

DIY Tyre Fitting Ross said :-
I was feeling quite 'pumped-up' about this comment but now I realise it's just spam I feel quite 'deflated'!

www.mobiletyresnot4us.com



DIY Tyre Fitting Ian Soady said :-
Giant scissors called for methinks.......

Long Term Review of the Honda SLR 650 - By Ren Withnell Ren - The Ed said :-
I've never come across this specific problem but I know how the starter works. I'd be looking at the starter clutch. Unfortunately this is probably on the back of the generator flywheel which can be a dog to remove unless you have the correct tool.

Before you do that I've just had a look at the fiche. On the left side crankcase there's a cover for the starter gears. Pop that off and have a gander. If all seems well then you're into the starter clutch and the flywheel.

SLR650 left crankcase cover

Lost Off The Ferry Ren - The Ed said :-
I often tell Sharon there's no such thing as lost. You might not find the most efficient route and discover some amazing places by accident though.

I found the French Alps by getting lost. That was quite a discovery.

Royal Enfield 500 Classic Test Ride Review Ren - The Ed said :-
Cheers. If you get the Pegasus be sure to let us know how you get on.

CBF 125 All Better, But WHY? Ren - The Ed said :-
Hi Gonzalo. When this happened to me it was a good while ago.

As stated in the post I removed the pump and replaced it and all was fine and has been since. The bike now has 74,000 miles on the clock with the same pump from new. I'd suggest removing and draining the pump as a starting place.

The pumps have a reputation on some of the models (2010 if I recall) of going awry. I'm sure your research has brought this up - if not look for it.

Check the obvious! I have had 2 spark plug caps fail although this was worse in the rain than the dry. That also caused poor tickover. Check the valve clearances. In fact ensure you give the bike a thorough service (plugs, filters etc)

Hope you find a solution.

CBF 125 All Better, But WHY? Gonzalo said :-
Hello Mate, did it happen again? Im having exactly the same issue inmy cbf 125 2009, i drove from spain to Iran with it with no issued and today it started “kangarooing” in the Heat. No really genuine Honda mechanics here. So would appreciate any advice, thank you!

Royal Enfield 500 Classic Test Ride Review said :-
Great read and as I'm contemplating the Pegasus edition for no other reason than I love real bikes and riding them I was really impressed with the threads as well as the write up - thank you - much appreciated !

Lost Off The Ferry Bill said :-
Ren there is no such thing as getting lost, it is just a visit to places you did not know in advance you were going to visit. Some of the best biking roads and places I have found have often been by accident.

Long Term Review of the Honda SLR 650 - By Ren Withnell Max said :-
Hi Ren,recently I noticed the starter motor spins freely & does not engage the transmission gear or rather the clutch properly. When its does it give out a loud metallic sound.Please advise on what need to be done.Thanking you in advance.

Lost Off The Ferry Ren - The Ed said :-
I'm glad it's not just me then.

I do have my mobile phone that "does" navigation and does it acceptably well. There's 2 reasons why I don't use it ALL the time.

Firstly despite my regular cock-ups I am actually quite good at navigation. It is a skill I have developed over the years. As Ian suggests I use pointers like the sun (if it bothers to show) as well as instinct. If I always used sat nav I'd lose these skills.

Secondly my set up to use the phone as sat nav is "sub optimal". Because I don't use it all the time I haven't made the effort to get things just right. I have a cheap zip up case on the bars and if it's raining despite its claims it's not waterproof. I've no power to the case either so the phone only lasts about half an hour.

I'm still resistant to sat nav. Maybe I'm being old school and stupid. Maybe I find it distracting. Maybe...maybe it's just too easy and I like making life hard for myself. Maybe I'll get over it.

Lost Off The Ferry Bill said :-
Ian your story reminded me of
Traveling in Germany pre sat nav days with direction in tank bag top.
Directions said head to Saint somewhere and left at T junction, arrived at Saint somewhere several laps of the village later still no T junction . Finally spotted a local took the map to him and lots of pointing (as I have no German and he had no English) after some more pointing and arm waving the penny dropped. We were in Saint somewhere in the valley we should of been Saint somewhere on the hill almost 100 KLM away so now a long ride back to the fork in the road where we should of gone right not left to the place with the same name.
Also remember a T junction in southern Ireland where both left and right were signposted to the same place :-)

Lost Off The Ferry Ian Soady said :-
That made me laugh. Despite my vast(?) experience of continental bike travel, the time I used the ferry to get to Spain & the Pyrenees I had a similar experience.

I happened to be first off the ferry on the mighty Norton Commando and set off in fine style. I was navigating via a map in the top of the tank bag and knew I should be heading for St somewhere - unfortunately it was on a fold of the map so couldn't see the full name. Anyway a couple of miles out of Bilbao I saw signs to St Something so assumed I was on the right track as I thundered through the countryside vaguely wondering why the gaggle of GSXRs and R1s whose riders had told me they were also making for the Pyrenees hadn't shot past me.

After about 20 miles it struck me that as the Pyrenees were to the east, I should be seeing the Bay of Biscay to my left. So why was it glinting at me over the right hand side of the bars?

Of course I was going in entirely the wrong direction so had to turn round and retrace my wheeltracks. But it was a nice sunny day and I found a decent hotel near Pamplona so not wasted time.

I had a compass fitted to the Triumph Tiger and it was very handy but unfortunately won't work with steel petrol tanks.

One day I'll tell you how I navigated through the centre of Turin by keeping the sun on my left.....

Keep the tales coming as I love to hear about other people's unfortunate experiences......

To The Ferry Ren - The Ed said :-
A book Ian? Sharon has something to do with them book thingies. I might have a go at writing one but...READING one!?! Howzat work?

As we've mentioned Rod Sharon and I aren't into "BIG" miles. A trip down and back through France would leave us with about 2 hours in Spain. The expensive sea crossing is, we deemed, a necessary evil.

To The Ferry Rod said :-
I also found the Spain Ferry boring when I tried it. I much prefer to save money with the Dover Calais crossing and enjoy a ride through France. I only use the toll motorways as a last resort, so it still works out cheaper to ride.

To The Ferry Ian Soady said :-
Of course you could have used your time profitably by reading a book or two......

Long Term Honda CBF 125 Review Ren - The Ed said :-
Yes you are lucky Tim - and perhaps unlucky too. You'll have missed out on things like having to entertain yourself with a lump of coal for weeks until the cold weather came and then you had to burn it to keep warm. What about the delights of trying to play football on a busy main road? And when you were at school in the countryside was there a supply of hard drugs to be found?

I dunno mate...hehe.

Rain Rider Ren - The Ed said :-
No he's right Ted. Thing is would you want to be riding a motorcycle through the Alaskan winter even if you did have the right clothing?

Long Term Honda CBF 125 Review Tim said :-
I just read your story in the link and all the beaches you visited are the places I used to ride to on my pushbike as a child. We used to camp in the valley at three cliffs bay and light a camp fire in the castle up on the cliff top. Makes me realize how much I take my surroundings for granted, what I see as everyday normality is a world away from someone brought up in the Midlands miles away from any coastline. I really am lucky!!!!

Rain Rider Ted said :-
I have a mate who lives in Wasilla, Alaska....he keeps telling me there is no such thing a bad weather, just bad clothing.

I'm still not sure if I believe him :-(

Motorway Miles And Muses Ren - The Ed said :-
Well Keith m the Z250R was sold here until the bike was updated to the 300. I expect the 250 is kept in production for markets around the globe with different licensing laws. It gets very complicated when looking at the bigger picture.

Aaaaw poor Snod! I don't think your shame is sufficient to warrant disemboweling yourself though. I'd suggest a cold shower and having a word with yourself will be enough.

Motorway Miles And Muses Snod said :-
Ahhh noooooo, seppuku for me :(

Motorway Miles And Muses Keith m said :-
That all looks very familiar to me. I think in Asia they do a 250 version of the z300.

Motorway Miles And Muses Ren - The Ed said :-
Aaaah Snod, you've made the classic mistake. You've confused the earlier Z250 which is a twin with the Z250SL single. Different bike with different fittings :(

Motorway Miles And Muses Snod said :-
There are other solutions, y'know.. Build quality is of course unknown!
www.chinaglobalmall.com/products/538285655583 ...

Older Items
image used for spacing
Valid HTML?

Admin
Classifieds