The outside of a motorbike engine seen up close near the exhaust

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If It Ain't Broke...

Blog Date 6 September 2021

I amaze myself at times, I really do.

Sharon and oneself will be away soon. As is my way I have been reaching appropriate flapping level 7 out of 10. Is Sharon's bike ready? Is my bike ready? What paperwork will we need? Which boots shall I take? All this and much more besides need to be flustered and worried over to ensure I achieve the correct stress levels. How would I know I'm enjoying myself if I'm not panicking?

Ren pulls a silly stupid moron face
This is about the right level of panic and worry for a trip I reckon.

Last week I changed the oil and filter on the 500. I went to Sharon's on the 500. I put the 500 back in the shed and vowed to leave it be, it is fine, all is well so don't use it then you can't break it. The long suffering 125 was put under more duress while the 500 remained in functional stasis in the biscuit tin.

Today I shall check the tyres, adjust the chain and check the lights. All good, all done. Wait, wassat? The right hand indicator stalk is cracked. The usual place around the mounting bolt. Grrrrr! I dropped the bike off roading a year or so back. I bet it stressed the plastic and now it's starting to give way with 10,000 miles of wobbling.

Calm yourself boy. It is but a mere indicator stalk. Not a deal breaker, you don't need to cancel the trip. Just gaffer tape it up, it'll see you through Northern Ireland then you can sort it properly when you get back. Meh, I got time, I'll bodge it better, be reet then.

I have to remove the side panel and fairing panel to get to the bolt on the back of the stalk. Pain the ass these fancy plastics I tell ya. I free enough wire to hang the stalk down and get to work. 2 short pieces of steel wire, cooked over the blow torch and pressed into the plastic across the crack - check. A few scores and holes made with a hot tiny watchmakers screwdriver to give the epoxy a key - check. A thick slavering of epoxy all around - check. Specially made bolt and stand-off to avoid pressure on the epoxy - check. That'll do.

The fixed indicator covered in epoxy resin
There, fixed, sorted, fine. Calm down and breathe, breathe...

With the indicator back on I turn the key to ensure everything is working. Ahhhh good. Lights - check, engine runs - check. Oh? The fuel gauge is flashing. 

Crap. Poop. Flip. Anchor. Stunt. I must have disturbed a wire. Oh FFS Ren! If it ain't broke don't fix it, ESPECIALLY when you have an impending trip. I sulk with a brew for 5 minutes. I mean - it don't matter, I can live without a fuel gauge, I've not had one on the 125 for what... 30,000 miles? More probably. Sharon's 250 needs fuel every 160 miles so if I fill up with her I'm golden. 

I trace wires. I remove the opposite side panel and fairing. I jiggle and shake connectors. Idiot. Pillock. Plonker. Luckily the bike runs but I can't believe what a stupid moronic nincompoop I am. I should JUST HAVE GAFFER TAPED THE DAMN THING!.

CB500X with all fairings removed
STOCK IMAGE! I am not in the mood to take snaps but this is the state of play...

After tea with a face like a spoiled brat being made to tidy his room, I put the bike back together. What a dolt. Don't break the fairing Ren. What an imbecile. Maybe I should look under the tank? NO!!! Don't make it worse than it already is. What a simpleton. You said it yourself, leave it be, if it ain't broke don't fix it. What a dimwit. I hate myself I really do. I am my own worst enemy.

I kit up. I'd promised not to ride the bike but I want to be sure that having no fuel gauge won't mess with the blooming computer's algorithm. It comes as some relief to open the throttle into the 60 and feel the bike surge forwards. It's just a shame the dash is constantly flashing at me and the trip meter, average MPG and all that vanish when the computer is desperately insisting I'd best find a petrol station real soon.

Damn and blast! Well I guess it don't matter. I'll be fine. I'm not gonna run outta fuel but I do know it'll nag away at me through the trip. Maybe I'll get used to it? I suppose when I get back I can look forward to learning how the dash comes out. Great. Fab. Pffffft. IDIOT!

Remember today's lesson that I never seem to learn -  if it ain't broke don't fix it.
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Wait. When I brake hard the gauge shows 1 bar? Loose wire I bet, the inertia will be moving the wires such that they connect. 

Wait. 1 bar? If the connection is made why 1 bar and not 3, 4, 5 or all 6? No. No...
Oh for all that is both good and evil in the world - NO!!!
I pull into Asda and put 14 litres into the tank. Switch on the ignition - all 6 bars show clearly. I was just low on petrol.

What a Richard Cranium.

The CB500X showing a full tank on the dash
Yeah, that.


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Reader's Comments

Upt'North ¹ said :-
Buffoon.
Upt'North.
09/09/2021 10:47:48 UTC
Ian Soady¹ said :-
The daft things are often the ones you remember. Like the time I let my younger brother have a shot on my Tiger 955i. He returned it popping and cracklig after an hour or so and when it had cooled down I wheeled it into the garage.

A day or two later I fancied a ride. Push the Triumph out of the garage, switch on and press the starter. Nothing happened. Lights on dash were fine so I assumed there was a problem somewhere. After an hour or so whipping (hah!) the panels off etc my eyes alighted on the kill switch. Now I never ever use these being brought up on bikes lacking such fripperies. It was in the "off" position, John having presumably stopped the engine with it.

Laugh? I didn't.......
09/09/2021 12:27:28 UTC
Ren - The Ed¹ said :-
The old kill switch eh Ian. I too have seen motorcycles stripped and searched all for the sake of a kill switch. It was a common trick among my, ahem, "friends" back in the day. So much so that it was the first thing we all checked when an apparent issue arose.

So much so a new ruse had to be found. This time a small piece of random Sellotape was applied to the horn button of one victim. Upon turning the ignition on with the key an immediate, jarring and startling "PARP!" caused the victim to almost drop the bike. On and off went the ignition, "PARP!" "What the hell is going on?" Jiggle wires. "PARP!" Remove seat and look at more wires. "PARP!" Get tool out to remove the tank. "PARP!" Fits of giggles and knowing looks.

"Before you call the RAC pal, just check you're horn switch"
"You $£~@! *&^%ing !!"£$"
09/09/2021 14:02:51 UTC
nab301 said :-
Don't be so hard on yourself Ren ! I 've gone searching for glasses that I'm wearing , paid legitimate import charges on imported goods and later incorrectly convinced myself that I've been scammed , dropped screws and nuts , searched for ages without being able to find them , given up , then while clearing up, found said missing screws attached to the base of the magnetic tray that I'd been using to keep all the other removed screws etc safe...

Nigel
09/09/2021 14:17:56 UTC
Bogger said :-
Ren. I was under the impression you had a modicum of common sense.

It appears I was so so wrong.

Ah well.

Bogger

p.s enjoy your trip, oh and don't forget to take your bike.
09/09/2021 19:50:40 UTC
Bogger said :-
I've just clocked those 'hand guards' again.

Please, please buy some proper ones. They are an afront to the motorcycling world.

Bogger.............just saying like
09/09/2021 19:53:57 UTC
Ren - The Ed¹ said :-
nab301 - I suppose it's not just me. Thanks.

As for you Bogger! Swine. I'll be walking along the A6 while Sharon scoots off into the distance thinking to myself "I'm sure I've forgotten something, I'm sure. Helmet - check, change of undies - check, keys - check. What could it be? And why are my feet hurting? And why does sat nav say it's going to take me 3 days to get there?"

The hand guards are my crowning glory, my magnum opus, my masterpiece and the jewel in the crown. Envy, it's a terrible thing, I'll allow you to copy my perfection so long as you credit me as your inspiration.
09/09/2021 20:10:06 UTC
ROD¹ said :-
Have a good trip Ren.
I will look forward to reading of your adventures.

Is it the Northern Ireland trip?
09/09/2021 20:12:54 UTC
Upt'North ¹ said :-
Bogger said it, so we don't have too.
Well done Bogger.
LOL, don't forget the bike!
Upt'North.
09/09/2021 20:41:46 UTC
Bogger said :-
Hang on a second. I'm sure you just replied.......keys, check.

Another first then, or perhaps not?!

Bogger
10/09/2021 11:44:31 UTC

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