Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Well that wasn't quite as easy as I thought

So the bike has now arrived after quite a bit of stuffing around and alot more time than expected.  First of all the PO promised to drop it off to a bike shop in Ballina so they could fix the brake, fit some blinkers and put on a new rear tyre.  After that it should have been roadworthy and I could then ride it home to Newcastle.  After a week or so of it not being delivered I realised the owner had a bit too much other stuff going on.  The bike shop offered to go and pick up the bike for a fee so I figured that was a good idea since I was just taking the word of the owner so far.

So I get a phone call from the owner of the bike shop who has driven up to pick up the bike.  He sounds a bit pissed off and isn't too positive on the bike.  Turns out he got booked for speeding on his way up - not my fault and he was still helping me out.  He listed all the things wrong with the bike and told be that he wouldn't pay anything like what I was paying for it.  He suggested that the bike would need at least $800 work to get it rego'ed.  I rang up the owner and told him that it wasn't looking too good and that I wasn't keen on a bike that needed that much work.  2 minutes later I had a new price that was good enough for me to go with.

So at this stage I had a bike that I liked the sound of.  I'd saved enough money to be able to afford the repairs.  And I had an adventure planned to ride the bike home.  All good.  Then I get a call from the shop.  The quote comes to a bit over $1600 to fix up the bike for rego.  Once they got it back to the shop there were a lot more little things that needed doing and the parts were almost half the price.

It needed the whole front brake rebuilt, two new tyres, a chain and sprockets, 3 new blinkers (at $30 a pop!) and then the front forks rebuilt.  Most of the labor was being taken up with things that I can happily do myself and that just ticks me off.  It's not the shop's fault, though the quote has come in at double the original amount, as this is just a bit of an old neglected bike.  The only solution was to fork out the money to have it delivered home and just do the work myself.  The shop put on two new tyres and got the thing running and I ordered all the other bits and pieces from the States.  Turns out the nice O ring chain that I had left from the DRZ is a perfect fit for the XL.  That alone saved me a heap of cash.

So now the bike has been delivered.  The spare knobbly tyre went missing on the trip and when I got home the bike was leaning against the house as it had no stand.  Other than that it was all pretty much as expected.  A bit rougher in some areas, but obviously not abused, just a bit neglected.  Should come up really well.

Now I just have to wait for the parts from the States and then have my adventure once it's registered.  And you all know how much I hate working on bikes : )

This is what the bike looks like right now, with me half way through fixing a few things... How retro is that front guard?  A cool old look, but not really what I'm after.  It wont last too long :)

So here's the famous RFVC 600cc engine.  That cover on the side of cylinder head is for what is referred to as the Burp chamber.  There is a small fifth valve in the head that is triggered by the kick starter, which allows you to kick over the engine with much lower compression as it escapes through the valve into this chamber.  Honda later realised it wasn't worth the hassle and most guys just disconnect the cable anyway.

 How good do these tyres look?  Apparently they are similar to what the BMWs use and are meant for 70/30 road/dirt so they should suit me.  Now all I need is to track down a much smaller front rim, possibly a rear off another bike and have that ready to go for when I wear the front one out.  That said, I've only ridden about 500m so far, so it might take a bit.

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