Sadly, no big motorcycling adventures this weekend. We opted to do a challenging tandem cycling ride on Saturday and that pretty much did-in Miss Debbie for the balance of the weekend and took a lot of the wind out of my sails as well.
The majority of my motorcycling enjoyment came from giving some attention to the BMW R1100S and our infrequently ridden Harley-Davidson Wide Glide. Sorry, no special nicknames for the other bikes; they’re simply the BMW and the Wide Glide. More on that in the next blog entry.
The BMW had just gotten fresh oil and a new filter two weeks ago; however, the crush washer installed with the oil drain plug apparently didn’t seat correctly and did not want to be re-seated. That resulted in an annoying oil leak that could only be fixed by removing the bad one and installing a new one and losing about 1/2 the oil in the process. On the bright side, THIS oil change didn’t take long and lacked the drama from the one on Friday, 22 Jun I described in my blog back on 22 June. The Harley Wide Glide’s oil change was also uneventful, although I remain surprised that the 1,500cc (98 cu in) Harley’s two cylinder motor takes less oil than the 1,100cc BMW; weird.
The BMW also received a new set of spark plugs as the ones that were in the bike had a good 12,000 miles of use and, well, I just wanted to do something nice for the bike! It also received quite a few other inspections and adjustments; however, I saved the rear differential lubricant for another day. I still need to pull the cowls off, lift the tank and dig the K&N air filter out of the buried airbox for a cleaning and re-oil and replace the brake fluid but I’ll save that for a rainy day. Yes, that’s the airbox sitting behind the battery.
The Wide Glide was treated to a 10,000 mile oil change at 9,600 miles noting that Blue is the bike we’ve put most of our miles on since last July (7,800 or so) while the Wide Glide sat on the J&S workstand in the garage. Being “dino” based motor oil, it just seemed like it would be a good idea to go ahead and change out what was not some very old oil for a fresh fill with Mobil 1 for V-Twins, the same oil that went in the CVO. It will most likely get Formula+ or Redline in the transmission and primary in the next week or two along with a brake fluid flush.
I also needed to get some new rain gear for the commute as the 7-year old gear I’ve been using let me down again in a strong rain storm during my ride home this past Friday. It had leaked a little in the past, but this time the crotch seams only held out the water for about 15 minutes before the “boys” said, “what’s up with that” as my slacks and boxers started to get wet. My left leg along the outer pant seam weren’t far behind. Good thing I had on my Fieldsheer wind/water liner as it kept the water leaching through my rain jacket from getting to me. We’ve been pretty happy with the Harley-Davidson rain gear we picked up for Blue, so I decided to hop on the Wide Glide and pay a visit to Hellbender H-D to see if they had a rain suit that would work well for the daily commute.
I think I tried on 8 different suits before settling on the “Ride Ready Packable Rainsuit“. It seemed to have the right mix of features like gusseted pant legs, a vented back flap on the jacket, big sleeve openings with full width velcro closures, etc.
It was really nice to be back on the Wide Glide, as it’s a much lighter and more nimble bike than Blue, even with the really long steering trail and all that front wheel flop. It’s also nice to have the wind in my face and as much as I enjoy riding Blue with Debbie, when it’s just me the Wide Glide wins hands-down for pure joy on the back roads by byways.
There was some hope that we might get out on Blue for a Sunday ride; however, Debbie just wasn’t up for it and we both had things to do around the house. I used part of my time at home to give the BMW a much-needed deep cleaning. That poor bike never gets washed when there’s rain in the near-term forecast coming out of a weekend and I don’t think we’ve had a dry week in several months. Hence, the BMW was looking pretty sad, especially around the mechanicals.
So, that was about it for our weekend of motorcycling. I feel an overnight trip coming! Perhaps a late Friday run down to Panama City Beach, a weekend of tandem cycling & motorcycling in Chattanooga, a trip over to the Barber Motorsports Museum in Birmingham or the Wheels Through Time museum in the Maggie Valley with an overnight in Gatlinburg.