Saturday, May 1, 2010

Finally Went Out Riding

I finally managed to get out for a nice ride. It was rainy and overcast this morning but things seem to clear up just fine this afternoon. My parts never arrived and I guess I'm going to have to assume that they are lost somewhere in the postal system. I picked up some 5/16" fuel line and replace the leaky section but you could easily tell that the size was wrong. Too loose on the fittings requiring a worm hose clamp. I guess I'll just have to re-order some of the correct size fuel line. I did stop by the BMW dealer but they don't carry anything except the 5/16" size either. Looked at the new bikes but the only on that looked even a little interesting was the F650GS. Last week, I stopped by the old BMW dealer location to talk to the owner about my exhaust valve recession problem. It is now a Royal Enfield dealer and there were a number of them as well as a couple of older BMWs with side cars. Looked interesting.

Here, I'm parked at the scenic overlook in front of the Reichardt Building (formerly known as the Natural Science Building) on the University of Alaska Fairbanks campus. There wasn't much of a view to the south due to all of the storm clouds blocking the Alaska Range. I just don't seem to have a good eye for composition so I tend not to stop too ofter for pictures. I did stop at the museum and played around in their large, empty parking lot doing figure eights and low speed turns in both directions. Kind of rusty. The roads are generally clear but I did run into some wet sand in a corner on campus and the rear end slid out a couple of inches. It felt like a foot and really made me nervous. 

Headed out through the Goldstream Valley to Fox then back towards town on the Steese Highway. There were quite a few bikes out and about and everyone cheerfully waved. Even the sport bike crowd. I think everyone was glad that riding season has finally arrived. Filled up the tank on a rumor that there will be a lunch ride tomorrow afternoon with a bunch from church. Rain or shine.

Sunday Afternoon - In spite of the showers, 6 people on 5 bikes showed up for the ride this afternoon. We just went to the Monderosa which is near Nenana about 50 miles from Fairbanks towards Anchorage. Some of the best burgers around and way more than I'm able to eat. The rain mostly threatened and except for a couple of light sprinkles, it was mostly dry. Two of the bikes didn't have any fairing or windshield and the riders were pretty cold upon arrival. No sunshine for most of the trip. The old BMW R100RT has pretty good coverage and I never even felt chilled. The bike has hand warmers but I have yet to use them. Maybe if it was really raining they would be nice to have. The electrical system on this old bike is pretty anemic and I don't think it can drive both the hand warmers and the headlight at the same time. I'll stick with the headlight until I can get an upgraded charging system installed. About 20 miles into the ride, the engine would generate a vibration like it was missing on one cylinder. After a few minutes, the vibration would go away back to the wonderful mechanical hum. No real loss of power but just the vibration. Last year, this also happened but it was pouring rain so I assumed that it was related to moisture. Today, it happened without the rain but only after the engine was under heavier load i.e. climbing hills. So maybe it's heat. Something to mull over the next month or so since I won't be able to ride.

On Wednesday, I will be headed into the hospital for a couple of days for some surgery. Recuperation may take a while and they said no lifting or straining.

6 comments:

SonjaM said...

Good for you. I wish you a save riding season. Cheers from sunny Vancouver. SonjaM

Unknown said...

Richard:

hope it's not something serious and wish you a speedy recovery. Maybe after a day or two of hospital food you would welcome that BIG hamburger, with fries and gravy of course.

nice to see you out on the bike.

bob
Wet Coast Scootin

RichardM said...

Canada seems to be the only place to get gravy with your fries. Most in my family look forward to that little bit of decadence on our many road trips through Canada especially if it is good gravy.

I'm working on a post related to the surgery but in summary, they are removing a bit of cancer. No bike riding for at least a month (so says the doctor).

Unknown said...

Richard:

here's hoping that your surgery is uneventful, as in smooooth.

didn't the DOC say to recoupe somewhere warmer, say Hawai'i

bob
Wet Coast Scootin

RichardM said...

My wife mentioned the same thing about needing to recuperate somewhere like Maui. A friend of mine chose to have a medical procedure done on the east coast then drove there. He wasn't allowed to drive back for a month. Maybe that is what I needed to do...

Thank you for the good wishes.

Unknown said...

Richard:

If you plan on going to Maui, make it next January, 2011. We had such a great time in Kona that we want to go back, but check out another island. we could meet up there. We were thinking Maui for a few days then hop back to Kona for a few more days.
This time I want to rent a jeep and drive the Saddle road, and have a picnic at South Point

bob
Wet Coast Scootin