Sunday, September 30, 2007

More on the bike

I fitted some mesh to the radiator and oil cooler. The mesh was purchased from Super Cheap Autos when I bought the SV1000 for that bike and there was plenty left over. This was a simple job and looks okay. There is an advantage having a black bike; it is so easy to match things up.

Late in the afternoon I went for a ride through the suburbs into Wellington and got back home just before the rain started. The ride is really harsh and I think it is a combination of a firm seat that pushes the rider into the tank and the suspension set up. Once home I searched and couldn't find such hard comment on the seat but there was comment on suspension settings. I need the manual so I can work out how to check and set the suspension.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Speed Triple

This morning I delivered the SV1000S, with just over 10,000kms, to Motorad and took possession of a new 2007 Triumph Speed Triple.

I left Motorad around 9.45am and headed straight home. The ride was planned as the most critical for motor break-in and 10kms later I was home having followed a load and unload engine break-in routine. Guidance for this process is here: .

Had a coffee and waited for the bike to cool down and then went for another ride up north on the motorway and the a few circuits along the motorway between the Churton Park and Tawa on and off ramps. This provided an ideal way to load up the motor on acceleration and then engine break down. With 50kms on the odo I went home for lunch and to prepare for a longer run.

The first problem with bike is the speedo is reading in miles and gallons. To make matters worse the user manual didn't come with the bike and is on back order. I had earlier read a post on how to change the setting so opened up the site , found the information and reset the computer.

Early afternoon me and my new girl headed for the summit. We stopped there for only a few minutes and then headed to Martinborough. A brief stop in Martinborough and I found what looked like oil splashes down the sides of the motor. It appeared to be coming from the oil cooler. I checked the oil level and found that to be okay. I then headed back with an eye on the oil pressure light.

I stopped at the summit and acknowledged and couple of other motorcyclists. Then Deano arrived and we discussed the oil splashes. Deano worked out that it wasn't oil but a sticky substance that was used to pack the parts in and in particular the oil cooler assembly. With a feeling of relief I headed home, getting there at 3.00pm.

At 5.30pm Alan called to find out about the bike so I headed off to see him and then got back at 6.30pm. I put the bike in the garage with 254kms on the odo.

My thoughts on this bike:
  • Right decision - yes it is a very nice bike and has a wonderful motor.
  • Ride - too hard and bouncy on rough roads. I will have to look into suspension settings when I get the manual.
  • Riding position - I like the more upright position and the wider bars.
  • Handling - very sure footed and fun on the hill. Chicken strips on rear are thin.
  • Speed - I am certain I will ride this slower than the SV. It likes any speed whereas the SV didn't feel right until 110kph.
  • Wind - the little flyscreen seems to remove the wind load on the body and there is no turbulence around the helmet.

The bike is booked in for the first service on the 10th. I have a few kms to do yet.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Decision made

This afternoon I took a demo Triumph Speed Triple for a ride. My ride was from Motorad down the motorway, off at Newlands, through to Johnsonville, up home for a few photos and a comfort stop, back on to the motorway north, off at Tawa, back to Churton Park via the winding road and up onto the motorway, north again to Paremata, around the inlet, over Heywards and back to Motorad.

Thoughts: harder riding than the SV, needs a flyscreen fitted to keep the wind of the chest area, smooth power from 1500 revs and will pull from 1000 revs, power in any gear, responsive steering and a nice bike as well.

I got back to Motorad and the discussion centered on price for the new black 07 in the window. The deal I got on the SV as a trade and a reduction in list price was acceptable. The bike will be fitted with a flyscreen and Venture pack frame and be ready to pick up on Saturday.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Next Bike - some thoughts

Over the last week I have pondered the choice of bikes with a focus on naked 1000cc and bigger machines. Google has been a great help and I now have a list of favorites on these bikes. My search is mainly of reviews and it is interesting the variety of opinion and test results.

My requirements are fairly straightforward:
  • Not too tall 800 - 815 seat
  • Sound torque at low revs so I don't have to work the gears and clutch around town
  • Flickable and easy to maneuver
  • Something I will love
  • Not too expensive and good value for money
The last point is important. The SV1000 must be one of the best value / bang-for-buck bikes on the market. So no matter what I buy is going to cost as much again as I will get for the SV.
Top of my list is a Triumph Speed Triple; and priced a few thou less than competitors.

Today at my lunch break I went to Motorad and sat on a demo S3. Nice - very nice. First fine day I will take it for a spin. I still remember well the ride on a Corsaro; that was a great bike, so how will the S3 compare?

Sunday Morning and to Martinborough for coffee

At just before 6.30am I woke, looked outside and viewed a perfect day. At 7.20am I was on the road.

It was a nice brisk ride over the hill up to Greytown and then a back track to Martinborough. I arrived just as the coffee shop was opening. Sent a few texts just to let people know I was up and had a ride and coffee, and then I was back on the road.

I stopped at the summit and chatted to an Aprilia and GN owner before heading home. Coming down the hill south of Kaitoke and just past the parking area to view the twin lakes I drifted around the bend at a nice pace and the radar detector chirped. I touched the brakes looking for the source and at the end of the straight was a group of vehicles coming towards me; a red one in front with alternate flashing headlights.

I stopped at the bottom of the hill on the flat in the 80kph area and handed my license to the gentleman in uniform. Did I know I was doing 114kph? I said no and I didn't think I was going that fast; which was true as I wasn't riding by the speedo. Anyway, he went back to the car and joined his mate where no doubt they checked up on me and the bike. On his return I had to talk into the alcohol meter, returning a negative and I was advised to cool it a bit on this big bike. Excellent outcome and I did cool it.

This made me think more of the naked versus faired choice. I want a muscular bike but not a hyper fast one. However, 114 is not fast on anything except may be a scooter. The SV1000s is a great bike at 110 plus speeds, frustrating at 80 - 90 and hard work around the city.

Got home at 9.55am ready to go shopping. Had my ride in the best part of the day.

Saturday - watching the VRod

Mid Saturday morning Alan called. Hi - I am on a Vrod heading down the Hutt Road to Petone; what are you doing etc?

15 minutes later the quiet putter of the Vrod in the drive way and in the meanwhile I was dressed and the SV was warming up. We synchronized our blue tooth headsets and headed off up the Motorway to Mana, around Greys Road on the Northern side of the inlet, over Heywards and into Wellington Motorcycles.

Once at the shop it was another look around the bikes for me and further consideration to the Hayabusa. The consideration was more to find all the reasons why it would be a silly decision for me to buy that bike. I looked again at the Buell and thought; good price but I don't think so. Over the last week I have been thinking a lot about getting a naked bike and have spent a few hours using google to find information. A couple of days ago I sent a note the the Moto Morini importers with a query as to the location of their 9.5 and Corsaro demo bikes. Other bikes in the mix include the Aprillia Tuono and Triumph Speed Triple. Yes I am easing away from sports tourers with fairings.

We had Lunch, Alan swopped the Vrod for his Fatboy, and we headed back to Johnsonville to visit the Quasimoto clothing sale. I didn't buy anything but am interested in the new range of leather gear that is about to arrive.

Got home and cleaned the bike.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Another short ride and thinking of a different bike

My health has a way to go before I can do anything strenuous but I needed a ride.

I left home at 2.00pm and headed north to Mana where I headed around the northern side of the inlet up up the Paekakariki Hill Road. A short rest at the outlook and down the other side to Queen Elizabeth Park and back again over the Hill around the southern side of the inlet and home. That was a 97km round trip. Very nice to get out.

During the last couple of weeks I have been reconsidering what the next bike will be. Someone suggested a Hayabusa would be a good match for what I wanted. However, after googleing the topic and reading up numerous reviews, blogs and forums I ruled out this bike. It is just far to powerful and I can't see how I could enjoy having to manage a bike like that.

During this week I visited Motormart in the Hutt. My reason was to view what Ducati had to offer that was similar to the Triumph Sprint ST. The Ducati ST2 is a nice bike and in the same price bracket as the Sprint. While there I was shown a Honda Blackbird, took away some information and when home googled the blackbird. Now I am more than just a little interested in the Blackbird.

The Blackbird is a seriously powerful bike but not as brutal and more refined than a Hayabusa. Owners of the blackbird speak highly of the bike. The price is very attractive being $5 less than the Sprint or ST2.

More to think about.

Tomorrow is a Ulysses ride to Woodville. I will give this a miss as I don't have the strength for a full day ride.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Short ride

This was the first time back on the bike since my little op etc. I am still not feeling up to anything strenuous. Barry called yesterday and suggested a ride starting at 10.00am from Fraser Park. Later in the day I meet John at Motorad while there looking at bikes. He was interested in a ride and Alan was also a possibility.

I headed off to Fraser Park just on 9.30am and met up with Barry and John. They planned a ride over to Martinborough and up to the Paihiatua Track via the Gladstone Road, to Vinegar Hill and on to Wanganui for lunch. My ride was to Martinborough where we stopped for coffee and after that I headed back home. I got home at 1.15pm, tired but glad I made the effort to ease myself back onto the bike.