Thursday, December 17, 2009

Ride to Martinborough

Today is Thursday, the weather is great and a day off work.   Decision made to go for a little ride somewhere, have a coffee and come home - Martinborough was beckoning.

I fitted up the GPS to record the route and left home at exactly 11.00am (that time from the GPS log).   At exactly noon I was in Featherston and then headed to Martinborough via a few diversions. The route included: Wards Line (a little blat along parts), Bidwills Cutting Road, Greytown Bidwills Cutting Road, Kemptons Line, Crosses Line, Bidwill Cutting Road and stopped for a photo at intersection of Moiki Road, Kitchener Road and to the Coffee spot in Martinborough Square at 12.38pm.  I  left to go home at 12.59pm  and arrived home at 2.07pm.

The round trip was 185kms.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009


The weather had come right after many days of non bike riding weather.  I headed to Avalon via Heywards arriving about 5.45pm. There was a good turnout of 25 - 30 bikes and only 3 250s in the group.  The ride went to the lookout on Paikokariki Hill road and then back to a bar at Mana.  At this point I headed home, getting in just after 8.00pm.

Ulysses Christmas BBQ

The BBQ was on Sunday at Kaitoki park.  The weather was poor but I went anyway and there was some rain in Upper Hutt.   I stayed there for 10 or so minutes and then went for a ride up the Takas.  It started raining so I canceled that idea and headed home.  

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Tuesday 8 December 20 years Ulysses

I rode to the meeting last night.  It was a celebration of 20 years since the start of the Wellington Branch.

Meeting and ride were okay.

Monday, December 07, 2009

First decent day this summer

This was a non working day so I went and got a tag up Plimmerton way.  Had a coffee on the way home at Pahatanui and made a new tag for the Wellington team to find.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

HOG Toy Run

Another year and I have a patch to prove attendance.   I left home just after 10.00am for Mana.  The run started at 11.00am and there were around 800 bikes of all makes.

Had a sausage and coffee after the run and got home shortly after 1.00pm.  I have a GPS log of the run.

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Haywards loop

It was a nice day so I finished it with a run around the loop.  On the way I stopped at Alan's and he had just finished cleaning the HD so joined me for the remainder of the loop. 

We are now ready for the excitement of the HOG Toy Run.  

Monday, November 23, 2009

Pahiatua Track Sunday

The weather on Sunday morning was iffy with showers predicted to clear later in the day.  At midday I planned a ride to take in  Martinborough, some back roads with a run home down the other coast.

The first stop was Martinborough for a coffee where I met up with a few other bikers.  Then I headed to Gladstone via Ponatahi Road and around the Westmere Road to the Servo on the outskirts of Masterton.  A stretch of the legs there and then off to Eketahuna via Mauriceville.  The bike was refuelled there with 200kms and 11 Litres since the last fill. 

From Eketahuna I took the Mangamaire turnoff and then over the track.  The run home was down SH57 to Levin and then SH1 home.  

I left home at 12.37 and got back at 5.43pm having travelled 385kms.  This ride was a good test for the new leathers made for me by Sam at Celtic Leathers.  The leathers fit well and were warm and comfortable.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


The Wednesday night ride is not quite as cruisy as it has been. Just a few of us and mainly Triumphs headed to Paikok hill and then back to Mana for refreshments.  Good ride and good company.  I got home at 8.45pm.

TAG chase Monday

No riding over the weekend but managed to fit in a quiet run on Monday to check out some Tags and visit MC shops.

I viewed the BMW products in Motomart.  Nice bikes and am somewhat taken by the Adventure 650GS - 800cc motor.  A brief stop then at WMC and home.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Woodville loop for leathers

My leathers were ready to be picked up and the weather report was okay for a ride to Woodville.   I left home at 9.20am and stopped for fuel at Rimutex.   Arrived at Celtic Leathers at 12.03pm.  I did  a short ride down the road to try the leathers for fit and then returned to finalise the transaction.

I left at 1.20pm and headed to Woodville.  It was a slow trip through the Manuwatu Gorge following a truck with yellow no passing lanes to frustrate further.  Next stop was at Shannon for food and coffee.  A nature stop was made at Paikokariki and then was trapped there as the rail crossing barriers came down and stayed there for about 20 mins.  The bike was fuelled at Mana with 15.22L at 298kms.

I arrived home at 4.16pm having traveled 349kms. 

Odo: 8310.  Economy for trip 5.07L/100kms

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Sunday ride

This afternoon included a BBQ at Kari's followed by a short ride with Alan to Paikakariki.   The Hayabusa has now travelled 7935kms.

Thursday, November 05, 2009


This was not really a ride.  Taking the bike into the city to view the Guy Fawkes firework display meant a park and no problem getting home through the traffic.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Ulysses short ride

The ride today was to Martinborough.  A short ride but with a diversion on the way out East of Carterton. 

Lunch was at Martinborough and on my ride home I met up with Alan at the summit and we did a circuit to the Harley Cafe for coffee.  A nice days ride and the gps log is saved as a record.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

ACC Protest Ride

It was a last minute decision to ride into Wellington to see how many motorcyclists turned up at Parliament. First I went to Wellington Motorcycles and then headed to Parliament around 11.35am.

I parked in Molesworth Street outside the Parliament grounds and at that very spot were some Kiwibikers and local Ulysses members. There were about 500 motorcycles and mine was captured by TV1 for a news clip. I was in the right or wrong place.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009


The weather was kind after a lot of rain. I was the first at the Duck Pond but only had to wait a few minutes for the someone to turn up.

It was a good ride across to the Tin Hutt. I stayed a while and headed home at 7.42pm and arriving home at 8.41pm. The precise timing is now possible when using the GPS and downloading the track log.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Nice day to play tag and ride

There was a tag waiting to be collected in Thorndon Quay. At 11.30am I headed into the city to collect it and then posted a new one up the top of Newlands.

At 2.15pm I went for a ride up the Paikok hill road and back via Plimmerton, Greys Road and SH1. Arrived home at 3.45pm. The new rear tyre is now scrubbed in.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Rear Tyre

Replaced the rear tyre today with a Bridgestone Battlax BT016. Odo 7250.

The rear may have had another 1000kms left on it but with the possibility of a longer ride this weekend I didn't want to take the risk of it wearing out or getting a flat.

Monday, October 12, 2009

HD XR1200

I went into the city this morning to pick up a tag, deliver a package to the accountant and ride the HD XR1200.

The tag was easy and I submitted the claim via my mobile phone. I took the HD onto the motorway and into Johnsonville where I used the MC in a tag. The XR1200 is a nice bike and I liked the upright riding position and wide bars. 45 minutes later I handed the bike back - as a second or third bike I could use one of these.

On the way home on the Busa I called into Richardson Motorcycles and booked time for a rear tyre change on Thursday.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Akatarawa Loop

I left home on the dot of 1.00pm with no plan of where to go. When getting near to Paraparumu I decided to ride the Akatarawa road and have a look at the Rimutaka summit. That is what happened and I got home at 4.00pm having covered 152kms, according to the GPS.

Now I have ridden the Akatarawa Road I will not go there again without good reason.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Harley Rides

Wellington Motorcycles offered rides on the 2010 model HDs today. I got in there at 9.30am and rode three bikes before heading home at 1.00pm. The weather was bad, rain, some hail and a very strong cold southerly.
The group rides were along the motorway to the Churton Park off/on ramp and then back down the Hutt Road.
I rode:
Sporty 883 - I would never consider owning this bike.
Vrod Muscle - different, the front pegs were too far forward for me.
Dyna Fat Bob - I think this is what a Harley is with all the vibes and shaking. Pegs are also too far forward.

Next week I will see if I can ride the XR1200 and a Buell. The weather is going to improve.

Friday, October 09, 2009

Tag O Rama

Terrible weather today but there was a tag out there. It took a while to find the location in Google Maps but once found I knew I needed to go and get it before someone beat me to it during their lunch time break. It was only a few kms away.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Cruisy Wednesday

My first mid week ride this season. I arrived at the meeting point early at 5.50pm. At 6.30pm the group headed to Featherston. I stopped at the summit and then returned taking in the Haywards Hill and SH1 on the way home.
A nice quiet ride - very cold.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Tag O Rama

I did my first Tag ride today. The first was in the morning and I missed the tag so went and had a look around Wellington Motorcycles. In the afternoon I went back into the city to claim my first tag.

Then after getting home and posting the claim I went up the street and created a new tag. It has since been claimed.

This is a new excuse for going for a ride.

Sunday, September 27, 2009


This was my first ride since the operation. I swung by Alan's on the way and our next stop was the summit of the Rimutaka Hill. From there it was straight to Martinborough for lunch and coffee.

On the way home we took a diversion to Carterton and then looped back to the Martinborough road via Greytown.

The new GPSmap 60CSx was on the bike and this was a test of the device. It worked well and the directions shown on the screen were easy to read and logical. I have downloaded the log to Mapsource and can view the route in Google Earth. The ETA calculator is very effective and at Rimutaka calculated an ETA at home of 3.13pm then recalculated to 3.15pm near Lower Hutt and arrived home a couple of minutes after that.

Trip 210kms and total for bike 6775kms.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Sunday ride to Palmerston Nth

Ulysses had a ride to PN for lunch at ANZA and then a free ride back. It was raining and the forecast was for more rain when I left at 9.30am. Only a few turned up for the ride. The rain had stopped when I got to the start at Plimmerton and we had a good run to PN with a stop at Shannon.

BBQ sausages were the lunch. Alan had been on a HOG ride to Rongotea and myself and Jude headed in a round about circuit (didn't know where Rongotea was) to Rongotea. By now it was raining steadily but the Revit overgear was keeping the rain out. On the way back to Wellington we stopped at Otaki for a coffee. I got home a couple of hours later than planned and even though it was mostly a wet ride it was a good one.

This is my last ride for at least a month, maybe two, as tomorrow I go into hospital for a big op.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Ulysses Remembrance Ride

I got the notification of this event while overseas and was waiting for further information on who was going from Wellington. A couple of days ago I made inquiries and learn t that few were going and one (Ken) was on the way - the long way round. So a plan was formed to make a visit to Hawkes Bay (business and personal) and fit in the ride to Taupo for the Remembrance Ride and Service.

This was also an opportunity to christen the motorcycle trailer. On Friday the bike was loaded onto the trailer and at 5.15pm we headed off to Hastings via the Wairarapa. The trailer towed well and other than a few rattles on rough roads we could have forgotten the trailer was there.

Saturday morning was an early start with unloading the bike and gearing up for the ride to Taupo where the Taupo Ulysses group leave for Rotorua at 10.00am. The temperature was 1 degree C when I left Havelock North at 7.45am. It wasn't until Pakowhai that the visor and glasses stopped fogging up and until I was out of fog.

It was a clear sky, very cold but a nice day was emerging. Low cloud, fog, and cold was a problem. The heated grips were performing well and very needed. As I went down the hill to the Mohaka River the water on the visor from the fog/low cloud turned to ice. I had been wiping water off the visor, now it was ice crystals. I stopped at the summit north of Te Haroto (see google map), for a 5 minute rest. Once over the hills the sky cleared and it was a good run into Taupo.

View Larger Map

Fuelled up and headed to the Spa Road meeting point. The local group of 50 odd left at 10.00am and headed along what was the reverse route of the remembrance ride from Rotorua. The route was Broadlands Road to Settler Road and then SH5. The meeting place in Rotorua was on the lake front at the end of Fenton Street. As we arrived around 11.30am there was plenty of time for food and relaxation.

At 12.45pm the assembled lot headed to the formal ride start point in the area by Whakarewarewa on the outskirts of Rotorua. We left there at 1.00pm and headed to Taupo along SH5 and Broadlands Road to the AC baths parking area. The formal ride from the AC baths left at 2.30pm to go to the Taupo Event Center for the service. The photos are of the briefing for this formal ride. I counted 231 bikes at the Event Center.

I left Taupo at 3.23pm and got onto SH5 to Napier at 3.27pm. A few kilometers up the road I needed to stop and put on the neckwarmer and balaclava that I was sure wasn't needed. I got into Havelock North at 4.05pm and 165Kms later.

The ride was excellent (other than the cold temps on the way over). It is a pity the speed limit is so low as the roads and bike are capable of so much more. There was very little traffic on SH5 and a HP at both ends.

The Scottoiler delivered half the bottle of oil and a fair bit ended up on the bike, I have wound back the oil delivery rate. The next morning (Sunday) the bike had a flat battery as the heated grips had been left on. The controller for the grips is meant to switch off when the battery volts drop so the battery doesn't get flattened. I am considering having a relay fitted to isolate the heated grips and feed to the radar detector when the ignition is turned off. More to follow on this.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Back in NZ

On Sunday early morning we arrived home from 5 weeks in the UK and Europe. No motorcycle riding during that time but I saw plenty of bikes in the UK.

Monday I fired up the busa and took it down the road for petrol and a little warm up run to Grays Road and return. On Tuesday the bike was in Wellington Motorcycles for the 6000kms service (has done 5500kms) and the fitting of Oxford hot grips and Scottoiler. I picked the bike up today (Wednesday) and did a run out to the Hutt.

The setting of the oiler will need to be monitored for 100kms or so; at the moment it seems to be releasing a lot of oil. The total cost of service, grips and oiler was $1008.

Monday, June 22, 2009

sunday last ride

On sunday I did the Haywards loop and took in Grays road. This will be my last ride for a wee while. The bike is parked up under cover.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Lunch in Martinborough

The rain was clearing and it would be fine in the Wairarapa. I left home at 11.30am with the camera set up on the bike for some video recording of the ride. Arrived at Alan's at noon and Alan was setting up his video camera. This was to be a test of the cameras.

We fueled at Caltex in Rimutaka. The first video clip was from the base of the hill to the top. The road was wet and the top third of the hill was in cloud and misty rain. We stopped at the top to stop the cameras and then headed to Martinborough. Just outside Martinborough I started the camera and ran it until we got to the cafe.

After lunch we headed out the back road to Carterton. I took a few video clips on the way. The camera works okay except for vibration under acceleration which distorts the picture. Here is a video heading back up the hill. Fixing the vibration problem will be a project.

I got home at 4.00pm. The bike odo reads 5417kms.
Some of the clips are up on youtube.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Sunday 8 degree ride

It was cold and once the showers had cleared mid afternoon a ride was on.

The ride was home to Alan's and then over the Wainuiomata hill and out to the coast. I left home at 3.15pm and was back at 5.30pm. Took some videos on the Coast Road.

At last a fine day

I had set up the camera on a techmount in the stem. A short ride around the streets from home indicated it worked okay - better than expected for a point and shoot on video mode.
Video Jville onramp

Early afternoon Alan called by and we did the Heywards hill loop. The camera was run from the start of the motorway at jville until the coffee stop at Pauatahanui. Video around Paramata Road

Good home at 3.30pm. Plan to do the Rimutaka Hill on Sunday after the weather front has passed through.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

First ride for ages

I went to Waikane this morning to sort out some final details on the wheel chock for the trailer.

It was drizzling in Wellington but once on the coast the weather cleared and the sun was out in Waikanae. It took and hour to have the work down and then I stopped at a roadside coffee station at 11.00am before heading home. It was overcast very cool in Wellington.

I need to post pics of the trailer. Link to what will be my advertising webpage for the trailer is here.

Sunday, May 03, 2009


1145 to 1545 a ride to Martinborough for coffee and return via Ponatahi road, Carterton and SH2. It is getting cooler - needed the thermals and thinking about heated grips.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Road trip to New Plymouth 18 April 2009

Alan and I have been talking about a ride to New Plymouth for a few months. The weather was looking good so on Thursday I made a booking for a motel in New Plymouth on the Saturday - commitment made we were going to NP.
Saturday morning I arrived at the Plimmerton Weigh Station meeting point on 8.00am. Alan arrived 10 minutes later, we hooked up the bluetooth headsets and headed up SH1. The first stop was in Sanson for a much needed coffee and some food. A fuel stopped followed in Waverley at 11.10 where 11.45L at 230kms was put in the tank. We planned a run around the coastal road with a stop at Opunake for lunch.

Opunake had nothing to offer in the way of decent food; we had a look at the beach and carried on. The next stop was Oaonui next to the helicopter pad; took some pics and I reminisced on the 50+ trips I had done from there to Maui A. Next was a trip down Cape Road to view the lighthouse and sea and take a few pics. By now I was very hungry and was certain we would be able to find somewhere to eat in Oakura.

It was 2.40pm before we ordered food at the Oakura Village Cafe. Some local HD riders were at the pub next to the cafe. There were some rough bikes and equally rough riders - nice sound to one of the bikes. While having lunch I contacted John (Pussy on KB) and we planned to catch up later and have a ride somewhere. The next stop was to book into the Flamingo Motel, call John and arrange to meet him at the airport to have a look at his plane.

Following some minor maintenance to the aircraft John led the way to Waitara for fuel and a ride. The bike took 9.6L at 4291kms being 270kms. John led the way north for a few kms and then right up Otaraoa Road (thru a tunnel) with a stop somewhere in Tarata Conservation area. A few photos and chat about bikes the road and we headed to Inglewood. John left us at the Egmont Road intersection for his home and Alan and I headed to the motel.

It was dark by the time we got to New Plymouth. Half and hour was spent resting in an indoor heated swimming pool and then we went out for a much needed steak. John and Annie (Gasset Girl KB) joined us at dinner. We can recommend the Steak Out restaurant.

Sunday morning was a sleep in to 8.00am. We then headed to have breakfast at the Bach cafe on the breakwater arriving at 9.00am to find they don't open until 9.30am. To fill in 30mins we took a ride around the Paritutu park and then up to Vogeltown to view the house I lived in 22 years ago. When we arrived there the owner was trimming the edges of the lawn and offered to show us around the section. It was just after 9.30am when we got back to the cafe. A cooked breakfast later and we were on the road and heading to Stratford.

At a stop between Inglewood and Stratford photos of a HP car and the mountain were taken. The weather was kind so we rode up to the ski field car park. From there it was to the museum at Tawhiti. This is a private museum and well worth the $10 entrance fee. Coffee and food in the on site cafe followed. We carried on the Ohangai road and Meremere road to SH3.

A fuel stop was required at Patea at 2.24pm. The bike having done 170kms took 14Litres to fill. Other than following a very quick RX Mazda (RX2ENV) for a while it was an uneventful trip home.

I got home at 5.45pm. A final odo reading of 4721kms and total trip of 930kms. This was an enjoyable trip and a comfortable distance to travel over two days.

Ulysses meeting Tuesday 14th

Another month has gone by and another meeting to attend. I took the bike to distribute the chain oil and release the surplus; all part of the planning for next weekend.


I was in Havelock North for most of the Easter weekend and the bike was left at home. We came back on Sunday and that left Monday for a bit of a ride. As both SH1 and SH2 would have heavy traffic from people returning home from the long weekend a different ride and route were planned.

It was nothing exciting. Alan and I left my home and we took the Johnsonville route to Makara Beach. From Makara beach we headed to Kaori and then via the University area to Aro Valley where we stopped for a coffee. Then it was to the south coast and around the harbour, through the tunnel, onto the motorway and home.

At home I checked out the bike and gave the chain a good lube; all in preparation for a possible ride to New Plymouth the following weekend.

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Sunday morning ride

Alan and I decided a ride to Martinborough or thereabouts for a coffee would be a good idea and so would leaving early. Early for us means 8.30am from Alan's rather than the Ulysses 10.00am or Kiwibiker 10.30am starts.

Our route was a loop out towards Martinborough and a loop via Greytown, Carterton and Gladstone. Once in Martinborough we both bought a Venison pie and coffee. The trip home included a diversion to Greytown to buy some chocolate.

I was home by 1.00pm with time to go shopping and mow the lawns. Early morning rides work for me.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Busa is fixed

I collected the bike from WMC this afternoon. It has a new regulator/rectifier unit.

My concern is, will this fail again? There are some comments on Hayabusa forums about the location of the rectifier and they have been reported to fail after being damaged by stones from the rear wheel. There was no noticeable damage on my bike's rectifier but it is hard to know what internal damage could occur from a high speed stone. There are stones stuck by tar to the top of the rectifier mounting bracket and in the fairing below the rectifier. These would have got there on the Wednesday night ride from the resealing at Te Marua. Time will tell but I am considering a modification to protect the unit.

Odo 3369kms at WMC

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Gone to the workshop

WMC picked up the Busa this morning. Yesterday I got the bike running, just enough juice in battery to start, and checked the battery volts. There was no charge voltage reading.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Hayabusa stopped

Today was to be a ride to Ngawi with Ulysses and first an early coffee over the hill. Never got that far as the busa stopped running.
I went for a ride over the Rimutakas with Alan early morning and near the top the F1 light came on. I stopped and there was not enough charge in the battery to crank it. So I turned the bike around went down hill and crash started the bike. It ran for a couple of Kilometers and then the engine stopped and so did the instruments. It was then a coast down to the bottom.
The bike got a ride home on the back of a truck courtesy of AA Rescue and hopefully will be in the workshop tomorrow. The battery is flat (10 volts) so I guess it is either a faulty battery or the charging system failed. It is a pity Suzuki didn't fit a low volt / battery charge warning light. I had just started the bike at the Caltex station around 8kilometers or 8 minutes before it failed.

Tomorrow I will make a call to Wellington Motorcycles.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

31 Motorcycles on Wednesday ride

One week to go until daylight saving ends and so do the Wednesday night rides. Next week will be the last but as today was excellent weather I did this ride just in case next week is rained out.

This time I got to the start early - just on 6.00pm. We went to the White Swan in Greytown. I didn't stay long, the nights are closing in now. The ride home was by myself and there was little traffic on the hill - a nice ride.

Got home just after 9.00pm.

Sunday, March 15, 2009


Ulysses had a ride to Castlepoint today and I considered it. However, I couldn't spend all day on the bike so opted for a shorter option. I left home a 8.55am and headed for Featherston. Just inside the boundary there was a police road stop. They were stopping bikes so ACC staff could hand out a safety pack for motorcyclists.

That stop was uneventful and they didn't see my cunning new radar detector setup in the tankbag. From Featherston I did a loop down the Martinborough Road and then up to Carterton with a return back to Featherston to meet up with the Ulysses group. During this ride I tested the acceleration in 2nd and 3rd. It took a few runs until I was able to cope with the mental and physical overload of the blistering acceleration. This bike is unbelievably fast.

From Featherston we headed to Martinborough and around the back road to Masterton/Castlepoint. I stopped at the Hill Climb out the back of Gladstone and watched the action there for a while.

At 12.45pm I headed home arriving at 2.15pm. The fuel light came on as I went up the Ngaranga Gorge so I stopped and filled it up. This is an economical bike, even with a number of squirts to 10,000rpm in 2nd and 3rd. 278kms Jville to Jville and 15.72 litres to fill it - 5.65L/100kms or 50MPG. The Hayabusa odo now reads 3159.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

End of summer Wednesday ride

Summer is officially over but what a beautiful day. I got out to the duck pond around 6.20pm and there was a large crowd. I meet some new people before the ride started. As the road over the Rimutakas had some work done on it the decision was made to go over the Paikakariki Hill road and meet at Gordies bar in Paraparaumu.

As I tend to do I went near the back of the pack. The first stop was at the lookout and here I counted 43 motorcycles. A couple had pillions so there were over 45 on the ride.

Once the sun had set I headed home, getting in at 8.45pm. This was a 103km ride and the bike has now done over 2800kms. I filled it with 15.5litres before leaving which calculates at 5.3L/100ks for last Sunday's ride to Ashhurst.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Palmerston North to visit Temanawa

This was the Ulysses ride. We left Plimmerton Weigh Station at 10.00m. There were only 6 riders and I can only assume the threat of rain was the reason so many wimped out on the ride.

The show at Temanawa was "Motorcycles Unleashed"

After the visit we went to the Herb Garden Cafe in Ashhurst for lunch. I came straight home via SH1 getting home at 4.30pm. Some took the longer ride home via the track.

Fuel useage: I noted the low fuel light came on at 290kms - have yet to fill up.

Comments are now turned on in this blog.

Friday night - trademe deliveries

Alan had a couple of deliveries to make from sales on Trademe so I joined him. Any excuse to take the bike instead of a cage will do. The deliveries were in Mana and Whitby so the route took in Grays Road and Paramata Road.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Wednesday ride

Another Wednesday. It was fine weather with no wind so promising for a ride. I arrived at the Duck pond just before 6.30pm and Alan just after that. We were the last to leave and after a brief stop at the summit went on to Greytown. A good number turned up for the ride.

The temperature plummeted after the sun went down and it was a very cold ride home. I should have had the thermal in the jacket. Summer is almost over.

I got home at 9.20pm.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Weekend rides

There were no organised rides this weekend; or none I was interested in. Saturday I rode down to the Stadium in the late morning to watch 1000 Harley Davidson motorcycles go past in the thunder ride. That was impressive and then in the afternoon I rode back to the city to view the HD events held around Frank Kitts Park. The stunt riding was worth going to see. It would have been impossible to find a park so taking the bike was the right thing to do.

Today the wind is very strong. A ride was needed so I did a quiet poddle around the local suburbs, tweek down the motorway and finished off with some practice braking to keep the skill and confidence up.

The odometer now reads 2231.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Another Wednesday

This was just another Wednesday night ride. Over the hill to Featherston, had a ginger beer and headed home. All over by 8.30am.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Lunch in Ashhurst

The ride today was organised by Ulysses. It was their long ride for the month and the plan was to ride up SH1 to Mangaweka or thereabouts and then go to Ashhurst for lunch.

I arrived at the Plimmerton weigh station at 9.30am for a 10.00am start. The local Ferrari club had assembled there before going on their outing to Otaki. I discussed cars and bikes with some of the owners and a couple of other bike riders arrived before the cars left. Steve was next to arrive and he was the ride organiser. About 12 turned up - I should have counted. All but 3 bikes were Suzuki.

Just after 10 we left. The route was: SH1 - Shannon - Opiki, Kopono, Awahuri to Fielding. Fuel was added in Fielding and a 20 minute rest. We then explored the Halcombe back roads and ended up at the bottom of Vinegar Hill SH54. A regroup at SH1 and on to Ohingaiti. From there to Pemberton and down Kimbolton road, Colyton road to Ashhurst. Lunch was at the Herb Garden Cafe in Ashhurst.

I left Ashhurst at 3.00pm and headed back home via Shannon. Most of the others went home via the Paihiatua track.

This was one of the better rides I have been on. The pace was good and I tucked in behind Steve as leader. The group ran at a consistent pace and didn't spread out much more than a minute - even on the fast winding bits.

Home to home was 468kms. The bike is running well and is economical returning 5.8L/100kms.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Wednesday night ride

A usual assembly and good turn out at the duck pond. Eight of us headed to the top of the Rimutakas while the rest went over Haywards and to Paraparaumu via the Paikakareki hill road. When we got to the top of the hill we turned around and headed over to Paraparaumu to join the group.

I got home at 9.05pm. The bike has now covered 1550kms.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

C Mode (chicken mode)

Tonight was the Ulysses monthly meeting. Actually the first for the year. I planned to take the bike as the rain had stopped and by the time the commitment was made and I was ready to go it had just started to rain.

Once I had the bike running I switched to "C" to run the bike at lower power while on a wet road. This mode considerably dampens the performance and I noticed the lack of rapid acceleration when entering the on ramp section to SH2 at the bottom of the gorge. It is a good mode to use in slippery conditions - tames the beast. "C mode" is referred to as chicken mode - suits me though.

The drizzle had turned into fine rain and lots of it by the time I rode home.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Photo shoot

Alan and I did a ride out to the South Coast to take a few photos of the bikes. Technically the photos are poor as too much light from the background resulting in underexposure on the bikes.

Otherwise a nice little ride and a good coffee.

Friday, February 06, 2009

Waitangi Day Ride

There was no Wednesday evening ride for me as it was raining. I had picked up the Ventura pack frame that day and spent the evening removing stickers, fitting a tank pad and the pack frame.

Ulysses had organised a cafe ride to Greytown. In preparation for this I took the bike for a run down SH1 to Porirua and return on Thursday evening. This was just to be sure the bike was okay at highway speeds following the service and to test the pack frame.

The ride left from Brown Owl at 10.00am. It was an uneventful trip to Greytown and there was more traffic than usual. After a coffee and chat Barry and I decided to take a long way home and two others joined in. Barry led and we headed to Carterton to get onto the road to Gladstone. The Hayabusa stretched its legs a couple of times and I was a little surprised by how quickly Barry's FJR moved. From Gladstone we followed the road into the back of Martinborough and I topped up the tank there. The tank only took 12 litres so it didn't need filling but I was a little uncertain on how accurate the fuel gauge is. We followed the road to Lake Ferry and then diverted around the East side of Lake Wairarapa. Once at Featherston it was straight home and getting home around 2.00pm.

The bike is running very well and has now done 1319kms. It is almost run in. The Hayabusa has an incredible amount of power and what I find interesting is running it up to 4,000rpm it seems natural to just click it up the gears as if the engine was peaking. Unless that is, 2nd gear is held with full throttle and the revs pass 6,000rpm when it feels I am in a catapult as the bars try to pull out of hands, bum slides down the seat and the nose lifts. This bike is seriously fast.

Cleaned and chain oiled.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Hayabusa first service

Today the new bike had its 1000kms service.

There were no problems; I took the bike in at 8.00am and at 12.30pm they called to say it was ready. Picked it up at 2.30pm and all was good.

It feels good to be back with Wellington Motorcycles. They have a positive approach to customer service, are friendly and professional.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Ready for 1000kms service

Today's ride was to add some 200 kilometers to the distance the bike has travelled so it is ready for the first service on Tuesday.

The temperatures were predicted to be 26 in Wellington and 32 in the Wairarapa so I knew it would be a hot ride. I left home at midday and headed to Alan's. We went to Masterton via Martinborough and the around the water towers route back to Martinborough. The photo shows a rest spot at the top of the ride in the only shade available. Refreshments were taken at Martinborough, it was very hot and a lot of heat comes off the bike around the legs and seat area so much water was drunk. We stopped at the summit and I got home at 5.30pm.

The bike odo is now reading 993kms. A fuel up before and after the trip showed 4.91kms/litre consumption. That is better than I thought I would get from the bike. Alan's harley recorded the same fuel use.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Evening run

Took the bird for a run over Paikak and back. It is surprisingly nimble and so predictable in corners. This was a slow ride through the corners and on the straights. The ride was almost legal except for some slight movement of the wrist on a few little straights. This bird moves so quickly - it is surprising how quickly speed builds up.

First impressions:
  • Very smooth power
  • Handling excellent and smooths out bumps - so comfortable
  • Only need gears 1 - 3 but will pull 6th at any speed.
  • Wind protection is exceptional - the wind on body doesn't increase noticeably with increased speed
  • Brakes don't bite quickly and gives impression brakes are not that good - wrong impression
  • Steering is great - on my first ride I thought it was heavy, now I have adjusted.
  • Nice view from pilot seat
  • Smooth gear box, clutch great - don't need it
  • Slipper clutch system works well supporting smooth downshifts.
  • Exhausts get very hot and there is a lot of them
  • Very pleased with purchase.

Hayabusa is mine

This afternoon I took delivery of the new bike. It is nice and looks good in the garage.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Hayabusa at the end of the week

Wednesday night I went on the KB ride. It was a ride of around 40 bikes many who I hadn't seen before. We stopped at the Royal Hotel in Featherston. It was a late ride home, getting in around 9.30pm.

Friday late morning I took the Speedtriple into Motorad for a firm price on it as a trade on a 2009 Sprint ST. The price was okay and a Sprint in Gray with ABS was available. However, I was also considering a Hayabusa and had a test ride arranged at Wellington Motorcycles. I had previously ridden an 06 Sprint so was familiar with what it had to offer.

The Hayabusa is an imposing beast and I was concerned that its power would be difficult to manage. The bike was easy to ride with smooth power delivery from take off up to town and then motorway speeds. In almost any gear it was smooth and pulled smoothly - I didn't push it past 4000rpm though. The ride was to Tawa and back, just the 30 minutes allowed. I left the bike there and got call later from Hamish about the tradein price. At that point I decided the best bike and best financial decision was to go with the Busa.

Saturday and back to Wellington Motorcycles for another (longer) test ride. This ride was up SH2, over Haywards, around Grays Road and return and the inlet to SH1 and home. At home a couple of pictures were taken and then it was back to the shop.

Next week the Speedtriple has to go in for WMC to check it out and if that is okay the deal will be confirmed.

My initial thoughts on the Hayabusa:
  • Smooth flow of power regardless of gear or revs
  • Smooth over rough areas of road - I found myself lifting off the seat in preparation for the jar when crossing railway lines and road repairs when there was no need.
  • Wind protection is good - no buffeting on the helmet but some wind pressure
  • Great instrument panel and good to look at.
  • Very different riding position - bit of weight on the hands and tension in lower back.
  • It quickly increases in speed but is also easy to ride slowly.
  • Slower to turn than the S3 - is actually heavy to steer and needs firm input to the bar.
  • Acceleration in 2nd from 40kph is amazing and that is without trying - this bike has serious power ready to be tapped.
  • Heat on the legs that is irritating - it was a hot day and some slow riding.
  • I like the power map selection and found the lowest power setting "C" made for a relaxing ride in slow traffic.

At first I was a bit concerned about the riding position, steering and power, - by the end of the ride those concerns had lessened.

Next week I could have this bike.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Monday and around the block

Another ride was required to slowly wind down from the weekend ride and emotionally prepare for work on Tuesday.

Left around 4.00pm and returned at 5.00pm. The loop involved a return run on Grays Road with time to watch those participating on water sports and back to SH1 via the southern side of the inlet. NB: I can't see the point in riding through Mana.

Today I made inquiries about a Triumph Sprint.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Taupo with a Street Glide

Alan had a ride to Taupo and about planned for the weekend with some friends. The weather forecast included some rain and the others pulled out of the ride. We decided the forecast was okay for Saturday and we should do a ride anyway. This would be the first long ride for the newly acquired HD Street Glide.

I left home at 8.30am on Saturday and just after 9.00am we left from Alan's. The two of use headed to Taupo via the Wairarapa, SH50 and the Napier Taupo road. We arrived in Taupo at 4.00pm, booked into a Motel and without unpacking headed for a ride around the Lake. This ride was to Mangakino and then to Turangi via SH32 and SH41. From Turangi we went up SH1 to Taupo, arriving there at 8.30pm. The weather was fine and too hot to be sitting still in leathers, but okay when moving.

Sunday there was steady rain. The wet weather gear was put on and we were hot. However once riding it was cool enough until Turangi when the temperature dropped. From Turangi we took the National Park road SH47. Over this section of road there was steady rain and nearing National Park we were in cloud with limited visibility. From National Park we went to Ohakune - a place Alan had not been to nor me for many years. After a short rest we headed to Wanganui via SH4 and the rain eased as we neared the half way point. Our next stop was at Bulls for food and fuel. I took off the wet gear - that was a minor mistake.

Our ride home was SH1 (in some showers) and I got home at 4.00pm. It was a great ride over some excellent MC roads.

The trip was 1104 kms long. Trip computer shows 4.8l/100kms and an average speed of 78kms/hr. The bike has now done 14982kms.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

First Ride for 2009

I got back from a holiday on Tuesday which involved touring the upper North Island and the East Coast. We covered 3900kms in the car over some fantastic motorcycle roads. Sometime I will do a rerun on two wheels.

This afternoon I took the S3 for a run up to the summit and stopped at the Duckpond to meet the Thursday night riders on the way home. It was a nice ride.