Friday, May 8, 2015

What happened to spring?

I've been neglecting my duties here.

Mainly my moto time has been devoted to the shop instead of the pen.  That, and commuting.

The weather this week has been nothing short of glorious.  July in early May, truly.  Temperatures in the high 20's, blue skies, little to no rain.  If anything, it's a little worrisome.  Everything green is bursting out, sprouting from every branch and patch of earth.  We're expecting rain all weekend and into next week.  The earth will drink it up greedily, and shoot out ever more foliage.

On the shop side, there is a task underway: installing a really nice pair of Viking Bags Lamellar hard saddlebags on the Honda Shadow.  There will be much more on this later.  For the time being my challenge is to find longer screws.  The ones supplied with the mounting kit are about an inch too short.  Sometime this weekend I need to ferret out longer metric screws.  Once I have them, the rest of the installation should be very straightforward (he writes, crossing his fingers).

Here's a shot of the right side saddlebag held in place with some mooring line.

The remaining task on the Honda is removing the Cobra pipes and re-installing the original Honda exhaust.  The head of the service department at my dealer says the bike will be happier with the Honda pipes, mechanically-speaking.  I'm hoping the persistent backfiring that occurs when slowing the bike on compression will go away.  Fingers crossed on that one too.

22 comments:

  1. Those bags look gorgeous on the bike.

    I somewhat feel that you have all the work, while I'll go to get the fun... I'll buy you dinner and drinks next time we meet...

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    Replies
    1. No worries Sonja, I'm enjoying the work.

      I was hoping that the saddlebags would be finished this weekend. Unfortunately, the bike has a rear rack and sissy bar and those add more width, enough width that the supplied bolts are about 10-15 mm short.

      The only place to get the necessary 80 and 90 mm M8 bolts is closed weekends. That will be my first stop tomorrow morning on the way to work.

      Delete
  2. On second thought... Less paint job visible. Really liking the bags already.

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  3. Replies
    1. Doug, the bags do look great on that bike.

      They are leather-covered fibreglass. really nice.

      Delete
  4. Bags look great and I agree on going back to stock pipes. But give it a break and get out for a long ride.

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    1. It is a little frustrating to have the bike sitting there and not rolling.

      The good news is that the mods are nearing completion. The bike may be ready to tackle a commute this coming week.

      Delete
  5. Very much liking the bags! Get out and enjoy the sun!

    PS David & Sonja, if you need a West Coast bike.......

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    Replies
    1. Right, there's an orphaned Shadow in Victoria.

      That bike would be perfect. So many opportunities, so little time, too few riders :)

      Delete
  6. Replies
    1. Thanks Brandy. Sonja, and I are really very pleased.

      Delete
  7. The bags look pretty nice on the bike. Maybe the jetting was never changed when the pipes were installed.

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    1. Richard I think there's a good chance the jetting is stock. Time will tell. If not, it will be re-jetted when the maintenance is done.

      Delete
  8. Modifications are looking good - can't wait to see the finished product.

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    Replies
    1. It seems that this year everything is in slow motion. So close, just not quite there yet.

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  9. Stock is best. I nearly put an aftermarket exhaust ion the Vespa but after a trial run I decided I was an idiot. Happens a lot.

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    1. Hmmm... Michael trust me, I'm an expert on idiots. I've observed many over the years. You sir are no idiot. An optimist, probably. Certainly no idiot.

      Delete
  10. Hi David,
    The original pipes will most certainly cure any back fire on decelerating , what's your plans with the Honda......are you going to run both bikes?
    I try my upmost to give my Vespa and Lambretta a little time each but it's sometimes tough and now and then I wish I just had the one ride, maintain and generally care for!
    I plan on taking Bob for spin on the Lammy;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Len the Shadow is co-owned by Sonja and I. Sonja has plans for a grand Maritime tour early this fall. I'm the resident mechanic and fixer.

      Currently I'm cursing my way through a saddlebag installation. Tomorrow I'm enlisting the assistance of an expert mechanic. He says 'if your struggling so hard, you're probably going about it the wrong way'.

      I'm sure he's right.

      The Vespa is still the main horse in the stable.

      ScooterBob is going to love the Lammy :)

      Delete
  11. I've always liked the looks of the Honda Shadow motorcycles and a 750 seems a perfect size to me -- not too big but still looks like a cruiser. The hard side cases will be a nice and functional addition to the machine.

    I read an earlier post about Black Beauty where you appraise the exhaust system and it was nice to see you acknowledging your neighbors. That certainly not a consideration of every rider.

    It was also interesting to note how you felt the Vespa was a more comfortable ride. Not having ridden a Shadow I didn't have any first hand experience but I've ridden a number of Triumph and Harley cruisers and they felt pretty plush.

    I only have one question though -- how are you going to integrate your new ride into the blog? Or in deciding what to ride when? Every time I think of adding a motorcycle to the fleet I can only see one or the other gathering dust. It's like cameras for me. I only use one regardless of how many I have...

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    Replies
    1. Steve the Shadow is truly plush compared to the Vespa, until you hit a patch of rough pavement, a ridge or a dip. The suspension on the Vespa and the seating position absorb shocks better.

      The blog is evolving, more horses, more courses, so to speak.

      So far the Honda hasn't gone very far. It came home, then went for a very short Sunday tootle, most recently went to the corner to gas up.

      The Vespa is getting all the miles.

      That will change as soon as the saddlebags are installed (curse, curse, curse).

      Delete

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