Friday, July 7, 2017

Stutter, stall and a Texas strut



Yes it's another episode of Life on two wheels, but regrettably, I'm not broadcasting from the Sticks.

Check out this episode to see how, when handed a bushel of lemons, I stumbled on the finest barbecue joint north of Austin Texas.

A special shout out to Vespa Toronto West for answering my distress call from the side of the road in St-Catharines, it was very much appreciated. I spoke to the owner Lou Di Biase who immediately nailed the diagnosis: the spark plug cap had popped off. With Lou's help I located the spark plug, and with my brother-in-law's help I got it snapped back on. The Vespa was back in fine shape, but the delay caused by the mishap scuttled my trip to visit Steve Williams, and my chance for a starring performance at the Boalsburg Moto Hang and on Scooter in the Sticks.

Faced with such adversity I made up with it in spades with lunch at Adamson Barbecue on Wicksteed in Toronto.

The epic adventure in Pennsylvania will be rescheduled.

I'll come back shortly to top up the show notes with the missing links.

The music for this episode of Life on two wheels is Pushing the Stone by Silent Partner, made available courtesy of the YouTube Audio Library.

18 comments:

  1. Adamson! Twas yum. Fluid change as per usual was yuck!

    So far my excursion to the Great Canadian Rust Junkie Fest is proceeding according to plan. Reporting from Bancroft. Should have invited you along. There's some OK roads up here.

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    1. Sounds like fun, but Susan and I have plans for the weekend.

      Have fun Ed!

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  2. Sorry we couldn't cross paths again last week David. I was looking forward to your visit. There will be other opportunities in the coming weeks. You did make lemonade out of the experience. Another fine video reflection of the experience.

    I've had the same unfortunate issue with the spark plug connector. First time it happened cost me a $150 transport to the dealer to learn that lesson. I've had a failing fuel pump as well which would also cause intermittent stutters and stalls until it failed. The spark plug lead is a much better choice!

    When I saw that K-bike being described as an airhead I could hear the roar of indignation from those BMW groups collectively -- each assuming their ride as the superior BMW experience. I really like the the K bikes and have had my eye on a 1995 K75C that's sitting in the showroom of Kissell Motorsports. Not really what I need but love the way they look...

    Hope all is well. Drop me a line when something opens in your schedule.

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    1. Thanks Steve.

      I could have easily edited out my shameful ignorance of BMW's mechanical lineage and internal combustion variants (...they are all internal combustion... right?) but then I would be messing with the ugly truth, merely to avoid a needed schooling from those more knowledgeable than me (who are legion).

      My mild embarrassng ignorance may help to cement Ed's patient explanation of what a BMW K series motorcycle is.

      Let me give some thought to rescheduling.

      Let me know where that July Moto Hang venue will be.

      Delete
  3. Too bad about not being able to meet with Steve, that would have made an epic vlog episode!

    Good on you for pulling off safely in such heavy traffic, that's always tricky and unfortunately I've had more than my share of such events.

    And yea, R and K bike riders groaned.....but I did like your BIL's use of a ramp to position his motorcycle up a little higher.


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    1. Thanks Dom. It's merely a short lived postponement I assure you. And when it happens it will fuel the vlog for quite a decent number of episodes I think.

      Ed is, honestly, both ingenious and extremely knowledgeable. He has actually changed the oil on that Beemer on his work bench, in his workshop, thanks to a very high ceiling and a travelling overhead crane he built. There is very little he could not do in that small space.

      In this case he was using the wharehouse common area to do the oil change.

      I have so much to learn.

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  4. Oh, bummer! But you made the best out of it, and got away safely, David. It seems to be an issue with the older models. Roland's Bella had episodes of a stuttering engine up until failure, and it was the fuel pump.

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    1. The previous owner had the fuel pump recall done, he assured me. That doesn't mean it could't fail again, of course. I had an injector failure that was causing stumbles. And now the spark plug cap. Oh well, c'est la vie.

      Overall, modern Vespas are reliable work horses.

      As for dealing with getting out of the left lane at high speed to the shoulder a sudden loss of power, it was a mixture of dumb luck and half decent skill.

      I guess 2010 is gettng 'older' now, isn't it?

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    2. 2010 sure is, David. Bella is only two years older ;-)

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    3. Bah! With decent maintenance they'll do 150K miles! {crosses fingers & toes}

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  5. The spark plug wire on the 250 is a very known problem. The problem is the original spark plug wire is to short. Scooterwest made up new ones that are a inch or more longer. I have had the plug/wire malfunction twice and another failure when a rodent dined on the wire. Some required a tow; all included in the $10 year tow insurance added to my regular policy.

    Now my complaint about the video. The main story was your broke down scooter. No coverage of the cure with video, but we had to watch an oil change on the BMW.

    Every story must have a beginning, middle and a end. I missed that on this one. But a interesting one all the same.

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    1. Ken I appreciate that concern.

      There will be a future episode devoted entirely to the problem and the cure. This medium, YouTube videos, can only accommodate one subject at a time. Anything more ambitious than that quickly becomes too difficult to process and, I think, fails to satisfy either the audience looking for light entertainment or the audience looking for technical help on a problem.

      That, and the fact that I need to get my hands on a replacement high tension wire and cap before I can tackle a real fix. Thanks for the ScooterWest tip, that's my next stop.

      Delete
  6. Too bad about the hiccup in your plans ... but the bbq looked good.

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    1. Karen the BBQ was Texas-envy worthy!

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  7. Glad you made it safely to the side of the road. Bummer that you and Steve couldn't meet up. I am sure you two will again make plans to get up to shenanigans together in no time.

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    1. Thanks Brandy!

      I will absolutely reschedule. I want to time the trip with the twice-monthly Boalsurg Moto Hang. I've been reading about that for years on Steve's blog, and I really want to experience it first hand.

      Delete
  8. I'm a firm believer in why things may not line up and take it as a good sign. You will hang out together soon I'm sure!

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    1. I'm not superstitious one bit, but things do often feel like they work out for the best.

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The copyright in all text and photographs, except as noted, belongs to David Masse.