Thursday, July 14, 2011

Time to ride... whether I like it or not.

Monday this week I drove to work as usual in my Commodore. I don't really like the car, but it was a gift and certainly did the job it was intended for. I've just jumped through all the hoops to get it registered again and the plan was to sell it in the next few months and then upgrade to something more to my taste, now that we aren't so broke.

Anyway, back to the story. I drove to work and parked in my usual spot. Grabbed my stuff, locked the car and walked off into work. 5pm came around and I headed back out to where I'd left the car, but was a little puzzled by an empty space. Maybe I parked further down the road? Nope, not there. Maybe the other way? Nope, not there. I guess someone likes Commodores more than me... It's been a few days now and nothing from the Cops. So time to rego the bike and see if we can be a 1 car + 1 motorbike family.

Even though I bought this bike with lots of great intentions and ideas. But it seems that between financial and family commitments, it just isn't that easy to mod a bike to perfection. So between the theft of my car and my lack of time and money, I've decided to change my approach. Fix all the bugs and rego the bike. Then add all the nice mods, as and when I can afford them.

All the little problems are fixed now and this weekend the vital fluids will be added. Some nice, yet cheap, synthetic oil is sitting ready to be poured into the frame (what a strange place to keep oil!) and 5 litres of premium petrol will go in the rinsed out tank. Then some filter oil on the two new foam filters and we'll see if I can get some life out of it.

One of the issues with removing the air box is the lack of a place for the battery. That said, there was no battery in the bike anyway, but I'm told that the charging system is designed to have one and tends to not last long without it.

"So what to do?" (as Doctor Joe would say - I so want to go back to Goa!) Some searching revealed that a few people have been here before and if your really keen you can buy a battery replacement thing from the US. The basic component is a large capacitor that acts like a battery and allows the bike to just get on with running the lights and spark.

After a bit of hunting down the specs I found the right part on ebay UK, for a fraction of the price of the brand name battery replacement in the US. A 19000UF, 25V DC Electrolytic Capacitor with screw terminals. Great thing is, it just fit straight onto the wires that use to go to the battery!

That thing in the bottom of the pic is a pen...  gives you an idea of the size of the thing!

So once I tape up a bit of wiring and double check everything, bolt down the tank and plastics and go for a little spin, it's off to the mechanic for a pink slip.  Lets hope that they aren't too picky and don't fuss about the few little mods there are and about the battery.  The XR600 never had one anyway!

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