March 28th, 2008

Who knows what evil lurks in the heart of men?

The Shadow Knows.

As kids we used to ride dirt bikes. I was poor so what I had was a old street bike that didn't even have first gear. But I used to ride. I always wanted to ride again. Then my mother started ridding because she always wanted to. Somehow she ended up with 4 bikes. So she said if I was to get my permit I could have one. So I did.

This is my shadow.

The bike has set unloved for 2 years. First step show the bike some love.

The first issue I had was the battery. It was dead and would not hold a charge. Nothing to be done but replace it. But when I got the replacement it was the wrong size. This disappointed me greatly because the bike will not run without a battery. That is why it is hooked up to a charger in the pic. So I had to order a battery and wait until yesterday to get it. I let it charge over night.

The second issue I had was the air filter. Not that the old one was really bad, but the fact there was a mouse nest in the air filter housing made me decide to just replace it. That is once I finally managed to get allot of mouse bedding out of the bike. I had to order an air filter also. It came in yesterday.

Next issue was spark plugs. I thought this would be east. I see two plugs and it was easy to get them but when I asked for the plugs the guy gave me 4. WTH I took them home anyways. I replaced the two plugs and one of the old plugs had no gap when I took it out. When I took the battery back I asked and the guy said there are definitely 4. So I went in search of. There hidden in the head I saw two spark plugs. I put my wrench down in the hole and... nothing. They can not be reached. So I went to a bike shop just to get a long spark plug wrench... they didn't have one. And the hardware store didn't, and the auto parts store, then another hardware store then 3 more bike shops. I found a place that could order me one for $20 or $50 for all the special tools! WTF. So I decided to spend some time being rejected. Meanwhile the plug with no gap had it's replacement become gapless. So I started messing with it and got a host of theories but no solution yet. It is my biggest concern. Out of the blue yesterday I saw a short 18mm socket. I bought it on a whim and L I B it fits. I changed one of the spark plugs in the head last night but it required alot of work and a fisher magnet to do so I am not rushing to do the other yet.

The oil most likely had not been changed in years so I had to put new oil in the thing. I got a oil filter and some oil, but I was worried about the oil filter looking like a different size. So I decided I needed to make sure I got the old oil filter off in one peace. So I bought a oil filter wrench. It fit the new filter but not the old. So I had to go back and get another oil filter wrench. Low and behold I got the old filter off. I slipped the new one on!! I started the bike!!!! I FORGOT TO CHECK THE GASKET!!!! I LEEKED 2 quarts of oil on the garage floor!!!! I took the filter back off removed the extra gasket and put it back together. Today I have to buy two quarts of oil to replace whats now begin soaked up by kitty litter.

Then there is the back tire it's bald. I ordered a new one and have been researching it all week. It has come in and I have decided that I would rather someone else out it on. To much work for me.

Then came the job of registering it. I knew it needed to be insured first. That was the easy part. I also seem to be a good risk because I qualify for the lowest cost insurance allowed. So I took my new insurance forms signed notarized titel and my check book to the registers office. Seems I need to have the bike there, my mechanic, or a rubbing of the bikes serial numbers. Well I can;t ride my bike there because I need it registered first. Pointing out that I was my own mechanic did not impress them. So I was left going home and getting a rubbing of my serial number. I am not sure why. I guess people are coming from out of state with titels from bikes they down have and paying to get plates and registered and then just sitting back and laughing at having spent $100 when they don't even have a bike. But I got the rubbing and got a plate.

I also ordered a new helmet but it's not in yet.

I am ready to take the bike for a test run.

To be done...

Regap the plugs and make sure the weird plug is ok. (replace the last plug)
Have the tire put on.
Clean the connection on the turn signal
Have the bike inspected.
Clean the carb.
Clean and polish the bike.

I have a maintenance book coming in that might give me more info on things I need to do.