Getting someone’s attention

The stock horns on the JFR are a joke. FJRandy on the FJRForum makes a ready made wiring harness for the 138db Magnum Blasters.


I’ve ordered up a set and will install them when the arrive. (although I didn’t opt for chrome, they’ll be black as all horns should be)

I need to redo all my electrical farkles. I have far too many things attached to the battery now:

– Battery Tender lead
– Lead for the gerbings heated gear (of which I need to add another for my passenger)
– Power for the Starcom1

The battery tender does dual duty, I power the GPS from that when it’s not tending to the battery.

I picked up a 6 outlet BlueSeas fuse box to redo all of this but don’t know if I’ll have time before the next ride.

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More details later when I get to hook all this stuff up.

A good way to start the season.

Yesterday I took off early to meet some folks from the FJR Forum.

I got up at 0 dark-thirty and took off to meet up with Nate and Mike. Nate was riding in from West of Indianapolis, and Mike from Louisville. Our meeting point was exit 112 on I-70. I got there promptly at 9am, which was a task given all the fog.


The three of us then rolled on over to exit 202 I think, to meet the rest of the gang at a little po-dunk gas station.


We rolled away from there around 10am, and ran route 800, 255 (which was horrible from a gravel stand point), 26, and a few other numbers.

We stopped and took a little break then picked up a tag-a-long VStrom which made us a pack of 8.


The roads were all good except for the one that was 25 miles of gravel, sand and cinders. It was pretty amazing that no-one went down considering the conditions.

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We rode a good few hours and ended up in Marietta for lunch at a Ryan’s steak house. It wasn’t my pick, and surprisingly everything was pretty good. Good time, good riding, good company. That’s what it’s all about.


After lunch we headed back to where we started. Another good hour and a half of riding through more twisties up 26. We stopped that the gas station, and said our goodbyes.

Mike, Nate and I headed back towards home. We arrived together, we might as well leave together since we’re all headed the same direction. Things were fine until we started to get on I-70. The entrance ramp there is a bit funky. You cross over the highway, turn left on a side street, then an immediate left onto the ramp. Mike almost over shot the ramp, turned left quickly and then *boom* down he went. The exit ramp was covered with gravel and sand.

He went down hard and fast, then slid a good 25~30 feet off the side of the road into a ditch.

Nate and I stopped and helped him pick up the bike. Mike was fine because he was AGAT (All the Gear All the Time). His jacket and pants saved him from any road rash and his helmet kept him from busting his head wide open. He went down pretty hard and bounced right back up none the worse for wear.

His bike though didn’t do so well.



Damage included pretty much everything on the left side, upper and lower fairings, his highway peg was trashed, as were his aux lighting on the left as well. Left side exhaust was scraped up, and he even got the left side of the top case.

Again, Mike was fine, because he was covered. His bike mechanically was Ok too. He rode it home to Louisville. Nate and I followed him to make sure he and the bike were OK.

Outside of Mike’s episode, it was a great day. I put down almost 700 miles and Mike and Nate did almost a 1000.


Time for tires…

I ordered up a set of Avon Storms to replace the original Metzler Z6’s about a month ago, but the weather has been too poopy to get out there and get anything done.

I did get the bike out Friday and commuted to work, made a lunch run, and made it home.

I got 7857 miles out of these original tires, although you can certainly say I pushed that rear a little far. It wasn’t showing treads when I left work Friday and I almost went for a ride today. Good thing I didn’t.

Dad purchased a no-mar tire change for us since we tend to go through some tires and paying someone else to change them is getting old.

First order of business, remove the wheels from the bike. I put the FJR on the center stand then with the help of my daughter Maggie, I ‘rocked’ the center stand up on two 2×4’s to get more clearance.

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I then removed the rear tire first. Paying special attention to the ABS sensor. I found an old sock in the tool shed and put it in that to keep it covered and off of any other metal parts.

After removing the rear tire I pushed down on the bike and had her stick a 2×4 on top of the two stacked 4×4’s under the header to get the front off the ground.

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I needed to put the front ABS sensor in something and couldn’t find another sock so I used a plastic bag that I had laying around. That should work just as well.

Here are the stock Metz’s after 7857 miles.

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There’s still some life in the front, but I’m going to replace them both.

The back is SHOT… Ack!

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More fun tomorrow with the No-Mar as we figure out how to get that thing mounted to something… Dad was right we should have just bought the hitch mount thing and I may order that in the future.


2007 Polar Bear Ride

Gar started this mess two years ago and it was supposed to be an annual thing.

I don’t know what happened last year. The first year there was snow on the ground but it wasn’t as cold as today.

When I lift the house this morning it was a tepid 42 degrees. It had to warm up right? Yesterday the weatherman (first mistake was believing them) was that it would be a high of 50.

It just got colder as the day wore on.

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We hooked up at the gas station in front of the drawbridge inn around 10am. Pat then took us on a quick ~30 mile ride around the Rabbit Hash area. We stopped at the country store (same as last time) and warmed up by the stove.

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Then off to the Hofbrau House for some good eats. My hands nearly froze on the ride to the Hash, but then I wised up and put on my heated gloves. Once they were in place all was well. I think everyone had electrics so no one froze to death.

We left the hash and headed straight towards the Hofbrau for some good eats.  Good ride, good time, good company, and good food.  Can’t ask for any better than that.
For the ride home it was a balmy 36 degrees and the wind was brutal, but I was as toasty as could be.

Thank you Mr. Gerbings 😉

So when is leather not leather?

When it’s plastic that’s when.

OK so it starts like this:

I buy and sell things on ebay from time to time. Yes, it’s true, you can get decent deals on some things on ebay. But you have to know what you’re looking for and be patient. There is a lot of ‘crap’ on ebay.

I do some pretty routine searches for things like, FJR1300 for things for my motorcycle. Occasionally I’ll look for other motorcycle gear too. I ended up getting a great deal on a used Joe Rocket Jacket. A $250 jacket for $65 bucks plus shipping was $80 and it was like new.

So once in a while I’ll search for something like “Yamaha Leather” or “Yamaha Leathers” or what not.

Well, one day this turned up:


Now, I need another jacket like I need a hole in the head. But this is a Valentino Rossi replica GO!!!!!!!!!! ‘Leather’ jacket with CE armor (good stuff) and I could use it on a track day with appropriate pants. Two piece zip-together.

It was advertised as:
Go ! Team Yamaha Moto GP leather Jacket in Size L & XL
and it was cheap, $115.00 US buy it now.

What in the world? So now if something is too good to be true it usually is. I have bought a couple XL things from over seas and their XL people are not the same size as our XL people. So I was a little concerned about that. But no, the fine print says an XL should fit me.


I kept looking. Now if this was a single item from an individual I wouldn’t be so skeptical but it isn’t, there are a few of these things.

Then I find it. In the fine print:

Features: AAA synthetic leather.

Just what is Triple-A synthetic leather anyway? Sounds like plastic to me.

So I asked the seller: Hum, You say leather in the title, but synthetic in the fine print, that’s a little miss leading don’t you think?

The response? “There are lots of different type of leathers. The one we are selling is synthetic PU leather which provides better breatheability and advantages over other leathers such as : Easy to clean with a sponge and water. Impervious to absorption (sweat won’t cause rotting). Highly flexible in cold weather.”

Yeah, that’s plastic. While that’s fine, it’s not good to crash in, which is what this jacket is supposed to be for, to keep you from getting road rash. It’s made from PVC and is very dangerous stuff for motorcycling. This stuff will more than likely melt to your skin in the event of a crash. No good.

Leather is animal hide, like from a cow or better yet a kangaroo if you’re going to drag across the asphalt.

Thanks but no thanks.