Saturday, 25 April 2009

Swop it or modify it?

I mentioned in a previous post that I was a bit disappointed with the wear properties of the OE Dunlop rear tyre on the bandit - completely shagged after 1400 miles! After reading a couple of intrnet forums I decided to try a dual compound tyre. Dunlop produce the Sportsmax Roadsmart which gets pretty good reviews, so I got the local bike-friendly tyre fitter to put one on for me. What a difference! Obviously I don't know how it's going to wear, but the bike feels much better to ride - no more squirming around in bends, and seemingly (this may be my imagination) much better general roadholding, although that may just be due to the roads finally drying out and not being covered in mud and crap.

I also had a test ride on a Triumph Tiger - after last weekends'longer ride left me with sore wrists and a numb bum I started thinking at my age it's time to get something more suitable to tour around on, but then a chance late-night trawl through some motorbike web pages turned up a set of handlebar risers guarenteed to take away the pain of touring.

I fitted them yesterday and then went for a run out; they seem to help with the general posture as today my wrists don't ache and neither does my back, and of course they're a much cheaper fix than buying that new bike. I'll give them a longer try-out today after I've finished work; hopefully the thick fog that spoiled my ride in this morning will burn off by lunchtime.

Derek's neighbour Alan was showing me his old AJS 350 single last night (its in beautiful condition) and we were comparing it to his BMW 1200 Adventure - it's about half the size and looks so simple to ride. But then we started to talk about biking in 'the old days', when the bikes needed constant fettling to keep them going, and how everyone fitted different bits to them to personalise them and make them more suitable for their own intended use; thats when I realised how ridiculous we've become - how could I think about changing my bike just 'cos my wrists ached; much better to make modifications to make it more suitable. Right , where's that accessory catalogue?

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