Click for Callaway, Virginia Forecast

Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Beer & Brakes

So, the Vision had been down for a couple of days. I found the front brake rotor was hanging up on the brake pads. I had another brake rotor, so I figured I would simply swap it out. And... Since I was going to have the front wheel off the bike, I figured I would change the brake pads and bring the tire to the shop and have the 23+ year old tube removed from the wheel.

Let's start with the wheel. I brought the tire to Steve's Performance in Rocky Mount. The tires I have on the bike are relatively new Avon Super Venoms, installed by AllSport Cycles in Roanoke. It appeared, by the valve stem, that AllSport reinstalled the old tube inside the tire. Well, when Steve's removed the tire, there was no tube. Steve's did remove all the PJ1 Balance Plus from inside the tire and also drilled out a bolt I broke taking off the brake rotor.

With the tire back, I started tackling the brakes. First, I opened a beer. I then replaced the pads and the rotor and installed a Speed Bleeder. It turned out that one of the bolts holding on the rotor was torqued all wrong creating a warp in the rotor. After bleeding the front brake, I found I had excessive drag on the front brake. Resetting the free play set screw, I found it made no difference.

This led to rebuilding the front brake caliper. This was a first for me. Removed the caliper from the bike and found the piston very frozen. I brought the caliper to my friend Dave who owns Dave's Metal Shop. He used compressed air and blew the piston out. He then spun the piston on an emery wheel and cleaned it up for me. I brought the parts back home and pulled the seals, cleaned the crap out of the caliper. As it was Memorial Day and everything was closed, I was forced to use the same seals. They weren't in too bad of shape. I ordered new ones for when these give out. Used a vise to push the piston back into the caliper and reinstalled and torqued everything. Bled the brakes again... and then again. Ha! No more drag.

The brakes all work pretty good. Good for a Vision that is. The Vision is known for having spongy brakes. This is the reason Yamaha decided on a dual disc front brake for the 1983 model. Still has the slight Vision spongy feeling, so I will be looking into steel braided brake lines for my bike.....

Saturday, May 21, 2005


Here are my first feeble attempts to shoot video from the Vision. I started out trying to shoot the video from the top of the gas tank, but all I got in the video was the guage cluster and a bunch of tree tops. So, I scrapped those videos. I then moved the camera mount to the front of the fairing, above the headlight. The video was shot with a Wal-Mart special, 2MP, Samsung, point & shoot, digital camera. The following videos were shot on Ferrum Mountain Road between Ferrum, VA and Callaway, VA. This also happens to be the road that I take to and from work every day. It's a good motorcycle road, just watch the gravel in the corners every now and again.

Ferrum Mountain Road 1

Ferrum Mountain Road 2

Ferrum Mountain Road 3

Ferrum Mountain Road 4

Sorry, I had to remove the videos to make room for new ones

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Recently, I have been having some discusion with some folks about the use of a loud exhaust to promote safety while riding a motorcycle. This article written by Pat Hahn expresses exactly how I feel when it comes to loud pipes on a motorcycle. In fact, I likes it so much that I had to reference the article here. Pat Hahn is a certified motorcycle safety instructor and author of the book, Ride Hard, Ride Smart. Advanced strategies for serious riders (car drivers can benefit, too!) Written from the perspective of a motorcyclist, his articles can benefit ordinary motorists, as well. Posted by Hello

Monday, May 16, 2005

Attended the Fallen Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Service today in Christiansburg. The memorial service was held on the front lawn of the Montgomery County Courthouse. Officer Scott Allen Hylton's wife was in attendance and accepted the US Flag that flew over Washington when Hylton was killed in the line of duty. Of course I rode the bike to the service.
 Posted by Hello

Saturday, May 14, 2005

How do you stop the bugs. I hate insects! This is also what my face shield looks like after a good ride. I found a simple and cheap way to clean my face shield is to simply use a wet paper towel. Just wet the towel and lay it flat on the face shield. Squeeze out any air bubbles and then let it sit like that for 15 minutes or so. After 15 minutes, pull off the paper towel, wipe off any remaining bug pieces, then dry with a soft lint free cloth. Of course this will not prevent the bugs from flying straight at your face, kamakazie style, but is a simple... cheap way to remove them. Posted by Hello

Avon Super Venom Tires on the Vision Posted by Hello

Avon Super Venom Tires Posted by Hello

These are the pictures of my Avon Super Venom tires after 1300 Miles. I wet the tires so the pictures would pick up the tread pattern better. I am curious how these tires are wearing after 1,000+ Miles. If someone could take pictures of their "New" Avon Super Venon tires showing the tread pattern, I would like to compare the new tires with these tires that have the first thousand miles on them. I have run these tires since they were new, but can't see how they have worn without seeing a new set pictured. If anyone can help, I would appreciate it. Leave a comment and I will send you my email address. Thanx. Oh, by the way, these tires stick very well to dry pavement. Just watch out when the pavement gets wet... No so good anymore. Posted by Hello

Monday, May 09, 2005

It's Monday, Time to Ride.

I have been thinking about becoming a rat

(See Gene's Site: Rat Run)

And what the heck, it's Monday. Before I left home, I checked the Rat Run website to see about any near-by points. I found one about Castles and another involving the Carroll County Courthouse.

So, off I go. The first stop is going to be a "Castle in Progress" I know of on Wade's Gap Road. I found this one with ease as it's a little more than 10 minutes from my house.

Currently the castle is not much more than a rock observation tower and strange underground house. So, I am hoping this stop will count as two points in the Rat Run, a Castle and a Unique House.

Next, I headed for Hillsville to log the Carroll County Courthouse, but decided to take the long way to get there. I took off over Ferrum Mountain Road and then onto Ingramville Road from Ferrum. Hit Fairystone Park Highway from Ingramville down past Philpot Lake. This is where I found a "One Room Schoolhouse". Cool, another point for the Rat Run.

Once I got past the lake, I hit Route 50 and on toward Hillsville. Along Route 58, I passed Lover's Leap Overlook and stopped for a few minutes. During the weekend, lots of motorcycles come past here pretty regularly. During the week, you get a lot of log trucks (Blah!).

After watching one bike and 4 trucks go by, I decided to take off again. Just as I was leaving, 3 rednecks in a pickup truck showed up and started taking pictures of each other at the overlook. I found this amusing as all three males were dressed in camouflage. I just thought it was odd. Anyway, Route 58 to Hillsville where I found the Courthouse without any trouble.

From Hillsville, it was Route 221 North to Floyd. This is where the speed limit is mostly 55 MPH. However, I found that the Vision is happiest cruising at about 80 MPH. Although, the bike was running really well at 80+ MPH, I realized that at that speed on a pretty red, vintage bike would carry a pretty hefty fine if stopped by the local law. So, I backed it off a little. This is also why I didn't take the Blue Ridge Parkway back toward home. 80 MPH in a 45 MPH Zone would be 35 MPH over the Speed Limit. That an even bigger fine.

Route 221 to Franklin Pike in Floyd. Franklin Pike turns into Five Mile Mountain Road and then I am home. About 170 miles and 4 Rat Run points. It's a good day.

Just testing the Hello Software to see if it's working again...... Posted by Hello

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?