All posts by Arthur

New ELAM Website Launched

As well as working on this blog, I am involved with the East London Advanced Motorcyclist (ELAM) group and over the last few months have been revamping their website. That’s my excuse for the somewhat sporadic updates to on this blog recently.

The group’s old site was pretty dated, but was WordPress based so plain sailing to update with a theme change. Fresh photos were sourced and page layouts reworked make things more engaging. Whether the IAM is something you’ve considered or not, take a look, any feedback would be much appreciated.

Happy Christmas!

Christmas wishes and Happy New Year to you all!

I trust you all had a good year and are now putting your boots up and enjoying a well earning Christmas break. Weather, man-flu and busy work deadlines this last month have preventing me updating here as much as I would have liked. However, I did manage a great day at the Ace Cafe Toy Run with my daughter. No matter how crappy things seem to be going at times, it’s generally just first world problems and we can be glad of our health. Don’t forget those in worse plights or very ill.

Happy Christmas!

 

2017 Black Friday Deals & Discount Codes

Of course it’s all a marketing ruse to get you to part with your hard earned cash. You know they, they know that. But if you are after some new gear or bike bits, then take advantage and blag yourself a decent deal and save yourself a few bob. Below is a round up of some of the best and most useful deals:

Get Geared

15% discount code (expires 26th) – BLACK17

GhostBikes

On top of this, Ghost Bikes will beat any other deal with 25 off – so get haggling!

SportsBikeShop

Have finally announced their black Friday sale section.

DemonTweeks

Great for bike (or other automotive) maintenance stuff:

More deals at DemonTweeks.

Amazon

Amazon will run various daily deals with random motoring bits going cheap. Look out for cheap TomTom’s, Abus security gear, oil, Yuasa batteries and so forth. I bagged a dirt cheap Abus Disc Lock the other year.

FC-Moto

A German based retailer with much discounted kit.

15% discount code (valid until 29th) – BLACK15FCM

MotoIn

This less well know German based outlook have lots of clothing, helmets and other gear.

10% discount code (order of £50 quid) – MOTOINTGIF

J&S

Currently have 20% off all online and in store.

Let me know if you spot other decent deals and have saved yourself a packet on new kit.

Comparison of Anti-Fogging/Misting Solutions for Glasses

As a glasses wearer, I’ve always struggled with my glasses misting or fogging up on cold days. Whereas as my visor stays clear through the use of a Pinlock, there is no obvious solution for glasses, just a multitude of products to squirt on that claim to stop all misting up. But do they really work?  In the name of science I conducted a mini experiment to compare some popular products to ascertain which were most effective.

The Experiment

I used a number of old pairs of glasses, which I first cleaned then applied the various products as per their directions. As a control, one pair were left untreated. I then placed the glasses in the fridge to cool to 5℃, to mimic a ride on a cool winters day. First I took the glasses out into the kitchen with a humidity reading of 55%, to see how the lenses misted up (or not). Secondly I repeated by taking the glasses from fridge to hot shower room with a humidity reading of 60% to test a more extreme scenario.


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Sixth Sense Skills – Tip 19 (Bad Obs)

I know my video output has been a bit sparse lately, but I do hope you’ll find this one interesting.

There’s clearly a number of lessons to be drawn from this video on planning ahead, avoiding distractions, maintaining safe distances, personal safety bubble and not carrying too much speed into situations. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this. Thankfully the rider only had an injured pride and some minor cosmetic bike damage.

Kriega US-5 DryBag Tail Pack Luggage Review

Commuting daily into the city I normally have a huge top box to carry my huge security chain, work clothes and lunchbox. The top box is very practical on workdays, but total overkill when on a weekend blast where something more discrete would be preferable. Kriega are a quality brand I’ve heard many great recommendations of, so were a default choice when I picked up this US-5 DryBag tail pack from Infinity Motorcycles in Holborn for £50. It is the smallest tail pack Kriega do at just 5 litres and not cheap, but I’m hoping the it’s quality will make it good value.

The US-5 tail pack claims to be completely waterproof and fastens to the rear of your bike onto the pillion seat, however, it can also be strapped to larger Kriega bags and luggage to gain more capacity. Fours straps are provided to hook around the frame under your seat, which then poke out to attach the tail pack to. Otherwise a specific strap to bolt onto your bike is also provided. Two further straps then thread through the bag and simply clip onto the other straps attached to your bike. On my Fazer, the four default straps made for a simple install, all sorted in 5 mins. Then the bag itself can attached or detached with minimal fuss. Continue reading “Kriega US-5 DryBag Tail Pack Luggage Review” »

Hiring a Harley Davidson Dyna 103 in California

Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco

This month I was posted to San Jose for work, but unlike most work trips this one included a stay over the weekend. So, stuck on my tod in California I decided to hire a Harley to explore the area as it’s not often you get chance to cruise down the West Coast freeways on a big hog, definitely on many bikers bucket lists and too good a chance to miss. I hired my bike from EagleRider in San Francisco, who had a wide selection of Harley’s to choose from (but also have others). I initially booked a Sportster 1200, but due to unavailability was given a Dyna Low Rider 103 as an upgrade – nice one!

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Fixing Broken Mounting Lugs and Plastic Welding

Lug holding fairing and lights to bracket

In my recent crash I smashed up the headlight cluster of the Fazer. Unfortunately this item alone is £250 brand new,  however I did find a much cheaper used one from a breaker, albeit missing one mounting lug. But I had the foresight to gather up many pieces from the crash, including some of the bust off lugs from my smashed lights. So my plan was to the weld a bust lug to my newly acquired lights, to get back up and running for not too much money.

Plastic welding is nowhere near as difficult as you may think and doesn’t need any expensive materials. You just need a good soldering iron, some cable ties and staples. The technique I followed was the outlined below in this video by Delboy’s Garage, do watch his howto and subscribe to his channel, he’s got some sound advice.

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Bike Repaired and Tips on Parts Hunting

Following my recent track day mishap, I’ve spent the last couple of weeks patching up the Fazer. It was a tough decision as to best plan, whether to repair back to stock, go naked/streetfighter or just flog it for spares. Especially tough when it’s only worth around £1.5k and will need to be traded in shortly due to the upcoming London ULEZ in one and half years time.

The damage, although cosmetic was extensive, the fairing plastic had disintegrated, the fairing bracket was about to snap, every mounting lug on the light cluster had snapped off, the clocks had lost a lug and the fuel gauge no longer worked. Those parts alone cost close on £1100 brand new… Even the street fighter option was less than straight forward, needing a new headlight, brackets, some different indicators, mirrors and some fabrication to mount the clocks.

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