Spring is Springing!
Spring is Springing!!
And with it is the urge to dust the paintwork down, squeeze into the leathers (that fitted so well last season!!) and enjoy the freedom of the bike again.
Take a little time before you roll her out of the garage and blast down the road though.
If, like a lot of riders, your pride and joy has been cossetted in the garage over the winter, take a little time to check your machine is ready for the road.
Has the battery been on charge? Have the wheels been rotated? Are the cables free running for brakes/clutch? Is the chain free turning and lubed?
A good time to do a thorough P.O.W.D.E.R.S.S.Y check
P - Petrol. Is it fresh and running freely. Fuel can sometimes become sticky if left and block injectors or carb needles. O - Oil. Is it worth dropping the old oil and sticking some fresh in with a new filter. Remember that oil will deteriorate over time, even if the engine isn't running. Don't risk oil starvation. W - Water, or more accurately all other fluids. Check coolant levels. If low then why? Check the 'plumbing' - hoses for the cooling system. Are the clutch and brake fluid levels correct? Remember they are a sealed system so they shouldn't drop. Check for leaks along the hydraulic tubes/pipes. Ensure you feel resistance when squeezing the brakes. Make sure the clutch is working smoothly and the plates aren't stuck. D - Drive. Chain and sprockets in good order? If not remember to change as a set. Correctly tensioned? Too loose and chain could slip and jam. Too tight - may damage gear box. Is it lubed up? If it's dry or rusty - sort it! Shaft drive? Check for smooth action and no grinding noises. Check transmission fluid level - again a sealed unit so if low is it leaking? R - Rubber. Check tyres for correct pressures and tread depth (minimum 1mm). Also check for any lumps, cuts or bulges. If it's been kept nice and dry make sure there are no cracks in the side walls or between the tread. S - Suspension. Check fork seals by compressing front forks. Make sure there are no oil rings on stantions. Rear suspension or shocks - check for leaks and compress to ensure smooth action and return. S - Steering. Ensure there are no knocking noises from the head-stock or notchy feeling as the steering turns. If there is the head bearings may need replacing. Whilst you're at it check the wheels spin freely and the wheel bearings have a smooth action. Y - You!! The last time you rode her you were 'race fit' having been riding through the previous season. Once you're sure the machine is fit to ride take it steady until you've got back into it. Your reactions may be sluggish after winter. Build it up and don't be over confident. Consider joining a local advanced group or give me a call to get you up and running safely for the new season.
Ride Safely and have a great 2017 Season.