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  #11  
Old 7th February 2020
Crusty Crusty is online now
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Snow.


Itís snowing. Thatís a rare event for Cincinnati. The Channel 12 weather site has a link to all the school closings. And the prediction is for as much as 2 inches in some areas. Why; Iím going to have to go out and shovel my driveway and the walk! AND Iíll have to spread some ice melt around, as well. My driveway is concrete and rock salt eats concrete, so I have to buy those little white pellets of Calcium chloride to melt the ice.

You folks up North can laugh, if you want. The lack of snow here is one of Cincinnatiís more endearing attractions. My first winter here, I had to go out and shovel twice and last year, once. I did have to spread ice melt a few times both winters, but that wasn't often. Today will be the first time this winter that Iíll have the snow shovel out for its intended purpose. I mostly use it for picking up used Speedy-Dry when Iíve cleaned up spilled oil on the floor. It makes a nice wide dustpan that works well with my push broom.

The temperature is supposed to get up over freezing today. Right now, itís 26 F (-3.3 C) but itís supposed to get up to 35 (1.6 C) later on. The average high for today in Cincinnati is 40 F (4.4 C), so weíre running a little below average. That's OK; later on this week itís supposed to get up into the 50s (10+ C).

While I was in Australia, I was at the pool almost daily and one of the lifeguards told me heíd never seen snow. I told him he was very fortunate. I really donít care for the ugly white crap. People like to gush about how pretty the snow makes everything look. I think it makes everything look monochromatic. It turns life into a black & white existence, devoid of everything colorful and joyous. I think thatís part of the reason that I prefer colorful Christmas lights over those bland white lights.

Needless to say, I wonít be out on the bike today. I really donít like falling down, and snow makes the probability of that a lot higher. I have ridden in snow many times over the years, but as I get older, I donít care for the consequences. Last Spring, I highsided on a tar snake in the rain and it took me months to recover. Iím pretty sure that falling in the snow would have similar results.

So my plan for today is to get out and shovel in a little while and spread some ice melt; then spend the rest of the day inside where itís warm and dry. Maybe Iíll play with the 78 a little bit down in the cellar. That would give me something positive to focus on.

In other news, I had a nice long discussion with Don in Buffalo, yesterday afternoon and we discussed various LED replacements for Fluorescent lights. He turned me on to some fixtures with pull chain switches for $22.00 each. We discussed wattage and lumens and light frequencies and I think I have a plan in place for both changing my kitchen fluorescents and putting lights in the basement. The kitchen will get lights from Home Teapot. I want to keep the fixture, so Iíll get a set of ďConversionĒ bulbs. Iíll remove the ballast and install the ďNon-shunted pre-wired lamp holders and Iíll have a pair of Dimmable LED T-8 bulbs in place that should last damn near forever. And the bulbs cost less than $20.00.

We also discussed cheap CD players I found a little boom box for (once again) $20.00. My little clock radio doesnít want to work too well in the cellar; being under ground level makes for pretty poor reception. The fixtures for the cellar were $22.00 each, so for about a hundred bucks, I can have lots of lights with bulbs that should last nearly forever and music to listen to while I play with motorcycles.

Now, all I need to do is come up with the cash to buy everything. Or, at least some things. I can get it all accomplished if I just put one foot in front of the other and stick to the plan.

Sigh; next month.
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  #12  
Old 9th February 2020
Crusty Crusty is online now
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Daytona, 1996

In 1976, I went to Daytona for Bike Week from Colorado Springs. I didnít have a good time and I swore Iíd never go back.

Fast forward to 1995; I was living in Massachusetts and working on a Tunnel Job on a night shift. I was working from 4:00 PM to Midnight and would usually go by the shop for an hour or two before I went to work. Everybody from the shop was going to Daytona, so Guido asked me if I would open the shop for a couple of hours each day while he was gone and, of course, I agreed.

After Bike Week, the crew all had stories about their trip and I felt like I had missed out on something. That kind of ate away at me for a long time.

The following year, as Bike Week approached, everybody was making their usual plans and were loading their bikes into trailers or vans. I had been working steady on the same tunnel for over a year and a half and was feeling the need for a vacation. A couple of days before everybody was going to head out, I was at the shop and I felt my brain snap. I looked up and said, ďIíll see you guys down there.Ē

Jimmy heard the tone of my voice and looked at me and said, ďYou just quit your job, didnít you?Ē I said, ďMaybe not; but I AM going.Ē I called the Union Hall and told the Business Manager that I had a family emergency and was going to be away for a couple of weeks and he said that my job would still be mine when I got back. Then I called my folks in North Carolina and told them that a friend of mine named John was going to be riding down, and would they put him up for a night? Of course, they agreed. Then, the next day, I jumped on the bike and headed south.

I remember when I pulled up at my folksí house. It had turned cold on the trip down and I was pretty bundled up. My mom heard my bike and she came out and said, ďYou must be John.Ē I said, ďYeah; thatís me.Ē

She recognized my voice and almost broke into tears. My dad came out and it was a very happy surprise for both of them.

Anyway, I stayed with them for a day, then rode down to ďThe Worldís Most Famous BeachĒ, arriving on Sunday. We had a friend who had a house in Port Orange and we were all crashing out at his place. I claimed the couch while others slept in beds or on the floor. It was pretty much on a ďFirst Come First ServedĒ basis. The weather was magnificent; especially after a long cold Massachusetts winter, and I immediately started enjoying myself.

Now, Iíd been riding my í88 FLHS since new, and I was getting the itch for a new bike. So I decided to take some Demo rides while I was there. I rode a few new Harleys and I took a Triumph Triple out, and I decided to ride a Buell.

I had been interested in the new Triumphs. They had been available in other countries, and they were just starting to sell bikes in the US. They looked sporty, and I had loved British bikes in my early riding career, so I took one out. It was a major disappointment. It felt like the Yamaha 900 Iíd ridden while I was in Australia two years before. It wasnít a bad bike, but it was the wrong bike for me.

Then I went back by the Harley Demo area and took a Buell S2 out. I talked with a German dude who had just come back from a demo ride, and his comment was, ďNeeds more power.Ē I went out and, though I liked the way it felt, I had to agree. Then I took a Lightning out. Holy Sh*t!!! The front wheel came up and I wasnít even trying! It was a Moving Violation just begging for a cop to write me up! I remember when I got back, one of the Buell crew asked me how I liked it and I told him, ďNext year, youíre going to put that engine (the S1) in that bike (the S2) and youíre going to have a real Winner!Ē

Then, since I had no place better to be at, I took an S2-T out. The differences between the S2 and the S2-T were only a couple of inches. The handlebars were a little taller and the footpegs were a little lower. But those couple of inches took a bike that was OK and turned it into a bike that felt like it had been designed for me, personally. I sat on the seat thinking that I would have no problem doing a 500 mile day on it. It felt like the perfect blending of a Harley and a sport bike. A great Sport-Tourer. It was then when I knew that my next motorcycle purchase was going to be a Buell.

Of course, I wouldnít get my first Buell for a couple of years. In 1997, my ankle got crushed and it took a long time for me to recover from that. And the S2-T was superseded by the S3-T. The S3-T had That engine; and though it didnít feel exactly like the S2-T, it still felt really good. And, to my eyes, it is still one of the most beautiful motorcycles ever made.

Iíve been a firm believer in Demo rides ever since that trip to Daytona, back in 1996. I discovered that the one bike that I was really interested in was the wrong bike for me and a bike that I had only a passing interest in grabbed my soul.

Now, a Demo ride on a new Roadster has done that to me again. Itís far from perfect; Iíll have to make quite a few changes, but I believe that Iíll love it as much as I loved my S3-T.

I sure hope so.
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  #13  
Old 9th February 2020
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Before you are ready to purchase a Roadster, the Pan American will be out.
Try a demo on that. It's growing on me! Only have to change tires!
Although i might need to rob a bank first.

Forgot to add..... Love the "snippets" John, always more please!
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Last edited by harley506d; 9th February 2020 at 19:07..
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  #14  
Old 9th February 2020
Crusty Crusty is online now
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Hallelujah! I See The Light



Today, I converted my kitchen fluorescents to LED lights. The LEDs use less than half the electricity and put out twice as much light. It was a simple enough job that I was able to do it while standing on a step ladder in my slippers. When I removed the translucent cover from the troffer, I discovered that it was a four bulb fixture but only two bulbs have been lighting up. One of the ballasts was dead. The other one has been giving me fits since I moved in. The bulbs came with everything needed to do the conversion. I shut the breaker off and took my time, and when I turned the breaker back on and threw the switch, I felt like I was staring into the sun. What an Improvement! I only put in two bulbs for now, but theyíre a lot brighter than the fluorescents were. Now, Iím eager to put some in the basement so I can see what Iím doing to the 78 XLH.

In other news; nothing. There is no other news. Iím fixing Roasted Chicken & Potatoes & Peas for dinner. For me, itís comfort food. Once again, thereís nothing on the idiot box, so I think Iíll re-read a book. I have another book coming, but itís coming on the slow boat, or the lethargic snail or some equally streamlined method of transportation.

The more I work on (Play with?) the 78, the more things I find that have been jury rigged. Itís not surprising, but it is annoying. It seems like every time I work on it, the more things I need to straighten out. I get tired when I spend two hours working on something and when Iím done, Iíve found four more hours of things to get sorted. But it keeps me out of trouble and it gives me something to bitch about.

Well; dinnerís almost ready; gotta go.
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  #15  
Old 12th February 2020
Crusty Crusty is online now
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On Your MarksÖ


Today is a Good/Bad day. Lots of good things have been happening, but it isnít all good. I guess the best way to describe it is to start when I got up.
I woke up at 5:45 AM. The good part is that I slept through the night. Lately, I wake up after four hours or so and it takes me at least an hour before I can fall back to sleep. But last night, I slept right through Ďtill morning. That started me off on a very good note. The locknuts I had ordered from McMaster-Carr arrived yesterday and I wanted to put them on the 78.

So after my mandatory three cups of Kenya, I went down to the basement and started to play with the XLH. I kept my plans very simple. After putting the locknuts on the motor mount bolts, I was just going to clean and polish. Or somethiní.

You know how it goes, I start polishing the wheel rim and then, since Iím back there, Iíll do the shock. But to do it right, I have to take the shock off, and there you go; itís another day at the races. Wheel, shocks, chain guard, but wait! Thereís more!

I was polishing (kinda) the rear brake backing plate, and I decided to lube the brake cable. Thatís when I discovered that the cable adjuster was pulled into the arm so far, I couldnít get it to budge. It took me a while, but I did finally get the cable out. However; the arm is indicating that the shoes need replacing. I also saw some more jury rigged wiring that makes me want to mutter aloud about the parentage and personal habits of the moronic clown who was playing with the wiring.

However; although each time I work on the bike it seems to be more disassembled when I walk away, there is progress. Itís probably going to be one of those jobs where everything looks completely chaotic, then suddenly, the bike is almost done and it looks good.

Now, halfway through the day, I took a break. I had planned to go to the noon meeting. I checked my bank account and my tax refund was in my checking account. Wah Ė Hoo!. I figured Iíd sort out what to do with it when I got home.

So I went down to the garage and pulled the Roadster out and fired it up to warm up while I put on my helmet and gloves. As soon as I walked out into the driveway, it started sleeting. So I pushed the Roadster back into the garage and decided to stay home.

I came back inside and went online and looked to see who had the best prices. I was going to try the new Michelin Commander 3s, but theyíre too new. Dennis Jerk only had a front and not the rear, and American Moto Tire was pretty pricey, so I decided to hold off and I bought another set of the ContiTours from 2Wheel. Then I went to Del City and bought 25 Feet of 5/16Ē oil line, 20 stainless steel hose clamps and some heat shrink/crimp wiring connectors. The rest of the Refund went on the plastic.

Having spent my refund (fairly wisely, I think), I went back downstairs and continued with my polishing and cleaning. The exhaust that was on it is off and Iím going to put the 2 into 1 Chrome Salami on it. That was the original stock exhaust for a í78 XLH. I called Guido, and he has the bracket I need to put that exhaust on. He wants the exhaust that was on the bike, so Iím going to send it to him.

I cleaned and polished and took things off and put things back on until I felt the stiffness settling into my back and shoulders. That told me it was time to bag it for today. Right now, I have some meat sauce sitting in a saucepan and Iím going to have Ravioli for dinner. It Wednesday, and Wednesday is Spaghetti Day. Iím a little bit stiff and Iím a bit tired and I feel good!

I just got an E-mail from 2Wheels. My tires have shipped. I should have them in 1-3 days. Yay!
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  #16  
Old 14th February 2020
Crusty Crusty is online now
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Fast Shipping

Todayís Friday. Itís also Valentineís Day, but thatís irrelevant to this Snippet. And I just got my package with the oil line and hose clamps. It took two days to get it. I got the new tires yesterday. It only took one day to get them. Things sure happen quickly in these Modern Times.

Thereís a very funny Charlie Chaplin movie by the name Modern Times. If you havenít seen it,youíre missing one of the great movies.

Anyhow, the tires may have gotten here quickly, but theyíre going to sit in the basement until the tires that are on the Roadster wear down to the point of needing replacement. The oil line is going to sit and warm up for the time being. Iíll probably start replacing the old stuff tomorrow. I got 20 hose clamps (they were available in groups of 10) because Iím not sure if 10 would be enough. Iíd rather have too many than not enough. I should be able to change out all the oil lines in one session.

Now; this isnít the first Iron Motor Iíve owned. Most folks call them Iron Heads, but they were known as Iron Motors when the Evo Sportster engines first made their appearance. Yes; the heads are made with cast iron,but so were the cylinders. Bill (whose bike this was) and I always called them Iron Motors. Lately, Iíve gotten into the habit of calling the 78 an Iron Head,but I think Iíll make a conscious effort to call it an Iron Motor. It will be a Tribute bike for Bill and calling it an Iron Motor just seems right.

Anyway, as I said, this isnít my first Iron Motor. I built the 79 XLCH and shipped it to Australia and Terri and I bought the 84 XLH and were in the process of building it when she got rear ended at a red light. It wasnít quite done and the accident totaled it. However, even though Iíve owned a couple of Iron Motors, I feel like the 78 is a new and unfamiliar machine. However, Iím a moderately skilled parts changer and I hate shoddy workmanship so I think Iíll be able to get the 78 up and running. Itís just going to take a bit of time. My plan of attack is to get the oil lines changed, then to get the front brakes working. After that will be the rear brake; and somewhere in there I'll get all the wiring properly sorted out.

I figure that the smartest thing to do is first, get the bike up and running, then, start doing the cosmetic stuff. The cosmetic stuff is where the moneyís going to go. And I donít have money to spare right now (do I ever?). Hell; it took getting a tax refund so I had enough to buy a 25 foot roll of 5/16 oil hose. The battery is going to croak me when that time comes; probably in another couple of months. A new gas tank wonít be cheap, either. Still; itís a project. Iíll use the gas tank that was on it, for the time being. Once itísup and running, I bet itíll be a hoot to ride. I rode the 79 from northern New South Wales to Launceston, Tasmania and back in 1997; I bet this 78 would be fun to ride up to Massachusetts and back, as well.

Before Bill died, we had been planning to ride from Massachusetts to L.A. on Iron Motors. I was going to ride this 78 and he was going to ride the Desert Rat. A lot of people have expressed their doubts about whether itís a good idea to travel on an Iron Motor. To that, Iíll say that in 1979, Bill rode his 78 from Massachusetts to Minnesota, then to Nevada and then back to Massachusetts. And Buzz Buzzelli wrote in American Iron magazine about a friend of his who had 130k on her Iron Motor that she toured on. Bill believed in his Iron Motors and he would ride them anywhere. Theyíre better and more durable than most people think; but thatís true of all Sportsters, in general.

So tomorrow, Iíll get the new oil lines on the bike. If I can get that done in a reasonable amount of time, then Iíll probably start on the front brakes. I have a bottle of DOT 5 brake fluid; Iíll see what I can find out. Hopefully, it wonít take much to get the front brake working. Progress. Itíll all come together, in time.

I bet it would be fun to ride to GeorgiaÖ
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  #17  
Old 16th February 2020
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Good to hear you’re keeping busy, and sleeping better. I’m currently removing 5 of 6 layers of bathroom floor in order to remove the toilet and repair/replace a couple of rotted floor joist. The P.O. saw fit to make a repair before the toilet dropped into the crawl space. His repair you ask? Not repairing the substructure, he added a 4x4 sheet of cement board anchored by roofing nails then topped that with luan secured with drywall screws then secured the toilet back in place. Oh, when the toilet was mounted he used the brass colored door striker jam plates in lieu of fender washers, WTF? Yeah that’s what I’m dealing with.
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Last edited by sportsterpaul; 23rd February 2020 at 03:40..
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  #18  
Old 21st February 2020
Crusty Crusty is online now
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Sportster/Buell Year #2: 1978
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When fleaBay Goes Bad


So, last month, I decided to start working on the 78. My first order of business was to get it running. So I started cleaning it and looking it over to see what it was going to need. I ordered a few small parts from the shop and discussed the bike with Guido at the shop and dove in. One of the things I realized pretty quickly was that I could really use a Parts Manual to both look up part numbers and also look at the drawings to see how things fit together.

So I went to eBay to see what was available. I donít necessarily need pristine, a book with stained edges and dark fingerprints on the pages would work just fine. I also donít need the book thatís listed at ten times the going price, plus only $94.72 shipping. Iím looking for an aid to getting the bike up and running.

So I found one for $28.50 (+ $6.50 shipping) and bought it. I got the confirmation and a message that it was coming Priority Mail and would be delivered between Jan. 29 and Feb. 4. I never got a tracking number, which is a red flag, but I decided to wait and see. On Feb. 4, the mail came and no parts book yet, so I sent the seller a message through eBay, I purchased the parts catalog, but never received a tracking number. It was supposedly going to be delivered by today, but it hasn't arrived. Should I expect it soon? I'm working on a 1978 XLH 1000 and could sure use it.

The next day, I got the reply, Iím looking into this. Then, nothing for a few days.

On the 7th, I sent the message, I never received my manual. I contacted you days ago, and you stated that you would look into it. Since you haven't gotten back to me, I can only assume that you're not going to send it. Please refund my money so I can get one from somebody else. I waited and got no response, so I filed with eBay. They told me I had to wait until the 13th. If I hadnít heard from the seller, or received the book, theyíd refund my money.

The 13th rolled around and nothing, so I told eBay that, and they promptly refunded my money. So I went looking and found one on a different site (Bonanza) and bought it and I left negative feedback for the scam artist on eBay.

End of story, right? Well, not quite. A couple of days ago, I got the message, Hey did you get this manual. I was late getting it out. Also did you receive a refund already?

To which I replied, I received the refund and I used it to buy a parts manual from someone else. I haven't received the manual from you. When it arrives, I'll print "Return to sender" on it and drop it at the Post Office.

Then yesterday, I got this little gem, Just keep the manual if it arrives. Is there anyway you I can send you a feedback revision request over and you can change your negative remark. I will paypal you 50 dollars if you do it. Let me know.



At first, I was willing to give him the benefit of the doubt. His life might have gotten complicated and he just didnít get the book out, or something. And I might have been willing to amend my feedback. But the offer of fifty bucks is another red flag. I bet heíll send it ďas soon as I change the feedbackĒ. And heíll have good feedback and Iíll get the green weenie. Oh; I still havenít gotten the parts book thatís ďin the mailĒ.

I hate rip offs and this sounds like a classic to me.

In the meantime, I got the other parts manual yesterday and itís what I was looking for. I also got the mounting bracket for the original 2 into 1 Chrome Salami exhaust. As soon as I get my stuff from Guido, Iíll have almost everything ready to crank the 78 over. Well; I still need to play with the wiring; I need to connect the turn signals, and generator and I need to remove the old voltage regulator. And I have to get a battery, and Remount the gas tank and seat, andÖ

Itíll be soon.
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  #19  
Old 23rd February 2020
sportsterpaul's Avatar
sportsterpaul sportsterpaul is offline
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Sportster/Buell Model: XL1460C
Sportster/Buell Year: 2000
Sportster/Buell Model #2: XL1200R
Sportster/Buell Year #2: 2006
Other Motorcycle Model: XL1200R
Other Motorcycle Year: 2004
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Yep, John, doesn’t sound like anybody Imwould want to deal with either. Was going to say that many H.D. Dealers have parts microfiche’s on line that have proven very helpful to many of us here. May not be necessary if you have a Manual now, but for future reference. I’ve used “Ronnie’s H.D.” With could results.
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  #20  
Old 23rd February 2020
Crusty Crusty is online now
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Sportster/Buell Model: XL 1200 R
Sportster/Buell Year: 2005
Sportster/Buell Model #2: XLH 1000
Sportster/Buell Year #2: 1978
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Ronnie's only goes back to 1979, and even then, they don't list most of the parts that are in the drawings. I did get the manual that was on Bonanza. It's a reprint of the original, but that's good enough for my purposes.
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