Since I had accidentally pinched the inner tube on my DRZ while self-installing tires for the first time, I thought I’d use the opportunity to attempt a patch repair. Good to pick up a useful skill during this Covid Circuit Breaker season.
1. First, look for the puncture site. 2. Then scuff it up with a rasp file or some sandpaper. 3. Apply a generous coat of rubber cement / vulcanising paste. 4. Wait for at least 5mins to allow the rubber cement to dry. 5. Peel off the aluminium foil backing of the patch and apply patch onto puncture site. 6. Stitch the patch by rolling some blunt tool over it. 7. The patched tube is now ready for use!
Since I had to stay home due to the Covid-19 circuit breaker measures in place, and that I couldn’t ride, I decided to do a little bit of bike maintenance. I’ve not replaced the brake fluids on my G650GS Sertao since I purchased it about a year ago. And now with the DRZ in my stable, I thought I’d take the time to get the brake fluids replaced.
Since it was easier on the DRZ as there’s no ABS pump to deal with, I started with the Zee. Connected the bleeder valve kit to the brake bleed valve and started pumping away.
Took the dirt-ready Zee for a spin and – boy! What a surprise! The 21″/18″ wheels and the Dunlop’s handled the dirt beautifully! Yeah – I know, I could have gotten a proper dirt bike. But since I managed to get the Zee at a great price, thought I’d just spruce it up a little for some dirt fun!
Got myself a DR-Z400! It’s torquey motor, light weight, and Japanese reliability makes it the perfect fun bike! And what better way to enjoy a fun bike than to make some modifications to take it to the dirt!
The first step to making it dirt-friendly is to get a set of larger dirt wheels. The DRZ400 comes in 3 configurations – DRZ400SM, DRZ400S and DRZ400E. The S and E versions come with dirt-friendly 21″ front and 18″ rear wheels, while the SM version has 17″ wheels. So I bought myself a set of S / E 21″ & 18″ wheels for my SM.
Hurrah! I received my Klim Induction jacket and Klim gore-tex waterproof pants accident replacements back! And guess what – they weren’t just “repaired”, they gave me a BRAND NEW set!
Now, I’ve always been skeptical about “Lifetime Warranty” claims. But Regina Specialities – where I purchased the gear from – were extremely helpful in assisting with my accident warranty claim. As some of you may have known, I’ve had a recent high speed get-off on the NSHW on my BMW R1200GS. So bad was it that the bike is now a write-off. I am absolutely certain that having quality gear on me saved my life!
A motorcycle helmet has a super-important role – to protect the skull in the event of a crash. It’s constructed with a hard shell – usually made of polycarbonate fiberglass, and an internal expanded polystyrene (EPS) foam.
While the hard shell provides structural protection and is designed to NOT break in the event of a crash, the EPS is actually, surprising to some, intentionally designed to break in the event of a crash. The EPS / polystyrene foam absorbs the majority of the shock, preventing the crash forces from being transmitted to the head.
It was the last day of the trip and I was almost home. In fact, a mere 300km from home. Southbound along the Malaysian North-South Highway, I just passed KL and was somewhere near Nilai, at about 10am in the morning, the GS went into a violent tankslapping mode. I fought it for a couple of seconds, but failed to regain control. I was eventually ejected from the seat of my GS – at highway speeds.
Did I high-side or or did I low-side? I honestly don’t know. I experienced retrograde amnesia. Till today, I have absolutely NO recollection of the accident as it happened nor the first 10-15mins after that – there’s a disturbing void in my memory.
At (just) 2 years and 7 months, the battery on my R1200GS died. Yup, the dealer had warned me when I sent the bike in for valve clearance adjustments and general servicing last month that the battery wasn’t in good condition. It was tested to have only 174CCA when it should be around the 200CCA mark. In fact, the battery manufacturer claims to be able to output up to 290CCA on this model – so that’s some seriously deteriorated life.
While 2 years and 7 months may initially seem like a respectable age for a motorcycle battery to last, I was disappointed.