I missed the cruise control on my R1200GS. Now with the 1200 gone, and the G650GS being my primary bike, I was searching for ways to introduce a cruise control-like feature on the otherwise low-tech bike. Until I came across the Kaoko Throttle Stabilizer!
The Kaoko isn’t a real cruise control. It simply adds some adjustable friction to the throttle to keep it in place. The solution is simple and elegant. And dare I say, not as “dangerous” as it sounds. It doesn’t lock the throttle at all, but merely introduces friction to hold it in place. Even with the additional friction employed (ie, cruise control ON), it was still relatively easy to ease off on the throttle merely by twisting it forward. Granted that it won’t “spring back”, but nothing a little twist of the wrist can’t handle.
It’s been almost 3 months since we’ve all been virtually imprisoned due to the Covid-19 pandemic. And I’ve not met my riding buddies in that same period of time. And since this was the first weekend since the Singapore government lifted the lockdown measures preventing social gathering, we took the chance to go for a ride!
We all desperately needed a ride. Of course, being good citizens and residents of Singapore, we kept the group size to a maximum of 5.
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!