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.
It was the long weekend and we took the opportunity to ride!
In prep of our big ride coming up next month end, we wanted to use this 3-day ride to test our bikes and our resilience to long saddle hours. And so we planned for a 3-day ride round Peninsular Malaysia!
The original plan was to ride from Kelantan Lane in Singapore to Kelantan in Malaysia. To make the ride a little bit more interesting, we’ve decided to take the East Coastal roads of Peninsular Malaysia.