Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Great River Ride – The Bike Prep

A week or so ago, I nearly finished all the maintenance for the SV650 before our big trip this year. I changed the oil, checked the air filter, and cleaned the chain. The post ride oil and tires have also arrived and are ready for our return. I had the rest of the maintenance done in the spring, so just new tires were left.

I did a quick inspection of the bike, and found the license plate starting to break off. I bolting in some extra metal to stiffen it up. It should be good now.

IMG_5781 IMG_5783

I also added a bunch of lock-tite all around. With special attention to the Givi rack.


I have been quite sore since my Flat Track School crash. My new Q2s were delivered, but my knee (twisted) and tailbone (bruised) have been bothering me too much to do them myself. Bending and lifting have been difficult. I am slowing getting better.

I asked my friend Mike and he agreed to come over and help. I couldn’t have done it without him. Thanks Mike!

IMG_5786 IMG_5789

We used my mojolever and blocks with the cheesy harbor freight changer.

IMG_5793 IMG_5801

It worked quite well after we dumped a gallon of tire lube all over it!

Tire Mounting Lubricant

Mike had an improvement to the tool, that really made it nicer to use. Who knew two little bungees would make it easier?


Mike hard at work. It was much more fun working with someone else.

IMG_5797 IMG_5798

We got the tires changed and balanced.

Balancing a Tire

The old ones still had some good tread, but I didn’t think they could make the expected 4,000 mile trip two-up. I love new tires on the bike!

Mike rode a beautiful Moto Guzzi LeMans tonight:

Mike's Moto Guzzi

We just have to finish packing, and then we can head out tomorrow after work. Less than 24 hours!!


Related Posts:


  1. Chris.. looks like you are ready! Since I just got back from a big trip, here's some advice/encouragement:

    - Take your time! Choose patience and enjoyment over completing your route. The route is easily changeable!
    - Take lots of photos! At least your wife get some shots while on the road, but take lots. Get shots with the bike in it, creative angles. You know!
    - There's a 4x4 Ford around every corner.
    - Sunscreen, Bug Spray & silk scarf around the neck, saves from helment/jacket rub.
    - Prepare to be colder & hotter than expected.
    - Never run out of water!

    Let me know when you plan to hit St. Louis area, I'll see if we can meet up!

    Have a ball!!

  2. Chris, looks like good prep did only use the same hand tools that you'll have with you on the motorcycle right? : )

  3. Bash3r: Thanks for the tips. I should be in St. Louis either monday or tuesday. It would be great to meet!

    Charlie6: Yes, I did use the tools I would carry on the bike for most of it. Changing tires is not one of those things though. I have a patch kit and cell phone for that. :) The SV is pretty easy, just gas and chain maint. The Ural would be a different story!

  4. Dear Chris:

    I have just had to cancel my big ride for this year... I am so jealous. Though I regret you will be starting this trip with a few aches and pains. Take it easy... Keep us posted.

    Fondest regards,
    Jack • reep • Toad
    Twisted Roads

  5. Jack: Terrible news you had to cancel! That would be horrible. What was the would-be-ride??

    Survived day 1. the post is up now. It was a bit sketchy the first few miles. New tires, two-up, still sore, heavy traffic, and haven't been on anything other than my Ural for two weeks. It was fun! The SV quickly reminded me while it's my favorite. ;)

    PS: weather cooperating, I will get your photo tomorrow morning.