Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Followup to the bad carb

After disassembling the wee beastie's carburetor, I'm afraid her days are numbered. I cleaned out the jets (which were a little gummed up, but not too bad) and probably should have replaced the float, but didn't have the part available. She's running a little better, but still stumbling when accelerating from a full stop. This has me a bit worried with my next cross-country trip approaching. It is really gonna SUCK if I have to stop every hundred miles between here and Pennsylvania and spray carb cleaner into her throat. Besides, it's time and then some that I "move up" to a bigger engine ... most folks consider a 600cc machine too small for touring, and while I revel in my status as the grrl who rides the little bike impossibly far, it probably will be more comfortable on a larger machine.

So, I am pulling the trigger. Ever since running the Iron Butt with Joker, I've had a bee in my bonnet about the Kawasaki Vulcan Nomad, a 1600cc beast. Today after work, I dropped by Burbank Kawasaki with a price quote from another SoCal dealer in hand, and whaddaya know, they beat it by $400. I take delivery of a jet-black 2006 Nomad, zero miles on the odometer, on Friday.

Now I just gotta get the run-in done before heading back east. :)

Sunday, May 20, 2007

WWF Williams AZ

At the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. You like the artsy shot? ;)Just returned from WildWestFest, the RSBS Raven Clan's annual do. The location this year was Williams AZ, next to the Grand Canyon and surrounded by some of the state's finest riding. I had originally planned to be in Arizona from Thursday through Sunday; however, starting a new job at Kaiser cut short my vacation plans and I rode out to Williams on Friday instead. It was great to see my pals, some of whom I only see once or twice a year, and spend some time talking about everything and nothing over the requisite margaritas.

On Saturday, I ended up on my own. A lot of folks had done a Grand Canyon ride the day before and were heading south to the Sedona area. I sort of had my heart set on the South Rim, so that's where I went, riding solo. It was a MARVELOUS time. The weather could not have been finer, and I happily cruised Hwy 64, mainlining the heady scent of pinon pines warming in the sun. I stopped for photos. I stopped for a Navajo taco at a roadside stand. I stopped to take in the magnificence of this part of the country, and it couldn't have been a more wonderful day.

Jen and I rode home together on Sunday, and the bike is behaving badly. She'll stumble badly from a stop, especially if she's been running at high speeds for a while. This makes offramps quite challenging. I'll have to take apart the carburetor to see what the problem is.