Petrosexuals (not motor heads)

Funny how some of us know what’s going on with our motorcycle(s) just by riding and/or listening.  “The carbs need to be synchronized”, I said to a gentleman who asked me about my TX650 during the Nostalgia Weekend in Suches (Georgia, USA). “How do you know?”, he asked, puzzled. “Many symptoms but… you can feel one carburetor kicking in faster the other”, I replied.

I remember catching a ride to my hotel in a co-worker’s Toyota Camry some 15 yrs ago after a long day at the office. I told him that he needed to get the front wheel bearings checked out. That earned me a blank stare from him. “Watta you’re talking about?”, he asked. I simply told him that I felt a vibration on the car’s floor by the passenger seat. The usual conversation ensued and we parted ways. A week later, he called me to say “thanks”. He took the car in for a brake job and the mechanic told him that he needed wheel bearings. Apparently one of the outer races were already cracked. Yikes!

Master Dick Russell pulled a similar one on me at the 2016 Smoky Rally. While watching me push the left carb back in the intake boot (not funny!), he professed from 10 ft away: “It’s the ATU. It’s bad.” We spent a few hours after dinner working on it and, good enough, the 75 XS-B ran great next the day. Issue 332 has the full story told by the Master himself.
Experience? Sure. If you have been working on these things for a while, you develop a mental cross-reference between symptoms and cause but only a gifted few are able to pinpoint a problem from 10ft away, just by listening.

Speaking of listening, my plea to the rally organizers to send me a short summary of their rallies was, for the most part, ignored. Aside from David Hoppengardner (who sent great photos and a nice synopsis – thank you!) and Jeff Hall’s (who is not a member) photos from the Dogwood Rally, I didn’t receive anything else.  Let’s improve that for 2018. I cannot attend all the rallies so I need your help. It’s about securing the longevity of the club.  For that end, many thanks to Hoppengardner and Marty Hallberg (a big Society cheerleader!) for their efforts.  Much appreciated!
John Chaves – jchaves@xs650society.com

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