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Old 29th January 2008, 15:06   #16
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James: sir...thanks. Nope, haven't really worked my own machine since my 1941 Triumph 350 OHV single- my first bike. That used to be stripped and various viscera lovingly stored under my bed...bores, magnetos, clutch etc. Bought stuff in the gujjri (used parts dump opp Russel market)...V low budget student days, now over 25 years ago. But many happy rides, many happy memories. So, while I know how and prob can if I put my mind to it, I prefer to leave my Blade to the professionals.

Your 97 Blade looks tops. I love the red-n-white combo.

The RR is reflective white. Front has bow-tie shaped headlights. No pics yet, but shall post them soon as I hv some.
hey, do u work on ur bike yourself? in the sense normal servicing stuff, cleaning carbs n all?[/quote]

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Originally Posted by prabhuav View Post
Rajeev,That is one helluva writeup. Now you make me really feel bad about missing the ride. Will definitely make it next week Vijay
Sure. Thks. Missed you.

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netchef, awesome bike! how much did it cost you and how much is it still costing you to maintain
Ballpark 5 lakhs, but hardly expensive to maintain. Biggest costs derive from fluids :-).

IRaghava:thank you, Sir. Shall try.
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Old 29th January 2008, 21:50   #17
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Another interesting post,netchef!! Good one! And nice pics too.
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Old 29th January 2008, 23:11   #18
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oooh! u started with a very nice bike.. problematic but nice none the less!
the RR stickers stands out a lot,, looks good.. but honda cut down the number of stickers on the 98/99 blades! :(
i loved the bow tie shaped lights the 919 came with.. the front protruded out a bit more then the 900, right? but somehow didnt quite like the rear.. it was too rounded..
the blades are bullet proof and nothing usually goes wrong with them as long as u use good oil n gas.. i still remember the shocked expression on my dads face when he saw me empty a 4L (actually put 3.6L) can of engine oil into the bike..lol..
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Old 29th January 2008, 23:23   #19
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how long do the clutch plates last under normal use? have u changed them in the past?
chain, sprockets etc? the rear wheel damper rubbers go for a toss quite easily..
The funniest thing happened when one indicator broke.. the splendor indicator was a direct fit!..lol..
what size jets are u using? slip on yoshi or full system and at what db's?
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Old 30th January 2008, 16:27   #20
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Originally Posted by Nitin View Post
Another interesting post,netchef!! Good one! And nice pics too.
Thank-you. Sir.

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oooh! u started with a very nice bike.. problematic but nice none the less!

If you allude to the Triumph, she wasn't problematic at all. She went belly-up coz I foolishly cld not leave well enough alone (and thought I knew more than I did). They were actually over-engineered machines designed for the rough-and-ready conditions of war, and cld survive anything. I even had the original 'storm' air filter that mounted atop the tank. She weighed a tonne...each wheel around half a tonne. bet she'd have knocked a German tank over if rammed amidships :-)

the RR stickers stands out a lot,, looks good.. but honda cut down the number of stickers on the 98/99 blades! :(
i loved the bow tie shaped lights the 919 came with.. the front protruded out a bit more then the 900, right? but somehow didnt quite like the rear.. it was too rounded..
the blades are bullet proof and nothing usually goes wrong with them as long as u use good oil n gas.. i still remember the shocked expression on my dads face when he saw me empty a 4L (actually put 3.6L) can of engine oil into the bike..lol..
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how long do the clutch plates last under normal use? have u changed them in the past? The last owner did, so I got her effectively with a new set on. She's run approx 15K kms since, and not a sign of wear (advtg of older rider: no wheelies and special effects :-))

chain, sprockets etc? the rear wheel damper rubbers go for a toss quite easily.. Chain and sp are fine as are rubbers...so far.
Hv been lucky: one dashboard turn indicator once flickered and died, but came back with full gusto the next morning/Never figured why.
The funniest thing happened when one indicator broke.. the splendor indicator was a direct fit!..lol..
what size jets are u using? slip on yoshi or full system and at what db's?
Yosh end-can only. Could not afford the entire system. Can't recall the jet size, but think it's Stage II. Dbs very high, but ramps up conveniently so can con the local constabulary.
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Old 30th January 2008, 17:29   #21
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Default Part III: The Sunday BLAST

It's not politically correct to name names, but I just gotta describe some of the chaps and their steeds. Or better yet let's start with the machinery and leave it to the reciprocating, clanking, moaning, alloyed, sculpted, sparking, rubbery, bright...sooooooooooo desirable wheels to conjure up images of the rider/owner. Your own.

First -- if we were to adhere to alphabetic order rather than sequence of appearance –there were the BMWs. Wrong, actually first comes the lone Aprilia from left of stage without fanfare and drum rolls. Grown men with wives and things swooned. Some salivated and, let me tell you the sight of salivating grown men at 6.30 in the am on Residency Rd. is not a kosher sight. Not one bit. She looked ravishing in Italian, Swahili and about 25 languages. Chap astride didn't own her, but the brave guy-if you ask me- was the owner who let him ride-I'd have kept her chained to my bed and posted a guard at the door: a door to which I'd have first fitted Chubb locks and Chastity Belts.

Then came the Beemers- all hulking rorty Teutonic Rommel-Desert-Ride of them. They looked ancient and had-too-much-beer-and-sausage kind of somnolent; incongruous next to the sleek, ready-to-fly feisty Geishas, but looks are deceiving: they kept up with the best. With a PARP PARP from their silencers, they hitched up their skirts and waded down the highway. Panzer on steroids. Somehow, you expected Bach from them. Staccatto, mechanical Bach Cantatas and their musical precision. Bach and SauerBraaten in Goose-step. See you on an autobahn. To Mulbagal J.

After that I'd list the Triumphs if only because we seem to be in spitting-distance of bistros and autobahns, so we can stick with the Euro plot: my FIRST bike was a Triumph and I'm a fan all right. They're still reminiscent of fish & chips and stout, and Yorkshire pudding and tweeds but no longer speak Cockney. And evocatively can b fitting transport to carry yer carcass to Swindon or Blackpool…or indeed Basavanagudi. Triumph still charm. They’re stylish AND they perform…and they have throbbing DNA. And harking to the days of Empire, they strike Back (today’s papers say Triumph may launch in India later this year!). The sort of antecedents that unmentionable companies plagiarized that many moons ago. They revived the brand and how. Mission Imposs? Kind of.

Next, Nippon-Dust. The Screaming Banzais. The Kamikazi Kettles. All Fluorescent Samurai-wrapped in-Sticky Rice, dipped in Soy sauce and heading straight for the nearest Sushi/Saki joint. Paradoxically, they were quite comfortable outside an idli-vadai joint, so there you have it: sweet cultural cross-pollination. I ride one too, so I’m not what the counselors might term a reliable witness. ..but boy do they do it for me. Hit the spot. Kill me with seduction. Swing the cutlet. Imagine a screaming engine tearing out of the mist to the music of 16K RPM..with just about a man and two wheels attached. A blur of man and machine seemingly fused- One Angry Missile with Curves. Imagine one in the hands of a Trained Samurai who can cut and paste her into and out of the oddest and fastest curves known to men w names like Rossi. And Hailwood. Ballistic Missile, and you’re about getting the idea of a machine doing so well what a 2-wheeled machine aught not to be doing.

The Sweetest Kitten Banshee?
600 cc of rocking Jap Baby that had NEVER been near a drop of milk (probably fell into a cauldron of magic potion if you ask me) Rottweiller in the guise of Pommeranian. Audio track you’d hear around a Formula 1 circuit…sweet, so sweet. GSXR 600 with carbon fibre stump silencer near the rider’s boot…and ready for the track. That, gentlemen, is where LOVE and motorcycling began.

The Gear:
Astronaut. Ballet Dancer. Toreador. That’s what these handsome chaps resemble in their resplendent leathers sporting chic striping and crests and buttons and Velcro. A tad kinky, a dash wicked, an iota swashbuckling. Give them a rapier or a bull and it’d suit them to a ‘T’. Or a keg of Whiskey for that matter. The Devil wears Prada but my gents of this romantic plot- for where there’s smoke, there surely is a plot- are in their svelte, sexy Dainese and other names I cannot recall. Hip and aloof and macho. The fast kind of macho.
RIDING PROTOCOL
Like a box of assorted chocolates, this bunch are varied. Some are in the league of the top endurance racers today. I mean it…a 96 percentile at least. So these blokes sashay across the cold Sunday morning track to warm the sides of their tyres. And then proceed to blast off into the mist at warp speed. Maybe 4-5 of them. That’s the first cluster. Next come the spirited speed junkies that do ride fast but not fast enough to suck the air out of their lungs. Again 4-5 of them. After that follow the stragglers like yours truly. Chaps who jump off focus to smell the flowers every now and then and wave to villagers- sort of the PR people of the day.
But the BEST thing about our group is that everybody instinctively knows their place. One is always welcome to upgrade one’s riding cluster, but you better be reading your day’s skills right. You’re either a Rossi or you’re not, and the margin for error vanishes between 2 deg TDC and 2.00016 deg TDC. Yeah, after initial apprehensions of prangs and mistakes and rides ruined, I’m glad to state that I made the best choice poss and that ours is a mature and safe bunch that takes their riding seriously…Never does anyone cross that dangerous line of pushing or daring another rider, and I’ve often seen the more experienced guys shepherding someone new to a bike or just nervous with all the speed-adrenaline. Way to go guys—PROUD to be part of your outfit. You put the pleasure into riding by making it safe.
All ye out there, remember biking is just an indulgence. You all have loved ones and responsibilities to come home to. And more rides. Please ride safe.

Last edited by Rehaan : 30th January 2008 at 19:06. Reason: Formatting tags removed.
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Old 30th January 2008, 22:28   #22
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As best as can be described..with a complete set of details, all sewn together with precision!
Do post some pics from the rides your group does..
Be safe,rajeev!
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Old 6th February 2008, 22:27   #23
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Nitin: am sure, sir, many of the chaps are camera-shy but shall get some of their bikes next time. Hope you got your steed in Texas.
Met a guy just tonight at the traffic lights on MG Rd. He was astride a Bullet...said he had a Buell in the US! Wld love to see one of them.
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Old 25th February 2008, 16:02   #24
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Default The Crash

The object of this missive is not to point fingers, BUT to serve as warning to ALL bikers out there, anyone who's listening. I actually had to face a family comprising of father, mother, wife...who had just received a phone call from a total stranger that their son had been in an accident and could they please rush to xxx hospital!! I saw the disbelief, the horror, the grief.
AND the terror of it will never leave me.

180 kmph. Adrenaline. 1 Nano second. A ventilator.
That's the sequence that unfolded right in front of my eyes when 200 kgs of SBK met 2 tonnes of SUV at a combined speed nearing 300kmph...and nothing was the same any more. The chap that laughed and joked with us minutes ago over brekker was as limp as a rag doll and fighting for his life. All the bluster and swagger of gleaming SBK and that very heady petrol-head aura evaporated in that fraction of a second leaving a highway strewn with SBK odds and ends, and one shattered family.

WHY WHY WHY? Does nobody see it as a sheer waste? Who can comfort that mother or that wife?
The irony of a previous post of mine is not lost on me: I'd just begun to find a comfort zone with a mature bunch that took their riding seriously, but this accident has shaken everybody's faith. I do agree that it's all ordained from above and that these things are as indelibly fated as the next sunrise or the crop of wheat, but then we do wear helmets, don't we? We get our gear right. Who would turn down Kevlar protection and gloves with carbon fibre resistance if they were offered them? Tyres, brake pads heaps of other stuff, all insurance, aren't they? How much of a stretch then to opt for some restraint on the side. Some wisdom to tell you and even I that we're not superbike champions. That YES we don't have the requisite skills and probably never will. That though we may have the money to buy the same bike that a Rossi may ride, we'll never be able to get more than 30% out of it in comparison. NEVER.

Guys, listen to me. Please say those words to yourself every time you set out on a ride. You're NOT out to compete, and you'll NEVER be as good as the next guy. PLEASE SAY IT. YOUR LIFE COULD DEPEND ON THAT SIMPLE BIT OF HUMILITY.

P, my prayers are with you.
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Old 25th February 2008, 18:06   #25
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Sad to know about this Netchef. Let's hope your friend recovers from the accident. We were treated to such an incident not so long back & while that friend of ours too was an accomplished rider who took all precautions & used the best riding gear available, fate had other ideas.

Needless to say, it's prudent for everyone out on our roads to take as many precautions as they can.

My best wishes & prayers are with your friend's family.
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Old 26th February 2008, 09:56   #26
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Sad indeed netchef! But most of the times a small thing called restraint is missing when you sit on the bike. And without knowing the limits people do such mistakes that leaves a bad story to be told.

My wishes for a good recovery.
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Old 27th February 2008, 15:22   #27
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Sad to know about this Netchef. Let's hope your friend recovers from the accident. We were treated to such an incident not so long back & while that friend of ours too was an accomplished rider who took all precautions & used the best riding gear available, fate had other ideas.

Needless to say, it's prudent for everyone out on our roads to take as many precautions as they can.

My best wishes & prayers are with your friend's family.
Thanks, sir. It truly was unnerving. And what shook me up was to see the devastated family.

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Sad indeed netchef! But most of the times a small thing called restraint is missing when you sit on the bike. And without knowing the limits people do such mistakes that leaves a bad story to be told.

My wishes for a good recovery.
Thank-you.
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Old 27th February 2008, 15:31   #28
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Awesome review , Awesome bike . Sorry to hear about your friend , hope he recovers fast .
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Old 27th February 2008, 16:02   #29
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That was a very good short review there mate.You sure have a way with words.Sorry to hear about your friend,hope he's up and running soon.
Try and put up some more pics of your steed.
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Old 27th February 2008, 16:17   #30
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Oh my god,i was enjoying your review and was searching for words of praise when suddenly the ill fated accident creaped in.I am shaken buddie and totally out of words.Let the almighty help him to recover soon and let him give all the strength to his family to recoupe themselves.
ram
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