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The Road to Fruition: The Bee Crashes Tech Daze


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OK, I waited a respectful period of time and nobody else posted, so pardon another noob/off-brand intrusion.


Until recently, I hadn’t been paying much attention to the Ride Planning forum, so it was fortuitous that jim c PM’d me about the Tech Daze he was hosting on Sunday. Otherwise, I would have missed a chance to see that such an event, and the people who organize and attend it, are not just figments of cyberspace.


Despite Jim’s invitation, I had some trepidation: I hadn’t yet met anyone else from this group in person, I ride the “wrong” brand and style of bike, and I have only a few thousand miles under my belt -- in other words, there didn’t seem to be much I’d have in common with the people I expected to meet. As it turned out, showing up on 2 wheels seemed to be enough. However, I planned ahead and stopped at Lamar’s for a dozen doughnuts first, just in case.


I turned a 15 mile/25 minute ride to Windsor into a 25 minute/30 mile ride (excluding the doughnut stop) by failing to heed the road construction signs south of town. When I showed up about 9:15, a few folks were already there, standing in a semi-circle around Jim’s RT, which he had already stripped nekkid by pulling off the seats, tupperware, fuel tank and exhaust. What remained bore very little resemblance to the model of bike that first drew my eye toward BMW.


I elicited a few chuckles with my doughnut bribery, and then made introductions and shook hands. That put me a little more at ease, then I saw this:




Note to self: Keep your hands off Jim’s stuff!


If anyone ever needs proof of the wisdom in reserving judgment about someone until actually meeting them, they need to meet our host, Jim. Jim’s posts tend to be sparse, but they bear as much resemblance to his personality as his nekkid bike bears an RT in all its glory. Jim is, literally and figuratively, a very colorful person. At times it seemed as if I had gone to a comedy club where the headliner used a motorcycle as a prop. Jim’s banter and jokes seemed to put everyone at ease. Then the work began.


I have only a few observations about the actual tech content of the Tech Daze, most of which went entirely over my head:


1. Ted Kerr is either a really nice guy or there was something at home that he REALLY didn’t want to be doing on Sunday. I’m pretty sure it’s the former. During the morning, Ted made a reference to the old Honda ads and how you “meet the nicest people.” This was after he was up to his elbows in Jim’s bike, showing us how to tear it down to get at the splines that needed lubing. Draw your own conclusion. I hope he got enough pizza for lunch.


2. After a while, Jeff Burns recalled with some nostalgia how he used to say that one of the things he loved about motorcycles was their simplicity. About the same time, which was nearly an hour after the work began, I was thinking to myself that maybe cleaning and lubing the chain on my SV isn’t such a PITA after all.


While the work continued, a few of us wandered outside to admire the other bikes, gear and gadgets that came with the folks (8 or 9 in all) who attended, and chat about bikes, riding and other things, including dogs. My SV may have simplicity going for it, but in the style department, it can’t compare to the bevy of BMWs there, which included a GS Adventure, KRS and RRS in addition to the several RTs. I don’t have much gadget or gear envy, but Greg Poole helped me decide that I NEED a Givi topcase when he popped the lid on his and let me peek inside and hear the echoes from its spaciousness. One of those would be a much better way to haul doughnuts than the bungee net stretched across my pillion seat. And, after talking with Steve Barnhart about his GSs (yes, that’s plural – but now that he has the Adventure, he wants it to be singular again), I’m now leaning WAY toward the Muddy Side for my next bike.


Enough of my rambling. I had to leave before lunch and before the work was done, but I really enjoyed my visit. Thanks to Jim and his wife for their gracious hosting, and thanks to everyone for abiding my participation. I hope to see you all again, and more of the rest of you who bothered to read this, out on the Road.


I’ll keep my eye on the Ride Planning forum more often. Spring Torrey is out of the question this year, but Cody might not be.


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I love reading these tales, Joel! Changes your whole perspective when you've met some of the helpful folks from everywhere. And I've never seen or even heard of someone disrespecting your choice of ride. Heck, I'd be booted out of many an event if that were the case! smile.gif


You are a funny writer, by the way. grin.gif

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Pretty good write up! This Tech Daze was not your typical one though... Usually we're all doing oil changes, rear end and tranny oil changes, TPS zero-zero adjustments, brake line flushes (on 1100RTs though cool.gif), valve adjustments and throttle body synchs. This Tech Daze of a spline lube was definitely over the top thumbsup.gif.


I would like to sponsor a full weekend Tech Daze in my garage sometime this spring/summer if I can find someone of Ted Kerr's caliber to lead it...


Since I don't have my RT anymore, I don't remember what maintenance is clap.gif, but I still remember how much fun it was to work on such a nice bike and the confidence you feel when you can handle some of the stuff that can hit you while on the road.

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Twas a blast! I pm'd Jim and thanked him. I noted to several folks there that the new 'tool' addition to my tool box was a dominos pizza coupon. I'm not certain what happened on the second attempt at re-inserting the tranny, but it seemed a lunch time pizza break was enough to coherce the tranny into its home with little effort that it required on the first attempt.


Great group of folks. BTW, I'm glad you had the SV there. With all due respect to the BMW bikes, having another manufacturer there broke the monotony.




Mike O

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During the morning, Ted made a reference to the old Honda ads and how you “meet the nicest people.” This was after he was up to his elbows in Jim’s bike, showing us how to tear it down to get at the splines that needed lubing.


Hey, we ARE the Nicest People. clap.gif

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I'm sure bringin' doughnuts didn't hurt!


Good hearing from you, Joel. When are you coming down this way? smile.gif

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When are you coming down this way? smile.gif


Hi Peter! There's an outside chance that Team Schnauzer will be in Ventura in July, and go north from there. NoCal and a return to PNW are on the list, but not yet on the schedule. The tough question is "When?"


Did I just hijack my own thread? eek.gifgrin.gif

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Nice post, Joel.

Just FYI: not long ago there was a discussion about "What would you get for a second bike". As I recall the SV-650 was one of the top contenders. It seems to be well-respected.

Sure like to get one myself..

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