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- George Washington

Sunday, 27 September 2009

Warm hands verified

Anna had an urgent need for something from Tesco this afternoon, so I selflessly volunteered to brave the mild afternoon and see to it. Well, I tested the heated grips, and they work very well. My hands were thoroughly toasty within half a mile. In fact, I put the setting to 'Low' and they were still toasty. I'm normally a bit wary of a twistgrip that doesn't snap shut the moment you take your hand off it, and last night mine seemed a bit sticky. However, in practice, it's slightly harder than before, but not intrusively so. Left alone, it will return to closed, although not as quickly as before. All was well. The only downside I can see is that the bigger grips make my hands ache slightly. I expect I will get used to that.

In the last couple of days, the bike has started backfiring when I close the throttle. It started with just a few small pops in the exhaust, but today it was a full-on artillery attack as I was coming down a steep hill in town on a closed throttle. Ka-pow! Ka-pow! This would normally be a sign of an air leak somewhere. The bike's exhaust headers were fairly rusty when I got the bike (and they sit in a direct spray of water from the front wheel), and that was over a year ago now, so my money is on a pinhole in one of the exhaust pipes. I'll have a good look tomorrow, but I may be purchasing one of that nice Mr Motad's stainless steel exhaust manifolds before too long. The exhaust 'silencer' can has already been replaced with a s/s aftermarket one, so not only will they match, they will look the biz too.


  1. Surely the air leak would be on the inlet manifold side?

    Heated grips are marvellous but I find that my thumb still freezes as it is exposed to a greater wind chill - hand protectors help with this!

    All the best, N

  2. The hand protectors are traditional trailbike fittings, but I reckon all bikes should have them! They make a huge difference in cold and wet weather. I find the thumbs are OK, but it's the backs of the hands that get cold. Perhaps I need those muff things that MZ riders used to have in the 70s :)

    You're right - an air leak in the inlet would be a more likely reason for the backfiring, and I'll be checking that too. But the exhaust is getting very scabby, and I have known backfiring to be caused by a simple thing like a loose exhaust clamp in the past, so that will be where I start looking. At this age (14 yrs) it is possible that the carb rubbers have gone hard and started to split. All good fun.

    Thanks for leaving a comment, by the way.


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