Monthly Archives: October 2017

Taking shape


A great weekend with new and old friends round, getting the full shed tour. Nick seems keen to take on the diesel 2-stroke 500cc and I’m right with him. Maybe that should be the testbed for his infinitely variable transmission idea? Further discussion is required!

The conrod is starting to take shape now, you can definitely work out which is the big end! I have a shopping list for EN25T steel bar to make the flywheels and crankshafts from, which I’ll sort when I’m back from London. Graham should be moving the Hercules at the Airfield to a hangar in the next week or so, where it’ll be easier to work on.

Progress all round!!

Meanwhile in the shed….


Bob has been slowly plugging away at the conrod. Next steps are milling the radii around each end as they taper into the rod. Easier to draw than explain I’m afraid.

Bob’s mate Fred came up yesterday and is onboard with the project. Fred is a talented machinist and has offered to start working on the crackshaft. It’s like living next door to engine pixies!

With that happening I gave the drawing office guys at work a nudge about CAD again. They’ve agreed to help me transfer the drawing into CAD so I can build a 3D model. That should move things on a ways.

Slow progress is still progress!

Last on the Paddy Dakar


So here’s the last post about the Paddy Dakar – until next year 😊

I’ve had a little time to reflect since then and I really did enjoy riding the bike off road. As much as it pains me to admit it, and I find this difficult to come to terms with, smaller bikes are easier to ride off-road. A 250 or 400 would have been better for this event, although I wouldn’t have fancied riding across for the event on a 250!!

The mighty KLR has been unstoppable, and with more talent it would be a great tool for this, but still a struggle in places as it’s a tall bike and quite heavy. I’m still impressed at how strong the bike is after all the abuse it’s had, although it has been serviced with regular oil changes I suppose.

Since the event I’ve had a day with it misfiring, so I changed the plug and checked all the wiring around the ignition. That solved the problem, which had started on day 2 of the event. The following day the bike stopped charging the battery! Tank off again (why is it always full when it needs to come off??) and one of the wires to the regulator/rectifier has turned to green dust.

Maybe it’s due some proper TLC, or a new tank and seat to make it look a little cuter? I’m sure I could make it look KiLleR, but I still like it as it is. Hmm… decisions decisions.

Last look back at the start line, crossing it at the start on Day 2 with Brian. Next year I won’t destroy myself with Jameson before the start!!

Custom camping


I did a quick rekky round the field and there were no suitable trees. The adjacent field was perfect, but of course out of bounds! I was getting concerned until I spotted a little shelter right down the far end. It’s perfect!!

I setup a treat and had two nights of warm, cosy sleep 🙂 The other guys were moaning about the cold and noise, but I was fine. It was a bit of a walk to the event HQ, but otherwise I couldn’t fault my accommodation at all.

The Paddy Dakkar


What a great name for an event! Aptly titled for an Irish off-road rally. I came over to do the event as I haven’t ridden the KLR off road for a long time. It’s hard to find trails in England as every inch is owned by someone.

I arrived early and met a chap called Brian with a fine beard. We agreed to team up so I went to setup the hammock. I didn’t manage to wild camp as planned the night before as I left it too late. I also walked into a lake by mistake, but that’s another story!

The event was well signed and well organised. Bigger than I expected.

Tough trails


By the time the event started I was getting a bit concerned. There were over 150 riders, most with decent off-road bikes and all the gear. Trailers arriving with bikes on, full on race vans for teams with gazebos. I was beginning to wonder what I’d let myself in for!

A couple of guys tried to put me off the night stage, saying you couldn’t see anything and would get hopelessly lost in the woods. They weren’t going as they thought it was dangerous, the main reason for running it was just to keep the lads out of the pub the night before.

But Brian and the younger fellas talked me into it and I’m really glad I went. What a blast!! I couldn’t believe the Kerry boy with no lights went out, how he managed not to die was beyond me. I sandwiched him between me and James on another KLR with our main beams on.

No photos from the night stage, but here’s one of the hills we tried (and failed) to get up. In the dark!! Mental 🙂

I should add that I didn’t even attempt it the night before. I couldn’t get up in the daytime either! Hey ho.

Conrod progress


The conrod is coming along nicely, even starting to look something like the final article. Well, with a little imagination!

Progress is slow but I like that. In a world of instant gratification, seeing something evolve slowly is a rare treat.

Twiddling the knobs on a machine is a great way to let your mind wander, and forget about work hassles for a while!