I have pretty much serviced the bike myself since it had its 10K service done at the dealers many moons ago. If you have a bit of know how and a Haynes service manual so you can get those pieces to go back together again without a) breaking them, b)busting your knuckles, c)swearing profusely then its not that hard to keep the thing maintained yourself. The Haynes Manuals are pretty comprehensive and will show you how to pull just about everything apart just as long as you have the right tools and the time and patience. And then if you can overcome the biggest hurdle of them all.
What could be harder I hear you say than getting in to all those hard to get at spots, like under the tank and in between the frame to get at those nasty bolts that your normal socket won't fit into the slot because said frame is in the way. Well in my case of late it's been pure LAZINESS.
There were a few things that I needed to have done like lube all the levers and cables, and I've found it hard to get motivated to get out there and get stuck in and do all that. I'd also noticed that after the last 2 -3 rides that the chain was loose after each ride. I hardly ever have to adjust the chain as I am fairly good at keeping it clean and maintained. My cleaning process on the chain is the same as Tarsnakes but I usually clean it a bit more often, with kero and a brush every 3 or 4 rides or after a big ride of several days whichever comes first.
I looked at the chain and checked it at the back sprocket and it had about a 4-5mm gap when I pulled it out at the centre of the rear sprocket. The recommended amount of slack there is only 2mm. Looking a bit further at the rear sprocket I noticed that the teeth looked to be spiked instead of peaked at the top and it was starting to get hooked shaped as well. Yep she's ratshit alright. I replaced the original chain at about 25000 km's, not because it was worn out but because I thought I should as it was getting on in age with some high mileage. I replaced the originals with Renthal Sprockets and a RK chain. The renthal sprockets were quite cheap and made of light weight anodised aluminium.
It was quite easy to get the old chain off when you have an angle grinder handy. I just knocked the heads off of one link and a screw drive wedged into the chain and she popped right off. The sprockets fitted in nicely, the hardest part was finding a socket big enough for the nut on the front sprocket.
|New Chain and Sprockets|
Looking around the dealers whilst waiting for them to find my key I decided to have an ogle at the new bikes. There were lots of sports bikes, tourers, cruisers and sports tourers. One bike really caught my eye and even I surprised myself as I'd never even considered the brand before having only owned jap bikes before. But looking close up I really liked the triumph speed triple 1050, with its trick single sided swing arm and under seat exhausts whats not to like. (Christ I can see a giant sized head across the ditch). Ahhh to little money and not enough time.....sigh.
Over the winter I'd gotten a bit lazy and couldn't really find the motivation to replace the chain, so I thought I'd get it serviced at the dealer. I noticed a difference right away when I got on and pulled the clutch lever in, it was so easy to pull the lever and hold it in for extended periods even in traffic on the way home. The clutch lever probably hadn't been lubed since it was new. It's only about 5km's from the dealer to home, but that's just far enough for some F%#kwit in a blue magna to change lanes into not only my lane and cut me off, luckily I had an escape route to my left as my turning lane just showed up as he did it, but he also cut in front of Mrs Chiller in the car cutting her off and causing her to brake hard enough to set off the ABS in the process of trying to avoid hitting him. Probably some drugged up coke head. He didn't even turn his head and look, I know I was watching him. Tool. Rant out.
Anyway the R1 is ready for our spring time which is poking its head out at the moment. Just one more little hurdle to get over before getting back out there........ stay tuned.