Thursday 27 July 2017

Car for sale

My Volvo V40 is up for sale on Ebay.

You can view the listing here.

Sunday 16 July 2017

Argyll 190

Following on from the success of the North Coast 500 tourist route, a shorter route has been promoted in Argyll. As the name suggests, it's a route of approximately 190 miles (306km) starting and finishing in Inveraray and taking in both sides of the Mull of Kintyre.

Suitably moody photo of Inveraray I found on the Web

The route heads south down the west coast of the Mull of Kintyre to the town of Campbeltown.


From there, there's a short detour south to Southend at the tip of the Mull of Kintyre, back to Cambeltown, then north to Inveraray by the narrow, winding road on the East side of the peninsula.

Map giving the approximate route

I've ridden this route in the past and the West side has some spectacular views where the East side has a more challenging route. However, weather can be variable - when it is clear this will be a great run, when it's wet and especially if it is windy, it could be miserable! Keep your eye on the weather forecast!

You can do this run in a single day from West Central Scotland (I have), but travelling from further afield, it would be worth staying in Inveraray for  couple of nights and spending a day doing the route. Details of accommodation here. Nearby campsites here. Note: I haven't stayed at any of the places on these websites, so can't give any opinions on them.

Alternatively, you could split your journey with an overnight stay near Campbeltown. Accommodation: here, camping at Machrihanish: here. Again, I've not stayed in any of the places on these websites.

More information: here, here, and a leaflet from Argyll and Bute Council (including a map) here.

If anyone rides this route, please post comments below.

Friday 7 July 2017

More SRZ660 progress

I'd bought a replacement saddle cover some time ago to replace the somewhat tatty, porous and discoloured cover that was on the bike when I got it. I'd tried lining it up and quickly worked out that fitting it to the fairly complex shape of the saddle without folds and creases was beyond my ability, so found a local company who could do it. I took the saddle in and they fitted it perfectly while I waited.

I did a 'test fit' of some of the bodywork (still to be painted) to see how it'll look and am quite pleased with the result.

Yes, even by 90s standards, it's pretty ugly!

The company I went to was Baillie's Car Trimmers in Linwood. they mostly do cars, boats and campervans, but the guy showed me lots of photos of bikes he had done, including lots of classics and one-offs for custom bikes. They also have a Facebook page here.

If I get nice warm weather over the weekend I should get some painting done - at last this is starting to feel like it's on the home stretch!

Wednesday 5 July 2017

Yamaha SZR660 update

As some of you will know, I've got a Yamaha SZR660 that I bought a few years ago. When I bought it, it had been sitting in a leaky shed for a few years, had been dropped on one side (probably just fallen off its stand), and was generally scruffy and neglected.
I started doing some work on it, but it was very 'off and on'. I didn't have regular work at the time, so suffered from 'when I had money I didn't have time, and when I had time I didn't have money'.
However, with both my Skorpions away, I've had some time to do some more work on it. I'd had to strip and clean out both brake calipers and replace the front brake reservoir. I fitted new brake pads and this week replaced the brake fluid. This went reasonably well and it now has two working brakes.
I've been running the engine now and then to keep oil circulating, but have only this week replaced the airbox (with new air filter). It's a bit of a pain to wiggle into place and get both hoses onto the carbs - no wonder most SZRs I've come across have pod filters.

It's now running well without any hiccups or visible smoke.

I've also dug out the bodywork that I repaired and resprayed a couple of years ago. It's in very good condition, but I was never really that happy with the paint finish. I spent hours today smoothing it down with 2500 grade 'wet and dry', and I'll give it another coat or two fairly soon.

Once the bodywork is resprayed it can be refitted and have some small bits and pieces sorted out. I'm planning on having the bike finished and ready for sale before the end of the summer (ha, ha - we've heard that before!).