Thursday, 25 September 2014

Lucy and the Turtle go Laning

It was a gorgeous Sunday sunny evening and I had been at work all day. Steve was away and so I thought I'd just head out and do a little loop on my own, with the turtle for company of course....
Me and the turtle having a chat about the route ahead

There are some easy lanes just close to home and I planned a little route around the villages of Greysouthen, Eaglesfield, Dean and out to Loweswater to head over a couple of my favourtie fell roads.

My first lane was a track that runs between Greysouthen and Eaglesfield - I forgot about the one the runs past the sewerage works!! Its a straightforward lane to start off with and links pretty much up with the lane that heads to Dean. This is a lovely lane and is pretty dry at the moment. There is normally a big muddy puddle halfway will be back soon I am sure. A farmer I guess has cut back some of the vegetation on this lane, which is very nice of them, making it a bit easier to ride!!

Next it was out on the roads towards Mockerkin and down into Loweswater for a ride up Mosser Fell Road. I was a bit unsure as to whether I should do this on my own as there is a tricky section at the start. But I thought what the hell - what could possibly go wrong??!! And I have learnt to pick the bike up on my own....sort of...unless it is stuck in the undergrowth and I drop it again :-)

I made it fine up the first rocky section and then got a bit of a wobble on the next section. I have realised one thing I am doing wrong. When the terrain gets a bit technical it is my natural instinct to lower my weight as if to sit down again. Whilst doing this it means my hands move back and I end up putting on more throttle....which well actually doesn't help!!

Anyway after a few bumps about I survived and me and the turtle stopped to admire the view......
The view from Mosser Fell looking back over Loweswater 

I had a lovely ride up the rest of the fell road and was treated to seeing a fox slinking across the track in the evening sun.  The rest of the riding along Mosser Fell Road is pretty easy enjoyable riding. It drops steeply down into the little hamlet of Mosser itself and then you take a right onto High Bank fell road which is 3 miles of offroad steady riding with lovely views. The light was fantastic, the sun was starting to sink lower in the sky and coupled with the first signs of autumn on the leaves it was beautiful. 
The turtle at the start of High Bank

It was a lovely trundle along High Bank and down the steeper section at the end where I tried really hard not to ride like a granny downhill. I headed back towards Eaglesfield and by now the sun was a big orange disc - amazing. Once in the village I did one of the earlier lanes the other way round - well why the hell not!. I called in briefly to see my parents where I scrounged some food and put on some extra layers for the razz home.

A lovely evening and a great way to build confidence -easy lanes with a little bit of something to push myself.
Me and the turtle checking out the final bit of lane

Sunday, 21 September 2014

Lucy and Steve's little North Lakes Adventure

Tuesday kit to try out...the turtle and the chicken go riding....

 A day off at last.... life has been a bit hectic so Steve and me decided on a nice chilled out day out. We had recently made a visit to Wulfsport, where I had got a bargain on some new motocross boots, a top and a lightweight jacket. Great value for money kit for bashing around the Lakes in. Steve also had kitted me out in some Leat armour which he had bought for himself but unfortunately was too small. Shame, it fitted me perfectly :-)
Lucy kitted out and ready to go - all the gear and no idea!!!
Steve also had a new lightweight jacket to try out. Both my top and his jacket are designed for trials riding but we have both been getting so hot when green laning we decided to try some lighter weight options. I strapped my jacket to the back of my bike for the ride home when I would get cold.

Anyway after posing in our new gear we headed off. First down a lovely straightforward local lane and we headed out towards Dearham and Broughton Moor. After a bit of a play around and missing a couple of gear changes, I got used to the motocross boots. Even if it meant hooking my toes under the gear lever, they felt amazingly supportive and the stiff soles really felt like I could balance on the foot pegs and begin to weight them slightly. 
Steve showing how's its done!

Lucy giving it a go and loving it!

I felt way more confident and definitely up for it today. We headed off towards Greysouthen where we stopped in to see my parents. The main purpose of this visit was so that my mum could take in my pants as they are a bit big and keep falling down!! With that successfully completed we left the village and linked up a couple of lovely easy lanes that take you through Eaglesfield and on to Dean. We came across a very overgrown lane and decided to do a bit of jungle bashing and see how we got on. Jungle bashing it was.....

There is a bike in there somewhere
I crashed into a bush and dropped my bike. The handlebars landed across my foot - no worries with my new boots, but I couldn't work out how to pick my bike up. I was getting worried I might never be seen again - lost in the jungle. But after lots of sweating and heaving I eventually worked it out and got my little Honda back on her wheels....only to drop her again on the other side. Now it was time for the swearing, especially after I got nettled on the face. Steve eventually arrived after bashing his way back through the undergrowth on foot and gave me a hand.
Back on our bikes it was more heading through the jungle and eventually we came out onto a clear bit of lane. I was a little bit knackered to say the least.
Lucy having a much needed rest after jungle bashing
As we headed on down the lane a local farmer came to see us and we had a bit of a chat with him. He was concerned about folk being out here up to no good but soon realised we were pretty harmless. I think it actually helped when he heard a female voice. Anyway he didn't seem to keen on people being around his land so we decided to leave this one alone in the future. 

Off we went and headed towards Mockerkin and down into Loweswater to head over one of my favourites - Mosser fell road.Feeling good I flew up the tricky section at the start and didn't hesitate crossing over the ditch. A big improvement from a few weeks ago. It's a lovely lane with great views over Loweswater Lake. The fell road drops down into Mosser and soon after is another great fell road....

....High Bank which takes you down into Lorton. Someone has done some work putting rubble in the pot holes on this one and it is pretty straightforward. It's nearly 3 miles long and heads along the side of the fell so has stunning views. We stopped to take some pics and it was so lovely and warm I thought I might have a nap but Steve had other ideas....lunch!!
Pooped and its only lunchtime
Talk of pasties got me back on the bike and we headed up Boon Beck and out onto Whinlatter. We stocked up with lunch in Keswick, where Steve had a good natter about bikes with the guys in the butchers/pie shop. Then it was out towards High Rigg and up a lovely little lane to have a picnic on the hillside. Can't be bad!!

Steve preparing lunch

Steve having a rest in the sunshine with a belly fell of chicken and ham pastie - yum yum
Full of energy and refuelled - it was on to the Old Coach Road and we could see the road snaking up the fell side from our lunch stop. I have been over the coach road a few times now and always struggled with the first uphill section which is quite rubbly and has an awkward step. Anyway today was the day I was going to ride it clean ....or so I thought!!

Steve went up ahead to show me the line - left, then middle and for some reason I went middle, then middle. Now I have done this before, so I should have known better than to head for the big step in the middle. Also because I was more determined this time I hit it with more umph and ended up doing a proper lob of not just a fall over. But I was pretty unharmed so got up and with Steve helping me, I got the bike sorted, rode back down the hill and did it again and made it this time. Happy days :-)

I rode up all of the rocky section standing up on my pegs - a first for me and although it felt better to ride this way - I was knackered and had to stop for a rest at the top of the hill!! The rest of the coach road is just lovely riding - its pretty dry at the moment, but can get quite muddy. Towards the end, just before the ford we caught up with a couple of 4x4's. They waved us through and we headed off to the end of the road following a farmer. Steve held the gate open for him and he was such a happy cheery chap - nice to see.

The little Honda next to the 4x4's
We had a chat to the guys in the 4x4's about the future of green lanes etc. Nice guys from county Durham - we chatted a bit a swapped notes about good places to ride and drive.

I was getting cold and a wee bit tired by now. I have learned that I need to forewarn Steve of this as he is a bit like a duracell bunny - his batteries don't seem to run out. But he did listen this time and we started heading back on the small roads through Mungrisdale and out towards Caldbeck which is a lovely ride. The next lane was Fell Side to Longlands - another one of my favourites. It is a gorgeous grassy lane over the commons. It has a ford which is very low at the moment and the riding is very straightforward. 

We then wound our way back home and down a few more local lanes before arriving back at home in time for a cold beer. A very relaxed and enjoyable day out :-)

Sunday, 14 September 2014

Suzuki DR650 - Mark's rebuilding of the clutch

Mark came up on Saturday to fit a new clutch to his DR650, he arrived at 08.00am, a mere 3 hour drive from Birmingham where he lives, the uttered the fateful words 'It'll be done in an hour'!! At 3.30pm he put the last drop of oil in the bike & started it up...

 So armed with a laptop that had the workshop manual on it, plenty of tools,  the replacement clutch kit & some determination, off he set to change out the broken bits.

It all came apart nice & easy except for one bolt which was holding one of the oil pipes in place, the hex head rounded off inside, so a swift sawing of a groove in the head & a very big flat headed screwdriver saw that bolt pop out... easy life...

Next up was to soak the new plates in oil, information varies on this from the workshop manual saying 'give each plate a wipe with oil to Gaz suggesting it was to be soaked overnight, Mark went for 20 minutes in one of my posh Le Creuset pots, (with a couple of food bags in it to protect it of course!).

Putting these things back together is always interesting when you have never done it before, so after a phone call to Geoff, our ever helpful bike mechanic guru, Mark sorted out dropping the plates back into their holder in the correct way & got the carrier back onto the bike, again all fairly smoothly, albeit with some help!!

The bolts that held the spring plate in place had a couple of issues, some a mistake others just that they are old, they basically snapped off whilst applying the torque settings, in the first instance it turned out Mark has the torque wrench set wrong, at 80lb as opposed to the recommended 8lb... oops read that wrong!! After this though the bolts still snapped even tightening them up just past finger tight. They were a bit delicate to remove but with some gentle persuasion, out they came & Mark replaced them all from my little goody pot of spare bolts.

Next up was to refit the casing & re-attach the clutch cable, the casing went on fine, but the cable is knackered really & needs replacing, so Mark popped it on as best he could so we could run the bike. Topping up the oil is a cinch on the DR650, the oil window makes life so much easier. Both myself & Gaz have to guess each time on ours as on my DR350 it goes into the frame & on Gaz's XT it goes into an oil tank behind the seat. The dipsticks on both are feckless though & you can only tell it's about right because the gears change & the bike doesn't run badly!!

After this it was start her up!! The DR started first time & with a bit of adjustment, the back wheel spun up when in gear & didn't when the clutch was pulled in, so far so good.

By this time it was getting on, so Mark & I planned to meet Lucy up at the Wulfsport shop, so a quick clean up & off we set leaving the DR to soak up more oil into the clutch plates.

On the whole, things went pretty good even though it took most of the day, the engine bolts & a few other bolts could do with replacing, the chain & sprockets & clutch cable are all next on the list, but the bike is starting to act like the good bike it should be... great stuff...

Well done to Mark for the perseverance...

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Commuting by Bike

I have been riding to work intermittently all summer. But with the recent good weather I have been heading out on my bike every morning, and it is now becoming routine.

Thankfully my foot injury is on the mend and can now get my bike boots back on - just!

Riding to work has been really helping my riding in general - just being on the bike every day makes a massive difference and its great fun. Also because I'm working a lot at the moment at least it means I arrive at work with a smile on my face :-)

I'm really fortunate that my commute to work can be one of 3 routes:

1. Boring grind on the main road
2. Minor roads through small villages, or
3. A fab mountain pass with lots of nice bends - bring it on!

The view down Bassenthwaite from Whinlatter

So yeah I normally go for option 3 and the mountain pass is Whinlatter. It winds up out of the quiet village of Lorton and into the forest. If I start work at 7 I am riding at 6.30 in the morning and pretty much have the roads to myself. Lots of great uppy downy bendy windy stuff to go at!!

The past couple of mornings have been gorgeous. Yesterday was a wee but nippy but this meant the view looking down on Bassenthwaite lake was stunning with mist hanging in the valleys. The pic is from a sunny day out but it gives the general idea of the view. And in this layby there is normally an ice cream van for a sneaky treat on the way home - bonus!

The other great sight is the sun as it streams through the big sitka spruce trees and it is stunning. This morning I was treated to the best sight of the week - two red deer heading out of the forest. Not a bad way to start the day!

Red deer In Whinlatter Forest

Long may my commuting by bike last - I have the attractive onesie waterproof at the ready as this weather won't last forever!! But whatever the weather it has to be said I am definitely hooked on life on 2 wheels. (However, I'll post an update after I have had a few more soggy bottom and cold finger days!)

Me preparing for a wet ride in Steve's waterproof onesie

And on a final note the other bonus is I can get to work and back for less than a tenner a week - the XR 125 is great on fuel efficiency. Can't be bad.

Monday, 8 September 2014

Fab day out in the sun...

Gaz & I set off early on Sunday to make the most of the great sunshine & warm weather... funny how it was friggin freezing first & last thing though!! We set off at 8.30am, got back to mine at 8pm, 12 hours of great fun, what a day off...

A truly great day out followed on, with over a 100 miles covered, loads of new lanes discovered & as always some pretty good cafes visited too... The Chicken came out to play today too, but the poor ole Turtle had to work! So these pics are just to make both Lucy & the Turtle a little bit more green with envy... hee hee!

Our route took in the following lanes after refuelling in Ambleside...Some of the U numbers have links to YouTube vids, but then we had issues with all things electrical for most of the day, so no comms, no films etc, back to mobile phone pics... oops....

Langdale - U5739 - an easy lane with loads of great views in the bottom of Langdale then over Hard Knott Pass down to Fell Foot to U5001, this is a tough little trail with some cool rock steps on it. See the first one here.

From Tilberthwaite we headed round to Hodge Close for U5004, which again has some nice rock steps on it, this took us to U5015, which is fairly easy generally but it seems to have had a load of chunky gravel put down at the moment so this made the short steep uphill a bit more challenging, then the little uphill rock step that was hard work on my XT but really easy on the DR, Gaz rode it in style as normal!!

Coming out at Knipe Fold we dropped down to U5024 which has grown over quite a bit at the moment especially at the northern end, but its a pretty lane with some nice views.

U5050, the Grizedale lane was next up, new for Gaz & second time for me this week, excellent fun, & we met the only other two bikers I've seen on the trails around here this year, two young lads on an XR400 & a KTM 2 stroke, the lad on the XR was a pretty good rider although we got the impression they were local to the area by the way they rode.

Next up was U5062, then over to U5213 at Colton,, both of these lanes were pretty easy, but again some great views & Moss Wood is owned by the Woodland Trust & has loads of little interesting bits in it, very pretty place.

We did some road stuff to get to Ayside looking for a long looking lane there, turns out it's now a tarmac one that goes past the reservoir & up to Simpson Ground, but from there it becomes Foxfields Lane U5228 which is ace, there is water, open hillsides & you can see right upto the Helvellyn & High Street ridges on such a clear day as we had. We rode down U5244, it's short & pretty but why is there two gates on it?? seriously no need for the second one at all.

We then went over to U5600 & U5590, the limestone lane that runs around the northern end of Whitbarrow & both old favorites & took U5333, Gamblemire Lane down into Kendal for tea & cakes.

By now it was 6pm ish, so we headed back north via a little lane that isn't on the council maps just past Ings, it takes you back up towards Dubbs Road, 581007. We've been told that Gatesgarth Pass has been re-opened as a BOAT again, but there are no signs to say that & the council maps still show it as a deadend at Applethwaite Common, so we need to do more research for this one, we've both ridden it on mountain bikes & it would be cool as a challenge on an enduro!! Dubbs road was OK, best thing about it was the views though, truly beautiful...

After this it was a blast back home, what a fab day & it cost as much for the teas & cakes as it did for the fuel... wow bikes are bloody ace!!

Bring on more days like this one please, some of the best riding I've ever done & all of it on our doorstep too!!

All of the maps with the byways on can be found here: Cumbria County Council Website.

There is more sun to come apparently, shame we have to work, it's so overrated... ;-(
Evenings could be a goer though!! :-)

Saturday, 6 September 2014

History of a well loved XT600 - Gaz's ongoing project

Here's a load of info Gaz just wrote for me about his 1983 XT 600. It's a bit of a beauty which has just undergone a fair few changes to make it lighter, more nimble & to adjust the weight distribution a fair bit... plus to while away a few hours/days/weeks etc...

Hi Steve. Here's a load of guff regarding the XT. Use or abuse all or none at your will. I'll give you loads more stuff than you need but just for your own info/interest here's the lot.

First off, my bike started as a Yamaha XT600 z Tenere (34L) 1983, kick start only model. I bought the bike a couple of years ago as a back lane runabout. It was a bit tired and shabby but in working order and completely standard. The clock reads in Km so I assume it is an import model. I fell for its thumper charm and decided to give it a tidy up/restore things just to freshen things up.

I stripped the bike down and had the frame powder coated. Whilst the frame was away I stripped the engine as it had a persistent knock. The knock was down to a worn main bearing the replacement of which was beyond my skills, needing to be pressed on and balanced, so I handed the motor over to Dave at Sapphire Motorcycles in Kendal, Cumbria. Dave has a depth of knowledge/history with Yamaha singles and was a great resource. Dave replaced the main output shaft at the same time as this was showing signs of imminent demise (not uncommon on old thumpers). The bike went back together as standard with new piston rings, gaskets and small end bearings. The bore was in good order so I simply de-glazed the bore with a honing tool. Fluids, bushes, o rings,and bolts were refreshed along the way as needed.

The bike came back together in a couple of weeks of evenings in the shed and was back out on the back lanes in Cumbria. I was pretty happy with the results. A nice tidy, healthy example of this old 80's Yam single. I had never intended to use the bike off road but living in Cumbria it was only a matter of time before I ventured off road to see how things went. I have no Enduro or MotoX experience but grew up riding Trials down in the Midlands (Bultaco, Yamaha TY & many Gas Gas TXT's). I spent a few great days checking out the local green lanes and had a lot of fun. The bike performed pretty well but lets be honest it was a handful. I tried a few simple trials type sections and quickly decided that that was not a good move.

It was only when my buddy Steve returned from working in Antarctica with plans to do the TAT trail that we headed out onto the Cumbrian green lanes with a view to honing our skills that I started to get frustrated with the XT's off -road limitations. Simply fitting knobbly tires only gets you so far. Whilst most of the stuff we have been riding has been pretty easy going, the Cumbrian Fells can offer up some quite technical sections where the bedrock breaks through the trail surface. With a trials background that's the stuff I like. Whilst the XT600 is never going to be a trials bike I was sure I could shed lots of unwanted weight and vulnerable bike parts. The first thing to touch down in a spill is the huge 5 gallon tank (made of steel) and how often do you really need a three hundred mile + fuel load. It was pretty clear that that tank was not going to last long before it was beaten to pieces. The seat height was always an issue for me, even on the road. I'm kinda average height at 5'10" but always had to find a curb or something similar to boost my height in order to kick the beast over. You can imagine the fun that can ensue when you stall on an off camber trail section.

You know the first bit, too heavy, too big, too tall. I first got inspired after viewing HL500's on-line. These were based on XT500's, folks stuffed the thumper motor into Husky two stroke frames to try to keep the four stroke crosser alive against the new breed of two stroke racers. Yamaha took notice and made around four hundred factory jobs. Many enthusiasts made their own and some still do today. These bikes are things of beauty to my eye and there are some fabulous creations out there. Check out the Aberg replicas on the internet. Looking at these bikes suggested to me that an old school four stroke single might be hidden inside my XT.

My plan was to reduce the weight as much as possible, reduce the seat height and remain road legal.

Stuff I took off was the tank, the seat, the rear fender/light/numberplate etc, indicators, clocks, headlamp, chain guard, speedo cable, tacho cable, hand guards, mirror. stacks of metal brackets and bolts. There's a photo of all the stuff laid out on the lawn. Be interesting to weigh it eh.

Stuff that went on:
The replacement fuel tank is an aluminium job from a 1976 YZ 400 (I wanted a YZ125 as that's what they put on authentic HL500's, some used YZ175's). I would have fitted any of these but a YZ400 came up on ebay and has a bigger fuel load (2 gallon) so I was glad to grab it. Of course it didn't fit and the mounting method was different. I home fabricated some new brackets and modified the tunnel and rear bracket. It came with a nicely crafted aluminium fuel cap but no fuel tap. I tracked down a new fuel tap to fit which was sourced from Yuniparts in Derby. It's an unusual thread and you have to get the correct one.

The seat is a YZ125 seat cover over a modified/butchered YZ125 seat foam all fitted to a custom seat base I fabricated from fibreglass. I cut down the foam to fit the lines of my frame and lower the seat height. Cover was supplied by Moto Sport Services in St Helens. The Foam was supplied by J K Racing UK in Westcliff-on-Sea.

The rear fender is a UFO universal vintage MotoX item from M D Racing products in Somerset.

The headlight unit is a second hand item from a GasGas TXT pro trials bike thanks again to the wonders of ebay.

Tail light is an aftermarket jobby and of fairly poor quality but it does incorporate a clear lens for the number plate. I found plenty of cool well made 'tail-light-only' offerings but as I'm trying to stay MOT friendly I went for the cheap and cheerful one, It failed 10mins into the first ride. I've re-soldered the rubbish connections to get it working again but I suspect I'll most likely have to revisit it with more mods in the near future.

Mini indicators are of unknown manufacturer but are easily found on ebay. I did notice that different suppliers sell them with different bulb specifications so anyone buying them should take care to get the correct spec for their application.

The Dash/clocks were replaced with the very clever Trail Tech Vapor computer and Indicator dash. This little unit comes with sensors that collect data from all your essential components and is customisable for your needs. I purchased a universal model suitable for air cooled motors with 'right-way-up' forks. They come in bike specific kits all tailored to your bike and there is a large range, but not one for my old XT.

Speedo information comes from a fork mounted sensor which picks up a pulse from a magnet. The kit comes with a special (magnetic) bolt which replaces on of the disc mount bolts on the XT. This in turn means I loose the old gear driven speedo cable. The cam driven mechanical tacho cable is also replace by a wire which picks up data from the spark plug lead. There's air temp and engine temp data too. The unit also has a clock display. The little unit can off course process all this data to give you all sorts of info in your display. You can program a shift light indicator and a rev ceiling warning light. The displayed information is shown over three screens and the unit is backlit. I've had no battery drain issues as the unit will self cancel when no info is received from any of the sensors. Don't be put off by the reading/programming stuff it really is straight forward. I've used cycle computers that were far more complicated. I opted to also purchase the Indicator dash. This is simply a plastic surround that has four bulb holders in it. The dash is a bit pricey for what it is but comes with a nice set of little lenses with the usual dash board graphics printed on (high beam, indicators etc) which you customise to your own needs. I opted for the dash because the XT is pretty tricky to get into neutral when up to temperature on the trail, and a neutral light is essential. I also have a indicator light and a high beam light. The connectors and wiring is of good quality and the kit comes with both traditional bulbs and LED's (the LED's are brighter but are +/- specific, this simply means that the current has to run in the right direction for them to illuminate). The kit comes with a couple of mounting bracket options. There's an aluminium bracket and a plastic bar mount. I have fitted mine with the bar mount item but consider it to be a temporary measure. I'll fabricate something after the first shakedown rides.

The old exhaust can and link pipe were shot. I had welded them up so many times that there was little of the original left. So here was another chance to shed weight. I had on my shelf a DanMoto end can and link pipe from a CBR600 track bike project. The Can sat quite nicely on the bike but the link pipe was unsuitable. I could have butchered something together out of mild steel but decided to get a proper job done. I spoke to lots of specialists who could do the job but most seamed uninterested in my project and required transporting the bike and leaving it with them. All reasonable requests but hassle none the less. I'd heard of the skills of a local chap who has a workshop locally and a good reputation for 'one-off' and 'fabrication' with cars, although not a 'bike' guy he's clearly enthusiastic and loves what he does. So I handed the bike and exhaust parts to Jonathan of JDM Dyno in Kirkbride. He made a lovely job of the link pipe by re-fabricating and modding my existing link pipe & adding extra bends all in good quality stainless. It's worth visiting him just to see what he's working on. On the day he did my exhaust there was a mean looking El Camino, A Mk1 Escort (which I've seen on the drag strip) and a super clean Capri sat on the Dyno ready for mapping and a whole bunch of other cars/projects around. If your local he's definitely worth getting to know.
I'm in the process of fabricating a couple of side panels from fibreglass and a paint job is planned to bring it all together (although I'm getting to like the mishmash of different colours and parts). Paint won't make it faster or lighter will it?
The first ride out with Steve and my brother-in-law Roger was a hoot (140 miles mixed green-lane and road. Thanks for the day boys). The weight loss was considerable and enough to make the bike feel completely different. The weight loss means I can change direction easier and correct mistakes as I go. I can choose lines better and react when things go wrong. There are also unforeseen benefits, access to the motor is easier. I can change the spark plug without taking the tank off for instance (which in turn needed the removal of the seat). Moving forward on the bike on climbs is now possible whereas previously the tank width was in the way. Not everything has worked out though, the tail light is rubbish quality and failed straight out of the driveway (now fixed) and the exhaust is way too noisy (Jonathan is fabricating some internals for the can as we speak). I've been relegated to the back of the line for the time being 'cos no one wants to follow my noise (great from where I'm sitting though).
I had reservations about 're-engineering' the XT as now they are becoming a bit rare but now I'm here I'm glad I did. I'm now familiar, even intimate, with every nut bolt and washer of this bike, I know it's strengths and it's weaknesses and have thoroughly enjoyed the build (so far).


So that's the lot from the horses mouth so to speak... hope you like it!!

Have fun all

19 June 2014 - A new paint job on the XT... she's looking good!!!