Thursday, 7 August 2014

Oh dear, it broke down on me...

Today I set off on the ST heading for Scunthorpe to go and offer up a couple of screens to see which will fit best with my idea of mounting my sat nav above the instruments. Right from early on something didn't feel right with the running of the ST but none the less I carried on. It got me to my location where I tried the screens and decided on one which I then bought and fitted right there and then.
Then whilst riding on the homeward journey the engine started to cut out intermittently. I pulled over onto a narrow footpath along the side of the road, got off and I gave it a few minutes rest, and started the engine fine, revved it up and all seemed OK, so I headed off again. But it was not long before it started to cut out again so to check if I was losing electrical power I decided to flash the headlight to see if the blue main beam light lit when it cut out, and it did. But surprisingly it also picked up and appeared to run better when I did that so to get up the next hill I flashed my headlight each time it cut out which seemed to work bizarly! I soon came across a bus stop and decided this was the best place to stop and take a good look at what was going on.
Off came the seat and the fuel tank in just a few minutes. I then remembered reading a tip on the Moto-bins website saying that one of the very few unreliable parts for these bikes was the ignition coil and it could give an intermittent running behaviour. So out came the tools and I removed the coil. gave it a good clean up with an old duster I had stored under the seat thinking that if there was a slight crack any dampness would cause it to track. I removed the ignition leads and cleaned inside there too. There did seem a bit of dampness and I expect that is where I power washed the bike a few days ago, though it ran fine the day after the power wash. So with a clean coil re-fitted, I started the engine and all seemed well again, so I proceeded with re-fitting the tank and seat ready to ride off again and see what happens.
To my surprise it all ran very well, so I thought it must be that coil faulty. I then remembered that Moto-bins was in Lincolnshire somewhere and I was also in Lincolnshire right now too so I checked their website for the address and then used Google maps on my phone to see how close I was. It was in fact south east of me so still on my way home all be it away from my planned route. I decided to head over in that direction and see if I could make it, or close to it so I could buy a new coil. Well the bike went well and I popped in to Moto-bins and purchased one of the new type replacement ignition coils.
Not quite how I intended the day to go but a great learning experience showing that these bikes can be fixed on the side of the road quite easily!

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