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Topics - UnmzldOx

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On Two Wheels / Fall is finally here.
« on: October 17, 2020, 02:10:48 AM »
Sadly, this is one of the signs.

October 16, 2020

Motorcyclist Killed in Jefferson Davis Parish Crash

Welsh On October 15, 2020, shortly after 7:30 p.m., Louisiana State Police Troop D was notified of a single-vehicle fatal crash on Faul Road just west of LA Hwy 99 in Jefferson Davis Parish. The crash claimed the life of 20-year-old Brennan Jace Hebert of Jennings.
The preliminary investigation revealed officers with the Welsh Police Department observed a 2001 Suzuki motorcycle traveling north on LA 99 at a high rate of speed. Officers attempted to stop the motorcyclist, but lost sight of him and terminated the pursuit. Investigating Troopers determined Hebert was traveling west on Faul Road when he failed to negotiate a left hand curve and lost control of the motorcycle. The motorcycle slid off the right side of the roadway, entered a ditch, and came to rest in a wooded area. As a result of the crash, Hebert was ejected from the motorcycle.
Hebert, who was wearing a DOT approved helmet at the time of the crash, died at the scene. Excessive speed is a factor in the crash. A toxicology sample was obtained and will be submitted for analysis. This crash remains under investigation.

Making good choices while riding a motorcycle, such as never driving while impaired and obeying all traffic laws, can often mean the difference between life and death. For more information on the Louisiana Motorcycle Safety, Awareness, and Operator Training Program, visit

Troop D has investigated 23 fatal crashes resulting in 25 deaths in 2020.
October 16, 2020

CB500X - General Chat / Garden Hose
« on: October 10, 2020, 09:40:08 PM »

Had a nice commute home this week, but let my guard down at the end. I laugh now, but it could have been serious in another context. A garden hose is a deceptive beast. I imagined just crossing over it, but you'll see how it turned out.

Maintenance and Servicing / Auto CCT ?
« on: December 02, 2019, 03:27:20 AM »
I usually record my rides using a Sony AS15. It sits on a suction mount on the right "middle cowl", as Honda calls it, so the camera is coupled to the bike frame close to the engine. That makes for noisy audio as the camera, its battery, the mount, etc. resonate at certain rpm ranges. A different noise showed up on some recent videos. It sounds like a ball chain being pulled through a hole, like the chain on a light fixture or a window shade. It is not there on every video. I listened to the engine via a screwdriver and did not hear it. But, it shows up intermittently on some recent videos that I have not erased yet. It's there with clutch in or out, left foot on ground or on peg (maybe foot on shifter but sometimes not), idling or revved, stationary or rolling, rough surfaces or smooth. It's frequency seems to follow rpm and is interrupted briefly by shifting from neutral to first.

Have any of you had this issue? I'm thinking it's the cam chain and that the Auto Cam Chain Tensioner is sticking. From what I've seen on YouTube, the tensioner is a spring loaded plunger that ratchets outward and will not retract when pushed back. A recommended "fix" is to use a small screwdriver to retract the piston by turning the internal screw clockwise, and then release the piston suddenly to allow the piston to extend fully to the cam chain guide.

Thoughts and experience with this are appreciated. 

Random Banter / Share the Road
« on: April 18, 2019, 11:30:28 PM »
Alright, to divert continued threadjacks, can we pick up the [bi]cyclist topic in this new thread?
We all have cyclist friends, and many on this forum are cyclists, so I find myself being careful to criticize road cycling only sparingly. Perhaps I'll be more sympathetic if I understand their rationale. This is not to start a fight, so I'm not getting the popcorn.

My evening commute includes a 10 mile stretch of country, 55 mph, two-lane road that is a favorite for local cyclists. There are a few blind curves and no shoulders. This road is our access to a ferry crossing, so every 20 minutes, a platoon of thirty pickup trucks and cars offload from the ferry and then compete for passing opportunities; many trying pass the inevitable one or two slow drivers. Into this scene, the cyclists insert themselves. They are slow moving obstacles in the lane of travel. Some drivers slow and pass leaving the required 3 ft gap. Others slow completely and follow the cyclist until a full passing lane becomes available. Some cyclists are comfortable keeping 1 ft inside the white line while cars pass. Others pair up and ride side-by-side to block cars until a full pass is possible. Meeting a cyclist in one of the curves ensures a traffic slow down since the driver can't see to pass. In the short straight sections, passing a cyclist might involve crossing a solid middle line which is technically not legal, even if acceptable. 

Recently I passed two vehicles in a straight section. As I committed to the second pass, I noticed a cyclist coming in the opposite direction. He had no front light and not enough hi-viz area to detect at a distance. He held his position 1 ft off his white line and I held my line close to the middle. I was able to complete my pass before he reached me, but it bothers me that (for me at least) he was not a visible obstacle when I began the first pass. I checked my 720P video. He's just not there at the beginning.

Each of these encounters is an opportunity for hitting a cyclist or rear-ending the car that slowed for a cyclists. Even the most conscientious driver can make an easy mistake in these situations where difference in speed, and visibility are significant factors.

Are cyclists asking too much of us? Should we be expected to reliably avoid these small, nearly camouflaged, non-illuminated people? Are they imposing too much risk on themselves and us? For my part, I practice keeping a 4 sec gap, but even with that, an abrupt slow down comes up quickly.


CB500X - General Chat / Clipped !
« on: January 30, 2019, 03:41:05 AM »
I've been looking for the right word to describe it. "Collision" is too dire. "Incident" is a word used when you must report, but would rather not report. So I'll just say I was "clipped" by a pickup truck while we both pulled away from a STOP sign making a right turn.

I was minutes into my evening commute being followed too closely by a pickup truck. I had kept one eye on him while making a left turn. He also turned and followed me up to the next intersection where I came to a full stop at the STOP sign. Apparently his stop was more of the rolling variety; the kind where you look left and roll through the STOP sign if it's clear. Well, it was clear to his left, but not in front. I was just pulling away when he bumped my left grab rail with his right fender and broke my left turn signal. The impact was slight and did not knock me off balance. We both pulled over. He waited while I checked. Since the damage was so little, I opted for exchanging phone numbers to settle up the repair costs later. A signal is only $10, so no big deal if he skips out on this.

Yet it is a big deal in a way. I'm now in the other camp. We've all heard it. I roll my eyes when I hear it. "There's two kinds of riders, those who've crashed and those . . . . . ". Yeh, got it. The present reality is that it might be right, at least in a small way, for nearly everyone, eventually. What does it mean? One thing at least; keeping an eye on rear traffic is necessary, especially if you ride more conservatively than your fellow drivers. Maybe one more; we all are survivors of near misses, so be thankful and try not to overthink it.

CB500X - General Chat / Deer Crossing
« on: December 14, 2018, 08:02:39 PM »
Too close. I'l post video on YT when I have time. Going 60 mph on morning commute.

Modifications, Accessories, and Appearance / New OEM Heated Grips
« on: November 24, 2018, 03:42:56 PM »
My 2014 X and I have been commuting 55 miles daily for four years in all of our weather extremes including a couple of days in snow and ice. I've learned how to get through the cooler mornings, less than 40F, by stopping for 5 minutes to warm my hands on the muffler through a thin pair of glove liners. Once my fingers have gone numb and have been re-warmed, they're generally good for the rest of the ride.

That routine is growing old, and it shows how limited my range is without heated grips. So, after my first 29F commute this year, I'll pulled the trigger on the Honda heated grips. Like the hand guards, they're expensive. But, like the hand guards, I'm willing to stick with OEM parts believing these will integrate better than other aftermarket parts.

I installed the kit over the last two days with intermittent efforts during Thanksgiving. It's like I thought, everything has to come off. This kit requires the somewhat tedious removal of the fairing, display panel plus the tank. This is my first time to remove the side panels on the fairing and to remove the panel. I usually remove the whole fairing as one piece for the valve adjustments and the same for the recent fuel pump level gauge repair. The problem with repeated work on all of the plastic panels is breaking tabs, and that I did right above the panel (gripes). The instructions from Honda appear to be detailed on the grips, harness routing and placement of the controller.  The controller is to be sealed and packed behind the display panel and that worked as described. The right grip also installed with no big issue other than discovering that the tank must be removed to access the throttle cable adjustments which is necessary to remove the throttle tube.

Then came the left grip. With regret, I razored the old grip and found that it had been secured with only two thin beads of grip glue. Ok, that's food for thought. Maybe that's all I need on the new grip, rather than slathering the bar with so much glue that will get all over everything per the instructions. So with two thin beads applied, I slid the new heated grip on . . . half way. Then it stuck like an overnight contact lens. Panic. A $200 kit flushed? No. Can't be. Got to get this thing off, now. Pull. Pry. No. This can't be happening. Brake cleaner. Pull more. Bent back a fingernail. Now it's bleeding. Glue all over finger tips and everything else. The plastic switch cover breaks in half. Electronic board is exposed. More brake cleaner. The grip magically lets go and slides back and off. That went south quickly. (Real gripes and regret at this point). Time to re-gather.

After calming down and pealing the glue of my fingers, one still bleeding, I looked at the damage. The plastic switch cover's tabs had indeed been broken. I cleaned off the glue from the interior of the grip. Then, super glue to the rescue. The switch cover accepted a thin bead of glue, snapped together cleanly and held. With that crisis resolved, on to the real problem, how to slide on and secure the grip.

The interior of the grip had been scraped by the bar edge and a few thin strips of rubber had been pealed back partially. Hoping that this thin layer of rubber is not crucial insulation for the heating elements, I pulled them off and continued. Glue was ruled out. Soapy water? Tried, but still can slide on only half way. WD-40. Yes. Surprisingly, the grip slid home and then stuck. Good enough. I'm hoping that with heat any residual lubricant will evaporate and the bar will stick to the rubber with some residual glue to help.

The remaining install involved abandoning the harness routing shown in so much detail by Honda. In retrospect, I wished I had used a few tubes of heat shrink in place of the PVC sleeves they provided. I used the other cable guides for routing and securing the new cables. After rebuilding the fairing and the other stuff, I was glad to find my X started just fine.

Then the real test. Press and hold for 1 second; three green flashes seven times. Heat is on high. With hands on both grips, I can feel the heat build. Wow, that's actually getting hot. Press for 1 second, two green flashes for 80%. Once more for 60%. Then off. Relief for now. Hope there's no damage that shows up long term. Monday's commute will be 43F. I'm looking forward to the test. Come on 28F.

Maintenance and Servicing / Fuel Gauge Error
« on: November 16, 2018, 03:25:21 AM »
My 2014 X just showed the fuel gauge error. The indicating bars "flow" from middle to top and bottom. I'm expecting a broken wire on the pump assembly in the tank if it's like others' experiences. I read the book and most of the posts here on the subject. Is this a common failure? Age related?

On Two Wheels / Multi-Vehicle Passing
« on: June 16, 2018, 04:07:13 PM »
To all on this forum:
I would like to hear your thoughtful views on multi-vehicle passing (overtaking). Here's the setting:

    Rural road divided into single lanes with yellow, middle stripes to mark passing / no-passing zones.
    Road has a section over 2 miles long that is straight as an arrow and flat.
    There are four private drive turnouts intersecting from the right in this section of straight roadway. There is no turnout to the left, just open farmland.
    Road terminates at a T intersection at the end of the straight section.
    No passing zones are established by solid center stripe near 3 of the 4 the turnouts.
    Speed limit is 45 mph.

Every morning this section of road is filled with vehicles moving around 10 mph occasionally coming to full stop or going faster than 10 mph to fill in gaps. The traffic is queued to enter either the private turnouts, or to turn right at the end of the road. The vast majority, 80%, of the traffic is queued to turn right at the end of the road, so the 20% of other traffic is waiting for access to one of the private turnouts. The wait time is typically 15 to 20 minutes to cover 1 to 2 miles in the queue to reach the last turnout. None of the turnouts are queued with cars, so access is free once one reaches a turnout.

The question is: Would it be legal, safe, and ethical for me to pass (in the left lane for US roads) multiple vehicles in this queue to eventually access one of the private drives? By "multiple" I mean an unlimited number.  Passing speed would be limited to 25 mph to increase decision making time.

My answer for the moment is yes, but I want to be corrected if I've missed something. I haven't found a law that would limit the number of cars I pass. The law requires that I pass safely. In particular it requires that I have line of sight to oncoming traffic, pass only in passing zones, and return to the right lane without causing a hazard to the vehicle last overtaken or to an oncoming vehicle. Since I'm on my '14 X, pulling into a space between vehicles is safe and easy. I probably would not attempt this in a car. From an ethics viewpoint, advancing in the queue may seem unfair at first, but since I would be turning out of the queue early, no one in the 80% group would lose their place in the queue. If a vehicle was number 66 in line prior to my passing him, he'll be number 66 again when I leave the queue.

The reason I'm asking is fear of reprisal due to lack of understanding on the part of local police or others in the queue. Maybe I'm wrong about the law, too.

One thought I've had would be to limit myself to passing only 3 or 4 cars at a time, but that would introduce many more departures and entries of the queue and thus more opportunities to make a mistake.

Your thoughts and experiences are appreciated.

Spotted ! Was it You ? / Spotted an X BR South
« on: January 17, 2018, 11:37:47 PM »
Spotted two bikes on River Road south of Baton Rouge on Monday, Jan 15, 2018. The rear bike appears to be a 2014 CB500X.  :158:

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