Post by queenofslow on Jun 9, 2018 15:37:01 GMT -5
Mark C. today took a quick spin on the Pony (my custom Honda-KTM hybrid) just out of curiosity. He came back with a huge grin on his face. Mundy confessed that he will try the Pony BUT when nobody is watching...
Post by queenofslow on Jan 6, 2019 22:43:15 GMT -5
I realized that I have had the Pony for one year now. Time has flown and I did not get to ride as much as I wanted, but I managed to put about 70 hours on the bike. This is the bike I have used the most this year because she is so darn easy and surefooted on sand. A reliable friend and FUN to ride.
In equine terms, the Pumpkin, my beloved Ktm 250XCFW is a high strung thoroughbred and the Pony is in comparison a good sound, all around quarter horse. Not as fast, but more durable. Nothing complicated, just fire her up and go! And go. And go.
I did not know what to expect with this combination of KTM and Honda parts bolted together, but after a year of use I am very impressed with how well this custom bike has held up. I have only had two problems. One has been the bulb in the front light (darn Chinese, they do not make bulbs as they used to!), and that failed when I had a weird accident. Somehow I hit my head against a low hanging limb (but I do not remember a thing ) and as a result I also forgot that I am the Queen of Slow! No jokes, for a few miles a Darrell on the Husky (Husqvarna 450TE) could not even see my dust.... I was GONE! Like... possessed by the evil spirit of Taddy Blazusiak! Or... should I say that four letter word... F-A-S-T !
Luckily the effect of the concussion disappeared and by the end of the ride I was back to my usual Queen of Slow self (WHEW!), with a huge headache. The only bad and lasting effect of that spirited ride was that the bulb in the headlight had vibrated itself in a gazillion fragments rattling inside the case. (That annoying sound was probably the cause of my headache).No biggie.
The other problem has been the battery. Doug, the mad genius who built the Pony, had insisted on a lithium battery for reasons of weight and fit. Which worked well until the day when, about 25 miles away from home, a very peculiar and sickeningly sweet smell told us that the lithium battery was about to melt or do whatever gruesome thing lithium batteries do, like blow up inside airplanes etc..
An interesting scientific event, I am sure, except that it was about to take place exactly under my derriere.
I was pretty philosophical about losing an expensive battery, until I realized (did not take long) that I would have probably also lost the fuel tank and a few other bike and body parts with it. Easy decision.
In exactly fifteen seconds Doug opened the battery compartment, whipped out a wrench (which I did not know he had since he carries no backpack, maybe hidden in his underwear???) and removed the battery which was EXTREMELY hot. He handed it to Darrell who carried it very quickly and very carefully to a spot on the road with no vegetation. And left it there. We then took cover expecting the worse. Truly, it looked like a scene from a movie where the heroes have to de-activate a nuclear weapon while the timer blinks 37-36-35.... you get the idea.
Well, thankfully we caught it in time and the battery died without exploding and without causing a forest fire. (We came back and retrieved it later with the jeep.) But at that time we had the problem of getting home a bike which has no kickstarter and whose battery was smoldering away. In another team effort we tried push-starting the Pony and -miracle!- she fired up right away and purred happily all the way home. What a champ. Well, now we know that in a pinch she does not need the battery. Always learn something new. I was sure glad that I had opted not to install a Rekluse, or the miracle could not have happened.
Doug later diagnosed the problem as a failed voltage regulator which had overcharged the battery. Replaced the regulator, replaced the battery (that's what money is for) and since then all has been well in my world.
All was not well in Darrell's world, though. In a subsequent outing his Rooster (KTM 505) mysteriously died and would not start again for love or money. Of course this kind of thing tends to happen when:
- it is July
- it is the middle of the day (i.e.90 degrees +, humidity 100%)
- we are at the point of the route most distant from home
- we are in a sand hell (those who ride Ocala know what I am talking about)
and... we have already finished all our water.
Those are the situations which are fun to recall later, but at the moment make one think that stamp collecting would be a far better way to spend one's free time, especially for sedentary folks in their 60ies such as ourselves.
I was contemplating various alternatives, all of which involved leaving Darrell and the 505 there while I zoomed home (relative term) and come back with van and trailer.... maybe to find Darrell's whitened skeleton in the sand, and a bear trying to start the 505....then I remembered that in my magic bag * I carried a towing strap, never used before.
But where there is a strap there is a way, and your Queen of Slow improvised herself Queen of Bondage, and off we went, with the Pony (Honda/Ktm 230) gallantly towing the mighty Rooster (Ktm 505) up and down the hills of Ocala for many miles without a complaint. We made it home just fine, and the problem of the 505 turned out to be a failed stator (which we discovered after replacing coil, cdi and wiring harness...).
And so I want to thank my Pony for all the hours of fun, and Doug for building her..... stay tuned for more!
* my black bag, now in its 15th year of service, is rumored to contain a spare set of tubes and tires, an inflatable raft, a parachute, a full set of tools (metric and standard), a tent, a wet suit and other necessities for the well-prepared dual-sporter.