Weekend Adventures ~ Change in Plans ~ Call In the Mechanic (dad)!
Last year, my dad and I went on a riding trip to Arkansas. It was a blast!!!
We rode twisty roads, dodged storms, took detours that looked cool, spent some time riding Route 66, and explored the area of MO and AR. We haven't traveled, just the two of us, for I don't remember how long, so it was long overdue and such a great experience! I got to show him around my favorite place ever - Eureka Springs, AR - and he got to experience all the area had to offer. We had a great trip and decided to do an annual riding trip. So this year, we were both coming back from a SD adventure - me, riding with the girls, and him (and my mom) taking the grandkids out there for a week. Needless to say, there was little time to prepare for a turn-around adventure and since we are both 'last minute' people, we talked briefly 2 days prior to our set departure date and had no plans and no destination in mind. We threw a few ideas back and forth, but in the end, we decided to wait to see how the weather played out and instead of picking a destination and ending up riding in rain all week, we would wait and wander and go with the flow. This drives my mom nuts, but my dad and I are planners in our own ways, yet, go where the wind takes us type of people. A busy week of travels, followed by little recoup time, and lots of additional work to be done in between, led to us having the idea of heading north through Canada and around Lake Superior. I packed last minute, as usual, and headed out Thursday morning towards I Falls/near the Canadian border. I needed to do an oil change and again waited to do it until the last minute, so having brought up oil change stuff, I started the process TH night. Went to put the oil plug back in and it got tight, then immed loose and just kept spinning. Shoot. I know the signs and this is not good. I pull the plug back out and sure enough, it was caked with aluminum shavings. No Bueno.
The plug itself was well intact. Not stripped, not worn, no visible signs of wear whatsoever. My dad took a look into the crankshaft and it appears that the crankcase threads were giving out. Perhaps I had done way too many oil changes on such a young bike.. IDK. The area of strippage was nearest the crank case.
Take a step back to note that I am super anal about oil changes - I always start the plug by hand to make sure its threads align. I always use a torque wrench and double check the specs even though I know its 19-20Nm. I always make sure the hex is 100% in the bolt before starting to loosen or tighten. I am kind of a paranoid freak when it comes to stripping bolts. I know its bad and try my best to prevent it. Yet, here I was, TH night, when we are supposed to leave at the crack of dawn for North... and suddenly, plans are 100% halted. I was both pissed and sad at the same time. I know what it meant.
In the farthest northern corner of MN, there are no stores open that sell bike (or auto) parts past 7pm. There are barely any stores that sell the stuff, period. I have no method of transportation elsewhere (well, I could use one of the parents vehicles,.. but)... I frantically search the Victory forums for the best fix. I search the TCVR site to see what others have done, as I know and trust those folks. I search random sites and random links and in a frantic state of mind, know I need to fix the problem but don't know where I am going to get the parts to do it ASAP. And then, a light!! AMAZON PRIME!!!! Amazon Prime has EVERYTHING!
The Victory forums said the Time Sert is THE BEST fix. I find one on Amazon Prime... there were only 3 left... I search the forums for other miscellaneous things I should get to make the process easier and order all of those too. I select overnight priority shipping and am both bummed and pleased to see that overnight is available. I order the $180 of parts and tools and select "shipment notifications ON"... and then we wait. We prepped the bike for the big day.. we drained the fuel out, drained the remaining oil out, removed the saddlebags, and figured out the best angle to work on her. The lift was not going to cut it - it would block the area in which we needed to work.
We decide that tipping the bike over onto the sides of the crash bars is our best bet. I apologize to my bike as I lay her all the way over, securely on blankets and propping her up with boards so she wouldn't move. She looked so sad.
Yes, my bike has feelings LOL.
In the morning, I log into Amazon to track my packages. They are out for delivery on Fed Ex. "Fed Ex usually delivers in the morning" my dad says... We sit out in the driveway/garage anxiously awaiting... They live on the end of a dirt road several miles out of town, so you can literally hear every vehicles 10 miles before it gets there. And its a dead end road... so the vehicle that slowed down out on the next road down, then turned onto the road butting up next to my parents, then turned onto the dead end road HAD to be Fed Ex!! 11:30am... and HOORAY!!!!!
My dream come true!!!! The guy barely has time to get our of his truck and I quickly sprint over and meet him at the back of his truck as he opens the door to find the goods. "You are my new best friend today!? I say eagerly... He replied that this was the best compliment he has had.. all day. Lol. I get the packages and start ripping them open, we are ready to WORK! Mind you, I have NO idea what to do and no idead how this all works. Thankfully, my dad has the patience of a saint and less severe case of Squirrel-It is than I do.. so he reads through the directions and says "This shouldn't be too hard". Inside, I cringe thinking... we are about to drill into my crankcase... I hope you are right!!!!
We got through the step by step instructions and little by little, it appears we are making progress. It 'only' took a few hours with breaks (from the heat and the nerves and the need to pee)... and then we wait. We used 6020 Time Sert adhesive and wait the recommended one hour. Then we re-inserted the plug and tipped the bike back upright. We used some new oil that he had laying around and flushed out the crankcase to catch any aluminum shavings we might have missed when doing the procedure. We used grease on the end of the drilling tools to catch most of it, but wanted to be sure. Slosh the oil around by moving the bike side to side to side 100+ times. Then let it sit for a bit before draining it all out. Minute evidence of aluminum was found - like hardly any. Time to put in the real oil and cross our fingers. The oil in, the filter changed, I fire up the bike and am so anxious I can hardly stand it. Let it run for a bit, then sat back and waited. And watched the cardboard under the bike for any signs of leakage. Nothing!!!! Kept waiting and watching... still nothing, YAY!!! I think it worked!!!! Let it sit for a few more hours, started it up again, and still good!!!! Then off we went for ride - I took the cardboard with me out of sheer 'just to be sure'... and all day, no drips or leakage!!!! I am beyond happy!!!! My dad truly saved the day(s)!!! Off to the roadways we go!!