Category Archives: Rants, Raves, & Stories

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Safety Nazis & White Knights

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Safety Nazis & White Knights

There’s a group of people out there on the internet who seem bent bound & determined to ruin it for the rest of us, and they seem to be especially vocal in motorcycle pages, forums, and groups. You know who I’m talking about all those Safety Nazis & White Knights that are ever so eager to either protect you from yourself or to protect others from you.

Let me vent a little here, nothing drives me crazier than for someone to post a video or a ride report and say something like, “ I was cruising along on I-20 into Alabama at about 80 plus,” or the video camera catches a glimpse of a speedometer that’s a little north of the posted speed limit. Not because I mind a competent adult driver exceeding an often arbitrary speed limit, but because I know that the next post or two will be some jerk who will write a two page sermon on the evils of speeding and how he or she always drives 1 mph under the speed limit because they are saints, while the rest of us are horrible evil criminals who want chaos to reign, as we meet our end in a fiery blaze of glory leaving our children as orphans and taking as many innocent people as we can straight to hell with us. We do realize that excessive speed on the roads is dangerous but in most places you are much safer to move with the flow of the speeding traffic than to become a rolling roadblock. Quite frankly most of the speed limits in America are lower than they need to be especially on interstates and a lot of highways out in the boondocks, not for any real safety reason but to enhance revenue collection. I could go on and on and yes I will admit there are places where restrictive speed limits are reasonable, and that there is such a thing as driving way too fast. What exactly defines driving way too fast has more to do with road conditions, traffic, condition of the equipment and the skill of the operator, not necessarily some numbers nailed to a post beside the road.

I wear my helmet almost every time I sit down on a motorcycle now. At one time I would not have been caught dead on a motorcycle with a helmet but now when it’s time to mix it up in crazy commuter traffic or hit the road for a long haul not only is a full face helmet on my head, but I’m wearing a full riding suit with boots and gloves even in the heat of summer. At high speeds for long distances it’s actually far more comfortable. Even so I support the right of free adults to make that decision for themselves, and I really don’t care if you agree with me or not. As I said earlier I wear it most of the time, but on the odd Sunday morning my wife and I will take a long slow ride down the rural 2 lane roads that surround our country home without brain buckets. Sometimes we can go 20-30 miles at the time without seeing another vehicle. Yes I know it’s more dangerous than riding with a lid on, with the possibility of wildlife collisions, tire blowouts etc. but it reminds us of what it was like to be young and care free. Don’t preach at me, the kids are all grown, we have excellent health and accident coverage that we pay for and yes life insurance too as do the vast majority of riders that I know. Not to mention my equipment is immaculately maintained and I WORK at keeping my skills up and even improving them. These quiet country cruises we share together actually have very little risk and we minimize it well. Can’t deal with it? That’s your problem not mine.

Sometimes I can be a bit of a Safety Nazi & White Knight myself, on the subject of distracted or drunk driving but I try not to get too aggravating about it except that I’ll say these two things are almost guaranteed killers, usually of some innocent bystander. If you want to take the risk of offing yourself I’m actually cool with that, try to have fun in the process, but don’t take me or any other innocent people with you.  Even with the way I feel about these two things the World Wide Web has introduced me to folks who get so totally unhinged and paranoid about distracted driving that it’s enough to drive me to drink. For example there is one person who inhabits a certain Facebook group and watches for some someone to make a post about GPS, phone, or camera mounts so that he can preach the same stupid sermon over and over. For example when I posted a picture of the Ram mounts installed on the handlebar of one of my scoots, this fool was the second person to see it and he went ballistic on me.

Ram Mounts On Honda Helix
Ram Mounts are the best.

This is a double ball mount that hold my dash camera off to one side for a good view of the road, (I use the Midland XTC btw) and the other side holds my phone or GPS unit at a height where I can read my map and follow the navigation arrows without taking my eyes off of the road. No phone calls or texting while moving, just navigation. I actually regard texting and talking while driving as a hazard but using navigation apps or gear are not as long as you are not programming your route while on the move. In fact it may even make a trip in unfamiliar territory safer because you do not have to scan every single street sign to find out where your next turn is. I don’t miss the paper map in top of the tank bag one bit, the eye level GPS screen is much better and much safer.

Now let’s move on to another despicable creature that tends to inhabit the various for sale groups and websites on the internet, the White Knights protectors of the innocent consumer. Any time someone posts a price for any item that they feel is even a dollar too high the White Knights swoop in like a pack of vultures to fresh carrion to savage the seller and tell the whole world what a crook he is and try to besmirch his or her online reputation by telling everyone who will listen what a crook the seller is. In the last year a couple of the assholes have come after me for ads that I’ve posted to the point that I will not use any Facebook sale pages to sell any motorcycle or parts. Unfortunately the keyboard sociopaths dwelling in their parent’s basements or the unscrupulous online seller trying to shut down his competition by making them look bad will hammer the hell out of you. Here are 2 real stories that happened to me.

Example number one the Sportster; I bought a 65-70% complete Evo Sportster basket case. The complete engine was all there including the carb, along with frame, triple tree, miscellaneous, except for the wheels one fork leg, and sheet metal. At the time of purchase I took a bill of sale from the owner stating that the bike was an 883. So when I got home I took some pictures and posted it online for $1200 bucks. Yes that was high but I fully expected to be negotiating that price, nobody in their right mind would pay asking price for a project bike or parts pile. Too bad that time I posted it, a bunch of those pesky assholes pounced, posting that I was a rip off artist and a bunch of other crap so I got tired of their shit and pulled the ad. Over the next few days I got the paperwork straightened out and the bike turned out to be a 2002 XL1200, and I sold it to a coworker for a most excellent price far below $1200. It took him about 2 months to put it back together and now he rides it to work 2 or 3 times a week. So next time you see one of these “White Knights” giving an online seller hell, jump on his ass tell them if they want to buy, make an offer otherwise SHUT THE FUCK UP. Somebody out there missed a sweet deal on a 1200 Sportster from me because of these assholes.

Another time I bought an engine side cover for a Honda CT70 from an online seller but then traded the project before using it. My purchase price was 65 dollars plus shipping. The part is still in the original packaging, so I figured no problem right? Wrong! Some asshole who is an online parts dealer specializing in Honda Mini Trails, used his personal FB account to state that I was asking way too much and then he provided a link back to his aftermarket dealership website showing the same part for $50 and basically insinuating that I was trying to rip people off. Screw assholes like that, I paid $65 for it (from a real Honda dealer) and was simply trying to get my money back, and not a penny more. BTW I still have the left engine side cover that fits on a Honda CT70 and yes I will sell it to you for $50 plus shipping. It’s not correct for the early models but it will work if you are just fixing a rider. Next time one of these so called “White Knights” gets online and tries to slander me I think I’ll sic a lawyer on them even if it costs me 20 grand to do it just to teach them a lesson.

It would be possible to go on and on but even if I do expect to recoup my investment in motorcycles and parts every once in a while but this is mainly about having fun doing some things that I love to do. Since I don’t make my living doing this anymore I don’t have to put up with assholes.

Until next time I wish you happy riding, wrenching, & horse trading.

 

 

 

 

 

Motopsyco’s Asylum 2015 year in blogging |

2015 was the best year yet for this little blog, click below to get the full report.

See the fireworks Motopsyco’s Asylum created by blogging on WordPress. Check out their 2015 annual report.

Source: 2015 year in blogging | Motopsyco’s Asylum

Loving the Reader Feedback on This Blog

It’s always great to hear from readers about the various things that I’ve written through the years, for example a little over three years ago I wrote a post underscoring the importance of always using a new cotter pin every time you need one. Just a few weeks ago I received an email from a reader who had a near tragic ending and these next few words will be his.

Comment: I just wanted to share a story about why you should always check those cotter pins.

I had just rebuilt a 200cc bike, and after riding 50 miles, the back wheel came off. I broke my clavicle, went to the ER in an ambulance, destroyed my helmet, broke my crankcase, and scraped up fairings and the frame. The towing & impound were expensive too. In the end, this cost me thousands, and I was out for 6 weeks w/ a hurt shoulder.

All this because I rode the bike without a cotter pin.

I’d torqued up the rear nut to spec, and it only took 50 miles for the nut to back out. I never thought it would happen…but it did.

Now you’ve heard from a man who really knows and yes he still rides motorcycles. He asked me to keep his identity completely private so I will, and thank you very much kind sir for sharing this with us. If the rest of you don’t already have one stop right now & get yourself a cotter pin assortment.

Another post that has generated a lot of comments & feedback was the one entitled Vintage Piston Valve Keihin Carburetor Overhaul. If you look at this post without reading the commentary you’re only getting half of the story. Check out the whole page, I learned as much from my readers as they learned from my meager do it yourself post. Of course this leads into my other series of posts Dirt Bike Carburetor 101.

Those of you with CV carbs don’t fret, I have several dozen detailed close up pictures of 2 different style of CV carburetors that I have worked on recently & will be getting a couple of detailed posts going for you about those.

Some of you may be wondering about the Project wAmmo bobber that I had started on. It’s probably the main reason that I have not posted as steadily this month as I should have because the darn thing needs to be finished. But it’s up on it’s wheels and actually went to it’s first show despite needing a few more details to finish it up. I hope to have it all wrapped up in the next 2 weeks for final pictures in the meantime give a listen to this video.

 

That’s about it for this post if you haven’t already signed up for email notifications please do so using the box below. There’s a lot of great stuff coming up & you don’t want to miss a thing.

Most of all thanks for the reader feedback on this blog.

 

A Busy Time at Motopsyco’s Asylum

Boy life has been running wide open these last few weeks, There have been a few ups and downs but overall more ups than downs, so if you hear me complaining, just ignore me things are actually pretty good around here.
In my professional life (the one that pays the bills since I seem to be unable to sell enough motorcycle parts to survive) the last few weeks, my spare time has been devoted to studying to take the Certified Solidworks Associate exam and this past Saturday I took the test and passed it! So now in addition to my other software skills & certifications I am now also certified for Solidworks 3D CAD as well.

<Solidworks CSWA>

A couple of weeks ago I was trying to change out a 20 year old motorcycle tire when I bent a top of the line name brand made in U.S.A. tire iron. Instead of taking this as a warning I continued try to wrestle with the ancient rubber until I pulled a muscle in my shoulder.

<not supposed to happen>

So I decided at last to try to buy a manual tire changer. My Dad already had the Harbor Freight cheapie car tire changer that he used to change his truck, lawnmower, & small tractor tires and was very happy with it. He finally got himself a new truck and decided last week that being 72 years old, he didn’t want to fix his own tires anymore, and sent the tire changer home with me. I ran up to my local store and grabbed the motorcycle tire attachment. Unfortunately as delivered out of the box with the changes that have been made to the rim clamps on this latest redesign, it was useless. It might be capable of mounting a fresh new tire without modifications, but if you are like me and frequently deal with the treasures, (‘er junk heaps) that you have dragged up from old barns, cow pastures, and junkyards then it won’t be of much use to you either.

<needs serious improvement>

Since the next cheapest manual motorcycle tire changer I could find was 600 bucks it’s time to order a few parts & make a few changes. I will post more about those adventures later after I get all the parts in and put it all together. In the meantime I broke out my reciprocating saw and took care of the next pesky tire.

<I like cutting up>
I like cutting up

We are heading into the heart of motorcycle show & rally season now here in the southeast, The Myrtle Beach Hog Rally, and Atlantic Beach Bikefest are the two biggies along the coast. For the vintage & antique bike lover, this weekend (May 2, 2015) in Panama City, Florida is Bikes on the Beach, in Spencer, North Carolina is the Carolina Classic Motorcycle Show, followed in two weeks by the AMCA Southern National Meet in Denton N.C.

<Carolina Classic Motorcycle Show>

Have fun & I hope to see you on the road!

A Motorcycle Blog Celebration!

Hi there,
My name is Floyd Finch III and I am the owner of this little motorcycle blog. Motorcycling has been one of two passions that I have consistently kept in my life since my childhood.

<The Motopsyco>
I believe every biker should have a little bit of outlaw in them.

At sometime early this morning in the hours just after midnight on March 23rd 2015 this little blog of mine passed the 100,000 all-time page view mark. While this may not seem all that significant compared to some of the mega-bloggers out there it makes me very happy. Hearing from readers in the comment sections or by email is a joy as well and hopefully I have helped a couple of people out.


Since founding this blog in February of 2011, my goal has been to help as many of my fellow motorcycling do it yourselfer home mechanics as I can, and to share the experiences that I have with those not fortunate enough to get out & do even the few shows & events that I take in.


Of course let’s not forget the occasional product reviews as well, I really am honest in my opinions of the products reviewed here whether for good or bad. This will continue to be my policy in the years to come.

fog thief close up
The Fog Thief!

This little motorcycle blog is beginning to exceed anything I dreamed of when I first started it. Although it was started as a hobby a good informative blog does incur some serious expenses so you may notice a few ads around the site. You know you’re going to shop online sooner or later and if you click on an ad here to start it would be a great boost for the blog without costing you a dime that you weren’t going to spend already!

Every year since 2011 the readership of this blog has shown serious solid growth, starting in 2011 I had 1982 page views, 2012 brought in 12,173 views, a huge jump in 2013 pushed readership up to 31,706 for the year, in 2014 there were 43,227 page views on this blog. My goal for this year is to push that number up to over 50,000 for the year with more to come in the years afterward.
So this is my most sincere & hearty thanks to all of the readers, and to those of you who have made products available for review. At this time I would like to encourage everyone who would like to keep up with all that is happening around here and to always have notification of my latest tutorials, tips & reviews please scroll down and sign up for my email list at the very bottom of the page below.
If you have a question that you would like to ask me directly or a product that you would like to have reviewed or if you are interested in advertising on this site please shoot me a line to: motopsyco@motopsyco.com
Thank you,
Floyd Finch III aka Motopsyco

<the man the myth the legend motopsyco>

Happy New Year From The Motopsyco

<motopsyco.com>

2014 was a terrific year with over 43,000 page views in the last 12 months. A big thank you to all of my readers! If you have an appropriate product to advertise or if you sell a motorcycle or motorcycle related product that you wish me to review, send a message using the contact form on my about page. Should you be in the mood to purchase some motorcycle parts or related gear be sure to check out Motopsyco’s Parts & Supplies.

In the meantime I resolve to keep on keeping on!
Peace Y’all

For More About This Blog’s Stats Please Click Here

Happy New Year From The Motopsyco

Start of the Winter Season

It seems as though the start of the winter season here in S.C. has been pretty decent so far. There have been a few chilly days and a fair amount of rain but most of the time it’s been really nice just a little nippy in the morning on most of my riding days but I haven’t had to break out the snowmobile gloves yet. Next week I think I’ll install the winter liner in my riding suit and try to locate those winter gloves just in case it turns really cold and stays dry.

<motopsyco's Joe Rocket jacket>
It’s Dec. 5th and I may have to put the insulated liner in sometime soon.

Yes all of your supposedly sane friends look at you like some kind of idiot or freak when they see you riding around on a motorcycle in the winter time, even here in the deep south. There are occasional times when I wonder about myself for doing it, but it’s just so much fun to ride a motorcycle! Not to mention the maintenance headaches I save from not winterizing or having to do start up service in the spring. If by some chance I were to move to a location where the snow and ice would make it dangerous to ride the bikes would go into storage for the winter but here in SC we have way too many 60 degree days for me to do that.

Life has been going really well around the farm lately, and I picked up a new shop truck to replace my semi-trusty old van. Just plain white regular cab Toyota work truck. Of course since I live by the motto, “stock sucks” the modifications have already begun starting with a tonneau cover and some cargo control updates.

<white Toyota Tacoma Regular cab>

I couldn’t forget the blogs web address!

<skull & crossed wrenches motopsyco>

Deer Hunting season went really well this year & we’re stocked up on meat for the year, so now it’s time to do a bit of cool weather trail riding. The last 2 stroke dirtbike I had was a Kawasaki KD100 that I got when I was 12 or so. Since then it has been all big 4 strokes until this year when I picked up this little blue Suzuki. This was supposed to be a restoration project but it has turned out to be such a hoot to ride just like it is, that I’m reluctant to get started on it. All of these years I was never a fan of so called “ratbikes” but now I am forced to admit there is something very liberating about riding a motorcycle on which the cosmetics just don’t mater! Tree limbs, briars, mud, dirt, dust, or dropped objects in the shop as long as it fires up with the next kick or push of the button who cares. I still love, admire and plan one day to own more beautiful bikes, but everyone should try living with at least one rat for a while.

<motopsyco suzuki ts185>
in the woods Dec. 5th 2014 8:30 a.m.

I have developed the tendency to blast around my neighborhood without any gear, kind of a throwback to the time when I wouldn’t have been caught dead on a motorcycle wearing a helmet. Yes I still get fully geared up for serious riding but I still understand why some people wont. To each his own, live & let live or die, c’est la vie, etc.

Well that’s the start of the winter season for me, it’s just like summer but with colder shorter days and fewer ravenous biting insects. What is it like for you? Do you ride your motorcycle or do you put it away & wait for brighter days?