Monday 6th April – Salt Lake City
Well, Happy Birthday to me :)
On that note, I managed to sleep in again :) I still cannot connect my laptop to Kens LAN, and his son Fenton who is also computer literate tried yesterday evening as well with no luck, it is strange? Normally I can just plug in a network cable and Vista will do all the work and say connected etc, but not here. The last time I used the LAN network connection was at Graham’s house in Oz, since then I have been using wireless. I downloaded a 2G TomTom map at Grahams, so it all worked fine then. We were both unsure what could be the issue, so Fenton invited me over this afternoon to plug the lappy into his LAN and just see if it was a failed card or something.
Anyway, back to work, I found out that I had lost a nylock nut from the PIAA light mount, they were not installed, I had just finger tightened them onto the bolts, and one vibrated loose on the ride yesterday, bummer. Ken said there was a hardware shop on the way to Fentons, so that is good.
I managed to get the difficult bits done, like the centerstand :) Remember me saying I had lost the bolts, well, I have found them :) Hiding under some foam in the pannier, they were, which was good as it saved a lot of hassle, I knew I had packed them :) So, that got done, then the lowering links, I managed to do this by myself, although Ken helped ‘crack’ the nuts which were factory tightened. This is how I got the old ones off, I used a rake handle to take the wheels weight, it worked well.
Then I used a trolley jack and a lump of wood to jack up the wheel so I could get the new ones lined up, of course I had the front brake strapped on :)
After removing the side stand and grinding the ‘stop’ area so I could regain the lean, I installed the crash bars. That was fun, I did the left side no worries, but the right side seemed to have moved a bit, so none of the 4 bolt holes lined up, but I fixed it with a big screw driver in between the motor mount and motor and just gave it a few taps with the whackometer. :)
You can also see a couple of cables hanging over the left grip, these are the controls for my heated grips and chain oiler, and I had been undecided for a few days whether to drill holes in the dash or not. In the end I did, when I sell the bike, I can install some switches there and it is a handy place for them to be, out of the way, but an easy lean forward to adjust on the fly.
Well, I have seen them in the movies and on TV, now in real life, the old yellow school bus :) Well, maybe not that old, quite new in fact.
I had nearly completed everything to do with the chassis, except the belly pan, I wanted to see if I needed to do an oil change before or not. So, now was the time to go to the hardware store. I had also been chasing a top box, particularly an Rjays brand as this would fit the plate. I did some phoning around earlier, but I may have to buy an OEM, whatever I can get to fit, but not a Givi as I left that adaptor plate at home.
I had also found out the closest bank for Wells Fargo, I needed to get some cash, I also needed to work out this Travelex Cash Passport I had bought. So, on the road with an address in my TomTom and it took me to a large shopping centre where I successfully withdrew some money from my Travelex card, yay!
Apparently I need to select credit card to make it work. It is also expensive, it cost $3US for the transaction, I better not get charged back home as well, this card is already in US dollars, so I have already paid for the exchange rate once. Anyway, it worked, now I need to learn how to recharge it :) I will also have to use this for larger amounts than the 100 dollars I got today, as the transaction fee is the same.
Next stop was the hardware shop, that was easy to find and I managed to find the correct nylock nut 8mm to suit the PIAA mounting bolts, great. I had a great bloke to help me called Fernando, and we managed to get the other bits I needed, this is stuff to make up a couple more torpedo tubes, or storage tubes, and hopefully tomorrow I can get them mounted and hung correctly. If you look closely you can just see the tubes on the back rack held in place by my Andy Strapz!
After dropping all the gear off, I headed off with my Laptop to Fentons place. I got there eventually after a losing argument with the GPS, more on American navigation and street systems at another time :) As soon as I plugged in the network cable it found a network and connected, so for the first time in a week I had internet on my own computer. This situation will no doubt arise again, so I need to work out exactly what I need to use at most times and carry it on the flash drive in the future.
I spent a short time here just catching up with banking, emails etc before heading back to Kens, they were busy elsewhere, so I tried again with the laptop on their network, but no go. At least I knew it was not my network card at fault, but just a conflict somewhere with their ISP.
So, I have finished my first week in America :) It has been a good day overall with what I have achieved with the bike, still some to do of course. I have safely managed to ride around town without getting anyone to beep at me :) I still don’t know where I am , but that is not a problem as I can “Successfully Navigate In An Urban Environment” the people back home in the SES will understand that bit :) I nearly had my money situation sorted out, but I ran into the Aussie netbank security wall, so I have some more hoops to jump through before I can access funds! The bike is getting together which is the main thing, with that I can go riding :) Of course no access to funds means no go juice for me or the bike, catch 22! :o
Ken and Bev have been absolute great hosts, it has made the whole process so much easier, without a workshop area and a bed to sleep in I think I would have gone nuts trying to build the bike the way I want it.
Anyway, enough of my ramblings for today, let’s see what tomorrow brings :)