TAT 5 APRIL 2017

TAT 404 March P day fin

404 ready – Paddy’s day 2017

TIME spent is not always time wasted !

The best laid plans of having everything ready months in advance is looking a little weak this month.

Simons DRZ is in Knoxville ( our start point) undergoing some prep work , tanks , seat as advised . With 11500 miles on the clock it was advisable to fit a cam chain and whilst at it take off the kettle and have a peek inside . Just as well as it transpires someone for some reason had fitted a steel sleeve and the piston was very well worn . Quite why anyone would fit a sleeve is a question but there it was according to the US of A mechanic . It needed at least a piston and the mechanic recommended fitting a 435 CC kit . Simon has decided to go with that . DRZ motors are known to be ultra reliable and the bike looks very clean and tidy and whilst it may have run on without any issue in the end it is better to get sorted . The sleeve remains a ? Why.

Mick is a fisherman and we all live in that great garden of Ireland WICKLOW but Mick is a real Wicklow man living in the booneys where there is little modern communications …. No e-mail and virtually no phone signal or so we are told !  Every now and then he makes contact and lets us know how he is getting on . The bike has always been ready , now on the second attempt he received the bike EPA passport . That is needed . Mick has been out training on the trials bike ( as if he needs to) and we hope we do not encounter the type of terrain we need for that . Trouble if we do .

“ you simply fill the extra space( time) “ was how I looked at it  last time at the extra 8 weeks gained by air freight . It is obviously a physiological thing if you have time use it .

Paddy’s weekend was great , it pissed down rain so it was spent in the shed ….. I rebuilt all the 404 chassis , fitted the fuel lines , tanks and mounted all the gear . Fired her up , no problem just a puff or two of smoke , probably used some mixed fuel . Out and about for a spin and all good , the motor running fine , fuelling fine and the gear packed as planned was almost unnoticeable . Happy out.


2 Days Later!

Two nights later I started it  again …. Another puff of smoke , it is quite normal and nothing to worry about but now in my head I was thinking back. Should I have replaced the piston , valve stem seals? The clear answer it was not necessary but now I had 8 weeks extra so out it all had to come . James ordered up a complete kit ( rod , mains , w. pump etc) and the DRZ sits ready to go back in again . Paddy’s weekend all over again . Peace of mind I suppose but all the parts removed were perfect …. For sale … slightly used DRZ parts !

Put back in and run up again. Plan to get to that this week or early next .

The bike insurance has progressed a little to the point where the underwriters asked for the 404 details and manufacturers certificate . I can only assume they are starting the process . Almost there.

TAT 404 front March 17

Bear guards !

It was a relief that when loaded that all the gear fitted as planned and riding the bike felt not  a lot different to normal. I went my own way on this not using saddle bags or side gear bags but mounting “ bag” brackets directly to the rear tanks . Rubber mounted so they will not bend if and when I crash . It allows the bagged goods to be very securely fitted to the bike with the heavy weight down low . May look a little goofy when empty but it seems to work fine.

TAT 404 Tank mounts

Tank mounts.

TAT 404 Bag mount to tank

Bag Mounts.

TAT 404 April Motor out

404 Stripped again.

The weeks are marching in at a speed . All of us will need to have everything completed by the month end and start on learning to navigate. Simon said he will follow , I am not the best navigator and am defo not tech savy, Mick will be the best . Should be interesting to follow us two . Our good mate Brian MC Girr in Fermanagh is as good a navigator as there is one and we will spend  a day or two with him. Roll on.


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