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Sunday, October 23, 2011

Winterize.... again

With 9111 Kms on the clock my VFR1200 was given its 4th oil and filter change. Though the fall weather here has been good, there's a possibility the bike won't be ridden again until spring 2012 and I like to keep it parked with clean oil in it.

With the last service at 4400Kms this is the furthest it has gone on a single oil change. The oil came out quite dirty, but still with a slight greenish tinge from Motul 300v full synthetic. The recommended service interval is 7500 miles but I'll probably never go that far without a change. It's worth noting that this engine has used not a drop of oil since new, and this summer saw some hard use, with a 3600Km mountain tour, a trip to the dragstrip and 2 trackdays.

A new filter went on and 3.2L of 5w40 Motul 300v double ester replaced the dirty 10w40 300v that was drained out. I didn't deliberately switch to 5 weight, it's just what the dealership happened to have.

While I was at it, I changed the final drive oil again with another 200mL or so of Motul full synthetic hypoid oil. I'm well short of needing a final drive service but its an easy task to perform and only took a few minutes. The oil came out clean but with strings of black slime marbled throughout. I added some StaBil to the fuel, put the bike on stands and hooked up a battery tender.

There's no such thing as too much maintenance.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

The Last Track Day

I spent Sunday afternoon at Race City turning laps at the last ever scheduled event at Race City Motorsports Park. Next year, the facility will be demolished to make room for an expansion of the neighbouring landfill. 

I normally participate as an instructor, but this time I decided to ride as a "customer". I paid my fees and was free to ride in all of the groups, at my own pace, as much as I wanted.  The VFR handled beautifully.... predictable, stable, fast, and with surprising grip from the Pirelli Angel sport touring tires. Being ever more confident with the bike, I pushed it quite a bit harder than the last track day, grinding out my pegs regularly and spinning the tire coming out of 2nd gear turns. The ABS was a bit frustrating, forcing me to brake way early for turn 1. (or otherwise risk blowing past the turn-in point when it kicked in) I passed a few intermediate riders on litre bikes and supersports who were surprised at how fast the big girl could be hustled, and admittedly, I also got in the way of a few racers who were probably wondering what the hell I was doing riding in the fast group. :)
I'm sad that Race City will be gone, but grateful for all the memories and friends I've made there. 

A debt of gratitude is owed to my friend Brad Gavey who introduced me (and hundreds of others) to the sport. Brad kept his school and track days going through thick and thin, sometimes at great personal expense, out of pure burning passion for the sport he loves.Thanks buddy.