Tuesday, February 20, 2024


 John Wilder mentioned that he was going to forego blogging this week in order to get a project done.

That made me think about starting and not finishing projects, a failing of mine.  Usually because halfway through I realize that I am either missing something or don't know how to do something and have to figure it out, which figuring will take more time than I have.

So here's yesterday's project as illustration:

Yesterday I decided to finally rebuild the front forks on my Harley.  It's about a three hour job but I had the day off.  I have new chrome fork sliders and covers, plus a new handlebar clamp that holds the bars better.  It's also time to change that fork oil as the spec on the Progressive monoshocks is about 50k.

  • Move the shop trailer over nearer to the garage.
  • Move the bike to the pavement behind the trailer (can't do front end on the lift)
  • Jack up the bike, remove brakes, wheel, fender, cowling, left fork.
  • Disassemble fork and discover that I am out of the correct size fork seal, which I thought I had lots of because I keep them in stock.  Instead I have 25 of the next size down which I won't use up if I work on bikes for another ten years.
  • Spend twenty minutes digging through the trailer to see if I might have a bag of overstock seals somewhere (spoiler alert: I don't)
  • Realize that the new (second hand but still in the box) fork slider covers I bought are clamp on covers, not replacement.  They look terrible so I wouldn't have bought them if I'd realized.
  • So now I have motorcycle with no forks or front wheel suspended on a floor jack in the street and it's going to rain.  Can't get parts because it's Monday and motorcycle shops are generally closed Monday around here, especially in the winter.
  • Put the fork back together without seal or oil and reinstall on bike.  Put the wheel back on.  Take the bike off the lift and run it into the garage.  Pack all the other parts in a bin, put the tools away, clean up the shop trailer, put the shop trailer back in its spot.
  • Now I have to drive three hours round trip to the nearest Harley shop, after working all day, to buy fork slider covers and seals (assuming they have the fork slider covers in stock, they'll definitely have the seals but that doesn't really help as I'd have to take it all back apart again when the covers came in) so that I can get the bike done this weekend as the next weekend I have a memorial ride to attend.
Update: Not only are they not in stock, but they are back ordered til the end of April.  Sigh.  I've ordered aftermarket and the likelihood is that they won't be as good quality.
  • Second sigh. This is why I don't start projects.  There wasn't a damn thing wrong with the bike.


John Wilder said...

If it helps, my project is done :)

Anonymous said...

Nothing is as easy as it is supposed to be. By basement project is dragging into it's second year. Not bad for a project that pros would have knocked out in a long weekend.


heresolong said...

I hired professionals to do my foundation, bathroom, and kitchen. Realized that I didn't want the old house to fall down around me and realized that I wasn't willing to have my house torn apart for the two years it would have taken me. Consequently still working the second job, albeit at reduced hours, to pay for it. Worth every minute. 😁