The Coyote's Ramblings - 2004C
July - August
Copyright 2000-2004 The Coyote's Den
Five days later and I still haven't fixed that danged turn signal/running light problem.  I do have effective turn signals for safety's sake and, besides, Muff will be back from the Great North before long and he LIVES wiring!  I'm taking a heat break from tearing the scooter down, taking the sheetmetal and fairing off.  By the time I ride her again, I'll have the rebuilt engine in; tomorrow is the day to take her to Dink for the swap!!!
There's a bunch of sanding and painting to do...and it just doesn't seem to want to stop raining.  Yesterday was the only day this past weekend that I didn't get caught by it and it was just too danged hot!  It was good seeing a bunch of you out in Milton and downtown but it looks like about a week before I see you on the road again.  'Til then, take care and ride safe.
Okay, nine days without my scoot and I'm getting antsy!  All the painting is done and, since I found out today that it MIGHT be done by this weekend (but not before), I'm building a new light bar.  I found some lights I like better than the ones I got from Big Lots way back when, and I think they'll throw more light.  Also, I was never quite satisfied with my mounting system, so this should be neater and easier to mount and dismount.
Sorry I missed y'all at Milton last week, but I had a good time at Five Flags.  We ran into Doctor and Mrs. Pepper and enjoyed their company as well as the races.  We got to see some wrecking and pit fights which were a precursor to Sunday's NASCAR show, too.  It doesn't look very good for my making Ava's this Friday, but htere's no races at Five Flags, so I might just drive out.
Tomorrow, I've got a drive to Biloxi, to the VA Medical Center, for some preliminary work, so I sure hope it doesn't rain.  My procedure is on the 27th, but Muff is going to drive me over for that, since they're gonna put me under and won't let me drive.  Personally, I think it's a big pain in the ass!
Y'all take care and be safe.  There's been too many motorcycles down, lately, and I don't want you to be one of them.
Two weeks...TWO flippin' weeks!!!  First thing Thurday morning, before I had to leave for Biloxi, I got a bad call from Dink.  He got the rebuilt engine in and fired 'er up...and she smoked worse than I do. Long story but the gist is we're gonna graft the old top end on the new bottom, but it's another week of waiting (at least).
The up side of this is that I wasn't happy with some of my paint work, so now I have the time to strip it down and do it again.  I think the new light bar is going to work well, too...IF I ever get it all back together again!  Okay, that's out of my system. 
Question...does anyone know anything about a regular Friday night get-together at the McDonald's at Mobile Highway and Saufley Field Road?  The last couple of Friday's, I've seen scoots and rods out there, but was always on my way somewhere and didn't stop.  Is this something that should be added to the regular weekly stuff?  Howsabout someone letting me know.  Ciao for now.
Alright already!  I'm back, so stop complaining.  I got the bike back Saturday after my last entry, and got it back together to ride on Sunday.  It was a little frustrating keeping it under 3500 RPM for the break-in period, but I did manage it...mostly.  Dink recommended 200 miles and my book called for 500, so I split the difference at 350.  The trouble was, it has been so hot before this weekend, that I only took her out in the cool(er) evenings.  I had also forgotten to tell Dink about the stripped threads on the oil pan, so he didn't swap pans, as I had planned on originally, so I was a little uneasy about that.  Finally, oil change time came, so I took that opportunity to change the oil pan too.
Finally, this last Friday, I was ready to ride to Milton, with a decent highway speed.  I was going to take the scenic route, out Barrancas to Bayfront and then up Scenic Highway to the fill and on to Milton.  As I was climbing the Bayou Chico Bridge...with a bit of throttle...I could see by the setting sun behind me, a thick cloud of smoke in my mirror!  Panicked, I turned around and headed for the house.  First thing Saturday morning, I was at Dink's.  He explained that sometimes it took a little while for all the oil rings to seat and to just run it tight through the gears a few times and that might help set them.
Okay, I did that Saturday, quite a bit, but it never did stop the smoking.  This morning, I took her out again and was on my way to Navarre when she really started missing on me.  I managed to limp home in time to catch the race from Watkin's Glen, and then went out to check my plugs.  Unfortunately, I can't access the two inner plugs without removing the tank, which means removing the seat, removing the bags, etc.  I know now that it's the #2 cylindar with the problem!  The other three looked great (heck they only have 500 miles on them), but that one was really oil-fouled.  All put back together again, I took a nice sunset ride and she seems good...if still a little smoky.  I guess I'll keep working on it.  Ugh, dentist appoinment in the morning.  Later!
Yes, I'm riding; yes, it's still smoking; and yes, three fillings.  Unfortunately, I can't ride more than about 150 miles without that plug fouling, so we're gonna bite the bullet.  Friday, I ordered the overbore kit and when Dink fnishes with it, my 750 is going to be an 825.  The other option would be to bump her all the way to 900, with re-sleeving, except for a couple of little things: a new cam, new carburation and an oil cooler.  I've been looking for the oil cooler for quite a while, anyway, and I just haven't found one to work on this block.  Oh well, the 750 has been plenty for me all these years, so 825 is just a bonus.
My riding has all been short-range lately (I don't really want to go any further than I can limp back on 3 cylindars) but I've still managed to get damp a few times.  Actually, with this heat it's felt pretty good.  Nothing else seem to be happening except the wait...and another break-in<sob>.  If anything else comes up, I might actually write about it.  Later.
This is my fourth day without riding, and I haven't gone nuts...yet!  I AM getting tired of sanding, though, from the look outside, I don't think I'm doing much painting today.  It's coming along, but I won't be riding until next week, sometime.  While you guys will be at the Milton Sonic tomorrow evening, I'll be at Five Flags Speedway.  Take care and seeya...later.
..and no, nothing has come up.  I'm still waiting for the overbore kit to come in...which should be this week.  In the meantime, I have been getting out and about, and seeing some of you in the process.  The weeknight bike nights seem to be kinda weak-nights, but I guess that's just the heat of summer keeping folks in their air conditioning.  Although it wasn't a listed bike night, there was a bunch of folks at D&R last Friday.  Is that something I've been missing?
Saturday was the Memorial Ride for JR, and there was a good turn out for that, as well as the party at Pat's Pond that evening.  I'd done a pretty good job of dodging raindrops this past week, but my luck ran out on Sunday, on the way over to the Dock for the Steel Pony Party...such as it was.  So much for prizes and specials.  Sorry folks, I just work with the info they give me.
Lessee, coming up... Dragon's Party at Pat's Pond this weekend, blood drive at Channel 3 on Mobile Highway on Saturday (you know that's one of my pet projects) and a CMA service over in Foley on Sunday.  Should be enough to keep everyone riding somewhere this weekend...if it doesn't rain to much.  Be safe!
The kit is in...the same day that Dink left for the Triumph plant in England.  I was going to tear the scoot down this week and take it in, but I think I'm going to wait until after Hurricane Ivan has done his thing.  There's a good chance we'll be without power for some time, so I don't know when this will get updated again.  It was five days when Opal came through.  Thoughts and prayers are appreciated.
Dark and only breezy so far...and I guess I'm as ready as I'm going to be.  I can still remember my first hurricane as a small kid living in Brownsville...peering between the boards as the wind slowly uprooted a tree in my front yard.  It just kept leaning, leaning from the force of the wind as the tangled roots emerged from muck of our front yard.  This was sometime in the 50's and we didn't have air conditioning back then, so I don't really recall the hardships afterward.  Fifty-some odd years later, I'm tired, and I'm apprehensive.  Then, I was the protected one, with no responsibility, but now, I'm the caretaker for my 85 year-old Mother and, what's scarey is, she trusts me to keep her safe.
I stepped outside again and the wind is rising, small limbs dropping on the roof.  I heard a report that the police caught someone trying to loot a home near Perdido that had been evacuated yesterday.  It makes me wonder how safe my generator is, out on the carport.  I guess that's only one more thing for Smitty and I to watch out for.  Dammit...I wish this were over!
I don't know when I'm going to finally be able to upload this since there's no phone service...and probably won't be for quite a while.  Interestingly enough, I'm keying this by candle llight.  I have a generator and normally, one shouldn't connect a computer, but I run a UPS, which is a line conditioner, so I'm safe from fluctuations and surges.
Wednesday night was the most terrifying of my life.  We lost power about 6PM, so all we had were the flashlights and candle.  It was blowing and raining much too much to go crank up the generator on the carport, so we were just hunkered down waiting it out.  I'm not sure what time I went to be but I think I managed to grab little 15 and 20 minutes bits of sleep.  I can't describe the sound of the wind as it kept increasing and increasing.  I live in a solid brick house on a concrete slab, so I didn't have any creaking, but the sound of stuff hitting the roof and windows never seemed to stop!
I know I slept some because at 1:30AM, the feel of the house shaking woke me up.  I made my way to the carport, which was on the lee side of the wind, and looked out into the maelstrom.  Half of a tree was lying a few feet from my bike barn, which is a sheet-metal lean-to behind my laundry room.  The force of the wind and rain was such that I couldn't even stick my head around the corner to check on the bike.  Now, THAT'S some serious wind!  (Note:  I'm only running the generator for about 45 minutes every couple of hours to preserve the refrigerator since I don't know when we'll get gasoline (or power, or telephone service, or electrical service, OR potable water, et cetera, so I'm gonna close for now)
Okay, make that TWO weeks!  I should have her back this week...sometime.  Everything is painted and waxed, and ready to put back on.  I've even found an oil dip stick with thermometer from out of Canada.  Now, if I can just get myself functioning again...
I'm still a tad under the weather from my procedure on Tuesday, at the VA Medical Center in Biloxi.  Sunday was bad enough, starting a clear liquid diet, but Monday was really tough.  The worst was this stuff I had to drink...4 liters in 2 hours...and it tasted like crap!  Kinda appropriate, considering the consequences.  I got through that part okay, but I sure wasn't leaving the house Monday evening.
Tuesday morning, Muff came by and drove me over to Biloxi.  I've never had a general anesthesia, so I was a bit trepidatious, but I never even knew when I went under!  As soon as the Doc said "okay", a nurse was asking me how I felt.  Duh...  It was real funny going home; I'd be in a conversation with Muff and it would be like 30 miles before I knew it.  The trip home was a LOT shorter than the one over.
Anyway, I've gotten plenty of sleep, but I still don't have any energy.  I sure hope it comes back by the time the scoot is ready.  Anyhow, y'all take care and.....ZZZZZzzzzzzzz.
Well, no ABATE meeting today (I sppose(hmm, my yoooo doesn't seem to be working)), bt I did get the bike ot this afternoon and ride arond the neighborhood.  The troble was all the trees down(dang, I need a new keyboard).  A National Gard engineer nit from Central Florida is ctting or area ot so Gulf Power can get their trucks in(wow, a "u").  Anyhow, I'm hot and sweaty but well-hydrated and MRE'ed.  I know this won't be up-loaded until I get power and comm lines, but I hope everyone is doing okay...Later.
Lights....air conditioning....refrigeration!  Thank you, Georgia Power, thank you.  Thanks, too, to the guy at the Baptist church, for adjusting the clock on your bell system.  There's still a lot of trees lying on the sides of the roads but, for the most part, the roads are passable.  There are still quite a few intersections with traffic lights still down, but traffic seems to have calmed down a bit.  I haven't noticed any lines at gas stations today and I took Mom out grocery shopping today.  At last, a semblance of normalcy!
I'm planning (for the moment, anyway) to try to go to the Nine Mile Sonic tonight and see who shows up.  Heck, I don't even know if they're open yet (or still there, for that matter).  Bike-wise, D&D had no damage and actually may have power by the end of the day.  I stopped by Burke's Machine Shop(who would do the actual cylindar boring) and they may be a little longer getting open, so I'll keep checking before I drop the scoot off for the over-bore.  I have a report that Thunder Beach is alredy under way over in PC, but Pensacola Beach is going to be closed for a long time for any activities.  Okay, I'm really rambling now, so that's it for now.
The telephone's back...but not the I have a small window of opportunity the get this up and out. MRE's are pretty good, particularly the pork riblets...kinda like the old McDonald's sandwich.  Rode around the block(s) last evening before dark.  She started on the first crank and was I happy about that, since it's been almost a week.  Well, gonna shut it down for now and get on-line...I hope!
Last day of Summer...don't I wish!  It's hot, real hot, and still no electricity.  I did manage to find some gas for the generator without a 50-mile drive and a two hour wait.  Just sheer luck at my local conveniience store.  He is running the pumps off a Lincoln Electric welding machine.  MRE's are still holding up well, with enough variety to keep it interesting.  There are only 24 menues so the better damn well have power back on before I start repeating.
Rode around and checked up on some of the folks.  Nothing too serious and only one submerged motorcycle, so this is getting to be like bike wrecks: any one you can walk away from is a good one.  I changed the oil in the generator, since I just happened to remember I hadn't changed it since Hurrican Opal....nine years ago.  Oops!  Gonna keep this short so I can get it uploaded.  Keep the thoughts and prayers coming; we can still use them.  Adios.
Funny, the first day of Autumn feels just like the last day of Summer.  Still no power but full water pressure.  I took a shower and it smelled like a swimming pool, so I suppose they're adequately chlorinating the stuff although we're still under the boil order.  Got a call from Sean that they now have power AND cable, so I took Mom over there for the afternoon.  She wants to come back here to sleep in her own bed, though.  Funny, I feel the same way, even if it is sweaty until early morning.
Since the power camo on over on Lillian Highway, the Baptist church's  bells have been ringing at 5AM, waking me up, instead of their scheduled 9AM.  I finall walked over there after the THIRD time of being awakened in the dark and found out the only guy who knows how to work the system left town and isn't back yet.  The nice guy I talked to said he's really try to find someone to do something about it since it's waking the relief workers staying at the church, too.  Enough for now so I can get on-line while the generator's still running.
I guess it's finally the letdown to normalcy, but I'm incredibly exhausted!  Granted, there's still a lot of clean up of rather large pieces of wood out in the yard but, for the most part, the "have-to" stuff is done.  My back is totally shot but I still have to strip the bike before taking it to Dink on Tuesday.  Now, if I just had cable back.
By the way, I DID make it up to Nine Mile on Friday...but I was it!  Considering the traffic, I don't blame anyone for not coming, even if they did have the time and energy.  Ciao for now.
Still tired, but making progress...  Dink got the scoot Tuesday morning and the lights are on at Burke's, so it's just sit and wait time.  I was re-doing the dings in the tank today and realized...all over again...that I'm not a paint and body man.  My old Opal-era chain saw seems to have given up the ghost so I spent the afternoon tracking down another electric chain saw.  I went to 2 WalMarts, 2 Lowe's, Home Depot, and finally wound up finding a Craftsman at Sears.  Best of all, they were on sale, $20 off.  Cool!
In my running around town, I saw Cox cable trucks everywhere...except in my neighborhood.  I'm so tired of a fuzzy channel 3 and 23...and not much else.  At least the fair opens in 3 weeks.  I need a real corn dog.