Neutral no more

13283_10152914453190922_727371732043068279_nI complained about the bike only starting in neutral even with the clutch lever pulled in before. Not only does this pose a problem when the badly mapped engine stalls in the middle of a turn or at a crossroads, more importantly it makes me look like a fool, balancing the bike while trying to find neutral and desperately pushing the button.  Well, that problem is about to be solved…

Being a ingenius mechanic, or a cheap one depending on how you choose to look at it, means that you always try to find that solution that cost you the least but still works. Sometimes it’s not even about the money, it’s just that feeling of solving a problem by yourself, repairing something instead of just replacing the broken part. This spirit has formed the impressive rat bike community and while I don’t necessarily claim to be a part of that, I do appreciate the wits required to solve complex problems with little or no means at all. They are the real life McGyvers of the motorbike world.

The problems I’ve had starting in gear is nothing really. It’s just that the tip of the sensor is not being pushed in properly when clutching. Simple as that. But to figure that out, I had to remove the clutch lever, improve access to the mechanism and find a way to test it. Still simple, but it is the process that matters. Localizing a problem (cannot start in gear even with clutch engaged), forming a hypothesis (sensor problem), testing that hypothesis (does it work mechanically or is the sensor beyond repair) and suggesting a solution (it’s just the tip that is too short, extend it), that is the real beauty of mechanical work.

In this case, I might just glue something to it. It won’t solve the problem forever, but it was the thought process that was the real gain. That, and the fact that I saved me some 70 dollars!