How to annoy a new customer


Day 1: Customer decides that a new steering bearing is needed for his bike. He  identifies the closest Honda dealer and rides there. He makes an appointment for day 5.

Day 5: Customer arrives at the garage before opening time. He is told that the bearing hasn’t arrived yet and is asked to call in the afternoon. Due to the late opening hour, customer arrives late at work. He calls in the evening and is told that the bearing will not arrive until day 11. Garage blames Honda for this late delivery. Customer makes appointment for day 11.

Day 11: Customer arrives at the garage before opening time. He leaves his bike and gets an old, rotten BMW K75 to get to work. Due to the late opning hour, customer arrives late at work. In the evening, customer picks up the bike and pays 297 Euros. On the way home, customer notices that something was wrong. At home, customer realizes that there is quite some play in the fork that causes a clicking noise when breaking or riding on bumpy roads.

Day 12: Customer arrives at the garage before opening time. He asks the garage to check the play in the fork. Garage proposes to tighten bearing adjustment nut in the afternoon. Due to the late opening hour, customer arrives late at work. Customer comes back during lunch break; garages tightens bearing. Customer makes a remark that now it’s very tight as the handlebar barely moves. Garage tells customer that this might improve after a while.

Day 14: Customer arrives at the garage before opening time. He tells the garage that noise is still hefty, something must be wrong. Maybe a bearing wasn’t installed well and shows bearing play? Garage suggests to tighten bearing adjustment nut. Customer tells garage that this was already done and that it is on the „too tight“ side. Garage is confused and proposes a new appointment for day 19.

Day 19: Customer arrives at the garage before opening time. He leaves his bike and gets an old, rotten Yamaha Fazer to get to work. Due to the late opening hour, customer arrives late at work. He tells the garage that noise is still hefty, something must be wrong. Maybe a bearing wasn’t installed well and shows bearing play? Garage suggests to tighten bearing adjustment nut. Customer tells garage that this was already done and that it is on the „too tight“ side. In the evening, customer passes by the garage and is told that the bike is not ready and that he should call the next day.

Day 20: Customer calls and is told that bike would be ready on day 21.

Day 21: Customer arrives in the evening at the garage and is told by the garage that they spotted the problem: a bushing of the anti-dive system is worn and would make the noise. Customer is sceptical but agrees to exchange the respective part of the anti-dive system.

Day 26: Customer arrives in the evening at the garage and is told that this wasn’t the problem. Customer suggests that maybe a bearing wasn’t installed well and shows bearing play? Garage mumbles something. Will look into that. Customer should call on day 28.

Day 29: Customer calls at garage. Bike is „100% ready“. Customer rides to garage with old Yamaha Fazer. Customer’s bike is ready. Garage explains the problem: the lower bearing showed play (!) and the outer race of the bearing was replaced. Customer pays 22 Euro for anti-dive spare part and rides home. Finally, everything is in order.

Time for customer to look for another garage in the future.

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First impressions


I went with the new tyres on my first trip with the Pan: an IBA Germany Ride to Eat to the Black Forest. Within a wink of an eye I passed Karlsruhe – wow, what a comfy, but quick ride! OK, there are small optimizations to make – an even higher and wider windshield and some risers to bring the handlebars more to the back…I was early so I enjoyed some of the nice roads in the Black Forest – and got acquainted to the new BT023 and I liked it a lot! Gives a good feedback and provides enough grip. I arrived to Triberg well in advance and rode to the world’s largest cuckoo clock. There was another only. After a while, we wondered if we were at the right place – there should be 40 riders and nobody was around…I checked my GPS and realised that we were waiting at the „1st world’s largest cuckoo clock“ and not at the „world’s largest cuckoo clock“. We rushed to the right place – just in time to be in the picture:j81oqpWe visited the interior of the large clock and left individually for our accommodation in nearby Rottweil. We spent the evening chatting in Pizzeria – a nice finish for the event. The next day I headed back north. Rushing on the Autobahn with 180 to 200 km/h is quite comfortable and the top speed of 220 km/h can be considered as sufficient. On my way home, I passed by the INTERMOT in Cologne, the largest motorbike exposition in Germany. It was a quick visit, but very interesting. The booths of the large bike producers, useful gadgets, spare and tuning parts and and and….top news were the new BMW R1200RS, The KTM Adventure 1290 and the Kawasaki H2 motor concept: turbo power is back!

The new BMW R1200RS.

The new BMW R1200RS.

The future Kawasaki H2 turbo motor.

The future Kawasaki H2 turbo motor.

Well, that's definitefely the future....Kawasaki concept bike.

Well, that’s definitely the future….Kawasaki concept bike.

Back home I had received some parcels. Spare parts and something special…When I was talking to Heinz about installing an auxiliary tank, he had a brilliant idea.

A police seat pod to cover a future auxiliary tank

A police seat pod to cover a future auxiliary tank

What about turning the bike into a mono seater and install the tank in the pillion position? The Pan was used in many countries as a police bike and had a special seat cowl that housed the bike’s radio electrics. I had bought such a cowl in the UK and placed it on the bike for a try.

The mounting pate that should carry the aux tank...one day.

The mounting plate that should carry the aux tank…one day.

This will be a tricky project. I’ll have to build a cardboard model first, order a customized aluminium tank, connect it to the main tank and paint the pod. Challenging. But it would give me another 200 km range.

I installed also the original Honda mirror and fairing deflectors that will give me some more wind&weather protection. Nice.

The original Hondamirror deflector

The original Honda mirror deflector

The original Honda fairing deflector installed (left) and not yet installed (right).

The original Honda fairing deflector installed (left) and not yet installed (right)