Thursday, August 4, 2016

Rocket is calling!

When I returned from the Cannonball, I thought I would be able to choose between three bikes for local rides.  But the Honda was still returning from its trip to Denver and Banff.  And Razzo, usually reliable, wouldn't start.  To make it worse, I had removed the back wheel from Rocket to use as a spare for the Cannonball, and my tools were in transit back home, so I ended up with no bikes to ride.

That took a week.  Since then Rocket was re-tired and the Honda returned.  Razzo still balks after trying a few fixes.  

Now I have a trip to North Carolina planned next weekend.  And Rocket is running better than it has since before it broke in the 2014 Cannonball.

Riding Rocket instead of the Honda presents a couple of concerns.  One, is that it might not make it.  Two is that it has been hesitating when accelerating between ten and forty mph. (I think it is the heavy rollers that I installed a while ago.)  And the third is that if I ride the Honda, I can plan a highway route that will get me there in seven hours instead of nine taking the roads better suited to the old scooter.

I think I am going to give Rocket a shot.  It's longest ride in a while.  And I will be bringing tools and spare parts.

My most recent photo of the old girl.
With Ken on Riverside Avenue in Jacksonville.
On our way to Gainesville.


  1. I wish you luck. Hesitation can be attributed to the evaporative system if you haven't removed it.

    1. Michael, I disconnected the evaporative system recently, and it improved performance and reliability significantly. This issue is not so much hesitation as lack of power at mid speeds. In my mind, it is clearly gearing as the variator appears to be ramping too quickly to the outer limits of the pulley. Low revs are slowing acceleration. I am going to take the variator and clutch off the new engine/transmission and put them on Rocket, along with new lighter rollers. It should solve the problem.

  2. Sounds like a good diagnosis.

    I experienced some hesitation on a couple of occasions. I am pretty sure that the first time was the rev limiter kicking in since I was riding very fast on the expressway.

    The second occasions were during an as-yet unreported ride with Ed Kilner (link to his blog) in rolling steep hills with the throttle often maxed out as I did my best to keep up with his BMW R1200RT.

    So far, around town, it's been fine.

    1. I have had a few moments of real hesitation on Rocket over the past few years. It was finally solved when I disconnected the evap system. Rocket has been perfect since, except when it broke a belt on a ride to the beach. With the work I mentioned above, I don't know why I can't take it on a 1000 mile round trip to North Carolina. It really wants to go.