Grand Prix 250
Main Motorcycle: Custom Merckx Pista
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Texas, USA
Lucky or Unlucky?
One of those days....long story.
Coming home on a beautiful day today, motoring down the freeway in the left lane, passing a truck as I crested an overpass, I noticed flashing lights on the left shoulder on top the next overpass. I hurried to complete the pass & clear the left lane (Texas law), not seeing the OTHER officer waiting with radar at the bottom of the overpass. He pointed for me to pull over, and I stopped in front of the officer I saw with his lights on, as the 3rd vehicle in a speed trap line. Unlucky!
Eventually getting my turn with the ticket-writing officer, he asked me why I was speeding, and I politely explained that I saw him ahead and was clearing the lane (there was a car behind me and a truck beside, so slowing to 20mph below the speed limit didn't feel like a safe option). He said I should have slowed down... I told him he was right, but I didn't think that was the safest move at the time, so I gave it throttle & got around. In the end, he let me go with a warning, for 76mph in a 60! REALLY!?! I am sooo lucky!
Now I had to merge back onto the freeway, from the left shoulder. No problem normally, but the shifter felt a bit "off" as I got up to speed, and so once safely in the flow, I peelled off at the next exit to check it, and found that I couldn't downshift, and the shifter was now sitting ~2" low. Uh oh. Clutch in, coast to safe stop, and I find that the bolt on the front of the shift linkage is broken (the one with the "ball" on the end that connects to the linkage rod. Back to unlucky. I tried shifting with the assistance of my Leatherman pliers,but no luck- and was left wondering if the tranny was stuck in gear? I was now seeing many dollar signs float in front of me, and thinking "unlucky me"!
Well, it was only 15 more miles home, so I went for it in 6th gear, painfully hitting only 4-5 redlights (of the 18 possible). Pulling into the driveway as the sun set, I was again thinking, "I am lucky." This only improved when I found, with larger channellock pliers, that the tranny moved fine (just needed some more leverage!). OK, so lets just fix the broken part...
That is when I realized that much of the broken bolt was still threaded nicely INSIDE the clamp. Oh no, how small of a tap & die will that take, and can I even do it without destroying the body it goes in?!? Well, I just swung very far into the "unlucky" zone, again!
Noticing the broken bolt in my hand was sheared at a very jagged angle, I made one half-hearted attempt at pushing it back into the clamp body, hoping the jagged end would fit the jigsaw puzzle other half and allow me to back the broken bolt out. Imagine my utter amazement WHEN IT MOVED! After ~10 minutes, I was actually able to work the broken piece out, and I couldn't help thinking, I AM THE LUCKIEST MAN ALIVE THIS AFTERNOON!
Have a good day!