Category Archives: My Bike

RIP Freewind, Hello NC700XA

Bad news for the Freewind, time of death: March 30 2017. Died at age 19.
Cause of death: Broken gearbox.

I was on my way home, everything was good, till disaster struck. I departed from a traffic light (that was green) and my gearbox rattled in 5th gear.
A few moments later, I lost 5th gear and it sounded like grinding gears. 1-4 still worked.
I stopped to check my chain tension and it was fairly loose, luckely I have some tools with me, and adjusted the chain.

It then continued going home and a few kilometres from home, the first gear began to rattle too and it won’t shift into 2nd gear without putting it in neutral first.

10 metres in my street, the neutral began to rattle like hell. I lost the 1st and 5th gear, and it grinds gears.

Not having time and not wanting to repair the gearbox, I started disassembling the bike for parts. I sold the exhaust to a forum member Solis 560 as a part of a donation to my new bike.
Removal of all the expensive parts I bought for the bike was fairly easy. I recovered the crash bars, pannier rack, lights, handguards, centerstand, and some other pieces that I can use on my new bike or sell.

I then put the Freewind up for sale, but only got fake bidders. Then a man called from a motorcycle salvage yard who wanted to see the bike, I said yes, but didn’t want to let it go under 400€. He kept his word and I kept mine, so I still got 400€ from a bike that is worth 1000€ when it still worked. I think it is a fair price since parts for these bikes are difficult to get, and also expensive.

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Saying farewell to the Freewind that is gone with the wind 😥

The new bike!

Looking for a new bike took 1 day. I searched for motorcycle dealerships and came out at Motorcycle center Caset in Lichtervelde.
They had an enormous assortment of new and second hand bikes. I’m still bound to the A2 35kW regulation, so I went on and looked at the second hand bikes that were 35kW. The only one were the CB500 from 2013 and the NC700 from 2013.

With sub 10k kilometres, the bike was in pristine condition, only 1 scratch on the topcase. I was directly sold, and for that price I couldn’t let it sit. (it was sub 6k). I got a touring windscreen, gel seat, ABS, topcase and carrier, new tires and a new chain. Just like new!

The salesman (and CEO) Johan Caset is also a very friendly, but hard seller. I didn’t mind, because I wanted the bike. After test driving, I was totally sold. It has low mileage, looks new, high MPG and lots of options. The ABS spoke to me the most since I rode 3 years without it.

Now its just waiting till Monday, calling my insurance to fix the papers, and getting the bike on the road to eat up some kilometres!

 

 

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Farkels, and why I have them

Any motorcyclist considered once in their lifetime that they need some upgrades to their bike. Well, I’m one of those motorcyclists.

For beginners:
Farkels (or farkles) are mods that are made to your bike to improve looks or the comfort of your bike. Farkels (or farkles) may not come as standard equipment on your bike.
This equipment has to be functional, hence the name “Farkles” (“-arkles” is from the word “sparkles”). If it’s chromed, it isn’t a farkel or farkle, it’s considered “Bling”.
Some examples are: radar detector, GPS, heated grips, more comfortable seat etc…

When I bought my bike, there were already some farkels (or farkles) present.
These were: A Kappa topcase, and a bigger windscreen.These farkels were pretty handy, because I can’t fit my tools under the seat, and in the winter months, ice cold air blasting in your face isn’t relaxing either.
There’s also a first aid kit in my topcase, but my helmet doesn’t fit in it anymore.

After a few months, when winter came, I bought some handguards, which were a clone of the Acerbis Rally guards. These came in handy because of the wind chill I get.
With my first lowsider on the bike, one of the bar weights broke off, which also broke the mounting hardware of the handguard. Some washers and a longer bolt fixed this.

I also needed a 12 volt outlet, which is always on, so I can charge my phone when the bike is off. I normally carry an air compressor around in the topcase that works on 12v, so I can inflate my tires when necessary.

Since my exhaust muffler was too quiet, and also too heavy, I’ve bought an M.S.R. Classic Inox muffler to replace the heavy, good for nothing, OEM muffler.

Having almost no money to buy a GPS for my bike, I was looking at some waterproof cellphone holders. I got online, and purchased a chinese made cellphone holder for about 5€. Does the job well, but since I have a new phone, I’ve bought a bigger one.

Almost half a year passed and I was getting fed up with the noise the bigger windscreen gave. Looking for some laminar lips, I found one from Givi, which was way too expensive for what it does, but I’ve never tested it.
After searching some more, I found an exact copy of the Givi windscreen spoiler, which was exactly the same quality, just without the “Givi” logo.
I paid about 30€ for it. That’s not a lot of money compared to the more *ahem, expensive Givi one.

I was also afraid that my handlebar would bend when in a crash, so I’ve bought a crossbar.
The crossbar is fully adjustable, and best of all, I can mount my cellphone holder to it.

As of above, I was afraid of crashing and also bending my gear shift lever into my crankcase, which will make the bike a total-loss, because reparation will cost more than the bike has cost me. I’ve put a diy case-saver on the bike, which will protect the case against sharp objects, such as the gear shift lever.

Almost a year had passed, and it was ice cold again. Winter has come.
My old winter gloves weren’t in the best shape anymore, but luckely, I have some new ones from last year. Though the new gloves didn’t stand up at the low temperatures the winter gave. This is the time of the year that heated grips are bought.
I bought some heated grips at my local motorcycle accessory store. The grips only have 2 settings: High and low. High is too hot, and low is too cold, but luckely, I only use it in winter times, or rain. They feel very comfortable.

I then searched for some crashbars and an optional pannier rack.
A crash bar was at the top of my list, but because the one I found was so ugly, I was stalling this till I found a better one. After scrolling at some pictures of other Freewinds on Instagram, I came across a picture from a Polish guy (Kamil.luxmot.pl), and he had a very nice picture of his Freewind with a crashbar that I’ve never seen before.
I asked him what make the crashbar is, and he told me he got it of Moto-adventure-tech.com.pl.
I then looked at the site, and saw the prices were in PLN, converted to EUR, his prices were cheap, so I bought the whole package.
A full crashbar and pannier rack. (Read the review here)

Since I have a pannier rack, why not buy some panniers?
I received a gift card as a compensation of my drenched boots (that were guaranteed waterproof) and bought some nice givi E22 panniers.
And since I have a crashbar, why not order some auxiliary lights?
Off to “the great net of inter”!
I ordered some “Hans Bo” lights. Chinese made, but good quality. You’ll read that in a review later on.
I mounted them a few weeks ago, but one is broken, so I have to wait for a replacement, which is totally FREE!

After all, I don’t want to know how much money I’ve spent on my bike, because it’s almost more than the bike has cost me. But still, farkels (or farkles) are there to improve how you experience your motorcycle.
I’m still not finished farkling up my bike, more reviews can follow.

Here’s a list of all the Farkels (or farkles) I have on my bike:
Some weren’t mentioned.
———————-
Bigger windscreen
Topcase
Heated grips
Crashbars
Pannier rack
Aux lights
12V socket
Givi E22 Panniers
Digital clock
Handguards
Windscreen spoiler
Case saver
MSR Classic Inox Muffler
Handlebar crossbar
Cellphone mount
Smaller indicators
Wheel striping
———————-