Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Concours First then Chewin' the Fat!

Well the Concours hit the mileage, 600, right on cue. Just as I arrived this morning, following a chilly ride, at Greenwood Performance Cycle Inc, the odometer rolled onto exactly 600 miles, oil change timed to perfection!!! Troy greeted me, took the bike and noticed the mileage - "How the hell did you do that?". "If I told you I would have to kill you, no, absolutely no idea" as I walked towards the showroom "can you add a little air in the tires too - there both at 39 psi - should be 42!" Oh I love those little gizmos!

Bike safely in the hands of their mechanics I strolled into the showroom to look at the bikes. Sharon came over to say hello, asked how things were going and I got introduced to one of the co-owners Richard. We chatted about the Conc', how it was running and then discussed some comparisons with his FJR1300. Richard actually test rode the Conc' prior to my collection of it the other weekend. He liked it a lot and commented that even though he had only ridden it 5 miles he generally felt that it was , all things considered, a better bike than the FJR. He said that it was very stable, extremely smooth and had zero torque reaction from the shaft, all of which I agreed with. Who says taking a test ride before you buy isn't worth it? Me, cause I never do but riding and buying motorcycles is an emotional thing and if you make your decisions led from the head instead of the heart then maybe it's time to find another interest! That's why the Japanese make so many models, variations and add new models all the time because we are all after different things. The demand is there so to be successful you need to make sure you can identify and supply the demand and once you have met and satisfied it you put something else out there that creates another demand and 'antiquates' what you've just bought. The 'vicious' circle of 'want' increases - the Japanese have mastered this to an art. All the magazines add fuel to the fire with their generally fickle tests and 'this years model is better than last years because the turn signal flashes a microsecond quicker'. Who the hell cares but guess what a lot do, it's called fashion and 'keeping up with the Jones' (Sorry to the mags as generally they do a good job and of course have to satisfy their market also - 'The Ficklers")

Richard then proceeded to tell me a little about their background. How things had improved with managing the business, etc. when they moved to their current premises where they had the space necessary to appropriately show their products with a large, very clean and warm workshop area that enabled his mechanics to do the work they are trained and love to do in a conducive environment. We spoke some more on labor relations, etc. and both agreed that you can have a great product but if you don't provide the back up and the follow on support, which is predicated on having the right people with the right attitude in the right surroundings, you are doomed to fail. Nothing Peter Drucker would leave his grave for here but nice to know Richard knows what is needed - respect Sir and to your staff.

We made our salutations and parted. I proceeded to look at the bikes, a non ABS Conc' was nice, a nice looking Hayabusa in a bronzy orange color but what took my eye was a new 2006 'BRIGHT' yellow GSXR1000. I grabbed a coffee and looked over the Gixxer a little more closely. What a really nice looking and petite machine - it looked like you could just pick it up, put it in your pocket and walk out with it - amazing how your perspective changes when you've just ridden an almost 700 lb sports tourer for 80 miles!! I looked at the price, nice, good deal, "stop it" I said to myself, not out loud of course, I look stupid enough without talking to myself and reinforcing that fact! I walked away drinking my coffee and stopped thinking such thoughts. What did I say earlier about the heart leading the head, this time the head won - only just though?

Then there it was a KTM Supermoto, slicks, front and rear, wow wee that's the baby for me!!! Sharon came over just in time to save me. We started discussing accents and how important it was for them to be maintained along with local dialects. I reflected on the BBC back in the old days and the horrendous local news programs that used to be broadcast with newscasters who spoke like they had the proverbial 'plum in their mouth' and were educated at Oxbridge. Thank goodness sense eventually prevailed in the early 70's and local news began to be reported by local people. You got 'Eee by gum lad there's trouble t'mill' and 'D'ya ken that canny wee hoose down the road Jimmy' wonderful stuff. If you get the chance check out a BBC show from the late 90's called 'Chewin the Fat' you'll love it - any Brits reading this will know exactly which sketches from that show I am referring to - you'll love the banter!

So back to the bikes. Before I knew it Sharon said "oh look your bike is ready" Wow if felt like I had only just got there. I complained that they hadn't given me enough time to look around the showroom, maybe a good thing cause that KTM was on sale too.

Keith, the service manger and co-owner was with my bike and explained that all was good, the throttle had been adjusted as it was a little tight and that they had slowed the tick over down as it was a little fast. He then proceeded to show me where the idle adjustment was so that as it 'broke in' I could reduce the idle as the engine became freer. Music to my ears, etc. etc - at last a dealer who a) Does things without being asked, b) Provides a genuinely interested attitude and guidance to help and c) Knows what the hell he is talking about - it was like being back at 'Hailwood and Gould's' shop in Birmingham, England in the early 80's. (By the way yes the great 'Mike the Bike, and the not so great Rob Gould - I still have the Yamaha scarf Mike Hailwood sold me personally 3 weeks before he and his young daughter got killed by a jerk in a lorry, sorry truck, returning from a local fish and chip shop one evening). I offered my appreciation to Keith, paid my dues, very reasonable by the way and said 'sithee in 2 weeks for the 3,000 service' they laughed but we'll see those grins disappear when I arrive there sooner than they may think.

So I jumped on board, fired her up and rode back to work like a Cheshire Cat with not a care in the World occasionally taking her up to the 6,000 rpm mark in all gears - note occasionally officer. What you need 10,500 revs on this thing for will be a thing I shall only ever find out on a race track or if I take it to the Isle of Man or Germany, honestly officer.

Well this will do for todays post. Another will follow shortly after I break the first 1,000 miles hopefully this coming Saturday - I will have some nice pictures to include also.

1 comment:

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