Back at The Pile I finally settled on something to do and headed out to the garage. It has been some while since I partially dismantled the Ducati* and I was getting concerned that she would get forgotten in my never ending list of projects. This morning I had decided that I would finally strip out and replace the holder for the rev counter and temperature gauge. The Haynes Manual gave this a three spanner difficulty rating which suggested that it should be within the capabilities of a competent home mechanic … Well, that's me fucked then!
After an hour the headlights were dangling, only supported by their power cables, as was the horn and the majority of the instrument cluster nuts had been removed. Only one bolt remained and there was no way I could undo it without a 10" extension bar for my 3/8 Socket Set …
… twenty minutes later I had drunk a cup of coffee and was being chauffeured in to Halfords by TP. A shiny extension bar was soon located and we headed back home in time for lunch. After eating I returned to the garage and removed the previously inaccessible nut. Then came the tricky job of disconnecting the instruments and swapping them from one cluster to another … An hour later the cluster was back on the bike and I was reconnecting the battery. I checked the lights and all were found to be working so I pressed the choke button and thumbed the starter. She fired up on the second push of the button and ran for the first time in ten months.
Unfortunately it was then time to put the tools away as the dogs needed a walk but this significant progress has restored my motivation and encouraged me to get her cleaned, reassembled and back on the road before the Summer turns to Autumn.
After walking the dogs TP drove me over to see SMS as it was her Birthday today. As we arrived I had a rare encounter with my elder sister and we exchanged polite "hellos" as she gathered up her husband and foster daughter and headed off home. We had a short but pleasant time with BMS and SMS and handed over gifts and caught up on our news before an impending Sunday Dinner forced us to leave.
Sunday evening progressed and two more eBay auctions ended. Late in the evening I had a pleasant conversation with Pete from Oldham who will be making use of his free train pass to come and collect a set of "Brand New Royal Enfield Crash Bars" in the next couple of days.
---* During the missing months I removed the fairing from the Ducati and had the scuffs in the paintwork rectified at a vehicle body shop over at Bidford on Avon. While she was naked I also set about replacing a few components that had been damaged over time. One of these was the instrument surround that had been gnawed by mice during the many years she had been off the road.