I’ve just about had it with the ‘Zuki. She’s handsome in an ugly-duckling, form-follows-function sort of way and her particular shade of blue strikes my fancy quite well, thankyouverymuch. She isn’t beautiful, by any means, but I knew that going in. She gets good gas mileage (50+ mpg), handles well…considering she’s neither a sport bike nor a full-boat touring-hog… and has about the right amount of power. The power isn’t sport-bike intense, which is to say “peaky,” but is well-distributed across the rev-range. Torque-y, in other words. She is a vee-twin, after all. So. What’s not to like?
Just this: She keeps falling over.
I dropped the damned thing again today. It was the same sort of scenario as last time— a low-speed, as in “standing nearly still,” slow-motion get-off, more like a “fall-over,” actually. But I did the dirty deed right in my frickin’ front yard this time, instead of a parking lot. I should explain…
I park the thing on the concrete pad/sidewalk next to El Casa Móvil De Pennington and always ride across the neighbor on the right’s grass and up on to the pad. It’s a fairly simple maneuver, with a couple of minor complications. First: You can’t approach the pad perpendicular to it; you must come in at an angle. Unless you want to run into El Casa Móvil, which isn’t a particularly good idea for all concerned: RV, bike, and YrHmblScrb…who kinda likes his body “as is.” Second: The pad is about an inch and a half to two inches higher than the grass. One maintains enough momentum on the approach to roll up on to the pad with the front wheel (bump!), ease off the throttle, turn the bike slightly to the right, while maintaining sufficient momentum to ease the rear wheel up on to the pad. And today the combination of INsufficient momentum, coupled with the rear tire hitting the lip of the pad and sliding out to the right…ever so gently, at first… before the bike fell right over. I couldn’t catch it. Once that thing starts to go…it’s GOING, whether you like it, or not.
The good news: I fell in the grass. The soft landing meant no damage to the fiberglass, I “just” broke the right turn signal. And got a lot of dirt in the foot pegs and various and sundry other nooks, crevices, and crannies.
The bad news: I’ve lost confidence in my ability to manage the damned thing at slow speeds. The bike, as I see it, is just too tall for me. That and the fact that it’s one heavy SOB. This is the second time I’ve dropped it, and that’s twice more than any of my previous bikes, going back to at least 1969 or so. (I have a great story about dropping my old Yamaha DT-1 in the BX parking lot at
in '69 or '70. Remind me to tell you that one. Some time.) Wakkanai AS, Japan
So. Wanna buy a bike? Inquire within.
Oh…NO pictures this time. She looked pathetic laying there on her side in the grass. I couldn’t bear to embarrass her by showing her a$$ in public. Goes for me, too. Writing this is bad enough.