August 7, 2009

From Unicycles to Motorcycle(s)

When I was 16 years old I took a motorcycle safety course in Minneapolis and took the exam to get my motorcycle permit. I passed, and drove around Minneapolis for about a week. Knowing little about motorcycles I forgot to check the oil level and burned out the engine of my cool little Kawasaki 90:

Well, it's been 28 years and I've always wanted to get another "bike" to travel around home with. After mentioning it off & on for the last few weeks, my wife, Deb, simply said, "You're not getting any younger. Go get one."

So I started looking online for the right cycle. Not too big, but not so small that I would be disappointed in a month that it can't go where I want to go.

I checked eBay, Motorcycle Trader and Craig's List. I knew my parameters: must be able to maintain 55 mph in case I go on a highway, must be able to safely carry one other passenger, must be less than $1000.00 and must be in good/great condition.

After narrowing it down to 2 different cycles, and with feedback from my brother and father-in-law, I decided to purchase a 1982 Yamaha 400 Seca from a young man that was getting ready to ship off to basic training for the Navy.

It is a great cycle, but needs new tires and a basic overall check-up before I totally trust taking it out on the open road.

We made the drive to Rush City, MN, to find new helmets for us. Dennis Kirk is the largest supplier of after market cycle and snowmobile parts in the country. We found two nice helmets at a great price.
While the cycle is in for it's exam, Debbie & I went this morning for our motorcycle permit tests. We both passed with almost perfect scores.

The cycle should be ready for us by Wednesday. Sadly, I will be gone on tour until August 20th, so Deb will get to test it out while I am gone. I'll get my opportunity when I return.

Anyone else have a cycle and want to go riding some afternoon, please call me after the 20th of August. And my goal, if at all possible, is to avoid interstate highways and explore all the back roads of east central Minnesota.

Watch for us, wave and smile as we go by.

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