Give life to old calipers

Motorcycle News (UK) - - This Week - Con­tact www.pow­er­

Pow­er­house brake caliper re­furb ser­vice £154

Tester Emma Franklin

Time tested One re­build

What’s good The To­kico calipers on my 1990 Kawasaki KR-1S had suf­fered a hard life; the seals were old and hard, the paint was worn and there was a fair bit of cor­ro­sion. So the Pow­er­house on­estop-shop brake caliper re­furb ser­vice came as a bit of a god­send. I sim­ply re­moved my calipers, pack­aged them up and posted them di­rectly to their Ch­ester­field work­shop. Once there, tech­ni­cians as­sessed them, stripped them back to bare metal, cleaned the years of cor­ro­sion away, re­coated the caliper bod­ies with fresh gold paint then fit­ted new seals, bleed nip­ples and bolts. Two weeks later they were back, look­ing and per­form­ing bet­ter than new. Hap­pily, my caliper pis­tons were in ser­vice­able con­di­tion so didn’t need re­plac­ing, but if they had Pow­er­house say they would’ve sent me pic­tures of them be­fore pro­ceed­ing with fit­ting re­place­ments (at a cost of be­tween £13 and £20 each).

What’s not? You’ll have to wait an av­er­age of two weeks to get your calipers back, so you’ll need to be pa­tient. How­ever, Pow­er­house also of­fer an ex­change ser­vice on some mod­els of pop­u­lar calipers, and can even send you a pair out in ad­vance.

Spada Pil­grim rid­ing shoes £99.99

Tester Si­mon Brown

Time tested Three months/1500 miles

What’s good? These look great. When you ride a retro like my Du­cati Scram­bler it seems daft turn­ing up with full-on boots, but wear­ing footwear that’s not de­signed with a de­gree of pro­tec­tion in mind seems fool­hardy. So what you get are re­in­forced toe and heel sec­tions and a higher top than nor­mal shoes so you get some pro­tec­tion against crush­ing in­juries. The sole is an old-school leather/wood com­bi­na­tion and there’s an ex­tra layer of leather to pro­tect the up­per from con­tact with the gear lever. Comfort and fit are fine both on and off the bike. What’s not? It was all go­ing so well un­til the rub­ber sec­tion on the heel of my left boot dropped off. A closer in­spec­tion has re­vealed that the right boot may well suf­fer the same is­sue. Spada’s dis­trib­u­tor are look­ing at the boots with a view to re­pair or re­place­ment. Hope­fully they will be back soon.

Con­tact www.spada­cloth­

Qual­ity ★★★★★

Value ★★★★★

Shark Race-r Pro-car­bon £499

Tester James Archibald

Time tested Six months/8000 miles

What’s good? This hel­met oozes qual­ity, but not in an over­stated way. This is car­ried over to how it feels too with its com­pos­ite-fi­bre shell be­ing both ro­bust and light. Fea­tures seem to fo­cus on sim­plic­ity and ef­fi­ciency, which makes for a good com­bi­na­tion – the front vent for ex­am­ple is as straight­for­ward as it gets with a sim­ple flap that’s easy to op­er­ate while rid­ing and func­tions ex­actly as it should. The vi­sor mech­a­nism is straight­for­ward and well-con­structed too, mak­ing it easy to lift and change. The hel­met is de­signed to be easy to use with specs – handy when I can’t face stick­ing lenses in.

What’s not? The mag­netic clasp that re­tains the loose end of the strap comes un­done when I’m rid­ing. At this price the stan­dard vi­sor should be at least Pin­lock ready, rather than an £89.99 ex­tra for a dif­fer­ent vi­sor (with an­other £30 for the in­sert it­self).


Qual­ity ★★★★★

Value ★★★★★

Petzl Tikkina head torch £13.11

Tester Richard New­land

Time tested Eight months

What’s good? This is very much at the bud­get end of the head­torch spec­trum, but I took the plunge on the ba­sis that it was from a solid brand, and had at­tracted a lot of five-star re­views on Ama­zon. And I’ve not been dis­ap­pointed. I use this pre­dom­i­nantly for work­shop du­ties, ei­ther hand-hold­ing it, or more of­ten strap­ping it to my nog­gin and en­joy­ing hands-free il­lu­mi­na­tion dif­fi­cult-to-reach places. One click gets you il­lu­mi­nated, a sec­ond click gets a se­ri­ously bright light, and a third switches it off again. It’s also an­gle-ad­justable, which is a use­ful fea­ture, and runs on three AAA bat­ter­ies, which last sev­eral months of reg­u­lar use. Build qual­ity is higher than you’d ex­pect at this price, while it is ob­vi­ously un­likely to out­live most of its own­ers. The head strap is com­fort­able, ad­justable, and also wash­able, while the beam of light is a good com­pro­mise: wide enough for gen­eral light­ing, and fo­cused enough for de­tail work. A great bud­get­priced piece of kit.

What’s not? Hon­estly, I can’t fault it.

Con­tact www.ama­

Qual­ity ★★★★ ★

Value ★★★★★

BE­FORE The 26-year-old KR-1S calipers were scuffed, cor­roded and in a bit of a sorry state. FRESH Stripped down and back to bare metal, Pow­er­house re­freshed the seals and even fit­ted shiny new bleed nip­ples and bolts.



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