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Motorcycle News (UK) - - Riding -

I’ve picked up a stone chip through my Honda VFR1200F’S ra­di­a­tor and I’ve just dis­cov­ered that an OE re­place­ment is £1097. What are my op­tions for get­ting this small leak re­paired? It’s also made me think that it wouldn’t be much fun get­ting stranded in the Alps on the big Euro­pean tour I’ve got planned this sum­mer. Is there a road­side re­pair kit I can keep in my lug­gage that will still al­low me to get a per­ma­nent re­pair done when I get back to the UK? John Maid­low, Pin­ner

A An­swered by Gavin Cooper, Aaron Ra­di­a­tors A stone chip will prob­a­bly have dam­aged one of the tubes in the core and can be per­ma­nently re­paired with some spe­cific ad­he­sive. You’d ex­pect to pay around £100 in­clud­ing re­turn de­liv­ery and we’d try and turn it around in a cou­ple of days. Solder­ing isn’t pos­si­ble be­cause all bike ra­di­a­tors are made from an alu­minium al­loy that won’t take it.

If the bike has been dropped and the core is more heav­ily dam­aged or suf­fer­ing from old age you are look­ing at a com­plete re-core, which typ­i­cally starts at £300 with a 14-day turn­around from us. Stone guards and crash bungs go a long way to­wards pro­tect­ing del­i­cate ra­di­a­tors.

For a road­side re­pair kit carry some emery cloth and a two-part ad­he­sive that ideally has at least 120°C tem­per­a­ture re­sis­tance, like Araldite Re­pair or Araldite Me­tal Re­pair. Gen­tly push back the fins within 2mm of the hole, then rub down and clean and dry the area with the emery be­fore putting a small blob of glue in place. Give it an hour and you should be safely back on the road.

‘You can refuse to at­tend the safety course but you could be charged’

I was rid­ing along a coun­try lane be­hind a car at about 30mph, the limit was 60mph. There was a straight sec­tion of road so I de­cided to over­take as there was no on­com­ing traf­fic. I passed the car and was about to pull back into the left-hand lane when an­other car pulled out of a layby on the other side of the road, clip­ping my bike and send­ing me fly­ing.

The po­lice now ex­pect me to go on a Driver Im­prove­ment Course, stat­ing that I was the cause of the ac­ci­dent be­cause I over­took close to the layby. My view is that the driver did not look be­fore pulling out. Do I have to go on the course, and also could I make a suc­cess­ful claim even if the po­lice re­port says the ac­ci­dent is my fault? Jonny, Winch­ester A You are en­ti­tled to make a claim, ir­re­spec­tive of what the po­lice re­port says. The po­lice re­port may be used by the other party, but this is not a case in which I be­lieve you should be ac­cept­ing any li­a­bil­ity as­sum­ing your ma­noeu­vre had com­menced be­fore the car pulled out.

If suc­cess­ful you can ex­pect com­pen­sa­tion for in­juries and any fi­nan­cial losses in­curred.

Also, you are within your rights to refuse the safety course if you do not feel you were re­spon­si­ble. How­ever, you may then be taken to court on a prob­a­ble charge of care­less driv­ing. Whether you want to de­fend that and run the risk of be­ing found guilty and re­ceiv­ing points and a fine is up to you.

Small stone chips in your ra­di­a­tor can be re­paired

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