You un­grate­ful lit­tle…

Edi­tor hands his sorted GSX-R to art edi­tor, who im­me­di­ately breaks it. That’s grat­i­tude for you

Performance Bikes (UK) - - Long - Termers -

2017 SUZUKI GSX-R1000R AUSTIN SMITH

THE FIRST TWO days on Chris’s hand-me-down GSX-R were great: since my 2017 Su­per Duke GT was re­turned, I’ve been riding my 1997 VFR750 hack. I’ll never knock it, but it al­ways feels so flat and unin­spir­ing af­ter just about ev­ery test bike I’ve rid­den. Re­mem­ber that pic­ture of Trev Franklin riding one in a flat cap with a pipe on the go? The old Honda does that to you – I end up plod­ding along, the en­joy­ment of be­ing on a bike ebbing away.

His Suzuki snapped me out of it just as I was con­tem­plat­ing IAM cour­ses and lob­by­ing my coun­cil­lor for lower speed lim­its... The buzzing, snarling Suzuki is firm, sharp and ex­cit­ing, even on wet roads. Ev­ery­thing is so direct, I was much more con­fi­dent in the crap con­di­tions. My squidgy old Honda leaves the ex­act grip avail­able in some doubt, but the GSX-R, on Bridge­stone S21s, is stick­ing to the road and let­ting you know it’s OK. It’s nice to have the com­fort of the elec­tron­ics, but it hasn’t in­ter­vened with trac­tion con­trol or ABS yet.

It was all go­ing great, un­til I wheeled it out and turned it on to ride to work a few morn­ings later. The dash lit up, the fuel pump whirred... fuel jet­ted out both sides of the bike, down the cases and over my feet. I turned it back off, and took a look for any­thing ob­vi­ous, but it was com­ing from within the bow­els of the bike. Pushed for time, I had to put it away, dis­card my un­leaded-soaked gear and take the car.

I didn’t feel con­fi­dent pok­ing around un­der the tank on some­one else’s bike in my un­lit shed, so Whitey (who’ll do any­thing for a fiver – any­thing...) fetched and ran his ex­pe­ri­enced, bony fin­gers over it.

As it hap­pens, I could have done it – lift­ing the tank only re­quires two trim pan­els and the seat off to al­low the tank to pivot up on its rear mount. Spec­u­la­tion was rife: a for­got­ten clip on a fuel hose, or a pres­surised line split, or the short, hard to fit top in­jec­tor feed not quite fit­ted prop­erly, were all sug­gested as the cause.

As it turned out, it was sim­ple hu­man er­ror at the last ser­vice. The main feed from the fuel pump has a dry-break type fit­ting, and the plas­tic clips hadn’t been en­gaged prop­erly – it can only have been held in place by the in­ter­fer­ence be­tween the two parts. The pres­sure from the pump had taken a while to even­tu­ally push the tube off, al­low­ing the pump to spray freely un­der the tank. Whitey re­fit­ted it, and triple checked the clips have re­tained their in­tegrity (they have), and that there’s no way an­other com­po­nent could press on them and al­low them to slip off (there isn’t).

Sim­ple hu­man er­ror: a fate that be­fell the GSX-R a sec­ond time, when I went to move the bike and for­got the disc lock I’d fit­ted. So I’ve care­fully su­per­glued the broken chips of mud­guard back on. Sorry Chris, I promise to look af­ter it bet­ter now (know what a P45 is? You soon will – CN).

‘I’ve care­fully su­per­glued the broken chips of front mud­guard back on’

Mid­dle-aged man in flap causes disc lock ding Fuel pump was piss­ing un­leaded all over the cases, like a tiny plas­tic race­horse. Plas­tic se­cur­ing clips were un­dam­aged MONTH TEN

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