Last Friday, I left Mount Desert Island, Maine with my GPS set for Milton Mills, NH to spend the night with an old riding buddy of mine; Scott. One my way South, I ran a quick errand in Portland. I arrived at Scott's in time to head out for dinner.
On Saturday morning, Scott and I rode our motorcycles up to the Whitehorse Gear Open House event located in East Conway, NH. We spent about 2 hrs there, talking with riders, checking out bikes and munching on plate fulls of fantastic, (FREE!!!!), food, (It was one heck of an Open House!).
Around noon-time, Scott and I headed up Rt 113, (for those of you who know, you are grinning, right?), to Gorham, NH. At the intersection of Rt 113 and Rt 2, Scott and I parted ways; he headed back down Rt 113 for Milton Mills and I started cutting across NH, VT and up into Québec. I was shooting for Magog, Québec and Rancho Du Spaghetti, where I have stayed four times before, (I really like this place!).
Sunday morning, I cut across lots of farm country, using as many dirt roads as I could find, (I know this area fairly well now). I crossed back into Maine around 11:30 am at the Corburn Gore crossing. Because I was "early", I decided to extend my journey by picking up the Gold Brook Road, (just South of Natanis Pond), and ride that up to the Spencer Lake Road and out to Rt 201 at Lake Parlin, (about 40 miles of dirt logging roads).
It was about 1:00pm when I got to Rt 201, just South of Jackman. I decided to do more dirt riding. I rode down to The Forks and picked up the Moxie Pond Rd, then the Brouchu Rd and rode that all the way to Greenville. Once in Greenville, it was time to "make hay" for home. That was about 80 miles of "up-on-the-pegs" riding. At a given point, I was about 20 miles from any help...........
(The total mileage was about 755 miles for the weekend.)
Yesterday, (Monday), I decided it was time to remove the lackluster Metzeler Karoos that I had won last year for being the "high mileage" contest winner at my local dealership. I was hoping to get more mileage out of these tires compared to the TKC-80s that I like to run. I'm on a "thin edge" and mounted up a used, front and rear, set of Anakees I had hanging around.
While the rear wheel was off, I decided to clean the chain. After completing that task, I mounted the rear wheel into the swingarm and then gave the wheel a "test spin" with my hand. Something didn't sound right, nor did it feel right.
I sighted down the chain towards the front sprocket. When I was cleaning the chain, the chain jumped off the countersprocket. I was now faced with a choice; drop the rear wheel, or remove the countersprocket cover so that I could get the chain back on to the countersprocket.
I don't know why, but I chose to remove the sprocket cover.
This is what I found.
The countersprocket nut had loosened up and backed off the threads enough that it was cutting through the clutch release mechanism.
Here is the washer.
Take a close look, (Greywolf is going to pick up immediately on what was going on.). When I installed my last set of sprockets and chain, I also installed a new countersprocket washer. I also made the decision, (after torquing down the countersprocket nut), NOT to fold the edge of the washer over to lock the nut in place.
I used my Dremel tool to clean up the washer as best as I could, and reassembled everything. AND, folded the washer down over the nut. (I will get a new washer and clutch release mechanism.......after I get new sprockets..........and new tires...........)
While I was putting the bike back together, I got to thinking about the 3 1/2 miles that I had to push my bike out of the woods last year when I hydrolocked the motor when I dumped the bike in a big mud puddle. If the countersprocket nut had backed off farther and had completely cut through the clutch release mechanism, I would still be in the woods today..........still pushing.
So everyone, please check your nuts before you leave home.