More Bike Challenges

This weekend I had a great time hanging out with my mum and my family and friends here at home and up at RMNP. On the beautiful, sunny Sunday afternoon, I started up towards Erie on the bike. About halfway there I had some trouble that I initially interpreted as a low gas tank. Unfortunately, even after I filled the tank and even when I was going downhill, the engine just wouldn't go. I parked the bike and made a few calls: one to my gathered family (waiting for me to arrive) to give me a ride, and one to a friend of mine who has been riding for most of his life. I needed an expert ear to diagnose the problem.

Now, after some thought and some tests (and with the bike back in the garage), here is the working theory: the regulator (akin to an alternator) is no longer working. From my house to the point where I started having trouble, I was using the electricity in the battery, not the electricity generated by the engine. I ran out of electricity, not gas, and only recharging the battery with a trickle charger allowed me to ride the back back home. So now I plan to order a new one and with the help of my friend, install it.

What a great "opportunity" to learn about my bike!


Dr. Phil (Physics) said...

The Car Talk guys like to talk about the three things to consider with a gasoline engine: air, fuel, spark.

Amazing what will fail to work when any one of that triangle is missing or misbehaving.

Dr. Phil

John the Scientist said...

Had that happen in a car. Except the alternator would randomly reverse polarity and suck juice *out* of the battery.

Damndest thing the mechanics ever saw, and took them forever to diagnose it.

Jeri said...

You have a much better attitude than I. :) I'd just as soon not know quite as much about my boat. LOL

Unknown said...

At least it was diagnosed. That is the basic.