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Just thought I'd share a scary incident that happened to me on my new bike last week:

My best friend and I got up early last Friday morning and made the 100 mile trek to Hollister to get custom seats made for our scoots @ the Corbin seat factory. He bought an 04' YZF R1 last October and was ecstatic when I got my FZ6 (in the faster blue color, of course) knowing he'd have a buddy to drive down to Corbin with. We got off on the 156 East exit heading towards Hollister from south bound Hwy 101. Just as we entered the ramp I gently applied very slight pressure to my back brake while also giving a gentle squeeze to my front brake. The front brake was loose and unresponsive. The ramp is also a blind, decreasing radius ramp. I about peed my pants until I realized that I did have a fully functional back break. A mile or so down the road I had to stop at a traffic light. This time the front brake worked without incident and continued to function the remainder of the short drive to the factory. When I got off my bike, my buddy pointed down at my tire. The bolts from the right side of the front disc brake had fallen out somewhere along the way. The casing that held the bolts was swinging freely and numerous scratches were clearly etched in the black paint of the casing. Total number of miles on the bike at time of incident=550 (it only had 3 miles on it when I bought it on 05/26). We taped the brake hoses in place and I drove 2 miles into the town of Hollister to the local Kawasaki dealership while the guys at Corbin worked on my new seat. The supposedly standard bolt (according to the service guy at Bay Area Yamaha where I bought my bike) was not so standard and the lone service man who was working in a large barn type building in the back of the dealership rooted around in vain for a workable part before sending one of the guys in the parts area out to the Ford dealership to look for the part. They could not find the exact part but were able to get one similar enough that I would not have any safety issues riding the bike. He also informed me that the identical casing on the left hand side of the disc was also loose and that it was only a matter of time before I would lose the bolts on that side as well. The service guy's name was Don Castro. He tightened all the bolts on my brake and checked other areas of the bike before declaring my bike "road safe." I grabbed my wallet and asked "how much do I owe you?" and he said "Nothing. Just come back and visit sometime." He refused to take any money despite my protests. My buddy and I did return after getting our seats finished and insisted on his taking a $20 bill. He smiled and said "I guess I could take my girlfriend out to dinner tonight."

Interesting side note: While Mr. Don Castro was servicing my bike we chatted a bit and he showed me large black and white posters up on the wall of the service dept. depicting track bikes racing in the 1960's. He pointed to one of the posters and said "That one's me." Apparently he was quite well known at one time and they even did an after school special about him called "Learning Curve." Now he appears to be the local Yoda of machinery gauging by the treatment he was receiving from some of the locals. Cool guy. Still goes out to the track regularly, but only as an onlooker these days.
Lucky me to have a.) Not gotten killed due to front brake failure. b.) Still able to make it to Hollister and have a totally awesome custom seat put on my new scoot, and 3.) I got to meet a really cool dude!

As far as the bike goes, I called the customer service dept. of Yamaha and related my brake failure story. My bike is scheduled for it's 600 mile service for later this week and, according to the person I spoke too, any and all damage done to my bike resulting from this incident will be repaired under warranty. Happy ending? I hope so!
 

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What was it that came loose? I'm not quite following what it was.
 

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V-twin anyone?
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It sounds like you got away lucky. I'm sure Yamaha is going to replace all the scratched up pieces. Don't forget to have them replace both side bolts. Happy riding!
 

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Maybe slightly off topic, but since I am mechanically challenged could someone recommend torque wrenches that I should buy and any other tools and cleaners so I can check & clean my bike. Being a :newbie I plan to get in the habit early of checking my bike before I ride.

:newbie with a big smile :smilierr
 

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A friend of mine:

"If you're getting this for bike work you probably want two: one for lbs/inch (or N/cm) and one for lbs/ft (N/m). You'll find that lots of things like oil pumps, and cover plates require small torque ratings - 35 in-lbs for instance."

People in here also recommended to me the 1/2" and 3/8" sockets. If you search threads for "torque wrench", no doubt it will come up. I went with HarborFreight click type, as inexpensive yet functional.
 

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CheapBastard said:
Maybe slightly off topic, but since I am mechanically challenged could someone recommend torque wrenches that I should buy and any other tools and cleaners so I can check & clean my bike. Being a :newbie I plan to get in the habit early of checking my bike before I ride.

:newbie with a big smile :smilierr
There are a few options when it comes to torque wrenches, and it really boils down to how much you want to pay. You can get a simple beam type for about $20. You can also get a dial torque wrench for a bit more, but the best to get, but also the most expensive are the click-style torque wrenches.
 

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And you can always go for the factory gold-plated Snap-On digitals. (drool)
 

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karst said:
And you can always go for the factory gold-plated Snap-On digitals. (drool)



:drool

yeah my dad had a 1/2 and a 3/4 inch set of those! Too bad that they got stolen about 10 years ago with about $5,000 worth of other mechanic tools for working on rigs and heavy equipment. I dont remember if they were snap on or SK but i know they were digital and really really expensive. Hell my dad used to have sockets up to 4" for taking tracks off big bulldozers.
 

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kdk1899 said:
:drool

yeah my dad had a 1/2 and a 3/4 inch set of those! Too bad that they got stolen about 10 years ago with about $5,000 worth of other mechanic tools for working on rigs and heavy equipment. I dont remember if they were snap on or SK but i know they were digital and really really expensive. Hell my dad used to have sockets up to 4" for taking tracks off big bulldozers.
The 4" sockets must have required a 3/4" drive ratchet with like a 6' handle!
 

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WOW, glad things worked out ok and you weren't hurt. Really man, you should have pulled over to check it out after your experience on the ramp.

Cool experience to have met such a cool guy though. Sounds like he was really going out of his way for you. I can relate because I ran into people like that when I lived just north of Pittsburgh. Down here in Florida though... you'd never get treated like that. They'd probably kick your ass out for having a Yamaha at a Kawi dealership, or try pressuring you into buying one of theirs! :lol
 

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Sounds like a terrible place... good thing you've got the weather on your side. :)
 

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Wow, that's a good reminder for everyone to check the torques on all the fasteners. It's part of each of the periodic services, but I've never heard of a dealer actually doing it. I checked mine at 600 miles, and had quite a bit of loose stuff. Luckily not the brakes!

I've got a couple of the clicky-type, one in inch-pounds for stuff like the covers, and one in foot-pounds for axles, engine mounts, etc.
 

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Still waiting on my wrenches. I plan on a full day of cleaning, polishing, checking this that and the other. Next Sunday, I hope. I should have a GIVI box and sliders to install at the same time. Plus I'll be repacking my first aid and tools into the seat well.

You might want to download the service manual (it's got all the torque specs) some time when you don't mind tying up your connection for a few minutes. It's about 17M and 400 pages.
 
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