Sunday, November 13, 2011

Running errands has never been this much fun !!

Running errands has never been this much fun !!

Being a hardcore DIY enthusiast I run around a lot to hardware stores and machine shops and often these are in tiny lanes where going in a car is a drag and taking a Harley into some areas of the town draws too much attention.

Many years ago I rode a automatic scooter and loved it. I found it to be a brilliant urban commute. So when I felt the need to get something to run errands I thought of getting an Activa.

Then I thought, even if its errands why not have some fun. I've been a Royal Enfield fan for ages and even to this day I always tune into a RE passing by enjoying its thump. When the new 500 Classic was released I went to the showroom and checked it out. A few months ago I got a chance to ride one and really liked the ride.

I liked the finish and look of the 500 and so this August I went into the showroom and put down a small deposit. I was told it would take 6-7 months. I was in no hurry to get one so I booked a black Classic 500.

Last Saturday as I was walking around my place of work doing my usual hunting for odd bits required for some restoration work I am doing, as I passed the showroom I stepped in and chatted the sales exec saying " See if you can get me a black 500 soon"

No sooner did I return to my office I got a call from the showroom

"If we organise a black Classic 500 can you pick it up right away?" said the lady owner of the showrooom on the line

"Yes but I guess I need to wait for the cheque to clear, so I can take it next week once it clears?" I said, expecting them to agree on that

"Not really, you are welcome to take it home this evening before the cheque clears, we'll finish the PDI soon"

Wow, I guess being in the automotive industry helps as its rare for a showroom to deliver on cheque. Not believing I was going to get the bike against cheque I actually called from home saying "Am taking an auto to come over, do I get the bike today?"

"Yes" was the answer and this is what I rode back home last Saturday evening !! A gorgeous new Royal Enfield Classic 500

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As I rode home I couldn't help but smile. The RE Classic 500 is a very refined bike. It rides smooth and has a lovely suspension that soaks up road imperfections brilliantly. The ride quality is actually impressive.

When I reached home I realised the battery had run dry and it wouldn't start with the self starter. So I took the battery out and charged it overnight thinking a hurried PDI may have overlooked this aspect. It ran okay the next few days but frequent night riding with headlamps drained the battery out again. I pulled out a volt meter and checked the charging and discovered the charge current wasn't reaching the battery. Took the bike back to the dealer and by evening they fixed the problem. It was a earth that was short circuiting the generator.

Yesterday as I scooted around town on an errand which required me to go into congested and tiny lanes I knew this was the perfect solution ! Gone are the days when I had to park my car in far away lanes and walk a distance to a shop in a congested lane. I rode up to the shop on one of the busiest of intersections, finished my work and was out in a breeze ! I had found my perfect errand bike. And the best part is it looks great, rides very well and sounds delightful !

The first thing I did was to take the pillion seat off. Will get the saree guard off too. Planning on designing some super attractive paniers for the 500

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