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Sunday, June 29, 2008

Snaps :: June 29 :: Tagaytay

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Month-Close Sunday Ride

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Having only 2 hours sleep prior to getting up and ready for the last ride of this month did a lot for me, since I usually suffer from sleepy eyes if I lose ZZZs. But this morning was no different from those mornings that I have to go home after spending the night at the office without a wink. I am wide awake. It always happens when I sit on the bike. Even though I zombie through the halls ready to fall all the way down the parking basement, I always immediately snap into full caffeine mode till I get home safe.

Met up with Ed and Cynthia, Gil, Edwin, Barrucho along Sucat road and off we went into SLEX to Shell where we hooked up with the rest of the gang - 15 strong. There were two Harleys, a Shadow, CB750s, Steeds, Dragstars, and a 400cc scoot - all you can hear were glorious noise as we safely blasted through the expressway exiting at the usual. I wanted to take out my cam while cruising but heck, I also didn't want to risk it. So okay, just make every stop a photo opportunity.

Wind factor was in chill mode as it just rained late last night close to morning. It was really cold up there, thankfully I have my vest over my Bakersfield jacket over a shirt. Gil was shaking all the way up. I stayed somewhere along the front and in no time we were there. Past where we stayed before but with a great and better view this time. Boogie was nowhere patient as the food did take a lifetime to get done after orders. He hasn't had a wink of sleep after suffering forced bouts with Tekken I think, here he is being intimate with the letter Z, (which later would nearly cost him a scary spill as he dozed off on the road). Ed and Cicero's former team members from Spear brought along a fun bunch on this trip, I didn't feel out of place at all. Too bad there wasn't any TV there at the hut, Pacquiao's match against Diaz is today so tough luck, (later I'd get to watch Diaz slump face first on the floor after a straight left from Manny on the 9th round!) although there was this cat that did want to share our breakfast by hopping on the table every now and then.

We made quick work on the way back as the sky didn't seem happy today. Made our way back via Daang Hari. Stopped over a friend's house on the way back and rode of again after 30 minutes. Encountered drizzle halfway, and rain a third of the way back. We were supposed to wait the rain out at Ed's but we rode on till it really started to pour hard. We were already inside Multinational village and visibility was down to about 20 feet. The rain was that thick and we were riding over large puddles. I decided to turn home towards our village gate instead before my street gets flooded and I can't pass. I waved Edwin goodbye as they went on to Ed's. By the time I was at my gate I might as well have dipped in a pool myself. My wallet was wet. My shoes were all icky inside. My jeans were heavy and wet to my balls. The hanky that covered my face made it difficult to breathe. The vest did a great job of insulating my belt bag which held my camera and phone. It was quite a chore opening the lock to the gate while it was raining but I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Soaked wet and happy. It rained on our little parade. But I think it was the rain that made it a little bit different from the usual dry ride. It provided a bit of excitement at the end. Most of all it was a safe ride. Which is what everyone should be thankful for apart from anything else.

Saturday, June 28, 2008


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Plans have been up since last month in making a hinge for the bob seat I have installed. Up till now it's been screwed tight under the tank. Quite an list of to-do's for the day: paint the welding table, fix the bike's true, clean it for tomorrow, and fabricate this thing. I've already got scraps of steel in my bin, and starting off with just the manual saw told me that it's not really the best way to finish things within the day. So I went the noisy way and halved the damn thing with my metal cutter for a good 30 minutes. Thanks neighbors :)

After some initial tests with the right amp to use, I'm off and running straight till 630PM when the sun sunk earlier than usual and rain started crying down. Happy though, that I finished what I started, and it came out good. I was pleased. Used to have problems with burn-through before but after applying what some good folks advised me at a meet I joined, the L joints yielded good beads with just the right amperage. The steel melted just right and fused good when I dipped the rod. Tested the thing with some hammer blows and not a crack. Anyway, when you're doing something you really like make sure to remember to eat somewhere in the middle. I was so far off into it my tummy was doing the salsa.

Sprayed on temporary paint since I have to strip it off again when I weld the final attachments. Here's the pre-final product welded with the screw hinge mock up stage - and after tacking up before drilling. Not your usual off-the-shelf company manufactured part, but it's simple, efficient, sturdy and most of all, work that came out of my hands. I wasn't intending it to be pretty - the goal rather was it should look industrial and hand-built. I reckon it passes well with that in mind :)

Monday, June 23, 2008

Long Overdue Design

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Haven't posted this before so here it is. I promised I'd post this in the metal forums for a couple of folks I owe much to. They sent me measurements and I translated it to CAD format.
It's a tube and pipe bender but in vertical form. Way more efficient than the first one I did, which required you bolt it down to something really heavy or on the floor. This one requires just a tiny space in the shop and is mobile :)

Mid Year Storm

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Saturday was a really dark day, well I meant the skies, as a storm was scheduled to hit the Metro, I dunno, by tomorrow? Haven't really watched the news lately, but I do know Bicol region is taking a pounding and is up to signal number 3. Brutus is already covered and ready anyway. Jay came over to check out some of my wirings and we'd be replacing a couple of components with the bike by next weekend. I happen to have a blast with my godchild Reese along with Corie, who patiently waited for Jay to finish doing his thing. Sorry I didn't snap any photos.

I also got word from my good friend Shad de Guzman about Grandmaster Nap suffering a stroke and is in QC General Hospital. Master Nap is the founder of YAW-YAN, a lethal Filipino martial art proven in and outside the ring. I hope he pulls through. (As of the moment, he is out of the hospital and is recuperating at home.)

The storm did hit past midnight Sunday and the wind was howling. I stayed up late through 4AM, ready for anything that might happen. Objects were slamming on the roof, the trees outside were really dancing the jig and I kept looking outside checking to see if the van was still intact as it was parked out on the street in the storm. A brownout followed that lasted for 5 hours, but it brought back childhood memories of fun times during brownouts in the middle of a storm. That afternoon greeted me with a bad case of migraine and flu which left me incapacitated till Monday morning - where the first signs of clear weather greeted us. Once again we were carried through another storm and are thankful for blessings of safety and the roof over our heads.

I hope everyone else made it safely through. Though I hear a ship sank somewhere of the coast. Once can never imagine what those people and their relatives are going through right now.

Be well everyone. Oh, and a happy thanksgiving birthday Boogie ;)

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Smart Filipino Abroad

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Lifted this somewhere on the net:

A Filipino walks into a bank in New York City and asks for the loan officer. He tells the loan officer that he is going to the Philippines on business for two weeks and needs to borrow $5,000. The bank officer tells him that the bank will need some form of security for the loan, so the Filipino hands over the keys and documents of new Ferrari parked on the street in front of the bank. He produces the title and everything checks out. The loan officer agrees to accept the car as collateral for the loan.

The bank's president and its officers all enjoy a good laugh at the Filipino for using a $250,000 Ferrari as collateral against a $5,000 loan. An employee of the bank then drives the Ferrari into the bank's underground garage and parks it there.

Two weeks later, the Filipino returns, repays the $5,000 and the interest, which comes to $15.41. The loan officer says, "Sir, we are very happy to have had your business, and this transaction has worked out very nicely, but we are a little puzzled. While you were away, we checked you out and found that you are a multi millionaire. What puzzles us is, why would you bother to borrow "$5,000" ?

The Filipino replies: "Where else in New York City can I park my car for two weeks for only $15.41 and expect it to be there when I return?"

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Thrill Seekers

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The long stretch of road that is Macapagal is abuzz every Saturday of any week ever since time immemorial. When you pass by this area you'd come across folks between 20 to 40 age bracket patiently standing along side their souped up cars, or in groups inside the Shell station area, which by now at 2AM in the morning, is packed on all corners. Since the seals are here the sharks can't be far behind. I didn't get any shots of Manila's Finest doing their "job", but their presence is felt indeed - as many that were already parked when we arrived vanished in an instant. Such is the risk these renegades of the road take for the sake of, let's say, another car for a bet?

Saturday, June 14, 2008

And More Snaps..

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It's time for another installment of snaps. One lazy but blessed Saturday afternoon before the fish came. I really have to find time to visit the metal shop to score some mats for the sissy bar. The seat springs look so cool - can you see the front fenders from here?

Monday, June 09, 2008

A Short Ride Is Everything

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10:47PM - I just came from a short night ride out to Makati and back and it was an absolute dish for my achin' throttle wrist. The road down south was clear to whiz by a couple of other vehicles and trucks. Stopped by Caltex Buendia to grab some 2-piece chickens from KFC. Well, as usual I just had to find an excuse to ride at this time of night. There was no full moon so I wonder what brought about the familiar thirst for wind. As of now? It's welding, welding and more welding practice. Laying down some damn nice beads for a change. New digicam tomorrow so no more boring posts with just blahs.

Monday, June 02, 2008

Free Sitters Suck

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When I got back to the parking lot and prepared to roll out, I slumped on my seat when I sat on it. Clearly there was a clean break INSIDE the seat. Whoever the fat bastard was that had the nerve to sit on my seat while it was peacefully parked in the guarded lot must have been one big-ass mutha.

Ok so what to do? Confront the guard? I don't want to implicate anyone. Better keep it to myself. I'm giving the guards the benefit of the doubt. Especially that big one. He's had a tough day already I thought, "Just sit your ass down towards the rear springs and you'll do fine." So on the ride home my mind was already grinding out some blueprints. I had to fabricate a steel support running from the front screws towards the back perpendicular to the springs. Good thing I bought some steel strips at my local shop so I can just TIG weld the darn thing. It came out exactly measured out to the seat's specs. What started out as a seemingly unfortunate event - elicited a solution to the bounce I get from the previous seat setup. The middle just after the last front screw was taking the full weight. It was just right for me, but not for the culprit. The new brace was the perfect solution. It is much more stable now.

I've had cases like that when I park in front of fast foods and eat outside a good distance from the bike - other enthusiasts buzz around it, bending over the details, twisting the throttle, squeezing the clutch, finger painting the flamed tank and rear fender and finally, violating property by sitting and feeling the stretch my apes have. Oh yeah, they bounce on the shocks too. I've never been one to make a scene. I just watch without them knowing. But this is just the kind of character these people exhibit that I despise. I mean just because the seat is exposed doesn't mean you can sit on it, freak.. I'm thinking of rigging the darn thing with a tazer shock that goes off when you make contact with the bike. Somewhere around 20,000 volts and up would be really fun.


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