took over an hour and a half in the dark with a flashlight.
I don't have to tell you that it gets dark fast this time of year. I rushed home after work so I could work in the daylight to install a RAM mount U-bolt ball mount for my VideoCam
Last week I ordered some RAM mounts for Nu2me and I had them shipped to my work address
Tonight, the plan was to mount them onto my handlebars. I had an hour window of light so I quickly gathered my tools and moved my bikes out of their resting place and got down to business. Before I actually attach them to my handlebars I do mockups of where the best location would be. I held the U-bolt with my left hand, and my videocam in my right hand moving the mounts around to get the best aiming position. I want the camera to be in the wind and not behind the windshield. The U-bolt was hanging by friction on the handlebar when I put the camera down on the bench and then I heard a "clink" sound BUT I did not hear the corresponding "clank" sound of the U-bolt falling to the cement floor
The U-bolt was nowhere to be seen. I looked everywhere. I mean where could it have fallen. I grabbed my flashlight and started peering under the steering head, and then I saw the threaded end of the stainless U-bolt. It had fallen inside the bike, under the gas tank behind the wiring harness and there was no way to get my fingers in there to retreive it. I thought that if I removed some body panels I would have a better chance of grabbing it.
So to secure the bike, I decided to put it on the centre stand to make it more stable. That's when I heard another "clinking" sound. I stopped and grabbed my flashlight again trying to find it. I was shining it everywhere under the tank and it was nowhere to be seen. It had originally fallen onto a wiring harness, but it had fallen again from there to somewhere lower down.
The R1200R uses a telelever suspension and there is a shock/spring combo under the triple tree and I was afraid that this U-bolt may have jammed itself in there, or it may have jammbed if I rode the bike and tried to make a turn, which would not be a good situation. I thought that the best course of action would be to retrieve it. So with my toolkit out and an assortment of Torx bits I started removing plastic panels.
I was working in failing light and soon I had to work with my flashlight as time was ticking away. Sorry for lack of photos but I was more concerned with retrieving this small bit of metal, rather than documenting this unfortunate circumstance which has turned a quick job into a time consuming recovery
The U-bolt had fallen on top of the engine between some fins and I had to use a coat hanger to fish it out. Eventually I worked it out and installed the panels and got back to what I started an hour earlier, before this diversion
This is not the best angle to show you but I used two RAM arms connected with a double RAM ball, and a tripod plate so I could angle my GoProHD to the left of my windshield. My idea is to record video so no part of my bike is visible with the camera floating in space.
On Nu2me the windshield and headlight turns with the handlebars, so aiming the camera is easier as once in position nothing moves. On my Vstrom the windshield and headlights are fixed so when you mount a camera on the handlebars, it moves and you have to be careful that it doesn't hit anything when you turn.
Since there is not much handlebar space I had to put my RAM mount on the wrong side of the clutch reservoir so I bought the short RAM arm so that the longer RAM arm can aim to the left of the windscreen. I think the recording angle is going to be just right
So this is how a quick job turns into a labour intensive hour and a half
Facsimilie of the offending lost U-bolt