February 4, 2001

So, sorry that I haven't been very punctual about reporting updates with the dealership excursion this weekend. I got home from the dealership and almost immediately, my annoying sore throat turned into the Evil Sore Throat, complete with all-over achiness and lack of energy. My hair hurt. So, I just tossed on my pjs and curled up on the couch to watch The Simpsons with Peter until I crashed. I'm feeling almost human now, though, so I'm attempting an entry. My home computer is also kind of back up -- it's working, but it's been randomly shutting itself off tonight, so I might get fed up and stop tonight's entry early. We'll see.

the good stuff.
So, I know noone reads this to find out how I was feeling over the weekend, so I'll move right along to the good stuff -- the new bike! I won't keep anyone in suspense any longer: I did buy the bike, everything worked out pretty well, and it's getting delivered tomorrow. There was some minor drama about how it was going to get home yesterday, but U-Haul didn't have any trucks free, the bike delivery guy that the dealership works with was booked up, and I wasn't feeling well enough to ride a new bike home 80 miles. So I finally just said, "to heck with it" and am having the guy ship it tomorrow. Besides, the thought of putting a helmet on over this sore throat has been enough to keep my patience going. ;)

So Peter and I went down to the dealership in Salinas yesterday afternoon. We wandered around the showroom, looking at the pretty bikes, until a sales guy came and ushered us into chairs. To make a really long story short, he gave me the price: MSRP plus freight/assembly plus dealer markup plus tax. Freight and assembly ended up being close to $600, which didn't thrill me, and I wasn't happy about a $800 dealer markup, either. To make another really long story short, I got him to totally take off the dealer markup, so I ended up just paying MSRP + freight/assembly + tax. It ended up being a bit more than I was expecting to pay (I had assumed that the $500 discount that I was promised would come off of MSRP, but I wasn't feeling well and didn't feel like fighting that), but Peter and I talked about it, and I decided that it was worth the extra couple hundred dollars to have the peace of mind of actually getting the bike instead of continuing to shop around. So I signed the paperwork, and then we sat around for the rest of forever waiting for them to start prepping the bike. We went in to talk to the finance guy, who was pretty nice. We charged the down payment on Peter's credit card (yes, I'm paying him back; I'm not that spoiled!), and then the finance guy ran some numbers and approved me for a *different* credit card through them. So, basically, the remainder of the bike's cost was put on this other credit card, and I have roughly a month to pay that off interest-free. Therefore, I have Meriwest send my loan money to me, I use that loan money to pay off this other credit card, and then I take however many months to pay Meriwest back at 15% APR. Kind of confusing, but it gives me another month (well, probably a week or so) to try to find a place to give me a cheaper loan. I might try AEA, or I'll just stop worrying about it and just mail the info off to Meriwest. Anyway, after the finance paperwork was all signed, we were free to go. We hung around for a little bit while the bike was getting prepped (battery charged, fluids topped off, etc), but once we realized that I wasn't going to be riding it home, we just left. And that was that.

I'm still not bouncing-off-the-walls excited yet, since I've only actually seen the new bike for a grand total of like 5 minutes before they whisked it off to be prepped. It's also hard to be really excited about anything when the inside of your throat feels like you've eaten a scrub brush. But I talked to the bike delivery guy this evening, and he says he'll have the bike to me by tomorrow afternoon, and then I'll be very excited. :) Peter's going to try to come over and take pictures of it; it'll depend on when the bike gets here, but I'll definitely have pictures within the next day or so. :)

nighthawk updates.
Well, it turns out that I'm a putz and accidentally put the new upper bearings in upside down the other night. In my defense, there's no mention in the Clymers as to which way is right-side up, and so I had a 50/50 chance. Oh well. The bummer about this is that between pounding them in and pounding them back out, the inner race got bent a little bit. It doesn't stop the bearings from rotating, but it does press against them a little. Since I'm replacing the bearings because of a slight warp in the old bearings, I figured it'd be a little silly to replace them with a bent race, so I'll have to re-order some bearings. *sigh* Luckily, they're not expensive at all, but it'll be another week or two until I can get them (I'm assuming the dealer doesn't stock '86 ball bearings, but I suppose you never know -- they did have my clutch lever in stock last time). I also spent a little time looking around Peter's garage for the screw we lost (OK, *I* lost). I'm still confused about this; it's a 2" long screw that somehow magically disappeared right under our noses in the middle of the garage. I suppose if worse comes to worse, I can always order another screw from the dealer, too. *shrug* I mentioned last time that I couldn't get the lower race off of the steering stem; well, neither can Peter. We tried that for a while today, and he had the stellar achievement of getting the washer that's under the lower race to move, but still no luck on removing the race. Not that we're in any hurry, since I have to re-order the bearings now.

Peter tells me, and I know he's right, that there *is* progress being made on the silly thing, even if it feels like one step forward, two steps back. I am having fun with it, and I know I'm learning a lot...it's just frustrating because I'm getting stuck on little stupid things like a stuck race or a missing screw. Ah well, no one ever said life was easy. :)

Well, that's all folks. You'll hear all about the new bike and hopefully see some pictures in the next entry, which will either be tomorrow (if I don't make it to the computer repair place) or sometime later this week (if I do take the computer in). :)

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