Just a garage

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  • Yeah I think it's just everything in that time period. Anyone who was a teenager at that time, now has enough money to realise the dream and when they go to look and find that there are less good ones left than they produced originally, it drives the price up. 90's nostalgia seems to be hitting particularly hard.

    In reference to your latest update, how does the SRAD compare against something more modern like your lovely Aprilia?

  • how does the SRAD compare against something more modern like your lovely Aprilia?

    Although both sports bikes they're extremely different, which is convenient for a 2 bike garage. There's only 3 years between them but the SRAD feels a lot older... It's a 1999 which was Suzuki's last (SRAD 750) model year and the RSV was made in late 2003, for the 2004 release. To add to that the SRAD was originally launched in 1996 so there's a bit more to it than looking at the specs on paper. I guess the SRAD was the first generation of fuel injection and the RSV was the 2nd. There's also the engines, level of finish and size but we'll come to that.

    Being an inline 4 the SRAD is boring below 5,000 rpm, but at 7,000 and beyond all hell breaks loose and you have to just hold on. It's well documented the geometry was based on Kevin Schwantz's RGV500 so the bike feels nimble, light and is compact. When it came out in 96 it was a ground up redesign from the previous oil-cooled beam-framed GSX-R that was long overdue a revamp. I've wanted an SRAD 750 for a few years because I like what they represented. Before the now 600 and 1,000cc homologation classes, 750 was the top tier with Honda spending a lot of money developing the RVF750 and Yamaha's R7 which neither I could afford with prices going sky-high long ago. Whilst most manufacturers did the same, developing exotic projects Suzuki said "Let's just use the SRAD 750, we've been making them for ages and they're pretty good" whist claiming 4 world titles. All(?) manufacturers have long stopped making 750 super bikes but Suzuki still sells the GSX-R750, which to me makes a lot of sense on the road and track. It's an underdog that was lighter than the 600s of the day and arguably faster than the 1,000cc Honda Fireblade whilst doing it for a lower asking price.

    The RSV on the other hand feels extremely special to look at and ride. The v-twin motor has bags of torque and is a big grizzly bear of a motorcycle. It's faster than the SRAD but feels effortless (& maybe slower) with instant torque, acceleration and the gravelly soundtrack to match. I think of the SRAD as turbo charged and the RSV as supercharged. Despite the stereotypes of Italian build quality it's exceptionally well made, the components look like jewellery compared and was manufactured just before Piaggio took over and the accountants got involved. Ironically though a lot of gen 2 owners admit build quality was better with the earlier (gen 2) bikes but they can be plagued with gremlins, that admittedly can be sorted, so swings and roundabouts. Both are physically crippling after more than 3hrs but the RSV is bigger and allows you to stretch your torso a bit more.

    Riding the SRAD you feel a bit of an oik but your heart is racing from the powerband whereas the RSV makes you feel like a sophisticated oik provoking more waves and smiles. In terms of cornering too the strategy with the Aprilia is to keep it in a higher gear with the torque pushing you around, with the primitive slipper clutch you don't want to lock-up the back wheel as that's one way to fill your pants with Sheppard's pie.

  • In flooring news the concrete has been ground and the levelling compound is down. I just need to remember to not go into the garage then walk it all around the house. The weather looks to be deteriorating this week so will see how progress goes but fingers crossed the epoxy should be laid in the next few days.

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  • Looks like a great space, very jealous! Is that Welland Viaduct on the previous page?
    Severe lack of pedal power for a bike forum though...

  • Good spot, yes that is in Welwyn. We're an eclectic bunch I guess.

  • @IamNotACrook is referring to Welland Viaduct up near Corby.

    Assume your photo is Digswell Viaduct nr Welwyn... I usually only see the view from the train.

  • The levelling compound is now dry and the epoxy primer has dried overnight too, today the 2 part epoxy resin will be laid with a light anti-slip coating mixed in. Bit of a slow process working a few hours each day then revisiting, but sure it will be worth it in the end. Sorry guys I won't be going for a turquoise high sparkle Instagram finish.

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  • Looking good!

    Did you grind the floor yourself? If so what did you use?

  • I thought long and hard about doing this myself but the more I researched it suggested it's all in the prep, so didn't want to risk doing it twice. That and the quote I got was very competitive. The grinding was done with an industrial hand grinder as opposed to something upright. After inspecting the floor this morning turns out it's not quite fully cured so the final epoxy coat will be going down tomorrow now, just to be safe.

  • I'm in the thinking long and hard thinking phase!

    I have a decent sized garage with a dusty concrete floor, it is nice and level, but where the walls have been rendered a load of crap has been left round the edges that needs grinding off, and really don't fancy it myself...

  • If I wanted something to keep the dust down as a temporary measure then I'd just PVA it and maybe use some old carpet as a posh stop-gap. It would cost next to nothing. If the eventual plan was to epoxy/polyurethane resin then you'd have to grind the floor anyway which would take up the PVA.

  • It's not too bad, and it is actually mainly used as a garage, i.e. somewhere to park the cars, so dust isn't a major issue, just would be nicer if it look better

  • So the primer was dry enough today after an extra night for the epoxy resin to go down. The manufacturer recommends 7 days for it to fully cure so will try and stick to that before moving anything in.

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  • That looks so nice. Great job. Now get some oil stains and tyre marks on it!

  • Garage burnout?

  • Resisted going for a ride on my day off but instead ferried things back into the garage as the epoxy resin had fully settled. I'm over the moon with the results and feels like a long time coming after picturing something similar whilst saving for the house. Yeah totally worth it. Put up the shelf too and added a strategic lip to stops things falling off. It just needs some prints on the wall and eventually some bigger tools to compliment the tarty garage vibez.

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  • All sorts of rad. Reckon you’re in need of one of those lifts. They make life so so much easier. Also. Tool wall man.
    Congrats though. Must be chuffed.

  • I've been thinking about an Abba Skylift actually, eventually. Takes up a lot less space than a 'proper' lift. Moving the tool chest around on the new floor was a revelation so imagine the Skylift would work great. Will think about a pegboard, would like storage under a new longer workbench that spans the wall and increasing floorspace is definitely a good thing.

  • Very envious.

    Properly nice garage.

  • Looking great!!

  • I have regular pegboard (just drilled hardboard) but have looked at the painted steel stuff with a bit of storage lust.

  • Looks ace @jambon I've got proper garage envy. Looking forward to continued updates on the garage and the bikes.

  • First job in the new garage is sort the lever wobble when applying the front brake. Drilled out and replaced a couple of disc bobbins, and hey presto no more judder.

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  • Sunny test ride confirmed the lever wobble is now gone.

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  • Just realised I never responded to this in-depth analysis. Its funny but I didn't figure that the RSV was so close in age. I think in my mind I associate the Aprilia with being a much newer bike that this gen Gixxer. Nice that they have such different manners between them despite both being superbikes.

    The more I read on this, the more I'd quite like to have a go at a project, more to tinker than to ride. Although both my parents rode bikes when they were younger, they've always dissuaded me from having one. My uncle however has always had at least one bike. Mainly Ducati's but he's had Blackbirds, 'Busas and an RSV Mille Factory. He's given up riding pretty much now but still has his absolutely mint 851 which will probably sit in the corner of his garage for the rest of his days.

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Just a garage

Posted by Avatar for jambon @jambon