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Sometimes I think that I would like to be a professional bike builder, or maybe just a jack of all trades. While I like to think that I can do most things right when given the opportunity sometimes it’s easier to ask for help from someone who knows what they are doing. That man is Josh “Karate” and we held another round of “dojo after dark” which is basically just hanging at the dojo making Josh help me with things. Yesterday’s project was installing the British Customs air injection removal kit in my new Triumph Scrambler, which in theory should cut out most of the overrun backfiring and smooth out throttle response.  Eventually it did, but not after some googling and figuring out that my original dealer I wrote about dropped their Triumph franchise and maybe I see why now.

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So we started tearing down the bike by removing the seat and tanking off the tank most of the way. We didn’t want to undo the fuel lines so we just slide the tank to the side and strapped it down so it would go slip sliding away.

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We followed along with BonnieCafe who does an excellent job explaining the process which in total only took about 35 minutes. After we had the tank off we Josh started to remove the tubing that pumps air into the motor. This basically is a system used to help with the emission, but when you add the free flowing Arrow exhaust it can cause major overrun backfiring and cause the bike to be very “lurchy” on the bottom end.

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So once those ports are removed the kit allows you to plug the air box and fitting directly into the motor, and completely remove the pump that pushes that air into the motor.

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We buttoned it all back up and I watched as Josh put all this tools away because if I were to try and do this he would just move them all again anyways…

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So I took off on the bike and everything seemed good. I didn’t notice a big difference until I later was riding and the bike seemed to be almost worse. When I got home I spent some time on the google machine and realized that the bike never had the adaptation procedure completed after the dealer remapped the bike. Now I’m guessing the service department isn’t going home every night and looking at best practices for tuning these bikes, but you think they should have known this major step right? Well after I let the bike re-adjust and idle for 15 minutes I took off for another cruise. That was it. Solved. All my issues and loss of sleep out the window (at least for now). It road like how I imagined it should. Loud and precise with every blip of the throttle. I was hooked so I went for another rip around.

Once everything was all sorted out and happy I merged onto the highway heading directly into the setting Sun over the downtown skyline and I knew that something special had happened. Like a 17 year old over-privileged girl at Coachella thinking she has found the alignment of the moons, or one of those weird Avatar creatures connecting their hair to those flying beasts, the motorcycle and I had become one. Euphoric. It was a combination of waiting, way too much money and finally the sensation of happiness.

– El Fin