Thanks to the unparalleled customer service of Brammo (and the fact that it’s still under warranty) I only have about 30 hours until I can ride again.
I’m not sure if it is the result of something I did, or a defective gerbil in the works, but for whatever reason, the last time I turned on my bike it went, “Huh?” and refused to move. I did what any motorcycle owner and former Nintendo gamer would do in such a situation: I took out the key, blew on it, blew into the keyhole, and tried again. Nada.
I looked up the fault code displayed on the dash in my owner’s manual. “Contact Brammo Service.” I sent an email to Brammo and an hour and a half later my Brammo Tech replied with a list of nine tasks. The first three were pretty easy — basically turning the bike on in the usual way and looking for any additional fault codes. Step # 4 was a bit more challenging, and this is how she put it:
This step depends on how comfortable you are with taking off the body panels. If you feel comfortable and have your owner’s manual go to page 55 and follow the instructions. If you don’t feel comfortable taking them off let me know and I will talk to Danny about coming to diagnose and fix your bike.
If I was the least bit reluctant to dive in, I am certain that she would have come right out and handled it. But I have been on some other motorcycle forums and have been reading many stories about how folks have been getting their bikes ready for Spring by tuning up their carburetors, replacing spark plugs, flushing their coolant systems, and countless other tasks. Given that my Spring preparation would have consisted of dripping some lube on the chain and checking the tire pressure, I was eager to get my hands greasy.
Lesson one of taking off the body panels and diving into the innards of the Brammo Enertia is that your hands will not get greasy unless you touch the chain. About the only dirt I found inside the body panels was some road dust that had filtered in through the front grill that hides the horn and appears to be the main source of air that cools the motor. For the most part, the innards looked as clean as they looked in pictures taken during the manufacturing process.
I removed the body panels with ease, thanks to the clear instructions from the Brammo Owner’s Manual, and began unplugging cords and checking fuses.
Unfortunately, I got all the way to step number nine and had not found the problem. The Brammo Tech had ended step nine with these words:
If the fuses aren’t blown then the issue is one of two parts which are not the easiest to replace and we will go from there.
Although I was willing to try to install the parts myself, Brammo decided to send the tech to handle this. I strongly suspect that they did this following an assessment of my mechanical skills. This assessment, according to my wife, was spot on. “I think it’s great that they trusted you with the steps that required you to turn the key. Once I saw you pick up the allen wrench to remove the body panels, all bets were off.”
My mechanical ineptitude, notwithstanding, I’m glad that Brammo let me try my hand at being a shade tree mechanic. I’m even happier that they are sending out my favorite Tech, Jennifer, who has visited me a couple of other times. Although I’m not expecting anything in particular other than getting my bike fixed, she has, in the past, arrived bearing gifts.
She’s scheduled to show up on Thursday night. I am hopeful that my first ride of the month will take place that night. I’ll keep you updated, Brammo minions.