Jim & Reba Berry
District Educators

My Gold Wing



Punxsutawney Phil did not see his shadow back on February 2, so spring is just around the corner.  It will be riding season soon!  Because we had a GWRRA Trike and Trailer Course in late February, and I hadn’t ridden but 1 day in the last 4 months, I felt it necessary to give the trike the ole once over.  I used the new N17, Vehicle Inspection Sheet which was real easy to follow and discovered I had a tail light out.  So, I looked up a video on You Tube (Google is our friend) and specifically heard the warning to be very careful when removing the nuts that held the tail light assembly in place.  The whole mechanism is plastic and over time becomes very brittle. I got it changed successfully and completed the vehicle check list.  Why were there 2 lines for front tire psi and 3 for rear tire psi?  Because this is an all vehicle check list and some trikes now have 2 front wheels and some add-on kits have 3 in the rear.  

While attending the rider course conducted by Beverly and Merlin Mayon, we discussed the Three P’s.  Proper You, Proper Gear and Proper Equipment.  This encouraged me to make plans for what I now call my “Goldwing Inventory”, to be conducted each winter.  Here is what I will be inventorying:

Proper Me - Have I had my annual physical?  How are my meds working for me?  Am I in good condition to ride both mentally and physically?  If not, see my doctor.

Proper Gear - Starting from the top down, does my helmet fit properly?  Is it in date?  Is it damaged in any way?  Do all its parts work properly?  Are my riding jacket, gloves and pants in good repair and as every Gold Winger must ask, do they still fit? What about those boots?  Did I put them away wet and now they are moldy?  Check the soles to see if I have any worn spots that may cause footing issues.  Are all the parts to my cooling gear, wet weather gear and cold weather gear there?  Can I find all those heated gear controllers?

Proper Equipment - Walking my way from front to back:  Do the tires have adequate tread depth and are they free of cracks? What the manufacture’s date of the tire (think about replacing it if it is over 5 years)? Is the front fender securely in place and not cracked?  Is the windshield securely in place and not causing any visual problems? Are my air wings secure and not cracked? I wouldn’t want one of them flying up and hitting me in the face. The same applies to all those gizmos I have attached to my handle bar area (phone holder, cup holder, gps mount, etc.).  How are my seats, backrest and arm rests? Those things get loose all the time and at the most inopportune time.  Make sure the luggage rack on the trunk is secure and that all trunk and saddlebag latches are working properly.  What about the rubber seals.  A leaking trunk is always a nightmare.  Now I can get Reba to slide under the bike and check out that trailer hitch!  I need to do basically the same things to my trailer.

These are just some of the items I will be looking for.  There are always loose nuts and connections to be tightened, replaced or sealed.  Use the N17 as well.  Make a prioritized punch list.  Some items I can fix, others I might need to take to a professional.  And, I can make a shopping list for rallies and Wing Ding shopping.

Now, shouldn’t that big summer ride be more pleasant?


Reba and Jim Berry

Louisiana District Educators