Red Dog and Me

This is an on-going dialog between me and a certain motor scooter, namely a 2009 Piaggio MP3 500 that came to live with me in October of 2009. I've named the scooter Red Dog and as yet have not determined its gender. In the past when I've named boats, bikes, and other like characters I've thought of them as feminine due to their behavior characteristics. Red Dog I'm not so sure about...we'll see. Update: OK, Red Dog's a girl...with an attitude

Friday, November 6, 2009

Nov 6, 2009 The Electric Vest Controller Arrives

Around 1:30pm this afternoon I told Linda I was going to have a lie-down aka power nap until the FedEx gal arrived. The digital controller for my electric vest was due to arrive today sometime and until then there wasn’t a whole lot I could do to Red Dog. At precisely the moment I made that statement both dogs started raising heck which is their way of announcing the arrival of someone at our gate.
The FedEx gal is a really nice lady but she has this thing about our collie Chance and prefers to not enter our place. I admit he raises cane and his bark is super loud plus he gets all puffed up and scary looking. The other delivery people seem to be able to deal with him or at least they try but she’s afraid of him and maybe I don’t blame her. In any event I didn’t get my lie-down as the shipment had arrived and I was happy to see it.

I expected the installation to go smoothly as I’ve done them before and it wasn’t new territory for me. The biggest issue was where and how to locate the controller and the plug-in the vest uses to attach its cable to. In the past I’ve located the plug-in on the right side of the bike just below my leg so there was a natural fall towards it. The plug-in itself just sort of dangled out of the side frame which was convenient to use and if I forgot to unplug when I dismounted it would just pull free without breaking anything.
Red Dog’s makers have got this thing about covering every possible wiring route up with plastic fairing and getting a control wire from the front of the scooter to the back by my leg was going to be a pain in the butt so I tried to come up with an alternate location that would be both convenient and easy to install. I finally decided it would be a simple matter to mount the controller on the handlebars using Ram Mounts that I already had on hand in my junk box. This turned out to work just fine and I was able to route the plug-in so that it hung out of the center of the handlebar housing. This will ensure an easy connect/disconnect without any damage issues should I forget to unplug.
I finished the job a little after dark and since I’ve never ridden Red Dog at night I rode down to the mail box, then up 101 to the Game Park which is about ¼ mile up the road and back. The heated grips were a welcome luxury and if I had worn the vest it would have been also. At the same time I was able to get a feel for the lighting and it seems more than adequate, especially the low beams. The bright beams are two little spotlight things and they also perform nicely.

Busy, busy....

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