When I left Las Vegas this morning, it seemedlik it would be a nice easy 5 hour ride to Kaydee’s house. I’ve made this same trip a few times in the past and the road from Vegas to LA has become familiar. I had enough gas so I didn’t fill up in Vegas and instead, got onto I15 and headed out into the desert.
After about a hour and a half, I needed to get gas so I stopped in Baker CA to fill up. When i pulled up to the pumps, the bike seemed to be idling a bit lower than normal. I didn’t think much of it at the time but this was a sign of the trouble that was soon to come.
I filled up the tank and got a cup of coffee for the road and started to take off. All of the sudden, I lost power and heard a loud putt-putt-putt noise coming from the motor. I knew from the sound that i had just lost a spark plug. I coasted to stop in the Alien Beef Jerky parking lot and got off the bike. Sure enough, the spark plug was hanging from the plug wire and dangling alongside the motor. The motor and plug were pretty hot.
According to the signs along the road, Alien Beef Jerky is the best jerky in the universe so I took this as a sign and went inside and bought some beef jerky to kill time and let things cool down a little.
I started checking out the bike and was pleasantly surprised to see that there were still threads in the heads. I carefully put the plug back and tightened it down hoping for the best. I have no idea how the plug losened up and backed all the way out of the head. The plugs were changed in March so it’s probably gone about 7-8k miles since they were changed.
I cautiously headed back out into the desert and prayed that I’d be able to make it the remaining 180 miles without any more trouble.
Thankfully, I made it to Kaydee’s house without any more trouble. I need to take a better look at things to verify that the plug is fully seated. It’s hard to see down there so I’m still not 100% sure that the threads are completely undamaged. I’m not sure that I want to take the plug out because I’m afraid that it won’t go back in again. The bike does seem to be idling normally so maybe it’s OK. We’ll see.
I was lucky that this happened when and where it did. There was no traffic and I had a parking lot to work on the bike. If this had happened on the freeway at 75mph with lots of traffic and I had to fix it on the shoulder, it would have been much more of a problem.
States: NV, CA