The beers (Vale Wychert - a fine ale) were consumed in the evening, but next morning we had to sort out his bike so he could get home again. The wiring from the start switch (which also includes a kill switch) had completely welded themselves together. Why? Isn't it odd that after more than 30 years of existence, this wiring just said 'fuck it, I'm going to burn', and it did. Adam had a spare at home, but he had to get home first, so we cleaned, bodged and did a neat little wiring job to plug the switchgear in. Sadly, at he last moment, the two wires going into the switch block decided they too wanted to self-destruct, and they just came out. And could we find how they went back in? No. We tried for an hour, the two of us, with all the tools necessary available to us, but we failed. Gave up. The little, stupid, simple, Italian lego-bright switch defeated us. It sat there laughing at us in all its colour and glory.
So he couldn't start the bike from the switch. Instead we rigged up an insulated wire, cable tied it to his mirror, and off he went. Our plans to go out for a ride together were spoiled as we'd spent all morning trying to fix his bike instead.
Come to think of it, every time I see him we end up fixing (or not as it seems) HIS bike...
Whenever non-Italian bike owning people, and people who haven't owned older Guzzis in particular, have wheeled out the old cliche' "yeah, Italian electrics are crap", I've always been a little defensive and and counter-replied, "no, the components are good, it's just the wiring between them that doesn't work". But after seeing this type of meltdown like this more than a few times now, maybe I'm more of an opinion that Italian electrics really are shit. Or maybe it's just us that we're shit mechanics?