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December 2017 President's Corner

by Jack Klauschie, RCBPREZ

Is it really December?  

As I wade through mostly empty Christmas storage bins where Lynell’s car used to be parked in the garage, I see my 1993 ATK 605 at the far side of the garage, sadly with cob webs I brushed off. I bought this bike three years ago (could be four) as a winter “project.” While the bike did need considerable TLC, I probably could have gotten it running with a new battery and carb cleaning. The fact the front brake and other niceties didn’t work was a minor – aaah inconvenience. I actually got about 60-70% of the restoration done when I stupidly injured my back eventually requiring surgery.

Y’all probably are wondering where the hell is this going. Don’t worry. I’m not fishing for sympathy. I know there will be none from this group.

Part of me was thinking about what still must be done to finish the bike. Mostly, I was reflecting on the hours already spent tending to the needs of this bike, something I miss.

Around the same time, I read Brook Reams article in the November issue of BMW On magazine about his restoration work on a R100RS. What I was feeling about the work on that old ATK came into focus so I will paraphrase Brook Reams words. This was real work with things that are not influenced by what me or anyone else might say. Working “hard” or fast did not always yield results. Patience, thoughtfulness, creativity and perseverance did provide solutions for those pieces which no longer can be obtained. Becoming completely attentive to the work at hand at a piece-by-piece pace was “hands on therapy.” No doubt being able to ride the ATK will be rewarding, but the therapeutic benefits of the work itself is reward enough.  

If you, like Brook Reams and me, could benefit from slowing down and emptying your mind of everything except for the tool and part in your hand, take on a project at least until we can ride regularly again in the spring.         

I made a commitment to myself to have hands on therapy after the holidays. Hope to see you soon on an ATK.

Happy Holidays? Cheers!

Jack

Thoughts / Suggestions / Insults / Welcomed / Appreciated