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I bought a device off a guy that is known as “Jack’s O2 Mod“.  This thing is a resistor connected to a couple of couplers.  It plugs in line between the O2 sensor and the fuel management system.  What it does is “fool” the computer into thinking the mix needs to run a little richer.  In one of the first posts I put up about the 13o0 I covered where the bike is setup to run lean at idle or low throttle for emission purposes.  This shouldn’t cause any damage, but it’s not the ideal situation as far as heat and performance is concerned.

The page I linked goes in to some detail about how to make the mod yourself for around a buck.  My problem is I solder like a 2 year old.  I also don’t want to make changes to the bike that can’t be backed out.  If I splice into the wires…it’s pretty permanent.  I contacted a guy that has commercialized the finished contraption and he has stopped making them.  He was putting them together and sold them for 50 bucks.  I put a post on a 1300 message board to see if anyone had one they wanted to part with.  A guy answered me, and we made the deal for 30 bucks shipped.  I received it the other day, took about 5 min to connect and fired the bike up.  The mod does exactly what it advertises it does…it clearly richens up the mix at the lower throttle settings.

It’s tough to explain why this little adjustment is needed on a bike unless you ride.  Even then, some guys don’t put in the little bit of effort to improve the performance of their bikes.  I don’t get it.  It gives me a little bit more power at the lower end of the first couple of gears..which in town and on the gravel make quite a bit of difference.  Also, spending 30 bucks here will allow me to put pipes and another intake on the bike before I have to install a new fuel management system.

I got a bit of time to work on the squeak in the rear end.  I assumed it was from the belt being too tight.  To be able to adjust it, I had to take off the muffler, loosen the rear brake caliper, and loosen the axel nut.  Then I had to adjust the tension bolts on each side of the wheel.  This sounds like a little bit of effort, and for my first time taking it apart it didn’t go too bad.  I loosened it up quite a bit, because I assumed my weight would tighten up the belt when I sat down.  I set the belt and had the kid check the tension when I was sitting on the bike…incredibly loose…too loose in my estimation, but I still took it for a little test run.  It was clear on the driveway that I had done more harm than good.  Rain was coming in so I had to put things away for the night.

The next day pulling things apart, adjusting the belt and putting things back together took about 15min….the first night it took around an hour.  I tightened the belt up quite a bit and took a swing around.  I had thought initially the noise was gone, but towards the end of my ride the noise came back.  I checked the belt and it is still a bit looser than the mfg suggests.  I’ll tighten it up some tomorrow morning.  I am hoping to put a couple hundred miles on the bike…so maybe I’ll wait till after I get back.

I ran in to a guy at the bar tonight that rides a Stratoliner.  That bike is a bit bigger than the 1300.  Weight wise it has about 200lbs, it has a higher center of gravity and about 500cc’s more displacement.  I had thought pretty hard about looking for one of those, but I had my doubts about how it would handle on the gravel.  The guy I spoke with said it is not fun to ride on the dirt roads.  I think I could probably get used to it, but I’m glad I decided to go with the 1300 instead of something quite a bit bigger out of the gate.  Maybe down the line I’ll get something bigger…but we’ll see.

The last bit of maintenance I’ll have to do, that the previous owner clearly didn’t, is to adjust the valves.  The yamahas get a pretty good “tick tick tick” sound to them after awhile.  I called a dealer to see what they would charge to do it, I figured if it was around 200 bucks I would consider it.  I’ve looked in to the job and the first time I do it I’m expecting to take around 10ish hours.  After that first time I expect to do it faster…but while I’m figuring things out it will take more time.  They quoted me north of 500 bucks to do it.  For that price I’ll take care of it myself.  Man, I don’t see how guys own these things without doing their own wrenching.  Outside of changing tires and major engine work…I’m confident I can take care of whatever is going on.  Hopefully I don’t have a serious problem where I have to test that though.

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