He was taking the air box apart to show me how to get at the filter; and when he got the cap off we saw it was full of gunk, mostly shredded paper towel. He grabbed a big pair of hemostats and removed the mouse nest, then pulled the filter and made sure it was clean before vacuuming out the remains of the nest from the box.
The battery in there is deader than disco, though he reports that he did get it to crank a couple of times before he went to bed tonight. Nonetheless I'm going to O'Reilly's tomorrow and buying this battery which is an exact replacement.
It's supposed to rain a lot tomorrow and Saturday, of course. Worst case he and I will make arrangements for me to pick the thing up on the first non-rainy day--we discussed such in a preliminary fashion this evening--and in any event we'll have to get the spare parts over here, too, but those'll just go in the back of the Jeep. No problem.
I can understand Og's sadness at parting with the motorcycle. But, he pointed out, the money I'm paying him for the bike will quite nicely cover the cost of all the other parts needed to build his AR-15. I am not paying a lot for the thing--$400 with the helmet--but there's a kit he can get for $399 that includes everything but the lower. Then he can assemble it and shoot the thing, and replace parts as he decides they need it.
Win-win: he gets the dough to finish one of his gun projects, and I get a kickass deal on a kickass motorcycle. "Some assembly required", and so what?
* * *
One thing we talked about on Saturday was the fact that I could rebuild the spare engine into a functional replacement.
...and then talk wandered over to the concept of a three-wheeled go-kart, with a fat-ass drag slick in back. Actually, I think a bigass 50-series drag radial would do (like you see on the doorslammers, or "outlaw" class cars). Last night I caught myself thinking about how to mount the axle and run the brake line for the rear brake. Heh. And a single swingarm would be easy to construct; use a single coilover for the shock. Not a problem.
The front suspension would be simple: just get a Beetle front axle. (The old kind, with the torsion springs, not the Super Beetle's MacPherson strut suspension.) Make the thing a single seater with pedals for clutch, brake, and accelerator; have a single shift lever. Use the same chain the motorcycle uses.
The only problem is, how the hell do you back up? Since it's a motorcycle engine and transmission, there is no reverse gear. If you need to back up, do you have to get out and push the thing backwards? That'd be a royal pain!
Then I thought, "electric motor"!
It'd be child's play--I mean, if you're already building a freakin' trike--to mount a small traction motor such that it had a sprocket that meshed with the drive chain. When there's no current, it spins freely; supply current and it'll move the thing. All you need is a switch to turn it on and a relay to control the massive flow of juice; but a single car battery will provide enough oomph to back out of a parking spot or whatever.
Best part: since it's a motorcycle motor, it counts as a motorcycle. You can register and plate the thing, and drive it on the road. (As long as you have headlights etc; and why wouldn't you? After building a custom frame, adding electrical accessories is an incremental cost!)
Other factor: if you got tired of the two-piston GS450 engine, you could always go find yourself a GS850 engine and mount it. The two engines fit the same motorcycle frame, so mounting the bigger four-banger on the trike frame would be easy-pasy.
...possible for me to do this, yes. Likely, no.
* * *
There was something else I was going to talk about, and I thought, "I'll surf to the appropriate site after I check the Fiero forum...." and by the time I was done with the Fiero forum I'd forgotten all about it.
Oh well; I've got things I want to get done before bed, so I'd better go do 'em.