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Thursday, August 14, 2008

Royal Oilfield slur stains Enfield's reputation

"How is it?" Wes Scott asked when I brought my 1999 Bullet back to his Fort Lauderdale shop for its 500-mile checkup after an engine rebuild.

"Great!" I answered. "But let me show you my pants."

I held up the pair of coveralls I'd been wearing, the right leg from the knee down blackened with oil.

"You're wearing the wrong color pants," Wes said. "You should be wearing oil colored pants."

Stories abound about British motorcycles leaking, especially Royal Enfields. It's part of the "charm" of old motorcycles.

The story goes that the last thing to rust on a British motorcycle is anything behind the motor, because it's bathed in oil.

I've heard that Triumph eventually made its motor cases in halves that split horizontally, so there wasn't a seam at the bottom that could possibly leak.

Over the years Wes has cured most of the leaks from my 1999 Bullet and hopefully a little tightening will be all it needs this time in the shop. Wes Scott's Fort Lauderdale motorcycle repair shop specializes in old British iron: Triumphs, Nortons, BSAs and, lucky for me, Royal Enfields

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