Nobody in the world is more relieved I have actually been successful in finding a new bike than those MCN staff who sit closest to me at work.
No longer do they have to look at what I have just found on MCN Bikemart and pretend to be interested. Or listen to me legitimising why I could ‘actually save money’ by buying something. The conversations are now over; I’ve spent my money, there’s no more left in the bank as I am now the proud (and skint) owner of a 1998 Honda CBR600F.
Having been on the lookout for another bike for a while, actually finding one that managed to tick all of the boxes I needed took me by surprise. But three weeks ago I headed in the MCN van to Romford in Essex to see Mike Adlington at Honda dealer Johns of Romford (01708-746293), www.johnsofromford.co.uk - to hand over £2200 for a 1998 S-reg model with just one owner and 7000 miles on the clock. Johns of Romford has been voted by Ride Magazine readers as the favourite dealer in the Greater London area and the friendliness of the staff and the boss was clear to see why.
Despite the number of steel-framed Honda CBR600Fs sold in this country up until it became the alloy framed version in 1999, trying to find a straight, original and decent condition one proved to be harder than I thought.
I appreciate people love to make a bike their own but the number of absolute rotters out there took me by surprise. The choice between a high mileage but cheaper one and a lower mileage and more expensive one was clear – I wanted something that was original and in decent condition and was prepared to pay a little more.
My new bike is now at home in the garage having had the original specification Michelin Macadam 90s taken off and replaced with the brand new Michelin Pilot Pure. Johns of Romford changed the tyres for me and said the others had been on so long it was a real struggle to get them off the rims as they had gone so hard.
Insurance was simply a case of adding another bike to my policy I already had for my 1992 Suzuki RGV250 and cost £60 comprehensive for a year.
There are a few things I am going to do to the CBR600F to give a bit of a freshen up. The original brake lines are a bit crusty so a set of Hel braided lines (www.h-e-l.co.uk) and some SBS brake pads are going on. As I am going to use the bike as much as possible a Scottoiler eSystem chain oiler is also on order (www.scottoiler.com). I’ve used a Scottoiler in the past and they are brilliant. The eSystem uses battery power rather than vacuum power to keep the chain nicely lubed.
Staff bike blogs | Honda CBR600F blog