Blog: October 3. Doohickey demystified

It’s Sunday afternoon and I’ve been out on the mountain bike with a few industry people. What I thought was a cramp in my leg is starting to feel like it’s something more serious, but I’ll see what it’s like when it’s cooled down properly.

Meanwhile, the reason I’ve been pedalling about the forest is a bit of a long story.

It started with a visit to Yamaha Motor Australia this week for work. I had to photograph a couple of bikes, and, as always, that meant tagging up with Sean ‘Geez’ Goldhawk. Sean’s a good bloke and a very enthusiastic motorcyclist, and he’s always a lot of fun. One of the bikes was built by Peter ‘Mister Clean’ Payne, another nice bloke, and he showed up as we were preparing the shoot. Peter wanted to be sure the luggage had the correct dimensions it would have if he were actually using it. This required finding and inserting the correct amounts of paper and then squashing to ensure the shape was right. Sean was happy to just stuff paper in there until it ‘looked full’, but that’s not how Peter Payne does things.

It was hilarious.

While paper was being stuffed and external dimensions measured, Sean mentioned he’d be in Bellingen on Saturday for ‘the wedding’, and his new other half, being an Australian mountain-bike champion, was keen to go for a ride around Cows With Guns, the MTB park in Bongil State Forest. One thing led to another and we agreed to meet and go for a pushy ride.

‘The wedding’ was for Steve Smith, owner of, and Steve was kind enough to invite me as well.

So there we were, in the glorious sunshine at Bello, when who do I see? Greg Yager, ‘TB’, the top man at Then I turned around and saw Amy Harburg, a BMW Trophy Australian representative.

Before we knew it, Greg Yager’s two sons were included in the MTB ride as well.

It was funny us all seeing each other out of work.

When I meet Greg Yager and Sean Goldhawk for work, this is what they look like. Here’s Sean…

seangoldhawk001Here’s Greg…

yamahawr250roldbull040Here’s what we look like at a wedding…

stevesmithwedding_002Greg got the top podium position for wearing a tie.

Here’s what Amy Harburg normally looks like when I see her for work…

bmwsafarienduro2016_200Here’s how she looks at a wedding…

stevesmithwedding_003Amy gets top spot on the podium for ‘scrubbing up nicely’.

The other thing I did while I was in Sydney was to drop in on Nick Dole.

I’ve been researching the Kawasaki KLR650 ‘doohickey’. I won’t bore you with details, because if you’re not a KLR owner it won’t interest you. If you are, you’ll be frothing to know what I found out and will buy the magazine, thus helping keep me in a job.

Anyway, I asked Nick to have a look at a doohickey on a well-used bike and give an expert opinion.

NIck exposed the part, gave it a good long look, removed it, replaced it, played with it, and told us what he thought. Greg Yager dropped in – Greg’s son work’s for Nick – and, as a mechanic with 30 years experience and a former KLR owner, he threw in a couple of interesting comments about the doohickey.

nickdoledoohickey_028Good job done.

But the bike was the KLR I’d had for work for a while, and which now belongs to ad-manager Mitch. Mitch has had a lot of trouble breaking off footpegs, and with the mounts re-inforced he’d now got hold of some new IMS ADV1 ‘pegs, and, seriously, these things are freaking huge.

Here’s an ADV1 and a ‘normal’ IMS ‘peg…

adv1vssimsstandardWith the ADV1s fitted they stuck out nearly as far as the ‘bars, and they’re a fair old chunk of metal. I reckoned if they were shaped with the correct curve they could generate some serious downforce. Or shaped the other way they’d offer big lift and maybe get a KLR airborne.

nickdoledoohickey_015I’m looking forward to the verdict on the comfort they offer.

I did ride the Dominator to the wedding at Bello, and I fitted the old IMS footpegs to my own KLR, so although I haven’t done any real riding, it’s been a good week.

Daylight saving is here and it’s a long weekend, so if my calf uncramps I may still get a run on the KLR this weekend.

Speaking of which, Pottsy – alias Secret Squirrel – said he’ll move the footpegs on my own KLR the same way he did on work’s bike. That made a huge difference to the comfort and handling of that KLR, so I’m looking forward to him wielding his angle grinder again some time soon.





  1. Hey Tom, I have a social crew that ride Cows and Piney alternately every Tue night at 530pm. Give me a buzz if you want to join us for a pedal.

  2. To think cows with guns used to be motorcycle track that we shared with pushy riders, they liked it so much motorcycles are now banned thanks to their forestry mates.

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