So I got a shop to clean the bike up immediately after buying it, and took it out for some crusin’. Rode around for about 2 weeks or so, and noticed some increasingly random problems accelerating. It got to the point where I was scared to ride it, since I couldn’t accelerate when I might have really needed to. Took it back into the shop with the problem. I was told it was probably gunk in a carb, and that they’d make sure it was all cleaned.
During this time, I was in the process of moving. I had to take the bike from the shop before they were done, and move it with me to where I am now. It went back into a different local shop once the move was complete. Then began a crazy ping pong match of me getting the bike back in a declared ‘fixed!’ state, only to find out the problem was still there, and having to take it back. This went over the course of an entire summer, when I decided to take it away and store it for winter.
This summer, I took it back out of storage, and back into the shop it went. My specific request: “I don’t want it back until it runs properly, and is verified.” Simple enough for a repair shop, I’d think. *4 MONTHS* later, I realize I might never get it back, and so I go to find out what is taking so long. They have no paperwork on me or the bike, even though this is the 2nd summer they’ve had it. They can’t tell me what has been worked on. They can’t tell me who was working on it. They can’t tell me any useful information whatsoever. The only silver lining out of this was that they couldn’t charge me, either. What a colossal waste of time.
Thoroughly pissed off now, I take it home, and start tinkering. Please bear in mind that I have nothing that even vaguely resembles automotive intelligence. This was tinkering out of desperation. I take the gas tank off, drain it, put a bunch of nuts and bolts in there, and start shaking like mad. I end up removing over 2 pounds of rust from that tank. Went out to buy some chemical cleaning agents for it, and went to work. It actually looks like metal inside the tank now. Amazing. Gave it a good chemical bath and coating, and am probably going to put it all back together and test it out tonight... just in time for winter, again. Sigh.
If this works... I probably will learn how to take care of the thing myself, since I can’t trust 2 separate repair shops to check for rust in the tank before taking apart and cleaning an engine. Is it just me, or does that seem just like common sense?
Next step is to get the tank painted. I guess it’s a good thing I didn’t give a rat’s ass about the paint job - I wasn’t very careful with the chemical bath, and I ended up utterly destroying the paint as it exists now.
Oh well. I just want functional right now... I’ll worry about pretty later. Maybe after owning a bike for 2 years, I’ll actually get to ride it soon without fearing for my life.