Well now. This Spring I decided to get the Bonneville back on the road. I've been meaning to do this for a couple years, but lacked the inspiration and enthusiasm to actually lift a finger to the job. I'd done a lot of tinkering with it in the past, but failed to end up with a reliable bike, and I just ran out of patience with it and moved (with some nagging pangs of guilt) on.
Due to a recent influx of cash on my Volvo Awards Visa card, I decided it was time to release the guilt with the help of the guys down the road at Classic Bike Exchange. Actually, I started the releasing process by having Charlie spend an hour or so trying to figure out the wiring. He got it to the point that we had spark, and in fact got it running, which was very encouraging. Only problem was, the next time I tried to start it, it wouldn't stay running long enough to get down the driveway. We had identified a problem with the positive ground, but didn't know what the solution was.
It was at this point that Charlie encouraged (begged?) me to borrow his trailer and get the beast down to CBE to have them replace the wiring harness, which clearly needed to be done. I dropped it off, got some evaluation and mental therapy time with one of their councilors, and left it in their care for a week. The guys at CBE are willing to work on bikes at their hourly rate, but they also have a policy of allowing customers to use their shop and work on their bikes at a very reasonable shop rate, with some expert consultation when needed. So once they had the harness installed, they were pretty confident that the bike would be reliable and that I could take over. So I went down there and spent some quality time installing turn signals and learning the British way with electrical connections.
The total operation was a success, and I was able to ride it out of the shop with a current State Inspection sticker.
I've done a couple rides on it now, and I'm optimistic that it will in fact be a reliable daily ride!