Tuesday, August 26, 2008


"Is that a diesel motorcycle sir" Thought it odd hearing those words coming from the young gas attendant fella at a Shell station in Goderich Ontario a few days ago. I had just rolled in on my motorcycle & topped up my gas tank. I generally run regular gas in the bike & about every 4th tank or so I fill it up with Premium. To-day I decided on premium, so by-passed the regular nozzle & without looking, reached for the premium nozzle on the other side of the pump & filled er up!! I said to the young fellow, "no, this is a gas motorcycle, to which he kindly replied, "well, you just filled up your motorcycle with diesel fuel......sir." ARRRRGGGGHHHHHH!!!! There it was, right on the pump beside me....DIESEL. Well, to say I could feel my stomach sliding right out from under me would be putting it mildly. What a huge feeling of frustration & anger I had with myself. (not to mention embarrassment) Just taking things for granted & not paying attention to what I was doing again!!!!
Wheeled the bike around the corner of the garage, slunk out of sight & got the owner's manual out of the saddle bag. Tried to find out if there was some kind of a gas tank drain valve. Couldn't find anything. Even got down on the ground & had a close look for some kinda valve or something. Suddenly dawned on me that if I had a hose I could probably siphon the diesel fuel out right out of the tank. No hose at the gas bar so walked across the large parking lot to a Canadian Tire store at the far corner. Got me a siphon hose with a plunger thingy on it & headed back. The young fellow at the gas bar fetched me a big white 5 gallon plastic pail. The siphon didn't work well because the siphon part was a solid plastic tube so wouldn't bend well to get down into & around the bottom of the bikes tank. Back to Canadian Tire for a second time & got a 3' section of flexible gas rubber hose. Should have done that in the first place because this hose worked perfect except for one little thing. No suction plunger on this one so I had to use my mouth to start the diesel fuel flowing. Diesel fuel in my mouth, up my nose, in my beard down my chin, on my pants & all over my shoes. The bucket I was draining it into tipped over at one point so I had quite a mess of diesel fuel going on all over the place. Moved the hose around in the tank making sure I got as much fuel out as possible & by the time I was done I had about 3 gallons of diesel fuel in the 5 gallon plastic pail. Probably another half gallon on the ground & another half gallon on me!! Pushed the bike back out to the gas island, DOUBLE CHECKED THE GAS PUMP & re-filled my tank with V-Power Premium....GAS!! This whole ordeal lasted about 40 minutes but luckily ended well. If that young sharp eyed gas attendant hadn't noticed my mistake I would have rode out of there with a tank full of diesel fuel & promptly ruined my motorcycle engine. That would have been a major repair!! I thanked him & insisted he take $20. Probably should have given him another ten for not laughing at me & calling me a dummy. He didn't want to accept the $20 but I pulled rank on him using my superior age factor. Truly a nice kid. Next stop was the car wash to hose down the diesel infested motorcycle & the last stop of the day was home to hose down the diesel infested & somewhat embarrassed human!!!!


  1. Wow, Al, narrow miss there! Lucky the attendant was watching. That's pretty rare!

  2. So glad there was someone there to call your attention to it...a month or so ago my youngest daughter (30), filled up her all but new mini-van with diesel and drove it till it died, not far down the road. They anticipated a $10k bill but were lucky that more damage wasn't done than expected and the dealer managed to get the warranty to cover it. Phew! IT happens.....

  3. Wow. Lucky catch by the attendant. I've done just the opposite and dumped gasoline into my diesel tractor. I realized what I did before starting the tractor. personally, I don't think the diesel would have ruined the engine because I think it would have acted more like a lubricant. You would have been tearing the carb(s) apart to clean them at the least.

  4. Al...Al...Al...always enjoy your adventures...just keep them coming

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