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Old 04-05-2013, 12:52 AM   #46
ks7877's Avatar
Joined: Aug 2008
Oddometer: 12
Great ride report! As a fellow long-distance scooter rider, I am in awe of your ability to post and ride.

Best of luck on getting that muffler repaired. (By the way, I usually carry an extra exhaust gasket, drop cloth as well as camping gear )

Looking forward to more updates!!
scooter touring blog
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Old 04-05-2013, 04:40 AM   #47
TucsonStan OP
Joined: Feb 2013
Location: Tucson, Arizona
Oddometer: 49 Helix

Well, I've made it to Giddings but in sharing that, I'm getting way ahead of the myself. So, it's back to Alice, Texas.

It seems like I'm having a real problem getting an early start. Usually, I'm a early riser, a very early riser. After riding all day, I'm pretty bushed. I manage to get all the pictures load into the computer and then uploaded to SmugMug. For some reason, I write up the ride report at 4AM. Since I'm barely computer literate, I can't seem to get things wrapped up before 9AM. Today, I finally pulled out of the parking lot at the Days Inn in Alice, Texas at 9:37.

I took Hwy 281 north, intending to turn right at George West, onto Hwy 59. Highway 59 meets up with Hwy 77 just outside of Victoria and Hwy 77 runs straight north through Giddings.

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Old 04-05-2013, 06:17 AM   #48
TucsonStan OP
Joined: Feb 2013
Location: Tucson, Arizona
Oddometer: 49 Helix

I've been sitting in this McDonald's for the last 2 1/2 hours writing a great ride report with a very bad ending. Earlier, I pushed the wrong button and posted my unfinished ride report.

I had just finished everything and hit the post report button when McDonald's dumped me off line. I haven't checked to see if it made it online or not. If it didn't, I'll rewrite it from the library later today. If it made it, then this post makes me look pretty stupid.

Stay tuned as my trials and tribulations continue......
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Old 04-06-2013, 09:31 AM   #49
TucsonStan OP
Joined: Feb 2013
Location: Tucson, Arizona
Oddometer: 49 Helix

It seems like it's been a month or so since I left Alice, Texas when, in reality, it was only two days ago. I've tried several times to get this ride report written and posted. Hopefully, it'll be done today. Hopefully, the wi-fi works better here in the Giddings Public Library than it did yesterday at Mcdonalds.

Alice, Texas. I seems like I can never get an early start on the days riding. After riding all day, all I manage to get done at night is the pictures downloaded to the computer and then uploaded to SmugMug. I've always been an early riser so writing up the ride report in the morning works for me. Trouble is, it always takes so long. This morning, I don't pull out of the parking lot at the Days Inn until 9:37.

I had planned on taking some really backroads today but the developing muffler problem has me deciding to stay on a more main road route. I head north on hwy 281. Forty miles up the road is George West, Texas. There I pick up hwy 59. Hwy 59 would take me all the way to Houston but I'll turn north as soon as I see hwy 77.

In an earlier comment, bbjumper had asked about the bluebonnets. So far, I haven't seen any blubonnets. Now, I'm not saying that they weren't there but at 60mph, I hadn't sen any.

I had seen a lot of these.......

Quite a few of these.....

Ocassionally some of these....

And a couple of these....

Enough of these to pay for the entire trip....

and to my best friend, a few of these but I did NOT pick them up!

Just as I was thinking that bbjumper's friend must be pulling his leg about the bluebonnets, I top a hill and come across this.....

My little camera doesn't really do the bluebonnets justice in this picture.

At this point in the days ride I was north of Victoria, Texas. Maybe the bluebonnets south of Victoria had already come and gone. I don't know but from here on north, they were beautiful.

One of the things that I love about Texas is the county courthouses. The county courthouses of Texas all seem to have been built in the very center block of the county seat. Even if the county outgrows the courthouse and builds a new one, the old one is preserved where originally built. This is the courthouse in Beeville, Texas, county seat of Bee County.

And the clock in the tower even had the right time. Doesn't necessarily mean that the clock worked, I might have been there at just the right time. Even if the clock didn't work, it's still right twice a day!

As I rode along, I just couldn't resist taking a picture of this firehouse. I was wondering why they'd name a firehouse the Raisin Volunteer Fire Department.

Another mile or so, I found out. This is Raisin, Texas.

There were some comments earlier about small town speed limits and speed traps and such. I've pretty much learn that if you're riding into an area that has the least amount of build up, say an old falling down barn with a 30 year old tractor out front, you can pretty much bet that the speed through there is going to fall, probably drastically. In Raisin, Texas they have more than an old barn. There's a restaurant, a flea market and several other building but you can cruise through Raisin as the speed limit stays at 70. No speed traps in Raisin, Texas.

My ride into Giddings is uneventful but very loud. The muffler has vibrated itself to pieces. Where the crack was this morning, there is now a hole.

The rear muffler support has vibrated off the muffler completely. Notice the dark line just to lower right of the shock mounting bolt. It's not supposed to be there.

Here's a better picture.....

The swingarm is busted in half. That other piece of metal is the rear muffler support.

Since the swingarm is still on there, it's hard to tell that the swingarm bearings are also toast.

After assessing things, I decided to have the scooter taken to Greathouse Motorsports in Bryan, Texas. After the initial assessment, they're thinking that I might be able to get it back by next Saturday, 4-13-13. I'm hoping they're right. Working on my brother-in-law's house, the original reason for coming to Giddings, for a week is going to just about kill me.

If there's any thing new to report as the week progresses, I'll post and update. If not, I may not be back till after next weekend.
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Old 04-06-2013, 11:23 AM   #50
Joined: Apr 2013
Oddometer: 1
Sounds like a great trip

Sorry to here about the muffler problems. But better to have it happen heading east than West. For some reason getting the road early after multi day riding tends to be a problem...I had the same issue on my epic 21 day journey from Maine to california via Canada. I found the key was get off the road early each day (by 2pm), relax, grab an early good dinner and turn in by 8.

Ride safe..looking forward to your next post.
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Old 04-06-2013, 11:24 AM   #51
Brooktown Geezer
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Location: Fallbrook, CA
Oddometer: 496
Wow, that's a bad break. Keep us posted!
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Old 04-09-2013, 10:04 PM   #52
Studly Adventurer
Joined: May 2012
Location: Bisbee, AZ
Oddometer: 506
And you went right through my town, Bisbee, Arizona. If you stopped for coffee downtown at the Bisbee Coffee Company you might have seen my red SYM HD 200 parked in front. I, too, would have ridden along with you, at least as far as Columbus, NM. Have a great trip and keep the photos coming.
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Old 04-10-2013, 07:30 PM   #53
Justan Nudderboomer
Joined: Sep 2009
Location: SW Flowdah
Oddometer: 132
Great report! I'll be following along. Hope you get the scooter sorted out ok. And TS, not to worry about the picture thing in the dictionary. They put my picture in there last summer after wrecking on a perfectly straight piece of two lane road just outside of Wendover, Nevada.
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Old 04-13-2013, 08:00 PM   #54
Its a what?
Joined: Jul 2007
Location: in the powa band
Oddometer: 901
Did they get the Helix back in order for you?
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Old 04-14-2013, 06:40 AM   #55
TucsonStan OP
Joined: Feb 2013
Location: Tucson, Arizona
Oddometer: 49
Originally Posted by deezildennis View Post
Did they get the Helix back in order for you?
Just as I was about to write a short update on my new life in Giddings, Texas, I see that deezildennis as the question that is probably on more than a few minds.

And, the answer is.....YES!

I had the Helix taken to Greathouse Motorsports in Bryan, Texas. They said they thought it would take 4, maybe 5, days to get the parts. Once the parts were in, it would take a couple hours to fix it. On the following Wednesday, I took them the two new tires that I'd bought online and had delivered to my mother-in-law's house in Giddings. I asked the guy there (a different guy from the guy, Chad, who I'd originally spoken with) if they had the scooter apart. He said no. So does that mean that the parts haven't been ordered yet, I asked. He said no, that they'd ordered the parts and he was expecting them in that day. I didn't want to get into a discussion but I wondered how they could order parts when they hadn't taken it apart to find out what parts they needed to order.

The very next day, Thursday, they called and left me a rather terse message. "Mr. Scott, it's Ron, call me". I've gotten more than a few of those calls and it's always bad news, that they found something else wrong or they needed to order something else. On Friday, I called Ron and got the...........GOOOD NEWS! It was ready. The only thing that they hadn't ordered was a new clamp for where the muffler fits on the exhaust manifold. Since I still had the old muffler, that was no big deal.

As I installed the clamp, I had the Helix on the center stand. They had changed the old oil since it was just about due. When I checked it, it was way over full. Apparently they'd filled it while it was on the kick stand, not the center stand. They were more than happy to use a huge oil hypodermic looking thing to extract the excess oil. Later, I wondered if they might have drained the oil with the scooter on the kickstand. That would have put the oil drain plug on the high side of the scooter, meaning that all the old oil didn't get drained out before the new stuff got installed.

After leaving Greathouse with the scooter, my brother-in-law, who'd given me the ride to Bryan, drove/rode over to another brother-in-law's house for lunch. That ride was about 15 miles so I figured that would be a good test ride to see how things felt and sounded. Everything seemed fine. It does seem a tad louder than before but that could just be my imagination.

As I sit in McDonalds, using their wi-fi, the fog here in Giddings is pea soup thick. I'm hoping it'll burn off in a bit and I'll hit the road for Houston.

And so it continues, my search for Helix!
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Old 04-14-2013, 06:54 AM   #56
Joined: Jun 2011
Oddometer: 40
Awesome! Glad you will be back on the road!
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Old 04-14-2013, 09:30 AM   #57
long distance rider
Joined: Nov 2004
Location: Kingman, AZ
Oddometer: 33
Working for the "in-laws"

Glad to hear you're back on the road, I guess that means that you survived working on your brother-in-laws house without any major damage to yourself.......I have a bunch of experience working for the in-laws....the term "worked like a rented mule" comes to mind.....

Press on, we look forward to reading your reports of this adventure.....

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Old 04-14-2013, 03:22 PM   #58
Here...Hold my Beer.
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Joined: Mar 2008
Location: Greenville, SC
Oddometer: 3,423
Glad you are back on the road. Keep the reports coming.

And take lots of pictures.
2012 Suzuki Burgman 400
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Old 04-15-2013, 04:06 AM   #59
Gnarly Adventurer
Joined: Jul 2011
Location: Southeast Ga.
Oddometer: 347
Good to hear the Helix is rolling again! My daughter and I have ridden many happy miles together when we had a Helix years ago...
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Old 04-16-2013, 06:35 PM   #60
TucsonStan OP
Joined: Feb 2013
Location: Tucson, Arizona
Oddometer: 49 Helix

Hi everybody......I've tried to get this ride report written and posted for the last 2 days. Tonight, I stopped early, at a reasonably nice motel. I've been typing and uploading pictures for the last 5 hours, only to be dropped off-line every 10 minutes. The last time, I see it posted the report somewhat prematurely.

Just so y'all know, I'm alive, but extremely frustrated, having made it to Mobile, Alabama. I promise that I'll actually get some ride reports posted, even if I have to buy a motel and upgrade the wifi.
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