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Old 04-01-2014, 08:52 AM   #31
upside down parker
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Joined: Mar 2004
Location: nashville, tn
Oddometer: 3,276
I just caught up on this as well. btw, I'm in Nashville.

Fred, you're welcome at my place anytime. You as well, Bob.

Originally Posted by bpeckm View Post
One of the our "fellow" ADV'rs (hardwaregrrl Jenna, a good friend of your Atlanta buddy blake) just posted your ride report in the Airheads... man, you just made my through the entire report, and wishing (vicariously!) to be doing what you are doing. Good on ya' for setting out, far too often we plan so freeking meticulously that we lose the JOY in just... doing it. You have my respect and gratitude for what you do...

...put the cell phone down and go out and feel what life is about, amen!

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Old 04-01-2014, 11:11 AM   #32
Oil Whisperer
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Joined: Jun 2010
Location: MN-ND-MT
Oddometer: 117
Awesome RR. Stuff like this is what gets me through the day.

I'll be leaving soon on a journey of my own, and I just have to ask about the stuff you were putting in your nostrils in the desert? Is the hot, dry air prone to give folks nosebleeds? I'm a brain-frozen Minnesota boy and know nothing of these "deserts."

"The journey is the destination." --Dan Eldon

Betting the world on a pair of fives
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Old 04-01-2014, 02:54 PM   #33
Gnarly Adventurer
Joined: Jan 2012
Location: Central fly-over land.
Oddometer: 480
Wonderful writing style. Looking forward to your trip back east.
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Old 04-02-2014, 07:35 AM   #34
AKA Invisible Dave
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Joined: Aug 2005
Location: Loveland, CO summer - Green Valley, AZ winter
Oddometer: 2,991
Anxiously waiting to hear how you dealt with the loose cylinder stud . I had the same problem on my R100GS while at the national rally in Salem, OR last summer .

Why are we stopping? We don't have time for that!
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Old 04-02-2014, 07:26 PM   #35
Marc LaDue
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Joined: Jan 2008
Location: Hancock Township, Plymouth County, Iowa
Oddometer: 135
M & M from Sioux City say hi!

Is this the same Fred that didn't have enough bad luck with one low-side, and apparently just had to add a deer-hit somewhere out Oregon-way? Hope you're still trying to keep the shiny side up,

Marc and Marsha
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Old 04-03-2014, 05:48 AM   #36
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Joined: Jun 2013
Location: dartmouth ns
Oddometer: 125
Great story. It must be a blast. I keep expecting to read a "boy meets girl, boy leaves girl, girl meets boy later, type ending.
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Old 04-15-2014, 08:58 PM   #37
LandLeftBehind OP
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Joined: Feb 2012
Location: Maryland, 'merica
Oddometer: 147
To Hillsboro

Its good to hear from everyone. Blake you better be careful what you wish for - I might just end up at your doorstep again on a work night with some awful mess for you to deal with again.

Akula, I used a product called aquaphor. It seemed to work only marginally in the Mojave. Riding through that place was literally like pointing a blow dryer in my face for several hours, even with a full-face helmet (which was extremely nice to have in that environment). That stretch of I-10 was an exception to the other deserts I rode through though. The deserts of the Southwest are magical, I highly recommend visiting them.

As I mentioned in my last post, I was connected with a mechanic near Hillsboro who was willing to help me fix the issue. I had never met the fellow, and I had no idea what to expect.

I left the farm on a strongly optimistic note. I had been in one place for too long and it was refreshing to be on the road again. I was going to grab the horns of the mechanical issue that could ruin my trip. The oil was dripping away, but I knew the bike was going to get me to my destination.

Some accidental video footage of the Oregon Coastline:

I was lucky enough to meet a diverse group of folks through an internship the previous summer. One of those friends was currently studying in Newport - a perfect midpoint between Coos Bay and Portland. We met and promptly headed to the beach for a surf outing. I didnt have a surf board or wet suit, but it felt great to crash head-first in the frigid Pacific for as long as I could stand it.

It was the perfect place to stop for the night, or so I thought...

The following morning was typical for the Pacific Coast, cold and foggy. I was ready to hit the road though. I knew that day was going to be the it - I would arrive to the good shepherd, who would guide me out of the shadow of doubt that had always cast itself just beyond the mountains, deserts, and cities where I rode. "What is hidden under this aluminum housing?"

I saddle up my bags and check tire pressures and oil. I hop on the bike and press the starter button.



"Theres no way"

press again



The starter was emanating a noise that sounded like the teeth of gears griding together. My mind was a vacuum.


Vacuum mind. I simply refuse to believe whats happening is happening, now, on this day, of all days. My obstinance eventually pays off.


So now its a ride to Hillsboro with no stops. Too bad I didnt have enough gas to make it the whole way....

Maybe there is something to be said for simply refusing to accept a reality despite overwhelming evidence.

Pulling the starter out only left me confused. The magnets had collapsed, seizing the rotor and destroying the actuating arm. To this day, I wonder how I made it to Hillsboro without a pick-up truck.
We have left the land, and have embarked...

LandLeftBehind screwed with this post 04-15-2014 at 09:11 PM
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Old 09-26-2014, 10:49 AM   #38
Swimmin W/Waterwings
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Joined: Apr 2013
Location: Atlanta
Oddometer: 682
I understand life getting in the way and all.... but this is a big cliff to leave us hanging on for so long....
'94 R100GSPD

You can have my Airhead when you pry it from my cold dead fingers!
I only subscribe to the Girl on an old motorcycle: Post your pics! thread for the comments!
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Old 01-01-2015, 08:43 PM   #39
LandLeftBehind OP
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Joined: Feb 2012
Location: Maryland, 'merica
Oddometer: 147
Mechanics Camp with Wirespokes

Yikes! I really have neglected this thread. Sorry to anyone who was paying attention to it

To my credit, life has been quite crazy. Between moving to another state for graduate school (okay well I suppose Delaware and Maryland could be considered the same state), and producing an album with my band, time has been hard to find. I once again find myself with a little free time, so I think its high time to finish this story!

I last left off having just arrived to the mystery mechanic's house in the nick of time. My starter decided to blow up after 4,000 miles of cross-country traveling. I suppose it was sheer dumb luck that it happened en route to one of the most skilled airhead mechanic's in Oregon!

The magnets in the Valeo starter had collapsed, causing the actuating arm to seize and snap at the hinge. No bueno!

After ordering replacement parts for the starter, we decided to tackle the busted cylinder stud.

Carefully disassembling the cylinder to prevent damage to machined surfaces

It was easy enough getting everything apart, but we found that someone had already tried to repair the busted threads with a heli-coil which subsequently had failed. Wirespokes had the standard timesert sizes, but because of the previous heli-coil installation, we had to order a larger size.

While we waited for parts to come in, I decided to give Wirespokes, who had been nice enough to give me a place to stay, a break from my constant presence and check out Portland a little.

Not having much in the way of money, I was able to find a place to stay; some people who took in "couch-surfers" on a casual basis.

Drinking beers and sharing stories in the "hot tub"

I rode bicycles around the city with my impromptu hosts. One fellow rode what they call a "tall bike".

Who needs to buy food when it grows everywhere for free? These blackberries walls were a common site around Portland.

I returned after the weekend to find that many of our parts had arrived! Now the fun begins!

The process required reaming an appropriately sized hole, while periodically backing out to clean off metal shavings and re-greasing the reamer. We then ran a tap through the hole appropriately sized for the time-sert. (note: It is best to run the tap through aluminum only once to prevent cross-threading)

So much depends on so small an object!

It is necessary to use red loctite to secure the time-sert, taking care not to plug up the oil galley positioned directly above the stud. We did this by using a pick to apply the loctite to the threads in a way that would not come in contact with the oil galley.

We made the mistake of reaming all the way through the crankcase. When we threaded the stud in, we realized it would not seat. So we used red loctite to secure the thread in place, and used the jig to keep the stud squarely positioned as the loctite cured. Not an optimal outcome, but sometimes you have to just go with it. 8000 miles later everything seems to be working fine, but I would do it differently if I could do it again.

We put everything back together, then checked for oil flow from the studs by manually turning the engine over with the cylinder heads off. Satisfied with what we observed, we fired up the bike. Voila! The bike ceased leaking gratuitous amounts of oil from the cylinder connection and the stud nut now securely fastened the drive train components down. I could now take the journey home with the ease of mind I so needed.

By the time we had gotten the bike back together, it had been a serious few days of hard work. I was grateful for the hospitality and effort put forth by someone who just a few days ago was a complete stranger.

Its not everyday that someone just welcomes you in their home.
We have left the land, and have embarked...
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Old 01-24-2015, 07:39 PM   #40
Dark Helmet
Studly Adventurer
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Joined: Nov 2006
Location: You'll know when I know...
Oddometer: 694
Really great RR. NICE JOB,

I had to laugh at a coincidence. In September last year I had just completed the Trans America Trail after a 5000 mile ride (for those not familiar, it's 90% off pavement from TN to Port Orford OR). After dipping my DRZ400's front wheel in the Pacific I headed to Portland to ship my bike home. I made it to Newport where your starter died and spent the night there. The next morning I packed up for my last day of the trip and my bike wouldn't start! Never had an issue before on the trip. Had to bump start it on a very big hill. Made to Portland, shipped it home, and i couldn't get it to start! Pulled the top end apart and found compression rings frozen. New piston/rings, still wouldn't start. Got it bump started, rode 5 miles, started while warm, but next day no start. Another tear down, still won't start 5 months after end of a great trip! I have it narrowed to a couple electrical issues now, BUT, in Portland I developed two major issues that have stopped a bike that ran perfectly for 30 days and 5000 miles in all kinds of crap!

Stay out of Portland you guys!
You only need two tools in life - WD-40 and Duct Tape. If it doesn't move and should, use the WD -40. If it shouldn't move and does, use the duct tape
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