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Old 12-04-2010, 10:57 AM   #76
JGBrown OP
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Who said anything about innocent?

I live in Vancouver(SF North) I'm not exactly new to turning down advances from guys.
I'm just not used to someone asking something so... directly, I think bluntly might be the wrong word.
or as a pair...
Hell I'd have had the same expression if someone I was dating for years had asked the same thing with a friend.

I've traveled in San Francisco before, when I was 15 or so. Had a bit of a run in with a fellow who works at a burger king just around Union square, between that and the Tenderloin. Might as well share that story, since it could have ended a lot worse.
My mum still doesn't know about this one.
She was asleep at the time.
I've always liked night time, so I wandered downstairs, went to a couple corner shops until I got a pack of Marlborough Reds, then sat out and smoked and watched people go by, talking with an old traveler(read hobo) Watching the strange people wander past. We met: I met a prostitute with her boyfriends tooth in a necklace from when she'd punched him, a drunken man in a wheelchair, and other strange characters.
The fellow who worked at the burger king by which we were smoking came out and gave me a pop(soda) and I didn't think anything of it, he was asking me what I was doing, and I told him I was trying to find a grocery store for tomorrow, as my family travels light, we don't tend to eat out much. He told me he knew of one on his route home, which was into the Tenderloin and he could just show it to me before I head back. For non San Francisco readers, the Tenderloin is like Hastings in Vancouver, or skid row anywhere else.
Well we turned the corner and did I ever get a surprise.
I'm used to that kind of place now from Vancouver, but I certainly felt a bit unsettled, with someone screaming nasty things towards us, and some people fighting. I reached over to check a Hideaway hidden under my shoulder bag strap, and the Burger King perv said, oh, don't worry I've got lots of good stuff. I didn't get that either until he kept saying I didn't have to worry and he did it too.(He thought I was scratching the inside of my elbow)
I learned years later from some Ozzie travelers back in Canada that he was pretty well known for getting young homeless boys/travellers to come hang out, giving them heroin enough to make sure they pass out and then...


I'll check those out, thanks! Did you hear about the other CX rider in CA, I'm not sure if you are the Sarah people were suggesting he try and make it to to help sort his stator out. Glad I did mine with the silverwing stator and ignitech system, both together cost only 100$ than one of the oem stators being rewound, with no ignition replacement

One difference in SF is I seem to get sideswiped at a lot less, we have a real problem with drivers in Vancouver who can't drive at all as far as I can tell, I had one driver in an economy shoebox try and sideswipe my lifted jeep. The horn got their attention better than the one on the bike though.
Other than that one night, the drivers have been great so far.
Except one lady in a Mercedes, she was busy texting all the way down i10, she'd stop, speed up pass everyone, then start weaving all over the road, almost into the median, and slow down, or run up close to someone and slam on the brakes. I thought she was drunk, or falling asleep, Finally I had enough of getting passed by her, then having her come back to me as cars passed her on the right while she wrote. That's when I learned my CX can still get above 90.

PCH is beautiful, up there with 395 for favorite roads so far, not quite as nice for bikes IMO, and too many cars but the views are amazing.

Cool I'll try and check that out when I get rolling again.
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Originally Posted by sarahp View Post
Oh dear, a sweet innocent Canadian boy in the Castro district. I probably shouldn't have laughed as much as I am at your "predicament".

Welcome to California! I had to grin and roll my eyes at your description of the driving here - that is unfortunately par for the course around here, especially in the bigger cities. I don't even notice it anymore until someone points it out - it's how I learned to drive, although San Francisco has more offensive drivers per capita than most cities. :) It's always "fun" driving in the Bay Area, that's for sure!

Wish we could have met up while you were going through central (coastal) California. I sure do miss my Twisted Twin - I'm seriously considering Larry's CX although I'd need to get the funds up - but the PCH to (past?) Santa Monica is so gorgeous!!

I guess you're in AZ now but if you get the chance head down to Glamis Dunes off I-8, they're pretty incredible and the weather is perfect down there this time of year. Anza Borrego desert is also free camping - just follow the Snow Birds down there this time of year.

Sounds like you're having a literal blast, and man the experiences you get (and turn down ) make a lifetime of memories!!! Road trips are so much better behind the bars of a bike.



Quote:
Originally Posted by dwoodward View Post
I'm going to guess it's due to too much weight too far back- the photos show a lot of luggage up high and behind the rear axle. That's why it gets worse as the tank gets empty- you're getting to the point there's not enough weight on the front tire. You might try leaning forward a bit; if that helps, see if you can find a way to get more of your luggage moved forward. A tool roll, for example, strapped to the forks under the headlight...
The packing is deceptive, the large bag on top is lightweight, about half the space is taken up by my Thermorest foam pad(weighs about 400 grams), then a bag of clothes, a small backpack, a raincoat and a laptop bag filled with paperwork lenses etc. Most of my weight is in the bottom of the saddlebags, which because of the angle are slung way lower and much farther forward than regular cases on the rear rack the weight is mostly as far forward, and way lower than a passenger would be.

It does it unloaded too. It did it on the 2nd test run but not the first, after we added 2psi to the front tire, I aired back down before leaving Sacramento. The suspect at this point is the steering bearings, they are pretty notched, so we ran them relatively loose. I'll be fixing that and realigning the front end today, then I'll go from there.
Form mounted tool rolls end badly on the CX, Larry found increased overheating problems with doing that, I could put a tube down low by the oil filter, but tools are already down by the rear axle and forward.
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Old 12-04-2010, 10:59 AM   #77
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Riding Arizona




I woke up around sunrise, shot some more pictures and packed up to leave.



Back on the road for another long high speed run, I'm amazed at how well the bike does at 140km/hr all day, no overheating or problems, still has acceleration left if I wanted it I think. More beautiful desert conditions, clear and cool weather. I finally filled my water pouch, I have a cheap(7$) 4L plastic one that is unaffected by chlorine. It was amazing how rich I felt with all that water, I've grown so accustomed to only using my Nalgene bottle, a 16oz HDPE one, they've started selling all over again since the BPA issues, they are soft instead of hard like the Plexiglas ones are, and 3$ instead of 10$.
At night I would usually drink about half, and ration the rest through the night with enough left for a mouthful or two for the first few hours riding. I'm used to caution with water from backpacking, and got used to it immediately despite getting dehydrated and not always feeling great. The first time I stopped and filled the bottle again from the pouch I wanted to take a picture, I was so excited that I could drink as much as I liked.
I stopped at a McDonalds for dinner and some internet time. I came close to crying watching an old man drink coffee at Mcdonalds, he just sat with his head down, hat pulled low endlessly tracing patterns on the table with the saddest most lost look I've seen on a face anywhere. Leaving I saw an older traveller with a backpack reading a New Jedi Order paperback, I'm a closet Star Wars geek so I stopped, he's been wandering the area living out of a pack for 13 years since the world is ending. He found a book called the bible code 13 years ago, and has been following that ever since. Since I was apparently lukewarm I would burn and die as will all the other lukewarm people who aren't following the 10 commandments or who follow the false god of Christianity. He wasn't malicious about it, just very matter of fact, and glad that he was saved and would live through Armageddon which was coming in the next 4 years some time. After that we talked about the beautiful sunset, the stars at night and the joys of camping on the road. The beautiful moments are still out there to be found. Humans are durable, humans can be kind, humans are marvellously complicated things. There are always pockets of humanity, wonder and warmth even in a system that covers every accessible point of land in barbed wire. The moments are out there. It might be the best of all possible worlds, but that doesn't mean it's kind. he gave me some great tips about finding unfenced areas, as the law in Arizona is that any unfenced desert can be camped in it is really too bad there don't seem to be any, just like California. Even overpasses are surrounded underneath, as this is between the other two fences and the two sides of the interstate it told me that the fences are for two legged animals, not cattle.
He cautioned me not to camp east of Tuscon, too close to the border, and many problems with people making messes and stealing. I checked around the town I decided to call it quits at for the night, Benson AZ and found him to be correct, I got a bad vibe everywhere I checked, and found lots of broken bottles, garbage, burned up boxes, paper-towels people had used for toilet paper and human droppings. I was also feeling more and more ill, so I found a motel 6 for the night, it's the cheapest place in town and cost 45$ but I got 10% off since they only had a smoking room left, and I wanted non-smoking. This is my birthday present to myself, as I write this today I'm still sitting in the hotel, staying another night because I was too sick to ride, my fever just broke an hour ago. I'm now officially 23 years old, a bit scary to realize, I sometimes catch myself saying 17 when people ask how old I am. I guess my internal clock stopped there, but nature disagrees.
When I loaded my stuff into my room I was confused, and awed with so much space, the lady said it was a small room, but it's bigger than my room back in Vancouver and I'm all alone in it.

It has two beds, so I'm sleeping in the other one tonight. I didn't know what to do with it all. Even bathroom is bigger than my tarp,

the tap was exciting, I have been drinking tons of water, and the ceiling in the room is so high. I walked around it several times and took pictures, it's funny how fast humans adapt. I felt like a king, with so much wealth spread out around me, and so much space. All of my belongings had their own bed, the room is bigger than the one I shared with all five of the Carnegie Carnival, and the beds are larger than my tent. Someone coming from their own house would probably find it cramped and small. It's funny how the past shapes our perceptions. I had a bath immediately, first time I've had a real bath in months, even in Vancouver I just shower. Washed some clothes, and called my parents with Skype. I've noticed while getting stuff out of my bags that I'm starting to fall into travelling as though I'd always been moving with Aurora, I just know where my belongings are based on where they would be on the bike. Today it doesn't feel as special anymore, or overly large, I guess I've adapted to having the space now.

An actual picture of me, guess that tripod is handy for something after all. At least I can scare children away from the bike with photos of my ugly mug on it or something.
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Old 12-04-2010, 01:03 PM   #78
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A little politeness goes a long way, or how I (almost) got kicked out of a hotel.

I woke up pretty late and groggy this morning, after working very late into the night to get the travel report up to date, I slept in, and when I woke up I was still sick, although definitely on the mend. I decided to hop in for a quick shower but kept thinking I was hearing someone knock, I'd turn off the water, get out of the bathroom and call out through the door, to no answer. Get back in the shower, turn the water on and keep going. It seems that the housekeeping lady stopped by, and didn't get an answer the second time she asked if I needed service(because I was in the shower) So she called the mananager, who must have been having a bad day. He knocked on the door again, I turned off the water, thinking I'd heard a knock and repeated the process, only this time I stuck my head out too. Nobody there.
He then knocked a third time, and I finally managed to catch him, An older, rather angry fellow with an eyepatch, he tore a strip off me about not answering, to which I was polite but firm, as I had certainly answered, despite being unsure if there even was anyone knocking, and he could clearly have heard the shower running.
I didn't realize that I was approaching checkout time so the start of it was probably my fault.
He asked me if I was staying or leaving, since I'm still pretty sick and dizzy, I said I was good and would stay since I was so close to checkout time, at which point he yelled that he didn't have time to play silly games and told me to get out of his hotel, then stormed off to get back to his office. It was a very impressive angry stride I must admit, I don't know if he's practiced in a mirror but it was really well done.

I decided while packing that I really just wasn't safe to ride, so I went downstairs to have a discussion, I apologized for any miscommunication, and explained that I had answered every time, and that as I was past the checkout time I would really prefer to honor the policy of paying for another night. He apologized as well, and we talked about the bike for a bit, certainly a better result than sulking and parading out of here in a bad mood, although I was really looking forward to finally getting to write a scathing post about somebody being a jerk on my trip, I guess I'll have to wait.
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Old 12-04-2010, 06:46 PM   #79
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This last spring, I rode my first real bike from Toronto to Calgary and back , a 1982 Yamaha Vision (xz550) with no real plan, no idea of my capabilities and just the basic route planned heading into the setting sun.

People said i was crazy... and could not understand how i could do such a thing at 21 on such an old machine in the cold Canadian spring.

Needless to say, I went ahead with it. My only regret was that the ride only lasted 10 days. After day 3.... its just natural!

I aim to forward your blog posts to all the doubting toms, and show them that i am a relatively "sane" member of the adv community.

I graduate in 16 months and i'll be hoping to follow your treads. Keep it real man

You give us fellow dreamers more reason to believe in living the dream

Cheers
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Old 12-10-2010, 06:15 AM   #80
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Yep that Sarah was indeed me. Turned out he didn't need any help but we were ready to help if he called. :)

I imagine Larry installed a set of tapered roller bearings in your steering column? It would seem a silly thing to skip with such a dramatic rebuild. My GL's handlebars were squirrelly, especially at low speeds: I remember on my roadtrip I almost got into a tankslapper myself at highway speeds when I loosened my grip on the bars too much. The roller bearings (from All Balls, I forget the product number) fixed that problem - we found the bike had worn a groove at dead center I had assumed was stock but wasn't. Torquing down everything a teensy bit past spec eliminated most of my steering issues and allowed a "dampening" effect, although obviously without any additional apparatus.

I only mention it as I didn't see any reference to the bearings in your build thread, although I think you mentioned rebuilding the steering. Thankfully there's a whole CX forum who'd love to give you pointers, as well as Larry on speed-dial.

Looking forward to your adventures, and happy belated birthday! You've got some guts doing a roadtrip this time of the year (braving rain, fog, possible snow etc). Of course that just means you'll have a bigger adventure.

Ride safe!!
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Old 12-10-2010, 06:42 AM   #81
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nice rr man. I love my CX to death, beat to shit rat bike that it is, despite years of my abuse I've never been able to kill it. If you need any parts or help, let me know, I can send what I've got, though I'm sure the guys over at choppercharles have you covered! good luck, and nice pictures too..
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"Once again there is tons of South Americans, Europeans and miscellanious Asians strolling around but dang few Americans. They are probably busy working overtime saving up for just the right bike, gps, saddle bags, blue tooth, crash bars, audio mixer/wahatever. Work harder, faster I am sure that next bike will be the one to make you happy."
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Old 12-10-2010, 09:35 AM   #82
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Jeremy has been at my house since Wednesday evening, after an unusual course of events.

I had invited a friend to stay at my place while driving south to Panama from Wyoming. Ian was on the hwy in Texas and was flagged down by Jeremy. Jeremy had seen "Wyoming to Panama" on the back of Ian's truck and was compelled to get his attention and chat. Thats the short story.


Now he's here and we've been shooting the bull for a couple days now. About to do a couple modifications on his bike before he heads off this evening.


Jeremy got on the road last night, not to go far, but to stay at another Adventure Rider's house and hit up the Sony store to get his e-reader fixed.

LaOutbackTrail screwed with this post 12-11-2010 at 07:12 AM
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Old 12-10-2010, 04:31 PM   #83
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Dude, you left your stove!
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Old 12-10-2010, 05:45 PM   #84
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hey joven amigo!!!!!!
i am a ADV biker too, i live in Zacatecas Zacatecas Mexico, if you come to here, let me know, i have a room for you for a couple of nigths, and bike shop if you need anything, so my young friend, good luck!!! AND RIDE WELL MY FRIEND!!! viva mexico cabrones!!!!!
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Old 12-10-2010, 11:57 PM   #85
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Old 12-15-2010, 05:44 PM   #86
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Heading east from Odessa, I wasn't stopping for many photo's just pushing to make some miles.

The first mountains in miles


First time I've ever seen cotton, I had to stop and pick some, and shoot some pictures.





For about an hour, a lifted Toyota truck and I were running about the same pace, in and out of traffic trading up positions, I spotted Wyoming to Panama on the back, as the sun was starting to set, I decided I'd pull up to say hello, I waved to the guy in the cab, he made the universal sign for drinking, and we pulled over at the next exit. The driver was Ian, a off-roader from Wyoming driving his supercharged V6 Tacoma down to Panama. Turned out we were both trying to get to the Ft Worth/Dallas area, he was stopping in to meet someone from Expedition Portal in Dallas for their birthday. He invited me along, and since I figured it was a bit late for showing up in Ft Worth and so I went along. It turned out to be one of my better decisions, as everyone in the house that night was into off-road driving and motorbikes. The birthday guy, Scott has ridden tons in Mexico, and is planning to start a tour company, which I'm sure is going to rock. He gave me a sweet plan for a route, involving some sweet tracks. He even hooked me up with maps of the area, and everyone gave me tons of advice and help, we worked on my bike a bit, adding washers to the exhaust to try and increase the back pressure to improve my fuel economy closer to stock again, and messed about with the wiring a bit to fix the heated grips without success.


Tom, friend of the birthday boy.


Nina, Kacy+Kylie and the birthday boy Scott



Mike, another friend of the birthday boy.



Ian as we all got the bottom of the bottles and we started solving the world's problems



Kylie getting ready to climb into Dad(Scott)'s truck for a drive



Ian's dog guarding the house





Ian ready to roll out



Ian and the sign



Gas station door, Patroit Gas.

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Old 12-16-2010, 03:55 PM   #87
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No, I've still got the stock bearing, they are pretty notched in quite a few places, previous owner cranked them down without grease.
Larry's had good success in the past running them slightly looser and well greased if they are damaged like that.
It's only at the specific speed it does it, but it could be the head bearing.
Quote:
Originally Posted by sarahp View Post
Yep that Sarah was indeed me. Turned out he didn't need any help but we were ready to help if he called. :)




I imagine Larry installed a set of tapered roller bearings in your steering column? It would seem a silly thing to skip with such a dramatic rebuild. My GL's handlebars were squirrelly, especially at low speeds: I remember on my roadtrip I almost got into a tankslapper myself at highway speeds when I loosened my grip on the bars too much. The roller bearings (from All Balls, I forget the product number) fixed that problem - we found the bike had worn a groove at dead center I had assumed was stock but wasn't. Torquing down everything a teensy bit past spec eliminated most of my steering issues and allowed a "dampening" effect, although obviously without any additional apparatus.

I only mention it as I didn't see any reference to the bearings in your build thread, although I think you mentioned rebuilding the steering. Thankfully there's a whole CX forum who'd love to give you pointers, as well as Larry on speed-dial.

Looking forward to your adventures, and happy belated birthday! You've got some guts doing a roadtrip this time of the year (braving rain, fog, possible snow etc). Of course that just means you'll have a bigger adventure.

Ride safe!!
__________________
Canada to Panama on a 79 CX500: http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=62962
Logbook for
motorcycle travelers I'm developing, draft now available for review.
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=739193

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Old 12-16-2010, 06:30 PM   #88
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Heaven forbid you should ever encounter any problems with your trusty steed.....but I've got a couple of cx500 parts bikes that are just collecting dust in my old pannier shop in Washington. If I can ever be of any assistance...call or Pm me! Ride safe, ep!c
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Old 12-16-2010, 06:46 PM   #89
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I'm curious about the gear you're wearing, particularly the jacket and pants, could you give a run-down if you get the chance?
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Old 12-17-2010, 09:43 AM   #90
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I'm curious about the gear you're wearing, particularly the jacket and pants, could you give a run-down if you get the chance?
Jacket is a Revitt Cayenne pro, with Sas-tec armour all around. Decent coat, good design and fabric but the armor is only ok, as it has some tears starting to form where it folds, not something I want in impact armor.
The liners suck so I ditched the warm one and will probably ditch the waterproof one soon to save space.
(265$ advrider)
The hoodie is a Triple Aught Design(TADgear.com) Ranger hoodie, latest and greatest quality fleece, great design and made in the USA.(225$ at tadgear)

over top(not shown) I wear a TADgear hardshell as well, unlike the useless liner that took 3 days to dry, and the gortex pockets that let my passport get soaked even when properly closed, it actually works.
It's a great jacket for riding in, and I like the waterproof on the outside idea, tad gear hooked me up with a factory 2nd to test out so 0$.

This combination has been at least tolerably warm down to 22f(-4c) riding for long hours. Much better than the worthless insulated one piece suit that leaked inside of 10 minutes and was cold in 15.
Off the bike I have been living in the hoodie most of the time, with the hardshell when there's a high wind or rain.

Shirt is the hanes 5 for 6$ tshirts from walmart. Love them, cheap, light, easy to pack.

Pants, BMW riding pants, not sure of the model, their knee armour just sucks, very uncomfortable, if I'd had them sooner I would have replaced it with SAS-tec stuff.
Design is great, especially the pockets and breatheable panels. They breathe well, and comfortable even without long underwear(mesh lined pants tend to really bug me these don't)
The fabric is crap though, the knees have got about 1/2" of fuzz on them, if they abrade that easily against the boots and the ground when I'm working on the bike, they aren't nearly as nice as the cayenne's material.50$(bought on advrider)
Boots, Sidi Discovery, I am not a fan. I think I had better ankle protection, breathability and comfort in the heavy duty leather boots I left behind when I got these, the ankle armour seems flimsy, and it folds in at the top slightly cutting into my ankles, I lined them with some bits of a foam sleeping pad to stop my ankles bleeding.
They don't breathe worth a damn, but do seem to let water in when it rains. Would prefer Combat touring boots, or the new sidi ones with proper ankle armour
(120$ bought on advrider)

around my neck, the best 14$ I spent, it's a skiing neck guard to keep cold air away, with a mesh panel for nose and mouth. Makes a huge difference in comfort.
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Logbook for
motorcycle travelers I'm developing, draft now available for review.
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=739193

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