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Old 09-29-2011, 03:38 PM   #1
snohobo OP
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Supermoto Around South America

Hey!

What, where, when, how, who, why!


My name is Shaun. I´m 29 year old, virgo, I like long walks on the beach, and i'm currently in Cartagena, Colombia getting ready to ride around for 6 months.


I worked for a big corporate box for 5 years - and made a good business of it - but something was off. I didnt like being employee number 36,847. A bit less than 2 years ago - I decided to leave. No job on the horizon and a bit of savings I quit to go snowboarding and mountain biking in British Colombia. Did that for a bit and returned to San Francisco.


While waiting for something to happen - My friend asked me tohelp him start a motorcycle and 4x4 guesthouse in Panama City to accomodate overland travelers needing logistical help getting across the gap. Speaking no spanish and full of fear - I left for Panama two months later with my KTM on the back of our Land Cruiser.


Arrived in Panama, got the guesthouse up and running and started accepting guests 2 months after that. Spent 9 months in Panama,learnt spanish, dated some pretty latinas, and started getting adventure jealous seeing all my clients coming and going. I turned the reigns over to my partner and hit the road!


So I started planning my trip.


South America, 6 months, on my KTM 690 SMC. Counter clockwise starting in Colombia and ending in Colombia ' without going to Ushuaia.


You can check my trip planning thread to see the gear that I´m bringing....


http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=668218


Sit tight for my next installment. Stahlratte boat to Cartagena and me getting stranded with a dead bike my second day in!


An adventure is a poorly planned expedition.
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Old 09-29-2011, 07:32 PM   #2
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Sweet! Supermotos are so much fun, definitely subscribed!

Have a great trip!
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Old 10-02-2011, 06:41 PM   #3
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Stahlratte boat from Panama City to Cartagena...



All but Efrain and Ileana on the Vstrom Sidecar was headed to the Stahlratte - they were headed into a container because they though their sidecar was too big. After seeing the riding for the boat - I think they could have fit...


Met up with the airport riders and headed to Carti. I was pretty fearfull because my import papers were expired. We passed one checkpoint and they started asking for our customs paperwork. They lost interest after the 7th paper and I made sure to hang around the back.


Took a left of the Panamerica to head into Carti - Greg took some epic shots of this section of road. I{m the dude on the supermoto with the curly hair sticking out of my helmet...








Got to the boat and waited for the storm to pass so we could load bikes on the boat...




My bike was second on the boat - I even helped a little bit...



[IMG]img src="http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v189/snohobo/100_0171.jpg[/IMG]





Adrianna (my bike) and my tiny shorts safely aboard..




And were off. Stay tuned for photos and video of my 20 meter jump from the crows nest of the Stahlratte - and the break down of my bike 13 kms into my 6 months trip...[/QUOTE]
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snohobo screwed with this post 12-12-2011 at 07:05 PM
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Old 10-02-2011, 07:08 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snohobo View Post
I couldnt handle the incessant questions, and battle stories. And after this dude named Vinny stayed at the guest house for over a week, it pushed me over the edge. I finally snapped and had to get the hell out of there.....
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Old 10-03-2011, 07:12 AM   #5
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Damn dude I was wondering if that would be possible to jump from the crow's nest on the rat. You have got to be one of the few to do it, very interested in seeing the video

Glad you took the Stahlaratte, it is the best boat for taking motos. but the prices getting across the gap are becoming too crazy at this point.

Good luck with the bike, to me it sounds like an intake air problem with leak and/or restriction of air to the throttlebody. Sucks to have bike problems in such a great place but on the other hand it could be much worse of a location to break down I LIVED in Cartagena for about a month while waiting on a shock for my bike because of a stupid rubber bushing that failed.

Hope you get going soon, you will love Colombia, it is one of the most moto friendly places on the planet!
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Old 10-03-2011, 02:55 PM   #6
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Glad you made it to Panama and beyond Shaun. Looking forward to hearing how the trip goes.
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Old 10-04-2011, 12:02 PM   #7
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Old 10-06-2011, 12:41 PM   #8
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Off we go. The itinerary for the Stahlratte is to motor for 3 hours and anchor down in the Coco Bandera islands in San Blas. We spend 2 nights there. The energy on the boat is great. Along with 15 motorcyclists - we had 5 backpackers join us to round off the group - and the crew. Ludwig the captain, and Floyd, Nicole and Roli the crew.*


Spent a day and a half swimming and horsing around the boat. Snorkeling, sunning, eating, sleeping and doing small mods or repairs on the bike. I was able to mount the second Best Rest Peg Packer.*



We were told we could do anything we wanted on the boat - other than jump from the Crows Nest. It hadnt even occured to me to jump off the crows nest until they told me not too.*



Floyd was the most concerned - no naturally I had to wait around for him to leave the boat to jump. I climbed halfway up a few times and dove off to see how tht feels. Diving from 10 meters hurts if you are not used to it...





Decided to go for it. Climbed up quickly, maneuvered myself into the crows nest, climbed on the top railing of the crows nest, sat for about 3 seconds and jumped....


Wow. What a rush. I had forgotten how jumping into water from high high up feels. Ill be honest - I'm pretty sure I bruised my tailbone because it still hurts a few days later.




The next day word had spread that I jumped - and people wanted video and photos. We decided to get the jump form multiple angles. Here's a short video of the jump from the water, the boat, the crows nest and my thigh. I jumped with a gopro...


here's a short video edited by Kyle and David - two guys traveling south on chinese 150ccs bought in costa rica....



After some more hanging out and eating like kings - we went to bed knowing that we would hit open water for 28 hours.


Seas were not rough per sea, but they were rough enough that half the boat was imobile and at least 7 of 20 vomited. I wasn't feeling too hot. I spent most of the day laying down trying to keep whatever food was in my belly well....in my belly.


Stay tuned for arriving in cartagena, and the dissapointing start of my motorcycle adventure....
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Old 10-08-2011, 04:24 PM   #9
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Hey we arrived in cartagena on Monday morning but were unable to get the bikes off that day, we had to wait for Tuesday to roll around so that we could start the group importation procedure. Tyler and I had some friends in cartagena so we offloaded and went to find out place to sleep. I didn't know Tylers friends but we were assured we would have a place to sleep. I was midly uncomfortable because I don't like the unknown. I guess Ill have to get used to not knowing where I'm going to sleep.

Turns out the place we were staying was a luzury condo in Getsemani - the backpacker area of town. Chris and Anna from Holland and Sweden were joining us as well so it was a cool like cozy little situation. I'm going to have to learn to chill out and trust a bit more....

The next day we showed up at the boat and started offlaoding the bikes with the boat winch and a dingy. The only damage was to Chris' 1200 where one of the handlers decided to pick up the bike by the fog light. Probably a $300 mistake.

We met Manfred at the Aduana and settled in for a long wait. Then running around getting insurance, returning to the aduana, more waiting, typical border bs but magnified bc we were 14...

Finally got the bikes down around 4 and went out exploring Cartagena. Cool town but after living in Panama for 9 months I was ready to leave the sweaty cost behind. My plan was to take care of some things on the bike and then head north into the Siuerra Nevada and cross into Venezuela, ride south a bit and enter Colombia back at Cucuta....

The next day I did a oil change, and accidentally overfilled the engine, realized it and dumped 200 ml of oil out...

Morning came and it was time ot get the show on the road. We all took off in different directions at 730am. Chris, tyler and anna were heading to Mompos and I was heading to the hippy town of Tatanga....my bike had other ideas....

13kms into the trip, my bike stalls out. Not a good sign. I pull over and realize that I'm still overfilled so I dump more oil out. Open the airbox preparing to remove a bit of blowback out and the box is clean. Weird. The bike cranks but will not start up. I try is so much that I kill my battery. Cool. Its about 9am and heating up quickly. I Pull my phone out to call Roli who was a deckhand on the boat, motorcycle mechanic, and all around badass. I have no credit....Great.

I wait around a little and Anhelica and Arnaud drive by - two more from the boat. They lend me the phone and I call Roli who says he's on his way....

Roli shows up and we boost my battery with his. Try to get the bike started and it fired up with some throttle input but will not idle. We decide to try riding to the gas station 1 km away and the whole time the bike is backfiring, sputtering and sounding terrible. I fill up and we decide that its best to head back to Cartagena to resolve this issue...

So much for leaving Cartagena....
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Old 10-09-2011, 09:54 PM   #10
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Grrrrr! I can't believe that my bike broke down 13ks into my trip. You have to laugh at situations like this though - its really the only way to look at it. PLus I have no idea what's wrong with the bike so no point in freaking out now...

Roli looks at me and says we should head back to Cartagena, I agree though fail to see how it's going to happen. I suppose Ill start asking for a ride from a truck heading that way.


Roli looks at me annd says in a sweet german accent. "No - towing is better and cheaper..."


Towing? Um with what? Oh that hug elenght of rope of course. I'm skeptical as he ties off the huge rope to my headtube and then the other end to his rack. Its a long rope - maybe 6 meters long.


He looks at me and says..."You fall, I fall...." OK......


We get going and its pretty sketchy at first. I'm nrvous, and everytime I let the rope go slack Roli gets a big tub backwards as the rope catches up...


We make the 12ks easy enough as I learn to relax and learn to modulate the brakes to keep the rope tight. The tricky part arrives as we enter town and the traffic thickens. Were not rolling fast so as bikers come around me to pass - they don't realize I'm being towed until they try to get in front of me and realize what's going on.


Roli brings me to Gato Negro - a fabulous little cafe in Getsemani. Elke is the German owner and she's great. Great food, great atmospehere, the only espresso machine the neighborhood - and a safe courtyard for me to store and work on my bike.....




I get going trying ot figure out what is wrong. I do the obvious.....Post on ADVrider.... Here's the thread and if you read the whole thing you'll get the resolution....I'm about 1 week behind but plan on catching upsoon...


http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=729593


This is what stranded in Cartagena looks like...




Until next time...
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Old 10-13-2011, 03:36 PM   #11
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So I start following the suggestions in the thread. I'm hoping its as easy as cleaning out the airbox, TB, whatver sensors I can get too, resetting the ecu by unplugging the battery. I get to work pulling the airbox and funnily enough its devoid of any traces of oil. At this point I'm oretty convinced that the breakdown is caused by my overfilling the motor with oil.

Airbox is clean, I pull the throttle body and shoot it full of TB cleaner, pull the sensor off the top off the top of th einjector and clean that too. Pull the injector and spray it quickly with TB cleaner and make sure to dry it well as to not harm the plastic. Put everything back together.




Nothing....


OK. Next is to call a few techs I Know. Tom over at Moore and Sons in Santa Cruz where I bought the bike. I also call Scuderia West in San Francisco where I get the bike serviced, and again call a shop in SoCal that was recommended by Merlin (EL Mago on ADV) whihc came recommended from Vinny (Crashmaster here). I tell them the whole deal and everyone is a bit stumped and says that with computer bikes its pretty much impossible to diagnose over the phone. I should clean the TB, the MAF sensor, the injector.




I find an injector cleaner in Cartagena and bring it there. They look at the injector and laugh saying its the smallest they have ever seen though they will rig it to their cleaner and give it a once over. Its handed to me after 20,000 pesos and one hour claimed clean and firing well. I'm very excited as I rush back to the shop to pop it back in.


I pop the injector back in and it fires right up! I'm so excited and start to put the bike back together while I wait for the 15 min idle reset to do its thing. As I put the panels back on I notice that the right side panel isn't lining up with the tab on the radiator and get working on adjusting the tab. And by adjusting I mean prying it with a screwdriver.....


You guessed it - I cracked the radiator where the tab attaches to it ad fluid starts spewing out of the bottom. I immediately shut the ike off and get close to tears over how stupid I am. I had already fixed the top part of the radiator where the panel screws in with jbweld when I crashed over 5000 miles ago and figured jbweld would do fine. Unfortunately the placement of the tab where it meets the radiator is awkward and not a good place for jb weld though that does not stop me form making a bad situation worse by jamming jb weld all over the place - thus making the repair I will eventually have to do harder....


I take a break and go have dinner with friends - ready to find a radiator shop on a sat to help me fix my mistake.


Saturday comes and I drain the radiator and take it over - put it in a bag and head into Pied de la Popa where all the repair shops are. I find a radiator place and for 50,000 they agree to fix the bottom part and decide to fix the top part though I told them it wasn't necessary as its been fine for 5,000 miles. They don't listen and 'fix' it anyways.






I return in one hour, grab the radiator and head back to the shop. Install everything and the bike fires right up! I'm stoked and let it do its 15 min idle reset and head out for the night really excited.....


The next day I start to plot my escape and the beginning of the trip. Try to start the bike and....


It won't start.


AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!


I go back to the drawing board and am told its fuel related by advriders. Fuel filter? Got a spare so I decide to drain the fuel and install the new filter.




PS thanks to Patrick Womak for recommending the Enduro Trail sidestand which without would have been difficult to perform this repair. Great little too lfor those without cente stands....




I pull the rear wheel and the rear well plate and put a new bucket under the tank, pull the pump and let the fuel spill out. The gas in the bototm of the bucket is full of sediment though I'm unsure how much of it was in the tank and how much of it came from the swingarm as the fuel spilled over it. Probably a combo of both. The filter itself it dark and black but not cloged as far as I can see.




I install the new one and check the fittings on the pump, replace the small pre filter under the pump and put everything back in making sure to not kink any lines.


I filter the gas through a filter Crashmaster gave me that filters out water. I leave the last half gallon in the bucklet and gift it to a Colombian and let him use my filter before he puts that crap in his bike. Full disclaimer given, use at your own risk.


Put everything back together and voila! The bike still doesn't start. Surprise there.


Vacuum leak you all say? OK, I start looking around and replugging things that were never plugged when I did a half assed canisterectonomy, I get a stern email form Crashmaster urging me not to do it halfassed. Do it right or don't do it at all. OK - point taken.


I buy various fittings and try various things. SAS plugged in and not, Canister valve plugged in and not. Throttle reset, etc etc ad nauseaum....


Bike still not idle but will run under throttle. Bike sounds like shit after 4k.


Time to throw in the towel and start looking for a ride to Medellin. I'm bummed because I had plans to ride north into Venezuela and then down into Cucuta and then to San Gil and into Bogota. But plans change in trips like this. I gave it my best shot and not know how to remove a radiator, the pump, the TB, and a few other things. After six months I will eventually know this bike in and out.
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snohobo screwed with this post 12-12-2011 at 07:06 PM
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Old 10-14-2011, 10:19 AM   #12
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ahh man, sorry to hear it. best of luck on your return.
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SoCal_NoDak-2012: http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=829203
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Old 10-17-2011, 09:06 AM   #13
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oh mother f!

Internet explorer just reset my whole post as I was writing it. Im quiting smoking and about 2 minutes away from throwing this computer on the ground.


Long story short - I took a truck to Medellin. It cost 200,000 and I slept the whole way. Cops woke me up
in the middle while we had to wait for an escort during a particularly sketchy part of road.

I arrived in medellin with a broken kickstand 18 hours later.


photos.










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Old 10-18-2011, 12:32 PM   #14
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at least there was a gourmet restaurant nearby! hang in there man!
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TAT-2013: http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=913898
SoCal_NoDak-2012: http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=829203
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Old 10-18-2011, 02:54 PM   #15
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Damn Austrians and their bikes!

Hope you get it sorted out soon. When they are running those KTMs are sweet bikes, and your trip should be a lot of fun. Definitely post your findings, after half of Advrider followed along Luke & Nick in Africa the regulator / rectifier on the 690 would have been an easy suspect.

If you are not in a hurry I can definitely recommend that you check out San Gil, I was just there a month ago. Awesome place for rafting and beautiful scenery.

In the Zona Cafetera the Termales de San Vincente are also a really nice to chill in for a day or so, about an hour ride up into the mountains from Pereira.

Good luck in Medellin!
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