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Old 04-20-2005, 07:14 AM   #1
DataDaddy OP
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Rally to the First Service Interval, 2005

I have been lurking here for a couple of months, enjoying the great community, the shared knowledge, and the general suckage of everything adventure motorcycling. I have been using two-wheeled transportation to access freedom for much of my life, though it has always been pedal powered.

Last Wednesday, I got the call from the dealer that my new (first) motorcycle was ready to be picked up – a shiny, new 2005 KLR 650. It was then that I first noticed the beginnings of a disfiguring facial malady, commonly referred to as a “dumb-ass grin.” My wife even laughed at me as we drove to pick up the bike.


So, here I am with Carl the owner of Village Cycle Center in Starkville, MS.


Despite my choice of a full-face helmet to hide the jack-o-lantern-like ear-to-ear hole in my face, the seemingly permanent deformity is plainly obvious. The symptoms grow more complex as an unknown force prompts a Tom Cruise “Days of Thunder” thumbs-up. Where is the AdvRider salute I have been practicing? What a tool…

Here is my first action-riding picture. Doing little circles in the parking lot.


This seemingly simple maneuver accomplishes several ends. It assures my wife that I do know at least the basics of keeping a motorcycle up right. Confirms much the same thing to Carl, demonstrating that I can get far enough from the dealership to absolve him of responsibility. Allows me a couple of minutes to get used to the bike, since it’s been about a month since my MSF Basic Riders Course. Yeah, yeah, I remember this… just like that Nighthawk I learned on… yeah, yeah, that’s the ticket. Couple more circles and everyone is happy. Carl has all his money. My wife won’t start worrying until I ride off and I have a dumb-ass grin, a new bike, and a brain wading through 3 million new input streams processing the new motorcycle.riding function.

Instead of a left turn out of the dealers, I take a right. This suggests another malady that may also be common. The left would have been the most direct path back to work. In what will become a recurring event, I subconsciously choose the long way to work. I sense that this will grow worse. I enjoy a nice, low-traffic loop back to the office, only riding for two miles with my right blinker on. It take twenty minutes to get back to the office which taking the short way is about two miles from the shop.

Back at work, I pretend to work for the last 45 minutes of the day, though the grinning deformity makes my eyes really squinty – very hard to clearly view work on the computer. Strangely, AdvRider.com isn't affected by my impaired vision. No time for computer problems, I have to (get to) ride the bike home. If I go now, I can beat most of the traffic for my first ride home.

I wind my way through the Mississippi State University campus, choosing lower speed, quieter roads for the trip home, allowing more time to become more comfortable with the new bike. About halfway through campus, using an advanced clutching technique, I stall the bike at a stop sign.

Crap…Dumbass…push the starter button…nothing..…crap…push button again…nadda. The nanoseconds seemingly stretch into hours and probably a thousand cars back up behind me. Crap…

Problem solving kicks in…why is the high beam indicator light out…crap…why isn’t my blinker working anymore… Two-thousand more cars behind me…its been at least 10 seconds. Check kill switch…its fine. Turn key off and on…no dice… WTF… got to get out of the road…crap…crap…crap….15 seconds...

What fate awaits our hero? Will this be the end? Tune next time when Noobie Adventure Boy says "WTF...crap...crap...crap!" Watch as our hero duck-walks his bike across two lanes of traffic. More adventure to follow!

DataDaddy screwed with this post 04-05-2006 at 02:46 PM
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Old 04-20-2005, 07:54 AM   #2
doyle
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Quote:
Confirms much the same thing to Carl, demonstrating that I can get far enough from the dealership to absolve him of responsibility.


Great report.

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Old 04-20-2005, 08:06 AM   #3
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you are so gonna fit in around here


Welcome to the Asylum
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Old 04-20-2005, 08:11 AM   #4
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He's down in Coonass territory...

Should be interesting in a Yoda/Luke way! NO! Young Jedi you must get rid of the unnatural fear of stalling (oh, and the stock Deathwings) before you can ride like the wind. The master knows.

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Old 04-20-2005, 08:26 AM   #5
bavarian
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Welcome. You're at the right place. And don't tell me that this Flug syndrome - dragging out ride reports for months - has rubbed off on you. Where's the end of the story? Pushed the bike back home?
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Old 04-20-2005, 09:03 AM   #6
DataDaddy OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bavarian
Welcome. You're at the right place. And don't tell me that this Flug syndrome - dragging out ride reports for months - has rubbed off on you. Where's the end of the story? Pushed the bike back home?
If Ant can milk the Alaska trip...

Second part shortly...
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Old 04-20-2005, 09:28 AM   #7
bacon
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Welcome

Just wanted to say welcome it the Asylum
Now finish the story.
Ps I live in Laurel and work 7 & 7 when I'm off I ride up your way often.
if you want to meet some time PM me and I will give you my contact info.
Latter
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Old 04-20-2005, 09:57 AM   #8
DataDaddy OP
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Rally to the First Service Interval, 2005 - Part 2

When we last left Noobie Adventure Boy, he was stuck at a stop sign following the use of his advanced clutching technique. His odometer reads 00015 and we rejoin his saga as the traffic piles up behind him…

…WTF…crap…crap…Why won’t anything work. I have no headlight, no blinkers, starter won’t work….got to get out of the road…

I look over my shoulder and there are actually only two cars behind me. I duck-walk the bike across the two lanes at the intersection to the edge of the road. Unfortunately, I am still in traffic because the campus has a rope fence up to keep people from parking on the grass during sports events… There is about 40 yards of fencing before I can get to the shoulder of the road. Luckily, it’s all down hill. I get the bike rolling. I notice that my facial malady has gone into remission…

Having experienced bad starters on several of my cars, I followed this branch of my problem solving decision tree. Once I had enough momentum, I popped the clutch and the bike fired off. Great, its only 5:00pm, the shop is open until six or seven, I think? I head off to the shop, still no lights or tach… Cap’n, I got no power!

I pull up to the shop and park the bike, leaving it running in case the shop is closed. As I put the side stand down, the tack comes to life, as do the lights, and the blinker I apparently left on… Great, now I face the classic drop-off-to-the-mechanic situation…


Customer: It always does this when I drive it.

Mechanic: Doesn’t seem to be doing it now.

Customer: Happens all the time, don’t’ know why its not doing it now….


Right then, Carl walks around the corner from the shop headed back to the showroom. He got a puzzled and surprised look on his face as he recognized me. I was not clear if the question was “Why are you back?” or “How are you still alive?”

I explain the problem and the fact that it has “just fixed itself.” Fortunately, turning the bike off and changing its position brings the problem back. I roll it back to the shop, as Carl, like others on this site, has a newly installed plate and screws in his shoulder after he augered it in during a race a couple weeks back and is not up to bike pushing.

I am ushered into the showroom so the mechanics can do their black magic and cast the evil demons from my bike. After 20 minutes or so, the mechanic comes out and declares the beast cured.

I ask about the problem and get a funny pause.

Mechanic: “…..You blew a fuse”

Adventure Boy: “How do you think the fuse blew?”

M: “Well, the battery cable was a little loose, so when it wiggled, it sent a jolt…”

A: “Wow, thanks! I wanted to know what to check if that ever happens again.”

--narrator voice over: Yep folks, sounds like a cable didn’t get tightened during assembly and check over. But this won’t stop Noobie Adventure Boy--


Helmet on.

Bike Started (FINE_C every time – good adventure boy).

Back on the road again and headed for home. Symptoms of the facial problem become noticeable again as my cheeks begin to fill the helmet. I cruise home enjoying my new bike and doing my best to look cool… Tool…

When I get home, my dogs go friggin’ nuts as a Space Balls, big-headed monster rides up on a really strange looking bicycle…

As we leave Noobie Adventure Boy, he is safely home with his new bike. What adventure awaits him next? Tune in next time when we hear Noobie Adventure Boy say “Sweeeeeettttttt! My wife is having drinks with her friends and there is still two hours of day light left!”

DataDaddy screwed with this post 04-20-2005 at 10:26 AM
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Old 04-20-2005, 10:21 AM   #9
bacon
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DataDaddy,

Good luck with the new KLR, this is a good place to find lots of helpfull information on the KLR
http://www.bigcee.com/klr650faq.html.

That was my last bike befor I got the BMW adventure I have lots of others if you need them.

Latter
Tim
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Old 04-20-2005, 11:16 AM   #10
Tiras
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Awesome report man!

Reminds me of my first ride with my '04 KLR 650. It was my first bike and I bought it a few months before I got my motorcycle endorsement. So every few days I would start it up to make sure the juices all got flowing. And finally the day came when I got my endorsement, and for the next few nights I rode around my neighborhood a little after midnight for about 15 minutes or so. The reason I chose to ride this time of night was because I wanted to get used to riding and make sure I was comfortable before going out on some real roads. So on the second night after riding around for about 5 minutes I felt I had enough confidence and called my brother who lives about 4 miles away from me and told him I was coming over. So pulled out and started to head to his house at around 1am. After about a half a mile I'm feeling pretty good and getting that dumbass grin you mentioned... But then less than a mile later, my bike starts to sound funny... I pull in the clutch and then all I hear is silence... No engine noise... So luckily I was riding down hill at about 35mph and coasted to a stop under a dimly lit street light on a side street. I try starting it... Nothing. Im thinking WTF? It's got less than 20 miles and it's not working???? Then I open the gas cap and look inside, dry as a freakin bone. So under the streetlight I can barely see enough to switch it to reserve, try to start it... Nothing... Then I remember hearing about the super secret reserve on KLR650's... Tip it way over to the left and back up, then try once more to fire it up and BAM! It fires up so quick and so loud it probably woke up the whole neighborhood. I rode home at around 2am and called my brother and told him I wouldnt be coming over because I had run out of gas. So Im gussing the dealer put less than 1 gallon in my tank... Nice of them. Of course beeing a newbie myself I didn't even think of checking my gas with less than 20 miles.
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Old 04-20-2005, 01:25 PM   #11
ktmnate
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DataDaddy
......BIG SNIP.....Instead of a left turn out of the dealers, I take a right. This suggests another malady that may also be common. The left would have been the most direct path back to work. In what will become a recurring event, I subconsciously choose the long way to work. I sense that this will grow worse. I enjoy a nice, low-traffic loop back to the office, only riding for two miles with my right blinker on. It take twenty minutes to get back to the office which taking the short way is about two miles from the shop.

...BIG SNIP.....
It's already too late! Taking the long way is the first and only sign to the advanced condition known as adventuritus. I'm sorry but welcome abord.
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Old 04-20-2005, 01:49 PM   #12
richard cabesa
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DataDaddy
Watch as our hero duck-walks his bike across two lanes of traffic. More adventure to follow![/color][/size]
I bet when they taught you to do that in the MSF class you thought you'd never use it

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Old 04-20-2005, 02:36 PM   #13
DataDaddy OP
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Rally to the First Service Interval, 2005 - Part 3

When we last left Noobie Adventure Boy, he had just learned that his lovely wife would be out late having drinks with friends. He was on his one, alone against the wild... He could skip dinner and ride until dark! His odometer reads 00022 and we find our little adventurer getting ready to head out on a trip without destination...

With my wife out with her friends, I dump off my backpack, play with the dogs, and climb on the bike to tool around for a couple of hours before dark. I live outside the Starkville (pop 21,000) metropolitan area, so I don't have access to the multi-lane interstates packed with rush hour traffic like many of you enjoy. Mostly, I have easy access to nice quiet roads for some more familiarization riding.

Since everyone here raves about riding gravel roads, I decide to take the back way out of the neighborhood, enjoying a mile of gravel of various depths. That was entertaining. I just concentrated on looking up the road and maintaining a solid three-point grip on the bike. Since I didn't crash, I took the next gravel road and headed toward the Noxubee Wildlife Refuge.

Lots of gravel roads, with little, if any traffic. I occasionally rode gravel on my road bicycle for shits-and-giggles, so the motorcycle was not too different. Just relax as the thing wiggles under you...just like they said on AdvRider.

The refuge is the site for intensive management of the Red-Cockaded Woodpecker, an endangered, er, woodpecker.


I didn't see one.

I did however, have a nice evening of riding on stuff like this.


On my nice new machine.


I returned safely home. Odometer 00062. 40 miles (70% gravel). Riding gravel sucks.

As we leave Noobie Adventure Boy, he is tucked into bed dreaming of adventure riding; trips to Alaska, TransAmTrail, Baja, and Vance camping in his back yard. All the pinnacles of adventure riding experiences. Tomorrow, our Noobie Adventure Boy takes the daring ride to work., discovers that " INE_C" doesn't work as well, and gets new clothes. Stay tuned for the next exciting episode of "Rally to the First Service Interval, 2005".

DataDaddy screwed with this post 04-05-2006 at 02:48 PM
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Old 04-20-2005, 09:45 PM   #14
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Old 04-21-2005, 02:13 PM   #15
DataDaddy OP
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Rally to the First Service Interval, 2005 - Part 4

When we last left Noobie Adventure Boy, he was dreaming sweet AdvRider dreams. In this episode, he is told to make himself scarce on Saturday. We rejoin the action…

My wife is getting ready for a job interview, so I have been encouraged to get out of the house on Saturday. Can do!

Thursday and Friday I rode into work. Work isn’t any better, but getting to work is a lot better! Despite my dire predictions of daily rain for three months following the purchase of my new motorcycle, the weather has been great.

I call the shop and my clothes have come in. I got the JoeRocket Phoenix 3.0 mesh jacket and the AlterEgo pants. Not super adventure clothes, but works well for commuting. Good ventilation and the pants fit nicely over my work clothes. So I put the leather jacket away and now I look like this…a big yellow tool!


I learned that at work I could get all the way down to where I pull on to the 45mph four-lane before I run out of gas when I don’t cut it on!!! Also, a brighter headlight would be nice. Overdriving the headlight at 45-50 mph. The low beam really sucks, especially with bugs on the face shield.

The weekend is here so I’ll get more riding in then. I have 200 miles on the odometer, so the leaves 300 for this weekend before my first service at 500 miles.

Like a good little adventurer, I mount up my GPS and get ready to go. The is the second prototype mount.

On the first one, the duct tape covered the screen so I couldn’t read the GPS. The second prototype is going into production just send me $0.35 with $5.00 shipping and handling. I can probably match your bike color.

Everyone here talks about how riding in the mountains sucks, so I figured that I better go check it out from myself. I head out to Little Mountain on the Natchez Trace. I swing by a friend’s cabin on the way. The road into his place looks like this.

I depart there after a lunch of Vienna Sausages (weenies in a can – excellent adventure food) and roll on to the Trace and Little Mountain. I’ve read here about altitude changes affecting the way the bike runs, so I pay close attention especially as I reach the parking lot at the top. Elevation 505 ft. My bike seemed to handle it fine.

Here is the view from the top.

The sign says you can see for 20 miles on a clear day. I stood on a picnic table, so I think I saw 21 miles…

Here is the road down.

I use engine braking so I don’t overheat the brakes. It’s a pretty sweet road, minus the 20mph speed limit. Federal Performance Awards are extra special.

Took the next gravel road I came to and found this stream.


Followed to road a long and found some folks digging a big hole in the ground. Its the new lignite coal mine and Red Hills Power Plant. Read more here. Big trucks and even bigger dragline, with an 82-cubic-yard bucket.
http://www.ritchieconsultants.com/images/advrider/RedHills.jpg[/IMG]

Headed via random road choices guided by GPS toward Sturgis. Heard about motorcycles and Sturgis. Figured I would check around…

Found early evidence of motorcycling in Sturgis.


This is actually the cool sign for Bench Mark Works.


Some of the BMW riders here may know of Vetch. He does vintage restorations. Check out his museum here: http://members.aol.com/sweetlybee/museum.html

He is also associated with the Sturgis South Motorcycle Rally. 30,000 plus attendance last year.

I roll out of Sturgis and head back toward the Noxubee Refuge. Since its spring, the dogwoods are blooming…


I tool through there for a bit and notice more trees and water to photograph…


I turn the camera on myself. The adventurer and his new clothes…


I have ridden almost 150 miles today so its time to go home. I have to leave some mileage for tomorrow. Its been 3.5 days and I am rapidly approaching my 500 mile service.

I roll into the driveway freaking the dogs out again. On my way in, I find this...


Despite working on a major presentation for a job interview on Monday, my wife went out, bought beer, and had it waiting for my triumpant return. How much does that suck?

Here is my beer and the view off my back porch. Adventure sucks.

Tune in next time when Noobie Adventure Boy burns off the rest of the mileage so he can get the 500 mile service out of the way.

DataDaddy screwed with this post 04-05-2006 at 02:50 PM
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