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Old 10-16-2012, 11:13 AM   #7
Thijs_B OP
Keeps on dreaming
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Joined: Oct 2011
Location: That floaty bit just north of France
Oddometer: 84
Cool2 Day 18 - Getting to Oslo

GPS track:

I have hardly taken any pictures of this day, so there's just going to be lots of text...

From Geilo I had two choices to get to Oslo, either go east then south following road 7, or go south and then east over road 40. Not really a lot of difference in distance between the both. I took the latter option, I wanted to go south a little bit more and maybe even add a day or two before going to Oslo.

A nice church at Uvdal.

An angel standing guard at the graveyard.

The weather was very nice, and I left the main road somewhere in the Numedal to follow a small road west towards the Hadangervidda park. The road quickly became more narrow, and the tarmac was in places horrible and full of holes. It wasn't long though before it ended completely and turned into a dirt road climbing up a mountain (again with toll!).

Somewhere halfway up that mountain the bike started to make a very loud noise. It sounded like there was a hole in my exhaust of something When I got at the top I checked my exhaust (as far as the bodywork allows) but I couldn't find anything. The noise was definitely there so I suspected maybe a leaky gasket or some small hole just out of sight. There was no change in power or throttle response so I just continued.

I did not take any pictures of that bit, I was preoccupied with the constant loudness of the engine. The scenery wasn't as exciting as it had been the days before anyway, but it was still very nice. Guess I'm a bit spoiled

I was so distracted thinking about the engine noise and consequences for my route that I forgot to think about fuel, and the bike suddenly stalled going up another hill. It would normally sputter a bit first, but this time it just switched off instantly. I think this meant a loss of compression (the single 650 is sensitive like that), and also pointed towards a leaky exhaust. I switched the tank to reserve, and luckily no problems to get to the next town.

Before shutting the engine down at the gas station I had another look at it and noticed one of the spark plugs was vibrating in its socket! I was almost happy to see it. I changed them last week on route 17, and hoped that it vibrated loose and caused the noise and loss of compression. So after refueling I took it out to have a look.

Maybe something wrong with the thread?

I put the old one in (I never throw these away), made sure it was secure, and started the bike. The noise was still there, so definitely the exhaust. Crap.

I made the decision that this was it. A leaky exhaust isn't that bad, but combined with a sudden loose spark plug was like the bike was telling me I had asked enough of it, and it was time to go home.

So I entered the fastest route to Oslo in the GPS, and got there somewhere in the afternoon using the (very nice!) route 37 and later the motorways. The spark plug had come a bit loose again. I was fearing for the thread in the cilinder head, so I found the office for the Colorline to book a ticket for the ferry to Kiel to reduce the kilometers left to ride. The ferry would depart in the afternoon the next day, so I would be home the day after that

I considered finding a workshop to have it checked out, but at that point I was just happy to return home after almost three weeks of constant riding, so I didn't want to risk being told I couldn't ride anymore so 'close' to home If the bike would fail I would just have to rely on my insurance to get me to a garage, but until then I wanted to at least try and make it home on my own effort.

I rode around the city for a bit, but it was rush hour and traffic was hell. I eventually escaped and found myself a nice spot in some woods south-east of the city.

This was only the second time I got the camera out that day, I wish I made more during the day...

The camping spot, only 50 meters from the road.

I could have gone deeper in the forest for more shelter from the road, but I didn't want to risk a non-starter in the morning with a cold engine and a lack of compression (it has always been a hard starter anyway). From here I could push it back to the road if that would be necessary.

Getting artsy-fartsy with some moss.

Lots of mushrooms, it was definitely full on autumn.

Like a cup, the holy grail maybe...

Getting under the hood.

'Shrooms everywhere, looks a bit like an enchanted forest.

Bart and Jasmin (who I met a week ago) were already in Oslo, and we send some texts back and forth that we would try to meet the next day to catch up!

Daily achievements:
350 km travelled in 05:15 with 70 km/h average. Still 970 km away from my own bed!
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