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Old 06-09-2010, 05:46 PM   #361
LXIV-Dragon
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RR just gets better & better.....

Jay,

Really enjoying the trip write up. Thank you for sharing

I see a couple of the guys above (in RR) seem to have a number of their vest and hemet - guess this is their tag number? A legal requirement?

Ride safe,
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Old 06-09-2010, 10:25 PM   #362
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LXIV-Dragon
Jay,

Really enjoying the trip write up. Thank you for sharing

I see a couple of the guys above (in RR) seem to have a number of their vest and hemet - guess this is their tag number? A legal requirement?

Ride safe,
Yup, local riders in Colombia need to have their license plate number on the front and back of a reflective vest and also on their helmet. Police will stop and hassle them if they dont or if the numbers dont match. If you carry a passenger they too need a vest with the number on it.

They say it's for safety, first to identify quick bike theft and to also have more reflective surfaces on riders so that they're visible to trucks and buses and second, I think it comes Medellin's hey days when gang members would routinely tour the city, 2 up on a bike and pick out targets, so this helped police to quickly identify legal citizens from gang members.
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Old 06-10-2010, 09:17 AM   #363
SS in Vzla.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jammin
I'm going try for my Venezuela visa again in Lima and if not, then Manaus. Really want to see the tepuis.
If all you want to see are the Tepuis, you can cross the border without a visa and stay in the area surrounding Santa Elena de Uairen (La Gran Sabana). There are very few police checks in that area, I can send you the gps coordinates for where they are located so you can avoid them and normally there is "free transit" from the border to the Gran Sabana.... Once you get inland from the GS (Km 88 Las Claritas) there are more police checks on the road that will probably check your papers (although motorcycles are very rarely stopped in Vzla... of course YMMV ... Then agian, even though there is an airport at Santa Elena with daily flights to Canaima Lagoon and Angel Falls, I doubt you'd be able to get there without a visa... but you never know

Of course, the PITA of doing that is going back through the Amazon river boat...
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Old 06-12-2010, 05:20 AM   #364
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SS in Vzla.
If all you want to see are the Tepuis, you can cross the border without a visa and stay in the area surrounding Santa Elena de Uairen (La Gran Sabana).
Interesting info. Thanks. I'll try and stay legal

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Saw the beautiful Quilotoa crater lake, south of Quito, very beautiful. Also got clear views of Volcan Cotapaxi.

Took a day ride to Banos yesterday and impressed by puffing Volcan Tungurahua. Humbling to be at its base and marvel at its grandeur.
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Old 06-12-2010, 07:53 AM   #365
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Jay,

I've been following along with your reports since your overnight with us in Paso Robles, CA. Yesterday I heard your interview on Side Stands Up. All good stuff! Seems like you're having a fabulous time.

Maybe I missed it but I've not seen anything about how your solar panel is working out. Has is been useful? Still working? Likely with your couch surfing success you've not done any/much camping so solar charging may be a non-issue.

Our best wishes for continued grand and safe travels!
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Old 06-13-2010, 10:11 PM   #366
Jammin OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by advrider58
Jay,

I've been following along with your reports since your overnight with us in Paso Robles, CA. Yesterday I heard your interview on Side Stands Up. All good stuff! Seems like you're having a fabulous time.

Maybe I missed it but I've not seen anything about how your solar panel is working out. Has is been useful? Still working? Likely with your couch surfing success you've not done any/much camping so solar charging may be a non-issue.

Our best wishes for continued grand and safe travels!
Hey John, how're you doing? Thanks for following along and listening in.

Yup, Solar panel still working, but as you say, haven't needed to use it much, yet. I checked that the battery trickle feature works well but needs constant strong sunlight. Even if some clouds come over, output drops right away. The panel hasn't cracked yet, so that's a good sign. Have hit some speed bumps at speed (invisible with the lighting conditions) and other pot holes, so my mounting strategy has worked well, so far (clamps with RTV silicone to dampen it).

It doesn't put out enough amps (only 0.6 A) to run the Solstice LED lights, so that idea is out, but should still be enough to charge my netbook.

And yeah, I've been staying with people most of the nights, and haven't camped yet in South America, so we'll see. Maybe in Bolivia or in the Amazon it'll get more use.

___________________

Rode past Chimborazo Volcano and it's quite impressive. Was up at 4,300 m (14,000 ft) and looking up at the snow capped cone was quite a sight. Nice road to Cuenca. Staying with Juan from HU. Ate some Cuy (guinea pig) today, quite tasty actually.
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Current Ride Report: Global South | Past Trips: CDR '09, Alaska '08, Mexico '07 | YouTube Videos
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Old 06-18-2010, 12:18 PM   #367
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Crossed into Peru at Macara. Wanted to cross at La Basla but recent rains and local rider said it could be quite muddy. Met a German couple traveling on 2 BMW F650 GS's and traveled with them last 2 days. Camped out in a small village on the way to Bagua Grande last night and today, staying with CouchSurfer Julio in BG.

Having some electrical problems. Keep blowing a fuse somewhere, but it's only my accessories, so it's not affecting the running of the bike. LED lights keep going out. Need to diagnose.

Want to head to Chachapoyas but road might be blocked by recent landslide... Heading towards Cajamarca and Hauraz.
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Old 06-18-2010, 01:59 PM   #368
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Hola Jay! I see you met Holger and Anja. Tell them I said hello.

Vince
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Old 06-18-2010, 06:16 PM   #369
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crashmaster
Hola Jay! I see you met Holger and Anja. Tell them I said hello.

Vince
Hola Vince, yup, nice couple. Got some insight into what it's like to be on the road for a long time. They have one humongous tent

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Electrical gurus, need your help:

So I have a Centech AP-2 Fuse Box with switched and un-switched ports. The positives from both type of ports goes thru a relay and then an-line 30 A fuse to the battery positive terminal. For un-switched I have my GPS and switched is my main headlight, 12V charging ports and Power for Solstice LED lights.


(image taken from easternbeaver.com)

The past two days I've blown the main 30 A Centech fuse (on orange wire above), rendering switched and un-switched ports not working. Previously when my LED lights weren't working, it was because the individual fuse for the LED power was shorting with the frame and that particular fuse was only shorted. Now, the main fuse is blowing and none of the fuses on the individual ports are blowing.

The first main Centech fuse to go happened while riding (crossing into Peru). Road was bumpy, so maybe something touched and shorted. I put in a new fuse that night and made sure everything was working. Within a few miles of starting the next day, the main Centech fuse blew again. The bike's main fuse hasn't been affected and neither has the fuse for the Stebel, which is connected directly to battery (not thru Centech) and neither has my battery voltage monitor, also connected direct to battery.

I can't see anything apparent that could be shorting the main power to Centech. If it was one of my accessories that was shorting, then that individual fuse would blow. What does it mean that the main Centech fuse is blowing? I checked the switching lead wire and no visible damage (exposed copper). Could the relay be going bad?
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Old 06-18-2010, 06:45 PM   #370
WOXOF
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Hi Jay

I would look for a short between the primary and the secondary fuses in the circuit. Look for loose connections and wire chaffing.
Carefully check the insulation where it comes in contact with the frame or other metal parts. It may look good initially, but when flexed can show hidden breaks

Also don't rule out a short after the secondary fuses either. If the short creates enough of a draw the primary fuse can blow leaving the secondary fuse intact.

Good luck. Electrical gremlins can be a pain.
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Old 06-18-2010, 06:58 PM   #371
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The Centech has metal housing, check if the hot wire from the 30 A fuse is making contact by the bumpity roads to the housing and this to some ground... because of that, the high current would be going from the battery trough the 30A fuse and right to ground, that would be killing the 30A and no accesories fuses.






Quote:
Originally Posted by Jammin
_______________________


Electrical gurus, need your help:

So I have a Centech AP-2 Fuse Box with switched and un-switched ports. The positives from both type of ports goes thru a relay and then an-line 30 A fuse to the battery positive terminal. For un-switched I have my GPS and switched is my main headlight, 12V charging ports and Power for Solstice LED lights.


The past two days I've blown the main 30 A Centech fuse (on orange wire above), rendering switched and un-switched ports not working. Previously when my LED lights weren't working, it was because the individual fuse for the LED power was shorting with the frame and that particular fuse was only shorted. Now, the main fuse is blowing and none of the fuses on the individual ports are blowing.

The first main Centech fuse to go happened while riding (crossing into Peru). Road was bumpy, so maybe something touched and shorted. I put in a new fuse that night and made sure everything was working. Within a few miles of starting the next day, the main Centech fuse blew again. The bike's main fuse hasn't been affected and neither has the fuse for the Stebel, which is connected directly to battery (not thru Centech) and neither has my battery voltage monitor, also connected direct to battery.

I can't see anything apparent that could be shorting the main power to Centech. If it was one of my accessories that was shorting, then that individual fuse would blow. What does it mean that the main Centech fuse is blowing? I checked the switching lead wire and no visible damage (exposed copper). Could the relay be going bad?
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Old 06-18-2010, 07:31 PM   #372
Adv Grifter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jammin
Electrical gurus, need your help:
I can't see anything apparent that could be shorting the main power to Centech. If it was one of my accessories that was shorting, then that individual fuse would blow. What does it mean that the main Centech fuse is blowing? I checked the switching lead wire and no visible damage (exposed copper). Could the relay be going bad?
I remember the dash and accessory set up you designed from early on in your prep. Nice job for sure but I always wondered when it would act up.
It's hard to beat Japanese factory wiring looms for long life reliability.
I like your set up but thought it was quite complex for RTW travel. I like KISS systems, but I'm not a EE, but have managed a few field repairs in the dark. The good news is .. you built it so I'm sure you'll find the problem in there somewhere.

Something is being chafed, pinched, corroded, or wet in there. Maybe when you turn steering or hit bumps its shorting out?
I'm thinking you'll have to take it all apart in reverse order, piece by piece to find the bug. I'm assuming you've got a VOM with you?

The really good news is it does not seem to be affecting starting or the engine running. If you were on a BMW you'd be in trouble right about now!

!Suerte! take your time. Patience!
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Old 06-20-2010, 06:11 AM   #373
Jammin OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WOXOF
Also don't rule out a short after the secondary fuses either. If the short creates enough of a draw the primary fuse can blow leaving the secondary fuse intact.

Good luck. Electrical gremlins can be a pain.
Thanks for the info. I looked, but couldn't find any shorts.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ruedaloca
The Centech has metal housing, check if the hot wire from the 30 A fuse is making contact by the bumpity roads to the housing and this to some ground... because of that, the high current would be going from the battery trough the 30A fuse and right to ground, that would be killing the 30A and no accesories fuses.
Good tip. I inspected the housing and nothing seems loose to make contact.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Adv Grifter
I remember the dash and accessory set up you designed from early on in your prep. Nice job for sure but I always wondered when it would act up.
It's hard to beat Japanese factory wiring looms for long life reliability.
I like your set up but thought it was quite complex for RTW travel. I like KISS systems, but I'm not a EE, but have managed a few field repairs in the dark. The good news is .. you built it so I'm sure you'll find the problem in there somewhere.

Something is being chafed, pinched, corroded, or wet in there. Maybe when you turn steering or hit bumps its shorting out?
I'm thinking you'll have to take it all apart in reverse order, piece by piece to find the bug. I'm assuming you've got a VOM with you?

The really good news is it does not seem to be affecting starting or the engine running. If you were on a BMW you'd be in trouble right about now!

!Suerte! take your time. Patience!
Yeah, I know it was quite complex but actually, everything in the switch box has been working as designed. I do have a VOM.

__________________

I bypassed the Centech fuse box and setup individual in-line fuses for the 4 things I need (headlight, LED lights, GPS and Seat power for air compressor). Went on a test ride after the setup and everything seems to be working fine.

And actually, I'm drawing less power now than when things were routed through the Centech. A problem developed soon after the trip started where if only the main headlight was on, my battery voltage monitor was dipping down to 12.7 V, not healthy. I resorted to turning off the headlight when not needed. Not really safe, but didnt want a dead battery. When running LED lights, battery was showing around 13.6, healthy. Now, after bypassing Centech, with main headlight, showing around 13.4 and with LED lights also, showing around 13.3. Still good. I think something was up with the Centech circuit, something was drawing power somewhere.

I'll see how things go over the next few days.

Thanks for your help

Off to Chachapoyas and the ruins at Keulap.
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Old 06-20-2010, 08:09 AM   #374
WOXOF
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Sounds like you found the problem. - The Centech fuse block.

I've never used a Centech fuse block so I looked it up on the web and came across this image.



Looking at it, the fuse block 1) is on a circuitboard and 2) the hot and ground circuit paths are only a few millimeters apart in places.
You mentioned that you had a problem early on with a 1 volt loss and now don't have the 1 volt loss without the fuse block.

I'm wondering if the circuit board was compromised somewhere causing a voltage leak resulting in a 1 volt drop and now with all the vibration has gotten to the point where it shorts and blows the fuse between it and the battery.


Just a thought.


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Old 06-22-2010, 02:07 PM   #375
Jammin OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WOXOF
Sounds like you found the problem. - The Centech fuse block.

Looking at it, the fuse block 1) is on a circuitboard and 2) the hot and ground circuit paths are only a few millimeters apart in places.
You mentioned that you had a problem early on with a 1 volt loss and now don't have the 1 volt loss without the fuse block.

I'm wondering if the circuit board was compromised somewhere causing a voltage leak resulting in a 1 volt drop and now with all the vibration has gotten to the point where it shorts and blows the fuse between it and the battery.
Yup, that's it. And you're probably right, something made a connection and caused a voltage leak. I'll take a better look in Lima.
Everything's been working good past few days. No more shorts and battery is healthy. Thanks

____________________

Spent 2 days in the northern Peruvian highlands and the roads have been amazing. Saw the ruins at Kuelap, impressive stone fortress. Then dirt roads, hugging the cliff with no guard rails for about 300 kms up and down the Andes. Spectacular scenery. Got lots of awesome video but probably only get it posted much later, since it takes a lot of time.

In Cajamarca, staying with CouchSurfer Adam, heading down to Chimbote and then Canon del Pato.
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