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Old 07-01-2015, 05:37 PM   #1
Prodigium OP
Ad Astra
Joined: Dec 2006
Location: Portland OR during school year. SW MI in summer
Oddometer: 117
Long ride

I have two scooters, a '87 Honda CH-150 Elite that I really like and a 2009 Suzuki Burgman 400 with 13k miles that I also really like. I teach in the Portland, OR suburbs and next summer I'm thinking of doing a loop of the US; Portland to San Fran, on to LA, up to Vegas (never been there) then off east to Columbia, SC to visit daughter and up the east coast visiting friends and family, then to Michigan for same then on the northern route back to Oregon via Minneapolis and Seattle. Before I leave I'm having the valves adjusted, replacing the belt and installing Dr. Pulley weights, replacing the rear tire. I've done long distance before, but any suggestions for me?
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Old 07-01-2015, 05:52 PM   #2
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Joined: Aug 2005
Location: Spring Mountain Range
Oddometer: 4,162
Have fun. Drink a lot of water when you stop for gas. Get AAA. Make sure your battery is in good shape. If it is original it could go at any time.

Due to age, coolant flush, if not done recently. Brake fluid too.
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Old 07-01-2015, 09:07 PM   #3
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Joined: Sep 2009
Location: Land O Drizzle
Oddometer: 134
Depending on what time of year consider mesh gear.
a sweatshirt, mesh and frogg toggs have taken me (on shorter trips) from mountain passes to sweltering high desert. (Welcome to Washington).
Wool socks breath and don't stink as fast as cotton or plastic.
Travel with water and a bag or two of salty peanuts or something similar you prefer as well as a couple five hour energy type things someplace accessible that won't get too hot.
The five hours can bail you out if you're fading someplace you can't stop, and sometimes warm water and peanuts can be a godsend pick me up when you're in the middle of nowhere.
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Old 07-01-2015, 11:39 PM   #4
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Joined: Oct 2010
Location: West coast British Columbia
Oddometer: 700
A high quality synthetic is a good idea so that you can stretch out your oil change interval. You can use car oil instead of expensive bike oil because you don't have a wet clutch on your scooter. I would also carry a Qt along. There will be times when the scoot is working hard or temperatures are very high.

Even if your oil is only half a QT low, the temp of the remaining oil will go through the roof. That can increase oil consumption, which leads to still hotter oil etc. keep it topped up.

65 instead of 80 will allow you to go much further in a day. You will be much less tired and will go much further between gas stops. Also, your fuel capacity is limited. A small can of gas is a really good idea. 400's don't like 80 mph. They'll do it, but you can kiss your engine life good-bye. It's the difference between 40,000 miles on your scoot and 100,000.

Don't get dehydrated it's really bad news. Been there, done that. Drink twice as much as you think you need. Also I've been known to sack out on a picnic table with my helmet on for 15 minutes or so. It's better to be alert and refreshed. Proper motorcycle rain gear is a really good idea, not for the wet but to block a sudden cold snap. Good rain gear with velcro can do an amazing job of keeping out the cold and it's light and easy to store as backup if you're not expecting the cold.

I like to have a can of tire sealant. The tire guys hate it, but more than once it has got me to the next town.

Take an Air Hawk with you. You may only need it for that last 100 miles of a long day; but when you really need it, it will feel like it has saved your life.

Sounds like a great trip.
Check out my riding story blog at:

Phipsd screwed with this post 07-02-2015 at 12:15 AM
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Old 07-02-2015, 03:58 AM   #5
Clueless n00b
Joined: Sep 2013
Location: Newcastle, England
Oddometer: 406
Get yourself one of these

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Old 07-02-2015, 11:20 PM   #6
Let me take this duck off
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Joined: Apr 2009
Location: BC
Oddometer: 3,190
sign up for AMA membership for 50 bucks with auto renew and get free towing .
1) carry the old belt / rollers just encase
2) sheep skin for the seat .maybe take the seat off and use a sharp knife cut out the small hump in the middle . Of course you have to take the cover off to. This way you can side back more .
3) 2 - 1 L camping stove fuel bottles for gas
4) If you don t have camping gear . Head to . It s were back sells there returns. I ve pick up some good deals there.
5) Co2 tire patch kit . I think elite 150 is tubeless?
6) Cheek out the free camping spot thread on ADV since there is load of people whom may put you up if you nice to them.
7) Don't take to much stuff. Roll it up instead of folding since it takes up less room.
8) Go have fun and talk to people . you never know what or whom you ll end up meeting .
9) Check out the anti freeze with one of those auto testers to see if it good. With the weather so hot it will help keep it cool.
Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body,but rather to skid in sideways totally worn out shouting WHAT A RUSH, WHAT A RIDE.
"Life is a tragedy when seen in close-up, but a comedy in long-shot." Charlie Chaplin
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Old 07-03-2015, 02:19 AM   #7
Studly Adventurer
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Joined: Sep 2008
Location: Ipswich Queensland
Oddometer: 900
Don't go longer than 2 hours at a time,get off, walk around for a couple of minutes,take a photo,have a drink.
Just move your whole body around for a few minutes.
If you feel like your getting tired stop!
Fatigue kills just as surely as alcohol.
Relax and enjoy.
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Old Yesterday, 04:43 AM   #8
Prodigium OP
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Joined: Dec 2006
Location: Portland OR during school year. SW MI in summer
Oddometer: 117
Thanks, all.

Thanks, guys.
Iím going to take the 400 Burgman next summer. I got severely dehydrated in the past so when I got my BMW GS1100 I mounted two bicycle bottle holders to the windshield mounting bars. That helped, and that they were right in my face it was easier to remember to drink. I have AAA already for the Mini and scooters. Iíve found that 5 hour energy is very helpful on long trips. I drink a third in the morning, a third at lunch and Iíve not gotten drowsy since. Iíve got good raingear, and Iím looking for a good saddlebag sort of luggage. I have an air seat like the airhawk.
Taking the old belt is a good idea, as well as carefully chosen tools. Iíll have the valves adjusted, change the final drive oil and brake fluid changed last month. Just before I leave as well as change the belt; is there a better than stock belt, Kevlar perhaps, available? Iíll also install Dr. Pulley rollers/sliders. The nice thing about Dr. Pulley sliders (I have them in my 150, which may be part of the reason it has gone a GPS 67mph) is they push the pulleys closer together to give a bit higher final ratio so the revs drop some. Speaking of revs, I already use Red Line oil, but due to the extended high revs Iíll be running Iím thinking of a real racing oil. For years Iíve been reading a Formula One technical magazine (those engines top out at 17,000 rpm) and there is an oil in there Iím interested in. The Burgman engine has a built in 'oil to coolant' oil cooler, which is nice. For a decade Iíve used a coolant in everything, Evanís Waterless coolant, and been very happy with it. It doesnít boil till 375F, so I run my cooling system (gasp, sacrilege) with zero pressure. That makes the job of hoses and seals easier, and any leak will not be under pressure. It also is very slippery so that helps water pump lubrication. Since there is no water there are no corrosion issues or those deposits water leaves in coolant passages. Gas can, yes Iíll do that. In the past Iíve been guilty of being a banzai tourer so Iíll have to remember to stop and get off. I think a 500 mile test ride would be good.
Again, thanks everybody and if you think of any more suggestions Iíll appreciate hearing them. Been a long time since I cruised around on my Beemer.
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