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Old 07-30-2012, 08:44 PM   #16
cynicwanderer OP
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probably not going to happen... lol

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Cool, your company can buy you a new Beta 350 RR! SWEET!
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Old 07-31-2012, 10:21 PM   #17
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last weekend, I took my new (old) xr200r out for a 240mile dual sport ride with a good mix of street, fire roads and single tracks and railroad tunnels. it survived without troubles, so I feel confident that I now have an alternative ride, if needed.

picked up and transported all the way from indiana to california in the back of a rental....



up in the mountains



and through the tunnels



the xr200r is a blast to ride, although the stock front end is not very rigid. I'm planning a "fork" swap event soon. the xr350r will receive a xr400r front end, and the xr200r will receive the stiffer xr350 front end (and disc brake). or I might leave everything stock for that "vintage" bike riding experience...

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Old 08-02-2012, 11:31 AM   #18
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Enduro Withdrawal

I'm having some serious enduro withdrawal because of the summer hiatus. the last Enduro was May 20th and the next one in our area won't be until September 30th... that almost two whole months left... arghhhh
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Old 08-06-2012, 08:46 AM   #19
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Fork Swap-O-Rama

last weekend I took some time to swap forks on my two Enduro bikes. First, I put the XR350R forks on the old XR200R. This gives me firmer forks (because they have larger tubes), about the same travel and disc brakes up front. Even though the stem bearing fit and match up, the XR350R stem is a bit taller and the threads to tighten the top bearing didn't reach. A trip to Osh to add some washers, and problem solved:



I'm going to convert these forks to Racetech cartridge emulators.

the second swap, is to add a XR500R triple clamp to the XR350R and add some XR400R forks I got off ebay. they bolted right on, with no issues. However, since the XR400R has a larger diameter front axle, the old front wheel won't fit. so I had to steal the front wheel from my bucket bike project. Still needs some brake calipers to make it work, but now the XR350R has some cartridge forks.



Getting ready for the next Enduro, I reviewed some videos I found on youtube from last year's race.

MRANN WSRA Wild Horse Enduro Toulon NV (Part 1)

MRANN WSRA Wild Horse Enduro Toulon NV (Part 2)

MRANN WSRA Wild Horse Enduro Toulon NV (Part 3)

I might have to go and practice some rocky hillclimbs....
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Old 09-11-2012, 08:43 PM   #20
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more training to get ready for the rest of enduro season. on labor day, I rode trail #6 at Foresthill OHV with some buddies from work. the trail kicked our ass. here are some vids from the trail:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JCJTXpd4Whs

the first 2/3 were a little challenging, but not bad. it's the last part that was bad. it's a 15 mile loop that took us 5hrs. most of the time was spent on mile 10 to mil 11, of really technical uphill stuff. a video of my buddy attempting one of the obstacle:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JCJTXpd4Whs

I'll have to go back and improve my lap time...

last weekend another buddy of mine and I went to Georgetown OHV. we rode for several hours without mishaps. we rode a variety of trails including some gnarly technical section of trail #1. I was wearing a heart rate monitor to get an idea of how my conditioning is going, but I accidentally cleared the stats...

the chain on my xr200r who has been on "one more ride" status for the last 3-4 rides is now finally done. some of the rollers have come off and only the pin remains... most likely, this was the factory original O-ring chain from honda. since the bike sat for a long time outside, the O-rings had deteriorated on my first long ride and it wore quickly after that.

. I have new sprockets and chain ready to be installed.

I had swapped some xr400r forks on my xr350r. however, I didn't have a front wheel so I tried a xr650l wheel, which fits, but the brake doesn't match up with the calipers that I recently got. since I'm not likely to get a xr400r wheel before the end of the month, I installed the xr650l forks, which will still be a vast improvement over the original xr350r forks. having some trouble bleeding the brakes, maybe the master brake cylinder needs a rebuild.
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Old 09-27-2012, 09:14 PM   #21
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two three days until wildhorse in toulon, nv. both bikes (xr200r,xr350r) are pretty much ready to go, I'll probably use the xr350r, but bringing the xr200r as a backup bike.


http://www.ama-d36.org/Raceinfo/1039...ndR05flyer.pdf

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Old 10-01-2012, 06:22 AM   #22
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Old 10-01-2012, 06:29 AM   #23
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Old 10-06-2012, 09:45 AM   #24
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Toulon, NV

Ok, I loaded up the bikes on the old vintage truck and motored up the sierras over donner pass towards nevada. I stopped in Fernley (last place with a walmart until, I think Elko, I think) and got some coolant and oil for the truck, which uses both. Arrived at Toulon at dinner time. Now there really isn't much in Toulon, just an exit off I-80 and some enduro markers to a flat spot on the side of the valley where the pitts where. I later learned that Toulon was sort of infamous. apparently, someone from the donner party got murdered here...

I found a place to park the truck for my "camp" and proceeded to register for the race. I asked about the sound check and they just said "we only have a spark arrestor inspection"... ok, where was that ? "at the start. just be in compliance"... ok. I unloaded the bikes and noted that there was more oil on the xr350r fork, that must have bled out over the donner pass and with the extra pressure trapped in the forks due to the tie down and extra altitude, through the failing fork seal. oh well, I thought, the other fork is still OK, I'll take it out for a test ride. the bike felt great, however, I noticed that the front suspension was "topping out", i.e. they hit the stop when the extended... that's not good. since I didn't want to spend the rest of the night rebuilding the front forks, I decided to use the xr200r instead. took it out for a test ride, it's all good.

my row was 83... this is 1:23 after the key time of 9:00am, so 10:23. I adjusted the second time zone on my ironman wristwatch tied on my xr200r handle bars as "timekeeping" equipment. however, this race was in "National Format", which means timekeeping wasn't scored. you can only hour out when you're too late and you have to restart at some of the check that aren't tests back on your key time. so, it's pretty much just a hare scramble type event once you start getting behind. gas can in at 8:00, riders meeting at 8:30... wait for my start time talking with the neighbors at my camp site. I guess this was the pickup truck camping area, since all of the neighbors were camping in trucks and maybe a tent, as opposed to the "large diesel truck with huge toy hauler" camping area, which was about 90% of the rest of the pitt area.

at the start, we had our spark arrestor inspection, which consisted of one of the officials sticking the welding rod up the exhaust, about minute before our start time.... they didn't care wheter the motor was running or not, and I didn't see anyone actuall fail the inspection. the actual start was dead engine. the xr200r is a bitch to start when cold, but once it's warmed up it's a "half a kick starter". i.e. you just bump the starter a bit and it fires right up... which comes in real handy on the side of the hill when it's in gear and you only have enough footing for a "half kick" to get it started again. these races are usually in groups. the A class starts in early rows, followed by the B class riders a little while later and finally the C class, which started on row 65 in this enduro. the last row was 87, I think. so I started 4 minutes before the last riders... I wished some fellow riders I had met before good luck and proceeded to line up, introductions were made, exhausts were inspected and we were off...
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Old 10-06-2012, 02:54 PM   #25
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I'll check back in later!!! Good luck
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Old 10-06-2012, 11:58 PM   #26
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the first section was a bit of trail next to the road and I instantly remembered what I didn't like about desert racing.... whoops... I passed a couple of guys that dumped their bikes. after that, there were a couple of sections with relatively smooth sand that I could go a bit faster on, then some rocky sections... whenever there was a rock in the trail section, they put up a hazard sign. it was tempting to go off the trail to get some smoother ground during the whoopy parts, but that was risky, since the bushes can hide rocks (that are not marked when off trail).

much of the course consisted of going up the dry creek beds of the washes until the top and then turning sharply to go up a sandy hill over the saddle to the next wash and go back down the wash until it intersects a road to cut over to another wash. the rocky parts where comfortable, since that's what I ride all the time. the sandy uphills were a bitch. a xr200r does not make a good desert bike for this type of riding. usually there was not enough space to get up some speed in 2nd. so, when you realize you're going up one of these hills, I'd hit the gas in first and wind'er out until the rev limiter kicks, but on several hills it just didn't have enough to make it to the top without bleeding off enough speed for the front to start digging in. on one of the hills the sweep caught up with me, they asked me several times whether I wanted to keep going, which I wanted to. that's the problem being on row 83 when the last row is 87... one of the sweeps had some nostalgia of riding xr200r and asked if he could ride it up one of the more challenging hills. he made it, barely. the problems with the whoops in the sand were similar. when the whoops started getting big, I'd have to slow way down and then the front wheel to dig into the sand, and I'd lose control or tip over...

however, I was actually enjoying the ride. the hills were hard and the whoops sucked, but I really liked the terrain, saw some old mines, a scorpion. with the hills and the whoops slowing me down, I was getting progressively farther behind until I hour'ed out on the 4th check, which was the end of the first loop (about 50miles). I was finally figuring out some strategies for the hills, but they wouldn't let anyone who hour'ed out to start the second loop (another 68 miles). too bad.

back at the pits I loaded the bike and chatted with the neighbors until the gas truck came with my cans. defeated, I went home. a challenge with the truck going over the sierras. there was one section where they split the lanes and made the left lane run next to the opposing lanes. it was dark, really tight, curvy as hell with dividers on both sides, with barely enough room for a standard size truck with worn steering... RVs and trucks had to go on the other (right) lane, which I should have with my truck. it was about 15-18 miles of white knuckle time, worse than anything on the enduro course...

it sure would be nice to finish one of these things this season... three more enduros left !
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Old 10-07-2012, 04:03 AM   #27
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I enjoy your writing style,descriptive and interesting.

Best of luck in the rest of the season
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Old 10-07-2012, 08:43 AM   #28
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thanks !

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I enjoy your writing style,descriptive and interesting.

Best of luck in the rest of the season
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Old 10-07-2012, 08:54 AM   #29
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You'll finish. It's all about having fun, really, and you are doing that in spades
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Old 10-07-2012, 08:54 AM   #30
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Lessons Learned:

1. xr200r is not a desert bike.
2. high altitude messes with your front forks. bleed/check pressure, when changing altitude. maybe I'll take out the valve cores the next time I have to take the bike over a pass.
3. high altitude messes with your tire pressure. check pressure. it was way too high in the high desert.
4. deep whoops in sand suck, see #1
5. steep hills with sandy soil suck, see #1
6. have fun, don't worry about the sweep riding behind you.
7. having an old style seat (i.e. nut crusher), allows you to tape the route sheet to the tank.

BTW, I managed to lose one of the sweeps in one of the canyons. I ended up going off course to follow the creek bed a little higher to avoid the sandy hill, before cutting over, and he must have gone back when he didn't see me on the course anymore. at the next check, they were asking me whether I had seen the sweep, me being the last rider on the course and all...

I wish it was easier to post photos on here.
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