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Old 04-10-2012, 03:18 PM   #1
DesertSweeper OP
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Location: Dubai, United Arab Emirates
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Africa - The Return

Fellow adventurers the adventure continues…Cape Town to Nairobi on the same Honda Rallye 450’s some mate’s and I rode from Nairobi to Cape Town last year.

For those who didn’t follow the previous part of this journey you can catch up here:
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=685969&highlight=africa+revisited

and if you are further interested in another recent adventure of ours the Cambodia trip is here:
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=737344&highlight=long+drowned

The first part of this story may be a little technical for some but as usual the story will quickly degenerate into the stuff of adventures. Watch this space!
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Old 04-11-2012, 06:22 AM   #2
bjmoloney
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Go on the lads!!! Best of luck on yer merry way. :-))
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Old 04-12-2012, 06:15 AM   #3
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we'll be here following you
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Old 04-14-2012, 10:44 AM   #4
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Looking forward to some pictures...

Nic
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Old 04-14-2012, 10:45 AM   #5
camwaugh
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Good luck Wayne, have fun as I am sure you will. Mr. BLian will ensure that....
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Old 05-07-2012, 10:31 AM   #6
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The outline

I am running around semi-blind in a downpour in Johannesburg trying to save the exposed innards of my trusty bike from the deluge above. Brian’s knee is the size of a football, his luggage is lost in Nairobbery, the Carnets were left in Cape Town and my right eye is bloodshot from getting a full blast of carb-cleaner squirted into it. And we are many days past our departure. But as always I am ahead of myself and must return to the start of the story.

I always used to chuckle at the vast army of support-staff the McGreggor/Boorman saga’s employ to organise and facilitate their journey. The pretty girls in the back ground making phone calls with impressive maps on the wall, local “fixers” and meetings with important looking people. All of which stretches over months and months. Who needs all that – lets just go and ride from the start to the finish and see what happens in between! But they are very clever people that lot. And I am not very bright at all…. Well the fact is – when you mix time deadlines into adventure riding it does need a degree of planning…which I just never do…

As those who have read my previous blog will know the bikes have been sitting in CapeTown South Africa waiting for something to happen. They carried three mates and I down from Nairobi over some superb terrain and now their carnets are going to expire. I could ship them back in crates (sacrilege) or I can just ride them all the way back! So much more fun. So mere weeks before D-Day I put the word out for inmates to join the madness and Brian of many previous adventures immediately books two legs. My Brother will start and take the bikes up to Johannesburg where an as yet unfound rider will join the journey north to meet Brian in an as yet unsure city…good planning from the word go!

But all this assumes the bikes will actually start and happily frolic north. The truth is the bikes were hammered on the way down and these are old 450’s that need loads of TLC. This will be their third Africa trip and they have raced the Desert Challenge many times. They are tired. They need attention. So I will fly early and rebuild the sick bits and then everything else will just work itself out sort-of.

I never did do an equipment appraisal on the last blog but to summarise most of the kit just didn’t cut it. Amongst the casualties were a Garmin 62s, Trail-Tech trip computer, oxford luggage and most of the bikes themselves. They all just rattled themselves into paperweights. So lets go with another Garmin (when will I learn) but a big change is to try out the Giant Loop luggage system, discussed in these very forums. The other big step is to chuck out the insanely unreliable Honda stators and replace them with aftermarket jobbies. I settle on the Ricky Stators. Oh and a borrowed rear Safari tank to get more fuel on board to increase our range. There is no fuel in Malawi…So armed with new gear and spares I set about rebuilding the bikes in cape Town with the help of my Brother and his army of wonderful friends who tackle various jobs with a smile.
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Old 05-07-2012, 01:03 PM   #7
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Day 1 – strip down

We are hosted by the very generous and patient Peter and Carolyn who give us their lock-up garage to work in. I assure them this will only take a few days. But then this is Cape Town where there is no official speed-limit as everyone has fallen asleep and no longer bothers to actually drive anywhere.
We begin by stripping the bikes down to assess the workload. Memories come back of all those niggles on the way down. There is much to be done. These bikes are not built for adventure riding. They are thoroughbred race machines, fussy and temperamental.

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Old 05-07-2012, 09:23 PM   #8
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Day 2 - Naked Bikes

Although the forks feel fine we pull them out and send them to a local workshop for a rebuild. They have come a long way and must go back even longer.




Trying the bofrrowed Safari Rear tank for fit and feel

Things seem to progressing smoothly so far...
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Old 05-08-2012, 08:38 AM   #9
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Day 3

We set about redoing the electrics and replacing rusted grubby nuts and bolts with shiny new CRF Bolt kit versions.

So that’s where it goes…


Bling bling
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Old 05-08-2012, 08:45 AM   #10
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To ease the load on the battery we replace the indicators with LED units


Baby indicators


Local Adult-shop in Cape Town with “repairs”
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Old 05-08-2012, 08:56 AM   #11
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Top-end rebuild

As I had limped into Cape Town last year with tow-starts becoming the norm I have decided to rebuild my top-end with a shiny new piston and a refurbed head:


crusty old piston


crusty old adventurer


Shiny new piston


A rare moment of cleanliness


The other crusty old adventurer - polishing his swingarm as one does
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Old 05-08-2012, 02:28 PM   #12
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Day 8 – Yawn

Yes its been 8 days now and we are starting to eat into riding time. This town is insanely sloooow. By now we have successfully spread a large quantity of bike related ooze into our host’s garage. Still they smile and are happy. Amazing. It’s time to ease the Ricky Stators into their new home. I am hoping this will once and for all cure our Stator woes (see last trip where we blew through three oem Honda Stators).


Hopeful happiness


this is where a stator lives when it's at work


this is what spins around it to make juice and create timed pulses of electricity for the explosions that ultimately make the wheel go 'round


Fear and Loathing - seasoned adventurers will know what this is...it is what used to be thread in the engine but now sits in the hand...time for a heli-coil...
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Old 05-09-2012, 07:44 AM   #13
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Day 10 – Test flight

Finally one bike is ready to test. Brother Bowen juices her up and I do a test ride down to the local coffee shop to get a caffeine boost…


Happy juice


Happy juice


Perky sweetness
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Old 05-09-2012, 08:02 AM   #14
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Bush bars

As one of the bikes’ fuel tanks was punctured by a thorn bush I had the idea of using mini “bush-bars” that would serve to both support tank-bags and allow plastic strips to be cable tied to them to protect the plastic from nasty’s. The finished bike goes over to the incredible Gavin who is fabricating the concept and our attention turns to the remaining bike. Gotta fit the safari-tank and the lowered under foot-peg exhaust:


Gavin's input amongst many


Safari tanks and titanium exhaust being fitted


Of course the kit didnt come with the exhaust mounting bracket so we had to fabricate something to sort the issue. Gavin to the recue once again! A local fabrication shop alu-welded it up for us.

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Old 05-09-2012, 08:46 AM   #15
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