Dakar Dazed - countdown to bankruptcy!

Discussion in 'Racing' started by JMo (& piglet), Sep 1, 2010.

  1. JMo (& piglet)

    JMo (& piglet) Gone a bit Baja

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    Yes - Yamaha UK have been very supportive of my various projects, including the Tenere for Heroes-Legend last year... I was all set to buy a new one at discount (having tested all the modifications on my original bike) when I realized that my existing bike was still good as new, despite having spent 6 months and 23,000 miles in the USA...

    Certainly those exploits have inspired others to try/buy the Tenere, and there are quite a few being modified in a similar way now with WP forks (and 18" rear wheels - Talon tell me they have sold a number now based on my original prototype) - in fact a friend of mine Bernard prepped his Tenere in a similar fashion and is racing Heroes-Legend this year as we speak!

    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=630054


    As for the WR, obviously it helps that I also have an editorial outlet through TBM, so Yamaha will get additional publicity that way over the next few months, but I like to think I already have a good relationship with them, and hope that will continue into next season!

    J x
  2. bigborefan

    bigborefan Making new friends

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    I love TBM. I do not subscribe, but I get lucky and find it ever now and then at the book store here in the US. It is a great magazine. Definitely a lot different than your typical American mag. American dirt bike mags are written for 12 year olds I think.

    I will dig through my old issues and look for your articles.
  3. monkeyfez

    monkeyfez Enabler....

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    forgive my ignorance but what is TBM?
  4. JMo (& piglet)

    JMo (& piglet) Gone a bit Baja

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    Hey Monkey' - don't worry, I thought I'd mentioned it before (it's probably buried somewhere in this thread) - TBM is "Trail Bike Magazine" - a UK dirt bike magazine (if you hadn't guessed by the title x) that I write for on a freelance basis... It is also available in the US, typically through Barnes & Noble, normally a month after the UK cover date.

    In the past they have run series about my two trips to the US, traveling in Europe & Morocco, and most recently (August 2010 issue, with a Husaberg on the cover) has my story from the Heroes-Legend (Paris-Dakar) Rally on the Tenere last year...

    If you have more money than sense, and want to order back-issues:

    April/May/June 2008 issues feature my first trip around the Western US on an XR650R I bought and prepped there.

    Nov/Dec '08/Jan '09 is my trip around Europe & Morocco on the XR650R (having shipped it back home from the US).

    Dec 2009 has a feature about the build of my Rally Tenere (I didn't write this one, the editor interviewed me about it).

    Jan/Feb/Mar 2010 is my series about taking the Tenere across the USA and back (including the TAT, Moab, Rubicon, Death Valley, Gulf coast, Daytona, Deal's Gap etc)

    And Aug 2010 has the feature about the Tenere on Heroes-Legend last year...

    You can order back issues through their website: trailbikemag.com

    J x

    ps. if you really want to go back in time, get hold of the Jan '07 issue, which has the first feature I wrote for them - about a friend and I taking two bikes and a Range Rover Sport to Morocco - some excellent photos in that one x
  5. Deadly99

    Deadly99 Fast and Far

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    How are you mending ? Going to be good to go come January?

    Dakar.......you must be freaking stoked :)
  6. JMo (& piglet)

    JMo (& piglet) Gone a bit Baja

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    I'm certainly freaking... there is still an awful lot up in the air at the moment, and only three weeks before everything has to ship...

    The good news is I got back on a bike for the first time today - took my new WR out for 100 miles to break it in, and I really want to get a few hundred miles on that spare engine before I strip the bike next week...

    I must say, it was still painful getting on and off the bike, but riding (on the road) was ok at least... just great to be back on two wheels really!

    My heel (that was broken) has never been the problem really, it is more my ankle joint and all the ligaments that were damaged - that is where the pain is still... I'm doing my best to walk without crutches now, and hopefully get some strength back in those muscles... I'd also like to get out on the mountain bike in the next week or two too... let's hope all that works, as the prospect of pushing a stuck bike through sand dunes with my foot in this shape does not bare thinking about!

    J x
  7. skibum69

    skibum69 slave to gravity

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    I think maybe I'll take out the 640 and see if Chapters has a copy here?
  8. DakarDreamer

    DakarDreamer Adventurer

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    Hi Jenny

    Been meaning to check out your progress since returning from Morocco. Bummer about the heel :eek1 but glad to hear it's on the mend. (I did broke my heel/ankle and knee in a climbing accident a few years a go so know it's bugger to get full mobility back - keep moving it over the next few weeks!)

    Toby and I were discussing the different WRF set ups with Martin Wittering at Rally du Maroc and the WRFs now top of the list for our 2012 Dakar bid (unless we can spring for a couple of Factory KTM450RRs!)- but yours is now looking sweet! :clap

    Let us know about sponsorship opportunities and we would be interested in offers on your spare or Rally bikes when you get back :ear (As well as tapping you for all your contacts and hard won experience! :lol3 )

    Hope the next couple of weeks goes well (as it will fly by!)
    cheers
    Jago
  9. spick

    spick Adventurer

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    Watching this thread as well.

    Jenny, what are the chances of picking up tanks such as the ones you had fabbed for water and fuel? They look great and fit really well with the bike build. Not that I need them any time soon but you never know... :D

    Good luck and fast healing!
  10. Dread Pendragon

    Dread Pendragon Don't look back

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    Forgive me for not reviewing all the previous posts to see if the info is already posted, but is there a website to follow you? Even if it's just a racing page for you on Facebook?
  11. catas

    catas Orange rider

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  12. JMo (& piglet)

    JMo (& piglet) Gone a bit Baja

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    Thanks Spick!

    If you mean one of these tasty tanks (any excuse for a photo eh?):

    [​IMG]

    Then if you contact the guys at GMX Radiators:

    http://www.gmxradiators.co.uk/

    I'm sure they can help you. They are happy to do one-offs (on the understanding it fits in around their regular work), but the cost is correspondingly higher of course... I would say though that their quality and craftsmanship is top notch - whether you want a bespoke tank or rad, or just a simple radiator repair.

    In fact, since I'm singing the praises of my 'sponsors', then it is probably a good time to run through a few other mods I've made to the bike...

    First up, I've finally landed a steering damper for the WR... those of you who followed the build and my efforts in the FIM round in Tunisia earlier this year: http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=568696 will know that due to the last minute preparation of the bike, I went to Tunisia without a damper fitted at all! Actually, it wasn't terrible riding without one (such is the inherent stability of the WR I suspect - either that or my inability to go particularly fast...) but it would have been far less fatiguing both physically and mentally to have one fitted - there were certainly a few OMG moments on the faster rockier sections!

    So, having been a fan of GPR dampers on both my XR650R and Tenere rally bikes, I contacted the UK importer: http://www.trackparts.co.uk/ who were able to help me out with a V4 underbar kit for the WR:

    [​IMG]

    The kit includes a new bar-clamp riser block (that mount the bars approx 15mm higher than the stock risers), which is also braced (and machined from natty billet aluminium)... and bolts directly to the stock top triple clamp (note. for the Marathon Class in Dakar, you have to retain the stock triple clamps).

    Of course typically the GPS Duo bracket that holds the organisation's Iritrack and GPS unit in place, has bolt holes drilled for the KTM bar-clamp dimensions (that is 90mm bolt centres, rather than the Yamaha 100mm bolt centres), so I had to attack the base of the bracket with a succession of drills (boy that stainless steel is hard stuff, I killed 2 and a half drill bits with it!), so that it fitted low profile and without any unnecessary brackets etc.

    [​IMG]

    note. it really isn't that big, its just a wide angle camera lens x

    So with the revised wiring almost complete (still debating on whether to fit an HID to the space above the stock headlight, as that will mean upgrading the stator and battery too), the bike really is starting to take shape again - and not a moment too soon as in two weeks, it'll be on it's way!

    I also picked up my recovered seat last week:

    [​IMG]

    Which, as a matter of good taste, I decided to get recovered in subtile, classic, black (well, charcoal) suede this time, rather than the fancy embroidered beige Alcantara I got my Tenere seat covered in (see the Heroes-Legend thread! http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=512589 for that little beauty!)...

    Marcus at Paint & Trim in North Wales: http://www.paint-and-trim.com/north_wales.htm did a cracking job in double quick time, including adding an inch of softer foam in the middle and rear of the seat (for extra comfort on those long liaisons!) - goodness knows the stock seat is purgatory! Certainly the new seat is far softer, although perhaps a little too soft (in that it compresses very easily with your weight on it) so will be interesting to see how it rides now - especially after a hundred miles or so - it may be that slightly firmer foam is required after all...

    Finally, as part of the general fiddling around I've stuck some (foil) tape over the open ends of the roadbook holder - to stop dust and sand getting in and potentially jamming up the works, even though I didn't have a problem during two sandstorms and countless crashed in Tunisia (and Heroes' last year), it's a wise precaution - thanks for the tip Cummo!

    [​IMG]

    So that's about it for now...

    My foot still hurts, but at least I'm able to walk around quite freely now - I really need to get on my bicycle and get some proper exercise through it... but that is going to have to wait a little longer... there is the small matter of another bike to run-in, strip down, and pack up...

    And it won't stop raining!

    J x
  13. schattat

    schattat Long timer

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    Looking good there, Jenny! :lurk
  14. JMo (& piglet)

    JMo (& piglet) Gone a bit Baja

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    Hi Pendragon!

    I did intend to get a website up and running, but what with the ongoing delays in getting my 'supporters pack' (a kind of Jenny riff raff thing) together, it's not happened yet...

    However, as soon as I get the go on all the gear and T-shirts printed etc., then I hope to have a link through the Desert Rose Racing website so you can buy on line, and hopefully [if they let me have access!] I'll be able to update you all through there in a blog stylee, both before and during the rally itself...

    And yes, I must be the only person left in the world who doesn't have a facebook page!

    These things may come, but right now I really have got to concentrate on getting the bike together, and getting fit enough to ride!

    J x
  15. spick

    spick Adventurer

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    Great looking build. That middle tank really sets it off.

    I'm finally getting around to fitting a Scotts damper to my WR as well. I've suffered quite a few nasty knocks at speed so I'm eager to see what it will do for me once installed. I'm still running a stock seat and know exactly what you mean on long trips. Ouch.

    I did install the X2 HID from Trail-Tech along with their stator upgrade kit. The stator kit was a really easy install and the HID kicks out a LOT of light. Well worth it IMO.

    I'll be keeping my eye out for your support kit as well. Good luck. We'll be cheering you on!
  16. skibum69

    skibum69 slave to gravity

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    hijack-hey Steve did I send you Patrick's itinerary for Morocco in December?

    You'll love your damper too, I noticed it in the first 100 yards on the 640:thumb

    hijack over.

    The bike looks great Jenny, I really like the baby Safari tank on the back, I'll keep that in mind for my next build.:thumb
  17. JMo (& piglet)

    JMo (& piglet) Gone a bit Baja

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    Yes, I was in two minds about it - not at first of course, as I felt it would be essential for Tunisia, especially without a fuel pump fitted for the front tanks (now rectified)...

    However, by day 3 in Tunisia, I realized I didn't need it (and ran it empty after that) - mainly due to there being refuels for the bikes every 160kms, as they were running the Enduro Cup class alongside...

    Since the fuel stops were neutralized, there was no real benefit it brimming the tanks at the start of each day, even if you had the tank capacity - although I guess it would mean you could enjoy your sarnies at a less frantic pace?! Therefore most people opted to run their bikes a little lighter, with just enough fuel for the distance between refuels, particularly on the dune days.

    But the Dakar days are going to be different of course - a lot longer liaisons, and up to 250kms between special stage refuels, so while the new centre tank still gives me 25L in total up front, I thought it would be a good idea to refit it, and have the extra 5L on the rear too - even if I only fill it on the longer days...

    In fact I've just ordered a second fuel tap so I can isolate the rear (or centre) auxiliary tank as required...

    J x
  18. skibum69

    skibum69 slave to gravity

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    Sounds like solid planning, Mongolia had a few 275km sections where Mike & I were seriously concerned about fuel range. Getting lost anywhere would add more too. I made it a habit to find fuel whenever I could on the long ones, Mike crossed his fingers and ran out of gas once:lol3
  19. Bluebull2007

    Bluebull2007 Adventurer

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    Hey Mike, does this mean you thinking of doing up at WR450 as a rally bike then?? :nod
  20. Bluebull2007

    Bluebull2007 Adventurer

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    Jen, I had a major drama class with my HID light. Even with a rewound stator, the "rally" battery was pooped after about 3 hours when that bloody light was on. it also interfered with the power of the bike and even starting it; how I dont know. Anyway, I would suggest you stick to a nice halogen.

    If you go the HID route, just make sure that the stator is actually charging the bike. I would go for a technical ride of 5-7 hours at least to make sure. If it wasnt for this bloody problem on mine I think I could have been a couple of hours faster, and one off less at least!

    Im interested to see what you decide.

    BTW have you any plans to have someone on the support team phone in and update us or maybe update the thread on some of the low down stuff while on the rally? I know you plan to phone in regularly, but you know how it goes.

    Dont forget we will be shouting from the sidelines. :freaky

    Cheers and ride safe.

    Neil