Ganso de América del Sur (South American Goose)

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by OtterChaos, Sep 16, 2016.

  1. OtterChaos

    OtterChaos Guzzi Sud!

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    ganso de América del Sur

    What to ride what to ride? Having dreamed of a long trip down to South America after reading so many epic ride reports here I am going to take a look for myself. I recently retired so I have time to do this trip (thanks to the wife for understanding what I'm up to) and while not breaking any new ground for the adventurous types here I will be trying to get off the main tourist path for the most part. So I want to go, can afford to go and I just needed to decide what I wanted to ride down there. I figured my requirements were for a mid-sized bike, air cooled, shaft drive, easy maintenance and hey maybe something I like to ride. Well if you can speak Spanish you might recognize the title of my report for meaning " South American Goose" (well I hope so anyways, I'm in the No Fumar Espanol group of Spanish speakers). And what is a Goose? Moto Guzzi of course.

    So what Guzzi would be suitable for such a trip? Griso? Probably a bit too street toughish for the task. Norge? Not sure how well the sport tourer would do on the rougher parts of the trip. California 1400? Hmmm bit big really. Well of course the Stelvio makes perfect sense and I have one sitting in my garage right now!!
    [​IMG]


    but...... it's a bit heavy (really heavy) and all along I've wanted to take another Guzzi for this trip, the Stelvio will have to wait a bit to get some Latin America flavor. No I happen to have another Guzzi in my stable (well I only have the two Guzzi's nothing else) that has been the focus of my planning (hint, not much planning done) So here is the perfect bike for my South America trip

    [​IMG]

    Yep there she is, a 744cc air cooled shaft drive twin that isn't too heavy (relatively speaking of course, compared to the Stelvio it is a featherweight). This is a 2013 V7 Stone with 13,400 miles on her bought from new.
    What makes her the best bike?

    • Fast? Nope, probably 40ish horsepower
    • Dealer support? Hahahaha Nope, probably few to none Guzzi dealers south of San Diego
    • Farkelable? Nope, not a wealth of parts designed to make the bike ADV worthy, eagle eyed readers will note the lack of a skid plate as I've only ever found one available and it was a nightmare to fit, was very thin, attached to the engine in a sub-optimal way and would add hours to doing oil changes as I'd have to remove it and then try to refit it afterwards so I'm going without. I do wish I had a better solution here.
    • Spoked wheels? Nope, I'm going tubeless for the trip (I figure many bikes make the trip on similar rims so why not try it) and hope to miss the many potholes in my path if I can.
    • Pliant Suspension? Ahhh I don't know of anyone who thinks the V7's stock forks and shocks are even a passable solution on smooth roads.

    but.....

    • Air cooled so no radiator to worry about.
    • 5 gallon fuel tank gives good range (200 miles plus)
    • The drive train hasn't changed much in many years (parts from a Breva would fit the V7) so it's pretty reliable.
    • 2013 saw the addition of the Single Throttle body fuel injection system which by all accounts is an improvement on previous models.
    • Look how easy it is to get to the valve covers, routine maintenance is a snap on these bikes.
    • It will probably be a bit different than other bikes on the same trek, I kinda like that.

    and lastly and of the most importance, it is the bike I WANT to ride there!!

    Will it end in disaster? Have I set myself up for failure? Who knows but I hope to have a bit of fun whatever happens.

    Now that I have laid out the insane reasons I chose a bike unsuitable to the task I'll list some of the things I have done to it for the trip

    • Garmin 660 GPS
    • Rocky Meyer seat
    • Lowered foot pegs for more room (I'm 6'0 and cramped on a standard V7 but with the pegs and reworked seat I am fine)
    • Center stand and Euro spec side stand (U.S. version of side stand interferes with the center stand)

    [​IMG]



    • Kenda K761's front and rear
    • Gazi rear shocks and RaceTech fork stuff up front (still not a great suspension IMO but there really isn't that much available for the bike unless I want to spring (spring get it?) for custom Ohlins shocks which I don't)

    [​IMG]

    • Guzzi Tech 2:2 Stainless exhaust system which saves me some weight but also gives me more clearance for my luggage
    • HepcoBecker rear and side luggage racks
    • AdvSpec Magaden soft bags on the sides, HepcoBecker topcase and a Moto Guzzi tank bag

    [​IMG]

    • Breva touring windscreen (again Moto Guzzi retains many of the same fittings, this windscreen fits with no modifications I just had to remove a couple of thread plugs and bolt this on) with a MRA X-tour wing mounted up (this may not make the trip, testing is underway)
    • Headlight guard
    • Heated grips
    • Barkbuster handguards that are there for wind protection mostly as the ones that fit my bike don't have the metal cross bar that provides impact protection.
    • CRG Arrow bar end mirrors (really these were not added with this trip in mind, the stock mirrors are poor and these are so much better but very vulnerable to a tip over so I may try to fit my Stelvio mirrors and see it they will work) EDIT: you may notice I have both mirrors on the bike for the pictures, I had decided to use the Stelvio mirrors but wanted a last test run and planned to take the bar end ones off for the pics but found I didn't have the 3mm allen I needed to remove them. The bar end mirrors are off now.
    • FZ1 fuse box
    • Original battery replaced with a MotoBatt AGM gel battery
    • Original R/R replace with a MosFet R/R (there seems to be an issue with the stock R/R in that it can start overcharging the battery fairly quickly into the bikes life)
    • In tank fuel filter that is half metal/half plastic replaced with all metal filter
    • Spark plug caps replace with more reliable design
    • EBC HH brake pads installed
    • Pretty sure I stole this idea from rtwPaul but I have some maintenance info listed inside my topcase
    [​IMG]

    I'm sure I've forgotten some big important items but what can you do, I'm forgetful at times. Next up I'll post a bit about the things I'm taking on the trip.

    Ready to go? I'm leaving sometime around Oct. 7th and heading south for as far as I can or want to go.
    [​IMG]




    #1
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  2. Dracula

    Dracula breathe

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    All I can say is that I am totally subscribed!

    Your whole idea about not too much planning, the bike choice, are awesome. If you decide to put the effort and update the RR in near real time, you will be certainly getting nice ideas and local suggestions, perhaps encountering fellow enthusiasts and make new friends.
    #2
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  3. advFord

    advFord Been here awhile

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    Great bike! I love the V7. I'll be following the adventure south.
    #3
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  4. OtterChaos

    OtterChaos Guzzi Sud!

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2007
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    Thanks guys, this will be my first ride report so while I hope to keep it close to real time I need to see how I get along with internet down south. On a recent trip around the west on my Stelvio (I was a week or so behind you Drac! I liked your report) I found crappy connection speed almost everywhere. Hope for better luck or at least try to post up words and add pics later if there is slow speed interwebs on my trip.

    Should anyone else want to follow along be forewarned that I have no skill at writing so bear with me as I stumble along finding things good, bad, ugly (well I'm not anything to look at so don't expect many self portraits, you can thank me later) and whatever catches my eye.

    Super quick bio for those still awake enough to peruse. 56 years old, 6'0 tall, 260ish lbs (why in the heck am I taking a bike like the V7 which is better suited for a 150 lb rider? Probably insane? ahh who cares anyways just ride the bike) and in decent health. I worked in the nuclear power industry for 31 years after learning my craft in the Navy for 6 years. I speak no Spanish and have no riding partners which I think is for the best as everyone has different travel styles. I'm sure I'll meet others and perhaps ride with them awhile but in the end I will be happier being able to go my own way as needed.

    I know I said very little planning but thanks to the many ride reports I'm aware of the Darian Gap and have a reservation on the Stahlratte for the Nov. 21st sailing thus making that day the only appointment for the duration of the trip. I have told friends and family I plan on a 4 month trip but really it could go longer if I need it to.

    Enough for now, I hope to have pics of my tool kit and bits and bobs soon.
    #4
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  5. HarveyMushman

    HarveyMushman Long timer

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    Subscribed.
    #5
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  6. yokesman

    yokesman Long timer

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    I am working on a bike that is not supported for rtw , but there are products that can be fitted to your bike, I am sure to do what you need, a skid plate is such an item,enduro guardian makes a steel plate for the dl650, something like that maybe fitted , your sump is not unlike a bmw hanging down there.
    #6
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  7. Utrider1

    Utrider1 Been here awhile

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    I'm watching you, Otter! Have fun, it all looks great!
    #7
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  8. OtterChaos

    OtterChaos Guzzi Sud!

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    Thanks for looking in guys! A few more pics of stuff I'm taking along.

    [​IMG]

    Tools and maintenance items.

    • A bit of paracord
    • 2 oil filters
    • 2 sets of O-rings and crush washers for oil changes
    • 2 air filters
    • 2 valve cover gaskets
    • 2 spark plugs (I think I'll add two more though)
    • Front and rear brake pads
    • 1 liter 10W-60 oil
    • Thread locker
    • J-B Weld epoxy
    • Zip ties
    • Multimeter
    • Various fuses (in plastic bag next to MM)
    • Misc wire
    • Tire repair kit including compressor, reamer, insertion tool, valve core tool and strings
    • Lonelec computer cables to connect to the ECU via my laptop.
    • Duct tape and electrical tape
    • Tool roll from vendors here http://advrider.com/index.php?threa...ideo-repair-roll-ride-tool-solutions.1161522/
    I've added a few items to the roll
    • Feeler gauges for valve lash adjustment
    • 19 mm socket for oil changes
    • 24 mm socket for rear tire removal
    • 14 mm hex socket for front tire removal
    • Set of allen sockets as the bike uses lots of allen fasteners and I like to use these more so then the bits.
    • Small ratchet that has both 1/4" and 3/8" connections
    • U-joint socket
    • Small flashlight

    With this tool roll I've changed all the oils, done the valve lash adjustment, removed and replaced the front and rear tires.

    [​IMG]

    Here it is all packed up. I decided to put my air filters and other fragile items in these plastic boxes that can be disposed of in need be as they are inexpensive.

    [​IMG]
    For everyday camera usage and spur of the moment shots I'll be carrying an Olympus TG4. Only thing I don't like about this camera is the special cable needed to charge it up so I'll be out of luck if I lose that cable. I'll have this camera either lanyarded to me or in the tank bag.


    [​IMG]

    I hope to take a decent picture or two along the way and in order to give myself the best chance I'm risking taking my Samsung NX-1 along. This camera is weather resistant so it can take a bit of water without exploding. I have 4 lenses for the body. A 16-50mm for normal shots, 50-150mm zoom, 12mm for wide angle and a 85mm prime.

    [​IMG]

    The camera will go in the topcase along with my first aid kit and a day pack that has a quick change of clothes (shirt, shorts, underwear and hat).

    More later....

    #8
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  9. vicmitch

    vicmitch Been here awhile

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    Apr 4, 2007
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    876
    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    Not one but two road warriors headed for South America, how great is that. I will be following as I have always thought that that bike is a perfect one for this trip.

    Don't worry about not having dealer support, there are mechanics all over Latin America who can fix things on a simple steel frame bike. Guzzi has dealers in some of the capitol cities, I saw some in Colombia and Ecuador, so you're better off than me and my Victory were and we made it. Don't sweat it planning is overrated.
    #9
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  10. Dracula

    Dracula breathe

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    What I suggest if not already done and still have time, wire up either your tank bag, trunk, or both, so you can charge things using the ubiquitous USB chargers while riding, and not rely just on overnight charging. I used SAE 12 VDC connectors, Amazon sells a bunch of combinations. Also perhaps a SPOT or better a Delorme Inreach (two way texting) and MedJet Assist. Sorry I'll shut up now, it's not my trip this time! Can't wait to see you rolling!
    #10
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  11. OtterChaos

    OtterChaos Guzzi Sud!

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,564
    Location:
    Grover Beach, Ca
    More stuff, clothing and misc

    [​IMG]

    I have one pair of pants, a pair of hiking shorts, swimsuit, sun shirt (I don't tan at all so have to be careful of exposure to the sun), hat, three pair smart wool underwear, two regular shirts, a collared shirt for fancy times, one pair of riding socks, two pairs of walking/hiking short socks, one pair of mid length hiking socks. I also have a silk sleeping bag liner to use if I am worried about the bedding in a hotel. On the upper right of the photo is my quick change stuff that will be in the top case and it consists of one pair of comfy shorts, shirt, hat, socks and one pair of smart wool underwear.

    [​IMG]

    Here is my foul weather gear (off the bike stuff mostly) And something important I forgot to put in another picture

    • Rain hat
    • Thermal leggings
    • Wool long sleeve base layer
    • Balaclava
    • Rain top (insulated)
    • Rain over pants

    Sjoerd Bakker's guides to hotels in Mexico and Central America.

    [​IMG]

    Tech stuff and others things I needed to get recorded

    • A Surface Pro 4 with mouse and USB mem stick, charger and case
    • Alfa wireless booster (actually need to make sure this works before I go)
    • Two USB charging bricks
    • Two wall chargers
    • Flashlight
    • Ear plugs
    • Waterproof maps, didn't find maps of the other countries I'm visiting but I'll find something
    • Day use wallet
    • Various USB cables
    • Ear buds
    Not pictured cause I forgot to get it is my Kobo e-book reader. I got a Kobo vice a Kindle as it is water resistant so better for travel I hope.
    And just for Drac... An Inreach Explorer (my map page is in my sig now but I need to figure out how to make it clickable. I think you could cut and paste it now but that is just a pain so I'll get it working).

    Not much else to list I think, riding gear later on. I did re-position my GPS and adjusted the headlight as it was aimed high (most likely from when I installed the guard on the headlight).

    https://share.delorme.com/OtterChaos
    #11
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  12. Dracula

    Dracula breathe

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    Type text here, OtterChaos GPS tracking highlight it then hit the 'link' (chain) button above, in that dialog paste actual web link then click 'Insert' like so:
    upload_2016-9-19_0-21-24.png
    click 'post reply' and voila! That works also in signature pages or any other post.
    #12
  13. OtterChaos

    OtterChaos Guzzi Sud!

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
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    Test post to see if I got the link right

    edit Nope, thought I had it. When I previewed it in my signature editor it showed as a link.

    I think I could get it right but I don't have the link icon available when I edit my sig so I'm not sure what I'm doing wrong. And when I edit an actual post I cannot see my sig to try and updated from there.

    [​IMG]
    #13
  14. GB

    GB . Administrator

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    Over time, signatures have morphed into full color, large font, multi line spam. When we moved to the new forum software, some changes were made to make signatures less obnoxious and more discreet; font size and length of sigs have been reduced, no color or external links, as some inmates were linking photos in their signatures. You could post a URL in your signature, it doesn't take much for an interested person to copy and paste your link into a browser window.
    #14
  15. OtterChaos

    OtterChaos Guzzi Sud!

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    Thanks GB!
    #15
  16. Lupin 3rd

    Lupin 3rd Raygun Gothic

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    You're carrying too much stuff!

    I'm not saying this to be an @$$, just from other ride reports and my camping experiences it looks like you're carrying along more than you'll need: EG 2 extra air filters, oil filters and pads? Take one and leave the other in a box ready to be shipped to you when/where you need.

    OTOH, a spare tube and tire irons may save your @$$ if you should dent a rim or slash a tire.

    Good luck with your trip and congrats on the bike, I'm absolutely jealous!
    #16
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  17. Dracula

    Dracula breathe

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    Preparing is a bear, I always over-pack. I found that sneakers/shoes take up most packing space. I did wonder the reason for your choice of soft luggage, as something useful off road, but is less secure when parked unless you use the pacsafe nets I have seen some people do. I also use a very lightweight Dowco bike cover, it packs small and can be bungeed on top; this helps when I walk away for a quick visit like in a museum or whatnot, leaving everything on the bike parked in a public, high traffic place.
    #17
  18. Lupin 3rd

    Lupin 3rd Raygun Gothic

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    @Dracula here's the universal hard luggage opener (aka crowbar):

    [​IMG]
    #18
  19. Dracula

    Dracula breathe

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    I know, locks are for honest people. But the levels of deterrence may make it harder for all but most determined. Conjuncture is key, where the bike is parked and for how long unattended. I know most / all motels will have indoor parking, and are quite accommodating such as this:
    [​IMG]
    I don't think I'll ever see again a Goldwing riding (barely) up the stairs, through the door, past reception desk and parking near the pool, anywhere else! He is going to have a blast with this trip!
    #19
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  20. SFKLR01

    SFKLR01 Adventurer

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    14
    [​IMG]
    #20
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