LoneStar's Adventure to South America

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by LoneStar, Sep 7, 2017.

  1. LoneStar

    LoneStar WhoopDeDoofus

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    Michnus and Elsebie https://www.pikipikioverland.com/ and http://advrider.com/index.php?threads/michnus-elsebie-piki-piki-around-the-world.696647/ have far more travel experience than I and are on DR650's for a reason. They both have 1200's and love them, but experienced enough BMW issues in Africa on their 650's to end the relationship for world travel. He and I were discussing alternatives and the AT's keep coming up. Ten years ago I said that if Honda ever built an adventure bike that's where I'd end up. The DR's a great for exploring countries like this and are a real alternative but they're physically a bit small for me. The 1200 Beemers are awesome bikes, just the logistics of failures on a long trip out of the US comfort zone. Any and all bikes will have issues but making it less painful on the way helps :D
    michnus, hardroadking and Phoenix101 like this.
  2. seismic52

    seismic52 Adventurer

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    I recently bought a Triumph Tiger 800 but I also considered the AT and a friends 2012 GSA with 22k miles on the meter. I have short legs and the GSA looks very imposing so I dropped that. A few years ago I had a lot of problems with a Honda VFR with the coil "burning up" several times including while on a trip from SIngapore to Thailand and I had to get a van from SIngapore (850km) come and pick me up in northern Malaysia and bring me back to Singapore where I had the coil replaced. Very annoying! I've had Triumphs for a few years and have had no problems and since the Tiger came with a good deal I decided to go for that. I have tried to find out if there are any recurring problems by looking at forums and talking to the service department of a local delaer and, so far, I haven't. So fingers crossed it should be reliable...
  3. LoneStar

    LoneStar WhoopDeDoofus

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    The 800 Tiger is the other bike that interested me. One of the guys off the Stahlratte was on a Tiger 800 and he has had no issues of any sort both previous to or on this trip either
  4. tricepilot

    tricepilot El Gran Payaso

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    I know this feeling when you're on the road and the bike is on the fritz and you're looking for the answer:

    [​IMG]

    So I sent you a PM about it
  5. danh600

    danh600 Been here awhile

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    Not to make light of your misfortune, but the thought of you my tall friend, on a scooter is amusing.

    Again, thanks for the RR and pictures.
    Grynch and LoneStar like this.
  6. Ohio_Danimal

    Ohio_Danimal If I die trying, at least I tried

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    Fingers crossed that the drier TPS will do the trick and get you back on the road.
    LoneStar likes this.
  7. bigdog99

    bigdog99 Weaned and neutered

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    Just $.02 worth. I have had experience with the pins in the connectors pushing out when you are plugging everything back together. The connectors snap together and look fine, but if the pins themselves have lost their tiny barb that holds them in place, they will push back in the connector and make either no contact or intermittent contact. Might be worth a double-check.
    LoneStar likes this.
  8. Dalmatino

    Dalmatino Been here awhile

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    LoneStar, if you like twins you may not like the Tiger. Make sure you ride one for a length of time first. I loved everything about the bike except the motor. It just doesn't feel right for adventure/off-road type of use...But that's me!

    I've had or ridden pretty much all of them and currently own this 2015 Vstrom 1000 which I love and prepared for my SA trip. The only negative is the need for premium fuel. Having said that after spending 2 summers with it and doing few short trips here in western Canada as preparation for SA I come to a decision that a smaller and simpler bike would be better. I still love the Vstrom but will be going back to a DR650 for the trip.

    I have owned 2 since 2001 and you just can't beat them. Biggest issue was the wind drag from a lack of wind protection even with small fairings...till recently!
    DRJoe out of Australia makes a Yenkro fairing kit that transforms the bike. I'm 6' 2" and 230lbs and I understand how it can feel small but that sure comes in handy much of the time but I think the fairing will change both the wind fatigue and too small a feel.
    Thing is with the DR, one needs to do a bunch of mods to bring the bike to life and it's full potential but is still 1/3 of cost of expensive bikes.

    Owned 3 BMW over the years and even sold them for a short time. "I love then but will not own another"

    Hope you get it sorted soon!
    LoneStar likes this.
  9. Davidprej

    Davidprej Davidprej

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    "One's life is never diminished by helping others."

    Words to live by!
    battdoc and AT Blizzard like this.
  10. LoneStar

    LoneStar WhoopDeDoofus

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    Thanks for your post. I've ridden a couple of them briefly and overall I like the feel. My concern on Triumph was the lack of dealers, or my perception anyway, south of the border. To some degree confirmed as I've not seen a one that I remember.

    Vstroms. Excellent moto and the one my head told me to go with when I got back into riding 10 years ago. Being a visual person however, I just couldn't get past looks and wanted to smile each time I looked at the bike.

    The 98 Anniversary R1100GS I found ticked every box and brought me into a new world, but it had almost 100k on it at the end and I felt a newer bike with less miles would be a better choice for my 1-2 year trip.

    The GSA has brought me pleasure in spades and has been great generally. It's unfortunate that the fatal flaw of the engine design happened to coordinate with a foreign country and the worst holiday season of the year. Time is more valuable than money and it's the fact a $30 seal has destroyed an entire month or possibly more and can ruin a trip I've waited many years for. Racing through countries I wanted to explore is not something I look forward to just to beat bad weather and change of seasons ahead. Due to that I can blame the bike design and a thousand other things but it was my choice.

    I'm intrigued by the AT but have only sat on them. Fits well and I dream of Honda reliability and simplicity. Reality is it has a few issues and despite being simpler, I doubt it's fixable on a roadside and Honda dealers probably have no parts or experience in this hemisphere either. Same situation could occur here.

    Thus to the DR. It's a realistic option and set up well looks like a great solution. When I first met Michnus and Elsebie in San Antonio, they had purchased two slightly used bikes and properly outfitted them for, if I remember correctly, less than or equal to the price of one new F650GS. He can correct me if I misremembered, but after their Africa issues with the F650s they were done.

    All that blather just to say a DR is definitely of interest, especially as you ride past hundreds if not thousands of little moto repair shops along the roadsides and think they might have a chance of cobbling something together to help keep a DR moving forward. Absolutely nothing they could do for a GS except lend a wrench




    Sent from my ONEPLUS A3000 using Tapatalk
  11. LoneStar

    LoneStar WhoopDeDoofus

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    I wish I'd dumped in seal sealer and headed for Lima for damn sure!

    Sent from my ONEPLUS A3000 using Tapatalk
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  12. MrKiwi

    MrKiwi Love my Tranny

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    I've stayed away from the discussion on bikes as this is such a personal thing.

    I really like my Africa Twin but that is because I have modified it for long distance touring. No bike is perfect, but some are better platforms than others to work with.

    I really hope you get the beemer sorted soon. cheers.
    Phoenix101, ONandOFF and LoneStar like this.
  13. Vin

    Vin Hopeless Addict

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    I don't have much in my good karma bucket, but what I've got I send your way. This is much too good a thread to end on a pallet.
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  14. LoneStar

    LoneStar WhoopDeDoofus

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    Looking forward to testing one out! BTW I've got a standing invitation to visit New Zealand and may rent a bike there for a month after this trip ends. If so I'll buy you a beverage if you're around then - assuming you live in NZ of course :lol3
    ONandOFF likes this.
  15. AT Blizzard

    AT Blizzard Been here awhile

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    So I went back to Page 23 which opened this latest Chapter in the adventure --

    and in reviewing 17 pages of polar opposite experience -- what stands out to me most are your vivid cultural/landscape images -versus- the cold drama of solving a modern BMW meltdown. Very compelling on several levels, but you have enriched those of us who have not been to that region.
    ONandOFF likes this.
  16. jimjim

    jimjim Just another FF!

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    Your photography talk inspired me to play around with my Sony RX100 IV which I've had for nearly a year now but haven't spent the time to learn how to really use it. I took the following photo NYE night while sitting around our camp fire with light only provided by the fire and moon, no flash. Camera was handheld in auto mode and I couldn't believe how clear the photos were. Thank you again for the inspiration and I hope you get the GSA sorted out soon.

    [​IMG]
  17. LoneStar

    LoneStar WhoopDeDoofus

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    I agree. Trying to pre-think options is difficult. All this may be a moot point tomorrow if the bike is fixed.

    If it still isn't right but good enough I'll head for Lima asap and take main highways to get there.

    If it isn't right I can ship to Quito but hear really mixed opinions of the BMW dealer.
    Guayaquil dealer has terrible reputation and has blown me off entirely.

    The time factor is the biggest because I can't sit another month somewhere waiting for BMW parts.

    Due to that is why shipping it back and ridding myself of the time killer is a solution, then buy a used bike in Peru to finish the trip and return to Peru to sell it.

    Variations of all the above exist.

    All may be moot and will seem foolish if the bike runs tomorrow. At least I can vent online and you guys can't do a damn thing about it :deal
  18. MrKiwi

    MrKiwi Love my Tranny

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    I do live in NZ. What is your timeline approximately. Send me a PM, I might be able to help you.
    ONandOFF likes this.
  19. ONandOFF

    ONandOFF more off than on

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    It's different not having to live it, so please excuse my taking the liberty, but I don't believe I could look at it as wasted time or a wasted trip. The evidence certainly points to the contrary despite the hassle factor. It may not have been part of your plan but it was part of the bigger plan. And in the appropriate holiday season. "It was the best of times; it was the worst of times..." Whatever the future holds, may it be viewed as glorious.
  20. Zapgarou

    Zapgarou Ripper

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    Sorry that you are having all the problems with your BMW, but all the new motorcycles and cars are getting more and more complicated with all the electronics etc.
    and typically have to be dealer repaired.
    I have always done all my mechanical work and hate chasing electronic gremlins that cause an engine to run badly. Even with diagnostic equipment it can still be
    difficult to solve sometimes. In my experience over many years, simpler is better and is one of the reasons I like old motorcycles and cars, less to go wrong and easier to fix.
    Sadly, gone are the days when you could do a roadside repair with a crescent wrench, screw driver and a pair of pliers.

    Hope you get it sorted and can continue on your journey................
    roadcapDen and LoneStar like this.