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Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Colebatch, Oct 18, 2012.
I remember the first time I read Colebatch's old report of that bridge with Tony stopped mid-way over in the storm, etc. Seriously spine chilling, and the photo is still my desktop background 2+ years later.
What's next, someone wheelieing the thing and tossing a nac nac over that hump in the middle?
So, EtronX...if Walter was leading the way across that bridge, who took the picture???
Just Kidding..... This is a fantastic report. Carry On, Gents.
Can we please have an update on how the Sprockets are holding up? Do you only go with one rear? Is it a 47T or 48T?
How many fronts do you go thought on a trip like this? I like to carry 2 of each but if I can go with one rear.....much better.
EtronX, what can you tell me about that low fender? Where'd you get it? Was it just a straight bolt-on? How'd it hold up?
One Ironman rear sprocket is all thats needed for a year of expeditioning. No spares carried. 47T
I did carry a total of 3 spare front sprockets ... a14T, 2 x 15T ... at the start of the trip, plus the 16T I began with. Most of the time, I used the 2 15T front sprockets
No physical training in particular. but I ski alot and I think skiing helps. On the bike you also keep your knees bent and use your legs to absorb movement of the platform under you ... just like skiing. So developing your thighs and quads is probably a worthwhile bit of physical prep.
No unusual or significant aches or pains.
The key is to make sure the ergonomics of the bike are as comfortable as possible if you are doing long off road rides. The seat should be as comfortable as possible - Erik, Geir and I were all using what I consider to be the best aftermarket seats you can get by dutch seatmaker Rayz. Terry was using an airhawk, on top of his own modifications to his seat. The footpegs should be large. The handlebars need to be in as comfortable position as possible. You need to be able to stand and balance on the pegs all day long with the wind acting on your body ... so if you have to move the bars higher and forward to make it comfortable for 3 months of standing, then you need to do that.that.
None of us (except steve) have metal boxes ... which is the main source of vibration on motorcycle luggage contents. Soft luggage dampens out vibration significantly, while metal luggage amplifies it.
If you store your laptop in soft luggage in the safest place on the bike, the back bag, and its in there with clothes, then you will not have a problem.
I always use normal laptops, with normal hard drives and have done over 100,000 km of off road touring that way (well over double that if you consider all the asphalt as well) in non western countries, and I have not had a hard drive problem.
You only need to use flash drive computers if you put your laptop in a metal box and then ride it fast over rocky corrugated roads.
Steve was the only one of us to use metal box luggage, and he was the only one who had to use flash drives. EtronX and I had normal laptops with normal hard drives and normal backup drives - and we used soft luggage.
Hi Chaps, great ride report, been glued to it for the last 10 days. Congrats to all of you for the amazing adventure.
A quick questions to all the guys please, did any of you ever consider using a tire mousse, similar to what the guys on the Dakar use. If not why please, is it a cost consideration or are they just not worth it for these types of trips, I have know idea what a tire mouse costs. Cheers.
I used mousses in the past, when I did the BAM in 2009 for example.
They are expensive, and they are EXTREMELY difficult to mount without both experience and a machine. They are totally unavailable in Siberia. Even in Moscow I have not heard of anyone stocking them.
Also they are not bulletproof ... rear mousses are hollow and filled with air. I punctured my rear mousse in 2009. Making it of very limited use. I had to swap it out for a tube when it ripped.
Its not a rule. I would guess its cause they (KTM) havent got it at a level they are happy with - KTM have always been slow movers to EFI ... later than than all the other major manufacturers. The Honda bikes this year were injected, and two of them were in the top 10. The Husqvarnas were injected, and one of them was in the top 10. Joan Barreda Bort won 4 stages, more than anyone else this year - on his injected Husqvarna. The Yamahas were injected - and two of them were in the top 10.
I think its just a matter of time. Three of the top four marques this year were running injected bikes. Only KTM hasnt made the switch yet. And as mentioned above, KTM is always behind the curve when it comes to injection. They are behind BMW/Husky and the Japanese brands on all their bikes switching to EFI, road bikes, enduro bikes racing bikes. I guess they dont put the same amount of R&D into FI as the other brands.
Also, BMW and Honda have a lot of FI knowledge from their automotive divisions.
I got this fender from Pål Anders Ullevålseters mechanic. It is a carbon thing and it is very light. It was not a straight bolt on. It was made for Pål Anders KTM Dakar bike. His bike is quite a bit more narrow in the front suspension compared to the XC. I had a friend build up some kevlar on the outside and then we sanded through. Then we got the width that was needed. It is still very light, but maybe a bit short in the rear. Both Walter and I found some old plastic oil cans in Uoyan that we cut apart and made into front fender extension. This prevented the mud from being thrown up onto the engine and radiator.
I am not quite sure, but I think that the X Country's low front fender will fit straight on.
When we woke up in Severobaikalsk, it was pissing down with rain.
We summoned a conference on the balconies of our huts, and decided adventure riding still had to be fun where possible, and if it was raining and miserable today then we would take a day off. This time there was no maintenance to do, nothing to work on, so we took a lazy day. Everyone did a lot of blogging. EtronX downloaded a new operating system onto Terry's iphone enabling him to use Russian sim cards. We went and had a look around town. Did some supplies shipping so we were all stacked up with noodles for the BAM Road, and I spent some time going over with the team, what we had ahead of us.
I told the boys that the rough stuff doesnt actually start here, in Severobaikalsk, but we had a good smooth fast road to Novy Uoyan, about 200 km away. From there there was another 200 km to Taksimo that wasnt great, but still not real rugged BAM Road stuff. I told the boys we go to Taksimo in one day. The real BAM adventure begins after Taksimo ...
So basically they had a day's grace before the challenging stuff.
Then in the evening we went for dinner in our local meat restaurant .... then walked home by the northern shores of Lake Baikal.
Naturally the boys looked at this and decided they wanted a swim.
Well I had swum in Baikal before ... I was happy to let the other lads check it out.
Strangely enough, we also stumbled across a rather appropriate viking-esque boat and carvings by the lake ...
Before heading up to our hotel (sorry pics arent sharp ... from a mobile phone)
no it wont mate ... wrong radius ... its for a 19 inch front wheel, not a 21 inch
We also looked into mousse, but decided agains it. As Walter said, it is a pain in the neck to change tires.
We left Norway with brand new tires. We used Mefo Super Explorer and heavy duty 4 mm cross tubes inside. The tires and tubes were changed in Krasnoyarsk, but in retrospect that was not needed. We could hardly see that they were worn at all. That was after 9.000 km's on mostly asphalt. The tires would have lasted the whole trip. Thats almost 18.000 km
After Olkhon the proper off roading started. I took some pretty heavy hits to my rims. Hitting rocks in the road at high speed. Some that I was sure would puncture the tubes. Nothing happened. Between us Erik and I had one puncture on the whole trip. That was when Erik hit a spike laying in the road close to the end of the trip.
It was just cold and you chickened out. Admit it
Before the swim
During the swim. I have one more picture. I just have to get permission from tee bee first
After the swim
Some local guy had made this for his daughter. They had a small hut right there on the beach
It was cold, so I exercised my wisdom, and decided that the pleasure I might get from the swim was less than the cost.