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Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Colebatch, Oct 18, 2012.
I'll keep it in mind for the next trip!
We have a lot of rivers in Holland: Rijn, Maas, IJssel etc
Iff you think those are suitable to practice rivercrossing you'd better put on a life vest bofore you ride in
Let me know when you are going. Than I'll bring a camera
Well ... he should try this one
It was obviously a concern that this might not be a goer at all,-we hadn't at that point found the "sandbank trail" that made it just possible to get across this lake, so I hopped on the bike and rode along the course of the river to see if there was a better crossing place.
Any places that presented a reasonable approach were too narrow and thus the water was way too deep, or the approach was just a mass of saplings, bushes etc that there was no way through to ascertain the depth and bottom. I recced about 5 ks then turned round. The lake offered the ony real option unless we were going to retrace our steps (wash your mouth out!) who knows how far to find a bridge.
I'm having some trouble with the photo hosting site guys.
It's maybe a firewall matter as I'm at work, so please bear with me I'll pop some pics up this evening when I get home.It's 9.25 a.m GMT right now, so it'll be a few hours.
We are at the edge of our seats man, enough with the suspense!
Ok ... I have been out of contact for a few days but just preparing the water crossing pics now.
Sorry delay folks ... Here we go ...
Walter you cannot be out for a few days.............. we are checking few times a day the RR !!
When I returned to start my bike, it sometimes ran and sometimes didnt. It was clear that the back of the bike had been in the water so low that water had been drawn into the fuel tank through the breather. I limped over to the far bank and cranked the engine over ... sometimes the bike ran ok then when we hit a water bubble, it stopped. I kept cranking, thinking I would suck all the water thru the injector and eventually get back to straight fuel. It was a slow way to do it.
When I thought I had the engine running OK again, I shut it off and signalled to Terry to begin his crossing of the river.
Rod and Prutser helped to locate the sandbank route across:
Terry's crossing went OK ... and soon there were 2 bikes on the far bank:
Beamster was still shell shocked that these 4 crazy testosterone fuelled guys were insisting on getting their bikes over the "lake", so Prutser grabber her bike and started trying to drown it.
Terry offers Prutser some invaluable advice - "See over there mate, there are two bikes. You need to get this one over there too."
Beamster, meanwhile, was now having fun in the water. Her bike was across
Well so far 3 BMW X-Bikes had made it over OK ... apart from mine when I rushed in before the cross river route was perfected, and found a spot too deep for my fuel tank. Now it was time to see how the KTM would fare with a bit of powerwalking river crossing.
Terry here acts as Rod's routefinder:
After the first 40-50 yards, Rod is thinking, this is easy for the broad KTM.
And his bike also make it across without too much drama.
We left the hardest bike till last. The boxer would be a real challenge as it is the lowest of all the bikes. Its air intake is the lowest. It was unlikely we could power walk it across the river. It would need to be pushed over manually once the water got too deep. Here he prepares by shifting water vulnerable equipment into higher bags.
What we didn't expect was how soon that would be before the boxer lost power. While the air intake is under the fuel tank on the boxer, the bike died while there was still a lot of air getting in to the airbox. For some reason water was getting into the carb (Prutser can give us a more detailed explanation). The carbs were as low as the cylinders. For the rest of the trip, it seemed Prutser on the boxer would have a maximum fording depth of about 50 cm (20 inches) ... about half the depth of the single cylinder bikes (my air intake is 1.00m (3 feet 3 inches)) . This is as deep as he got before the boxer stopped running:
But that was a problem to worry about later. For now we needed to guide the boxer across. Again Terry acts as pathfinder, directing Prutser to the shallowest sections:
I dont know who got it wrong here ... Terry for giving dodgy directions, or Prutser for not following the navigation plan precisely. But this shows that if you strayed as little as a foot (30cm) away from the planned route, the water suddenly got a lot deeper.
But good to see the boys still smiling as they hooked up with a sandbank again:
Out came the spark plugs and the engine was turned over to first blow the water out of the cylinders ... in this pic a huge load is squirting out the far side of the bike.
With the water mostly out of the cylinders, the bike could be fired up, to get teh rest out of the cylinders and to blast clear the water filled exhaust system ...
At least the bike was nicely cleaned now
I've been building water injection systems into rally cars in the past, but this is a bit over the top
Walter with his normal modesty has missed in these posts, our manliness and extreme bravery (testosterone eh?) in facing this terrifying white water ordeal.
You haven't seen Prutster in these pics because he was acting as crocodile decoy and narrowly escaped with his life when he had to wrestle a particularly aggressive female. (The crocs were just as aggressive).
Terry suffered a serious bite to his manhoood from the Sibirsky Pirahna shoal. At least he said that's what it was -I wasn't privy to the unveiling of the wound but apparently it was a truly gruesome sight.
"Out came the spark plugs and the engine was turned over to first blow the water out of the cylinders ... in this pic a huge load is squirting out the far side of the bike"
You better hope that's what it is!!
Like this one water exhaust.
Just wondering about the float chambers in this pic - Prutser seems to have them open and with handy wires to hold them hanging in place. Something to do with water and fuel?
I knew the crossings would be a challenge with the boxer. I was the first one to ride my bike in.
Most of my trip's I'll end in the water with my bike's so I thought I knew the limit. But this was the first time with this one.
And it did surprise me that the bike started to stutter when the carbs submerged. (normally the bikes have no problem this deep). So I jumped of the bike and started to grab my tools.(that is what I was doing on this picture).
When I found water in the float chambers I tightened all the hose clamps.(Which I allready did before).
There are brass tubes in the float chambers that could let water get in to the carb. I squeezed them tight
and mounted them again.The bike fired up again.
I the meantime Walter started trying to make it across.... to the place were he stopped the bike.
When his bike didn't want to keep running Terry and me helped to push his bike across.
After that the other bikes were brought to the other side. I helped Walter and Terry with there bikes.
Than I walked Beem(ster)'s bike over with Terry's help (Thanks Mate )
Walked back again for my lightweight bike . In the mean time Terry helped Rod with the KTM.
The first few meters were no problem.Until the water reached the air intake ! Before it went under the bike started to stall again. The carbs are 50cm from the ground, the intake 75cm.
Now Terry helped me to push my bike. It was tough with the current and the bike sinking into the soft soil.
When all the bikes were across I took out the spark plugs, drained the bike. By the time everyone was done wringing their socks......my bike was running and ready to go.(took about 10 min)