South America and back on a 250 Super Sherpa Minimalist Adventure

Discussion in 'Epic Rides' started by JDowns, Oct 2, 2012.

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  1. ratbikemike

    ratbikemike Adventurer

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    Found all the parts right away and locally, WOW. Good for you. Glad the repairs are going so well. It will even look original. ratbikemike
  2. JDowns

    JDowns Sounds good, let's go!

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    Si SeƱor,

    I seem to remember you had a hard time leaving this place. I can see why after two days.

    Me gusta Medellin!!!

    Saludos,
    Juanito
  3. JDowns

    JDowns Sounds good, let's go!

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    Hi RBM,

    This place is ratbike heaven. You'll love it. Look forward to seeing you down the road.

    Su amigo,
    Juan Kawazuki
  4. JDowns

    JDowns Sounds good, let's go!

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    Hola amigos,

    Spent the day trying to keep up with Orlando. Starting with cafe con leche at 5:30AM down at the corner panderia. Headed over to get my clean clothes and took a ride up the teleferica cable car up to the top of the mountain with beautiful views out over the city. I am at an internet cafe that doesn't have wifi so pics will come later.

    Headed over to visit Orlando's lovely daughter Karina and took the bus out south to visit Eduardo and see how the front forks are coming along. He was almost done. When he called this afternoon, he said I can pick them up tomorrow morning. So should have the Sherpa back together by tomorrow night.

    I can hardly believe I got here yesterday and the Sherpa will be totally fixed in two days. They move fast around here. And this guy Eduardo is an old school mechanical genius. The only thing I'll be lacking is a speedo since the electronic sending unit on the original wheel was smashed. But Eduardo is putting on a mechanical Suzuki unit with the new hub, so I might strap on a different speedo. All I really would like is an odometer so I can keep track of kilometers traveled. I can tell how fast I'm going by the sound of the motor in 6th gear.

    Other than that not much to report. Just having fun meeting people and hanging out people watching. My boots had some seams coming apart so I superglued them. And bought some black polish and spiffed them up since the ladies keep staring at my feet. They are really into shoes around here. And tight pants. They look painted on. Not sure how the women get them on. And yes Colombiana women are beautiful.

    I'll try to post up some pictures of Sherpa rehab tomorrow.

    Buenos noches,
    Juan de Sur
  5. TUCKERS

    TUCKERS the famous james

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    John, don't you still have a GPS? That makes a good speedometer and odometer.
  6. Dracula

    Dracula Deus ex machina

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    After talking with a colleague who is from Colombia he taught me to look for "paisas colombianas" and I came up with this Google search:

    http://tinyurl.com/bdjcaxa

    The long version:

    https://www.google.com/search?hl=en&rlz=1C1_____enUS415US415&q=paisas+colombianas&revid=508408236&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_cp.r_qf.&bvm=bv.41867550,d.dmQ&biw=1022&bih=539&um=1&ie=UTF-8&tbm=isch&source=og&sa=N&tab=wi&ei=5WkMUeLnJo7V0gHu_4DIDQ

    If I were John I would think I arrived in Heaven and wouldn't be leaving anytime soon :rofl
  7. Hawk62cj5

    Hawk62cj5 2 Cheap 4 a KLR

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  8. rgiroux

    rgiroux Invisible Man

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    adventures are made of what goes wrong, as much as what goes right.
  9. JDowns

    JDowns Sounds good, let's go!

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    Quick update. Got the Sherpa back together. Need to get SOAT insurance on Monday before I can take it out on the highway so will spend tomorrow changing the oil, bleeding the brakes, cleaning the bike and goofing off.

    The people here have been great. It is hard to believe that a week ago I was standing on the dock out in the Darien with a smashed up bike in one of the most remote rainforests on the planet with no roads or chance of rescue watching the surging ocean and wondering to myself, "Self, I wonder how you're going to get out of this one?"

    The next time I drop the bike on a back road in the woods and break off a turn signal, or find myself in a seemingly tough situation, I will always have this experience to look back on and say to myself, "Well, it could be worse."

    Gotta go. Adios amigos,
    Juan Vagabond
  10. JDowns

    JDowns Sounds good, let's go!

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    Hi Tuckers,

    Good idea. I might try that for distance anyway. Thanks amigo!

    Saludos,
    Juanito
  11. baldrick

    baldrick Moto-Geezer

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    Well Said, Sir.
  12. Clem Kevin

    Clem Kevin Nude With Boots

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    well said. I also like to say that its not an adventure if you don't get lost or if it completely goes your way.

    Hey John, I made a post a while back making this request but I'm going to make it again thinking you might have missed it. I made a 'contribution' a few weeks ago but instead of putting my name on your tank, I want my name on a plate of food.
  13. crashmaster

    crashmaster ow, my balls!

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    Great stuff Juanito!:clap. You are in your groove for sure. Really enjoying reading about your adventures from Berlin. :D. Be careful in the city that Pablo built. You might not ever want to leave. :lol3:lol3

    Buen viaje, Vicente
  14. trespalacios

    trespalacios Oh libertad

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    ...arrive in medellin and celebrate the city that hard working people built, trying to make the world forget about Pablo. It is that hospitality and will to help that define a paisa. World class riders, like yourself, throttlemeister, misery goat, turtle's head and so many others celebrate the daily connections they make, the appreciation of the city and its uniqueness.

    Juanito is certainly in his groove, and according to my dad, who knows a thing or two about life, juanito is a true guerrero
  15. GoMotor

    GoMotor Adventurer

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    I used a cheap bicycle speedometer/odometer with a magnet that attaches to the spokes when mine failed on the road. If you have to splice in a few inches of wire for the longer forks, waterproof the splice so it won't kick out in the rain.
  16. GRinCR

    GRinCR Oppressed Nomad

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    Alajuela, Costa Rica via MN.
    The bike is out of service for the time being so no pics of calle curvas... how about the other side of this coin? :deal

    You the man!
  17. emilymariaa

    emilymariaa tinygiant

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    Yes! go go go! Adventure away;)
  18. JDowns

    JDowns Sounds good, let's go!

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    I have hardly had time to catch my breath since arriving in Medellin. It is the weekend and I need to get SOAT insurance for the bike before heading out into the countryside Orlando tells me. I will follow his sage advice and get some insurance on Monday. Colombia will confiscate uninsured bikes. That wouldn't do.

    With no transportation I am limited to walking around the neighborhood and taking pictures of 50's Chevy moving trucks:

    [​IMG]

    I haven't had easy access to internet and have been spending my time trying to keep up with Orlando. He's a mover and a shaker and knows how to get things done. Yesterday morning we hit the Metro station early and hopped a bus at the end of the line up to Eduardos shop. Here Eduardo is finishing up the new Sherpa wheel. Just had to grind down the spoke tips:

    [​IMG]

    before putting the rim tape, tube and tire back on:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    here is the new set of front forks for the Sherpa with the original triples bolted to the new fork legs. He welded a new bracket on the left fork lower to accommodate the Sherpa caliper:

    [​IMG]

    and here Orlando is overseeing Eduardo as he makes spacers to keep the new forks parallel to the rebuilt wheel:

    [​IMG]

    He had to run down on his Honda 90 to do some final machining to get the parts to work with the axle. Here is his shop bike:

    [​IMG]

    And a '74 XL185 he is fixing up for a customer:

    [​IMG]

    Hailed a taxi and hauled the wheel and forks back to the parking garage where the mechanic and Orlando helped put the front end on. It was pretty easy since the original Sherpa triple clamps had all the same mounting points for the fender, headlight and instrument panel.

    It was raining hard all afternoon, so perfect weather for bike maintenance and assembly.

    Saludos,
    Juanito
  19. JDowns

    JDowns Sounds good, let's go!

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    This morning started out with clear weather and sunshine. Spent quite a while cleaning grime off the Sherpa with toothbrushes, Fab and water. Got the bike much cleaner and removed most of the dirt and salt from the last three months of riding and sailing across the Carribean.

    Then it was time for some tourism. Orlando took me up into the mountains on a collectivo. Here is our tour bus:

    [​IMG]

    Had lunch at a mirador where dozens of hang gliders were catching thermals:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    and hiked up the steep trail to the launch site:

    [​IMG]

    Beautiful views out over Medellin. And then it was time to hike up the hill and catch another collectivo bus for the trip over the mountain and down the steep sinuous Veo San something or other road that dropped back down into the valley. But not before winding up the mountain through pastoral dairy farms that looked like they could have come from the Swiss alps.

    Medellin is a wonderful city, very cosmopolitan, almost European feeling. With all the brick buildings and red tile roofs it has a Spanish Mediterranean feel to it. People are very friendly for such a big city.

    But I've been off the bike for two weeks between crossing the Darien and bike repair. It's time to hit the backroads. Maybe tomorrow.

    Buenos noches mi amigos de aventura,
    Juan Medellin
  20. mario33

    mario33 Howling around...

    Joined:
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    Warsaw, Poland
    Good to hear from you John... We want a pic of Sherpa's refurbished front ! :clap
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