2017 TAT, Ocean to Ocean in 12 days, Planning

Discussion in 'Americas' started by KenCM, Jun 28, 2017.

  1. PittsDriver

    PittsDriver Fuse lit.... Supporter

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    Don't ya just love how many people are ready to say "It can't be done!" Kudos for having a real stretch goal on speed/distance/schedule. It's not for every one, especially those that like to smell the roses and do some bird watching along the way but obviously you've done the ride before and know what's ahead of you.

    Somewhere up there in this thread you said something like "did it in 20 days on a less capable bike." What'd you mean by that? What "more capable" are you riding/doing this time that will chop 40% of the time off your trip? We rode the TAT from Andrews NC to Port Orford in 2015 and it took 20 days of haulin' ass, riding long days, camping (no searching for places to sleep), AND skipping big sections of what we called "gratuitous gravel" like, oh, the entire TAT track through the state of Oklahoma.

    So, I'm personally going to be really cheering for you and definitely think you ought to give it your best shot. Do I think you can ride coast to coast in 12 days? Absolutely. Do I think you can do it riding nearly all of the TAT? LOL, I guess we'll see!
  2. DCTFAN

    DCTFAN VIN# JH2SD0451GK000002 '16 CRF1000LD

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    Those CAM straps don't look very secure in the back.
    I'd loop/hook it onto the straps itself and zip tie them for added insurance.
  3. KenCM

    KenCM Been here awhile Supporter

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    Wondered if anyone would notice how they are "attached."

    Turns out that the slots in the rack are positioned such that under tension, I don't believe it's possible for those metal ends to slide out.
    If something goes haywire, no harm/no foul since nothing can fall off - neither the bag nor the straps.
    And if something does go haywire, I have the extra straps in the bag to attach it differently.

    I like the way it is now because I believe that steel rack is so thin and the slot edges so not rounded that they will cut nylon given a little time and vibration.
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  4. DCTFAN

    DCTFAN VIN# JH2SD0451GK000002 '16 CRF1000LD

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    You missed some relevant history but I believe this post explains a lot:
    Instead of the KTM, they are on CRF1000L Africa Twins.
    I'm rooting for them also.
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  5. KenCM

    KenCM Been here awhile Supporter

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    Thanks! We'll take all the cheering we can get!

    Here's the exact quote to which you refer:
    "...substantially less capable setup."
    So "setup" not "bike."

    So here's what I meant by that and some of the reasons why I think we can cut 40% of the time:

    I spent a lot of time last year getting gear on and off the bike each day - somewhere on the order of a little more than an hour between unpacking and packing.
    With the change in luggage, that should be reduced to around ten minutes.

    I lost hours to a blown front fork seal and triple that to rear tire problems. I estimate at least a full day lost.
    I believe the setup this year has substantially less potential for those two specific problems as well as a reduced potential for other mechanical issues (like loss of the kickstand).

    I carried 112 pounds of gear last year.
    I've reduced that by roughly 50 pounds this year.
    And, most of that weight was up a lot higher on the bike last year.

    My lighting situation last year all but precluded riding after dark.
    The couple of times I did, it was simply dangerous.
    The photon cannon I'm running this year turns night into day within about 50 yards.

    I was literally wedged into the space between the seat and the luggage last year.
    Sometimes it was so tight that I had to rock back and forth to push the luggage back enough that I could actually sit on the seat.
    That resulted in a rear end so numb that it was actually painful to get off the bike (and I don't use the word "pain" lightly).
    This year I can move around and the seat is much more plush.

    Last year I took the time to change the oil several times.
    This year I'll change it after we reach the West coast.

    I had to slow much more than necessary for turns last year due to the need to monkey with the GPS.
    I also wrecked a couple times before adding a second GPS in Colorado on the occasions I didn't slow enough.
    I've changed to a different GPS with a larger screen and better controls while riding so I don't have the issues that led to those delays.

    Last year, I camped only one night and spent a lot of time getting to a hotel in the evening and then back to the point I left the trail in the morning.
    This year, we're planning to camp most nights out West and in the East if we're stopping for the day and no hotel is very near (as in a few miles).
    We're prepared to camp every night if necessary.

    Last year I lost a full day getting out of a pickle I got into due to my choice to attempt a single-track detour around a rock slide of which I was not previously aware.
    This year, we have a bypass route prepared for that slide - and it's on roads, not mountain goat trails.
    While we may find some new stupid things to do this year, we will NOT be taking unknown single track.

    Finally, riding the 450 was simply more fatiguing than riding the AT.
    Always working that clutch and shift lever...
    This year, I don't have to worry about either of those. :clap

    EDIT: I almost forgot the biggest time/effort saver!
    This year I have a buddy to help pick up my bike.
    RG1984, Aces 6, larryboy and 4 others like this.
  6. DCTFAN

    DCTFAN VIN# JH2SD0451GK000002 '16 CRF1000LD

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    This, to be proven true, is what I am most interested to find out, also.
    The reason to take a big bike on the TAT.
    How the DCT helps on long sustained offroad riding.
    As for me and my (lack thereof) riding skills, it well may be a handful in couple of places...
    RG1984 and larryboy like this.
  7. Drumbrakes

    Drumbrakes Been here awhile Supporter

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    That's an important point, combined with getting your luggage light AND low down.
    I had a very light bike and was traveling pretty light compared to some. However due to the shape of my bags, I had the heaviest stuff high and far back, which really screws with your ability to lift the bike Solo. You get the best leverage lifting from the handlebar, but if you have weight at the back, the back stays down and the front wheel lifts. That leaves you needing to lift from the middle, which is harder, (especially if you've £%&*ed your back) remove the luggage, or get your buddy to help. by the end a tough day with many falls, you need to take the bags off and get a buddy to help.

    However, as far as time savings: Are you allowing extra time for you to help your buddy pick up his bike?

    It's a year to the day since I started my TAT ride, so I'm getting very nostalgic. This year I'm living through other people's RRs.
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  8. garrett3

    garrett3 Adventurer

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    New bag looks like a great time saver. Friday can't get here soon enough
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  9. Kilmern

    Kilmern Been here awhile

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    Go get em guys!
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  10. KenCM

    KenCM Been here awhile Supporter

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    Charlie don't surf and Garrett don't drop his bike!
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  11. Air Force Vet

    Air Force Vet Been here awhile

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    Wishing you guys nothing but good luck and zero malfunctions!
    Are you going to be updating tnis thread during the ride? Sorry if you already posted that answer.
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  12. KenCM

    KenCM Been here awhile Supporter

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    Thanks for the well wishes.
    We'll start a ride report Friday and cross-link here.
  13. DCTFAN

    DCTFAN VIN# JH2SD0451GK000002 '16 CRF1000LD

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    490Watts Peak output does not leave much excess capacity to run hi-power accessories.
    Hopefully, you will be running at or near peak output at dark with the extra light- no cruisin' allowed :drif
    Honda SM pg 1-11
    I'd pay extra attention to the state of battery in Colorado and onwards if you need to use both the AUX light and the heated grips!
  14. KenCM

    KenCM Been here awhile Supporter

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    I just put an Ammeter in line and the light only draws 50W, so I'm not concerned.
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  15. larryboy

    larryboy Stable genius.

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    That will help you more than anything else. On my 6534 mile blast around the west I could count on my Baja Designs 8" 100 watt race light to guide me long into the night to make up time lost to oil changes, tires changes and thunderstorms.

    A major time loser for me was worn rear tires, I ended the trip on my third rear, but five rear tires would have helped me put the power down and improved late braking. Fresh tires in Moab really made the trip for me, it was full Baja race mode at that point. I checked my notes and noticed that I did have one 505 mile day...my very last day, I was dialed in and riding really good by then, my second to the last day was 450 miles. I'd highly recommend some fresh tires in Moab even if you have tread left, get out of that KLR rider mentality.

    I really picked up my average after I shipped my camping gear home. That was the day before I jumped on the TAT in NM and every day after that the timing worked out about right to ride big miles and end up at motel right when I needed it. I spent a lot of money for very little time sleeping each night, but it was a major time saver.

    Good luck, ride fast, take chances.

    :beer
  16. DCTFAN

    DCTFAN VIN# JH2SD0451GK000002 '16 CRF1000LD

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    OK, in that case, you're good. Just looked up OE heated grips info:
    .
  17. Drumbrakes

    Drumbrakes Been here awhile Supporter

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    Assuming they are the same as the NC750 OE heated grips, put a tiny bit of duck tape or similar over the light on the button of the left grip. It's way too bright for night riding and very distracting.
  18. KenCM

    KenCM Been here awhile Supporter

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    Thanks for that tip!
    They are indeed bright - even in the daylight.
  19. KenCM

    KenCM Been here awhile Supporter

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    Back when I first started considering an auxiliary light, I found how much the heated grips draw (although I seem to have misplaced that information).
    When I saw what the heated grips draw, I knew I'd be OK with the light if I didn't use them both at the same time.
    Now that I know the actual draw of the light I'm not concerned. The wattage listed for the light appears to be at the maximum voltage of 32V - not 12V.
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  20. KenCM

    KenCM Been here awhile Supporter

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    Thanks for the well wishes!
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