Australia - that's one big island

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by -Z-, Dec 27, 2019.

  1. Balanda

    Balanda Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2013
    Oddometer:
    347
    Location:
    Katherine, Australia
    Peregrination , now there’s a word for you :y0!
    #61
    jays100 likes this.
  2. Throttlemeister

    Throttlemeister Long timer Super Supporter

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2007
    Oddometer:
    4,553
    Location:
    Okie near Muskogee
    Great travels from Down Under. Thanks for sharing this!
    #62
  3. Red_dog

    Red_dog Dirt Road Sniffer outerer Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2012
    Oddometer:
    94
    Location:
    Townsville, North Queensland
    So how do you go with this Covid travel limitation mate?. Am looking to do an around Aus trip later in the year (Yes i know, wet season, I’m a bit mad), and with the current limitations on travel. ‍♂️
    #63
  4. neppi

    neppi Long timer

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2017
    Oddometer:
    1,202
    Location:
    Tauranga, New Zealand
    Yeah, C’mooooon -Z-!!! I can’t hold my breath much longer!
    #64
  5. Franque

    Franque Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2015
    Oddometer:
    521
    Location:
    Dallas, Tx -> Aubagne, France
    He's back in France now, this trip was a while ago...
    #65
    Red_dog likes this.
  6. Traveller13

    Traveller13 Cptn. Fluffy

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2013
    Oddometer:
    112
    Location:
    Western Straya
    Great RR, have been following this one closely for a while and love it :)
    #66
  7. Philthy64

    Philthy64 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2009
    Oddometer:
    841
    Great RR - thanks Z.

    Hope the new bike is treating you as well as the Kwaka did

    Cheers

    Philthy
    #67
  8. -Z-

    -Z- Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Aix en Provence, France
    Hello all !


    sorry for the long delay, I've been busy with work lately and not very able to write much.

    Thanks for all your kind comments, yes the trip was in 2017, i'm back home since... But still dreaming to come back to Australia...


    Anyway, here's a few more pics of the SV650S (2002)

    it was a fantastic machine, loved the carb'd V-twin, enough power and good sensation.
    Only downside would be the brakes and fork, jesus that fork was awfull and the brakes quickly show their limits when riding full on... But I guess it was a super cheap entry lever bike back then, so... fair enough...



    DSC_0789 (2).JPG
    DSC_0785 (2).JPG
    DSC_0794 (2).JPG

    Some pics of the Warwick (?) ASBK Round. Troy Bayliss giving the show...
    I might have more pictures if anyone want!

    DSC_0873 (2).JPG
    DSC_0881 (2).JPG
    DSC_0883 (2).JPG


    and myself.... check-out this awesome race number!
    DSC_0989 (2).JPG
    DSC_0989 (2).JPG
    DSC_0999.JPG
    DSC_1003.JPG
    DSC_1006.JPG

    While living on the Gold Coast, I joined a crew called "Four-two" and did many rides with them... A very helpful group of Aussie riders...
    Anyone passing by the southern QLD region should give them a wave!
    #68
    jasiu and Suncoaster like this.
  9. yokesman

    yokesman Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2008
    Oddometer:
    2,771
    Location:
    SW. Idaho
    suzukis have about a 3mm exhaust restriction due to the welds at the head pipe joint, grind it off.
    sv racing has a bleeder valve for the mc, along with some ebc brakes that will get you stopping better.
    a gsxr 600 shock will give you some adjustments. trim the snorkel and enjoy the bike.
    #69
  10. Franque

    Franque Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2015
    Oddometer:
    521
    Location:
    Dallas, Tx -> Aubagne, France
    This trip happened in 2017, I'm fairly certain he no longer owns it.
    #70
  11. -Z-

    -Z- Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Aix en Provence, France
    Yokesman thanks for the advices, but, as of today I no longer own that bike.
    100% agree, for track use it will definitely a bit of work to make it efficient...



    I digged a bit more into my hard driver and find theses pictures!

    It was with the GPX250, out on a go kart track... near wollongong if I remember well.
    The track day fee was crazy cheap. We quickly understand why, the track was in poor condition...
    Different patch, grass, loose gravel...

    Anyway, it was super technical and fun to ride! loved it! We rode until 8 or pm, in the dark, such a good feeling...

    DSC_0438.JPG DSC_0441.JPG
    DSC_0457.JPG
    DSC_0459.JPG
    DSC_0475.JPG


    No pictures from night riding unfortunately!
    #71
    NaMi, jasiu and Richarde1605 like this.
  12. -Z-

    -Z- Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Aix en Provence, France
    Alright, let's get back to that story!


    here's a few pics of my peregrination around Gold Coast hinterland, and the NSW / QLD border..


    Byron Bay lighthouse
    IMG_20180708_120236.jpg

    IMG_20180708_114620.jpg
    Circa 2017!
    IMG_20180708_101622.jpg


    I believe it's part of the "Aussie dream" having a fancy mailbox :)
    IMG_20180708_092057.jpg
    IMG_20180708_133823.jpg
    IMG_20180708_133829.jpg

    Heading to the Brisbane fireworks
    IMG_20181006_170821.jpg
    IMG_20180929_160125.jpg

    Yep that's hail...
    IMG_20180929_181303.jpg
    #72
    Richarde1605, NaMi, MrKiwi and 2 others like this.
  13. yokesman

    yokesman Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2008
    Oddometer:
    2,771
    Location:
    SW. Idaho
    those mailboxes may have been a result of the Gov wanting $ to dispose of them so they put them up as a memorial to bureaucracy,
    #73
    -Z- likes this.
  14. -Z-

    -Z- Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Aix en Provence, France
    here's a few more pics from the race a Warwick. Troy Bayliss def giving a big show!

    DSC_0836.JPG
    DSC_0840 (2).JPG
    DSC_0851 (2).JPG
    DSC_0853.JPG
    DSC_0858 (2).JPG
    DSC_0864 (2).JPG
    #74
  15. -Z-

    -Z- Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Aix en Provence, France
    Alright,

    after some great times enjoying the Gold Coast quality of life
    IMG_20181130_160729.jpg
    IMG_20181201_142552.jpg
    IMG_20181201_142612.jpg

    Back then I only had 2 months left on my visa, so I figured out it was time to move on and go for one last bit of adventure...

    Since a few months I wanted to visit Tasmania. Weatherwise, the end of the year is the best time to go, I was spot on, had the money for it, the time, and the SV was running great!
    The idea was on!

    I convince a friend I had met in Sydney to come over, she bought a used F650GS, pack her bags and was ready to roll! We figured out which date, duration ... and meet in Sydney mid-december.

    The plan was to ride Gold Coast to Sydney, meet my friend, then together we would have rode down to Melbourne thru the alps, catch the ferry, stay 2 weeks in Tasmania, come back to Melbourne and ride back up to Gold Coast. I had to work on the 2 of january for a couple of weeks.

    Obviously it didn't go as planned, but somehow we manage to do it all ( almost )



    here's the beast, SV650S 2002. 75 000kms on the clock.
    fully loaded with gears for all kind of weather, food, tools and camping stuff
    I know that's too much crap, but I had leave my appartment so I had to carry most of my stuff with me.
    IMG_20181202_054601.jpg
    IMG_20181202_054612.jpg

    6 AM departure! It would be a hot day and plenty of kms to do today.
    IMG_20181202_055252.jpg
    IMG_20181202_060551__01.jpg


    I share the road till Port Macquarie with Ben, an aussie friend travelling around on a DR650
    I remember it was a super hot day... probably well above 35°
    IMG_20181202_123032.jpg

    Attached Files:

    #75
  16. Traveller13

    Traveller13 Cptn. Fluffy

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2013
    Oddometer:
    112
    Location:
    Western Straya
    I've seen bikes loaded with way more crap so you're doing ok. Keep it coming mate, still enjoying your views of Aus :)
    #76
    -Z- likes this.
  17. -Z-

    -Z- Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Aix en Provence, France
    I forget to wrote it down, but 2 weeks before leaving Gold Coast, I managed to fucked up the carby...

    I wanted to remove it to give it a clean but while putting back everything together I broke one alloy bit.. luckily I went to "supercheap auto" aka the place to be in australia to get everything car related for cheap... Bought a 15$ sealing paste... Never leaked again!

    IMG_20181022_121056.jpg

    So I safely reached Port Macquarie with Ben, from there we split, he went camping with some other mates and I went to John's place.

    If you guys remember, John had already host me while I was touring the coast going south to north with the 250 GPX.

    Luckily, John was heading to Sydney and Tasmania ( we didn't have the same itinerary tho )

    The next day we rode together down to Sydney, thru the Pacific hway, the iconic Pie in the Sky...

    Sydney is a really nice city.. Very different from Europe.

    Manly
    IMG_20181203_164522.jpg

    Sydney CBD
    IMG_20181203_200524.jpg

    Some nice toys...
    IMG_20181204_114448.jpg

    I stayed a few days in Sydney, catching up with some friends, going to restaurants, the beach...

    Once my friend was ready, we meet at her place and hit the road towards Canberra.

    The plan was to go down to Wollongong thru the Royal National Park and then jump onto Kangaroo Valley and reach Canberra before dark... Everything went as planned! Except for a bit of rain..

    IMG_20181205_111042.jpg
    IMG_20181205_145226.jpg
    IMG_20181205_145237.jpg
    IMG_20181205_145637__01.jpg
    IMG_20181205_174508.jpg

    It was another amazing day riding down under, stunning landscapes, great weather and the bikes were riding good.

    We went to the restaurant with my friend Connor and had a good night of sleep, we hit the road the next day at 7 ... or 9... can't remember... anyway i'm always late the morning and like to take time for my coffee :D
    #77
    Watercat, jwc, MrKiwi and 2 others like this.
  18. jwc

    jwc Ready to go Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2009
    Oddometer:
    422
    Location:
    South Louisiana

    Not sure if the photo of the hammer has to do with breaking “the alloy bit” on the carby, but next time maybe use a smaller hammer........ :lol3

    Nice write up, can’t wait for more.
    #78
    -Z- likes this.
  19. -Z-

    -Z- Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Aix en Provence, France
    @jwc : yea I might have watch too much Top Gear & Jeremy Clarkson saying he can fix everything with a hammer :clap


    here's a few more pics of the famous Manly beach ( northern suburbs of Sydney )

    DSC_0005.JPG
    DSC_0012.JPG

    Gotta love those beach pools.... Plenty of them all around the country
    DSC_0016.JPG



    So, after leaving Canberra, we were planning to sleep somewhere in the Kosciuszko NP or by the coast... in any way it was supposed to be a long riding day.

    But what we didn't know is that, the adventure will really begin TODAY..!

    In fact, after 150kms, we stopped at the petrol station to get some gas, and my bike stopped 20m before to reach the pump...

    It seemed to be an electrical fault... I wasn't really worried as this problem had already occur previously, it seemed to be a faulty battery wiring or something...

    So I took the fairing down and inspected it all. Everything seemed alright..

    I then proceed to a battery swap with the GS650, and suddenly the SV fired up straight away.

    I quickly understood that the issue become more important than what I tought. C**t of a bike!

    While doing all the tests, A friendly guy stopped by and offered is help with tools ... We were all good but he left his number and said that we could come to his place for the night if we ended up stuck.. very kind!

    After 40min of muck around I pushed the bike till the nearest dealer shop ( luckily not far! )

    They proceed to an electrical test and quickly gave me the diagnostic.

    BAD NEWS.

    The alternator was cooked he said.

    brand new part was around 600$AUD
    no stock in australia
    has to come straight from Suzuki japan
    the estimate delivery delay was around 1 month.. ( xmas holidays )

    Well, I had to catch the ferry in 72h..

    I couldn't believe it... My friend was in tears as she didn't feel like finishing the trip alone.
    I was sad aswell, for me it sounds like end of the trip, stuck in the middle of nowhere with a broken down bike that I couldn't fix nor sale..

    IMG_20181206_115915.jpg
    IMG_20181206_123753.jpg


    After 2hours of reflexion we had to make a decision.. I left the SV at the dealer, with the battery in charge overnight.

    I called all the wreckers in Sydney / Melbourne and everybody on ebay but nobody had a second hand alternator or regulator.

    In fact, I was pretty sure my issue didn't come from the alternator but more from the regulator... SV are well known ( like most of the '90 2000 bikes era ) to have issue with heat and regulators.
    The regulator is inside the fairing, doesn't receive any fresh air, and i've been riding a few times under very hot temperatures.

    Anyway, we rang Andrew ( the nice guy who offered us to crush at his place ) ask him if we could come over, he said "yes! of course!" Fantastic! Typical Aussie spirit right here!

    We went 2 up on the GS650, rode to Jindabyne, stopped to get some wine, french cheese and everything to get dinner ready for the 3 of us.

    Andrew has a breathtaking house with a stunning view! He used to be ski instructor in switzerland, europe, NZ & OZ... great night and dinner!

    We went for a little walk around before dark with him
    IMG_20181206_200718.jpg
    IMG_20181206_200725.jpg
    IMG_20181206_201116__01.jpg

    The next day we went to get fresh croissant from the bakery :D

    But then back to reality, The SV was still out of order, and the ferry ticket were already booked, we had to find a solution!

    On the way back to the dealer ;

    IMG_20181207_083741.jpg
    You can see on my face that I wasn't 100% convinced :rofl


    Anyway, we get back to the dealer, with the battery fully charged, the SV started good.
    ( the alternator and regulator are meant to recharge your battery, it means if one part isn't working, the battery will run down and at one point not have any spark comming.. )

    The plan of the day was to ride down to Melbourne ( at least as close as possible ) and try to find a shop that could fix the part or sell the SV as it is / for parts...

    To be safe, I bought a spare battery and a battery charger. that means I could swap battery at any time to keep riding.

    I also decide to unplug all the lights ( dashboard, front and rear light, to "save" some battery )I just kept the stop light and the indicators.

    That was really dodgy and no way that would work... But anyway, we were young and dumb so I packed up my crap start the bike and we hit the road around mid-day.

    Attached Files:

    #79
    jwc, MrKiwi and Watercat like this.
  20. -Z-

    -Z- Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Aix en Provence, France
    So, with about 90% of chances to broke down within the next 50kms we hit the road...


    Straight down to the coast, to reach Melbourne as fast as possible!

    The road was pretty much straight and fast flowing, nevertheless super nice! and bloody hot!

    ( yes they ride on the left lane down under.. )

    IMG_20181207_140432.jpg
    IMG_20181207_132914.jpg

    We stopped at the servo ( aka petrol station in aussie slang ) to get some petrol and cool down, did I already said that it was hot ?


    IMG_20181207_143645.jpg
    IMG_20181207_143711.jpg

    My friend, Juste, from Lithuania, was pretty incredible, she was never tired, never thirsty, nerver hungry, never needed to go to toilet, ready in 10min every morning...

    A few times I wondered if she was human or a machine ??



    The reward after a long day riding,
    IMG_20181207_165458.jpg



    We found an ok camping spot somewhere along the coast, it was our first time pitching the tent, and first time that I had... to pay for accomodation..
    Since I left Gold Coast, around a week ago, I managed to stay at friend's place along the way!
    IMG_20181208_065818.jpg
    IMG_20181208_065841.jpg

    We were super happy, both bikes were working good, surprisingly the SV started good and was riding fine... oh well, let's keep rocking then!


    The next day, early wake up, Juste was obviously ready before me :D And we hit the road again, we had to take the ferry in the afternoon and still had some kms to do...
    In addition I wanted to play it safe timewise, in case we had to stop to swap battery or get lost...


    We reached Melbourne without problems, and even have the time for a coffee with a french friend in st kilda...

    Literally 5kms before to reach the port, this happen :

    IMG_20181208_174513.jpg

    My friend told me that she received some water on her boots, well, I didn't see any puddles on the way and it's not raining.. strange..
    I look at her boots and it wasn't water, it was coolant!

    We were in a bit of a rush to reach the terminal but we removed the front fairings of the bike for a quick inspection...
    The radiator wasn't leaking, hoses were in good condition, coolant level was fine, engine temp ok...

    I conclued that It must have been the overflowing hose...
    Anyway, we didn't have time for a longer check-up, we quickly zoom to the ferry terminal and decided that we would to a longer check while in Tasmania.


    HERE WE GO!

    Bikes loaded up in the "Spirit of Tasmania"
    If I remember well, return tickets for 2 + 2 bikes ( no cabin ) cost us around 1000 dollarydoos

    IMG_20181208_201323.jpg

    We both couldn't believe that we made it to Melbourne!

    Super happy but also a bit worried about the bikes.. Still have to find out why the GS was leaking coolant, and the SV could stop working at any time.

    But at that time we had another problem! Find an accommodation in Tasmania!

    After a few requests on couchsurfing, we got a quick reply from someone in Queenstown, we decided to stay there for 2 days.
    It would be great to relax a bit and enjoy riding without luggages.
    #80
    MrKiwi likes this.