Canada2Argentina - Going outside to play for 6 months!

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by marcoue, Jul 8, 2016.

  1. tonyjuliano

    tonyjuliano Grumpy Santa

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2006
    Oddometer:
    418
    Location:
    Philly, Yo!
    No, never have ridden up, as it's always me and my signicant other - and she steers clear of bikes. Haven't been this year, we usually come up in September, and we are skipping this years visit due to some other commitments - boo!

    But we will be back next year, that's for sure, already have our regular apartment on St. Hubert reserved.
    #41
  2. marcoue

    marcoue Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2008
    Oddometer:
    526
    Location:
    Montréal, Québec
    My companion on this trip will be a mechanical assembly of complex parts (my bike!) and will probably need a little bit of TLC, a lot of maintenance and some repairs in the coming months.

    I’m not a mechanic, but I want to be as autonomous as possible in order to reduce costs and allow me to manage problems in remote areas.

    I have done the basic maintenance of my motorcycle for the past 10 years so I am able to these tasks without much difficulty:
    • Engine Oil Change
    • Final Drive Oil Change
    • Gearbox oil change
    • Brake fluid change
    • Final drive lubrification
    • Changing brake pads
    • Puncture Repair
    • Tire change (not always easy, however!)
    • Changing the alternator belt
    • Changing spark plugs
    • Adjusting valves
    • Air Filter Cleaning
    I’ll also have a GS911 to connect to the onboard computer to allow me to read the error codes if present.

    tools (1).jpg

    Toolboxes 12″X9″ Doskogill
    Screw drivers 2X
    Tire iron bars 8″ 3X
    Oil filter tool BMW
    Multi-function knife Victorinox
    Pressure Gage (tires)
    Wise Grip 6”
    Kit Allen Key (Hex) 1.27mm, 1.5mm, 2mm, 2.5mm, 3mm, 4mm, 5mm, 6mm, 8mm, 10mm
    Ratchet key 5/8 8”
    Ratchet key 1/4 (Screw driver style) 6mm
    Torx
    Torx socket 1/4 T7, T8, T9, T10, T15, T20, T25, T27, T30, E7, E8 25,00
    Torx socket 5/8 T25, T30, T40, T45, T50, T55, E7, E10, E12 25,00
    Ratchet adaptor
    Extenters 2″and 6″ ( 5/8″)
    Hex adaptor for front wheel removal
    Sockets 1/4″ 5mm, 5,5mm, 6mm, 7mm, 8mm, 9mm, 10mm, 11mm
    Sockets 5/8″ 12mm, 13mm, 14mm, 15mm, 5/8, 17mm, 3/4
    Hex socket 5/16, 6mm
    Mini screw drivers 6 sizes
    Valve stem remover
    Small hammer
    Spark plug cap remover BMW
    Spark plug socket 14mm
    Brake oil cap remover BMW
    Tire puncture kit Genuine Innovations, tools, plugs
    Electrical pliers
    GS911
    Tire pump CyclePump
    Multi use screw driver kit
    Cutters
    Long-nose pliers
    Broken screw remover
    Feeler gauges
    Wrench set 12 X (6mm to 17mm)
    BeadPro Tire Bead Breaker

    I will also carry various small replacement parts and maintenance supplies. This will be the topic of my next post!
    #42
    damasovi and stromsavard like this.
  3. CourtRand

    CourtRand Been here awhile Super Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2009
    Oddometer:
    384
    Location:
    Quito, Ecuador
    Unless you are going deep into the Amazon on a raft or canoe, you won't need malaria medication - at least for Ecuador and I am pretty sure its the same in Peru and Bolivia. You should however bring with you plenty of ciprofloxacin to help fight the bacteria in the food that you are not used to. You can buy this over the counter all over Latin America without a prescription. Enjoy the ride. I am sure the things you think are important will turn out not to be things that are really important to prepare for.

    We hope to see you in Ecuador. Be sure to stop by our shop for some route advice and feel free to use our shop as a mid-point in your trip to receive mail or packages. We're hope we can help! See you in the middle of the world!
    #43
  4. marcoue

    marcoue Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2008
    Oddometer:
    526
    Location:
    Montréal, Québec
    Your spot was already in the GPS!!! I will definitely stop by.

    Do you guys carry supplies for the GSA? Oil, filters, tires?

    Thanks for the great advice. Can't wait to visit your great country!
    #44
  5. CourtRand

    CourtRand Been here awhile Super Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2009
    Oddometer:
    384
    Location:
    Quito, Ecuador

    We don't carry supplies really - we source them locally at our BMW dealer for the filters and other BMW parts We can give you a deal on Motul Oil which is what we use in our bikes and tires - well those you want to buy in Colombia or Peru where the taxes are much less. A Heidenau tire costs $380 here. We do carry Continental tires which we are happy to sell to cross-continental travelers at about cost (don't tell our distributor).
    #45
  6. marcoue

    marcoue Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2008
    Oddometer:
    526
    Location:
    Montréal, Québec
    Ok, thanks for the tips! 380$ for a pair?
    #46
  7. CourtRand

    CourtRand Been here awhile Super Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2009
    Oddometer:
    384
    Location:
    Quito, Ecuador
    $380 just for the rear tire!
    #47
  8. marcoue

    marcoue Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2008
    Oddometer:
    526
    Location:
    Montréal, Québec
    Ouch, I have an new one in the basement, I thing I'll carry it and do a change in Panama!

    Otra ves, muchas gracias y asta luego!
    #48
    CourtRand likes this.
  9. marcoue

    marcoue Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2008
    Oddometer:
    526
    Location:
    Montréal, Québec
    A motorcycle is not a warehouse! But I still have to keep a limited selection of supplies that will allow me to overcome any mechanical problems and do the basic maintenance each 5000 km.

    As mentioned in a previous post, I will have all the tools I normally use for maintenance of the bike at home.

    I made a point, for the past 10 years, to use only what is in my small portable box in order to be able to reproduce these tasks on the road.

    The challenge here is to keep a sufficient variety and an acceptable amount of stuff. It should not be too heavy and limited the essentials.

    Also keep in mind that I will have access, in a very limited way, to BMW dealers in major cities. However, it is well known that sometimes, inventories are kept very low.

    First point, I made the decision to keep an Antenna Ring in case of malfunction. This failure is well documented on the web and considering that I'll often be in inaccessible areas and far from major cities, there is no doubt in my mind that I have to protect myself so I'm not stuck with a dead machine because of a 100$ part.

    2016-08-21-BMW-Antenna-Ring.jpg

    Same for the pump controller petrol (fuel pump controlling).

    2016-08-21-BMW-Fuel-pump-controler.jpg

    I will use a K & N filter so I'll carry small containers of cleaner and oil (enough for 8 to 10 cleaning).

    For tires. Although I'd rather not, I'll carry an extra rear tire (Heidenau K60) for a change in Panama, just before taking the boat across the Darién Gap. I hope to be able to complete the journey with these tires. I am also able to repair a minor puncture with a patch kit and a pump. I also keep an inner tube in case of more serious problem.

    On my laptop, I have a copy the BMW DVD for maintenance and instructional videos to help me during the less common and complex tasks.

    Obviously, preparation is the best prevention so I made a complete maintenance check before my departure (engine oil change, differential, transmission, brakes, spark plugs, brake pads, sync injectors ...).

    Here is m y list.

    2016-08-21-Maintenance-stuff.jpg

    Servicing items Comments Price
    WD-40 Small bottle 10,00
    Oil filters and o-rings BMW 2X 40,00
    Octane booster 2X STP, 3X 10 ml plastic 10,00
    Cleaner + oil + sealing grease for K&R filter K&N 99-5050 20,00
    Battery for Alarm remote CR2032 10,00
    Batteries for Alarm CR123A Lithium 3 volt X2 10,00
    Extra HID bulb and balast In case of failure 40,00
    Spare Tube 18" In case of major puncture 20,00
    Ti-raps multiple sizes 10,00
    Rubber gloves 20 pairs, for oil changes 10,00
    Yellow work gloves 1X 10,00
    Fuses 15 amp, 7.5 amp, 10,00
    Fog lights - Replacement support 35,00
    Spokes (Wheels) 1X front, 1X back 10,00
    Oil side glass cover BMW 40,00
    Antenna Ring BMW 55,00
    Fuel Pump Controler BMW 160,00
    Water Bottle 650 ml Nalgene, for emergency oil 10,00
    OEM Shift Lever BMW 120,00
    Duck tape 2,00
    Liquid gasket 10,00
    JB Weld 10,00
    Anti-seize lubricant 5,00
    Ipoxy glue 10,00
    Dielectric Grease 10,00
    BMW - Workshop DVD 25,00
    Fiche Part (PDF)
    Maintenance DVD 40,00
    Extra Rear Tires Heidenau 200,00

    The next post will cover my choices with respect to the protective clothing to face the heat, cold and rain!
    #49
  10. varago

    varago Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2012
    Oddometer:
    135
    Location:
    ORFORD and Rawdon, Qc, cold almost all time
    Salut Marcoue, assurément, je vais te suivre. Heureux pour toi que tu le réalise après toutes ces années passées au service des autres. Bon voyage, bonne route et surtout ride safe!
    #50
  11. varago

    varago Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2012
    Oddometer:
    135
    Location:
    ORFORD and Rawdon, Qc, cold almost all time
    J'oubliais.... As tu prévu apporter une vielle toile pour mettre ta moto a l'abri du regard des gens mal intentionné?
    #51
  12. marcoue

    marcoue Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2008
    Oddometer:
    526
    Location:
    Montréal, Québec
    Bonjour Virago! Je vais écrire en anglais afin que tous comprennent!

    Thanks for the kind words. I hope I'll keep you entertained and I can't wait to read you comments!

    As for the cover, yes, indeed, it's on the list. I got a cheap one on eBay. Although it's not a high quality item, tt's black, light and compact and the perfect size to hide the bike!
    #52
  13. yokesman

    yokesman Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2008
    Oddometer:
    2,030
    Location:
    SW. Idaho
    usually the oiled filters can be washed in hot water, mineral oil it in a pinch, this was our process when we raced Karts many years ago,the oil was for the dirty tracks only.
    #53
  14. marcoue

    marcoue Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2008
    Oddometer:
    526
    Location:
    Montréal, Québec
    One of the challenges of a long motorcycle is to face the various elements. On the same day, it can sometimes be very hot, a few hours later, very cold and if you are very lucky, you can get a nice rainfall to reward you for all your efforts.

    On previous trips, I suffered from the cold and rain. I promised myself to better prepare at this for this trip to South America.

    In 2008, I travelled across Canada in summer. I did not have a heated vest. Big mistake! I quickly learned that a sunny and warm morning can turn to a cold and rainy afternoon.

    At that time, I wore a BMW Rally 2 Pro suit. Although it's a good product, I noted two major problems. First, it is not waterproofed. To ride in the rain, you need to stop and put on a internal liner. It is sometimes very complex and impractical. Just imagine having to remove the boots and then remove the pants, adding the lining, putting back the pants on and do the same thing with the jacket! And all this under the rain!

    Moreover, even when this lining, the outer shell gets wet, becomes very heavy and sometimes takes a long time to dry. On some occasions, when hanged in the evening, it was still wet the next morning.

    In 2010, during a trip to Labrador, I changed my strategy.

    Instead of adding the inner liners, I put on a raincoat over my suit. A little better, but the trouble having to stop and fight with the outer lining is still present, but the worst was the lack of comfort with all these layers. I sometimes found myself with a t-shirt, a heating vest, the Rally 2 Pro jacket and raincoat. Unbearable!

    So I turned to an all-in-one solution. A rainproofed suit. I chose the BMW GS Dry.

    Here is a good review for those interested.

    http://ridermagazine.com/2014/02/28/bmw-gs-dry-suit-review/

    My first tests revealed that it is much lighter than the Pro Rally 2, better adjusted, but much less ventilated.

    Indeed, it only has 4 openings that are quite effective to produce an air flow, but the pants are very hot, simply because that there is no possibility of ventilation.

    2016-08-22-BMW-GS-Dry.jpg

    So I added a "BMW Motorrad Motorcycle Cool Down vest". Very helpful and I would have loved to have this piece of equipment before, even with my Rally 2 Pro, especially when I crossed the Death Valley a few years ago!

    2016-08-22-BMW-Cooldown-Vest.jpg

    In terms of rain, the suit performed as described. I stayed nice and dry and I did not have to stop to add anything! Happiness!

    You understand that I now have a heating jacket. I usually wear it when temperatures are below 16 degrees Celsius. Brand: Powerlet with wireless controller.



    My helmet is a BMW System 6 with an intercom system. The big advantage of this helmet is that it is modular, that is to say, it is possible to raise the front and drive with my face in the wind. Essential in my case!

    2016-08-22-BMW-System-6-helmet.jpg

    As for gloves, I'll bring 4 pairs:

    BMW AllRound: Cool weather
    BMW GS: Hot weather
    Heated Gloves (inner lining) of Powerlet: Very Cold Weather
    Arc'teryx outer shell: Very rainy days

    In terms of boots, I have, a long time ago, made a controversial choice to wear only my hiking boots while I ride my motorcycle. The reason is simple. The main motivation, when I travel by motorcycle, is adventure and this, most of the time, leads me to places where it is impossible not to go small or long walks in the mountains or in nature. The storage space available on the bike does not allow me to carry an extra pair of boots so they are the ones that I always wear.

    There is a slight disadvantage in terms of protection and sometimes it's a little less comfortable due to lack of ventilation. But this is a concession I'm willing to do.

    My choice fell on Bora² Mid GTX Hiking Boot Arc'teryx, made of Gore-Tex® with a removable liner.

    2016-08-22-Bora-Mid-GTX-Hiking-Boot-Arcteryx.jpg

    Those boots are, in my opinion, the best on the market. Without going into too much detail, it was nothing short of a revelation and an end to my suffering feet! The Adaptive Fit removable liner inside these versatile and technical hiking boots eliminate any friction. I'm done with toes that hit the end of the boot on downhill walks and blisters due to long days of walking!

    On the bike, they are ultra-light, fully waterproof and ventilated. What joy in cold, hot or wet weather.

    Small bonus, it is possible to walk only with the liner in the evening because it is the sole is strengthened.

    Clothing - Price
    BMW System 6 Helmet 800,00
    BMW Bluetooth intercom system 600,00
    Helmet spare Parts 100,00
    Helmet charger 0,00
    BMW Jacket GS Dry 800,00
    BMW Pants GS Dry 700,00
    BMW Hydro Vest
    Hicking boots 400,00
    Heated vest 300,00
    Heated vest remote controler 0,00
    Batteries for heated vest controllers 10,00
    Heated gloves (liner) 100,00
    Motorcycle gloves 300,00
    Plexus 30,00
    Nanotips 25,00
    Ear Plugs 10,00
    Total: 4 175,00

    The next post will cover camping and hiking equipment.
    #54
    stromsavard and yankee like this.
  15. mattn

    mattn Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2016
    Oddometer:
    24
    Location:
    Marble Falls, TX
    In! Looking forward to riding along once you head out.
    #55
  16. marcoue

    marcoue Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2008
    Oddometer:
    526
    Location:
    Montréal, Québec
    Great! BTW, I'll be passing right beside your town on my way down! My plan is to stay a day in Austin to do the final maintenance on the bike (oils) and dive into Mexico the next day via Laredo or Piedras Negras.
    #56
  17. Pete_Tallahassee

    Pete_Tallahassee Grampy

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2006
    Oddometer:
    421
    Location:
    Tallahassee. FL. USA
    I too am booked on the Stahlratte for Nov 14th. Leaving Tallahassee on or before Oct. 1. See you on the road!
    #57
  18. marcoue

    marcoue Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2008
    Oddometer:
    526
    Location:
    Montréal, Québec
    Wow! Great news. Do you have a blog or a thread here?
    #58
  19. Pete_Tallahassee

    Pete_Tallahassee Grampy

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2006
    Oddometer:
    421
    Location:
    Tallahassee. FL. USA
    I just got a SmugMug account and I'm learning to post pic's. Bought a GoPro and I have a point and shoot Canon camera. I will probably not post much until deep into Mexico. When I do, it will be here.
    #59
  20. Ruud109

    Ruud109 Dutch in Barcelona

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2009
    Oddometer:
    380
    Location:
    Barcelona, Spain
    Awesome trip Marc, awesome bike (I sooo want an R1200GS) and enjoying your preps and they way you are sharing it. Will be following your ride report for sure!

    Good luck counting the days to sept 11

    Ruud
    #60