Gringo in Paradox - Travels in Colombia

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Champe, Nov 24, 2019.

  1. Champe

    Champe Long timer

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    Fish

    It would generally be a good guess that my stomach issue was caused by seafood. But this was not the case. I had not eaten fish for more than a week. I see fish on tables in the market, unrefrigerated with no ice, lying in the sun for hours. I have eaten fish many times in restaurants without issue though.

    The day I got sick I had breakfast in the hostel with a sweet young thing ..Sara. I would have skipped that breakfast had I not had charming company. They were serving fried egg with a hot dog. The starch was deep fried yucca soaked in oil. I did take one bite of that too. Yuck. I ate it anyway, since my mind was elsewhere. I do not know if that caused my issue but I do remember not being impressed with the menu that morning. Sara was smarter. She ordered a fruit salad….skip the rest.
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  2. Champe

    Champe Long timer

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    It is darkest just before dawn

    I have not laid out my issues much because I was hoping they were transient. They are a bit depressing.

    But minutes ago, I went to my little corner hangout in a remote stairway, at the hostel, where nobody goes. I like doing internet stuff there. And I got a big surprise. Someone else was there. It was the only other person who I have ever seen in that spot….Sara.

    She had left the hostel when we had breakfast together last time. And now she is back ! My mood is much better now.
  3. Lesharoturbo

    Lesharoturbo Nerdly Adventurer

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    I don't know how handy you are, but I've had pretty good success of taking the fan blade off of radiator fans and cleaning out the carbon buildup and putting it back together. I had one on my CRV that I got about another Year's worth of Life out of by doing that. It was blowing fuses as well and then sometimes just wouldn't turn.
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  4. JuddS

    JuddS Been here awhile Supporter

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    What is the cost to have the bolt sent in from the USA? I may be heading down there in about 10 days and could bring it, but not sure how colombian mail works if I'm in Colombia and need to send it to you up north. I will not be up that way. I'm still at a 50/50 for heading down there.
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  5. ALLMOSTHERE

    ALLMOSTHERE Make to best of everything

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    go on mercado libre Colombia and type in respuestos tkm 390 there is a out fit with a couple wrecks as far as screws go, find a moto shop that half decent organized which is rare but they may have a pail full of hardware that you may have to pick thru you won't find this stuff at a hardware store the fan is probable cheaper new at a ktm shop store it takes a couple days if they have to order from Bogota good luck senoritas are next best thing to having a serviceable bike
    ask the ktm parts guy in bogota if he has the screws for the chain cover I'm sure he can help you tempImagegTfD6U.jpg tempImages33sfi.jpg
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  6. JuddS

    JuddS Been here awhile Supporter

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    My strategy would be to go back to those guys who likely took the pieces and tell them this. I'd say to them that I really needed those "lost" pieces and that you found them for like 20,000. But that you have to pay like 100,000 to get them shipped. I would say that if they can please take one more day and try to look around or ask around town to see if anyone has found them or look in the garbage for them, then you will really be thankful and give them the fill 120,000. I'm not sure the numbers you want to use, but they have to be more than they can be sold for online or wherever.

    I'd make sure to not call them stolen and make sure to be thankful if they can "help" you "find" them and then give them a day before you come back. I've had this work a few times for me in somewhat similar situations over the years.

    Perhaps you have a better strategy though.
  7. ALLMOSTHERE

    ALLMOSTHERE Make to best of everything

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    I have had all kinds of needs for things related to my Moto. Being a Engineer by trade and solving mechanical issues for more than 45 years
    I have heavily modified it during during lock down last year What a pain in the ass changing the exhaust for one that built for a F800r a Acrapovic tempImageOOoAKA.jpg tempImagemAT1LK.jpg it was cheap and new I also built my own custom pannier racks for touratech panniers and base for a top box my panniers are symmetrical 38 -38 and the same width as the BMW Vario Disasters, with 30 more litres of capacity a the exhaust was moved in about 2 inches this is difficult to do with my fuel tank being under the seat all custom not available in stores
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  8. ALLMOSTHERE

    ALLMOSTHERE Make to best of everything

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    I wouldnt deal with the Costenos If you find a good one let me know Doing maintenance on the side walk is just asking for trouble you will find nothing is cheap if you operate this way The parts are already sold in my opinion
    Mercado libre has a cover for 50 thousand and he probably has Screws too
    Colombia has a very good system when you buy stuff on line All you have to do is sign up and punch in a address and pay at a Effectivo they are every where Pay Cash its simple you will get your stuff in 3 days or less
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  9. Champe

    Champe Long timer

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    Thank you gentlemen (and lady) for the support. Helping me get my bike back on the road is so, so much appreciated.

    This morning I went back to the sidewalk gang. I offered 100,000 for my original. parts. That did not fly but they saw the issue with my epoxy plug over the hole leaking oil. They sent someone out to find another cover and came back with a used one. The area is lined with shops so they did the screw exchange game a few times and finally got all the right screws.

    With the bike no longer leaking I had them change the oil too.

    John, the boss, did all the work this time. He wanted to go for a test ride and I let him. Of course the coolant temperature was in the red when he got back…I forgot to tell him that the fan was not working.

    He thought he could fix it, so I let him loose on it. He removed the fan and tested it directly off the battery. It was sticking in one spot. So he passed it off to an electrical specialist right there. That guy had it apart and together a couple of times but it was still not right. So John and I took a walk down an alley full of machine shops and generator rebuilders. A rebuilder put it on his workbench and messed with it a little. Came back and said …it’s no use…we need a new one.

    So John went a bit further afield alone, once on a bike, but came back empty several times. Finally they ordered one from out of town. It will be here tomorrow.

    I am leery of free lance mechanics, and shop ones too. I used to work as a Porsche Audi technician myself though, and we are not all crooks. My bosses at the shop maybe, but not the mechanics. So I got along well with these guys. They were telling me jokes, bought me drinks, and were very friendly. Everything was in Spanish, except when they tried out a few bars of English on me. I helped with an extra hand on other bikes occasionally so I was probably not the typical gringo.

    Today I never left the bike. I needed drinks several times but got them at nearby shops and vendors passing by. I think I bought a drink from every street vendor that came by…at least four. I was there almost all day and it was hot.

    So far it looks like the bike will be ready tomorrow. And no limp mode is necessary. We are working in front of a tire shop that is friendly to us. We can put valuables inside there. And they have a front tire for me. If everything works out tomorrow, I may get that too, so the bike will be 100% again.
  10. Lesharoturbo

    Lesharoturbo Nerdly Adventurer

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    To bad about the fan, seems wrong it died so quickly. Glad you got it sorted. (Almost)
  11. Champe

    Champe Long timer

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    Well, I see the dire warnings after I get home. The bike is at a parqueadero across the street from the mechanics sidewalk. Parts are locked in the tire shop. Btw, the sidewalk has two or more competitors, so this is sort of capitalistic. Survival of the fittest. All of them are pretty busy though.

    When this saga ends, hopefully manana, I am going to try and get a group picture of them. If I understand their babble correctly, I think they think a group picture is their idea already.

    I think you might worry a little if you saw any of them in a dark alley.
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  12. caribryder

    caribryder Adventurer Supporter

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    So True, though out SA
  13. Champe

    Champe Long timer

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    The cooling fan on the original KTM 390 was famous for failing early. I asked the dealership manager if they fixed that in the second generation. He said yes, definitely. Oh well.

    Could this be my fault ? Yes. The outer edges of the fan are scuffed bad. And the surrounding shield is grooved, like from sand or mud. There was no dirt in there when it was taken apart though. The sidewalk electric man said he saw evidence of water in the case and showed me a discolored screw. There is an o ring for the case cover. No water when taken apart.

    Packing the radiator with mud multiple times certainly did not help matters. I plead guilty to abusing the fan.There has been no more problem with that, since I got the fender extension so probably we have the permanent solution.
  14. caribryder

    caribryder Adventurer Supporter

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    Dan what's the name of that map book?
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  15. Ohio_Danimal

    Ohio_Danimal If I die trying, at least I tried Supporter

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    Pretty sure it’s in my top case. I’m working on the bike tomorrow. I’ll take a look and get back to you.
  16. Champe

    Champe Long timer

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    Sidewalk mechanic fail

    You guys were right. The fan replacement did not go well. The part was supposed to arrive yesterday but it did not. So they told me to check back at noon today. At that time they were buttoning it up and said it was done. But the fan did not run when I was there. They jumped it but it still did not run. They claimed it was a bad sensor, but I don’t believe it, because the fan would not run, even when jumped. I asked for the old fan, but they said it was thrown away and not available.

    Right now the bike is back at the hostel. The bike is hot and it is getting dark, so I will try to remove the fan myself tomorrow. I will know if it is the old fan from the blade damage.

    There is a Bajaj dealer here who will sell me a fan for a Bajaj Ns200, which I think is identical. He will not do any work on my bike though. He says try Barranquilla. He does not have a name. Well, I have had no luck in Barranquilla before so I will do what I can tomorrow myself. If I am still stuck I will do a long road trip….probably to Medellin.

    Thankfully the fan is not needed on the open road, and the oil is fresh and not leaking. I know there are several KTM dealers in Medellin. Is there a shop you guys recommend ?
  17. ALLMOSTHERE

    ALLMOSTHERE Make to best of everything

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    oh god there are a ton of KTMs in Medellin , Calle 10a between Carrera 36 and 43 in Poblado lots of higher end bike shops
    a few blocks away is Parque lleras
    if you follow the 10a down hill it turns into calle 10 towards the downtown airport the first big roundabout has a KTM power shop store
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  18. ALLMOSTHERE

    ALLMOSTHERE Make to best of everything

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    Try not to seize your engine , this is risky in the mountains without a fan The air is of a lower density at high altitude Meaning less cooling effect on
    your Radiator
    You have to climb from the Magdalena River Valley and its hotter than hell there
    Puerto Berrio is the route I presume you are taking you climb 150 km Up then Down 50 to get to Medellin
    the fans on my f700 are on all the time when climbing in the higher altitudes 2000 + meters speed 50 - 60 kph
    good luck
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  19. Champe

    Champe Long timer

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    Couldn’t wait. Removed the fan. It looks to me like a used one, but not my original. I have a test light so I checked the plug. Hot comes on when the temperature gauge hits five bars. Perfect. Plugged in the fan while it was removed and the bike hot. The fan did not start. So. I gave it a fairly vigorous assist and it started. So that’s it’s MO.

    There is light resistance in several spots if you turn the blades by hand. The original fan had one spot like that. The old fan blew fuses. The “new “ one at least does not blow fuses. KTM fuses are scarce around here.

    I think I will just ask for my money back for the fan. Finish the job myself with a Bajaj fan.

    Actually the fan in question is a Spal, made in Italy. They were common upgrades on early Dukes. Now they are standard…apparently on Bajaj too.
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  20. Champe

    Champe Long timer

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    Right. I do not want to heat stress the motor if I can help it. I have been to the limit a few times now though so I know more or less when to back off. There are two levels of automatic shut down. First you lose the throttle…all you have is idle. Then you get total shutdown. Cannot restart. After only about ten minutes of rest, the temperature gauge will be normal again and everything works, except a check engine light will be on. I do not relish repeating the above scenario.

    I have heard of people wiring in a manual over-ride switch. I am considering that too.
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