Mexico and Central America Ride Planning and Road Wisdom

Discussion in 'Americas' started by Jeff Munn, May 30, 2006.

  1. jackattack13

    jackattack13 Adventurer

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    Escondido, CA
    I downloaded Maps.Me and Waze. That should be sufficient for my travel needs along with Google Maps. I will be getting a Google Fi account to ensure decent communications both via cell and wi-fi during my travels. I really like that it is month to month. I will dust off an old phone and unlock it for mapping use and basic communication. Thanks all!
    SkizzMan and ScotsFire like this.
  2. wrongturn

    wrongturn Directionally challanged Supporter

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    Seacoast, New Hampshire
    Flog me if you want but I need to ask anyway. Been poking around trying to figure out where I got insurance from last year to go into Mexico. Three of us are heading to Copper Canyon from Texas late March. I remember it being in Tucson, but any suggestions other wise I would take. Thanks
    Dan Diego likes this.
  3. Dan Diego

    Dan Diego Long timer

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    I like Ride Baja (family run, telephone calls) and Baja Bound (net based).

    No flogging, have fun.
  4. McFoil

    McFoil Filthy Pig

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    OKUSA
    I like Adventure Mexican Insurance Services at www.mexadventure.com. They give me quotes from four different underwriters and different levels of coverage. I’ve used this mexadventure for 12 years. I totaled a bike outside of Saltillo and their customer service was excellent and they helped me every step of the way. Including translating for me.
    pceire32, jimmex, wrongturn and 2 others like this.
  5. r'elise me

    r'elise me Been here awhile Supporter

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    Venice CA
    I'm planning a Mexico/CA/SA trip as soon as I get Covid vaccinated, but likely this spring or fall (to avoid summer heat). I surf and ride so I want to load up my '21 diesel Sprinter to do day rides, surf, hike, camp, etc. I've never encountered security issues in MX, but I've never had an attractive, loaded, obviously expensive van with CA plates. Can any of you recommend effective security measures. I'm open to hiring a driver/worker/security guy, etc. I speak pretty fluent Spanish, I'm brown, not white, and I get along great with Mexicans - we have good laughs and they generally treat me well. Haven't run into a bandito yet -but again, I haven't been sporting more than a bike or board in Mexico so far.

    Also wondering if the diesel is going to cause issues in my Sprinter bluetec.
    EZ-D and pceire32 like this.
  6. kantuckid

    kantuckid Long timer

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    Kentucky-Eastern that is!
    Modern diesel vehicles operate in Mexico all over the place. "A thief", "any thief", could care less what cultural heritage or skin color you have so lock stuff up and park in secured parking or maybe you'll become a victim. Any nice shiny newish vehicle is a flag waving for a thief. The plates will be noticed. Most all vehicles go behind closed doors at night in Mexico.
    Otherwise, being a friendly, brown skinned Spanish speaker will win you friends and an enjoyable trip I'm certain.
    Heat wise the western coast of Mexico and CA is often hot in the fall & springtime-go when you can?
    Not to stir the covid pot, but out of curiosity I read yesterday that the CDC recommends against travel from the USA to Mexico based on covid issues. Shot or no shot.
  7. Dan Diego

    Dan Diego Long timer

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    If Mexico or the US thought it wasn’t prudent to travel, they’d shut down the borders like Canada did. Or like many states shut down businesses. Seriously.

    Just take universal precautions.
    r'elise me likes this.
  8. MJS

    MJS Long timer

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    Pemex does not make enough ULSD to supply the Mexican market and is currently authorized to continue to supply LSD until 2025. Near the border regions (i.e. Baja but not Baja Sur) fuel may be imported from the USA and is ULSD. So yes, you may have problems with a US diesel vehicle designed for ULSD while in Mexico. You get ULSD in Panama but don't expect to find it anywhere else in CA. Panama sets a maximum limit of 15 ppm for diesel fuel, Costa Rica sets maximum limits of 50 ppm for diesel fuel. El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua set a 1,000 ppm max limit for diesel fuels utilized in their countries and fuel quality is not regulated in Belize.

    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-...w-sulfur-rules-for-trucks-buses-idUSKBN26908P
    jimmex, r'elise me and ScotsFire like this.
  9. r'elise me

    r'elise me Been here awhile Supporter

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    Valuable info. Thanks very much. So what damage arises from using higher sulpher diesels and is it something an additive, modification or maintenance program can rectify?
  10. MJS

    MJS Long timer

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    I don't know of any additive that will remove excess sulfer from the fuel. As for modification, removal of the exhaust Diesel Particulate Filter and Catalytic converter will prevent them from becoming plugged up but that is illegal and will create a check engine light at a minimum. There is a reason why true overlanders covet older diesel vehicles pre 2009 without DPF.

    You might want to consider if the Sprinter is the appropriate vehicle for your trip. The cost to replace the exhaust system would probably buy you an old gas van. And your trip is going to be a slow one if the truck is in limp home mode. I don't know much about Sprinters but there are several forums dedicated to them and I would think you can get better first hand info from them.

    Also I would not expect to find DEF fluid readily available outside of the northern Mexico border regions so plan to carry an appropriate amount.
    Precis likes this.
  11. Panamericana990

    Panamericana990 n00b

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    Jun 2, 2021
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    Location:
    CDMX
    Hey guys!

    I am new to this awesome community and just came across this forum and thought it's super helpful! I've tried to search for similar threads and hope this is the right one. Please let me know if I should post this somewhere else :)

    I am currently planning a trip from Mexico city to Oregon and I had a few questions:

    1. Since the US land border is closed right now for non essential travel, I was wondering whether I can just drive to Tijuana and then ship the bike to San Diego while I hop on a flight?

    2. I'd like to sell my bike once I get to Oregon - does anyone have experience what's required to sell a mexican vehicle in the states (customs and import taxes etc)? And can anyone recommend a company that can help with that?
  12. jimmex

    jimmex Guero con moto Supporter

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    The non ULSD will clog up your particulate filter and cause you problems. Not sure what the workaround would be if any. Saludos.
  13. MJS

    MJS Long timer

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    Assuming you are not a US citizen if you have the appropriate visa you can cross the border. If you are a US citizen then no problems crossing. "Closed" is more like limited hours at the southern land border crossings.

    Unless the bike has US federally required factory emissions and safety stickers and VIN # it will be impossible to register in the US. Technically not impossible to import but certainly not economically worth it when you can buy the same US vehicle for less than the cost to legalize yours.
    SkizzMan and Panamericana990 like this.
  14. Panamericana990

    Panamericana990 n00b

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    Jun 2, 2021
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    Location:
    CDMX

    Thanks for your quick reply! I am not a German citizen and would be coming for tourist purposes mainly which I am guessing are deemed as non essential.
    I fly to the states frequently to visit friends and such but what I've seen on other sites is that apparently its not possible to cross the land board for touristic reasons?

    Thanks so much for the insights regarding selling the bike in the US. I guess i'll ship it back to Mexico then. Do you have any pointers on docs that I need to prepare to be able to right my bike in the USA legally?
  15. kantuckid

    kantuckid Long timer

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    Might be more logical to fly up here and ride a bike you buy here then resell it here(or have someone sell for you) or ride it back and import into Mexico? Is the tourism happening after you get here or a major aspect of the trip northward itself?
    Where did German citizenship get into the equation?
    In the USA you'll not need to prove it meets the importation requirements mentioned above. In a speeding stop the cops will ask for DL & registration of the MC and your license plate needs to be current. Odds are once your here nobody will ever care if you ride sensibly.
  16. Turkeycreek

    Turkeycreek Gringo Viejo

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    Location:
    Banámichi, Sonora, Mexico
    It is up to the discretion of the guy in the US customs booth and that of his supervisor if you, as a non-US citizen, may cross.
    I know Canadians and Brits have been allowed to cross into the US as long as they declared their intention to return to their own countries without hanging around and doing tourist stuff. An airline ticket in your pocket would work.

    As others mentioned, importing a Mexican bike will be costly and time consuming. most likely not worth the effort. You will probably need a broker and the vehicle will have to be brought to US emissions and safety standards.
    To avoid brain damage I suggest that you
    Sell the Mexican bike in Mexico.
    Fly to Oregon
    Buy a bike
    Have a great ride and enjoy life
    Sell the US bike or figure out how to get it to your next adventure
    Buenes Suerte
    MJS, Cal, ScotsFire and 3 others like this.