Still Wandering in Indiana

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by radianrider, Jul 30, 2017.

  1. 72 Yamaha RD350

    72 Yamaha RD350 Been here awhile

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    Yes, I went with Spencer. Cost me an arm & a leg at the UPS store to ship it due to dimensions. I did go with the Supracore material he recommends for long distance riding in addition to new foam. We'll see. I'm hopeful.
  2. radianrider

    radianrider Adventurer wanna'be

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    Avon, IN If we never go, we will never know
    Got the bike out for a bit yesterday to celebrate the beginning of spring break. Only about an hour as it wasn't necessarily all that warm. Only took one pic, but had a great time just running some backroads and working on getting my skills back after being off the bike most of the winter.

    Not a great pic--got a new phone and I'm not familiar with the camera yet.
    [​IMG]

    Supposed to be really nice (in the 60's) on Thursday so I plan on getting out for a longer ride.
    JB2 likes this.
  3. 72 Yamaha RD350

    72 Yamaha RD350 Been here awhile

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    Very nice. I managed to get my bike out of the basement today and up to the garage. It was a bit sketchy because the lawn is saturated with water and I don't have a lot of tread remaining on my rear tire. I felt it sliding out a few times.

    It is going to be 64F here on Wednesday but I will be in Phoenix through Saturday. I am renting a HD touring bike on Friday for a 300 plus mile loop to see how I like riding a 800lbs hog.

    I received the Spencer seat and it seems to be a vast improvement over stock. I won't really know until I put some hours on it. To that end I've been putting together a trip plan to ride to Alaska in June. We people up here in Minnesota do all kinds of crazy things in the depths of winter. Usually it's placing ridiculous sized orders from seed/plant catalogs. Trip might happen, might not. Stars are aligning as well as they ever will for me to do it. I'm not getting any younger. But it really comes down to the seat and comfort. I'll likely do at least one ride down to Indy and back to see whether I need any seat supplements.
  4. radianrider

    radianrider Adventurer wanna'be

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    Well, getting bike out and putting the skis away is some progress. :lol3

    Interested in your impressions of the rental.

    I spend a lot of time reading reports from people who's trips started out as a "cabin-fever dream," so good luck!

    Let me know when you head this way and I'll buy the coffee.
  5. 72 Yamaha RD350

    72 Yamaha RD350 Been here awhile

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    The rental was, as intended, a learning experience in many ways.

    Two co-workers, one current and one former, came along for the ride. Since I had lived in AZ - I was the tour leader. Even when I lived in AZ I had a hard time scaling a day trip to a reasonable length. The state is so big and there are so many things to see that invariably I bite off more than I (or others around me) can chew. We ended up doing 427 miles without ever getting further than 85 miles from Phoenix. Even I am surprised by that.

    You know why you own your ski boots & skis instead of renting? Same applies to motorcycles. No matter how good the rental is, there is some ill-fitment or unfamiliarity that depreciates the experience.

    Despite this EagleRider having BMW's, I chose the Road King over an R1200RT.
    Complaints:
    a) The heel shifter restricted movement of my left foot - I had no room to adjust the position of my left foot and it made it more difficult to get my foot up onto the board after stopping.
    b) buffeting, buffeting, buffeting - and we're not talking Home Town Buffet here. All three of us had minor but annoying and tiresome buffeting above 50 mph; helmet type didn't matter.
    Compliments:
    a) The Milwaukee Eight 107 is to die for. Torque everywhere. Smooth enough. I honestly can't praise this engine enough. And just think, all it took was Indian to come out as a credible competitor and the bean counters in Milwaukee opened up the coffers for this great piece of engineering.
    b) The seat was all day comfortable. The bars were all day comfortable. We did 427 miles with scenic stops every 60-90 minutes but other than my left foot being stuck in place, I could sit on that bike for as long as I can stand sitting on anything.
    c) Harley speedo was spot on accurate and cruise control was as good as any car I've driven. We did a lot of mountain roads with steep grades. The cruise tracked perfectly.

    Overall, she's a fat b*tch of a bike so it takes far more input than my Strom. At 165lbs I can merely shift my hips an inch and the Strom leans over willingly. The King don't care about that inch nor any amount of hip movement of my weight level. She demands bar input. Not a ton, but some. My memory is the Indian Springfield required more bar input but I'll revisit that on a test ride next month.

    Renting was great in that it got me to desirable roads without a long slog to get there. The downside was a rental doesn't have all the little mods you do to your own bike to make it fit you.
  6. radianrider

    radianrider Adventurer wanna'be

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    Great review. Never ridden an HD and thought about renting one at some point--probably when far from home. Like my own gear. :)

    Wonder if a screen change would have solved the buffeting issues. That would be a deal breaker for me. Like clean air around my helmet.

    It is snowing as I write this, but we had temps in the 60's this week.

    Took a ride on Wednesday late in the afternoon. Spent the morning wandering around northwest side of Indy with a couple of other Miata nuts. Both of them are fighting cancer. My brother is on the upside of the fight and has just been cleared to drive after surgery back in January. The other has just started chemo and radiation. Both doing okay, but it was great to spend time with them enjoying one of my other passions--sportscars!

    Got home about 2:00 and the bike was calling my name.

    I wandered west and south of home. Very few pictures. Indiana is NOT really photogenic at this time of year. Brown seems to be the theme and only the joy of being on the bike and enjoying the warmth of the day makes the ride worthwhile.

    In case you forgot what I ride
    [​IMG]

    A couple of silos just sittin' by the road.
    [​IMG]

    Just because the bike was more interesting than the scenery.
    [​IMG]

    I started the ride with all three layers of my jacket in, but stopped here to get rid of the inner liner. Nice to say it--I was getting hot. Hasn't happened for months. The county is reclaiming landfill areas and turning them into recreation facilities. This is the skeet shooting range. I hadn't seen it, so decided to check it out.

    [​IMG]

    And one last one...an old barn surrounded by brown.
    [​IMG]

    It snowed last night and it is cold enough that the snow is sticking. Not a great way to end spring break, but the promise of spring and longer rides is in the air. I can live with that for now.
  7. 72 Yamaha RD350

    72 Yamaha RD350 Been here awhile

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    I took my own gear. Same downsides as flying with your own ski gear - you gotta haul that stuff around when you aren't wearing it. I used my ski boot bag for my helmet, pants, and gloves. Less of a hassle than 172cm skis and less weight than my ski boots. (Need to get some lighter ski boots.) Jacket went in the checked suitcase. Being round, the helmet smacked the side of my knee as I walked through the airports. I could have checked it but I had to go to Toronto on Monday and then catch a flight to Phoenix through SLC on Tuesday. I wasn't confident that my checked bags would make the switch in SLC. I can live without my jacket, but not without my helmet. Personally, I don't think I would rent without my own gear. Maybe on a spur of the moment thing but having your own gear brings familiarity to an otherwise unfamiliar bike. It's one less thing you need to adapt and adjust to on a bike you've never ridden. Initially the Road King required A LOT of attention as it is much heavier than anything I've ever ridden for more than fifteen minutes in familiar territory. Not having to fidget with helmet fit, jacket fit, and glove fit in those first thirty minutes riding out through morning traffic freed up my mind to focus on the bike. Still, my riding skills were crap after almost six months of winter.

    As far as I am concerned, all Harley rentals should come equipped with fork fangs - they create laminar air flow beneath the front of the tank which vastly reduces buffeting by all accounts. Some rentals do. These didn't. It was the only annoying thing the entire day... particularly above 65mph.

    Sorry to hear about your brother and friend. Cancer sucks. I have lost several high school classmates to cancer in the past 12 months. We're in the 54-55 age bracket.

    By the time I left Indiana at age 22 I was so sick of the color green that the brown of Arizona was appealing and a novelty. By the time I left fourteen years later I was so sick of the perpetual brown landscape. We have three seasons in Minnesota: green, brown, and white. The rotation keeps things fresh. Arizona has gotten a lot of rain this winter so the desert was greener than usual for this time of year.

    One of the places I had been past many times when I lived in AZ was Tonto National Monument. It was always either just ready to close or had just closed every time I passed it. So it was one of the stops on our ride to get off the bikes for an hour of strenuous walking. Tonto NM is adjacent to Roosevelt Lake and the Apache Trail (unpaved).
    IMG-1682.JPG IMG-1685.JPG

    We also rode up to the Woods Canyon Lake entrance on top of the Mogollon Rim in the Ponderosa Pine forest. It was mighty cool up there so we high tailed back to lower elevations for dinner at Kohl's Ranch and some warmth.
    IMG-1692.JPG

    You can see in the picture below I am outfitted in the ADV gear for the ride. Honestly, I don't look good in black leather. ;)

    IMG-1691.JPG

    It was an expensive day but I feel like I got three credit hours of education on the Road King for one credit hour of tuition paid. I'll likely do another rental at some point on a new Heritage Classic but time and place to be determined. Seems like a waste of money to do it on home turf.

    I think I'm settled on keeping the Strom if the Spencer seat does the trick. While I was gone an Atlas throttle lock and tool tube came in the mail for installation next weekend. A fork brace and a speedometer correction device (geez I hate subtracting 6 mph all the time) will be added after those. It doesn't need much for the Alaskan Adventure.

    Just checked the forecast. Radar shows a big snow front hitting in 30 minutes. I wonder how that is going to happen at 37F. Regardless, I am headed down to the river to check the flood level. I saw last night when I got in that a nearby road is closed. Water was creeping up on it last Sunday. Wife said they closed it on Monday.
    AZ Desert Dog likes this.
  8. radianrider

    radianrider Adventurer wanna'be

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    Now I want to go see AZ!

    And it wasn't buffeting...the HD was attempting to throw you off for not wearing black and orange. :lol3
    72 Yamaha RD350 likes this.
  9. Fireman1000

    Fireman1000 Long timer

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    I'm diggin that Scrambler.
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  10. radianrider

    radianrider Adventurer wanna'be

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    I had no idea how much I was going to like it when I bought, but it really is as good as all the reviews say it is. Just a great ride.
  11. jdfog2

    jdfog2 Been here awhile

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    Wowsa ! Guess I have a year or two of catch-up reading to do! Nice new ride !
  12. radianrider

    radianrider Adventurer wanna'be

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    Thanks, jdfog2!

    Good to hear from you again, been a while.
  13. jdfog2

    jdfog2 Been here awhile

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    Certainly Joel,

    Remain blessed friend.

    Jay
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  14. bbrz

    bbrz Been here awhile Supporter

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    Well, Joel. Four friends and I rode to Indiana this past Sunday and rode the back roads from Cayuga east and west of 41? East and West of Turkey Run, and Shades. Found the old county abandoned school house, and had a fantastic lunch in Marshall at under the Under the Arch. Next time, would you like to be in for a like adventure? For sure you have other tracks to show us. By the way, one in the group is a school teacher in Danville IL. Just asking!
  15. radianrider

    radianrider Adventurer wanna'be

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    Sounds like a great time! Still learning that part of the state too, but there is a lot of good riding. I just tend to wander around until I get lost, but that makes it tough to find things again. :)

    Happy to ride along!
  16. 72 Yamaha RD350

    72 Yamaha RD350 Been here awhile

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    @radianrider: I did it. Sold the Strom. Picked up a 2017 Road King with 319 miles on it. My wife can easily get on and off the passenger seat so that objective was satisfied. I have rider and passenger backrests to pick up tomorrow. Completely different riding experience. I'm surprised how well it handles if I adopt an aggressive riding position on the seat. Not a bike I ever dreamed of owning but if it enables my wife to ride more frequently then it is the right bike for now. I should be coming down to Indy a couple times this summer so I'll let you know a week or two in advance for a meet up. I'd love to do the Brown County hills while I'm there.

    Road King.jpg
  17. radianrider

    radianrider Adventurer wanna'be

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    Beautiful bike! Should make your planned long rides easier to handle.

    For sure let me know when you head this way.
  18. radianrider

    radianrider Adventurer wanna'be

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    Thought these had been lost to antiquity, but found these while cleaning out a box in the attic.

    My first bike--paid the princely sum of $80.00 for it.
    [​IMG]

    A stormin' 125cc's of almost-never-running-right power!
    [​IMG]

    And the car I drove throughout high school. [​IMG]

    Apparently I came by my love of scramblers and convertibles early in life!
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  19. 72 Yamaha RD350

    72 Yamaha RD350 Been here awhile

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  20. 72 Yamaha RD350

    72 Yamaha RD350 Been here awhile

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    That's my RD350 and a 71 Olds 98 I drove during college. The RD was a helluva good bike if you could handle the buzziness. It was a good looking bike too.

    The Olds had a 455 V8 that could make that 19 foot long 2.5 ton iron freighter move... at the expense of very poor gas mileage. The front bench seat was almost as wide as the Grand Canyon. I pulled in the driveway one day with my girlfriend sitting next to me and my aunt exclaimed, "That car is so big it takes both of you to drive it!".

    Both pictures were taken in Avon at the house I grew up in. The house is still there in an unincorporated area off 10th St & 900E. Kind of sad - the kid who grew up across the street from me who was a year younger died unexpectedly last Saturday of a stroke in his sleep. 53 years old. Too young.