TAT on an XT250

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by AT Blizzard, Jun 28, 2017.

  1. AT Blizzard

    AT Blizzard Been here awhile Supporter

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    Rear wheel was equipped with a factory rimlock. I switched to a Motion Pro rimlock and replaced the original tube with the HD Tube (my middle of the road decision between the standard and UHD tubes).

    No rim lock on the front wheel.

    >80 mpg on the trail -- most of my trail time was between 16-45 mph.

    I rarely needed the aux gas can (holds ~1 gal), but I wouldn't want to be without it. I was in the habit of topping off my fuel when it was available -- a lot of small credit card charges as I went West... :-)
  2. AT Blizzard

    AT Blizzard Been here awhile Supporter

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    My Yamaha dealer advised me on the oil change schedule. Running that air cooled motor a lot of hours every day for a month -- it seemed reasonable.

    Every time I changed my oil and did a casual inspection of that oil as it drained -- I wondered if I should've changed it sooner.
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  3. tbird649

    tbird649 Been here awhile

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    I was told many years ago, by a man who knew about these things, oil is cheap, engines are expensive Having recently bought a Honda CRF230, similar animal to this Yamaha, I looked through the manual to find the oil capacity is a whole litre! So it would be silly of me not to change it often.
  4. AT Blizzard

    AT Blizzard Been here awhile Supporter

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    On my way to the casino-town of Winnemucca (from Grants Pass), I stopped at a Yamaha dealer for a new air filter and found this:

    IMG_1751.JPG

    Also on the way, I found out that I could not get gas at Denio (I already knew that), but I couldn't confirm that I could get gas at Fields, OR. That aux tank took the worry away as I made it to Winnemucca early this morning (~3 am).

    IMG_1756.JPG
    Moon rising above the hills as I did my roadside planning on the Oregon/Nevada border near Denio.
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  5. everready

    everready Stuck in Ohio....Ugh!!!

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    Great report. I like the way you pack. Very tidy and neat. I'm sure that also helps with reducing gas consumption and makes handling the bike easier on the trail.
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  6. NJ-Brett

    NJ-Brett Brett

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    Loved the report.
    I have a 2016 XT250 and love the bike.
    Small bikes are a lot more fun in the dirt.
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  7. Vic5491

    Vic5491 Been here awhile

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    Thanks. I just wondered why you changed it so often. Apparently it looked like it needed changing too!
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  8. Vic5491

    Vic5491 Been here awhile

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    Was the factory rim lock obviously inferior or what?

    80 mpg on the trail is GREAT! What do you get when you are running down the highway at 60-65?

    Was your Aux Gas can a Rotopax? It looks like is has a smaller footprint than a Rotopax and is thicker. It looks perfect for your size bike!
  9. CloudSplitter

    CloudSplitter Putterer

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    Howdy. Just found this RR. Hope you continue posting if you return to Utah using Kevin's tracks.

    Got to Utah in 2014, and am planning to finish on Kevin's tracks, maybe next year.

    For you others, planning to do the TAT, a local told me that they always clear and open the mountain passes in time for the 4th of July weekend.
    .
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  10. Shawnspeed

    Shawnspeed Been here awhile

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    Mr. Blizzard:

    Congratulations on a an awesome trip well done! Thank you for taking the time to chronicle the trip for us. A very enjoyable and useful set of details.

    How are you planning to get home?

    From your records, it looks like you left Trinidad, CO on June 25th (day 15 of the trip) and finished the journey on July 10th (day 30th of the trip) without any days off. According to my package from Sam, that is about 3,100 miles or an average of 207 miles a day. Does that sound about right to you? How many hours a day were you mobile?

    A while ago, I started a thread asking what inmates thought of a two stroke 250 as an adventure bike:

    http://advrider.com/index.php?threads/2-stroke-ktm-250-xcw-as-an-adventure-bike.1219451/

    The responses I got led me to believe there wasn't a lot of enthusiasm for such a project. The only thing I could find on the net about someone else trying the concept was this from back in 2013:

    http://www.ktmforums.com/forums/adventure/19890-2-stroke-adventure-bike.html

    Naturally now I'm dying to do a proof of concept project to see just how weird of an idea it is. The perfect place to test such a concept would be the Colorado - Pacific Ocean portion of the TAT. I can't take a whole month off work, so the idea is to do the TAT in two sections. The fun Western part on a two stroke later this summer and the other part on a Tiger 800 next spring.

    The major changes to the bike, aside from a bigger tank and gearing change is a custom rear rack and an adventure tower I came up with.

    The machining is finished and I'm in the final assembly phase of the tower.

    All the aluminum parts weigh 2.3 pounds. It holds a high power Baja design off road LED light and it's AC/DC converter, Garmin Montera, original KTM speedo, roll chart, temp gauge, power outlet for two USB, headlight switch and high/low beam switch.

    IMG_3652.JPG IMG_3665.JPG IMG_3676.JPG IMG_3671.JPG
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  11. AT Blizzard

    AT Blizzard Been here awhile Supporter

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    When I was prepping my wheels for this journey, I ordered Motion Pro rim tape, rim lock, combo levers, valve stem puller, Yamaha tire lube... along with the HD tubes and tires. That was the fun part!

    Then I spent several hours stripping down the wheels, cleaning, checking spokes, and mounting everything including the new T63 tires -- THAT was a workout.

    I estimate 60-65 mph gets me in the upper 60s to low 70s mpg.

    Aully-park, rated 3/4 gal (holds about 1 gal). It fits within my rack and helps stabilize my Wolfman top pack. I wanted to keep my gas can from taking hits from sticking out. It hasn't leaked.
  12. AT Blizzard

    AT Blizzard Been here awhile Supporter

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    I will ride away from the Winnemucca KOA tomorrow morning to intercept the gpsKevin TAT Tracks off I80, and run them to the Nevada/Utah Border where I passed through a couple weeks ago.

    That should complete my final loop of this journey.
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  13. AT Blizzard

    AT Blizzard Been here awhile Supporter

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    Reply to [Shawnspeed]:

    I will be riding back on tarmac to North Georgia, avoiding long stretches on Interstates. But first will visit friends and family West of the Rockies!

    My odometer had recorded 6,000 total miles (including my tire run up to Pueblo, CO). So yeah, about 200 miles per day average.

    >>>Most days when I started riding I had no idea where I was staying that night. I scouted the maps, familiarized myself with support and services, weather updates, etc -- and let the picture resolve itself throughout the day.

    I did make reservations for Trinidad, CO believing that I would be mounting BOTH of my new tires before climbing the Rockies. Then the US Post Office rejected my RMATV shipment -- and I had to travel to Pueblo (~90 miles in the slow lane of I-25) to mount my rear tire, then wait for my MT21 Pirelli till I got to Moab. I remained flexible throughout as I canceled my easy-day in Trinidad and spent another night in a tent on my return trip down I-25 to Trinidad. :-)

    I did make a reservation at the Wolf Creek Inn. That turned out OK.

    Today was my first adventure "day off" if you don't count the early AM run into Winnemucca.

    Reroutes were another factor that added time and sometimes miles -- I hate backtracking. I remained flexible and tried to keep a positive mental attitude -- just glad I didn't run a live mic during those frustrating times...

    I estimate that my motor ran at least 7 hours per day, some days a lot longer. It's such a mix of riding, along with maintenance on the trail (chain, engine, etc) that I hesitate to give a response.

    I think prepping two bikes is awesome, especially those bikes -- plus, you are fabricating parts!

    I enjoyed prepping the XT and then experiencing it perform.

    I look forward to your reports from the field!
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  14. AT Blizzard

    AT Blizzard Been here awhile Supporter

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    TRACKS.

    The last two days to Port Orford, I was led to a trail dead-end. I was led to a mill in Glendale -- where a friendly worker in the hard hat who spoke with me said, "I see 10 bikes like yours (adventure bikes) a week try to come through here." I was led to a locked yellow gate.

    I followed the Tracks backed up by the map. I found that Sam's Tracks were not as precise to the trail as gpsKevin's Tracks -- on my 395LM GPS.

    I appreciate the efforts of both Sam and gpsKevin. Their hard work provides the basic structure for traveling across the country.

    But, I didn't waste much time when I hit an obstacle to find solution. I've read others saying similar things.

    Unlike the AT, which is a more formal White Blaze path, the TAT is more of an explorers mode when you hit various obstacles. Ultimately, this was my Trans-Continental adventure.
  15. juno

    juno Long timer

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    Very good info. I reached the same conclusion on the TAT sections I have ridden. I also have a 395LM but I have only been through to MOAB on the AT, which I will restart in the next few days from SFL. I am leery of the reroutes everyone mentions up through Oregon. How well did City Navigator 2017 show alternate roads? Do you have more specific info on the locations of the reroutes?

    I love the ability of the garmin to instantly tell you where to find gas, food, lodging when out of cell range. To me, those features, the glare resistance, glove friendly touch screen, durability and free lifetime maps make it a winner.


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  16. AT Blizzard

    AT Blizzard Been here awhile Supporter

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    [Reply to juno]

    When I drill-down into the map on my gps, it starts to reveal the lesser roads; and from there I start to see how they connect. Sometimes those roads/trails don't cross ridge lines or turn and diverge from any reasonable reconnect tie-in to the TAT. I back that up with Sam's maps.

    I don't have specific locations or routes. As for the mill, it is on one edge of town, so there are town roads to go around it.

    The yellow industrial government-looking gate with the narrow footpath on a berm next to a hill (like they were specifically trying to keep everything but a skinny hiker from getting around it) was a backtrack work-around.

    I'm not one to lecture anyone else on ignoring signs, getting around gates, bushwacking, etc. On this adventure -- I did my best to choose my battles. I "inspected" that yellow gate then left it alone. I could've slid my bike underneath -- but with all the logging activity, government trail focus (repair, maintenance, preservation, signage, etc)...

    ===

    I totally agree with your 395LM comments!
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  17. CloudSplitter

    CloudSplitter Putterer

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    I also got pretty mad at times, with Sam's tracks. I didn't get his maps, but the tracks were significantly more expensive in 2014 than today, and I had corresponded with Sam regarding how well his tracks were updated. First it took half a day to find a way around a bridge that had clearly been washed out months before, then a couple of misdirected routes that could NEVER have been possible, then his tracks tried to route me around the first fuel available after Oark AR (a point where most bikes would really NEED fuel). I can only conclude that these latter "errors" were intentional, perhaps to make you tell others to also buy his maps, and perhaps the never-possible routes were to enable him to prove somebody stole his tracks, since you couldn't ride there.

    Anyway, I predict you'll find Kevin's tracks, not only more accurate, but more reliable. He updates them in the winter, based on feedback by the riders. Then again, there could be challenges that would explain why Sam re-routed to the north.

    Enjoy that final leg.
    .
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  18. AT Blizzard

    AT Blizzard Been here awhile Supporter

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    Leave Winnemucca? Not so fast...

    IMG_1762.JPG
    Cleaning and inspecting my countersprocket (after removing the cover) revealed the shark fins.

    So, down to the Yamaha dealer in town -- where they mounted my OEM 15T sprocket that I had in my kit. I'll get another 16T CS, along with a new chain and rear sprocket when I return home.
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  19. DiggerD

    DiggerD DougFir from SuperDuke Days

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    Got a quick little side track for ya...after looking at that sprocket.
    So in 1996 I bought a brand new XR400 and set it up for dirt and DS rides with 2 sets of wheels.
    It came with a warranty, and I bought two more years of extended coverage and rode the heck out of it.
    To give an idea how much I rode it, I wore a hole thru the frame with the side of my boot.
    So back to the main meat of the story, I was woods riding and was loosing forward momentum when rolling on the gas.
    Crap! Transmission is going south! No worry...got the coverage of the warranty.
    So I take it down my Honda shop where I bought it and had them watch as I made circles in the parking lot until I made the drive slip.
    Well, made it slip alright and knew what it was right then.
    No teeth left on the front sprocket....none..

    :fpalm
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  20. CloudSplitter

    CloudSplitter Putterer

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    Oooooohhhh, you were so smart to carry that spare sprocket.

    Had that happen this spring. Started slipping while doing single-track about a hundred miles from home, but only slipped when starting up at low speed, so it got me home.

    You say you plan to add a new chain and sprocket, when you get home, but I now advise against that.

    Being a retired design engineer, and having designed chain drive systems for long life (just follow the formulas), I previously advised inmates to replace all three at once, since one worn item will affect the others, and I followed that advice, myself. Since then, however, while trying to find a counter-shaft sprocket that was through-hardened, because case hardening is obviously not adequate for something that wears through the case so quickly, I came across advice that I plan to follow, henceforth. The chain and rear sprocket can last as long as TWO counter-shaft sprockets, so enjoy the extra life.

    Lesson Number 2: I decided to try a non-O-ring chain, and really oil it frequently. Second BAD idea. That chain is "stretching" like mad, and probably adding extra wear to the sprockets. I now have a new X-ring chain, and will install that "real soon, now". Also have a new counter-shaft sprocket, in case that "old" new one is already worn significantly. Whichever I don't use will go in the tank bag.

    Results of my search for a through-hardened counter-shaft sprocket: they make them for serious race bikes, but the best I could find was that somebody, not the maker, said that JT Sprockets are induction hardened, which COULD be done in a way to harden all the way through.
    .
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