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Your Sport Touring Motorbike Fix

May 9, 2024TranscriptCommentShare

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Breaks & Brakes

Brian and Robin plan gas stops for 777, field three listener questions and compare notes on trail braking. Music by Otis McDonald. Download our feed here.

Transcript

As legible as we are intelligible ...

Brian: You, you mentioned, uh, working on seven, seven, seven, and I'm not sure what needs to be worked on. So I'm sure you'll tell me.

Robin: You'll see a big void of markers where the first half of the tour is covered in markers and the last two days are covered in, Oh, that's where we're sleeping, where are we getting fuel? Where are we getting food? Are there things that, uh, opportune breaks, things like that. Uh, so for two days, we need to figure out some specifics. I think what will work best for me, your assistance with. Having Google maps open and me having ride with GPS open. I know how to type addresses in there pretty quick and make stuff like that work. But first, are you ready to get into some opening banter, corrections, website updates? Sure. In addition to what I thought was an excellent episode last time, a couple of things I did not bring up, and I'll probably do this over the course of multiple episodes, remembering something I wanted to tell you about, about the Cali trip or the iron butt, or something I remembered about what we did in New Mexico. I'll just have to put them at the beginning of episodes ago, but I do remember that during my Cali trip at the very bottom of devil's highway, my ODO read nine, nine triple six just before takeoff.

Everyone: Nice.

Robin: I feel that's kind of fitting. Now. I also got shots of nine, nine, nine, nine, nine, one mile before the 100 K mark. Of course, duh. Yes. I got the 100, 000 mile mark. It's a 2016 model. I had 500 miles on it, but in 2018, and now it's got A hundred K on it and I also got 100,001 Quick site update. Got the RSS feed working nicely again, I gave it the BB system. Look, I just really, I remember those days in the mid to late nineties where I had a 2,400 BOD modem and I was like, I'm gonna check out what's going with the local record store and what. Make this screeching sound that lasted for about 15 minutes before it finally got a connection synced up.

Everyone: Oh, yeah.

Robin: Downloaded all of the BBS and then disconnected promptly because there's no way we'll ever be able to handle such constant connectivity so I can look up which new records they had in the vintage record store on the OSU campus. So I tried to give the RSS feed that kind of like pictures and text and links. And that's about it. So immediate spike in traffic plus sales because of that nice podcast and articles were lumped together into one RSS. I didn't think that was a good idea. So I made them separate. So if you go to tr. bike forward slash feed and subscribe to that in your feed reader. You'll get all of our articles, T R O dash articles. And if you simply take that URL, add a query string to the end of it, question mark, P O D equals one, as in pod equals one, that will subscribe you to our podcast feed. So two separate feeds. Those are the updates that I got. You got anything, Brian?

Brian: Personal updates. Uh, I got the sighting done on my house so I can ride again. Freedom! I'm going to paint my ass blue and receive freedom. Yeah, I, I lost count, but we started in January and basically sacrificed, uh, about 10 or 12 weekends to this, uh, this unending project. But it's finally over. There's a little bit of painting to do, but I'm going to do that later when I damn well feel like it. It's your world now. That's right. As I mentioned earlier, we got, uh, Fiber internet installed this just this morning. Um, I'm the first in the neighborhood. I'm the early adopter. I'm number one on the list. The guy showed up promptly on time. Uh, like he walked miles and muttered and he was jumping fences and, you know, they, they ran the fiber infrastructure, but they didn't really tell the techs where to hook into it. And so he had to figure all that out.

Robin: Yeah. I remember the cable companies in Chicago used to be vicious about that. Like you would ask for a new cable service. They wouldn't look for old outlets. They would take out that freaking four foot drill and just auger a hole into your brick wall and slap some cable in there, putty it up and be like, there you go, here's your bill.

Brian: Yeah. He turned it on and it's just, it's just crazy, stupid, fast. Um, beautiful, pretty inexpensive. And, uh, I predict we're going to have a very happy life here now. So much as I like riding motorcycles, I also like, uh, uh, Having nice, fast interwebs at home when I can't be riding motorcycles.

Robin: Efficiency. Nothing will make me smile more than efficiency. That truth has gotten me into trouble as of late, but whatever.

Brian: Yeah. And I saw it like on the way home, I went to the office and back and I went on the way home, I was behind a car and it had like a small one, those little small Gremlin dogs in it, you know, the ones that look like half alien parking cat. And the dog like spotted me on the motorcycle behind him and went absolutely batshit was. Was little, there were literally pieces of the car flying around and it was the most hilarious thing I've ever seen. So every time we pull up to a new stoplight or stop sign, it was in town, this little dog would absolutely be going nuts and the owner is ignoring it. I just love it. I'm like, this dog is ripping the hell out of your car. Why? Anyway, there's a backstory. They're stupid little thing, but yeah, I love, are

Robin: you saying it was reacting to you?

Brian: Yeah. Oh yeah. You wanted to kill me.

Robin: Uh, expand on that by, you always pull up next to the driver of the car, knock on the window. And when they roll the window down, just, just say, Hey, I just want to tell you I had a really nice day. You know, say things like that. Hey, I just want to let you know, I don't think it's a really nice car. So they can really hear your conviction about your comments and how you feel about their, uh, uh, isn't it a beautiful day today, the weather's really nice. Completely keeps a dog calm, tons to cover. Are you ready to dive in? We've got three listener questions today.

Brian: Yeah.

Robin: What the heck happened? The season's beginning. Is what's happened. That's true. And I'm seeing sales. I'm seeing all kinds of things. We'll start though, with Map Tastes Like Mayhem, because I can't ignore it anymore. I'm going to go to ridewithgps. com, rwgps. com, which is my personal go to for all things map planning and Brian's favorite navigation app. Uh, yeah. Routes 777. We're going to look at full for 2024 and per the last episode, Brian, how do I share my screen on zoom? Uh, that would be

Brian: the, uh, share screen button. Found it. Oddly enough.

Robin: There we go.

Brian: Um, I believe we're talking about the bits between Middlesboro to Moorhead and then Moorhead to Madison. Correct?

Robin: That's correct. This is a first for the tour. It's the biggest chunk that we've changed. I want to lightly divide your claim to fame with the stuff that we changed in the North Carolina area, because I have a feeling that some of those roads, I had actually removed them in favor of something else only because of the depressed and dilapidated particle board housing that I, I think we're going to pass having looked at those curves again and remembering how much fun we had, what's the word I'm looking for. I hereby acknowledge your. Bringing them back to our attention and putting them back on the map.

Brian: Yeah. And, and if you're, if you're afraid of a paper shacks and you're in the wrong area, West Virginia, yeah. Kentucky. Yeah. All of it. Yeah.

Robin: The Kentucky stuff though. That's your signature work. That is Brian ringer all day. If you look at the full map, as I zoom out here, there's a pile of restrooms, gas stations, fork and knife eating, you know, you know, Uh, hazard warnings, concerns, photo stops, if need be, and lodging. You know, these markers are everywhere, but once we get to the new stuff, all that's marked is the lodging, because that's what we made an effort on. I like to run the first break. The listeners have heard this before. You know, it's, I like to do 30, 30, 30 minutes or 30 miles for the first break, because coffee, ask anyone why? And they'll tell you after that, we go for the 60, 60, 60 miles or 60 minutes. Depending. And that means I need to do a little bit of math here. It starts with what's the mileage count in Cumberland gap. We're at 1348. So 1348 plus 30. If I haven't mentioned it before, I'll mention it now. My dad, God rest his soul, was a professor of mathematics. He taught advanced theoretical mathematics and physics in Calcutta in the sixties. Those people are now in our country teaching us mathematics. Point, I still count my tip with my fingers. Okay. So 1378 is the mile mark for the first thing that puts us at MOLUS, Kentucky. Um, MOLUS, MOLUS, if I go to, so maps. google. com, the trick of the trade here is MOLUS KY, and then I want to look for a gas station. I think you're going to be. The next one's going to be in cold iron. We're looking for a wild cat truck stop in cold iron, Kentucky. Whenever editing a map in Rywood GPS for the love of God, unclick, whatever involves the terms add to route on the right hand side, switch that to control point, and in my case, it's going to be drop POI. And then I'm going to enter this address in the address box, the location box on the far right there. We're looking for. Cold Iron, Kentucky. Clickety click click. Lo and behold. Wildcat truck stop. It's right there. So this is our 30

Brian: 30 mark. It looks like it might exist. Which is not, not a given. Yeah, oh, does 119 turn into four lanes there?

Robin: It seems to, or that's where it arrives from. Okay, so I'm looking for the gas, there we go, gas station. And I'll name it gas. The description is gas. Save. We found our 30 30.

Brian: Yeah, it turns the four lanes, it turns the four lanes into town. So I was, I was a little worried there and like, whoa, whoa, wait a minute. So you see what I'm doing

Robin: now? I'm at 1380, 1380 plus 60, 1440. See, that's how good my math is. And that puts us in Wooten, which is fitting. So that's what we're looking for next. Basically, if you have a way along the route, you jump over to Google maps, type the name of that town into Google maps. Then once it zooms in on it. Search for a fuel stop. It will zoom out to the nearest. I see a marathon station by the hiding citizens branch and Wooten brands, the boy it is. That's promising copy and paste.

Brian: Yeah. And there's a dollar general, not far off. So around there somewhere, we'll be

Robin: question is, is there one that's along the roadway there along, uh, what road is that? 6 99 cut shit. All right. I love, I love Kentucky, man. Careful. Carefully. I don't see the gas station on the route, so yeah. We'll mark this one.

Brian: Okay. Oh yeah, yeah, you gotta go a little bit off the route.

Robin: Scrolling down, making this a gas. How far down can I scroll before scrolling back up? That works out pretty good. Gas station, I'm gonna name it once again, gas. And if you didn't know already, description gas.

Brian: That's two. But is there gas there? Hopefully,

Robin: yeah. So it's a tiny bit off the route. Okay. Just barely. I always zoom out about four miles while I'm riding along. So I can see four miles of the map. And then I've got two GPS systems going. So my actual standalone GPS is showing me anything I might need to know about the roads. Also, it has an emergency find me gas button. It'll take me to abandoned gas stations where we can then figure out who's going to tow the bike.

Brian: Yeah. It's really good at finding

Robin: those abandoned ones. Yeah. We'll do one day of gas stops and call it happy. Beautiful. 1444 plus 40 plus 60. 1504. So let's call it 1500

Brian: miles. Oh, man.

Robin: Yeah. Look at that. Brian Ringer special right there.

Brian: That's looking stupid. I love it.

Robin: That is a ramen noodle of riding right there.

Brian: Yeah. That's some demented stuff. Although you may need to head over to that little town over there to find gas. There's a Walmart.

Robin: Well, let's get weird with it because we wouldn't want to spoil the opportunity for Mr. GBW to end up talking to some hillbilly in the middle of Kentucky. So here's 1500 miles. What is the next town rounding up? I guess it would be Russo. When you see a volunteer fire department like this in the middle of what is this road? This is route SR 30 in Kentucky through Russo and Gage spelled G U A G E spelled Kentucky style. Let's have some fun here.

Brian: Russo, I'm going to get a big fat goose egg in Russo, Kentucky. And what about engage GUAGE anything there? Jackson looks like the nearest fuel. There's absolutely no, and there's, there's a bunch there. There's another marathon. If you, you know, somebody who's got a marathon card, where's the marathon at? Oh, it's past the Walmart.

Robin: Jiffy Mart there. Oh, yep. There it is. So there's our gas station for that. Drop it a POI, Brian. Let's, let's do a street view first. So Jackson, Kentucky. There's a rock. Yeah. There it is. We're looking good. There's our, there's our, uh, there's our gas stop right there.

Brian: How many miles are we up to from, from the start? It's coming up on 130 or something like that. Something like that. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. So is it lunchtime yet? I think it is. That makes a lot of sense actually. So I could put a food market right there too. Right? Yeah. I mean, there's, there's option. That's a big enough sit town. It's got, it's got options. Showtime pizza and tanning.

Robin: Oh, well, some things just make sense. You know what I mean?

Brian: So, yeah, I don't know if there's a, I don't know what time you'll be there or how long it'll be, but, uh, this first a hundred and something miles is going to go pretty quick. And then it gets really a little stupider from then on. Yeah, it is about halfway through the day, isn't it? Yeah,

Robin: by visual standards. Yes. But you're not wrong. It's like a lot of the time, what we do with these gas stops is they are a notification and an option depending on how we're feeling. It's like, let's assess here. Was that a lot of writing behind us? Do we need this? Or is everybody like, why, what the, then I'll just, you know, get a quick stare and off we go again into the next opportunity. Certainly. We know that this has food. We have a food option here. I'll do the very, at the very least. I'll drop. A P O I, make sure that it's known that, you know, this Taco Bell Hardee's there's the pizza and tanning place, which I'm sorry, I have to know. I have to understand. So that might happen. There's also the variety pizza house. So we've got options. I'll drop a food marker in the mix, though. It doesn't matter yet. Unlike the gas station, I'll name these markers food with a description that is food. There we go. Much, much, much

Brian: food, food, and then nutrition. No, no.

Robin: And we'll put, we'll put it in town just so that it's easy to isolate by comparison to the other stuff. Got it. Now we're back to the, it's called the 1500 mark. I'm pretty good at math. So I know that 1500 plus 60 is 1560. 1560 puts us in beautiful Sally Ayersville, Sally Ayersville, Sally Ayersville, Sally Ayersville. Oh, yeah. There's all kinds of stuff there. So I need the first gas station I see, or the, let's go with the first one that's out of town. Cause there we go. There's a BP right before the turn. It's almost as though you planned this again, which raises a question. I wanted to ask you this. Are these roads part of the crawl?

Brian: Not really. There may be some overlap.

Robin: Well, I mean, overlap is fine, but how much overlap? Very little. That's also a good thing. Cause I like the idea that it's going to be unique to this and that it's yours. It's your contribution to the Trip 7's tour. And that we still get to enjoy completely different roads for the crawl. That's going to be pretty neat. All right. So I got a gas station for that. That's at the 15, let's call it 1560, 1560. Why do we go here?

Brian: I don't know, Robin

Robin: and Matthew, I take a Rick and go to the middle of nothing and then do a U turn. So let's go ahead and remedy that right now. I'm going to, in RideWoodGPS, while editing the map, I found a small Uh, frayed hair of the route that doesn't go to anything we're supposed to see. The trick to getting rid of it is you select the control point controller. You go to a place before that frazzle, you click that. Then you go to a place just after that frazzle and you click that. Now you've tethered the section that you're editing so that nothing else gets damaged by your, your work. Then I can click on this frazzle here, move it over to a normal road. Now I've gotten rid of the frazzle. I can get rid of the control point altogether.

Brian: And throughout this whole thing, it really just makes your heart break that all the roads you have to skip, you can't ride them all. It's unreal. Yeah. This, this area is just

Robin: nuts. I love it. So we might have to develop a ridiculous Kentucky tour. Oh, maybe we just keep that to ourselves. 1560 plus 60 is 1620. That's it. We're, we're at the, we're in the homestretch fueling up at Logic.

Brian: And, and Moorhead. Yeah. From that last gas stop to Moorhead. How far, how far are we talking? Just over 60 miles.

Robin: Excellent. I like it. I'm looking, I'm zooming in on another location and seeing if I planned breakfast. Seems to me that no, that's good. We've got gas stations. We've got, uh, lodging. Well, that was already taken care of. Anyhow, we have a lunch stop. Thanks to you. And I think that lunch stop is perfectly adequate. If not, is there something in what appears to be the bustling metropolis of

Brian: Sellersville? Yeah. I mean, there's a, there's a McDonald's who'd like, yeah, cause what, what you're going to find in that town is not anything that's on Google. You're going to pass a place called grandma's cafe or something.

Robin: And it's going to be good.

Brian: Yeah. And you're going to stop.

Robin: It'll shave a couple of days off your life, but it's going to be good.

Brian: You say that like it's a bad thing,

Robin: right? Yeah. Wow. You know what? We're also missing everything, everything from Mount Airy down to Maggie Valley. So we're going to have to make a series of this. I'm going to go ahead and save this so we can move on to another segment and we'll do this. We will do this weekly until it's done.

Brian: We should get it done in time for the, uh, you know, for you to go on the actual tour there. Right in time to discover that none of these places exist anymore. Yeah, really? Yeah. Carry a little bottle of reserve gas. I don't know. Saving. Are you ready for some listener questions? I'm ready for some listener questions.

Robin: Lay it on me. What are people curious about? We're going to go with initials from here on out. So then it makes us sound like we have a more vast audience. JB asks, I have an R 1200 RT and I'm noticing the front brake lever has a lot of play at the bars. At the bars, level one is closest and four farthest. It has a little dial. I've got the same system on my bike. He's this person clearly has the same bike that's from the grip. Level one is closest and four is the farthest from the grip. Level one is useless and level four has more play than I'm comfortable with. I've bled the system using the standard procedure going top to bottom, you know, from the master cylinder to the caliper with a friend's assistance using a lot of brake fluid, but there's still like two inches, three inches of play. Another friend thinks I need a new master cylinder. What should I do?

Brian: Uh, one thing I'll bring up is that on a bike with an ABS system, you can get an air bubble trapped in the ABS system.

Robin: It has ABS for sure. I promise you.

Brian: Yeah. And I don't know what the process is on BMWs for purging that, but it can involve plugging in a special dealer tool and triggering it and so forth. The second thing I want to mention is he's talking about, he's talking about playing the lever. And what he's actually talking about is a little, the word isn't play. It is, um, travel. He's got some excess travel. So play would be at the levers, just rattling like the, like the pivots loose. Um, and excess travel, like it takes, you have to squeeze it a lot further than you should in order to get any braking mojo before you suspect the master cylinder is bad or anything like that. I'm pretty convinced it's got an air bubble in it. Now, I don't know what work happened on the system or why it would have an air bubble in it. That's a question. Did you put new brake lines on at some point? Did you do some, or did this just happen one day?

Robin: Right. And I happen to know this person. I know that they didn't replace any brake lines. They simply wanted to deal with the play that they detected.

Everyone: Okay.

Robin: And as a result, I think they put more air in the line there. There's already some travel. Okay. And now there's more well, or sort of was, right. So it might have a bubble in it. Yeah. And that's easy to remedy. Assuming you've cleaned everything up, scan every inch of the front brake system for leaks. If the master cylinder doesn't show signs of leaked fluid, you probably don't need a new master cylinder. Go through the motions again, this time using the reverse bleed method. So basically if you want to bleed this system, Brian hasn't had a lot of luck with this. I have, but the reverse bleed. Okay. Method. It's on the website. If you go to tro. bike and type reverse brake bleed into the search bar, it, the article will come up on how to do this, but basically you're, you're feeding fluid from what is designated as the exit point on the caliper all the way back up through the system, into the master cylinder, and it takes out a lot of sediment. Another thing you can do, pull your calipers off and absolutely drench them, every nook cranny surface with excess of brake parts cleaner, then reinstall. You could also get a sturdy piece of light duty rope or double sided Velcro or bungee, whatever you can find, and then squeeze the brake lever all the way to the bar, wrap that around the brake lever and just crush it against the throttle before tying it off. Leave that overnight so that it can draw air out of the system. Come back. You're going to feel probably some difference. It usually works.

Brian: Yeah, I'll, I'll add a couple of things. Uh, it is possible for master cylinders to fail internally. Uh, so you don't see a leak on the outside of it. Uh, it'll just, it'll just leak in between. Again, I do not think this is this guy's problem. This is a relatively new bike. And the other part, uh, where you mentioned drenching your calipers, if you have something hanging up in your calipers, the reason for that is if you have something in your calipers, uh, where the parts aren't sliding the way they should, you could, it'll take excess travel to. Push the pads out or push the pistons out a little more. And then when you let up on it, it kind of springs back to where it was. The idea there is to kind of help get rid of some of the dirt and so forth. You may need to like on the pins and so forth, you may need to look at those and make sure they're not notchy and make sure they're not, uh, rusty or anything like that. Again, new ish bike, it's probably not a problem. Uh, and as far as like leaving the brake system pressurized overnight. Part of what that helps do is dissolve the air in the system and, and it can help kind of float it to the top and so forth. A lot. Yeah, that's an old fashioned trick. Sometimes that can help. Sometimes it doesn't make a lot of difference. Sometimes you have to repeat it five or six times and it'll get all the air. The way to diagnose like, yeah, I've got an air bubble in this system is if you can just grab the lever really fast and pump it up, if it'll pump up, it's 99 percent going to be an air bubble. Because if you don't let it expand again and you just pump it really fast and it'll pump up and give you a good lever. You know, what you're doing is you're compressing that air bubble down to almost nothing. That's a good way to diagnose, yeah, I've got an air bubble somewhere in here. And again, going back to ABS, it may be something, I don't know anything about BMW ABS.

Robin: It does require a special digital dealer tool to activate a servo. That will do some work. However, I've never done that. I've never swatched out or completely flushed the ABS system. I ended up using, I've got speed bleeders. So I just connect a couple of hose, open everything up, go crazy and call it good. Cause I believe that brake fluid in the master cylinder is going to the ABS anyhow, so it just kind of filters itself out.

Brian: Yeah. It's one of those things like if somehow it gets a bubble in there, then, then that can be, uh, it can really get trapped because there's a lot of intricate passages inside there. There's a lot to think about here, but you can kind of just step through a lot of different things and, uh, eventually get there.

Robin: All right. So then the next one, are we ready? I'm ready. KB asks, assuming your trips are five to six hours on the bike each day, what's a good approach to building up riding endurance? They're thinking about Wisco Disco. Is the answer as simple as ride more? To which I'd reply, yeah, I get that. What else can I do? Or how should I ride more? Add an hour more with each weekend ride until a six hour ride with breaks doesn't leave me feeling exhausted the next day? Are there specific workouts, core, crunches, pushups, et cetera? The goal is to have enough endurance to enjoy not just the first day, but Friday and Saturday and the ride home on Sunday. This time I'll answer first. Don't overthink it. Don't overthink it. As you heard, while we were planning some of the stuff for trip sevens, we do a 30, 30 plan followed by a 60, 60 and zero demands or expectations. That's 30 minutes or 30 miles for the first break, 60, uh, 60 minutes, 60 miles for the next and on and on and on, ride your own ride, stay comfortable for the duration. There's no need to stress flex or make work of it, except for when you feel good about doing so. You're not there to be watched with deep analysis. You're there to be in the experience in your comfort zone. So. My advice is be comfortable with your decision making and your writing process. That's what I would say. Brian, I imagine you might have some drastic different comments to add to this, that I'm going to absorb.

Brian: A couple of things I will add on to your excellent advice, um, about keeping an attitude and just, and just keeping going 60 miles at a time. You know, I've done 150 miles in one sitting and you have to, you know, Don't do that. Stop every 60 miles or 60 minutes, whichever comes first. You know, sometimes 60 minutes is like 20 miles, especially on like a dual sport, right? It's also the only TV show that doesn't have any theme music. There you go. There are two things I would add to that. The first one is get some training. So you are more comfortable and get some experience in training so that you are more comfortable in more situations. The biggest reason that people fatigue is mental fatigue. It's not, it's not all physical. If you are stressed, if you're angry, if you're scared, and again, this was in one of my articles on TRO. This is, you know, harshing the mellow, the mood and so forth. If you're scared, if you feel like you're trying to keep up, well, don't do that. If you have negative emotions happening, uh, they'll feed on each other and you'll become extremely fatigued, mentally fatigued, and that's, you know, mental fatigue, if you can deal with that, then the rest of it is just staying on the bike and going back to the bike after you take a break. So it's not really a physical thing. So. That's one thing. Get training, get comfortable in different situations. And so that means get training, get experience. You'd almost call it ride reflectively. Like every time you go out, don't just ride around in circles, ride to learn something that day. You know, every time I go somewhere, I learn something. Sometimes it's useful. Sometimes it's useless crap, like a dog tearing up a car. Anyway, good call back. Yeah. Good call. T R O dot bike. T R O dot bike. Um, and the second thing is that I would add to that is don't be afraid to make adjustments. For example, like we came to a stop in New Mexico and we waited and we waited and we waited and we got a little worried and then, uh, Kelly showed up and he's like, oh, I took off a sweatshirt, you know, make adjustments for your own comfort, make adjustments in your clothing and don't and make adjustments in the bike. Uh, if you need to put the windshield up or down, if you have one,

Robin: there's no SPF up ahead of you. If you need, if you want to take a picture, stop and take a picture. If you want to take a leak, stop and take a leak. When you need to do something, do it. You don't need to explain yourself. It's something that we will respond to accordingly.

Brian: Ride your own ride is a great concept to people to understand, but that's how you do it is you do, you really do do your own thing. Don't worry about the group. If you need. If you're too hot and it's distracting, pull over, take off a sweatshirt, tuck it away and carry on. Uh, if your bladder is sending signals, then pull over and deal with the problem if you possibly can. And the other thing, you know, and adjust the bike, adjust your mirrors, adjust your windscreen. Uh, some people have seats that can go up and down. There's, you know, there's all kinds of things like that. Adjust, you know, make those adjustments to, to get it just right. You don't really have to do what I did on the New Mexico trip, which was go to Walmart, buy a, uh, bath mat and then make a butt pad out of it. Maybe you will. I don't know. It's one of my better life hacks because it really did work a lot better than I expected. And I was, plus it made for great, uh, pictures. Like what the hell is that on that bike? So yeah, basically get comfortable mentally, you know, and that means you're getting skills, getting comfortable in different situations, things like that. Slow down. You know, don't rush to the next stop, stuff like that. Get more comfortable and you'll eliminate the mental fatigue.

Robin: If you're happy while riding, you're going to be comfortable while riding.

Brian: Yeah. If you're, if you're happy, it's just, you'll arrive at the end of the day and like, yeah, my butt's a little sore, but I feel great. You know, you should not be physically beat at the end of the day. You should not be angry. You should not be upset. Third thing I'll add, and I know this is motorcycling 101, but it's surprising how many people don't know this. Wear earplugs. I'm, I'm always amazed. When I put in earplugs and people go, what are you doing?

Robin: It can also help hide some of

Brian: the maintenance that you might need to do, which

Robin: is nice.

Brian: Yeah. You don't, you don't have to hear your chain slapping around or something like that. But that's one thing I, I don't know why that's not more common knowledge, but yeah, put in earplugs and they're not a cone of silence, you know, you're going to be able to hear sirens. You're going to be able to hear your engine. One of the biggest factors in mental fatigue is noise until people discover, Oh yeah, I need to put earplugs in. You know, you can ride double the miles if you have earplugs in, plus you're not damaging your, your hearing. Yeah. That's what rock and roll is for. Damn it.

Robin: I'm going to bring up also in light of the training you mentioned, we've stressed it enough as a sport touring website, mostly paved cooking through corners on tarmac kind of writing that I personally like to do, but sport touring being the niche, the theme we've brought up several times taking The most simple advanced ready course. Yeah, go take an MSF ARC or maybe consider total control. I will mention there's something coming up this year. So June 7th through June 9th of 2024 in Waukesha County at the technical college in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, they're going to have the Wisconsin motorcycle training summit for 2024. I know that they plan on doing some work with what's called the RSL. We have some new curriculums out in the MSF world. One of them is called the RSL. It's a writer skills lab. Maggie is actually qualified to coach that. Really hoping to get my certification for that. The fun of it is that you get to hand pick what exercises we work on. So they can be from the ARC. They can be from the intermediate, just the basic writing skills version of the course. Yeah. We're allowed to hand pick and choose our own adventure in training. They're going to be having this in Wisconsin, June 7th through June 9th, Waukesha County Technical College in Pewaukee, Wisconsin. If you go to mozak. conerider. net, that's M O S A C. conerider. net. I highly recommend that people check this out. They're trying to get more signups, more interest, more growth as a rider, looking into this kind of thing. Some of the information I guarantee you will be very, DUH. Anytime you take something like this, it can putty over some holes and cracks and help you become a more complete rider in the beginning of your season. So again, that's mozac, M O S A C dot cone rider. net for the Wisconsin Motorcycle Training Summit, 2024, June 7th through June 9th, Waukesha County Technical College in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Next up for bid, we have our third question. GT asks, so it appears I'm picking up a 1996 Triumph Trophy 1200 tomorrow. It's a flip bike, but for 600 bucks and a sane history, this seems like a good idea. What should I know about the Triumph 1200s? The story on the bike, guy had kids, stopped riding about 10 years ago, comes with a few maintenance parts, turns over, has a title, and has all the plastics. He did the flip, the chain adjuster, and slipped the forks in the tree thing because he's my height. I guess the rider is a shorter person. At the same time, he also replaced the chain. It's got a leaky shaft seal and, well, it's been sitting for a decade. The carbs need to be done. Also, if this is someone's dream bike here, say something, I'll give you a first chance to reject it. I know for a fact this bike is already sold. I also know for a fact that it has not only, not only is it water cooled, it's also oil cooled. So if you Google images, go to Google images and look up the 1996 Triumph Trophy 1200. I saw this online and I think I actually pointed one of our friends at this bike so he could give some advice on it. He knew, he knew just enough to really say like, hey, great bike. If you can keep it together, here's some things to look for, whatever, blah, blah, blah. I don't have much of a response to this because my answer is I know nothing about Triumph. Mostly. I've suffered through working on Maggie Dean's bike, reluctantly, and I have gotten better at it as a result, but only with her bike. So that's a, that's an ejected modern bike. This we're talking about a carbureted dog of a tour.

Brian: Yeah. And this is the big, uh, you know, it looks like an alien spaceship sport tour, kind of like an FJ 1300.

Robin: The nineties balloon warbly

Brian: round. There are a couple of things overall, very robust bike. Uh, you know, it's, it's a big and heavy Kawasaki concourse type of. Larger. Larger, yeah, there you go. So there are a couple things I, I do know that if it has the hard luggage, that's almost a miracle. It's got the rear hard luggage usually, and sometimes it made it all these years. Sometimes it didn't. And so everything on it is, is extremely straightforward. Like if you're used to Japanese bikes, everything will be very familiar. If you're used to Kawasaki's, it'll be familiar. Uh, the one weak point that these do have the electrical system, the stator and all that stuff, the, you know, the charging system, I mean, and again, that's standard old motorcycle stuff. If you're contemplating this, I'm just kind of assuming you kind of know your way around, you know, you can clean old carbs. You can, you can test the stator and you know how that works. Um, I'm not going to go into that detail. The other thing is out of the box, the suspension was super, super soft. You know, whoever had it probably fixed that early on, but yeah, I mean, if you're willing to take a chance, uh, parts can be a challenge for one that old. I mean, it's almost 20 years old. It's that's a, that's 18 years, isn't it?

Robin: 2024 minus 1996. I like math 28 years, two years out of outside of the vintage range. Yeah.

Brian: Oh, God. Yeah. So, yeah, make sure your, make sure your eBay skills are tuned up and, uh, so forth. That's the other thing. But from what I understand, the carburetors and everything are pretty, pretty much the usual Makuni or G Keon or something, you know, one of those, whether you're going to be able to flip it and get your money back is an entirely different topic because you're going to get people, Oh my God, plastic covered 28 year old bike, you know, but there are people who really like these things. I mean, they. And they held up well, they rode a lot of, rode a lot of miles on them. So,

Robin: well, there you go. That's three questions. I think that might be a record for an episode for us. Let's keep those coming. If you want to email us, feel free to email podcast at TRO. bike or visit email. TRO. bike in your browser. And that'll take you to our contact page, uh, onto the next segment. We've got tiny tasty tool tips. Brian, you're going to be flying this ship from here on. I need to, I need to hear

Brian: something, Robin. One or two per episode. All right, uh, today's topic in tiny tasty tool tips is not tools. Uh, it is fuses, specifically the fuses on your motorcycle, your bike. The first one is, uh, carry a couple of fuses that fit your bike. Duh. Okay. There's only a couple of different types. They're available at any auto parts store. Go get you, go get you a few or a little tiny assortment. Second one is, Most fuse boxes have about two, have one or two spare fuses tucked in there. I would say not a lot of riders know that.

Robin: Well, they're confusing too. They, they, they don't make much sense. It's like, well, is that connected to something? No, those are just hanging there for years.

Brian: Yeah. Those are for later use. So you have options if they're, you have options if you're, if you're out there. Third point, uh, I don't know why, but radiator fan fuses, uh, fail a lot. Uh, Like if your bike's overheating and the fan's not running, for some reason the fuse maybe popped, replace the fuse, it's probably fine. I don't know. And I think it's, it's just like the highest draw load on, on the average bike is when the fan comes on and you're out stressing things, you're, you know, on a hot day and so forth. So a lot, a lot of times it's just the fan fuse. Fourth tip, if you can find an image or a PDF of your bike's wiring diagram, uh, stored on your phone or somewhere you can get to it without a. Cell phone connection. If you can find one or scan it or whatever, that can be really useful. And it's like with any tool, even if you don't know exactly what the hell to do with this thing, someone may come along who can make use of that information, or you may have someone in your group or whatever. So just kind of have, you know, figure out where that is. If someone does has put together a, for you, uh, a wiring diagram for your bike, or you can find it online, or you can scan it out of your, uh, service manual. Great. Last one is figure out where all your bike's fuse boxes and fuses are. Uh, obviously there's a fuse box under the seat on most bikes, but there's oftentimes there are extra ones. On my Yamaha there's, there's fuses under the seat, and then there's some that are up under the right fairing cheek. So you have to take off a fairing panel and there's a little fuse box there. So understand where those are before you, you know, when you get to know a new bike. You may never need it. And you know, you may never pop a fuse and it can happen. Or it may be like, Oh, I've been driving myself nuts looking for this fan fuse. It's up here under this panel, take off two fasteners. There we are. Those are my tiny, tasty tool tips.

Robin: Beautiful. Now my household is a climber and Haynes manual household. So we have whatever is available for whichever bikes we happen to have at any given time. It cracks me up that you were at, you're talking about having the PDF for like the diagrams, the electrical diagrams, where in our Haynes manual for Maggie's 2016 Triumph street to blah, the stripple gets, uh, an unorthodox amount of detail. Yeah. You open up the manual and it shows other bikes that have the exact same motor. There's like three bikes covered in this one manual. And they have the same engine, the same basic premise of whatever is connected to what. So the electrical diagrams are big, bold lines. Then you get to hers and everything immediately becomes microfiche tiny. Like just, you need a jeweler's loop to like, look at anything. In anecdotal fashion, I do think it'd be great to have the three of you who went on the New Mexico tour. Yes. Next week might be the perfect time. We'll still do map testing mayhem because I've got no choice. We got to get this map ready for sevens. And we got to get the map ready for Wisco disco, which according to the customers exists. It doesn't yet. They can, and it's gonna be easy to do. Oh, it will. Yeah, no problem. Onto segment three, which Brian has morally titled the stranger thoughts on riding another guy's bike. If you weren't drinking before the start of this episode, you better start now.

Brian: Yeah. We're going to learn about the stranger. So for the trip to New Mexico, I flew out to Albuquerque and I rented some guy's bike on twisted road. Went well, everything was great and all the logistics fit together and it worked great and all that stuff. But it was interesting because I'd never done it before. I had rented a motorcycle before, but I hadn't rented, you know, it's from a dealer, you know, I hadn't rented some guy's bike before and I've, I've ridden other people's bikes and it was a little odd just to give an example, you know, when I went to pick it up, the bike, you know, wasn't perfect and it also was not really suited to me. So there was sort of this quick scramble to You know, how much can I customize my experience?

Robin: Was there a mention in the title of the bike as if it were a feature? By the way, it's imperfect.

Brian: It wasn't in there. It was like, Oh, by the way, the tires are pressures really super low for extra, extra grip. What did you measure them at? So, yeah, when I picked up like the tire pressures were like 24 and 22 PSI, you know, that really low chain was rusty, stuff like that. And in your dual sport experience. What's a normal tire pressure for

Robin: dual sport riding

Brian: depends on a bigger bike on a, on a heavier bike. You, you pretty much leave them at street pressures, but okay. And track pressures are like 30,

Robin: 30.

Brian: Yeah,

Robin: that's you're getting way down there.

Brian: So it was getting way down, you know, especially, you know, I had a long highway trip to go right that day. So anyway, I adjusted the mirrors and then they started flopping around. So I had to tighten the mirrors up annoyances and I cranked up the preload in the rear. Now the suspension on this bike was actually pretty good. It handled well. I cranked up the preload in the rear to the max because it had my butt on it and it had a lot of luggage. I brought way too much crap. Checked the oil, that was good. Um, so one of the things, like I ended up, and I don't know if the guy's ever going to hear this, but sorry dude. When I got to your camper, I was, I was severely, like, I was almost bruised around the head because the windscreen buffeting was just horrible. So I ended up taking, it was a two piece windshield, it was a GV windshield, I ended up taking the whole thing off and stashing it. And then I, for the, for the return trip, I had it stashed, like I had it wrapped in a t shirt, and then I put it on like half a mile from the guy's house. Had some tools from Walmart, put it all back on and, and so forth. But yeah, you kind of wonder, is, is that okay? Would this guy be okay with this? I just, I just did it.

Robin: I think given the other things that you dealt with on the bike and no discredit to the service that offers this, it's going to be a situation where some people know, and some people don't know what needs to be furnished and configured and tuned before you hand this bike to a stranger on a fully insured environment. I want to say that, uh, for you to have gone through what you went through, I think that the reward of being able to turn a wrench on the windscreen and get rid of the buffeting. You can own that with confidence.

Brian: Yeah, yeah, it was fine. The thing I do wonder about is, okay, like, I know my way around all this stuff, you know, what if someone picked it up who was not an experienced writer, an experienced wrench? Yeah, it could have been, it could have been bad for that person, you know, and there were circumstances, you know, the, the basically the, the guy. Was called away by an emergency for a couple of weeks. So that, that explains the chain and the tires. I'll keep it. He wasn't there and the tires were pretty worn down and I, and I believe he meant to replace them, but he ran, you know, he had to, he had to go away for the emergency. It made it just fine. And I'll send you a picture. I've got a before and after picture of the tires on this bike, like a little bit of tread and nothing. And the other thing is I kind of alluded to this earlier. The seat wasn't comfortable and it also, I needed to be up a little bit more. I think I'm taller than the owner. So I ended up going, I ended up going to Walmart and one of the greatest improvisations I've ever done, because it works so well was I bought a foam bath mat. Hold on a teal. Blue foam bath mat. Yeah, the teal blue one was on sale for four bucks less than the black one. Yeah, it makes a better story too. So yeah, I got, I got a clearance bath mat. It's like that memory foam crap. Um, and it was kind of furry and stripey, which is really quite pleasant. Added two horsepowers. Yeah, I cut it in half, stacked the halves up, I trimmed it with scissors to sort of some semblance of shape, and then I got some twine and tied it onto the seat, and that worked shockingly well to make the seat more comfortable and to raise me up just a little bit. Permanent Every Bike Mod. Yeah, the, the, like the fur on the bath mat let me slide back and forth a lot better than I thought it would, but the bottom of the bath mat had like this rubbery stuff on it to keep it on the bathroom floor. So it kind of glued it to the seat, but I could slide around on top of it. I mean, it was amazing. It was great. Best thing I've ever done.

Robin: It's funny that, so I run our episodes through a filter after the fact, and we end up with a list of products we talk about that we recommend on the dedicated episode pages, first thing that. It came up was basically, I saw the, yeah, it was a butt pad.

Brian: Yeah. Yeah. I saw that when I went to listen to the episode and I tried to buy it. They're all gone back order. Now I wanted to, yeah, I wanted to buy that one for my, my old bike, my GS eight 50 Suzuki GS eight 50 anyway, going back to the stranger. So the part that was interesting was, like, I kind of had to think through, like, how, do I just ride this like my own, which is somewhat rapid, or, you know, do I hold back, or do I, do I show some respect for the rev limiters? You know, and honestly, like, I ride bikes hard, but I don't, you know, I'm not wearing them out. Like my bikes have pretty high mileage on them and yours do yours does too, you know, using, using the engine, using the RPMs, using the gearbox, you know, leaning hard, things like that. They don't, that's not what wears out bikes, you know, you're not really, you're not hurting anything. You know, it's within the bike's design limits.

Robin: I think you had a really good middle bowl of porridge there where you were like, do I ride the way I ride the absolutely? Yes. Do you respect the bike yet? Right. Ride the way you ride with respect for the machine. But on your technical terms, the way you like to do things, absolutely. Yes.

Brian: Yeah. And, and ride, you know, ride smooth, you know, which is normal. You know, that's how you ride. Like I, like, for example, you know, when I was not starting out, but when I was younger than I am now, I hammered the brakes quite a lot more than I do now. You know, like I use the brakes. I warped rotors, you know, things like that, you know, and hard street writing. I would. Really get the brakes hot and so forth. And I haven't like on this bike and for years on any bike I've ridden, I've not caught, I've not cooked the brakes. I've not caused any problems. They're not, you know, everything's nice and cool for a long time. You know, that's something I learned and got better at.

Robin: We all go through stages in our writing career. We get better. That's just, uh, if we're doing it right, we get better all the time. And I'm always learning the next day, how stupid I was the day before. All right. I think in the past several years, it's all been the terms. I trail break to a delayed apex. I trail break to a delayed apex. I'm going to trail break to a delay. It could be a soft 50 mile an hour sweeper. And I have to insist on what I need to, I need to tighten up my front rake angle for this corner and it's just not necessary all the time. Now, her hands, he's made a really great comment about. He doesn't want to have to break before that corner. He wants to ride through that corner and he can do it with great velocity, especially in a racetrack environment. He's got, he's got a great skillset. So trail break to a delayed apex. Yeah. He knows what the hell that is. Anybody who wants to sound more technical than they need to be knows what that is. You're going to bring in the brakes, tighten up your rake angle, turn in later than you would. So you get a better, bigger field of view. Uh huh. Chopping at the corner, which is a great safety technique, but is it always necessary? No, no, it's not. And so in the past year and a half, I heard him say like, I don't want to break before the corner. That just tells me there's learning to be done there that all of this isn't always necessary. So what you're talking about speaks to that. I like it.

Brian: Even at a pretty brisk pace, you know, you're, you're, if you're hammering on the brakes, it means you're screwing it up somehow. You're not setting your speeds correctly. And, and, and so, you know, like I didn't hammer on the brakes on this bike, for example, I wasn't like herky jerky up and down, working the suspension back and forth. You know, it was,

Robin: let me back up on you there. I will give it up for like. Travis Burleson, one of my regular sweep writers for sevens on his NC 700 X. He's got one rotor and was writing sevens and it's got no forward power. It, it's more of a dog than what you rented. It's got less horsepower than that machine that you were on. He got lost. We took a break. He just happened to come out of nowhere and caught up to us. Steps off the bike, goes and pours water on his brake system. And you just hear because it all got cooked up and it's just because cheap bike, one rotor. Big dude kind of thing.

Everyone: Yeah,

Robin: it'll happen. Lots of downhills. I feel good. You feel good. I feel good. Robin, you ready to shut this thing down? Let's shut it down.

The Gist

We've all been in the position where we get a portion of some major task done only to return and realize it's not finished. In the case of a sport touring getaway, we might want to know more about the route than the destination. For 777, that means fuel and lunch stops need to be itemized.

Onto listener questions! We'll bleed brakes on an R1200RT, calm riders who are reaching for bigger miles and visit concerns over the bounty of a barn fine. Game on.

Brian asks that riders everywhere take time to find out where their fuse boxes and spares are located. Most year/make/models have a few spare fuses holstered. Whether they're stashed behind some quirky afterthought of a solution or not, we all stand to benefit from at least knowing.

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