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Author Topic: 3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650  (Read 4635 times)

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Offline Sardine

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3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650
« on: February 25, 2015, 09:55:28 am »
Scroll down for report and peekcha's!
« Last Edit: February 25, 2015, 03:27:46 pm by Sardine »
 

Offline subie

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Re: 3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650
« Reply #1 on: February 25, 2015, 09:56:47 am »
 :thumleft:
Het nogal aan jou gedink en wonder hoe vorder julle  :ricky:
As time washes by, our footprints are all for naught
 

Offline zetman

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Re: 3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650
« Reply #2 on: February 25, 2015, 10:04:59 am »
 :biggrin: Jou gat seker bles nou  :ricky:
Hou die Tyres op die Grondpad...
 

Offline DUSTRIDERS

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Re: 3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650
« Reply #3 on: February 25, 2015, 10:07:57 am »
Is the bike OK?!!!!!
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Offline Lem

Re: 3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650
« Reply #4 on: February 25, 2015, 10:53:27 am »
 :sip:
Faith is not knowing what the future holds, it's knowing who holds the future
 

Offline Heimer

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Re: 3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650
« Reply #5 on: February 25, 2015, 11:05:30 am »
 :happy1:

Matriek getuigskrif 1979: ........... is 'n vriendelike seun met volop selfvertroue. Hy tree soms vreemd op. Die skool se beste wense vergesel hom.
 

Offline Kerritz

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Re: 3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650
« Reply #6 on: February 25, 2015, 11:29:26 am »
Gannitlankvat?  ;D
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Offline subie

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Re: 3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650
« Reply #7 on: February 25, 2015, 12:10:01 pm »
Gannitlankvat?  ;D


 :laughing4:

Ja ! Maak n draffie met die RR  :imaposer:
As time washes by, our footprints are all for naught
 

Offline Sardine

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Re: 3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650
« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2015, 12:31:55 pm »
Just trying to find an easier way to insert the images inbetween the text, without having to upload to a hosting site first.  :eek7: I don't think I can.

Offline Heimer

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Re: 3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650
« Reply #9 on: February 25, 2015, 12:34:45 pm »
Just trying to find an easier way to insert the images inbetween the text, without having to upload to a hosting site first.  :eek7: I don't think I can.

You cant - it has to be into a hosting site for images in-line with text

Matriek getuigskrif 1979: ........... is 'n vriendelike seun met volop selfvertroue. Hy tree soms vreemd op. Die skool se beste wense vergesel hom.
 

Offline Sardine

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Re: 3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650
« Reply #10 on: February 25, 2015, 12:45:16 pm »
Just trying to find an easier way to insert the images inbetween the text, without having to upload to a hosting site first.  :eek7: I don't think I can.

You cant - it has to be into a hosting site for images in-line with text

I better find that Photobucket password then  :sip:

Offline Oupa Foe-rie

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Re: 3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650
« Reply #11 on: February 25, 2015, 12:49:32 pm »
 :sip:
Yamaha XT1200Z ........... Take your soul everywhere and back
 

Offline Copius

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Re: 3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650
« Reply #12 on: February 25, 2015, 01:04:35 pm »
 :sip:
 

Offline MegaPix

Re: 3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650
« Reply #13 on: February 25, 2015, 01:12:02 pm »
Ek sit met 3G probleem met my Photobucket se upload.

Ek ry saam
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Offline silvrav

Re: 3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650
« Reply #14 on: February 25, 2015, 01:54:07 pm »
 :3some:
 

Offline Bens

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Re: 3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650
« Reply #15 on: February 25, 2015, 02:26:48 pm »
 :happy1:
 

Offline Sardine

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Re: 3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650
« Reply #16 on: February 25, 2015, 02:35:30 pm »
-   The Introduction
-   The Planning
-   The Bike
-   The Ride


The Introduction

Last year I made a big move: I was going to spread my wings, and take on the world by myself. So I resigned, got a new job, new house, and moved to a new country. I had adopted a go-getter attitude, and I think it was because I was starting to realise and appreciate just how short life is.

I always used to wait for that “perfect moment” before doing things, and I have come to realise that there is no such thing. All that money I had been working hard for and saving up for a ‘rainy day’ was just sitting there. And it dawned on me that if I get the opportunity to do something cool, I’m going to do it now! Why wait?

You only live once, so why not.

I think it was about a year ago when I started to think about doing a long distance bike trip. I mean, up until now I had done quite a lot of long distance trips:
-   I flew an aircraft from JHB to Cape Town, solo (cruising at a whole 85mph. It took me 3 days and 14 hours’ worth of flying)
-   I then drove from JHB to Maun, with a friend, over the course of one day
-   One month later I drove from Maun to JHB, solo, over the course of one day
-   One week later I drove from JHB to CT, solo, over the course of one day
-   October 2014, I drove from CT to PE, then PE to Ballito, then Ballito to JHB, then JHB to Maun, solo, over the course of about a week
See the trend? I was no stranger to many hours spent on the road (or in the air). But I had yet to do a long-distance trip on a motorbike.

The Planning

In January, after about 4 months in Botswana, there was an opportunity for me to take some leave. I originally planned to spend it in Botswana, with my mother. But a colleague was also taking leave, and driving to JHB, and I thought ‘Hang on...’
I could drive to JHB, catch a flight to CT, spend some time at home, and then ride the bike back.
Yes, genius plan!

Now all I had to do was decide on a route, find someone to ride back with me, find places to stay, kit the bike out, buy gear, and rob a bank!

Route-wise, I ruled out going via JHB from the start: I had driven the N1, and I didn’t want to do it again. And I am scared of JHB traffic.
Two other options were via Upington or Kimberly, and then on to Gaborone.
A colleague looked at this and said that petrol stations were far and few between, and I would be better off going via Namibia.
I had only ever been to Namibia once, and I’m not even sure if it counted, as it was Oranjemund, which is right on the border.
Done! Via Namibia it is!

I drew up a list of stuff I had to pack from Botswana, a list of stuff to buy in SA, and a list of stuff to do on the bike.

Dodgygloss volunteered to ride up with me, but only for the first day.
Originally I said that if I can’t find anyone to do the whole trip with me, I wouldn’t go. But, you only live once! I would just have to be prepared for all possible scenarios, and take it easy.

Leg 1 - Sunningdale to Vioolsdrift   663km   05:00 - 16:00
               
Piketberg               
Clanwilliam               
Vredendal               
Bitterfontein               
Springbok               
Vioolsdrift               


Leg 2 - Vioolsdrift to Windhoek   800km   07:00 - 17:00
               
Grunau   144            
Keetmanshoop   163            
Tses   83            
Asab   52   **No petrol @ Asab      
Mariental   100      * Ziggy has family here
Rehoboth   179            
Windhoek   90            
               
               
Leg 3 - Windhoek to Maun   809km   07:00 - 18:30
               
Gobabis   204            
Trans-Kalahari Border Post   112            
Charles Hill   11            
Ghanzi   215            
Maun   287   294?         
« Last Edit: March 08, 2015, 11:24:57 am by Sardine »
 

Offline Sardine

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Re: 3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650
« Reply #17 on: February 25, 2015, 02:50:42 pm »
The Bike

My steed is the noble Suzuki DR650. I bought it around January 2014, with 40-something-thousand km on it. It came with a topbox, and a Garmin GPS mount (which I used as a GoPro mount).
While still in Botswana, I asked Dux to start prepping the bike for me.
He made a cool carrier with a built-in toolbox, and some pannier-bar-bag-thing-a-ma-jigs. And we made a new windscreen (my DIY one went flying a week before on a ride to Robertson).
The bike also had a service in preparation for the looong ride.








^Template for a new windscreen


^LOTS of silicon and double-sided tape to fit the screen


^The end product

I managed to source some Oxford soft luggage (from a fellow WD), and a Honda magnetic tankbag (bought for a steal off of Gumtree). I considered buying a long-range fuel tank, but Dux had a better idea; two 5l containers in some bags that you can just throw over the seat (or tank, as seen below).





The toolkit comprised of:
Spanners, allen keys, screwdrivers, plug-spanner, pliers, tyre levers.
Spares included:
A spare tube for the front and rear, oil
Other stuff:
Tie wraps, duct tape, insulation tape, rags, all-purpose lubricant, two cans of Puncture Fix, rope, bungees, straps, cargo net, air compressor, x2 5l bottles for extra fuel







And some more stuff:
First Aid Kit, Deep Freeze, pain killers and Immodium, suncream, buff’s, headlamp, spare batteries, poncho, emergency blanket, black bags, sewing kit, lots of Rehydrate sachets, 2l camelback with water, 2x 750ml bottles of water, 3x bottles of Powerade, trail mix, peanuts, cereal bars, Enerjellies, wetwipes, waterless hand sanitiser, Vaseline, camera, flying stuff, chain and lock (bike’s steering lock was on the fritz), sleeping bag, tent, 5 t-shirts, 1 pair of shorts, 1 pair of long pants, shoes, plakkies, a raincoat, socks and undies, toilet paper.

Yip, I think that’s it. So, I had to fit all of that on the bike. Easier said than done. Getting on the bike once everything was loaded, took almost as long as loading everything. And it was difficult. I fell over. In my garage. Twice.


^Topbox, with a lot of stuff squished in!


^Fully loaded!
« Last Edit: March 08, 2015, 11:27:37 am by Sardine »
 

Offline Sardine

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Re: 3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650
« Reply #18 on: February 25, 2015, 02:54:40 pm »
The Ride

The date was set: Dodgygloss and I would leave on Friday, 20 February. We decided that I would stay at his house in Blouberg, as that would save me from having to get up an hour earlier to ride from Somerset West and meet up with him.

I had this grand scheme that I would do test-packs to get comfortable on the bike and see what worked. Suffice to say the last couple of days at home were chaos, and my test pack was midday Thursday, shortly before leaving home for Blouberg. I checked that everything was secure, hauled myself onto the bike, rode around the block, got home, parked. Extracted myself from the bike, and dropped it. Oops.


^One of the very quick test-packs

Riding it wasn’t easy. It was heavy and cumbersome, the fuel containers got in my way, and I had to anticipate braking well in advance. Mounting it was a case of swinging my left leg over the seat, and then throwing my body over. Dismounting was a case of sliding off to the left. And each time I caught the Airhawk and got my foot stuck.


^Original location of the extra fuel. Now try sitting like that with a big pair of SG10's on!

I said farewell to my family, and my dogs (leaving them is the hardest), and set off. Now, I don’t recommend doing your first ride on a fully-loaded bike, on the N1 in a pumping south-wester. I was all over the place, and had a few scooters over-take me. I started to have serious doubts about this trip, and my abilities. Was this a good idea? Can the bike handle it? Can I handle it? What happens if I drop it in the middle of nowhere (I did)? Have I bitten off more than I can chew?

I was almost ready to turn around, go home, and buy a plane ticket back to Maun.

But I pushed on, and weaved my way onwards, completely missing the turn off I had to take (the first of many missed turn-offs). When I eventually found Dodgygloss’s house, I tucked the bike in for the night, and we headed to Eden on the Bay for dinner.

My first time there, I decided to be a tourist (because technically I was), and take photo’s of the mountain. It was a beautiful sunset, and a fitting end to my holiday.
We chatted over pizza and a drink, and the nerves and the doubt was slowly replaced with excitement.





**

^Showing off my new goggles (good investment, I must say!)
« Last Edit: March 08, 2015, 11:28:41 am by Sardine »
 

Offline bud500

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Re: 3 Countries in 3 Days - 2000-and-something kay's on a DR650
« Reply #19 on: February 25, 2015, 02:59:47 pm »
 :eek7: :eek7:

Loaded much...
Live like someone left the gate open.