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Entry 22 // The Race...Day 2 of 4

Update by: Luke | February 27th, 2011

We woke at 6:30 and discovered that there were ever worse toilets in the compound than we had in our room.


The Men's The Woman'sThe door is short. It sags on the hinge and doesn't latch well.

My air filter was also very very dirty, so I pulled it off and washed it in a tub. I put some fancy airfilter oil on it that I brought over from America.
We are on the road by 8:00 a.m. A much better start than the day before. We are aiming for 600 miles today. We drive and drive and drive. It sprinkles on and off. A full rainbow, with a double that's hard to see. Absolutly beautiful.

At one point I look down and notice my regulator is just hanging from some wires. I pull over to check it out. The bracket holding my regulator cracked in half from vibrations. Luckily it starts to rain.I dig around in my bag of extra bolts and find one long enough to temperaly mount the regulator a hole in on the horn bracket. I cut up my tempary backpack to use as padding and help with vibrations.Back on the road. That didn't take too much time.

An hour or so later my bike dies. It's flashing a FI code on the insterment panel. 3 long 7 short. I doubt it's the fuel pump because when that went out, I never got any fault codes. Nick pulls out the tow strap and pulls me to the nearest town to start the trouble shooting. Sorry Timmer. If this is serious we arn't going to make it to you on time. You are going to climb Kilimanjaro on your own.Nick tows me to a hotel to get away from the locals flocking around making it impossible to work on your bike effectivly. I get my computer and open my bikes PDF manual. Get this. The owners manual does not list the fault codes. Hmm...How can I find out what the code means? I drive around town and find the two internet cafe's. One is closed, and the internet is down in the other. Ok...Now what? It's like 3:00 a.m. in America right now? Who could I call to look up the code on the internet? I need to find out the problem ASAP. It looks like meeting Timmer probably won't happen.

I use Nick's satalite phone to call John from Rally Raid. He answers. I tell him the code.
"Oh yeah, we got that code on 4 bikes last year during rally's"
" What happened to us was that one of the wires comes loose from the coil."

How lucky am I? How many people in the world have that code memorized?

I also mentioned that the regulator plate cracked earlier in the day. He told me to get me an address for him and he will send out two replacements immeditally. Talk about customer service.

If John is right, this $6 Sat call will be well worth it.

FYI, When you buy the Rally Raid tank kit, they send you a lamanated FI fault code sheet to glue underneath your seat. I have this sheet at home. I did not glue it to my seat and regret that.

By this time we are starving as we havn't really ate all day. Nick takes off to get some food while I start taking off the tank to get to my coil.

Sure enough, John was right. See the wire that broke?Of course I have spare connectors on me in my goodie bag.All fixedI get the bike put back together and she fires right up. Nick arrives with food and we mow heavy on some chicken and frys. We pack back up, just in time for the sun to go down. Time for some night riding.

This is a paved road. In certain sections there are monstrous pot holes and the road just turns to dirt.

It is a little predictable as the worst sections are in vallys and where it starts to get swampy. It's not 100% predictable as we see lots of this.after beeing on the road for about 20 minutes, My battery warning light turns on. Hmm...I know this bike has a weak alternator at only 280 watts. I am running 85 watts worth of H.I.D.s and am charging a camera battery in my Givi case, but I should still have plenty. I think about this for about 5 minutes then it hits me. I forgot to connect a ground wire when I repaired the Coil wire. I pull over and drop the tank again. (I'm getting fast at this.) Sure enough the ground wire is just hanging there.We film the process get the interview, put the bike back together and take the photo. This woman just watched the entire time. Oh, and I had to drop the skid plate because I dropped a washer down there.Now I just hope the bike will start up. I hit the button and it turns over once in slow motion, but doesn't start. dead battery. I hit the button again and some how it fires up. I don't stall it and we take off to cover more ground. Nick drives beside me and I drive with no headlights for the next 15 minutes to let the battery charge up faster. I modded my lights so I can run with no headlights. That also helps the bike start easier. If I had not done that, there is no way the bike would have started on it own. I would have needed a tow to start it.

We drive for another hour or so, by now we are really tired and it's just plain dangerous driving. 90% of the traffic is semi's trying to dodge the potholes, but not you. We got run off the road twice and said we need to call it a day. We stop at the only thing that seems to be open. Some sort of bar. A few guys are playing pool outside. I ask the guys if we can set up our tent in the parking lot for the night. They get an elderly man to come over. Turns out this older man drinking cane rum out of a plastic sandwhich bag if the town owner or king or whatever you call it. He has the nicest house and runs the village. He is very happy to talk to us and lets us pitch our tent in the safety of his yard for the night. We are just ready to sleep, but first he shows us the grounds. His outhouse, and then he brings out his 13 year old daughter for us to meet. She is clearly not as excited to see us as he is. Finally we set up the tent and get some sleep.

This is his daughter that I think he wanted us to marry. I took this picture in the morning before we left. Culture is definitally different here. It's common for girls to get married at 13 or 14 and have two kids by 17. Guys also have more than one wife, and can marry girls that are much much younger than theirself.In the middle of the night I get up to use the bathroom and see my bike has tipped over in the soft sand. Back inside the tent to grab the camera, then back to sleep. Today was an exhausting day again. I love this!We did not do our 600 miles for the day, but I think we got about 500. Not too bad for breaking down three times.

 

 

 

 

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