June 24, 2011

  I'm sure most of you know, (that are following the "Spot Fink" as Charles calls it)  where we are.
    Yes we are stuck here in beautiful Bloomington. I had to replace the chain and have 99's spare tire (the 4th rear tire on this trip) mounted on the rear. That wasn't a problem as the dealer here is great to deal with. Only problem was that they didn't have an "O" ring chain nor a regular one long enough in that size.   I had to buy two regular chains and have them spliced. They will stretch some but the sprockets are already damaged so what the heck. Before someone mentions it - yes, we know about flipping the sprockets but the dealers mechanic advised against it under the circumstances as it may 'just cause more problems.   So long as they get 99 to Key West by Monday.  She is fine with this idea as she just wants to get going.
     99 seems to be aging fast for a year and two month old bike that only has two major, well three actually, oops I mean four rides on her. Turns out that the Dalton Highway ate a lot more things than just my chain and some other things. I now only have front brakes as I used only the rear on the Dalton due to the dirt and mud and snow conditions. Thus no rear break pads - well, little left on one side and  almost none on the other,  on the rear. (For those who are not motorcyclists - you NEVER use the front break on very slippery conditions.  On the other hand you almost don't need a rear brake on the pavement.  Most racers never use the rear ones).  That stuff on the Dalton just grinds everything it touches. And it touches EVERYTHING. Tried to switch (reverse) the pads but they are indexed. 
   Our big problem was with The Old Girl. She decided that dancing on the road was more fun than just rolling along.  For some reason Charles doesn't appreciate the dance so we investigated. Turns out the major problem is a wheel bearing on The Old Girl. Could not find one anywhere but the Car Quest people are having one sent overnight and it will be in by 7:30 am tomorrow.

The Old Girl during surgery  we had to put it back together for today and we'll have to do this again tomorrow. (sigh)
We will install it in the lot and be on our way hopefully by about 8:30 or so. Plan to still make south of Atlanta tomorrow. Since we are two days ahead of our planned schedule this is not a real problem. Just frustrating at this point in the ride.
   Lynn, guess what they have at the Honda Dealer, one owner and in pristine shape - and cheap.

Yes...It's a GS450A.  My all time favorite around town bike.  1983 - just like the other 3 at home.  But this one is in better shape.  Wonder if they'd take two for one?  No, No don't slap, just kidding, just kidding.  Well......................sort of!
    Once more Charles' friend Kenny traced down our hotel and telephoned.  I answered it with "Hi Kenny" and sure enough it was him for the latest updates.  Shortly after the phone rang again and I thought - now what does he want? But I was wrong.  A strange voice with a southern accent said his name was Ron S. and he has been following us ever since I gave him a card at the UPS depot here in Bloomington on the way up.  Remember Lynn sent me a new throttle lock here?  Well this guy is quite keen on talking and hearing all the BS we can dish out so we agreed to meet at his favourite Pizza place tonight and he's to buy us dinner.  He also found us via the Spot Fink.  How weird is this??  This trip is sure getting more interest than we ever planned.  I've been getting emails from all over the world (farthest being New Zealand) from people neither of us have ever met.  Guess we better be on our best behaviour. 
  Hopefully the weather will be as nice tomorrow as it was today (tail wind) and we can make the south side of Atlanta by tomorrow evening.  Our friend from the IBA Jeff W. is going to try to meet up with us on his BMW and give us an escort through his home town of Atlanta.  That should be fun.  Haven't seen him since he met us at the Barber Museum last year for the induction of the Barbie Bike From Hell.  If anyone wants to see a good write up about that ride see Karl van Kesterin's blog at: http://carlstwowheeledadventures.blogspot.com/2011_02_01_archive.html  He rode with us on the little 49cc Honda from Toledo to Birmingham during an attempt at a Bun Burner 1500 miler.  Good read.
  Gotta go now for our free pizza

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