Feelin’ like a Road-Trip

OK it’s getting near time to hit the road again, I’m getting jittery to start rolling and Baby Blue is nearly ready as well.

First up, I got her booked in for a slightly early 10,000 mile service. Now normally I like to service my bikes myself, but as Baby is still under warranty it’s only sensible to let the dealership do the work and stamp the service record. At the same time I had a new set of Dunlop tyres fitted; the old ones were in surprisingly good condition, but don’t like to push rubber right to the limit, so new ones it was. image

It’s a funny thing with new tyres on a motorbike, they always feel lovely and “round.”

Yes I know tyres are circular; wheels aren’t normally square unless you have a special set that won’t roll away downhill!

By round I mean that they are round in cross-section, a worn tyre “squares off” because most of the time you ride your bike upright and so naturally it wears the centre section of the tyre more than the outside. In time this means that you can actually feel a shoulder forming in the rubber, leaning the bike into corners becomes hard work and at worse a bit “interesting!” A new set are just roundly lovely and roll into bends beautifully.

The only downside with new tyres is that they need to be gently broken in, there is always have a slight residue of release agent on the surface which for about a hundred miles can make them a bit slippery and it’s also a good thing to get them bedded in on the wheel rim too; so it’s gently-gently to start with and 100 miles after leaving the dealership, I had a big stupid grin across my face!

The next job was to change the exhaust pipes for touring mode. Normally I ride Baby with a set of Vance and Hines Round Slash slip-on pipes, they sound lovely, but for long distance travel play hell with my tinnitus, even with ear plugs and a super quiet Schuberth helmet! So off came the V&H’s and on went the standard silencers, not as cool, but not as tiring either! It only takes about thirty minutes to make the swap, but I recon for long days in the saddle it’s well worth the hassle!

Standard muffler fitted, Vance and Hines on the ground.

Standard muffler fitted, Vance and Hines on the ground.

Ok, you got me now…..where am I going?

I’m going to sound a bit boring, but I fancy heading back to Italy again – can you actually be boring wanting to return to Italy???? Baby and I have some unfinished business in the mountains up near the Swiss border and I honestly have fallen quite in love with the country. So we’ll jump on a ferry next Friday, have a trundle across France; visit Switzerland, then drop into Italy and see what happens from then on!

If you fancy joining in for the trip, we’ll be happy to have you ride along with us!

“Get your motor running, out along the highway….”

Catch you soon.

Dookes

PS
As I type this post I find myself trying to make sense of another tragedy, this time in Orlando USA. The inhumanity we, as a human race, continue to demonstrate to our fellow beings never ceases to amaze me; what is so bloody difficult about respect and tolerance?
image
“Oh, when will they ever learn? Oh, when will they ever learn?”

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12 thoughts on “Feelin’ like a Road-Trip

  1. Ah, Italy. My ancestral homeland. Would love to join you on what surely will be a wonderful journey (what else could it be in Italy), but I’ll have to settle for your great trip reports. Ride safe and have a Valpolicella on me!

    I have no words about Orlando, other than sorrow. We are most definitely a flawed species, and the Cosmic makers must really be scratching their heads on this one……………..

  2. What a great trip. Hope you enjoy every mile. Sorry to learn about the tinnitus. Have you tried the made to measure earplugs. You can get them with connections for your iPod etc.

    • Thanks for the concern Bones. Yes I have custom plugs, but I’m afraid it’s too many years working with big diesel locomotives that have taken the toll!
      Oh and loud rock music!
      …and motorbikes!

  3. Have a great trip! I can’t wait to read your posts and see your photos. We’ll be going to Arkansas next month. Not quiet as interesting as Italy; but it is a beautiful in it’s own way.

  4. I, too, am heartbroken by the tragedy in Orlando. I just have no words. And a few days later a 2 year old boy was taken by an Alligator at a Disney World hotel lagoon in Florida. So heartbreaking. 😦

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