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post #1 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-28-2009, 01:43 AM Thread Starter
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Smile CA to FL

This is mostly a technical question but I thought it was general enough to post here.

I'm moving from CA to FL. Shipping all my stuff UPS and riding my Vulcan. Obviously this will be my longest ride. As such I thought I'd let anyone who's done such a ride chime in with any advice they might have.
I leave on the 31st and have no timeline. For safety reasons I made it clear to friends and family that this ride will take however long it takes and I will not set a day or time for my arrival. If/when I feel fatigued or the condition of the bike is questionable at any time I will stop and rest and/or handle the situation.


Brief maint done already..

I have replaced/lubed the splines a few months ago.
Tires are in good shape and aired up.
Oil's been changed.
Charging system's good (got a meter on the bars for monitoring).
MF battery and Iridium plugs have been working great.
K&N air filters as well.
Seafoamed the tank last week.
Clutch/throttle cables were replaced a couple years ago and have been kept lubed.
Carbs rebuilt/cleaned/synced early this year.


MPG has been consistent for the past months (43 City/49 Freeway).
The bike's been running excellent. If there is anything I ought to check before I go by all means throw out your suggestions.

Last edited by Bean; 08-28-2009 at 01:52 AM.
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post #2 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-28-2009, 03:27 AM
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maybe an on board volt meter , keep packed a good tool kit, tent maybe a lil cooker... a sleein bag on the back seat makes a good backrest and an extra helmet u never know when u will run into a hot hitchhiker.... keep the tires on the road and go ... if time is irelivent i recomend staying off the interstates where ever possible keepp the 2 wheels on the ground and ride im envious of your trek it will be fun

look for little knick knack places on random highways... ive pushed 1000 miles a day befor and it hurts, but u still wanna make time expect to double the time it would take in a car. (and thats pretty much a 15 min stop every tank of gas)
dont forget the camera, pack light and have fun !!!



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post #3 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-28-2009, 08:57 AM
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Sounds like you've gotten the bike into good traveling condition. Maybe pack a can of seafoam so you can throw in a little here and there. You never know what kind of shape the gas you'll be buying along the way is in. Sounds like a great trip. Keep alert and rest a lot. Have fun!

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post #4 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-28-2009, 09:51 AM
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Sorta my personal fettish, but I like in-line fuel filters to keep any crap in the tank from reaching the carbs. Relatively easy to install with the tank off, harder with it on.

I'm keepin' all the left over parts. I'm gonna use 'em to build another bike!
_____________________________________________
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1989 VN750 acquired December, 2008, 6,711 miles
Currently 23,298 miles

Old Blue
2001 Honda CMX250 Rebel acquired July, 2008

1987 VN750 project bike, acquired August, 2009, 33,000 miles and balancer sticking out of the case, currently awaiting attention and parts
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post #5 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-28-2009, 10:42 AM
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Sounds like you're taking care of all the critical mechanical issues.

I'm especially glad to hear you say that you will take as long as you need to in order to make the trip safely, because resting and staying alert is essential! To that end, I hope you have a good seat under your butt. If not, a properly inflated Airhawk seat cushion would be exceedingly helpful. (In fact, I even put one on top of my Corbin for long rides.) Second, walk around and stretch every time you fill up your gas tank. And, while endurance varies from person to person (and the weather/road conditions), I wouldn't ride more than 400 miles a day, max. I've done 500+ three times, but not as part of a long, continuous trip.

Oh yeah... good ear plugs are very helpful on a long ride! Reduces fatigue. I like these (with a cord to reduce the chance of losing them at stops) -- http://www.etymotic.com/ephp/er20.aspx.

Godspeed! And enjoy!

EZC


Last edited by EasyRector; 08-28-2009 at 06:33 PM.
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post #6 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-28-2009, 10:54 AM
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Ditto on the ear plugs. Even if your bike is relatively quiet (mine has no baffels, so it's loud) the wind noise really gets to you after a while, and the ear plugs help a huge amount with that. I just get cheap foam ones, use them a couple of times, then throw them away. I wear them anytime I'm going over 20 miles.


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post #7 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-28-2009, 10:58 AM
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Windshield?

I'm keepin' all the left over parts. I'm gonna use 'em to build another bike!
_____________________________________________
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1989 VN750 acquired December, 2008, 6,711 miles
Currently 23,298 miles

Old Blue
2001 Honda CMX250 Rebel acquired July, 2008

1987 VN750 project bike, acquired August, 2009, 33,000 miles and balancer sticking out of the case, currently awaiting attention and parts
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post #8 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-28-2009, 02:59 PM
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Spare gas tank.
GPS.
Paper maps, they don't run out of batteries.
Camelback.
Full gear + full face helmet.

Avoid the interstate, take twisty backroads instead.

The journey is the destination.

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Mustang seat
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MCCT
MF Battery
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post #9 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-28-2009, 04:19 PM
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If the bike is running great, you sound like you are good to go. Contrary to some suggestions, I would not alter anyting on the bike before you take a trip.

(other than checking the air in the tires and the shocks)


My only real question then is have you taken many long trips on the bike already?

If so, you should know what you need to do for your comfort. If not , you are kinda taking a chance here as to not knowing if there are any issues with comfort you might get surprised by. (like the seat )

It would be a good idea to let your folks/freinds/wife know what your route is, and it be good to check in with them once or twice a day to let them know where you are and if there are any changes in your route.

There are seveal threads on what to take on a long trip, and it really is up to you on "how prepared" you wish to be...and to avoid having this become another thread on what sheet to take, I'll just say take what you think you might need. I have gone hundreds of miles with nothing more than my cash and credit cards along with my cell phone.


A GPS is a handy item to have with you, even if you do not use it as your daily guide. If you get stuck somewhere in the middle of nowhere and do not really know exactly where you are to call for help, being able to give police or emergency services your exact location in lattitude/longitude can be extremely helpfull.

+1 on the earplugs.


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post #10 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-28-2009, 08:19 PM
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As you ride from west to east--be mindful of your fuel stops, and plan them ahead, carefully.

A VN750 in good condition, driven properly, can go maybe 175 miles (+/-) b4 you are walking. Depending on the route(s) you take, some fuel stops out west can easily be well past 150 miles apart. Don't let lack of planning with this spoil your trip--or worse.

One of the other participants on the forum carried a 2-gallon fuel container, on the rear rack, for just such possibilities...while she and her husband were out west.

Also: your bike may or may not be afflicted by this....but do a forum search here for the "phantom gas syndrome".....and know what to do if (or when) it happens.

If you don't already have one, pack a good tire repair kit (for tubeless tires)--and know how to use it, b4 you leave.

At this time of year, especially out west, your biggest "enemy" on this trip will be probably be dehydration. Know the symptoms of this...and/or when you stop for gas....get something cold to drink (and/or go with a "camel pak" or similar type dispenser you can drink from as you ride). Drink cold water or Gatorade-type products. Avoid anything with caffeine in it--this will only make things worse.

Otherwise, KM above is right. Other threads already exist on what you should take with you on a trip. Look them up here, using the same "search" feature above in the menus.

Take a good digital camera--and lots of pix during your trip...be sure to later share them with us!....

'05 VN750



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