2013 im Rückblick

Die WordPress.com-Statistik-Elfen haben einen Jahresbericht 2013 für dieses Blog erstellt.

Hier ist ein Auszug:

Die Konzerthalle im Sydney Opernhaus fasst 2.700 Personen. Dieses Blog wurde in 2013 etwa 15.000 mal besucht. Wenn es ein Konzert im Sydney Opernhaus wäre, würde es etwa 6 ausverkaufte Aufführungen benötigen um so viele Besucher zu haben, wie dieses Blog.

Klicke hier um den vollständigen Bericht zu sehen.

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Second place in the Brit Butt Rally!

The positive side: I didn’t expect that, the small XBR left all the big bikes behind. It was a very challenging, but a beautiful ride. Great!
The tragic side: I was about to win the rally, but I decided the end the rally when I still had four hours left because I thought I had a carburettor problem and the XBR would not make it back. Wrong, it was just a bent fuel tubing of the aux tank. I didn’t visit the last bonus point worth a 1000 points. In the end, Rob Roalfe won by 200 points difference….
Detailed report will follow!

3D painting

A couple of days ago, the XBR looked like this:

Stripped!

Stripped!

What has happened??? Well, I had decided to start the painting of the fairing. At the same time I needed to change back the bike to a normal state to pass the road test. It is only due in June, but I want to continue to change the bike to ‚rally mode‘ and switching back later is too late. So I went to Germany today and passed the test without any problem. On the way back it was snowing! Chilly, chilly.

New All-day-long seat from Russell (right) compared to the normal XBR seat (left)

New All-day-long seat from Russell (right) compared to the normal XBR seat (left)

It was also a test ride with my new Russell seat that has arrived this morning from California. Wow! It not only looks big, it IS enormous. But what a comfort! I only rode 215km today, but this felt very, very comfy. I even didn’t get a comment about the Bol d’Or handlebars I had mounted replacing the original ones. My seating position is more upright and relaxed, not to speak of the new seat. Now I just need to put back the fairing and I’ll be in LD heaven 🙂 . Well, in the meantime I was painting the fairing: grinding, two layers of primer, one layer of black (all applied manually) and then one layer of sprayed black – and then the disaster happened – the freshly applied layer wrinkled within seconds!!! All the hours of work for nothing…I ground the wrinkles after drying, but I have a 3D painting now. Whatever, not everybody has such a unique fairing, ehem …The reason was most likely that the first black layer was not dry enough and/or the two paints were not compatible.

The prepared fairing....

The prepared fairing….

...after two layers of primer...

…after two layers of primer…

....after the first layer of black paint...still everything OK.........

….after the first layer of black paint…still everything OK………

...and after the last sprayed black layer! Buaaaa!

…and after the last sprayed black layer! Buaaaa!

What else? I had received the Krista LED light and mounted them. Unfortunately, I had not taken a picture, but I will post one later. The lights are amazing, night becomes day! This is some serious stuff.

I also tried to squeeze the Dispatch distribution box under the seat, but this is tricky despite the smaller battery. this will be one of the next challenges. I have also changed tyres and I have spare tyres for the next months. I have received the temporary insurance for the bike in June/July.

From now on, the serious preparation on the bike starts…

Only 130 days left

A lot of progress was made since my last post. Let’s start with the logistics. After careful judgement, I have booked the motorbike transport from Paris to Toronto and back. The main reason was that his is the only way to ship the motorbike back by air freight. In contrast to Canada, it is only possible to ship a bike by sea freight from the US. Be as it may. I didn’t want to wait weeks to get my bike back so I have to fly via Canada. I also will add a couple of holidays before the rally starts so I can arrive in a relaxed mood at Pittsburgh. I also got me an additional insurance and special medical coverage (Medjet) that is also required by the rally organisers. I have reserved all hotels at the start, the two checkpoints and the finish. So most of the logistics is on a good way.

What about the bike? I was very busy with upgrades. The fairing was mounted and with help from Heinz, the fixation was optimised. A first short test drive was quite OK. But this was not all.

Truck Lite LED head lamp 22W/43W

Truck Lite LED head lamp 22W/43W

The indicators were connected and the new LED head lamp was installed. The set up of the lamp is not yet perfect. The ‚original‘ Volkswagen Beetle lamp is a little bit larger than the 17“ lamp, so I had to use the original lens, i.e. I have another glass in front of the new lamp.

New LED head lamp (left) compared to classic H4 bulb (right). 22 W vs. 55W

New LED head lamp (left) compared to classic H4 bulb (right). 22 W vs. 55W

This doesn’t make sense, but it is only a temporary solution. Something to be optimised. The performance is OK, not overwhelming, but it saves me about 30W power which is about one fifth of the output of my alternator.I have also ordered the most powerful LED auxiliary lights that are on the market at the moment: a pair of Krista LED lights. 2 x 36W uptake at a light output equivalent to 360W halogen lights. They will serve as high beam flooters. The rear light/brake light was also replaced by a LED bulb.

Additional windshield deflector

Additional windshield deflector

I mounted a plexiglass deflector on top of the windshield, this should give me some extra wind protection. When I did my test rides at 5°C, I felt quite protected from the icy wind.

I have also connected the auxiliary tank that I used on my BMW during various rallies. I had prepared the mount 18 months ago, but never really used it before on the XBR. I also connected the little puke tank. The tank is connected via a quick disconnect. The system works perfectly and expands the fuel volume to about 36 – 37L (9.7 gallons) which should be enough for 550 – 650 km (340 – 400 mls) without stopping.

Cockpit at the moment. Very empty. It will be crammed with electrical farkles.

Cockpit at the moment. Very empty. It will be crammed with electronic farkles.

Another feature I purchased is a rallybook holder. I usually prepare a sheet with the bonus point instructions for the tank bag. This device can be controlled while driving. A little light in the interior makes it also useable at night.

This brings me to the topic that kept me thinking last week. I want to connect many electronic devices in the cockpit, but how to connect all the cables to the battery? I was thinking of a simple distribution box but in the end I found the perfect solution: I ordered the Dispatch 1. Its distribution box can connect up to 10 electric devices and controls them individually via a display in the cockpit. Additionally I get the battery voltage and a temperature via a sensor on the cockpit display (I want to use the sensor to monitor the oil temperature).

I also practised route planning with some old data from the Iron Butt Rally 2009. I made some interesting conclusions. For example, I have to further improve my routing software tools.

Still a lot of preparation ahead. Sounds like fun.