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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Long Ride Coming- T-Minus-11 days

Taking a trip across these great United States of America in a couple weeks, I`ve been researching fer a spell...
This is a good list to follow, Have you come across anything you would like to add to the list???
33 Secrets For Smart Touring

Thanks,
Dennis
 

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IMHO toss out the most of the first 11 "secrets". I keep a length of para cord in a saddlebag, along with the bungees and zip ties. I did most of my long distance rides before the advent of mobile electronics so I don't rely on them now. My last long trip (Reno to Alaska to Montana to Reno) the other guy had internet access on his phone so he kept up on conditions and had us rooms reserved ahead of time… and saved money. Internet pricess are almost always cheaper. That was nice. I recommend don't worry about over packing. Most of the crap people want to pack isn't really needed. Good hotels stock all the toiletries needed except razors and they generally have laundry facilities on site. An extra pair of jeans and a couple of pair of skivvies is all I ever bring. I end up picking up t-shirts along the way and end up mailing them home at the turn around point so no sense bringing along too much clothes. I roll my rain gear into the last roll of my bedroll so it's easy to get to. A can of fix-a-flat is in my saddle bag and generally there's a bottle of water rattling around somewhere... I hope I never have to open it! I can agree with the idea of staying at the far end of towns, but I have also found that the hotels near airports also have a better clientele and I worry less about the bike at night. Last, but as much or more important than anything else... make sure you and your riding partner are on the same page about the trip... distances to make... what kind of stops to make... etc. Your touring partner(s) can make or break a trip much faster than any mechanical difficulties! Enjoy.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I`ve about disregarded 31 things on the list... ;) LOL ;)
A rolled up sleeping bag inside my dufflebag makes fer longer interstate travel time, I tie it on soas to be my backrest...
The "Highway pegs" are another useful item, I have several different locations/positions fer the feet, it is good to get the change...
I`ve fabricated a "throttlebosslike" fixture with a very LARGE Ziptie, that I`ve beena trying out this past week, I`m gonna like the relief it gives...
I`ve added an extra set of saddlebags, I`ll throw over the mounted ones, soas NOT to hafta carry luggage...
Rolled clothing packs better than folded, I`ll be sure to turn my underwear inside out after two days, then discard after the forth day soas to stay fresh, and not have laundry to do until I get there too ~ One set will make the trip TO Sturgis thattaway...
Magnets to hold the interstate "routes plan" to the fuel tank, I`ll print it off in BIG letters so I don`t hafta pull out the road atlas/map...(This can cause a BIG distraction IF not folded correctly)
A water bottle inside my jacket filled with frozen water, with the three foot "straw" fastened to the collar will allow me to save time from stopping to rehydrate...
NOW I gotta fashion a way to get rid of the "used water" soas NOT to splash it onto the riders on the trip with me...
Thanks keep them coming,
Dennis
T-minus-11 days
 

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As far as the map thing goes, I always liked to stop and get off the bike to look at maps. Gives me a chance to stretch, or I'll do it the station after getting gas. I don't like to try to read one while riding, no matter how large the font. I have waterproof bags from my military days for my clothes, but like I said, most hotels I stay at have laundry services and I'll do my laundry every third day. Highway pegs are real nice... except when you get too comfortable and almost doze off doing 80 and your foot slides off the peg........ I top off on my own fluids when stopping for fuel, never found the need to drink while riding. That bottle of water has been in my saddle bags for years now. Nothing worse than having to pee while riding, so I limit how much I drink. That's just me though.....
 

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Im envious of you. I wish you a safe and memorial trip. I hope to do the same on my bike in the very near future. Take your time, take it all in. I did a cross country from San Diego to Maine in my truck and travel trailer a few years back and have always regretted not taking more time.
The link you posted was excellent! Some of the ideas really stood out and I thought were great ideas. First thing is a no-brainer, a GPS. The uses are many more then just getting from point a to b. And you can integrate a few of the articles idea with your GPS.
It mentions to take one day off a week for doing nothing. This is perfect to just drive off with no route plugged into the GPS, but still know where you are. My Garmin (Nuvi1100 $90 @Walmart...cheap and I love this thing!) will show where Ive been (like bread crumbs) and exactly where I am at the push of a convenient button. Essential in an emergency. I also like it cause I can see other land features around me on the map I wouldnt have otherwise had known about, that I may want to check out ie, quick dip in a river near by.. I also use a feature on it called "Eco". It tracks my driving habits and scores me and I can track my mpg more efficiently.
The article also mentioned "doing routine maintenance at home with your bike’s toolkit, so you’re sure you have what you need along the side of the road". And "It is possible to use a kit to make emergency repairs on tubeless or tube-type tires alongside the road. But before you count on this as your safety net, practice using the kit on an old tire in your garage".
These ideas are excellent! Im all about preparedness, PM, and practicality. Kinda made me think about what tools I carry right now. I just assume whats in my toolkit is adequate for a local trip situation. But being out on the open highway is a whole different animal. The can of fix a flat is also pretty **** good idea.
Have a good trip and post pix along the way while resting up in your hotel room!
 

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I guess all those folks that call me a caveman must be right. I still like using my maps and atlas for finding my way around... they never need batteries or let me down. I seldom go farther than 125 miles between stops for fuel anyway. Me personally, I'd rather invest in a pillion bag (I did) than go the second set of saddlebags route. A well packed pillion bag seems a better backrest to me than my bed roll (too soft). Most well made pillion bags are waterproof. Either that or a solid built backpack. A lot of them are waterproof also. Have you made distance runs with your running partners before?
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
******Have you made distance runs with your running partners before? ********
Yes, and no...
A couple are fellow ABATE of GA members, we`ve ridden together, several times, but one of the guys is new to the crowd, he and I are gonna ride together before the trip, so as to get signals and proceedure down pat...
**** As far as the map thing goes, I always liked to stop and get off the bike to look at maps. ****
Yeah, I kinda get tangled in the map as it unfolds in the wind, sometimes...
BUT the route info I stick on the tank with magnets will just be reminder of upcoming interstate changes in which towns such as I-75 Chatnooga, I-24 - I-64 etc...in BIG print...
Got it memorized mostly, anyhow...
***Nothing worse than having to pee while riding, so I limit how much I drink.***
Leathered up, I`ll sweat most of it out, BUT I aughtta hook up a drain, huh... :)
Naah, we ain`t on no marathon run, we`re enjoying the ride... ;)
Thanks fer the tips...
Keep `em coming,
Dennis
T-Minus-10 Days
 

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with a drain, I'll bet no one will fight you for the back postion on the ride huh!!!

Is one way for just transit and the return for sightseeing or are you just pretty much hauling butt going each direction?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Oh yeah, I got one of the waterproof military duffles, it got straps like a backpack and a tote handle too, about three feet long by 20" round......I seen sgt. Pusser toting the same bag yesterday whilst watching Walking Tall...
I used it my last 1200+ miler, tied on as my backrest with sleepingbag, and other stuff inside...
It done good as support also...
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I`m not normally an interstate traveler, (EXCEPT to get where I`m going quicker) I`d rather do federal highways and state roads...
BUT we gotta make some good time going there also...
Don`tchya know that 14 days away from home will make me ready to get back in my bed, fer sure!!!
 

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Oh yeah, I got one of the waterproof military duffles, it got straps like a backpack and a tote handle too, about three feet long by 20" round......I seen sgt. Pusser toting the same bag yesterday whilst watching Walking Tall...
I used it my last 1200+ miler, tied on as my backrest with sleepingbag, and other stuff inside...
It done good as support also...
My old seabag made a couple of coast to coasters and my first Alaskan highway run. Tougher and simpler bags have never been made!!!
 

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It was pretty much a 'no duh' list.

Adders: First aid kit with chemical ice, sun screen and tobacco for insect stings.

Just got back from BC and a smart phone would have been way helpful when looking for a bike shop open on a Saturday, with a 120-90-17 front tire in stock and staff/time to install. Found one by pure BS accident. Also for hotels, campgrounds, weather and highway conditions. This is one addition we will be making.

Breakaway throttle controller. I use a Rocker but even that gets ouchie after 8 hours - Cramp Buster is a better product. Regular throttle locks make me nervous, especially since there were two near misses with deer on this outing. Not an issue with a Breakaway.

I find GPS to be useless most times. A cheat sheet with "US 101 to WA 102" in big letters is the best reference while 'on the fly'. BUT.....a smart phone with internet and GPS capability? Oh yeah!

Forget the miles per day BS unless it is all highway riding. Operate on an 'hours in the saddle' schedule instead.

Wish I could scheme up a way to make a motorcycle tow bar so another bike could get pulled into the next burg.

Tools, everything you need to do regular maintenance including feeler gauges for valves and electronic tire pressure gauge. I have stickers on the bikes for oil pressures, oil filter #, valve settings, torques, etc. PS: Fix-a-flat wont work on tube tires.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
As the clock ticks away the days, I`m thinking of more things...
Y`all are a big help on this matter, PLEASE keep me informed with your knowledge and experience...
"Back in the day" I would load up, ride from Sebring FL to Valosta GA to meet up with Street Choppers ~ "Run to the Sun" each year and Ride to Daytona, before it was called Bike week...
SO I`ve got a few ideas on what and how much to carry...
I started this thread to give me your "GO LIST"...
Keep it coming,
Thanks,
Dennis
T -9
 

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I'm betting you are really staring to chomp at the bit waiting to get going on this trip!!!. I have no use for one on a daily basis but the phone w/ internet capability comes in nice. I forgot about bringing something for bee stings. Them little *******s hurt when they land stinger first right under the glasses at 75 mph!!! I completely agree with you on the GPS. I don't need breadcrumbs to tell me where I've been, maps tell me where I'm going and I can do the math at the gas pump to make sure my meileadge holds true. Cramp Busters are the way to go, though I still like my throttle lock for the big open stretches. Not being worth a crap as a mechanic, I don't have the need to carry more than just my basic bikes took kit. If you can find a safe place to stow your wallet when riding, that can be nice in the summer. Otherwise a wallet can start to wear a hole in your butt if you have to do a 12 to 15 hour day in the saddle. If you are going to spend money on something... besides boots, my recommendation is to NOT go cheap on raingear. You might only need it once, but good fitting raingear that is easy to get on and off and fastens under your boot heel really makes life nice!!! Just remember back when you chased the sun and know that now it's going to be even better. Finding out you forgot something just shows your ability to do without... don't stress... I'm looking forward to hearing some great roadtrip stories and lessons learned when you get back!
 
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