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  #401  
Old 15th January 2021
Crusty Crusty is offline
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One Of Those Nights


Iím having one of those nights. I woke up at 3:00 AM and the Committee in my head immediately convened. So I got up and played a couple of games on the laptop. Then I started looking at motorcycle parts.

There arenít many parts to look for to finish up the Gentlemanís Express. I pretty much know what parts I need and how much theyíre going to cost. But I still have the 78 Sportster down in the basement and it needs quite a bit. I had thought that the parts it needs are going to be a lot more expensive than the prices Iíve found. So far, Iíve spent the last hour looking at all kinds of things.

I was wondering if Iíve started looking at the 78 because itís winter. I spent a good bit of time playing with it last winter after I got back from Australia. Then I found the 16 Roadster and began building the Express, and the 78 got put on the back burner.

I could get sucked into building the 78. It needs a lot. A couple of items it needs are Swap Meet items. The right exhaust bracket for the chrome salami exhaust. The parts for the front of the seat so it mounts on the frame properly. I need to find a Superglide tank. It needs a generator and a clutch kit and cables; throttle, clutch, rear brake and Speedometer. I donít know what else. I guess that once I get my plastic paid down, Iíll be able to start back in on playing with it.

Part of me is saying that I could just buy some of the cheaper items. Twenty bucks for a cable or other cheap items. I know where that leads, though. If I do that, the payments on the plastic will get smaller and Iíll become obsessed with building the bike. Like I became obsessed with building the Gentlemanís Express.

When I bought the 16, I told myself that I was just buying the bike. I wasnít going to make any changes until both the plastic and furnace were paid off. That didnít even last a day, once I flew to Wichita and started riding it home. I didnít even get out of Kansas before I ordered brake and clutch levers and new hand grips. The ride home convinced me that I had to change the handlebars, and I was off and running. A sizable amount of debt later, the Gentlemanís Express is a reality. But the debt is still there and itís a lot bigger than it was last year at this time.

If I start buying ďCheapĒ parts for the 78, a year from now, Iíll still be in debt. I want to get it paid off and the only way to do that is to not buy unnecessary things; like parts to restore a 43 year old motorcycle.

Maybe once I get the debt cut in half of what it currently is, Iíll be able to start buying little items for the 78. But thatís going to be several months. And it feels like an alcoholic saying, "Well; if I can go six months without a drink, then I should be able to handle only having one or two!"

In the meantime, itís winter. I have things to do for both the Roadster and the Express. I guess Iíll concentrate on that. Thereís a beautiful new Alto Carbonite clutch kit still sitting on the dining room table. maybe itís time to put that in the express.

But not at 5:00 AM.
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  #402  
Old 15th January 2021
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crusty View Post
One Of Those Nights


Iím having one of those nights. I woke up at 3:00 AM and the Committee in my head immediately convened. So I got up ..................

................. maybe itís time to put that in the express.

But not at 5:00 AM.
No time like the present!

I have lots of things to do on both bikes and have most of the parts, but the cold has deprived me of all motivation.

You have been most productive!
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  #403  
Old 16th January 2021
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Two lines of thought John, 1-Git-r-done, 2-why do today what you can put off for tomorrow. Me, I’d probably ride somewhere, but that’s me. Do what you gotta do!
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  #404  
Old 16th January 2021
Crusty Crusty is offline
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Short Strokes


Itís a grey winter day. The temp is right around the freezing mark. The highs are supposed to be in the mid 30s and the lows are supposed to be in the low 20s right through the 10 day forecast with show showers off and on almost every day.

It snowed during the night. Not enough to count; just a dusting. Itís supposed to do it again this afternoon and again overnight. Itís not super cold, nor is the snow going to accumulate, but along with the leaden skies it makes for a bleak winter.

I doubt Iíll be going anywhere outside the house beyond the mailbox today.

***

When I was at the supermarket yesterday, I bought some ďsalad bowlĒ containers. I had measured the OD of the clutch plates and I measured the diameter of the containers. The clutch kit would fit in one, so I bought them. There were on sale - a package of 3 for $2.99. My Carbonite clutch plates have been sitting in one of them covered with Formula + for about 20 hours. Iíve been debating with myself if I should change out the clutch on the Express today. I probably wonít be taking it out for a few days, so I have plenty of time to do the job.Then again, if I do change it out, the bike will sit for a while before I get a chance to see if I like the new clutch. I also wonder if the oil will penetrate the clutch fibers as thoroughly in the colder temps. Maybe it would be smarter to let the plates sit for another day or so. I donít think sitting in oil for a longer time will hurt anything, so Iím leaning toward letting them sit. Iím also thinking that I might just bring the bowl (it is covered) upstairs into the heated house until itís time to start the job.

***

AFT finally released its schedule for 2021. The DuQuoin Mile is back once again. I checked with Gargle and itís 325 miles to the track. DuQuoin is one of the prettiest tracks Iíve been to and it matches Springfield for the quality of racing. I have a pretty good idea where Iím going to be on July 17. I hope tickets go on sale soon. I have my tickets for Springfield. Iíll have a ticket for DuQuoin as soon as they go on sale.

***

I guess I had better start replacing my tired out camping gear soon. REI has a 3 1/2Ē self inflating pad on sale in their closeout section. I should probably get that first. When I get my tax refund, Iíll get the new tent. I plan to get an exact replacement for my current tent. Iím really surprised that such a great tent sells for so cheap. $249.00 for a brand new tent is one hell of a deal. The USMC was instrumental in the design of this tent and it shows in both its durability and design. I got my present tent (a birthday present from David) in August of 2015 as a surplus tent and it has been a case of instant love and appreciation. I lived in this tent for a while and even though it is now wearing out, it has been more than good to me.

***

I just had a magnificent BLT for brunch. Iíve figured out the formula (recipe?) to make a truly incredible sandwich. Since Iím feeling generous, Iíll share it with you.

Toast a Kroger Private Selection Brioche roll (If you can find a Martin's Potato Bread Roll; even better!)

Take three slices of Wrightís thick sliced bacon and cut them in half so that you have six 5Ē or so pieces and fry them over low to medium heat

Spread Hellmanís Mayonnaise on both toasted roll halves

(This is the hard part) Find a good tomato and slice it into pieces that will just cover one side of the roll.

Get a head of iceberg lettuce and rip some pieces that will cover the diameter of the roll

When the bacon is cooked, and has sat on paper towels to absorb the excess grease, put two slices of bacon on the bottom of the roll.

Next, put the tomato on top of the bacon

Then put two more slices of bacon.

Then the lettuce.

Then the last two pieces of bacon

Then the top half of the roll.


Pour yourself a good cup of coffee and enjoy a bit of Nirvana.

Have a Nice Day!
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  #405  
Old 17th January 2021
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Damn John, I just ate, read this and am now hungry again!
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  #406  
Old 19th January 2021
Crusty Crusty is offline
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Gear Shopping


I need to get some new camping gear. Not everything, but I need a new sleeping pad and a new tent. I have no complaint with the gear Iím replacing; it has served me well. It has become old and not quite up to the task, though. The tent has developed a few small rips in the door screens and one of the poles has started to split at one end. Minor annoyances, but they are red flags that itís reaching its end of life. My sleeping pad has developed problems with the air valves and it loses air over a day or two where it used to stay air tight. Considering that I lived on the road for two years, a six year life span is pretty remarkable.

Iím going to get a new tent when I get my Income Tax Refund. Iím impressed enough with my present tent that Iím going to get the same one. Itís the best tent Iíve ever owned by a wide margin. I got it as used Military Surplus, yet it has endured a lot of abuse. Iím amazed that the price of a new replacement is so low. At $250.00 itís a steal of a deal.

The sleeping pad, however, is going to be upgraded. My present pad is an REI 3.5 pad. While it was a great pad, REI no longer offers it, so Iím going to go with a 4 inch pad this time. Iíve gotten older and a thicker pad will be better for a couple of reasons. First, Iíll be more comfortable. Forty years ago, I had no trouble sleeping on the ground. Now, I hurt after sleeping in a bed. Also, the thicker pad offers better insulation. Iím planning to ride to Tuktoyaktuk next year. Permafrost is real there. If Iím camping, I donít want to sleep on a slab of ice without good insulation.

I toyed with the idea of getting a six inch thick pad. That might be a better choice for Arctic camping. But the 50% higher price and larger packed bulk are definite deterrents. Iíll try the 4Ē pad this summer and see how I like it. I think itíll be OK. In the specs, REI states that itís among the best for Winter and colder conditions and the R factor is close to 7. The jury is still out, though. Since I wonít be buying right away, I have time to mull over if the extra bulk when itís packed is worth it. If the 4Ē pad is warm enough, why would I want the extra bulk of a 6Ē pad on the bike?

These are the questions that run through my mind at 4:00 AM when I wake up and canít get back to sleep. I prefer having to deal with issues like these when the committee in my head convenes than the extremely frustrating things that go on when I get caught up in Politics. Now; at 5:00 AM, I can go back to sleep and let my subconscious decide which is the better choice. More money and more packed bulk, or less bulk, but still warm enough and more affordable.
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  #407  
Old 19th January 2021
5mel42 5mel42 is offline
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I spent a lot of time working in the NWT before I retired, and much of it was in tents. The helicopter company I worked for still has a base in Inuvik, just a bit south of Tuk. Another option to consider to get you off the ground, and above the rocks and roots, is a cot. Helinox makes a sturdy, lightweight, easy to assemble cot that I've been using for the past few years and is worth it's weight in gold now that I'm older. Just that six or eight inches above the surface makes all the difference. It even makes it easier to get your boots on and off when sitting on it. It packs up into a small cylinder shape and straps on wherever you like. They aren't cheap, but I don't care to go back to a sleeping pad for the little extra time it takes to set up or take down. I have an MEC (similar to REI, in Canada) pad that is super comfotable, and when I'm not concerned about bulk, I'll take both. Otherwise. just the cot and a ThermaRest foamy. You'll be going into a remote area and you can't just go to WalMart to pick up something to sleep on when your pad gets a hole in it.

Keep in mind that weather can change quickly and the bugs (mosquitoes, black flies and horseflies) will drive you crazy. Snow can arrive around the middle of August in the Mackenzie delta, so you'd best be out of there well before that. The 24 hour daylight is the best. In summer, temps can be pleasant and at times even hot, but it's a short season.

in the photo, the Helinox is bungeed to the left saddlebag, just to give you an idea of size.

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  #408  
Old 20th January 2021
Crusty Crusty is offline
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Thank you for that information. You were the first to recommend a cot, but a couple of others have, also. I have a friend who is going to let me try out a cot he's got at the May Buell rally in Georgia. My plan, at present, is to make the ride North in June of 22.

I've been wanting to ride to the Arctic Circle since the 70s, but something always happened to stop me. When I first heard that there was going to be a road to Tuktoyaktuk, I got that flash that told me I would be able to travel, not just to the Arctic Circle, but all the way to the Arctic Ocean (Beaufort Sea). This is a true Bucket List item for me.

I have been on the Equator in Kenya and the tropic of Capricorn in Australia. I've ridden motorcycles in the Tropics, North Temperate Zone and the South Temperate Zone. Next year, I'll get to chalk up the Arctic! I'll also jog over to Alaska and chalk up State #49 that I've ridden a Sportster in, along with a few more Canadian Provinces.

This is going to be an Adventure!
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  #409  
Old 20th January 2021
5mel42 5mel42 is offline
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A friend of mine flies out of Inuvik and is the base manager there for the company I formerly worked for. He was born and raised in Inuvik and would be a wealth of information for that portion of your trip. He often drives to Whitehorse and back when he just HAS to get out of town, so he knows the Dempster well. Winter and summer. Let me know if you'd like to contact him at some point.

The Mackenzie delta used to be a very busy place, with lots of oil-related activity, but for the last few years, it's been slowly dying. Many hotels and services have closed and people have moved away. It's now mainly an administrative centre for government and native groups. I haven't driven the road to Tuk, but I've heard mixed reports. Building on permafrost is definitely a challenge where solid foundational material is hard to get..
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  #410  
Old 21st January 2021
Crusty Crusty is offline
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01/21/2021

Iím cranky, this morning. I woke up at 5:30 with a bladder that was screaming at me, then, as soon as I got back in bed, the committee in my head convened and they were doing their best Antifart/BLT imitation and my mind was Downtown Seattle/Minneapolis. I lay there for about 10 minutes, then decided things were not going to quiet down, so I got up.

Playing Solitaire, Circle the Cat and Minesweeper helped to settle my head, but by the time that happened, the sky was getting light on the Eastern horizon. So I started the coffee and brushed my teeth. When I checked my e-mail, the USPS let me know that my package was Out For Delivery today. Itís a 12 foot extension so that I can plug my ear buds (pieces? Shells?) into the TV. Don gave me the ear things for Christmas and they help me hear people on my cell phone a lot clearer. He said that if I watch a movie with them plugged into the TV, itíll be like sitting in a theater. The 12 foot extension cable cost me a whopping $4.52, so I figured Iíd try it. I was thinking that Iíd watch a Marvel movie when the cable arrived; The Avengers or Doctor Strange or even Guardians of the Galaxy, but Iíve decided that in honor of the Inauguration, Iíll watch The Revenge of the Sith tonight.

Iím going to have enough money to get by until Monday when I get my SS deposit, so I think Iíll get extravagant and buy dinner. Iíve been wanting Burnt Ends for a couple of weeks, and I have a $20.00 bill thatís burning a hole in my wallet. I was going to wait until next week, but Iím probably going to be holed up because of the weather. Today, the high temperature is supposed to hit 48ļ F (9ļ C), so I think I should go out for a ride. Besides the fact that a ride should help my crappy attitude, Iím hoping that the Carbonite Clutch will break in and stop squealing.

Right now, Iím thinking that if the squeal doesnít get better, Iíll put the stock clutch back in the bike. Iíll probably change out the Grenade plate before I head to Tuk, next year. I could try a few different variations. The XR 1200 pieces supposedly work well. And Alto makes a Grenade Plate (Spring Plate) that uses stainless steel rivets, instead of brass items. Iím not sure which way would be best. Iím leaning toward the Alto spring plate, but I probably will give it time and watch the XL Forum to see how people like them.

I looked at the MoFoCo BIG Reveal yesterday. The salesman at Cin City was right; there are only three Sportsters being offered. There are seven Cruisers and 13 (Garbage Wagons)] I mean, Touring Bikes from the entry level Electra Glide Standard ($18,999) to the Luxurious CVO Limited ($44,099). As I said on the Forum yesterday, work boots cost less than fancy dress shoes. This is what to expect when a Shoe Salesman runs a Motorcycle Company.

So, basically, Iím feeling very pissy. Iím going to fix a BLT for breakfast, hit a meeting, then put on a few miles. On the way home, Iíll stop at Velvet Smoke and pick up dinner.

Hopefully, all that will improve my mood.
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