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  #871  
Old 20th January 2023
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Crusty Crusty is offline
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As The Drier Turns


Yesterday, David and I drove up to New Philadelphia to where Joe works and I got the gas tank for the Gentlemanís Express. It looks even better in real life than it does in the photos that Joe sent me.

David and Joe were thinking that the tank would be on the bike within a few hours of me arriving home, but it isnít on the bike yet. I didnít get much sleep on Wednesday night and I was really tired by the time I got home. I deliberately didnít try to put the tank on, because I know myself well enough and I donít want to do something stupid and mess up that paint. Iíll be putting the tank on shortly. Right now, I have a load of laundry in the drier and another load of sheets that needs to go in and get dry so I can put them on the bed. Once the sheets are done, Iíll start on the gas tank.

Yesterday, we had a real mixed bag of weather. It had been warm and raining in Cincinnati up until shortly before we set out. The rain was moving to the northeast, so we were chasing the rain almost all the way up to Joeís workplace.

The ride up was pretty uneventful until we got on I 77. Then, we saw a lot of State Troopers with both Cars and Semis pulled over. I think we saw something like 6 or 7 Troopers in the 35 miles or so we were on I 77.

We met up with Joe and went to a Mexican joint across the street for lunch. While talking, Joe expressed an interest in helping me pull the cats out of the mufflers. So; some Saturday in the not-too-distant future, Iím going to ride up to Canton and watch Joe perform surgery. I have a very high regard for Joeís skills, since my skills are in different areas. Also, Joe likes new and different projects. He has done some very helpful things for the Gentlemanís Express. He fabricated the front fender mounting bracket, improved the saddlebag mounts, made windshield brackets and now, heís willing to help gut the cats from the mufflers. Thatís besides doing some flawless paint and body work for three different bikes.

The weather turned really nice. It was sunny when we came out of the restaurant and the temperature kept rising. We stopped to get some coffee near Zanesville, and the temperature was 63ļ F (17ļ C). I was down to my T-shirt and we were opening the windows in the car to cool the interior down. On January 19!

Unfortunately, that didnít last. Coming down I 71 towards Cincinnati, we saw black thunderheads ahead of us. We soon were in heavy rain, with strong winds well before we got into the city. Once we were in Cincinnati, however, the rain ended and the sun came out. But the temperature started dropping rapidly. By the time I got home, it was down into the mid-40s. The wind was fairly strong and stayed so all night long. When I got up, this morning, the temp was 34ļ F (1ļ C) and itís supposed to rise all the way to 36ļ F (2ļ C) until tonight when it gets colder.

Thatís OK; itís January and itís supposed to be cold; thirty-degree temps arenít really that cold.

Well; the drier should be done. Iíd better go get the sheets and make the bed. Then, Iíll go put the beautiful gas tank on the Express.

It really is a nice day, in spite of the weather!
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  #872  
Old 21st January 2023
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Crusty Crusty is offline
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Sportster/Buell Model: XL 1200 CX
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Trip Planning


Yesterday, I put the tank on the Express. She’s very close to being ready for the trip. As I said, I’m going to go up to Joe’s one weekend and he’s going to cut and remove the cats from the extra mufflers I bought. If they aren’t too loud, they’ll be on the bike for the trip. And I’m holding off the chain drive conversion until it’s almost time because I don’t want to wear out the chain prematurely. However, I could head out now, if the weather allowed. The Gentleman’s Express is capable of making the trip.

So this morning, I’ve been planning routes and this is what I’ve come up with so far.
The first leg will be from Cheviot, Ohio to Cedaredge, Colorado; where I’ll visit with an old friend for a day or two. Then I’ll be heading up through Utah and over to Salmon, Idaho where I’ll pick up US Route 93 and I’ll stay on Route 93 all the way to Jasper, Alberta. I still remember the sign for Route 40 just outside Jasper that states, Scenic Route To Alaska. That almost had me when I passed through in 2016, but I didn’t have enough money to do it. From that point, I’ll follow Google’s route to Tuktoyaktuk.

Now; I’m nor sure how long my tires will last. I’ve been averaging 8,000 miles on paved roads, but I’ll be covering well over 1,000 miles on dirt roads. I don’t know if they’ll wear quicker or the same. So I’m thinking that I probably should get a new set around midway. Since I’ve been planning to jog over to Alaska (it’s less than 100 miles from Dawson City to the border), I’ve been thinking that maybe I should head up into Fairbanks and get tires. It makes sense to.

This morning, as I was plotting a route, I started thinking about people wanting to go to Prudhoe Bay. It’s the “Destination” to go to. The thing that gets me is that you can’t ride all the way to the ocean on the Dalton Highway. You have to park at Dead Horse and take a bus. That’s why I decided to go to Tuk when they finished the road a few years ago. Still; I started looking at mileage. I could ride to Deadhorse and when I figured the mileages for the complete route, it only adds 1,000 miles to the trip. Only; um, yeah.

Now gas prices aren’t that bad in Fairbanks, but in places along the way through Canada, gas is running 2-3 times as much; and I imagine it’s considerably more expensive along the Dalton Highway. I looked at Gas Buddy, but they aren’ showing prices for a lot of places. Well; that’s what ATMs and credit cards are for. Some places are cash only, but many gas stations take credit cards. I’ll be carrying my Discover and Mastercards and hopefully, a reasonable amount of cash.

I’m hoping to stop at a friend’s house in Iowa on the way home. I haven’t seen him and his wife since 2016. The only people I’ll be visiting on the trip will be in Cedaredge, CO and Mechanicsville, IA. (And I’m not sure about Iowa; I haven’t asked Matthew yet).

This trip is a Bucket List item for me. I’ve had a few friends ask if they could ride along with me. And while I really don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings or piss them off, I need to do this trip Solo. I care about my friends, but I have to say no on this. It’s something I have to do on my own.

On this trip, I’ll be adding Alaska to my list of States I’ve ridden in, as well as a few Provinces; I’ve ridden in Ontario,British Columbia and Alberta, but I’ll be adding the Northwest Territories, Yukon and Saskatchewan (and maybe Manitoba, if I work it right).

It’s going to be the Ride of a Lifetime. (until the next one!)
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  #873  
Old 21st January 2023
Andy56 Andy56 is offline
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Many years ago my mother asked some friends if they were interested in going to New Zealand. She was very glad when they turned her down.
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  #874  
Old 24th January 2023
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Crusty Crusty is offline
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Dinner For Breakfast


Itís 9:20 AM and Iím eating Beef Stew for breakfast. Iíll probably have a BLT for dinner tonight. Some days are like that.

You see; yesterday I got my Social Security, and I did a major shop. I was out of almost everything, and I spent a sizable amount on expensive foods like meat. I bought 2 pounds of stewing beef, along with the ground beef, sausage, Pork chops and chicken. I also bought baby carrots and yellow potatoes. I already had the magic dust and onions to put in with the stew beef, potatoes and carrots, so at 9:00 PM I threw everything into the crock pot and let it cook overnight.

I got up to pee at 4:00 AM and while I was up, I went into the kitchen and stirred the stew, then let it continue to cook until 8:00. At that time, it was done and I shut off the crock pot.

I had no intention of having Beef Stew for breakfast, but the smell was throughout the house and I couldnít resist. And it tastes wonderful. I can understand why Esau in the Bible traded his inheritance for a dinner of Stew; if it smelled as good as this beef stew does. Then again; as good as the stew is, I wouldnít even consider trading the Gentlemanís Express for it. Esau must have been starving.

Thatís the trouble with cooking in the crock pot overnight. Iíll be doing pulled chicken this week, (Probably tomorrow night), so I expect Iíll be having a Pulled Chicken sandwich for breakfast on Thursday or Friday. Maybe Iíll have a BLT for dinner that night, too.


****************************

I think Iíll take some pictures of the Express. Itís looking really good. Itíll look about the same when I head out for the Arctic, though Iím thinking that I should put crash bars on it. If I do, the bars will be black.

Anyhow; the bike is dirty. I was thinking that I should wash it first, but maybe I should take some pics of it in its natural state, then clean & shine it and take more Photos. Iím toying with the idea of detailing the evolution of the Gentlemanís Express in a longish narrative as it has gone from a stock 2016 Roadster to a comfortable mile eater. Most people will look at it as a mildly modified Sportster, but those with some mechanical experience will appreciate just how different it is and how much work has gone into it. And even if nobody cares, I will know. Sheís my bike, and there isnít another one just like it anywhere.

Well; enough. The sun is shining and the temp is heading for 42ļ F (5.5ļ C) Whereís my camera?
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  #875  
Old 24th January 2023
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Crusty Crusty is offline
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My crappy little Point & Shoot just doesn't quite capture the beauty of the paint. Even so, it looks pretty sweet to me!






In the sunlight









Pardon my finger

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  #876  
Old 24th January 2023
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sprink sprink is offline
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Loooookin' Good!
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  #877  
Old 24th January 2023
Dusz Dusz is offline
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Looks good.
Your planned ride looks very interesting too.
Do you get any buffeting with the screen? I have a similar height screen on my XL883L. In the end I fitted a Honda Goldwing screen vent (approx. £35 on eBay) and that seems to have made a big difference. The science says that without the vent there is a low pressure zone behind the screen that pulls the high level airstream towards your helmet, hence the buffeting. The vent allows air to be bled into the void to reduce the low pressure zone.
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  #878  
Old 24th January 2023
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Crusty Crusty is offline
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I had a similar windshield on my 2005 Roadster and it worked well enough for over 100,000 miles that I searched for an exact replacement when I got the '16 Roadster. I haven't ridden with it enough yet to determine if it works as well on a '16, but I expect it will. The first 200 miles when I rode home with it went well enough. I was too preoccupied with the knocking that started coming from the engine to pay much attention to how well the shield was working; but I think I would have noticed if there was turbulence.
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  #879  
Old 25th January 2023
gravydog gravydog is offline
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Looking good John, after seeing the side pic of the bike, I think I have a plan for the mufflers.
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  #880  
Old 25th January 2023
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John, really sweet, you can be justifiably proud. And yes , so much of the labor will simply be in noticed by most any casual observer.
Congratulations!
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