2023 plans

The new year has started and the trip blog from 2022 has finishes, time to look forward on the plans for this year.

Yesterday i officially turned over my VFROC job to my succeeder and upcoming Thursday i have the last evaluation from the Christmas Truckrun and then i don;t have any obligations to other organisations any more.
That doesn’t mean i don’t do anything for others, i still man the booth for the VFROC one of the days at the motor convention, still applied for a task at Truckrun Horst and will do the Christmas truckrun as a traffic controller but all as a volunteer for the one day of the event without any obligations around the events.

Finished with obligations other than my day job i slowly can start looking into the big plans.
I need to look at the situation in South Africa, you can say there is a new apartheid going on but now the black community against the white.
The whole apartheid was wrong but that is the past and doing the same when you as an oppressed population reach the moment you can run the country you’re no better than the people in the old days. Maybe even worse because you didn’t learn from the past and other peoples mistakes.
That said, i still look into it because the news only shows the worst and often it’s not very different than the worst situations in your own country.
The fact that i only get in by a work permit in a critical skills job far at least 2 years i have South America as plan B.
I haven’t get to a deeper look for that option and in the worst case i have a plan C but i get to that later on.

That’s all internet research, phone calls and i hope to get some meetings with tour operators. I keep you posted on that when something is worth mentioning.
There is still a need for fun and that fun is also practice and learning opportunity’s.
The “new” bike and getting into the offroad community brings not only new challenges but also new friends and with one of those new friends the first weekend trip will happen somewhere in April.
He’s German living near Cologne a hair over an hour from here and Germany is not allowing much offroad riding so we planned to do the TET NL. We did a big chunk of the new part as a day of fun and learning for him and that weekend we will going north with a night camping.
Plans are not made but other than a definite date and where we go pick up the trail will not be made, just how i like it.

Then the wish is to make 2 long trips. Last year i did the big trip in July because of the limited window up north but this year i go in September again and even 2 weeks later.
I only can take 4 vacation days to the new year and every year i’m left with more than that so this year i want to take those days to have fun and not to take days off to avoid sponsoring the IRS (vacation days paid are heavily taxed over here) but not able to make use of them.
So to break the long time between the period with free days off (Easter, Ascension Day etc.) i’m planning to to some TET Serbia.

It’s 2 long days to get there and 2 even longer days to get back but i haven’t been to Serbia yet. The TET (turquoise, green and purple) will be 6 to 7 days but it’s not a goal to do it complete. The four days there and back are sacrificial and probably nuts and i will see how much i get done in 6 days and i’m also not sure when i will go.
There is the issue Serbia – Kosovo going hot and cold, i will keep an eye on that and if it will be too dangerous to go when i leave i have the TET Croatia and Bosnia with maybe Montenegro as a back up, Montenegro and Albany are too far for a short trip which is a shame because i really like those country’s but like i said, i’ve non been in Serbia yet so that is the first choice.

Then September…
Last year i went to Discover Overland for the first time, i wanted to go there before but i’m always on vacation the first three weeks of September and this weekend is always the third weekend of September and this year that would be 15 – 17.
The 15th is a Friday and the campsite opens at 18:00, plan is to pack Sporherre the day(‘s) before and take Ragnarok to work where i finish at 16:00, go home make final checks and head of for Discover Overland. Enjoy the Friday and Saturday and leave Sunday morning on a sacrificial day to the south of France.
From there it’s on to Andorra and from there into Spain, hopefully visit Gibraltar and on to Portugal out via the Picos de Europe and a Sacrificial day home.
Planing on doing the TET Andorra, Spain and Portugal i discovered that will be at least 4 day’s more than i have.

That trip is still a work in progress, the red’s sticking out are TET tracks and the Purple are my blue routes over the red TET.
For now it’s looking for alternative tracks and try to find out what parts of the TET are the least exciting to skip using paved roads to buy some time and try to persuade my boss to grant me 4 weeks for once but that might be difficult.
The whole Covid and Russian invasion had the truck building industry flat on it’s ass and a lot of trucks we ordered are coming in around that time.
But it’s still a long time to figure out what to do. Worst case scenario will be me heading of that way without any plan start following the TET and finding my own way until the time is up and i have to hurry home.

That’s it, none of the plans are poured in concrete and none of the plans are definite just like the future is not definite.
We still live in crazy times and when i need to adapt to that craziness i will, just like i did in 2020 with my first big trip. I managed then with no experience travelling the way i do now and now 3 trips in i’m even confident enough to go without any plan.
I always can check how long it takes to get back home and head that way when needed.
Can’t wait to get riding other tracks than the commute options again.

ScanBaltic 2022 Episode 10, The end part 2

I wrapped up the video part of the trip but when i got to Suwalki with the story it was already a long read and i decided to split that up, here’s the rest.

Not long after leaving Suwalki i met up with the TET Poland section 2, here the TET had a nice portion along the logic route to my next destination.
This part of the TET is an easy going part without any technical riding, off course you will come up to some surprises good or bad depending on your skill level and bike you ride but for my level with this bike it was easy and i even would have no problem doing this section with Ragnarok. At least in these weather conditions.

Maybe the most challenging was the navigation. This leg of the trip i also made some adaptations to the TET because it was not routeable or i was afraid it took too long.
Too long is only in time and i hope i get some miracles done at work this year so my boss grant me a 4 week holiday as an exception for my next trip but more about that in the next blog, that will be about the plans for this year.
The adaptations did end up to be controversial again and Garmin messed up this part too as you could have seen in the video.
The unrouteable TET turned out to be a perfectly fine dirt road and the routeable part went over some tracks in the grass probably flattened by a tractor or other agricultural vehicle.
As i did most of the skipping of the TET because of the time it was my logic choice to follow the TET because a clear unrouteable dirt road should be faster than some flattened grass in a meadow.

About halve of this section i followed the TET and the other halve i found my own dirt roads because i had to go a bit more northward of the TET and following the TET a bit longer meant more asphalt in the end.
If you follow Itchy Boots you might know she had a camera mount on the handlebar that broke at some point, i had the same mount and it also broke at some point.
Like i said it was not technical but i made the lack of excitement up with going fast.
The suspension did a superb job but an often made mistake is thinking offroad suspension is soft and comfortable but it isn’t, it has a long travel but it still has to maintain contact with the road and going fast over dirt tracks still cause a lot of vibrations. It doesn’t bottom out like the OEM or even mid level suspension but the mount broke at the same spot as Itchy’s.
Luckily the Insta 360 was just fine.

In Danzig i booked a room just outside the Old town in a new apartment building with a shared bathroom between the 4 rooms but just 2 where occupied i think.
Parking was unclear and nobody seemed to know how parking for motorcycles was regulated in Poland.
I ended up parking the bike right under my window just off the street.
After freshening up it was time to head to Old town Danzig for a little sightseeing and have a bite to eat at another Hardrock Café with more affordable beer as the last one.

The next day it was raining, time to gear up including the rain gear and no camera as the helmet cam is no use in the rain and the mount for the backwards facing camera has broken.
Next destination was Berlin and with 472km i had to stick to the main roads a bit more.
Off course i did a bit offroad because once in Germany that is over but it was not much, also because of lack of dirt roads in the right direction.
For the border crossing i mounted the camera to the crashbar like i did also in Finland at some point and form there it was all main roads (bundesstraßen) until Berlin.
Berlin is a huge town and it took me almost an hour to get from the edge where i entered to the centre where i had a hotel room for 2 nights.
As you know i don’t like big city’s but Berlin has a lot of history until as recent as 1989 when East and West Berlin where reunited.
A major historic event even i remember vert well, maybe also because Faith no More did an Epic cover of Black Sabbath’s War Pigs at a concert celebrating that event.

The receptionist at the hotel was great, he let me park the bike in the courtyard of the hotel, for free. That was a much better place than on the busy side-walk.
Germany is a funny place though, i started in the Netherlands and then crossed Norway, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland and nowhere was any sign left of Covid.
In Germany i had to reserve a time slot for breakfast the evening before because just a certain amount of people where allowed in at the same time, same goes for the mall. There was a line packed with people rubbing against each other but the mall was safe and almost empty and every country i mentioned had no problem with me buying a single coffee or other cheap ass product and pay with plastic. First night in Berlin it was too late to go somewhere but too early to go to sleep so i figured i buy a few beers at the evening store next door and watch some TV or YouTube. Grabbed 2 halve a litre bottles costing €5 and i presented my card… “sorry but you have to pay cash, card is from €10″…
What!!! All over the place they (still or again) have regulations to prevent (indirect) contact but money is still going from hand to hand!!!

Next day was sightseeing day, i have all day to stroll around and i had some tips from Stephan back in Tallinn as he lives in Berlin.
Let’s show you instead of writing everything down…

From Checkpoint Charley i went on to the Bergmannstraße end the Graefestraße, the tips from Stephan.
Overall i had well over 10km under my feet and had to go about 7km back to the hotel. In Riga i downloaded an app for a taxi ride back to the hotel but with this app i also could rent a scooter and they operate is several country’s, also Berlin and that’s why there is a scooter in the pictures. That was my ride back because the 7km route was not a route with sights to see and not worth walking. I could, i also hiked 20km in Croatia when i visited the Plitvice lakes but the boring route would be a waste of energy.
The Hardrock Café was just around the corner from the hotel, a 250 meter walk so it was a nice coincidence that one of the cheaper hotels was so close and in the centre. Off course it was not a high rated luxury hotel but it was in the centre and the room was clean, what more do you need?

Time to head home.
There where some moments i would have needed the few days i had to spare but the weather in the Lofoten was too bad to follow up on the tip to go to Senja that would cost me a day and the split of one of the days was made up when i did 3 sections in 2 days because it went faster as i thought.
Because of that for a short moment i had the idea of not taking the autobahn back home but split it up and take a scenic route.
I didn’t do it because it was an expensive time due to Covid and the situation between Russia and the Ukraine and halve of the time i spent in 2 of the most expensive countries so 1 or even 2 more days would be more costs.
I already spent more this trip than the Balkan trip and this trip i camped a lot, cheap and even free while i never took the tent out in the Balkans.
The parts i would be riding i also have been and possibly end up another time.
To start up i didn’t went for the autobahn right away but first took a few main roads through some towns you might recognise from the few pictures i gave a capture, Potsdam and Brandenburg.
And to make things complicated, there is also a Brandenburger tor in the town of Potsdam.

That was the last picture and there is also nothing worth telling left, it would be why we call “Bondesrepubliek Deutschland” “Baustellenrepubliek Deutschland” and complains about the driving so i spare you that.
Thanks for your interest and on to new adventures and shenanigans to fill the time in between.

ScanBaltic 2022 episode 9, the last days

The series getting longer, Sicily 5 episodes, The Balkans 7 and this trip i ended up with 9 and i stretched the video a bit to 40 minutes but i hope you still like it.
For some reason even though 20 minutes is a nice time i had the feeling splitting this up to 2 episodes would not work but you can always pause halve way and watch the rest later or not if it turns out to be boring. Just say it so i know for a next time, i can handle criticism unlike the woke pussy’s we have nowadays.

Last episode i ended up in Riga and form there i take you through Lithuania to Poland where i stayed in 2 city’s and my last overnights in Berlin.
Before i continue i like to share a few pictures i took in Riga.

In Riga i spotted another T7 with USA plates, i left my card which he discovered much later and emailed me when i was already back home.
We tried to meet up here but when he was almost in the neighbourhood he changes his plans. He was on his way to the UK and according to the forecasts he could get a window with nice/descent weather and made a shortcut to dive in that window.

From here i wanted to cross Lithuania and stay the night just across the border in Poland.
The TET was too much out of the way but in these countries there is no shortage of dirt roads. In Lithuania it was at some points just like Finland, a sign telling you the asphalt was sold out and a main road turned into a gravel road… love it.
In Lithuania i took some real backside dirt roads and found it very interesting that there where a lot of memorials because i could count the people i came across on one hand in that area.
This is one of them.

The original plan was to go to Kaliningrad but due to the war. Even before it was already difficult because the E visa was discontinued as a anti Covid measure and for a normal travel visa i had to apply for it at the embassy incl. the hotel bookings (was also planning to go St Petersburg) but with my kind of travel i cannot book in advance as i don’t know when and where i end up.
I did plan to ride along the border but there was nothing going on. Didn’t make picture because it rained and it was not very exciting. The road was also very corrugated, have a little footage in the video.

Once i turned away from the border it was about 60km to the Polish border and not much further i had plans to stay the night.
But before i got to the border i had a surprise.

This crossing was too risky in this scenario. The bottom was very silty with a high risk of roots and an alternative was less than 500 meters away and after letting the air out of the tyres they felt better but in the mud i had before i ended up here it was hard work to keep Sporherre upright.
When i got back to the road i first checked the spokes because it felt the rim was out of true but they where all fine, had to be the tyre. I think i said it before, the front Mitas E07 will never be fitted again and i think i have a better alternative in the Heidenau K60 Ranger i fitted recently but that’s another item.

The plans for the night also had to change when the road i had plotted turned out to be closed for motorised transport and i had to backtrack.
I wanted to stay at some lake but i decided to stay in Suwalki where i had to go to get to the “planned” place but had to backtrack to Suwalki the next day to get back on track or go the other way around to get to the lake with no guarantee that road was open.
This is where i stopped to figure out where i wanted to stay.

In the hotel i freshened up and went into town for something to eat and to check the town out a bit.
In the park was live music i could enjoy walking around. After a stroll i decided to go back towards the hotel to an Italian restaurant i passed and that turned out to be a good choice.
The food was good but a woman at the table in front of me did not get to that, i think she was stood up for a date as she was crying and how she handled the phone.
After a while i asked the waitress for a piece of paper and a pen and i started writing her a note, i asked the waitress to give it to her without telling who wrote it.
I saw her reading it and when she finished she drank her wine, wiped her tears and left. The waitress had to thank me, it was just what she needed to hear (read) she said…. mission accomplished.
I treated myself with i nice desert and another beer and went back to the hotel.

Next target is Danzig but i think i save the rest of the trip to next week, story wise.
Enjoy the video, like i said a long one and this part will also become very long and i also have pictures enough to dress up an extra episode without a video.

ScanBaltic 2022 episode 8, The Baltics

Finally time to continue this series but it keeps you something to look forward to.
It was a smooth crossing on the ferry from Helsinki to Tallinn and when i got off the first thing i did was going to the motorcycle shop to get a new rear tire because the Anakee Wild was finished.
It was a gamble with this tire, i used this one on Ragnarok and got 9000km out of it but that was mostly asphalt and the offroad was more gentle and hardly any wheelspin.
With Sporherre i did around 4500km with the rear and about double with the front, the guess was that Norway was mostly paved and after that when the offroad started the luggage would prevent crazy riding… I was wrong.
All the way till Finland i had time to get used to Sporherre and his setup for this trip and the weight shedding was a great success so it was very different to the Balkan trip with Ragnarok.
First of all, Ragnarok is stock already 70kg heavier than Sporherre stock. Both have updates but with Sporherre it was all about adding as less as possible and trying to compensate the weight i put on by removing parts i don’t need like passenger footpegs.
The bags on Ragnarok also are heavier just like the old camping gear.
All in all a rough guess make me think i had close to 100kg less to keep on track.

After a few bends and corners on the Finnish gravel roads i learned that i had 2 choices, go very slow or keep the speed and correct the sliding with the throttle and drift.
I had a long way ahead so slow was not an option… and no fun.
Thanks to Norway i got 1500km more out of the rear but after 6000km it was done.
The last days in Finland i already started looking in Estonia for a tire and through a tip from the first store i contacted i found a place in Tallinn with a large stock of different tires including 50/50’s.
I stretched it to Tallinn because Finland is more expensive but the Anakee Wild was even in Estonia very expensive and after checking my options in the inventory i decided to go for the Mitas E07 plus which was a lot cheaper and also on the list with tires i wanted to test and i decided to change the front as well.

Now it was time to get to the old town and find my hotel.
It was a cheap room i booked for 2 nights, cheap because it had no windows but i was planning to only sleep there and spend the time i was in town outside as the weather was great.
For the evening i would meet up with Wolfgang and Stephan for diner and something to drink, the German guys i met in the Hostel in Helsinki and with whom i shared the ferry ride.
The second day i slept a bit longer than planned, the lack of natural light to wake me up was something that slipped my mind but i still had time enough to explore the old town and go the the new part for a couple of SD cards for the camera’s as the ones i had started to get full.

I can tell a lot about old town Tallinn but pictures say more and are more fun than some reading, this is a slightly bigger gallery.

In the evening i would meet up with the guys again, they where also spend a bit longer and we just had a good connection.
On these trips you meet a lot of people but sometimes you get new friendships and we still keep in touch via WhatsApp.
After another night in the dark room i woke up by the alarm i set, i do that every riding day to be sure i get the most out of the day. My ADHD is a bit like a very old diesel car, the ones you had to start with ether and then let it warm up but once it’s running it doesn’t stop even when you turn off the ignition.

When i was planning the trip i found some offroad track just outside Tallinn, the TET was a bit too long and out of the way so i had to find some fun on my way to Latvia.
The tracks turned out to be right next to an army base and probably used for tank practice but it was outside the gates and accessible. I saw some soldiers looking a bit surprised but they greeted friendly when i passed them.
It was what has become a typical Garmin moment, how could this be a perfectly fine road/track. Tip: If you drive a car and use a Garmin XT, stay on the paved roads because the offroad modus will make you turn around a lot. With Ragnarok i also would not be pleased in many cases but for Sporherre it was just great and a good test for the new tires.
Speaking of them, i don’t like them at this point and especially the front and in loose sand in particular.
In loose sand you need speed but i couldn’t get it up to speed because the front was all over the place and i started to regret my choice.

The next offroad part i stopped to check the tire pressure, the mechanic at the shop asked me what pressures i wanted, normally i run 1,7bar front and 1,9 rear but because of the luggage i ran 1,9 and 2,2. I already found the ride on the cobble stones in old Town Tallinn very harsh and this gravel road also.
Guess what? 2,2 in the front and 2,9 in the rear!!! That is the normal pressure for road use in the front and normal rear pressure for Ragnarok. Road use Sporherre is 2,5 in the rear.
No wonder i didn’t like the tires, why ask if you don’t do it anyway?
This is a part in the video where the microphone decided to work for a moment and you can see that after lowering the pressure my riding is like it was in Finland again.
Also like in Finland….

I walked a bit into the bush but i had to find another way that turned out to be a challenge too and i didn’t dare to stop to take a picture or start the camera.
It was very muddy and i wanted to keep my momentum not to get stuck in the middle of nowhere an hour since the last time i passed a car.
Later on i had to make a sanitary stop and there was the proof that not every cyclist is an asshole.
A friendly German long distance traveller on a bicycle stopped to ask if everything was OK because i was standing not in a typical place to stop, as usual i forgot his name…
We had a nice chat and he was going where i came from. There where some bugs annoying us and that brought us to the mosquito’s in Finland where he would ride too.
As a thank you i gave him my Finnish repellent i had no need for any more and after a selfie together we went on with our trips.

Luckily i got in a lot of gravel roads but after the tank track and the missing track it all was straight forward gravel i could ride at regular road speeds with Sporherre.
Next overnight was Riga just across the border with Latvia and just before i met up with the TET again.
This part was not fine for Garmin so i made a routeable section to Riga but had the TET track on it too with the plan to see if i had time to check it out when i got there and i did.
After the “perfectly fine” tracks i was a little worried about the not fine tracks but in Finland i also had “impossible” tracks that where just fine.
When i got to the my entrance three enduro riders came out of the forest, they greeted but when they where passed i saw them all three in my mirrors looking back like they wanted to say “are you going in there with that bike?” and that got me worried again… maybe not fine this time?

What you see in the video looks just fine and that was indeed not too bad but i had the route still going on the Garmin and that was recalculating all the time messing up my zoom level which let me miss a few turns. It was a navigational nightmare and at a couple of misses i shut down the camera to see what i wanted to do and didn’t start it again.
I also shut down the route and tried to get back on the TET for some fun.
Once i got deeper in the TET i understood why the enduro guys where looking like that, it was a bit of a mix between a dirtbike track and an enduro track with a few tough bits.
A couple of time i almost fell and e few moment i had to catch my breath because it was hard work but i loved it and was very happy what that super expensive suspension did with the bike. It already paid for itself 2 time in Finland and here it made the bike feel 50kg lighter and gave me the confidence to keep going.
I think i spend about an hour playing around in the forest (from which about 15 minutes to find my way out) and then it was a good time to find my hotel.

I was in Riga before on a surprise vacation with my ex. If you want to do something different for your vacation and want to fly without knowing your destination until you’re at the airport check sprs.me where you can find citytrips on different budgets and lengths (3 days one city, 5 days 2 cities, 8 days 3 etc.).
Back then we stayed in a hotel in the old town but now the prices where too high so i found a hotel across the bridge, 5 minutes with a taxi.
The nice lady at the reception arranged a taxi for me via an app which i installed later on to get a taxi back and used it later also in Berlin but that’s for the next episode.
For now i leave you with the video. Don’t forget to watch it on YouTube and like and also subscribe if you didn’t already.

New year, old items

Happy new year everybody and a wonderful 2023.
I started with a short trip on the TET section that starts about 20 minutes from my house.

I was editing the video for episode 7 from the ScanBaltic trip but i just had to start the year with some dirt.
I did finish the video and it is rendering as i’m writing this at 23:30 and has still 26 minutes to go.
After that it has to be uploaded to YouTube and i have to write the story that goes with it so you can imagine it has to wait just a little longer but not very long.
After EP 7 there will be one more episode and then it is time to get deeper in my new plans for this year and the big adventure.

Helmet vlog microphone

When i wanted to put the microphone back in the helmet after the repair i thought it might be worth a short video so others can see what i did to get rid of the microphone for the GoPro mediamod.
I thought i made some pictures of the work but apparently i didn’t.

Christmas Truckrun

The next excuse for not finishing the ScanBaltic trip is the Christmas truckrun.
This is an annual truckrun for disabled people and it’s lit… literally.
I’ve been in the organisation for several years in the safety department where it was my task to get the traffic controllers together and approved for the job.

Not the best pictures but it will give you an idea what i mean what i meant with it’s literally lit.

This was the last year i did this and the guy in front is one of the 2 guys taking this job on for the next years.
This made it extra busy this year adding to the challenge it already was because we started a bit late and the Dropbox folder that went missing.
We where late because of the uncertainty if Covid was really gone, take in mind we work for a group of people with high vulnerability and the missing Dropbox folder contained the base file with email addresses from people who might want to be a traffic controller.
I spent a lot of hours into this event putting my personal things on pause but it was all worth it again.
As long as i’m in the Netherlands i will still be doing the runs as a traffic controller and go to the VFROC rides but after 5 or 6 years CTR plus another 3 years before helping my predecessor and 9 years on the board of the VFROC spending a lot of time for others a time for me has come.
The first video is after boarding the clients and the second is line almost ready for departing.

For now i’m a bit in conflict, i really want to finish the ScanBaltic series but i’m also wanting to do absolutely nothing for a moment and the dark winter period is the only time in the year i am able to do nothing, like my ADHD went into hibernation.
Problem is it’s not really and i need to keep an eye on time, if not in a couple of days i live at night and sleep during the day.
You’ll see what’s coming next and don’t forget to subscribe to this blog as well as my YouTube channel @ride4life_motorlifestyle.
Yes i use it mainly to embed the video’s here but subscribing there and liking the video’s helps others finding this page too and as i’m not filming everything subscribing here prevents you missing out on the journey towards the items that are worth filming.

I don’t do Christmas (yes, very strange for someone who spent years helping to organise a Christmas Truckrun) but happy holidays and a tripping 2023!

Sporherre broke down

This week was crazy, Tuesday i had the meeting with the guys who take over my work for the Christmas Truckrun, Wednesday something bad happened at work at one of the worst moments in already a difficult time plus i had an appointment at the barber after work and another meeting with the whole Christmas truckrun organisation.
With the standard long Monday it where three long days and Thursday on the way home sporherre showed a red light on the dash… that means stop immediately!

The light was the overheating warning so i started looking around for reasons why that happened.
I was going quite full on because it was the first time in daylight with the new tyres and i wanted to test them properly now i didn’t have to be somewhere with barely time to have diner.
It didn’t took me long to spot the coolant all over the left side including my boots and pants but where is it coming from?
A known weak point is the water pump but that sits on the right and i have a protective cover fitted.
Second scary part because of the costs is the radiator but that seems dry and if something happens with that it’s most likely in the middle.
On the left is the coolant reservoir and everything points at that part but it had coolant in it and no cracks…. strange.

I don’t have road assistance because i never needed it and most things i can fix myself.
For now i had it cooled down and i was hoping i could get home by going easy but after 2km it was too hot again.
New plan was walk a bit until i had a better place to wait for it to cool down completely.
When i fount that place it also had a light post so while waiting i did some more research and i spotted a disconnected hose, that would explain the coolant and it was right behind the reservoir.
That’s why i always carry my toolkit, also because i tend to make a spontaneous detour when i have time and the weather is nice so i took it out and started fixing the hose.
Remember when i thought my oil cooler had a crack? I guess when i had that apart i didn’t properly put the clamp clip back if i didn’t forget it completely.

Just when i was at the point to put the covers back on a car stopped.
A guy living in Germany about 5km from there got out to check if he could help, he also had a motorcycle but didn’t ride it very much.
As i fixed the real problem my first thought was to get some water to get home but he offered to get me some coolant so i don’t need to flush the system since there was no reason to take it apart again.
He even asked what kind i had in it and went of to a shop in the first town a few kilometres down the road.
When he got back he even didn’t want me to pay for it.
That’s exactly why i’m not afraid to go on those long trips all by myself.
People tend to look for all the bad, reading the news and searching the internet for all kinds of crap around the world but the fact is there are more people like this good Samaritan than people who cause all the news items.
Thursday this guy was my hero and when i get the chance i will pay it forward and help others like i did before, that’s how i like the world to be because if you want to improve the world you have to start with yourself.
And think about it, the internet is full of memes and video’s where bad things happen to bad people with the capture “karma” but karma doesn’t mean when you do bad, bad will happen to you but it means what goes around comes around and that can be good as well.

So, it was a though week but it was all forgotten with this gesture by a total stranger taking some time and afford to help a total stranger.

Work on Sporherre

Just to fill up the void in between episodes i decided to try something else.
Not planning on making how-to video’s so it’s just me telling what kept me busy this weekend and also try to get a bit more comfortable on camera.

This time i had some work on Sporherre because is needed new tyres and had some work on the brakes.
I don’t understand what happened with brake disks or rotors depending on the country or region, not sure but i know both names are correct just not where de differences come from. I always use Ferodo pads and never had to change the rotors on my VTEC but had them changed on Ragnarok and the ones on Sporherre are shot even faster.
The VTEC was totalled at 114k km and Ragnarok needed new rotors at 88k km but the ones on Sporherre already showing serious signs of wear at 27k km.

For now i put back the pads in front that came off when i put a fresh set on at the start of the ScanBaltic trip. That buys me time to figure out what i want to do but i’m thinking about a one disk conversion with a rear ABS delete.
At this moment with both sides needed to be changed it’s just a little more expensive at this moment but saves money every time i need new pads.
Other plus is the weight saving and this weight counts double as it is unsprung weight.
This is one of those things i normally would not spend money on just to change it but is a big win when you need to change the parts anyway so i guess you already know that i’m fooling myself when i say i’m thinking about it…

I thought the rear pads where worn but they’re the same as the old ones that came off and can stay until the rotor change together with the front.
What i did do front and rear was change the brake fluid for the DOT4 Racing. In Episode 1 of the ScanBaltic series i mentioned losing my rear brake on the Lysevegen serpentine road.
I had the same with Ragnarok in the south of Italy after Michel and i split up. I already ran DOT5.1 on his brakes and changed it to DOT4 Racing and never had it again so that’s what went in Sporherre’s brakes too.
This was also a regular service item just done with a better product. It’s about 3 to 4 times more expensive as the normal DOT4 but still way cheaper than crashing the bike.

Then off course the tyres, the old and new front and rear.

And off course the video, let me know what you think of this kind of content.

I had Sporherre done… or was that an illusion?

Yes i said he was finished and as perfect as he could be.
But then there came a fix for something that wasn’t perfect that was not even in the making when i said that.
It was quite an annoying imperfection so when there was a fix presented by an engineer and producer of ADV products who also rides a T7 i just couldn’t resist.
The brake pedal was called “spongy” by a lot and other said the rear brake was not working at all.
The brake did work and was not spongy but the problem was that the travel was too long making it seem spongy or not working because you just should not flex a foot that far.

@CamelADV made “the fix” and i already had the one finger clutch from them and when i’m at it i just ordered the footpegs too.
The OEM footpegs weren’t that bad, not perfect but good enough to resist buying something better until now.

Rally-motor.nl is the Camel ADV in the Netherlands and i now discovered they where located in Maasbracht where i lived for 16 years and still work so i ordered these parts and said i will pick it up saving the postal costs.
Friday i got an e-mail that the package was ready for shipping??? When i mailed Wouter from RM he said he was away a lot next week so he shipped it free of charge so i will have it soon as possible (it was delayed already).
Great parcel company… not. It supposed to be here the next day but in the app it said it was planned for Tuesday evening.
Not a problem because i was going away Saturday afternoon until Sunday. This morning i did see a mail but thought it was the mail from Friday i left as unread and when i got home on the laptop i noticed it was a new mail saying the parcel was for delivery today (Sunday) and that timeslot was just started at that moment and at 15:00h it arrived.

Next week i need to change the tyres and i was planning to take this on at the same time but i decided to do it right away. It was too early to start with diner and too late to start some editing and it seemed like a easy job.
It was and just a bit over an hour later i was back on the couch and this is the result.

The Camel ADV footpegs are not bigger like most people opt when upgrading but my reason was grip and the weight loss is i nice bonus.
Here in the Netherlands the muddy season can be quite long and slipping off the footpeg is not what you want. A bigger footpeg may be more comfortable when standing for long distances but it also can be in the way when you need to put your foot down unplanned.
The only upgrade i now can think of is changing the brake fluid from OEM DOT4 to DOT4 racing but that is a regular maintenance item that is needed in the near future.
Tomorrow is test day, on the way to work road test and the way home offroad test… in the dark.
Next weekend tyres and planning for the Christmas Truckrun but i hope to finally get another episode of the ScanBaltic trip in but no promises.