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The Non-Ride From Hade....In Progress


bmweerman

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Moderator...I'm not sure if this belongs in Ride Tales or Wrenching...Please move if inappropriate

 

 

7.10.06

 

The ride started out great. We had a double magazine assignment and a couple weeks off of work. To make our schedule though we had to ride from Bakersfield to almost the Oregon border in one day…600+ miles…no big deal have done it before.

 

The ride proceeds nicely until just short of Redding Ca. My wife and Pillion, Patti, usually the trooper of troopers signals me urgently to stop at the upcoming rest stop.

A good idea actually as I had been feeling the bike being not quite right for a number of miles. She gets off the bike and when she takes off her helmet I see that she is shaking and weeping. A combination of too much caffeine, not sleeping well the night before and just plain fatigue. I was obviously upset and fatigued too because when I went to put the RT on the center stand I tipped her over. She went down on her right side and and when we picked her up found the drivers peg broken off. Not Good. Redding was only a few miles away but it was getting late. We jumped on the bike and I managed to drive her in with my heel on the peg stump.

 

Stopped on the outskirts of town to inquire about a bike shop. Got some vague directions and finally managed to find the Harley dealer….Closed. We rode down the street and Patti spotted a Cycle Gear. Perfect. Tricky entrance thought and ended up back on the freeway.

 

 

After finding a place to turn around and getting headed back in the right direction, before we even get to Cycle Gear we spay a KTM/Adventure bike shop. Perfect, they should have a little bit of everything, right? Closed on Monday! Damn. Back out on the main street, and with a lot of help from Patti we get manourverd throught what is now Rush hour traffic on a main drag back to Cycle Gear…. Open, perfect and a nice big one.

A very amenable young man at the front desk listened to our story only to inform us thathe had “sold his last set of highway pegs yesterday, however he could call around the shops.” Good. The calling turns out to be of little value as most of the shops are closed on Mon. That left us with one final option, , the Honda shop.

 

Mercifully open on Monday and until 6 which was particularly important because we are now fighting impatient, home bound, traffic every step of the way. Make it to the Honda dealer. And, again, greeted by a most amenable young man at the parts counter who most regretfully informed us that he just didn’t have any pegs. When pressed he agreed to go to the back room and look in what he called “Honda Stock.” For something.

 

He’s gone for a while, so leaning as calmly against the parts counter as I can to wait, I notice Patti off in some dark corner of the shop rooting around for something.

 

The young man comes back with a peg that looks very much like it will work, Albeit awkwardly. Together we stroll back out into the merciless sun to check out the bike.

The peg initially looks like it will work just fine. Next task, get the remaining piece of peg out of the beemer. This turns out to be quite the task as the fall had bent the peg quite badly. After making several trips back to the shop area for various tools the pin finally gives up its grip, only to discover that it was one of those, close, but no Cigar moments.

 

As this young man and I sat there among our tools and broken beemer parts more or less pointlessly scratching our heads Patti shows up with a purple blister package containing a very shiny pair of chrome, Victory brand highway pegs.

 

The young man in question was very surprised to see them, but Patti in her usual detailed and systematic manner had searched the store and found them abandonded on a dusty shelf somewhere.

 

They fit almost perfectly with the pin alignment just slightly out. The boys in the shop made short work of that problem with a slightly smaller bolt and a couple of washers.

 

Good Work.

 

Still hot as hell and apparently, at least to us getting more humid.

A retreat into Denny’s across the street brought much relief and we mounted Black Beauty for the final 45 miles into McCloud. After a days ride of over 500 miles up the length of the great valley some real motorcycling at last. Redding is basically at the bottom of the ascent up to Mt. Shasta. Interstate 5 turns from a soulless slab at last into a real motorcycle road. At the beginning of the ascent is Shasta Lake. Shasta Lake has a fractal-like shape with many long fingers extending for miles. This makes for a lot of bridges and many great views. A visual feast of a ride with great twisties thrown in for good measure.

 

The bike is not right though, something is catching and grinding. Power is still being transferred without interruption to the rear wheel, but I can tell. A turn off of Interstate five onto highway 89 quickly deposits us at our destination. Finally able to unload the heavy pannier bags and trunk the bike can be center-standed and the rear wheel raised for examination. One thing is immediately apparent rear brakes are metal to metal. Not sure if this is because the tech who changed the rear tire just before we left did not properly torque the calipers or because I rode the brakes while riding on a peg stump or a combination of factors. Unfortunately in the attenuated tool kit I brought on this trip I did not have a large enough hex tool to remove the calipers so it is impossible to tell at this point if the grind is just brakes or if, God Forbid, another rear drive is failing.

 

7.11.2006

 

Slept soundly until about 3 O’clock then began writing.

 

Went out at dawn and shot some picutures of Mt. Shasta. Magnificent.

 

At 6 AM the Chevron across the street opened and I found out that there is a hardware store nearby where I may be able to get the appropriate tool. Also found out there is no wireless service in town, the nearest being in the town of Mt. Shasta. Am going to need the wireless to track down the non OEM part equivalents for the brake pads. Keeping this on a spiritual level though God reminded me of the words of the Tao Te Ching.

 

The three great treasures are Patience, Simplicity and Compassion.

 

It seems to me the best way to practice those principles right now is to wait until the hardware store opens at eight and see if I can get the tool. Once I have the calipers off I can know more accurately what I am dealing with.

 

Rode to the hardware store, a general store really and in name. This is the kind of place where contractors start taking materials and loading their trucks before the owners arrive if the owners are later. The kind of store that has a Christmas section set up full-time and has a rack full of books about fishing comedy, but no eight millimeter wrenches. Come back to the hotel just to let Patti know I’m going to risk the ten miles or so into Shasta City for a wrench. Got suited up and ready to go but when I got back to the back I knew the worst case scenario was upon us. A thick stream of green-black fluind had run over the bottom of the rear wheel and tire and left a sickening looking pool of expesive muck on the pink brick work. Catostrophic final drive failure again!

 

There is no wiggle room in such a case, only one basic decision to be made. How am I going to change this and where am I going to get the parts. The where factor was exacerbated by the lack of internet service. I rely on copies of emails to keep my contact information and history with people in. But all this extensive data is rendered unavailable with not internet connection.

 

There was also a lot of internal debate about whether to buy a new final or another used one and Boomer and I had the discussion about the systemic nature of this problem. No real conclusions to draw there and really not even any particulary useful speculation on either of our parts.

 

A flurry of phone calls to get numbers then more phone calls began to net results, in fact, God or Providence or whatever you may care to call it was with us because the parts began to fall in line at the right price. Patti roused the owners of the inn, which is technically closed on tues and got us another nights stay…turns out stay 2 get one free so that worked out perfectly.

 

Now all these parts are coming but what to do with them…replacing the final drive in an oilhead is not a particularly long job or hard job but it is a Big Job. Even thought I didn’t think it was going to work, I called someone out of the BMW Anonymous Book.

 

The call was successful and Lee turned out to be a mechanic with a lift and tools.

Perfect.

Called around and found low mileage final drive which was shipped to the hotel next day as promised.

 

Good as his word Lee showed up the next with jeep and trailer and we hauled “Black” to his garage about 20 miles away. Got the bike up on the lift removed rear tire, then first of many roadblocks of the day. Lee has every imaginable tool in his garage…he’s an electrician…except and 12 mm hex tool to remove the carriage bolts. Much frustration ensues until we finally take a half inch allen wrench and carefully grind it down.

 

Long story short…disaster

 

Outer carrier bearing destroyed…driveling fused

 

Back to hotel

 

Two more days and bearing and Driveline delivered

 

Lee makes the trip to pick us up with high hopes

 

Now…brake disc screws fused …no amout of heat will break then loose…eventually end up stripping them.

 

In the meantime Lee discovers new bearing defective.

 

I’m frustrated and I can tell my new friend is losing patience. (who could blame him)

 

Plus he had to leave for the weekend to race his car.

 

As things stand right now have found another BMWMOA member who will let me use garage when tools and parts arrive on Tuesday

 

Really need to save this ride because we really need the magazine money now since we’re down a grand on parts not to mention hotel rooms.

 

Not cryin’ just reporting.

 

Will keep y’all posted.

 

Cameron and Patti out….

 

 

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Dances_With_Wiener_Dogs

Bad news! Hopefully this will work out for you.

Went out at dawn and shot some picutures of Mt. Shasta. Magnificent.

Umm, have any photos to share? smile.gif

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Man that is a tough story.....

 

I'm in Seattle area if you need help and a lift up here.

 

The 12 MM hex socket is a tough one to find stocked anywhere. The cut down allen wrench is the best way to go (been there done that!).

 

Best of luck!

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You have all the luck, ,,,,, , mostly bad!

 

bncry.gifbncry.gifbncry.gif

 

You know Stan it's my own damn fault. Every time something happens I learn more and more and figure out where things went wrong. In this case when the final was replaced last time i should have replaced the drive shaft too because the spline interface between the drive shaft and U joint was real sticky and hard to put back together. When we pulled it out this time the two were actually fused! And, those tapered bearings should have been replaced too. In fact I think you mentioned they looked a little shaky when you were over. Hard to tell what chain of events took out the system...probably a combination. What came first spline failure or bearing failure...chicken and egg I guess.

 

Still my fault either way. But I'm replacing the whole system this time...using a salvage drive again and salvage driveline with about 10k on them...but I bought NEW bearings this time.

 

Got my book and have the right tools coming...will put it back together to speck ONE MORE TIME...if this doesn't last a LONG time though I'm buying a Honda...as much as a love my RT.

 

Take care Stan and hope your SO comes home soon!

 

Cameron

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Man that is a tough story.....

 

I'm in Seattle area if you need help and a lift up here.

 

The 12 MM hex socket is a tough one to find stocked anywhere. The cut down allen wrench is the best way to go (been there done that!).

 

Best of luck!

 

That's a really, really kind offer ...thanks!

 

Hopefully I won't have to take you up on it, but wow...cool people here!

 

Cameron

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Stan Walker

Take care Stan and hope your SO comes home soon

She's home. Oops, power just went down..... guess I should get off the computer.

 

Stan

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Take care Stan and hope your SO comes home soon

She's home. Oops, power just went down..... guess I should get off the computer.

 

Stan

 

 

Most excellent news my friend! clap.gifthumbsup.gif

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AdventurePoser

You are handling this adversity with amazing aplomb. Kudos to you and your wife.

 

Me? I'd be a blubbering lump of jelly... thumbsup.gif

 

STeve

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You are handling this adversity with amazing aplomb. Kudos to you and your wife.

 

Me? I'd be a blubbering lump of jelly... thumbsup.gif

 

STeve

 

Thanks for the encouragement!

 

Things are looking up...have gotten a couple of PMs from people in the area and the bike goes to Rich M's garage tommorow...A real "wrench" and all the right tools....should be back on the road tommorow and looks like we'll save this trip after all.

 

Couldn't do it thought without my partner...Patti is a rock and an amazing and calm friend.

 

Thanks again...and thanks to ALL...this board is really an amazing place!

 

Cameron and Patti

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AdventurePoser

I'm glad you posted this thread. I agree that keeping calm is probably the first order of business. And the value of a supportive co rider is not to be underestimated.

 

For us, being non wrench people, the thought of being stranded in the boondocks with a catastrophic repair problem is a scary one. BMW dealerships aren't exactly in every small town are they? dopeslap.gif

 

In the meantime, my RT continues to sail along. So far, so good. Two broken speedo cables in 87,000 miles is it so far...I'm hoping my theory of scrupulous maintenance will help me avoid an "adventure" like yours!

 

Thanks for posting!

 

Steve in So Cal

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Just a quicke update.

 

The rest of the parts should be here today and Rich M will be here with the trailer to move the bike.

 

Hopefully back on the road this evening.

 

Will keep you posted

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I'm glad you posted this thread. I agree that keeping calm is probably the first order of business. And the value of a supportive co rider is not to be underestimated.

 

For us, being non wrench people, the thought of being stranded in the boondocks with a catastrophic repair problem is a scary one. BMW dealerships aren't exactly in every small town are they? dopeslap.gif

 

In the meantime, my RT continues to sail along. So far, so good. Two broken speedo cables in 87,000 miles is it so far...I'm hoping my theory of scrupulous maintenance will help me avoid an "adventure" like yours!

 

Thanks for posting!

 

Steve in So Cal

 

Thank you!

 

And just in case anyone wants even more details...there's a complete journal report on our website

 

www.leatherandlaptop.org/index.html

 

click on travel stories

 

Here's to your RT never failing thumbsup.gif

 

Cameron

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Wow. Good luck. I'm getting to the point where I cringe every time I hear the words "final" and "drive" used in the same sentence.

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Minor hijack.....

Did anyone see the article in the OTL this month regarding final drive failures. The author (don't recall his name), suggests that improper shimming when the rear drive was assembled is possibly to blame. He also raises a question about why most bearing replacement instructions say to leave the shims alone and just replace the bearing.

I have almost 10k since my RD failure last fall. So far everything is ok. I fully understand your frustration with a second failure. I think I would also look beyond just another bearing replacement if it happened to me.

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