Friday, November 16, 2012

Still Looking at the How's and Market for a Small Motorcycle Camp

This past week we had another burp in the road. A bit of mechanical failure that turned out to be a lot lighter than it first appeared. That's the good news for me and I'm not complaining.

But... it got me back to thinking some more about being on the road... in new country... and be kind of left Twisting in the Wind... if/when you break down.

With our rig we aren't so bad off. We just kick out the slide and kick back while we figure out how to achieve repairs. If you're on a bike, with nothing but your wallet and/or a tent... such a situation could get awful unpleasant I'm sure.

So that got factored into my thinking as well...

We need another diversified if frugal/small stream of income... and I'd like to create a place that would be a "destination" of sorts, or maybe a Road House for those who think that way, along the way for Motorcycle touring riders and even weekend rides to escape town for just a bit.

I really like the idea of a small motorcycle oriented camp. Maybe a half dozen of those tiny lil' sleeping cabins, like at KOA and maybe a half dozen or dozen good planned out and leveled tent sites.

A fine ramada set up with BBQ, propane burners and a sink for cleanup in a community type kitchen area. As well as a good fireplace/pit for motorcycle socializing in the evenings.

There'd have to be some sort of outhouses and shower/bath facility, I expect in a gender split arrangement to give the ladies a lil' better privacy. ;)

I'm wanting a Rustic sort of layout/design... Not something with silk sheets and waiters with napkins hung on their arms. :)

I also envision some sort of a shop setup with a lift or two, tools, compressor and maybe some maintenance supplies like oil and such.

It's a pretty vision I've got floating in my head... Though the cost I see doesn't add up to an absolute fortune; The fly in the ointment is, right at this moment, anything is a dollar more than I have. Ha ha!

The "other" bug in the deal is finding THAT piece of ground that would be THE place to make it all work.

It'd have to be a location... reasonably close to the pavement. I expect road bikers aren't going to want to be making long treks over muddy roads to access their motorcycle touring night camp!

It would also be a BIG plus if it sat at or near the intersection of Several, day ride Loops; and not so far from a major, thru road commonly traveled by motorcycle touring riders; as well as a selection of backroads and trails to keep the dual sport riders happy.

Not being TOO picky am I? :)

I'm thinking somewhere within in a triangle of Prescott, Camp Verde and Ash Fork down in Arizona.
In that golden triangle is the potential for a year round operation.

Those riders seeking respite from the heat of the summer low lands would have a place to go... and the hardier souls that ride all winter would have a place to set up for night camps... in a location that would be pleasant, at least in the softer, warmer, winter weather of that area... compared to say, Colorado or Montana! ;)

If I can blunder into a good spot at a price a poor boy can choke down and a seller willing to work with a guy... and just a mite of other luck along the way... I just might could get this idea/dream out of my head and onto the dirt!

Till then I'll just keep on schemin', riding, and dreaming...

Grab Your Handles and Ride!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Getting Lazy About Motorcycle Maintenance...

... is a fault that will catch up with you... guaranteed!

Sometimes, if you're careless, or Lazy... stupidity will hunt you down. Exercise those traits on any motorcycle let alone a performance sort of machine and you compound the impact... juuuuuuuust a mite. That pretty much makes it self inflicted stupidity...

Reach back with your good foot... and kick yourself in the kiester!

I unloaded the bike at Phoenix International Raceway Sunday afternoon after we pulled in and got set up. We work the November and March NASCAR races here to add a few dollars to our emaciated wallet. :)

Monday Morning I climbed on the Raider to ride into town after some parts and run a few errands and... made excuses, 'cause it was Hot! for not making all the usual pre-ride checks.

Ker-rap!! The scooter handled like a slug. "Geeze" I thought. "I know the fork seals are getting bad, but damn! could that make the bike handle this gawd awful heavy and sluggish?"

I mean, after all the miles she and I have shared...I almost didn't recognize her! Sonja was acting like a step child strung out on meth. Spastic as hell!

Well... I'd guess you can't blame the leaky forks... How-some-ever... if you're too lazy/stupid to check the tires a lil' closer, you CAN blame that!... and you'll miss the fact that the Good Avon rubber that's supposed to be inflated to 41 lbs of air was only holding 12!!! Twelve freaking pounds! and 29 lbs of air... lost in a week! ??

Now... I have no idea where/how that air went since I rode the bike over to Escalante in Utah. Or, how BOTH tires suddenly lost the exact same amount. Makes a cynic like me a lil' suspicious... but really... It's hard for me to believe that somebody fooled with the scoot, loaded on the truck while we were getting groceries in Walmart. That's the only time she was out of sight.

But it's still weird to me. Where did that air go to?

Funny though, how she went right back to her usual awesome self once I replaced the missing air... ;) DOH!

It's as weird as the "missing oil" episode after that oil change up in Montana a year or so ago. 3/8 of a quart Gone twice, in just a couple hundred miles for each loss; but zero leaks, no smoke and no residue... and then just stopped disappearing...

Makes me start lookin' around for gremlins! or maybe Irish pranksters named Murphy? Just weird to me.

Old Timers syndrome is a possibility I don't want to entertain or chew on for even a minute!

The lesson is; don't get lazy on your maintenance and checks... Just 'cause it's been correct and proper the last 658 times you checked 'em don't mean the air/oil/whatever is ALWAYS gonna be right... and that time you make excuses and don't check... is the time it'll bite you. Weird or not.

Grab Your Handles and Ride