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Prepping for a long trip

Discussion in 'Motorcycle Talk' started by SivartR1, May 19, 2012.

  1. I'm planning a ride down to California to visit with some friends and relatives, looking advice on gearing up for ~2000 miles over a week. Right now, my list is:

    Tires (current are getting worn, will need new by the time I start the trip anyway)
    Tank Bag
    Grips (thinking some gel grips for a little more comfort)
    Seat (already emailed Dan)

    I'll be shipping clothes down, so I don't have to try to pack a weeks worth in backpack and tank bag, or look at picking up saddlebags.
  2. Camelback thing or other way to hydrate.
    Half a dozen ensures or at least a couple.
    Extra cell phone battery.
    If you have a smart phone, dl a gps tracking program that can be viewed via internet and give someone the log in stuff.
    Zip ties!
    A flashlight.
    A sharp pocketknife.
    Electrical tape.
    A map.
    A bag of trail mix.
    Extra socks.

  3. throttle lock or cramp buster is a must. carry a few common tools for the bike such as hexes, sockets, wrench, pliers. etc.
  4. Saddle bags will make your life a lot easier.
    A throttle rocker/crampbuster thing would be nice too on that long a trip.
  5. dizzle

    dizzle WHO is DANE?

    Advil and Vicodin .. Your back is gonna hurt.

    If you're an OCD planner like myself, plan all your hotels and stop on the way down. Make sure your bike is fully insured to ensure that you're covered in case you don't secure it enough at a hotel.

    If your rear sets are adjustable, place them in the most relaxed position possible as well.

    FYI, I'm speaking out of my ass as I have never done a trip this long, but have read ride reports from guys/gals who have done long trips like this and took notes on what they did and wish they did prior to the trip.
  6. dizzle

    dizzle WHO is DANE?

    Hardwire a charger for your phone in the tail section so that your phone is always charged if you plan on running a gps tracking thing.
  7. Insurance on bike. Credit card with room for the rare unexpected event.

  8. Ear plugs. Stay hydrated, get off and stretch.

    Try some riding shorts too, much more comfortable than cotton undies, and wont ride up your ass crack.
    Last edited: May 19, 2012
  9. Plus one on staying hydrated, I drank a full camelback in one 200 mile stretch last week. I had the pans on my bike, so I brought a couple changes of clothes, tire repair stuff, misc tools(including a pocketknife), zip ties, some duct tape, and a flashlight. I have a power socket on the bike that would charge my cellphone.

    Make sure to wear earplugs that fit. Mine didn't fit so well and it was aggravating beyond belief when they'd pop out. The constant noise was he most fatiguing part of the trip apart from the throttle hand.

    If you cant get the seat done in time look into an airhawk.

    Edit: bottle of aleve was along for the ride, too.
  10. Not to be a downer. But on top of all the comfort shiza. Make sure you have a bag with all the shit would want if you were trapped at the bottom of some ditch with no way out. Trail mix, water, water, water, aaaannd water. The GPS app is a great idea, whoever you give that info to, maybe make a call plan. Check in say twice a day, if you miss a check in they can look up ur GPS info, spam call you etc etc until the search party is called.

    I air on the safe side when taking long trips alone.
  11. Lone Rider

    Lone Rider Streetfighter

    They make bar risers for the 6 ? Wont need 1/2 the aspirin if they do. Everybody covered most of what I do. I found great deals on rooms in those travelers discount guides at rest areas.
    Good route planning is my favorite thing to do. Motorcycle roads not stinkin interstates. Cool places to stop etc.
  12. dscott3509

    dscott3509 Parts Collector

    Some cash, just in case you're somewhere and the card is not working.
  13. Are you planning on slabbing it down I-5 or taking a more scenic route?

    How many miles are you planning to ride per day?

    My motto when logging high-mileage days is the more miles in the rear-view mirror by noon, the more enjoyable the 2nd half of the day....and it's always proven true.

    Get off the bike at least every 2 hours and walk, stretch and hydrate...wait too long for rest stops early in the day and you'll pay for it the rest of the day.

    If you have room for a set of gummy worms and a compact pump, I'd pack them. Along with basic tools...for instance, on my ST1100...I can do almost everything with only a 10mm socket, 5mm allen, 14mm box-end, and the OEM 17mm wrench for the rear axle nut and a phillips screwdriver.

    You'd be fine with a tank bag and rear seat bag. I personally can't stand riding with a backpack...let alone riding all day with one. Something like THIS would work.

    The above recommendations of a throttle lock are right-on. They're cheap and make life easier on the freeway. NEP or Vista...I've had both....both work fine. Throttlemeister if you have money to burn.

    Dress in layers. Might be cool in the mornings for the first couple of hours.

    Small spray bottle of water and towel in ziplock bag to clean your faceshield.

    Have fun!
  14. call your bank to let them know your on the road i did a trip like that and kept stopping for gas and the bank locked my debit card all it took was a call to fix it but still a pain
  15. Cycling arm warmers are my secret weapon. Put em on in the morning, then whip them off when it warms up.

    A bunch of ear plugs, or good ear buds for music.

    Get AAA w/RV upgrade.

    I prefer to just stop wherever I stop and get a motel there. If you get a bunch of reservations, you'll feel like you NEED to get somewhere by the end of the day. I like my rides to be more casual.

    Don't bring too much food/water. Plenty of places to stop on the way.

    Get AAA w/RV upgrade.

  16. credit card, $400 cash, cell phone (optional), mesh gear (if you wear gear), big tank bag or rear bags, cap,
    change of footwear. Assuming during hot months. Plan on early start to day, like 1/2 hr before dawn.
    Stop when fatigued and use motel pool to relax.

    Consider AAA "Premier RV" membership which covers M/C's, 200 mile tow distances, free gas delivery if run out, and trip interruption insurance.
    costs about $150/yr. and covers any car you happen to be riding in, too. also gets you free paper maps.
    I have it; works.

    Basically you can over prepare for things like this. Just go and have a blast.
    Focus on comfort things. Buy dual compound sport-touring tires, any brand, and you'll be tire happy.

    I use the cramp-buster slip on throttle control to ease wrist and forearm fatigue: $13.
    wide version for me, but whatever.
  17. A tire patch kit and CO2 powered air
    Baby wipes... good for your hands, brow and ass
    Think about whether you want a clear shield if you're gonna ride at all at night
    Spare fuses
    Duct tape
  18. Thanks for the suggestions. I'll be using this as a checklist when packing up, and in prepping the bike. The plan at this point (still a bit out, but I tend to over-analyze, and over-plan) is to slab it down I-5 to about half way, and meet my dad coming up from NoCal, then for day 2 the two of us ride the rest of the way to his place.

    Should be about 400 miles each day. As for backpack, I commute with the backpack, and am so used to it that I feel strange riding without it now. Going to have to look into a camelback option that I can use with the current pack, or that I can put in the (to be purchased still) tank bag.
  19. I'm bailing out to for a five day 2500 mile trip on thursday . I just wired in a power plug for charging stuff and running my radar. I bought it a Fred Meyer and then went to the auto parts store for a fuse block/terminal. 18 bucks total.


    Take some wet wipes for your face and hands. A roll of asswipe is handy and some 13 gallon garbage bags to keep your stuff dry. +1 on the others above.
    Last edited: May 20, 2012
  20. Lone Rider

    Lone Rider Streetfighter

    Get one of them slip on finger squeegie things if your gloves dont have them...,just in case you have to deal with tire spray on Interstates (It sucks bad going by big rigs, RV's, 4x4s etc.)
    The plug in and radar detector is a great deal for the slab...,also phone recharging.

    Baby wipes mmmmm, clean quick if doing mechanicals and eases monkeybutt.

    Slabbin yuck.
    Think about catch 22 out of Salem to 20 to US 97 and enjoy Oregon.
    Or 58 below Eugene to 97. (Actually a better route I used to run truckin
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