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Old 17 Aug 2005
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Shipping via the Caribbean

So i am going to have my '98 f650 strapped to a mast of a sailing yacht and shipped from panama to Colombia. It will be wrapped in plastic but what other precautions should I take to make sure it does not turn into a pile of rust? i.e. What important components should I slather in oil (or something else) for protection.

and does anyone have information on some of the yachts sailing this route? I have only heard that captain Mark (the melody) is great (but he set sail this morning) and i should avoid some guy named Dennis. I have searched the HUBB and can't find any more information.

I am in contact with a captain named Guido (sy "seeandler"), anybody have any experances with him?

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Old 19 Aug 2005
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found a thread

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Old 21 Aug 2005
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Hi there, we shipped our bike with Mark on the Melody about a month ago. He was really good and everything went smoothly. I can´t vouch for any of the other boats doing the trip but be careful. Disaster Dennis - as he is known is not a good optionm from what I hear. Can´t talk from first hand experiance though so this may be unfair.

As for precautions with the bike THE SEA WILL EAT YOUR BIKE ALIVE IF YOU DON¨T PRESURE WASH IT AS SOON AS YOU REACH LAND! I have an AT and couldn´t get it cleaned as soon as I wouyld have liked. The rust soon showed up. It was easy to sort out a week later but the sea will find its way into all those shiney bits. My advice would be to get 2 large tarps and warp the bike in both. Do the underside first and then the top of the bike so sea water runs off as doesn´t collect in the bottom tarp as a swimmiing pool. Don´t oil the bike as it will run off onto the deck which will really upset the captain and make it slippery for everyone. Not safe in high seas (and they can be!) Make sure you remove the mirrors and windshield too incase the wind picks up. Only other thing is to get some polystiryn or similer to put against the tank or fairing so the bike doesn´t rub against the mast (which its tied to). As far as the bike being on the boat goes thats all you need to worry about really. However.........

note that none of the boats sailing to colombia are registerd for carrying bikes so when you reach colombia its a little ¨back door¨! Don´t worry we didn´t have any problems getting the bike in (apart from the agent trying to rip us off but that was just one oif those things). You´ll have to unload the bike in the early hours as you will not have the papers yet. Its not a problem though.

Hope this helps and have a good trip. The San Blas islansa are great!

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Old 21 Aug 2005
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hey chris how did you clear customs in panama? I'll be leaving from portobelo and getting panama imagragion exit stamp in san blas. Are there customs in san blas? or should i do that in colon first? I'll be the first motocycle this captain has transported so he dosen't know all the answers.


[This message has been edited by saker (edited 20 August 2005).]
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Old 22 Aug 2005
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Location: After almost 2 years on the road back in Germany
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Hi, just want to let you know that there were 3 germans and an austrian guy who shipped with Dennis end of May. They survived, although they said that it took about 9 days instead of 6 because there were some problems with the boat.
good luck

P.S: you can write an email to Heiko who has answered on my thread under http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/ubb...ML/000087.html

he has been on that boat!
Martin and Katja Wickert
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Old 22 Aug 2005
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We didn´t clear customs full stop because we were not planning to go back to Panama in the near furture. Its not a big problem there. We got our passports stamped in the San Bla Islands on the crossing which was the only point we needed to worry about.

If you are planning to take your bike back to Panama in the near future it may be something you will need to look into - otherwise don´t worry about it.

Note that Colon is a Sh.. hole. You´ll be lucky to make it out of there with your balls if you go there let alone the bike.

The bigger consideration is getting the bike cleared in Customs at the Colombia end. I take it you´re going to Cartagena? If so call in at Club Nortica and ask around for agents who havfe experiance of clearing bikes. The other consideration is that your boat/captain will not have a licence for carrying cargo. Its not a big deal but you will need to make sure you don´t mention HIS boat when at customs to avoiud any complications. You will need to unload the boat in the early hour to avoid the police too. Look into unloading at the Shell Station where the boats get there gas. Its easy to get to a hotle from there quickly. All this sounds scarey but it isn´t really a big deal - its just the way it is.

Finally - DO use an agent to clear the bike as its a hastle if you don´t know the ropes but be careful about how much you are goiung to pay. We had an argument with our agnet as we agreed $15 US but at the end of the day he demanded $50. We didn´t even pay the $15 but that´s another storey. Just be careful. Non of thisd is a big deal so don´t worry. We were as nervous as hell but all was fine.

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