The Achievable Dream 5-part series - the definitive guide on DVD for planning your motorcycle adventure. Get Ready! covers planning, paperwork, medical and many other topics! "Inspirational and Awesome!" See the trailer here!
Gear Up! is a 2-DVD set, 6 hours! Which bike is right for me? How do I prepare the bike? What stuff do I need - riding gear, clothing, camping gear, first aid kit, tires, maps and GPS? What don't I need? How do I pack it all in? Lots of opinions from over 150 travellers! "This DVD will save you a fortune!"See the trailer here!
So you've done it - got inspired, planned your trip, packed your stuff and you're on the road! This section is about staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure. And crossing borders, war zones or oceans!
On the Road! is 5.5 hours of the tips and advice you need to cross borders, break down language barriers, overcome culture shock, ship the bike and deal with breakdowns and emergencies."Just makes me want to pack up and go!" See the trailer here!
Tire Changing!Grant demystifies the black art of Tire Changing and Repair to help you STAY on the road! "Very informative and practical." See the trailer here!
Ladies on the Loose! For the first time ever, a motorcycle travel DVD made for women, by women! These intrepid women share their tips to help you plan your own motorcycle adventure. They also answer the women-only questions, and entertain you with amazing tales from the road! Presented by Lois Pryce, veteran solo traveller through South America and Africa and author of 'Lois on the Loose', and 'Red Tape and White Knuckles.'
"It has me all fired up to go out on my own adventure!" See the trailer here!
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Which Bike?Comments and Questions on what is the best bike for YOU, for YOUR trip. Note that we believe that ANY bike will do, so please remember that it's all down to PERSONAL OPINION. Technical Questions for all brands go in their own forum.
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I am starting the trip in South Africa in 2 weeks from now (toward the end of May 09).
I will drive north toward Kenya till let say the end of August. From Kenya I will ship the bike to India (unfortunately with an Israeli passport i can't cross further in Africa ).
I estimate I will be in India at around September till the end of October.
Does it fit your schedule?
To summarize this correspondence that took place 1 year ago:
Finally, I have chosen the Yamaha Tenere 2009 (XT660Z).
After almost 1 year travelling with it I can confidently say that it was an excellent choice.
I wrote some points that reflects my personal experience with it.
Positive Points: 1. It reacts and feels exactly as a Yamaha Tenere single cilinder should. Basically it has the same good & simple engine as previous models but with fuel injection that powers him more. Easy to ride and control on & off road. 2. Not too much electronics comparing to the alternatives - Although the bike has much more electronics than previous versions of the Tenere, it's not too full of it. I guess that those days it is almost impossible to avoid too much electronics in new bikes but in my opinion, the new Tenere has a good balance of it. 3. Easy to fix - as stupid as it was, I ran into a (too) deep river in North Mozambique and got stuck with a damaged Head Gasket . I was fortunate to locate a former Zimbabwean guy who ownes a Marnie Mechanic Shop in Pemba with good Western tools. With the help of the manual and his previous knowledge of bikes he managed to replace it (after 3 weeks of waiting for the Head Gasket to arrive from Germany). If it's the bike or him, who knows... but the result was good so I decided to include that point. 4. Durable - we had 2 rough crushes and few more fallings. It only resulted in a few scratches and front wind shield crucked. In addition, 3 days after the river incident, I was trying to evacuate my self from the village I was stuck at to the closest city, Pemba. Due to previous failure, I took the locals advice and placed the bike, my self and all the gear on a Canoe with which they move scooters from bank to bank in a deeper part of the river. After about 1 minute in the water, the canoe flipped and every thing including the bike was in 2 meters' deep water. The bike spent about 10 minutes in the water until we managed to push it out to the other bank. 9 months later - no electronic problems. 5. 23 liters fiberglass fuel tank (!!) and a fuel consumption of 17-23 km/lt (depending on the style and terrain). 6. Good looking bike!
Negative Points: 1. Chair is not extremely comfortable. It's not that bad but after about 4 or 5 hours of riding the butt starts to attract attention. 2. Awkward access for repairs - for example: in order to replace the Head Gasket, you need to take off almost all the bike - fuel tank, rear wheel and spring & the all engine! Stupid but thats the price for all the addings. 3. It's not a 900 or 990 or 1200 cc and of course a single engine suffers from less power in low RPMs. 4. It's not amphibian
Here are 2 pictures.
All the equipment (including change of exhaust) was purchased from and fitted by Off the Road, Cologne, Germany. I have only good things to say about the equipment's quality and the prices!
Well, I guess that is it.
Good luck whatever you choose.
Thanks for your summary. I did a 20k run to Iran with the same bike and would pretty much agree with you.
One question though. How did it handle lower fuel quality in Africa? What's your take on unleaded with it? You can't really take the catalytic converter out and are looking at an aftermarket or new original for ~ EUR1000 if you happen to blow the cat with unleaded. How did you fare?
Regarding the fuel quality - I must say that I never had problems. I just fueled the bike with whatever petrol was available, mainly from fuel stations and not jerricans. I think that maybe once or twice I really felt that the fuel was a very bad quality one and then the engine sounded "crucks" when exerting. It bacame good again after refueling.
Leaded/Unleaded - I can't tell you exactly what % I fueled with leaded or unleaded cause since you mainly have only 1 type of petrol in each station, I've rarely asked. But if I remember right, I think most of the coutries I've travelled at in Africa are using unleaded fuel those days; not sure though.
To summerize - I've fueled it with whatever fuel was available and never had problems.
1> Yamaha XT600e
2> Suzuki DR650
3> Yamaha XT660Z then X
The reason for the above order is reliability / fixability in "third" world countries
Personally i will be getting the Yamaha XT660Z eventually.
Just Curious, Im looking to buy a new DS soon, and was wondering why the KLR was not a viable option to you? I was debating on the KLR650 or XR650R as I wanna do BAJA and South America, but the XR650R would also allow me to race BAJA down the road which was also a interest of mine. Too many choices eh LOL.
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Horizons Unlimited is not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown what started as a hobby in 1997 into a full time job (usually 8-10 hours per day and 7 days a week) and a labour of love. To keep it going and a roof over our heads, we run events such as this one (18 this year!); we sell inspirational and informative DVDs; we have a few selected advertisers; and we make a small amount from memberships.
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