The day after visiting the cargo area:
"Hello, is that Bradley?"
"It's Ken here."
"I came in yesterday to have my TTR weighed and measured for London. 223kg."
"That's right. I've booked my ticket now, back to London. For 27th October."
Posted by Ken Thomas at October 07, 2010 02:30 PM GMT
"When do you want me to bring the bike in for crating?"
"OK. See you on the 26th. Bye."
So there you have it. Journey's end will be 27th October - arriving Heathrow the following morning.
Now, where's that owner's handbook? This is the first time H.M. The Bike has ever been on a set of scales.
Let's see - total weight of bike is 124kg. (Including oil and fuel).
Maximum load according to Mr. Yamaha (rider, luggage and accessories) is 90kg.
Add those together, equals 214kg.
The difference between 214kg and 223kg is........ 9kg.
So, that leaves 9kg for the weight of the rider. Errrr, that's me.
No, there must be something wrong there. Work it out some other way.
Weight of rider is......... haven't the faintest. Assume 70kg - lost some weight on this journey, good African food.
So, weight of bike and luggage at the airport cargo area was 223kg.
Weight of rider is 70kg which makes 300kg total more-or-less.
Handbook says maximum weight of bike, rider, oil and fuel, tent, malaria tablets, mosquito net, Eet-Sum-Mor biscuits, spares and tools is 214kg.
Difference - 86kg.
It still doesn't make any sense.
I definitely told that nice policeman in Malawi that all my luggage would only weigh as much as if I was carrying one passenger. After all, motorbikes there carry three adults, one child and the family shopping.
So it must be OK.
It's these kilos. They never work out right. Everything should be in pounds, then it would all be correct.
Look - total distance Whyteleafe to Cape Agulhas has been 19,716 miles.
That's miles not kilometres - and dirt, rocks, corrugations, powder, pot holes, not just tarmac - and nothing's broken (so far). Not a single spoke, elastic luggage strap, nor GPS mounting bracket made from Meccano. Nor any 15mm copper water pipe held on with zip-ties.
So the error must be in the maths for the kilos, not in the loading of the bike. It would all be OK in pounds.
Anyway, the captain of the cargo plane said he'll fly it all to London as soon as I fill his pockets with money, so it must be alright.
That's another thing, how much will his pockets weigh on that flight........? I hope his GPS is fixed in place with Meccano as well. Or H.M. The Bike will end up in Vladivostok.
I stopped off at Caledon on the way to Cape Agulhas. On loading the bike the next morning, for the final stretch to the final destination, I saw this message on top of the headlight:
How can 19,700 miles be a 'short spin'?
Well, in the context of a lifetime, or the world's journey around the Milky Way, maybe it is.
How did this message get there anyway?
The wind blew things around a bit in the night. On top of my headlight I have a lightweight bike cover and a pair of ex-military gaiters (for the rainy season) all rolled up in an orange high-viz vest. Now, here were the washing instructions for the gaiters, on a little label, flapping in the breeze for all to see.
Hold on.... washing instructions? On military gaiters? What's the army coming to anyway?
But, there was the message, placed there somehow. Whether it meant a short spin from Caledon to Agulhas, or from Whyteleafe to Agulhas, maybe one day I'll find out.