Now back in Florida, the plan is to get some R&R and continue preparing for Mexico, Central America and South America. I’ve got about 3 weeks to see all my friends/family and do lots of work on the bike. My planned departure date from Florida is around September 25th and crossing over into Mexico on October 1st.
While in Tampa, I was able to meet up with some other travelers who had just returned from their trips.
Tyler, on the right, just returned from riding his motorcycle through the lower 48 states over the last 2 months. Lots of good stories from his journey. Check out his photos/story here: Around the Country in 48 States
James and Lauren are in the middle of their South America tour in their Toyota 4-runner. They’ve been on the road for nearly 1.5 years and are back in Florida to save up some more money before flying back to Uruguay to pick up their truck and continue their journey into Brazil. I was able to glean a lot of useful info from James about what to expect on my upcoming travels. Check out their blog here: HomeontheHighway.com
Awesome to have met you guys!
Planned maintenance/modifications on the bike before departure:
- A new seat! The OEM low seat leaves me damn near crippled at the end of the day. I’m thinking about riding up to Sargent Cycle in Jacksonville and having them build me a new seat.
- Normal maintenance: Oil change, air filter clean/oil, lube cables, check/tighten head bearing, etc
- New chain and sprockets. I just had a new chain/sprockets installed before this trip (under factory recall warranty, so free!). However, my chain is starting to bind up in a few links and make some noise. :x: Doesn’t matter if I clean and re lube it, the binding doesn’t go away..
- Replace my leaking fork seal. Like the chain, I just replaced my fork seals this past winter, so I was a bit surprised to see it leaking. To be fair, the bike has ridden a lot of dirt roads this year which increases wear on the seals.
- Replace my bent pannier rack and stripped rivet nut in the sub-frame.
- Re-wire some electronics such as the tank bag and DeLorme GPS tracker.
- Install new brake pads
- Have the ECU remapped for low octane. BMW calls this the ‘Rest of World fuel map’. I think it’ll be necessary for riding in some parts of Central and South America where low octane petrol is all that’s available.
- and more stuff I’m forgetting 😕
Other pre-trip tasks to complete:
- Finish assembling all the necessary paperwork for crossing border. Making copies, laminate documents, etc
- Purchase moto insurance for Mexico.
- Purchase health/travel insurance
- Re-pack and prioritize (AKA eliminate) some of my gear
- Download and install my GPS maps for Mexico
- Organize my finances a bit more so they’re self-sufficient