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Discussion Starter #1
The ride itself was Nashville to Ocean City MD, then Hwy 50 to Sacramento CA and back to Nashville. I went with the understanding "I don't know how many 500 mi days I can string together". As it turns out I managed a total of 1893 mi in 5 days (A strict schedule as working people have to get back to work).

My prep:
Spark plugs: easy and cheap. I thought about Iridiums, but the standard plug works fine and I got the new ones at a local auto part store.

Oil: The first time I've changed my own. Got some of the recommended Shell oil and K&N filter. Not too bad; cleaned the screen also which means getting the exhaust disconnected. My Scrambler has never lost, burnt, or dripped a drop of oil. I've owned a lot of air cooled bikes, and cannot say the same for the others.

Chain: at 12000 mi the original chain had several miles left in it, but I've made a mistake of expecting too much of a chain on a long trip. Installed an EK and a new drive sprocket. Ran perfect and smooth.

I bought an aux 1.75 ga tank and carried extra gas but didn't make it to where lack of services was expected. I didn't weigh the gear, but it wasn't light.

The ride:
It rained 3 days out of 5. Real gushing, standing in the road, cars pulled over rain in Virginia. The Scrambler wasn't phased at all. We only stopped to put on rain gear and then motored through weather as it was. The AV55/AV56 Avon tires never twitched over wet tar snakes and wet washboard pavement in West Virginia and were predictable and competent in all cases. The Scrambler consistently gave 55mpg whether going 5+ on I-40 and I-81 or winding through Maryland and West Virginia back country at a brisk pace.

The ride was great fun, but I knew at the end of a long 500 mi day that I needed rest. The next planned day was 550 mi. The Scrambler would easily do it, but the old man couldn't so I said farewells and headed to the house.
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Discussion Starter #5
An excellent product with a flaw. Rotopax 1.75 ga. The black spout that comes with it never worked; wouldn't open (I tore it apart out of curiosity - rube goldburg). Luckily, I didn't need the gas. Rotopax was not surprised when I contacted them and sent the yellow spout that works at no charge. If I were to order another Rotopax, I'd get the yellow spout even if I had to pay extra.

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Congrats on your trip! A long road trip is always a joy.

There must be a problem with your math or a mixup in what state you mean. Nashville, TN to Sacramento, CA is 2200 miles, so your trip could not have been 1900 miles or less... ?? It would have to have been at least 4400 miles, never mind the side trip to Maryland. That's also about 8 500 mile days if you don't do much else other than just go there and back. Can you clarify?
 

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I didn't do the whole ride.
Oh. So that was a proposed trip plan, but you didn't actually go Nashville TN to Ocean City MD to Sacramento CA and back? Very confusing.
Where did you actually go? And what/where is that "Sacramento Ca" sign?

Don't get me wrong, 1800+ miles is a healthy trip no matter what; it's farther than I've gone on a motorcycle since 2005. I'm just very perplexed by your post now.

thx!
 

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An excellent product with a flaw.
Not a surprise at all. These new style ventless gas cans are absolute garbage . I guarantee it's a case of someone owning the patent on the nozzle and lobbying to make it a requirement. It was really cool of them to send you a replacement.

How Government Wrecked the Gas Can

Also why would you make the trip out and stop when you got to Sac? It's like the left armpit of California...
 

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Discussion Starter #10
The idea was to do all of hwy 50, which ends in Sac. My friend, who planned the ride, did go on to SF before heading east
 

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Ah, now I understand. So if I look at a map and see you went from Nashville, TN, to Ocean City, MD, that's about 800 miles. If you then followed US 50 west and detoured south to return to Nashville in 1800-1900 miles total for the trip, you turned south likely somewhere near Cincinnati, OH after passing through MD, perhaps a little PA, WVA, and your route home included bits of possibly IN and KY before getting you back into TN and Nashville area.

That's a lovely trip!

Long long ago I wandered in some of those areas on my bikes, down the Kentucky Blue Ridge Mountain Parkway and south; another trip took me from Atlanta, GA to Gatlinburg, TN and back via roads whose names I don't remember; and another trip led me from Hendersonville to TN and back on yet a third trip. That last was in about 1999. I loved wandering the US routes off the interstates ... did US 70 halfway across the west on one trip. Fantastic rides, beautiful country, some wonderful people to meet and laugh with. I hope to do these kinds of rides again someday soon, although I somehow doubt I'm going to do it like I often did when I was young and foolish ... there were times in my traveling then that 800-1200 miles in a day would happen. Nowadays, 400-500 miles in a day seems a lot: I want to go slower and look around me more.

Getting my bike all set up for that kinda stuff now... :D
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Ah, now I understand. So if I look at a map and see you went from Nashville, TN, to Ocean City, MD, that's about 800 miles. If you then followed US 50 west and detoured south to return to Nashville in 1800-1900 miles total for the trip, you turned south likely somewhere near Cincinnati, OH after passing through MD, perhaps a little PA, WVA, and your route home included bits of possibly IN and KY before getting you back into TN and Nashville area.

That's a lovely trip!

Long long ago I wandered in some of those areas on my bikes, down the Kentucky Blue Ridge Mountain Parkway and south; another trip took me from Atlanta, GA to Gatlinburg, TN and back via roads whose names I don't remember; and another trip led me from Hendersonville to TN and back on yet a third trip. That last was in about 1999. I loved wandering the US routes off the interstates ... did US 70 halfway across the west on one trip. Fantastic rides, beautiful country, some wonderful people to meet and laugh with. I hope to do these kinds of rides again someday soon, although I somehow doubt I'm going to do it like I often did when I was young and foolish ... there were times in my traveling then that 800-1200 miles in a day would happen. Nowadays, 400-500 miles in a day seems a lot: I want to go slower and look around me more.

Getting my bike all set up for that kinda stuff now... :D
It was a lot of fun (last day I didn't get my eTrex10 reset and didn't get the whole track recorded; headed home at Seymour IN):

http://www.artvilla.com/andy/Hwy502017/tracks.pdf
 

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Really interested in your bike prep and performance. I have a 2015 scrambler and i am working towards a major round the country trip (35 days). Any problems with the bike (even little stuff)? Any modifications to stock? Did you do any dirt roads? If you had to change the bike in any way what would you do?
 

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Discussion Starter #14
My bike is bone stock.
  • HepcoBecker tail rack that helps a lot with stowing stuff.
  • Windshield which makes blasting down interstates tolerable.
  • GPS I try to know the basic route I want to go and pay attention to the GPS when I'm getting pretty close to the destination.
  • SPOT satellite tracker--you never know and can calm the significant other.
  • Throttle lock as my throttle hand will cramp like crazy after a couple of hours on the slab.
  • Hand guards take wind/rain/sleet pressure off your hands. (mine also have LED lights which make you look really wide).
  • Heated gloves and vest I take on any long ride. At Pike's Peak my friend who planned this trip encountered 107 at the bottom and 30's at the top.
  • Tires: the stock Pirelli's are good for about 5k miles. The Avon AV55/56 would have easily done the whole trip (8500 was my guess). Those tires are not available anymore. the Storm 3D XM is the replacement. That's probably what I'll go to when these are worn out.
  • Skid plate. I've got one and would recommend if you're doing dirt/gravel (none of that on this trip). The oil filter is vulnerable. A ding is very close to an oil leak.
  • Extra gas tank. Out west there can be a lot of miles between services. See my comments above about the one I bought.

If your chain has more than 5k miles on it I'd recommend a new chain and drive sprocket. Of course you can install new parts on the road, but sometimes that road is long and empty.

My prep was really just following the maintenance schedule. Your trip will probably exceed 7500mi so I'd suggest a fresh oil change and valve/belt check.

My Scrambler worked perfectly. The seat broke me, though. I just couldn't do a bunch of long days (by the plan, some of them would have been 700+). So, this winter I'm going to spring for a Russell Day Long Sport. Pricey but about the best you can get.

No dirt/gravel on this trip, but I've done plenty locally. No problem.
 

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How tall are you? Did the peg position give you any leg cramps? What do you think of the throttle? I am considering a change to smooth out the power delivery.

I have heard the exhaust mountings come loose over time. Any issues for you?

Also. I am considering a sprocket change to get a little more top end speed. How did you fair on the highways? I find myself trying to shift into a gear that doesnt exist.

Any info you have on these items is extremely helpful. Thank!
 

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My FT is being modified and configured to suit my idea of what I want for middle to long distance use.

- taller gearing: I'm going to 16T front, 45T rear for approximately 9% higher gearing.
- shorter, narrower handlebars: the stock bars were too close to me as well as too wide.
- better lighting: high-tech adaptive LED headlamp plus LED turn signal indicators.
- improved throttle response: G2 Throttle Tamer plus Rexxer ECU reprogramming.
- vision improvement: CRG bar end mirrors.
- comfort improvement: short Dart fly screen, better handlebar grips, Comfort Seat
- modest luggage capacity: Ducati Classic soft bags. For longer trips, an additional modest duffle across the passenger section of the seat.

I'm doing a few other minor changes which are mostly cosmetic in nature.

Eventually, when I wear out the OEM tires, I'll fit better tires and ultimately better suspension front and rear. I might add an aftermarket slip-on muffler.

Like with all my motorcycles, middle to long distance rides are part and parcel of my normal use of the bike. For that reason, I don't generally spend a lot of time on trip preparation like replacing chain and sprockets, or doing valve checks. I do normal routine maintenance on schedule, all the time, and if it's due at what might be just a little bit into a longer trip, I do it early. That's more for a bit of convenience than anything else. I've not found myself needing heated grips or vest, etc. I do carry very good riding gear which accommodates my needs well enough.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
How tall are you? Did the peg position give you any leg cramps? What do you think of the throttle? I am considering a change to smooth out the power delivery.

I have heard the exhaust mountings come loose over time. Any issues for you?

Also. I am considering a sprocket change to get a little more top end speed. How did you fair on the highways? I find myself trying to shift into a gear that doesnt exist.

Any info you have on these items is extremely helpful. Thank!
Here's my 10K review which covers the throttle:
http://www.scramblerforum.com/threads/starting-the-scrambler.4624/#post-74777

I haven't had anything shake loose in 15K miles. But, any bolt I take off gets blue threadlock when it goes back in.

I'm 31"inseam and the pegs are fine for me. For the long trip I used tank side bags (designed for ATVs) which cut air at the knee which tries to pry the leg away from the tank. After a few hours your legs get tired of that.

Every bike I've ever had I was reaching for an extra gear. The engine pulls strong to redline. In 6th that's about 115mph. My world is below 100. I've decided to leave the gearing alone as it seems to work fine on interstates as well as fire-roads.
 

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I want to chime in on those Avon Storms, they ride like a dream and feel extra stable in the wet. Seem to be long lasting too, I've got 6,000 miles on mine and still heaps of tread.

Sarah
 

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Great ride and one I'm planning for next spring. Have to decide between my Moto Guzzi Griso and my Scrambler - your experience is a great recommendation for the scrambler! How did you carry the Rotopax?
 
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