Thursday, April 30, 2020

Captivity Day 36

Spent some petrol money the other day.  Unfortunately, still not on petrol...

On a lark, and courtesy of some Adv Rider posts on phones as GPS devices and a Samsung special (phew, the stars were aligning to get me to spend some hard earned!), I bought a tablet.

Just like a phone, only even bigger and not a phone!
I then installed an app called OsmAnd which allows you to download open sourced maps and will also understand .gpx files from Mapsource/Basecamp.

I then copied over one of my TT2000 maps and went out to the shed to compare the tablet to the GPS.

Screen is just slightly bigger...
You'll note that I've stuck the tablet inside my tankbag.  Great place for it and I could get power to it if necessary but I'd probably smash it or it would get cooked in the sun.  If I do use it for navigation it will only be as a backup so will probably be stashed away somewhere a bit safer.

The software seems to work quite well, but I've yet to try to use it in anger.  Theoretically, it should also be able to send directions to my Sena as well.

There's a fair bit more detail available from the larger screen too:



Another thing it will be useful will to store our TT plan and the checkpoint pictures.  I can see me arranging the pictures in order and just flicking through to the next one at each checkpoint so I know what to look for with other information like distances and next fuel stop etc.

Very geeky...

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Captivity Day 34

What?  Still stuck in captivity?

Yup.  NZ might be in Level 3 now (and that means a lot of people can go back to work) but people are still being asked to work from home if possible and in my case I generally can.

We're starting up slowly with only priority work involving small numbers of people onsite working under strict conditions.  We'll gradually ramp this up as we see how things go and what the government tell us we can and cannot do.

So, I'll mostly still be at home with perhaps the odd trip in and out or day at work.

One thing I'll definitely be doing is using the bikes for this essential travel as much as possible - if I can remember how to ride them...


Monday, April 27, 2020

Captivity Day 33

It's been a pretty quiet long weekend with frustratingly good weather which could not be utilized in the most appropriate ways.

But, one cool thing that happened was the Armchair Adventure Festival.  This was a neat even started by a couple of guys who rode around the world on a scooter with a sidecar.

They invited a number of other adventurers on to talk about their various excursions and achievements.  There were a lot of RTW bike travelers but also some other interesting talks by people who walked, run, and paddled long journeys.

Yes, I wasted quite a few hours in front of a screen...


Sunday, April 26, 2020

Captivity Day 32

Yesterday was not only Anzac Day but it was also Saturday and there was a new online riding challenge to deal too...

Kiwi Rider magazine were posting various videos of people doing feet-up U-turns in their driveway.  It just had to be done...

Saturday, April 25, 2020

Captivity Day 31

So as mentioned yesterday, today was a very different Anzac day.

I did get up nice and early to be out on the footpath by 6am.  There was a next door neighbour out on the street too and the people across the street were there with their radio pumping out the broadcast on National Radio.

There were a few waves but other than that we all kept our distance and listened to the service.

One of the amusing things about this Anzac day was that people were all doing there own thing and you could hear the Last Post more than once coming from different areas of the neighbourhood.  The odd dog joined in as well.

So not quite the same as normal but good that people did participate.

Best leave you with my favourite version of the Last Post again...

Friday, April 24, 2020

Captivity Day 30

Tomorrow is Anzac day and in the first time forever (well, nearly) there will be no Dawn service or parades.  A real shame but there are some ways that people are remembering our war dead and returned servicemen.

Instead of attending a Dawn parade, people are being encourage to stand at the end of their driveways at 6am and to remember the fallen: Stand at Dawn website.

And the other way is by creating displays in windows and gardens.  I've spotted a few while out walking the dog and there's three below (love the last one).  There's a few more I've missed too so maybe I'll get them tomorrow.




We will remember them.

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Captivity Day 29

Like a lot of people, the internet has been a pretty reasonable source of entertainment this past 29 days.  There's been a fairly constant feast of bike videos, Netfilx, music and comedy.  Being able to cast to the TV and have the stereo pumping is all good too.

Youtube has to be the worst, after watching each video, you get sucked into more of the suggestions on the page.  Last night there was a fair bit of Billy Connolly when I should have been shuffling off to catch some z's.

Here's a very old one that is relatively SFW:

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Captivity Day 28

Things are getting desperate!

Been looking at hair trimmers on the web - and how to drive them...

That is all.


Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Captivity Day 27

The latest captivity challenge on Adv Rider is to post up some favourite photos.  There's some really great stuff in there but for my (first at least) post I just chose three from this year because they were a couple of real highlights.  And I didn't even take two of the pics...

So obviously, the Dusty Butt featured along with a bucket list photo:

The Obelisk

And I included this picture because I just really like it and the thumbs up really speaks to how the whole trip went and the amount of fun we eked out of the little bikes.

The Mouse above stunning Titirangi Bay

And then of course, the completion of my tenth TT2000 and joining the TTX club.  I love everything about this event and already can't wait for next year's one.  One of my better checkpoint pictures.  Colin and I joked the other day that we take a lot of time getting our pictures - at least half a second usually...

One fantastic bike in a very nice out of the way place...

Monday, April 20, 2020

Captivity Day 26

Today I really did break out of captivity, putting in a fairly long day at work.  I wasn't quite doing my normal role but I got to talk to people and wander around the site a little.

Unfortunately it didn't mean a ride on one of the bikes as I was carrying a bit of gear and I'm not sure if my work laptop is waterproof.  Maybe next time it'll be more like this:


And now that we've had an announcement about when we'll enter level 3 we've got to work out what that means for us at work.  The company is playing it safe and that may mean continued working from home and only going to work when it's absolutely necessary.

Driving home tonight I was actually surprised how much traffic was out and about...

Sunday, April 19, 2020

Saturday, April 18, 2020

Friday, April 17, 2020

Captivity Day 23

Or not...

Today I was essential and actually got to go into work to prepare for some essential maintenance next week.  Setting up signage, training material, PPE, sanitisers etc.

Saw 5 other actual people and of course maintained the proper social distancing.  Five is a bit less than the usual 300+ though...

I get to do it again on Monday but then more than likely back to WFH.

Did not get to ride a bike - laptop may not have enjoyed the rain and was a bit disappointed when the cop I saw didn't pull me over to ask what I was doing...

Turns out there's the odd Essential Worker Meme out there too...







Thursday, April 16, 2020

Captivity Day 22

There's been plenty of Covid related humour doing the rounds but there's also a lot of laughs to be had from other sources too.

I'd seen this one before but Colin shared it again the other day - fantastic!


I did have to remind him that I had witnessed him failing to ride smoothingly on the grease mud and running afoul of the skid demon!

And I do enjoy tootelling with vigour with my Stebel on the Connie!

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Captivity Day 21

So I've been digging through those scans again and now it's time to share some Dad's past bikes.  I definitely haven't got all of them but maybe he can have a dig around in his archives at some stage...



Prior to the sprogcopalypse he had a few bikes and raced in enduros and the like.  He still had a few while I was younger and yes, I was transported to the kindy on the tank of his Mach 3 a time or 2...


I can also remember a trip up into the snow on trail bikes with Dad, his brother and another mate.  I would have been on the tank again and I still can remember how cold the snow was when a caught a really icy snowball from Uncle Bruce.

Uncle Bruce on the back with Dad and a lamb inquiring about a position as seat cover...
Anyway, fast forward to around the time when I was nearly old enough for a licence and Dad was riding a little Suzuki A50 as a commuter bike (man it went well too!) and he stumbled on a bit of a step up.

1135cc's of Grrrrrunt!
He picked this up from a guy in Waipuk who had just bought a K100 and been told to get rid of the Suzy as it had cost his wife one of her legs...nasty.  It was still a little damaged and he had to rebuild some parts of the fairing and apply a bit of paint here and there.


Me and a mate (who had a car licence and could drive us back from Waipuk) went down with him to pick it up and half way home stopped on the side to have a chat and learn that the Suzy could cruise at twice the speed limit...

It certainly went well and I had a few decent trips on it as a pillion before finally getting my first road bike and a learner's licence.  Never road the GSX - it scared the daylights out of someone riding something with over 100hp less...

Next up was a bike that Dad still says held the best motor that he's ever owned.

Silver rocket
At this stage I had illegally moved onto a 400 and this silver beast was another scary fast thing that I believe I only rode once - and very quietly out the back of Takapau/Ormonville.  I still remember how the brakes only needed to be brushed lightly and the bike would haul up.


It looks like he held onto it for a little while as here's a pic of it with my 750.  Looks like were heading out for some mischief...and I'm carrying all the crap...


With these next three I'm not sure if I've got the order right, but, by now the olds have moved house so Dad needed a new bike!


The FJ was just a lovely bike and I got the privilege of delivering it from Palmy to Napier for Dad.  It was a really good introduction to big-bore, torquey and effortless tourers.

Compared to the GSX it was just idling along and ate miles - the trip up SH50 was fantastic!


And then there was a complete change - although the torque figure went through the roof...


A 1,500cc V-twin sure can put the smile on your dial when you grab a handful.  Revs were irrelevant, just grab a handful and you were gone putting some serious stress on that rear tyre.

Unfortunately, it had cruiser handling and this didn't quite sit well after things like Fizzers and FJ's.  Dad improved it a little by fitting longer rear shocks (and possibly lowering the front a tad) which helped a bit.

Chasing him out to Herbertville with me on either the 750 or my RF one day was hilarious.  I just sat behind and watched him locking up the rear going into corners and then leaving excess metal on the road as he tried to persuade it to go around corners at probably legal speeds...


Eventually common sense got the better of him and this lovely arrived.


One of Kawasaki's finest and possibly opening my eyes to the big K's product.  These things could defeat time...


At the time I had my RF900 and Two Wheels did a back-to-back comparison of the two bikes.  I remember with basically agreeing with the article with both bikes getting points over each other in the categories they were measured on.  I preferred the RF's slightly lower weight and more sporty feel (I still had little exposure to "big" bikes) but the ZZR definitely was smoother and of course had more ultimate go.

Dad loved it and did a bit of touring on it.  Here's he and Mum heading South for Warbirds over Wanaka.


And now onto the last of the scans but not Dad's last bike.


Interestingly he got an Adv bike at around the time I got the Connie...He liked the GS but I have to say getting of the Connie at the bottom of Vinegar hill and swapping over to the GS (with mum on the pillion seat) was a bit of a let down - especially when Dad disappeared on the Connie and I begun wondering if I'd see it again. 

It's possible that I referred to this bike as the tractor...a bit hard comparing a low powered flat twin to a silky smooth four "de-tuned" to 155hp...

Well, we'll leave it there as we've exited the days of film and I've got digital pics of his last couple of bikes.

Oh, and here's my list of past bikes.  It's just missing some trailees - a TS185, DR400S and XR250.  Hopefully I can make the list grow some more in time...

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Captivity Day 20

Time for a video.

This is some of Day 3 of the Dusty Butt, shot by Rowan on his new T7 Tenere.  It features a couple of idiots on WR's  riding through the dusty and multi-gated Thomson Gorge (no relation).


Geez, Colin's bike is rowdy eh?

And that Tenere goes alright too 🀀

Monday, April 13, 2020

Captivity Day 19

So I've had a little dig around in some of my old scans and found a few more pics to share on the Adv thread but thought I'd post a couple here with a few extra words.

Yes, this is me dressed in my finest safety gear about to embark on my first "tour" on my mighty RG250 (note the bottle of two stroke oil strapped behind the pack).


Me and a mate (Gary, GSX1100) rode through from Napier to Rotorua (what a mission) where we visited some of the sights, had one night there and then came back to Taupo for a second night and some stooging around there.


A can't remember all that we got up to but we did visit the Lion park and the little bike went well with the two stroke oil needing to be topped up a couple of times.

I did about 10,000 miles on that bike (a lot of commuting unfortunately) and it never did anything wrong.  Be great to have it back...

Sunday, April 12, 2020

Captivity Day 18

After the enormous ride yesterday it only seemed proper to give the Ten a wee bath.  The other vehicles got to jealously watch...



Friday, April 10, 2020

Captivity Day 16

I'm not the only bored one.  The NZ section of Advrider has all sorts going on.  In another thread we're being asked to show scans of old biking photos.  I've got quite a few somewhere so need to have a decent fossick.  Here's a couple that I did stumble across:



Yep, that's the old K2 Bandit and that's snow up on the top of the Pahiatua Track (North Range Road turn-off).  It was a really good dump to get so much snow up there - reasonably rare.  And I just had to go up and have a look on the bike...

I didn't join the crowds trespassing all over the farmers' land but did go up South Range Road a little bit until it got just too dicey with packed snow/ice on the road.  Can't remember getting cold but I'd be surprised if I didn't πŸ˜‰

Thursday, April 09, 2020

Captivity Day 15

Day 15 and not only do we have bears everywhere but kids are decorating their fences and even displaying artwork in their windows.  All pretty cool and giving them something to do.



Walking the dog is interesting.  People are all saying hello but go to different lengths to maintain social distance.  Seeing I've got a dog, I try to be the one that takes to the grass verge and let them have the footpath etc but some beat me to it.  I even had one guy jump onto someone's front lawn to avoid all the viruses I was carting aboard me...

Cyclist tend to still be arrogant sods (sorry Dave).  They expect that they should always have the pathway and would probably run you over the bank if they could.  I've got no time for morons like that and will be more than happy to accidentally nudge them over the bank if they lack politeness.

Anyway, working week over and time for a long weekend of ????


Tuesday, April 07, 2020

Captivity Day 13

So it appears that I'm not the only Kiwi bike rider who is missing getting out and riding.  

A while ago in the NZ section of Adv Rider I posted a video of a kid riding around a course setup at home on his neat little electric trials bike.  And then I went and had my little play on Sunday.  

This has inspired Oldbeer to setup a challenge to other Kiwi riders.  There's just a few so far but hopefully we'll see a few more.  Could get interesting/funny...

Monday, April 06, 2020

Captivity Day 12

Phew, back at work today...well, my new workplace at home πŸ˜’

At least there is plenty of humour around the place.  This is probably one of the better and most appropriate ones 😏


Saturday, April 04, 2020

Captivity Day 10

Someone at work shared this.  Apparently there are 75 band names to be found by analysing this picture.  I've got 40 so far...


This link (hopefully) will give you the picture in higher rez to make it easier.

Friday, April 03, 2020

Captivity Day 9

This video Colin found is worth a watch.  Looks like they had a sleep in most mornings - we were away earlier and never got rain πŸ˜‰

Lots of my favourite bits in it but at around 23mins there's some rocky bits that I really enjoyed on the WR.  Looks like the big bikes were a handful in some places - funny that πŸ˜‚

The drone footage is really good!