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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Like others here, I've seen the health of a couple of my good riding buddies falter recently and have to beg off some of our planned trips. Over the last year we had made several tentative prep-runs up from Texas to visit the Arkansas portion of the Trans-America Trail. The TAT is described as a coast to coast "Back Roads" route to see America.

Come next spring I'm planning to break trail from Arkansas toward it's western loop on "Beuford T Dudley - Extraordinaire". This modified 84 GW is my Low Rent Red Neck version of the BMW GS1200. :) He's been a reliable tough ol'e Swiss army knife and my third semi-off road 1200. Most of my cracked fairing back country travels are considered too far below the radar and slow paced by most riders. Especially since I much prefer leisurely remote mountain camping when the weather allows.

From what I've seen, Beuford should be able to handle most of the primary route but I plan to change directions as needed to by-pass any boggy creek beds or questionable water crossings. My 1500 has proven to be much too big and heavy for the expected unimproved roads as a result of a few very modest trial runs one year in Montana.

Here is an informational long distance motorcycle travel site maintained by a retiree and his friends. I've followed their trip logs for quite a while now and they take lots of pictures, including their experiences along most of the TAT :

http://bigdogadventures.com/

This will primarily be a much needed therapy run - Michael
 

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as long as the roads are not sandy or soft the 1200 wing should be ok but it has less ground clearance than your 1500 wing so be ware and have fun
 

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Sounds like a good adventure. Be sure to share some pictures and your story!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Ground Clearance -

Hey Detdrbuzzard - Ol'e Beauford T Dudley is definitely not a off road dirt bike and you are right about the 1200 ground clearance. It makes the ride really rough but I boost the suspension's air pressure for the max height when I'm headed for an unpaved road. I have also installed an ATV protective plate under the bike to ward off an unexpected bump or flying gravel. Plus - I added a caged headlight rock guard to avoid another cracked glass lens. The radiator grill screen has been doubled with a spacer between the two for better immunity from damage. I plan to reinstall a set of mild knobby profile tires for when I ride the TAT.

My theory is that if I visualize feathers floating in the wind and I stand up on the foot pegs, it lightens the bike. :)

Michael
 

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Taking the tour to the trails.....Ride Safely Michael and enjoy
 

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Enjoy your therapy, it sounds like a blast.
 

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The 1200's do not like sand. My 1200 just want to go staight ahead in sand.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Squirrely Footing -

Hey Eric- Even in off-road fighting form, Beuford T Dudley (The Dud) doesn't care much for sand either. I don't search it out but can usually work my way through any squirrely footing if I slow way down and I have a couple of dual sport tires mounted. You may have noticed that the saddle bag lids are tied down with straps just in case a fall busts something open. This was part of my learning curve crossing a deep sand berm along a dry creek bed. Here's a couple of photos at the end of a long day of the Dud in preparation for the back country trails up near Oark Ark.

Michael
 

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The preps are done. Time to play :wink2::grin2:
 

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One more item of caution. While out on a two track with my 84, the road was so rough (no sand though), it just beat the heck out of the bike - even at 10 mph. Soon after that, we were pulling into Yellowstone and the bike just quit. Yep, there I was in line get into the park with the other 100 cars - traffic jam city. Anyway, I was able to limp it along to a parking lot. Had an electrical problem. Eventually we identified that it was the ignition. After I returned home, I did the research and the bottom of the ignition solder was such that they did a recal. Of course that was like 20 years ago so I had to do the repair. On the road I had to use electrical tape to hold the wires to the contact points of the ignition. So now I have a new policy - if the road is that rough, I just turn around and find another one.
And yes - dry camping - that is the best. Find a quiet - out of the way place - pop up the tent and grab 5-7 hrs of sleep - usually gone by the time the sun is fully up. Or we've found that some small towns don't mind if you stay right in their central park. We just pull into town about 9pm, head right to the police station and ask. If they are good with it, then we know that we won't get rousted out at 3am.
Happy trails.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Rough Ride -

Hey Tschutter - I understand exactly what you mean trying to keep control while riding over some dangerous footing. I suddenly lost a rear tire at 65mph north of Beaver Creek, Wy that about dumped me and all my camping gear all over the road. Luckily there was no traffic coming because I used both sides of the road to keep "The Dud" upright. It turned out that my side wall must have been slashed from a piece of metal I'd run over a day earlier. I'd been looking at the scenery instead of the road and I hit something sharp that fell off some farmer's trailer.

With no help in sight and my phone showing zero bars the only option was to creep along the next 4 miles with both feet dragging the ground to reach the town of Moose Creek . I about shook loose every nut and bolt on the bike but I finally made it into a small hotel parking lot.

I keep a long list of spare parts and a large box of used stuff back home for my wife to send in emergencies. She Fedex'd a new 150-90/15 tire off ebay and had it delivered in a couple of days. I borrowed some large screwdrivers to mount the tire and protected the rim with a split piece of old water hose. I then applied a generous coating of red gasket sealant between the tire and rim as a "get-me-down-the-road" precaution. By hanging the rear half of the bike off the edge of a nearby concrete driveway I had found the vertical clearance needed to remove and install everything.

I hope to never put me or poor Ol'e Dudley through that kind of stress again.

Michael
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
Correction - Moose

Sorry - I looked at my old notes that I keep when traveling and realized the town that I'd stayed in while replacing the tire was named just "Moose". There was another similar little town called Moose Creek but it was farther away.

There is a Chinese saying that the faintest writing on a piece of paper is better than the clearest memory. :)

Michael
 

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Sorry to hear of your tire problems but......................it is all good now.
 
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