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After a scoot-free weekend folowing my collection on Friday of 'Arnie' my new 650, I checked the weather forecast and it promised a clear, dry day. So, after SWMBO had departed to go to work, I released Arnie from his stable, donned my thermals, and headed south. I had no route in mind, and didn't even bother to take my GPS. I knew Arnie had a fulltankagas and I had a clear day, so what the hell.

Let's just say that the Burger provides an intoxicating riding experience. Actually, in that respect it's not that far removed from my Piaggio X9 500, the most obvious difference being the slightly more instant, gutsy, silky smooth kick-in-the pants you get when you open the throttle. As I've said before, "it's the same as the X9 only more so", IYSWIM, and even better suited big blokes such as I ...

The short version of this travelogue is that I intended to be out for no more than an hour but ended up riding for nearly five hours, stopping only for fuel. I covered an effortless (for Arnie, I mean) and highly satisfying 195 miles, never really knowing where I was and not caring much either.

I've attached a route map which I produced when I got home, before I'd forgotten where I'd been. It's not the best quality but I hope that it'll serve its purpose.



As you can see, I avoided M-ways altogether and minimised my use of dual carriageways as a mark of respect for Arnie's recommended 4,000 rpm max running-in speeds. In reality, 4k revs equates to almost anything you like up to about 80mph, so that was pleasant surprise number one.

Briefly, my route started by the rightmost little red arrow on the map (just West of Waterlooville) and proceeded in a clockwise direction. I passed through:

Southampton (actually, I skirted the city),
Lyndhurst (in the New Forest)
Lymington
Christchurch
Ringwood
Bere Regis
Wareham
Dorchester
Blandford Forum
Salisbury
Sutton Scotney
Winchester
Corehampton
...then back home again.

I didn't stop to take in the views, but made a mental note to take my camera next time. As you can see, the route takes in some of the most picturesque and historic places in the South. I'm a lover of old churches and I saw enough today to make an entire week's worth of visits come the Summer months.

The route also sped across some of the loveliest, traffic-free roads in this part of the world. The Dorchester to Winchester leg, via Salisbury, was a real blast, spoiled only by the fact that I had nearly run out of fuel by the time that I reached the fuel stop in Blandford Forum. It's so easy to 'make good progress' while enjoying some prehistoric scenery at the same time. Oh yes - this was a good ride!

Pleasant surprise #2: Arnie had returned 56.1 mpg (Imperial gallons, remember :wink: ) which I thought compared favourably with the 62mpg I used to get on 'Roxy', my X9. No doubt the rate of consumption will increase once I feel that Arnie's properly run in, but I was still pleased with this figure.

It wasn't all good, however. Despite dressing up with all my thermal gear, heated grips, huge screen etc, I realised by about 100 miles that I was bloody freezing In truth, I don't ever remember being so cold before ... ever. My grips gamely kept my palms hot but my head, back and feet had become numb by this stage. Had I seen an eatery, I'd have stopped ... but I didn't. Typical!

When I got home, I could hardly move. I couldn't get the key in the front door lock, and had a great deal of trouble removing my gear. The hot shower, bowl of soup and pint of hot tea made a difference, but even now, an hour later, I'm still shivering. Stupid sod. I really must get my heated waistcoat plumbed in.

It's clear that I'm still not fully fit after my illness. In fact, I received a serious bollocking from SWMBO when she realised what I'd been up to during today, the furthest I'd ridden since Dec 8th being a 30 miler in January and a 50 miler on Friday, the former ride wiping me out for days. But I do feel much better - not exactly match fit, but so much better than I've been.

Actually, I'm very pleased with myself. Today, I have actually got back in the saddle after nearly 3 barren months during which I've been too ill to ride very far. I've enjoyed the new Burger Experience, seen some beautiful sights, added some more miles to the odometer, ... and nearly contracted hypothermia.

How's that for a return to riding?

I do like my new 650, but above all I've just reminded myself just how much I love getting out there and riding.

Oh yes. A good day (if a chilly one)
 

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Sounds like you had a great ride. Maybe you need to take it a bit easier (on yourself, not Arnie) till you get the heated gear setup. :wink:
 

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Thanks for sharing. Sounds like a GREAT ride :D
 

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Yes, some heated gear will make a huge difference.

I've done many rides that ended up being 195 miles, give or take 5 miles. I noticed early on that whenever I took my motorcycle out for a ride I would come back with about 150 miles on the clock. With the scooter, it would be close to 200 miles. Why? Was the scooter faster, more comfortable, or did it ride better? No. Certainly not. It just happens to have something that lures me into going the extra distance. I think it has something to do with the ease of riding it - but I stopped trying to figure it out.

When I saw you had ridden 195 miles, I just thought - of course. That is what these 650s consider to be a decent jaunt - and we are just along for the ride!
 

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Keith
Thanks for sharing that - great report. :)
I do not want to tempt fate but it is distinctly warmer this evening - 7 deg C when I left work which is in stark comparison to the last couple of weeks when it has been bouncing either side of zero!
What GPS do you have and have you decided how to mount it yet?

BTW - take it easy m8!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
NormanB said:
Keith
...What GPS do you have and have you decided how to mount it yet?
Hi Norman.

I've got a StreetPilot III. As you know :wink: it's a terrific piece of kit.

Looking at the gallery, I really like the way you've mounted yours but, sadly, I lack totally the engineering skills required to manufacture such an elegant solution (or anything else for that matter :? )

As a lifelong RAM fan, I'm thinking of something fitted onto the bar pad, but I'll give it some more thought before starting to drill or hack.

Unless, of course, others have found a successful way to mount the SP III without needing to weld or tap anything. Anybody? :)
 

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Thanks for sharing that with us, I am still waiting for delivery - expected at end of the month. The more I read, the worse the wait seems. :(
In the meantime I can still potter about on the 400 of course. :)
 

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Great write up Keith . I told you it wouldn't take long for the first service to come along. I know you have a bit to go but at this rate it's only a couple of rides away. BTW the gas mileage will get better once the machine is broken in.
 

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chiefkeefe said:
snipped

As a lifelong RAM fan, I'm thinking of something fitted onto the bar pad, but I'll give it some more thought before starting to drill or hack.

Unless, of course, others have found a successful way to mount the SP III without needing to weld or tap anything. Anybody? :)
Keith

There are a few options (on this forum) and I have not decided which one to go for (yet).
I too want to achieve a good solid fix for a RAM mount ---but without cutting too much plastic.
Methinks we should meet up in due course to compare notes.
I do not think any of the options will require machine shop facilities! :)
 

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Cool post. Great jaunt. Your (almost) last sentence really said it all didn't it?
Pete
 

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Hi Chiefkeefe

Lovely ride. Certainly need to plumb in that heated vest. Now that we have vests, don't know why it took us 5 years of riding in English weather to actually get them.

Your neck of the woods is pencilled in for a trip, but the Peak and Lake Districts have the priority for 2005.

Our first tank gave us 57 miles, we have now had a worst of 49, best at 67 and an average over just a tad over 6000 miles of 59, and happy with the return on mileage.

Cheers
 
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