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  #1  
Old 10-27-2012, 11:30 AM
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Default Advice needed: Alaska 2013 on wee

I'm planning a solo Alaska ride for aug 15-sept 15 2013. I want to equip me wee properly for the trip, but don't want to buy needless farkles just for the sake of it. I own a DL650k7 with 4k miles and factory luggage. The only things I've added thus far are a sw motech skid plate and crash bars. I'd like to get advice from some veterans about what mods would be beneficial for this trip. Cost, while important, is not the greatest concern. My greatest concern is to equip the bike correctly for my journey. I think I want to add a pair of happy trails panniers in place of the factory luggage, but beyond that I would like some recommendations as to what I need.


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  #2  
Old 10-27-2012, 11:36 AM
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I also forgot to mention that I prefer to travel with a handgun. I understand that handguns are not allowed in Canada. I'm curious if anyone has made any arrangements to carry a handgun while in the US and possibly leave it with a gun dealer near the border upon entering Canada.


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  #3  
Old 10-27-2012, 12:27 PM
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You'll get many different suggestions as to how to equip your bike for the trip. My suggestions would include a set of new or nearly new tires, especially if you plan on riding any of the available unpaved riding possibilities. Make sure your chain is in good shape and properly adjusted before you leave, and plan on, at the minimum, lubing it at least once a day. Dupont Chainsaver now comes in a handy small plastic squeeze bottle that stores easily in a tankbag, trunk, etc. Change your oil and filter before you leave and after arriving up here.

It sounds like your bike is already well-equipped for such a trip. The OEM bags are fine, but the Happy Trails panniers provide great storeage as well as tipover protection.

Expect to run into cool or even cold weather in August and September, so you might consider, if you haven't already done so, obtaining a heated jacket liner such as a Warm & Safe or Gerbings, and the controller. Little things like that sure make a miserable cold (and sometimes wet as well) day more enjoyable.
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Old 10-27-2012, 01:57 PM
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Canada doesn't play went in comes bringing guns in. I know that there is a procedure to ship your long gun (rifle) through Canada and pick it up in Alaska. I'm not sure if it applies to handguns.

Prepare for this: Cold 50 degree days with drizzle rain, grey skies and long straight roads. Clear, sunny days are a rarity in this part of the world. Be off the road by 4 PM everyday. Watch for Moose... the bastards will ruin your day given a chance.

Fairbanks Daily News-Miner - Florida motorcyclist injured in collision with moose on Alaska road

You can ship tires to certain bike shops up there and have them put on when you arrrive.

I did the trip from California in 1987 with a 1953 Willys pick-up. A scooter would have been faster... and more reliable! Ahhh, the follies of youth...

Last edited by DeesWee; 10-27-2012 at 01:59 PM.
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Old 10-27-2012, 02:54 PM
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Start a list of different categories........camping supplies (if you are camping), bike maint, clothing/apparel/gear, creature comforts, stromtrooper contacts in AK, phone numbers of Suzuki dealerships along the way, etc......

The list can be long.......expect a flat tire, big-azz mosquitos, change of tires along the way, oil/filter change........maybe Emergency Med Insurance (to fly you out??)........maps/GPS/ The Milepost.......it goes on and on. With only 7k miles on your sprockets/chain, you should be OK if they are currently in very good condition. Change the brake pads/oil/oil filter/air filter prior to leaving.......make sure you ride some after all these routine items are done to make sure they were done correctly.

I'm envious........hope to do this trip in the coming years.
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  #6  
Old 10-27-2012, 08:59 PM
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I did the Haul Road this August. It will be cold that far north. Get a heated jacket and grips, and some sort of hippo hands if you can*.

You can get fresh rubber in Fairbanks here:

Adventure Cycleworks

A couple of guys I met on KLRs took a shotgun through Canada. Handguns seem to freak us out, though.

In addition to my usual tools, I took a tire plug kit and a small compressor just in case. Check the 'spares for Alaska' thread for some good lists to choose from.

The road is difficult, but not too bad. Around Coldfoot, I met these guys:

Antique Auto Mushers of Alaska.

There I was wondering if I had aggressive enough rubber on the 'Strom, and a couple of Model A's putt by... My 'Strom is in picture #98.

Glenn

* I forgot mine, and couldn't find any in Fairbanks. I cut the legs off a pair of rain pants and slid them up over the bars. Cut the wind and kept the rain off so the grip heaters could keep my hands toasty.
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Old 10-27-2012, 09:04 PM
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My advice is get out and ride some dirt roads where you live so you are ready for the evil road const. on the alcan , top of the world , and many others . there is a great suzuki dealer in fairbanks . I bought a stock front sproket cheaper than here in MN . going that late you will be cold take gear for it in july 10 we had many days at 55 degrees or less all day . also you may need a rear tire if you call fairbanks suzuki you can order one and put it on your card and you won'r have to hunt one down . go to Dawson city its a must see and get your passport stamped at the border just ask . wash your bike often to get the cloride off I didn't and I had a BBB of a time with a scrub brush when I got home . 9600 miles 33 days rolled up a wet tent every day . look out for cridders big and small early morning and evening
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  #8  
Old 10-27-2012, 10:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DeesWee View Post
Canada doesn't play went in comes bringing guns in. I know that there is a procedure to ship your long gun (rifle) through Canada and pick it up in Alaska. I'm not sure if it applies to handguns.

Prepare for this: Cold 50 degree days with drizzle rain, grey skies and long straight roads. Clear, sunny days are a rarity in this part of the world. Be off the road by 4 PM everyday. Watch for Moose... the bastards will ruin your day given a chance.

Fairbanks Daily News-Miner - Florida motorcyclist injured in collision with moose on Alaska road

You can ship tires to certain bike shops up there and have them put on when you arrrive.

I did the trip from California in 1987 with a 1953 Willys pick-up. A scooter would have been faster... and more reliable! Ahhh, the follies of youth...
Why should you be off the road by 4PM? There's plenty of daylight available then. Good advice to watch out for big critters, though.
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  #9  
Old 10-27-2012, 11:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by strompilot View Post
Why should you be off the road by 4PM? There's plenty of daylight available then. Good advice to watch out for big critters, though.
4 PM is when the big critters come out. Animals move from place to place in the late afternoon. Mostly in search of H20 or food. Sometimes sex.

Plus if you have any issues (mechanical or otherwise), it's much easier to deal with them early in the day. A flat at 3:30 pm is way better than one at 6:30 pm.

In my travels I've always been the guy that gets an early start and finishes in early afternoon. It has served me well. If your camping and get off the road by 4:00 pm it gives you time to find a spot, set up, do any maintenance needed and get some food going. Early to bed early to rise... as it goes.

To each his own...That's just me...
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  #10  
Old 10-28-2012, 12:02 AM
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Bug spray. THE GOOD STUFF.
lived in alaska for a year and your gonna want the 100% Deet.

last time I passed through canada, you were required to have $500 cash in hand or so much plus credit cards. check on this.

Good rain gear. test it out thoroughly before the trip. It rains a lot and with the cool humid weather, you are going to have a tough time drying out if you let yourself get wet.

consider adding these to you repair kit:
extra vehicle fluids.
gasket making material and rtv sealant. ( not a lot of traffic, you can make a bike limp along for quite a while with minimum fluids if you can sealer it up and add your spare fluids to it. )
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