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Sunday, October 30, 2011


Yesterday on the way to Las Cruces with Jon, we discovered that the left side head gasket had a good size steamy leak. I was on the track of trying to reload windows XP on my nettie and that was a failure so the best thing was the ice cream at Caliche's and learning I needed to fix my moto.

I pretty much go with the idea illustrated when someone says "if I had been five minutes earlier, I would have been in that accident!". I also believe that when I flow with the Tao I am in good hands...way better than mine. So I am thrilled this turned up before the trip and where I have a place and all my tools and any help I need to do the job.

I think part of the problem is that I succumbed to that old bugaboo that says, "buy the cheaper one!" and I used aftermarket head gaskets last time I had the heads off. Big mistake...they have steel covered with a composite graphite covering and Honda's OEM gasket which rarely fail are copper....yep, you guessed it...OEM on order now.  Unfortunately the price I pay for OEM is $46 a piece instead of half that for the knockoffs....

I don't know why I forget this, but when Tim Cahill rode shotgun in a new GMC truck with Garry Sowerby in the late 80s on a road trip to break the Tierra del Fuego to Prudhoe Bay time record, the only things that broke were the aftermarket accessories ...the GM parts all held up through a grueling mega trip!

Incidentally they broke the old record of  50 days with their record of 23.5 days! Give that a thought...15,000 miles and maybe 15 borders to cross in 23.5 days!!! That is stunning to me. Not anything that I would ever want to do...I am more interested in doing the slow record, but a real accomplishment to those in the business of record breaking. The book 'Road Fever' by Tim is a bit of a bore so I won't really recommend it but have it in my collection of long distance road trip books..

In the olden days of the 80's the OEM stuff was skookum and Honda was and is one of the best companies in the world for quality. Keep in mind my rig consists of a 1983 high mileage drive train in a 1980 frame with an early 1970's sidecar, so we are talking the "GOOD OLDEN DAYS" of manufacturing. .

I miss that but we'll see how a rig with somewhere in the hundreds of thousands of miles on it and at least half of that with a heavy steel bucket of a sidecar  hanging on the side of it, does.... And I will hope I don't have to hitchhike home with my little doggie buddy to fetch the van and trailer to retrieve  "El Poderoso"  (The powerful one), named in deference to Alberto Granada's Norton 500 that he and Ernesto "Che" Guevara rode around South America in the early 50's.

Here's to repair!
Off to the garage,


  1. Saw the first photo and thought I was going to read about Mexico... and you are still in TorC??? Pout.

  2. Yep, wasn't due to leave until Weds. morning so this will just be a delay of a few days....I am wanting to be on the road but you know how things happen. No reason for me to pout since as I said in the post, better here than on the road....I have the sidecar off the bike and parts ordered so next the heads come off and cleanup begins...
    Another little bug I want to fix is some bogus oiling on the right side...that will clear up with a new gasket so this another blessing.


Baja mellow

Baja Bri

Me and my buddy

Me and my buddy
Bri and "Dina Whitesocks the Dancing Dervish Dog"

B.O.B. and Dina

B.O.B. and Dina


About Me

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well, I am a 70 year old married man with a couple of sons and 4 grand kids and am currently wending my way around the planet in any way that I find interests me. I am a retired mechanic, certified motorcycle nut, ride a sidecar rig and practice living in the moment. I am a 31 year friend of Bill and Bob and have lived a life beyond my wildest dreams.