Sunday, 27 January 2013

Kit-tastic #3: Being in one piece if/when I drop it. Part 1: The Bike

If I get to Beijing without dropping the bike I’ll be amazed and very, very lucky. The important thing then is to make sure it (and I) don’t get seriously damaged.
Fitting out the bike for this is a bit like dressing a medieval knight; greaves, gauntlets, vambrace and spaulder anyone?
The 1200GS has a boxer engine so protecting the cylinder heads is vital if it goes over. Crash bars and head protectors are a must. Crossing rocky ground you need a solid sump guard that covers the gap between the wheels. Grills prevent flying stones damaging the headlight and oil cooler.
Bendable gear and rear brake levers and “Barkbusters” to shield the clutch and front brake levers mean vital controls should be OK or repairable. The rest is all about stopping various fragile but exposed items from snapping off in a crash: brake and clutch reservoirs, fuel lines and various sensors. (TBH, this last lot look more bling than real protection – we’ll see).
Most of this stuff is Touratech. It’s well designed kit from the alchemists who really can turn base metal (aluminium in this case) into gold.

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