Sunday, September 6, 2020

Crabtree Falls (Virginia)

Rebecca and I were looking for an escape from the city without too much time on the highway, so we opted to try to find a campsite near Crabtree Falls. At first, it seemed we were not going to have any luck, due to the busy Labor Day weekend. Eventually, though, we found a spot to spread out and enjoy one night in the woods.

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Friday, September 4, 2020

East End XC (Richmond, VA)

It's easy to take for granted the trails I've got literally out my door. Richmond has a great outdoor community, with trails being built that zig-zag throughout the downtown area wherever there lies even a small patch of woods. Consider this video "part one" as I'll produce another sometime soon which will continue westward to the Buttermilk and North Bank trails.

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Saturday, August 29, 2020

Big Woods WMA (Wakefield, VA)

Whit and I finally got our friend Lory out to join us on a ride, and he dusted us!

We tried riding to Hog Island Wildlife Management Area [WMA], but were turned away at the Dominion Surry Power Station. Instead, we rode to Big Woods WMA and discovered some decent sand & gravel roads to explore.

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Sunday, August 23, 2020

Standup Jetski Practice

For anyone who hasn't experienced it, riding a standup jetski is a completely different feeling from a sitdown version. Turning is a learned skill, and I've got PLENTY of learning to do!

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Sunday, August 9, 2020

Vstrom Chain & Sprockets

I've been on a roll lately, editing video I've had sitting dormant for a while. This footage is actually from January 2019! I've changed the sprocket and chain another time since then.

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JetSki on the water (James River, VA)

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Ski's finally running!

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The number of parts I've thrown at this ski is starting to add up:
Jet Ski Solutions Stator
SBT Crankshaft Seals
SBT Starter
Starter Relay
Intake Grate
Finally, though, I got it running and called my friend, Ian, to see if he'd like to join me on the water with his boat, since breakdown was surely inevitable 😉

He agreed and we set out to the nearest boat ramp...

The ski started and ran well. Once we reached a calm cove off the side of the James River we decided to uncover the engine compartment to check for water, since I knew the [non-waterproof] toggle switch to the bilge pump wasn't working. WOW! That's a lot of water!

I decided to cut the wires and jump them to get the bilge pump to run, emptying the engine compartment of most of the water.

One apparent source of the water was a crack in the exhaust pipe, which is injected with water to help cool. I'll remove the pipe, weld the crack & swap the toggle switch (installed by previous owner) with a waterproof unit. After that, another trip to the river to identify the next repair needed 😄

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Monday, August 3, 2020

CA Superbike School (VIR)

My first experience on a sportbike was one to remember!

Since visiting VIR to watch MotoAmerica races in the past, I've always wanted to ride the course. Aside from a leisurely parade lap, though, there wasn't much opportunity.

This spring, however, my friend Mike mentioned the CA Superbike School. He was enrolled for an advanced class and asked if I'd like to join him the same day at the entry-level.

The instructors were great and I really appreciated the format. You'd have a classroom session, followed by a chance to implement the drill on-track. Groups of two or three riders were assigned an on-track coach to observe, then take the lead and instruct with hand signals to show proper execution. It really did work well.

My only complaint was the number of riders, especially the slower ones, that we had to navigate through every lap. Only a handful of corners were ridden at maximum speed as I was typically stuck behind someone inching their way around the course. It almost certainly became a lesson on proper passing etiquitte than anything else.

With that said, I suppose the most logical next step will be re-enrolling next season in a more advanced level - perhaps even inquiring about enrollment numbers and dropping out if I feel I'll be stuck in another bloated field of riders.

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