The good news:
The suspension is now dialed.
The Frijole 883 Sportster just keeps getting better. Last week we tested with new fork guts, lower gearing and a different GPS system. The good news is that the suspension is now dialed. We are still going to fine-tune the rear shocks, but it’s race-ready as-is. Big thanks to Roll Design and Precision Concepts for helping us get this beast in shape. The bike sits a little higher in front now which has helped ergonomics and geometry and with a taller bar/riser combo, riders are in a slightly more comfortable position. We made our own shifter and brake lever, a double-shear top shock mount to match the bottom and a nifty stainless guard to keep our boots from melting on the pipe.
The other bad news:
we destroyed the three-day-old GPS.
The bad news is one of our fastest riders, Erik “Westy” Westergaard took a pretty good digger on the bike after swapping in the whoops at a fairly high rate of speed. He survived with minor abrasions and a rung bell, but it was an obvious wake-up call for all of us. Not that we weren’t taking it serious already, but watching him take a heavy hit like that was definitely sobering. Note to self: slow is smooth, smooth is fast. I know we’ll crash multiple times during the rally, but let’s hope they are all low-speed, low-side get-offs. The other bad news is that we destroyed the three-day-old GPS. Thankfully, PCI Radios to the rescue! The Pro Taper bars twisted, the risers stayed intact but deformed as the grade-10 bolt stretched and tried to pull out. Other than those bits, the bike was fine and this was a good durability test for the hardy Harley. Rouser got it all swapped out overnight and the bike went to Mama Tried in Milwaukee, where it was the filthiest show bike in attendance.
Our goal for March is building and organizing spare parts, dialing in logistics, and getting in more navigation training on the Lowrance GPS. April is coming up quick and we can’t wait!
For those that ask about the visor on the Lane Splitter helmets: It’s a Fox V2 that bolts right up with our hinge screws. It works great and allows us to use one of our helmets for this race.
Muchas Gracias to everyone who has pitched in on this project: