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Rocinante's upgrades
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01 New York
02 New England
03 Maine to Midland
04 Midland to Sturgis
05 Indians'n Cowboys
06 British Columbia
07 San Francisco
08 SF to San Diego
09 Baja to Canyons
10 Baja California
11 Northern Mexico
12 Mex. to Guatemala
13 Gua. to Costa Rica
14 CR to S. America
15 Ecuador
16 Peru and Bolivia
17 Chile
18 Patagonia
19 Argentina/Brasil
20 The road home
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Norwegian version

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Rocinante's Upgrades

At Classic Motorcycles in Tønsberg
The upgrades and checks on Rocinante was done at Classic Motorcycles in Tønsberg, paid by Colbjørnsen AS - the Norwegian Triumph Distributor. Geir's smile when we picked up the bike is assuring.

The list of suggested upgrades for Rocinantes, comprised from all the different helpful hints and tips we have received the last months, has grown to an arms length, at least. People have very different opinions of how much planning and preparation is necessary, and where some people would just go out and start the bike, shouting "I'll be gone a year or two", and then head off into the unknown, others prefer to do in depth planning of every step they will take and prepare for every possible situation, a process that takes months or even years if the journey they are about to embark upon is long and challenging. For the travelling experience, I would put my money on the first guy to get the most out of the trip, because he leaves with no expectations for the adventure. On the other hand, for coming through to the end, I would bet on the second guy. The solution is to find a place in between these two extremeties. Plan ahead, but don't overdo it. Sometimes I think we overdid it, sometimes I am relaxed and don't think too much about it. A bit of both worlds. Anyway, below is the upgrades done to Rocinante. Considering the weight she will carry, the length of the journey and the rough road conditions we can expect, is it overdone? Probably yes in some areas and no in others. Time will tell.



  • Forks raised 20mm and a 20mm preload spacer is inserted to reduce the diving when breaking and stabilize the front. A very cheap upgrade, all it costs is the PVC tube you need (37mm wide, at least 1.5mm thick)
  • Fork springs replaced with Triumph heavy duty springs
  • Fork oil replaced with heavier oil (12.5W) and slightly more than original
  • Rear shock spring stiffened up to maximum preload
  • Bagster tank cover protects the tank and is good when doing customary add-ons of tank panniers
  • Electrical connections and battery sealed for water protection (Note Oct 12th, 2000: Well, that was the plan, not done though)
  • Fuel filter fitted inline on the fuel hose
  • Bolts secured with Locktite or other means
  • Alternator bolts replaced with bolts of harder metal to stop them from unscrewing (this has been the only problem so far on Rocinante)
  • Scottoiler mounted to automatically lubricate the drive chain, which will hopefully prolong the life and definately save us the work of greasing it
  • Autocom intercom system installed (Eurocom model) with an on/off switch on the handlebar
  • Marine power outlet mounted in between the instruments, to connect battery chargers in the tank pannier for digital camera
  • The centre stand, which came as an add-on in the first place, is removed and replaced with a Liftstick jack-up that works with the side stand to lift either wheel off ground. The Liftstick is kept behind the right sidepanel, along the frame
  • Triumph/Givi 50 l topbox
  • Ortlieb tankbag 100% watertight, 13 l
  • Two Ortlieb tankbags used as tank panniers, 15 l each. (Note Oct 12th, 2000: Nope, wrong again. First we used bicycle panniers, later replaced by professional tank panniers from Aerostitch)
  • Touratech alu boxes, 35 l each
  • Alu boxes mounted with a strengthened Hepco Becker frame. The rear part of the frame has a steel plate welded over the weak bends, and a few added steel bars stiffens up the construction even more
  • Crash bars from Thunderbike fitted to protect the engine and paintwork in case, no, when I drop the bike
  • Simple bicycle computer mounted next to the speedo to give more detailed information on speed and a daily log
  • Triumph anti theft alarm (Note Oct 12th, 2000: No longer working, after a exaggerated washing of the bike)
  • * Small digital voltmeter will be mounted somewhere among the instruments to have "online" control on the voltage, added due to the extra electrical equipment that will draw power (chargers, intercom, maybe stronger headlights) (Note Oct 12th, 2000: Skipped since we didn't add much electrical gear)
  • * More powerful headlight bulbs? (Note Oct 12th, 2000: Skipped since we prefer driving at daytime..)
  • Corbin seat replaces the stock seat to improve comfort. It was later rebuilt by the Corbin factory to better suit our needs.
  • Throttlemeister locks the throttle in any position - added in USA
  • Heated grips with high and low setting for those cold days - added in USA
  • Aerostich tank panniers - Added in USA and replaces the bicycle bags
  • Tubular tool box - made from a 4 inch tube with rubber end caps and tightened with hose clamps - mounted on the engine guard right behind the front wheel carries the heaviest of the tools - added in USA

* = Remains to be done (Note Oct 12th, 2000: And will probably stay undone)

The Scottoiler reservoir is mounted on the left side, making it adjustable while on the road. Crashbars from Thunderbike to the left.

Spare parts located behind the fairing.

The Liftstick is hidden behind the right side panel


Sponsor notice:
Our sponsor Colbjørnsen AS, Norwegian distributor of Triumph Motorcycles, pays for the work for much of the above jobs and original Triumph spare parts. The work was done at Classic Motocycles in Tønsberg, my local Triumph dealer. Other sponsors are Mototema AS in Kristiansand, Norway, Aerostich Riderwearhouse in Duluth USA and TM-Accessories in Germany. Also Touratech in Germany gave us a decent discount on their boxes.


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