Mechanical failure

March 17th, Puerto Madryn to Commodore Ravadavia, 480km and then some!

Today could not been more filled with trials and rewards.  Not 2km from our hostel, El Gaulicho, the bike dies completely. Restart, then just out of town, again. So, back to the hostel with internet and a call to Andrew King from Retreat, the BMW guy who showed me the basics on the 1200 and serviced the bike. He is a star, immediately diagnoses the problem and effectively dooms the trip. The electronic fuel pump has packed up – easy to find and replace, if there is a dealer nearby!
The next call is to Ray Muller – yeah Andy, that’s the problem, check the net for a bypass!

So 3 hours later, i have stripped the fuel pump and hot wired the bits and pieces and she is running like a dream – we had one scare this evening at Commodore – I think we were actually running out of fuel 🙂 the worst thing that has happened is that the fuel consumption estimation has flaked out – who cares, we rode hard today in gale force wind for 5 hours with no problem! Poured 15l into the 17 l tank…….no wonder we cut out 🙂
Pretty cool that you can hotwire a R120 000 bike! For those not quite in the know; without this silly piece of electronics the bike is simply a piece of useless metal; engine won’t start, the display does not start, NOTHING!
THANK YOU RAY! And bugger to BMW for making a model with a known problem!

The circuit board is the culprit

The wind tried to blow us off the bike most of the day, this did not work, so the 8 degree ambient temperature tried to freeze us to death, this did not work, so the rain tried to wash us away – almost worked! Tired and frozen we roll into the oil-capital of Argentina – Commodore and find the first hotel; El Espanol. The reward – the night manager is Afrikaans!

So we spend the next day and night in Comodoro, 200km from Sarmiento the ‘Argentinian South African settlement’ from 1903! Most of the then farmers over essentially 2 generations have moved to this Coastal, oil producing town called Comodoro Ravadavia.

The hardships our ancestors went through are staggering. The wind howls here at up to 228km/hr, coldest recorded temperature in Arg in 1907! 10 feet of drift snow wiping out horses as they stand and decimating sheep herds.
If ever in was in any doubt as to the hardiness of the Voortrekkers – the life these people have made for themselves is a legacy to the iron in their blood!

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Categories: Diary | 4 Comments

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4 thoughts on “Mechanical failure

  1. Rosemary

    So good to hear all your news. Well done to Andrew for fixing the bike problem – it does sound like you are having fun…. Do take care!
    Love Rose xx

  2. Andy Cluver

    Andrew ,
    I have contacted all the BMW centres , and “YES” this is a problem with the 1200 (which they never tell you about) and I have bought the last one in Cape Town ?? Part no 16147720776
    Someone should write to the Bike Magazines and to get BMW to sort this out ???
    I will send this to part to Buenos Aires , and if u send me an address , it will be forwarded to you , as a spare of course after your “re design” of the BMW electronic system .
    General consensis re fuel , is carry what u can in fuel cans !

    Andy

  3. Nicholas van Esch

    Okay that is just crazy. Like my dad says. Many moons ago he could service is own car. Today you need a computer.. for almost everything… and when they break… you better go find a tree and have a rest 🙂

    Love
    Michael, Claudia and Nick

  4. Margy Gracey

    Good grief guys! It sounds like you are having fun! These posts are wonderful – really enjoying being able to keep up with your progress – on all fronts. Glad you solved the mechanical challenges …
    RIDE SAFE lots of love xxx

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