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small Black Forest tour 2018

Discussion in 'Owners Bikes' started by Ocatoro, Jul 19, 2018.

  1. Ocatoro

    Ocatoro Registered User Read Only

    managed to find a new bike just in time for a long-planned short tour of the German Black Forest...

    2 weeks before was cutting it fine, and with hindsight, I'd have liked another couple of weeks to get a couple more jobs done... but it went surprisingly well save for a developing wobble through the handlebars which only really affected the ride home (thankfully).

    here she was on the day I collected her... came with some nice touring bits already, 12v socket, full luggage, screen, vfr handlebars (I think), and fatter seat.
    [​IMG]IMG_20180630_124738 by Dan Ciminera, on Flickr

    basic checks were done. oil was ok... would have liked to have changed it, but didin't want fresh oil loosening any crud which may or may not have been present just before leaving. chain checked, cleaned and set right to go, brakes checked, tyre pressures, yadda yadda. Went with the stock seat in the end as it had clearly barely ever been ridden on and seemed the more immediately comfortable on the road in the few hundred miles I managed before setting off.

    anyway, set off with friend Chris on his aprilia futura (1000 v-twin, rotax engine same as used in the mille sports bike), we have been doing car tours since doing a banger rally across to turin in our teens many moons ago and having been riding for a good few years now and always having said we'd visit the black forest after passing through it so many times en route to Switzerland... we booked a ferry last autumn and saw it through!

    We'd gone on night time ferry after working all day so we just did a short stint to Roncq just north of Lille and checked into the local Premiere Classe £25 digs for the night at 2am to get some shut-eye ready for the long ride the next morning.

    We headed back up into Belgium to use the free roads and followed down through Luxembourg and then down through Strasbourg (very pretty place) for the Rhine crossing into Germany and on to Wolfach where we'd booked a cheap apartment on a deer farm.

    Somewhere along the way in Belgium/France, having a little leg stretch. On one of these stops we met a weary young lady on a Dakar edition BMW GS making her way to Greece over the course of 11 days. hat off to her.
    [​IMG]IMG_20180716_232344_607 by Dan Ciminera, on Flickr

    Made it to the German digs without any fuss, just aches and tiredness. Should have taken the day off work beforehand. Lesson learned. Converted barn type situation with some apartments in... extremely cheap for the apartment regardless of number of guests, we were 2, but were 5 beds if we'd brought more friends along. The breakfast room, or room of death, as we quickly dubbed it.
    [​IMG]IMG_20180714_090636 by Dan Ciminera, on Flickr

    Continental fare, as expected. additional £3 a day and the lady asks you very literally "do you need an egg?", each morning before her grandad shuffles past and chuckles to himself, seemingly at our expense. excellent freshly ground coffee, homemade jams, and eggs from their farm.
    [​IMG]IMG_20180714_093918 by Dan Ciminera, on Flickr

    link to the hotel if you're interested... (we definitely will stay there again) https://www.agoda.com/en-gb/josenhof/hotel/wolfach-de.html?cid=-217

    they even gave us our own garage to keep the bikes in
    [​IMG]IMG_20180714_101815 by Dan Ciminera, on Flickr

    our first full day of riding saw us head out down the B500 south all the way down to Swiss Koblenz (we didn't bother crossing the border this time) with a very nice cake-stop at the Dorfschmeide cafe in Hochenschwand. I'd been here before in the car and knew the cake was magnificent.
    [​IMG]IMG_20180716_232646_745 by Dan Ciminera, on Flickr

    suitably pigged out after being unable to whittle down my choices any further.
    [​IMG]IMG_20180714_143110_1 by Dan Ciminera, on Flickr

    after we reached the bottom of the B500, we snaked our way back up on some of the offshoot roads. some of the surfaces were iffy, but the hairpins and views were spectacular.
    [​IMG]IMG_20180714_223919_367 by Dan Ciminera, on Flickr

    we found a nice bike-friendly restaurant/bar/hotel in Gutach on the way back for the evening and pulled in for obligatory schnitzel-stop. There was a waitress with excellent English so we got on just fine there and were looked after. We went back the next evening too.
    [​IMG]IMG_20180714_201046 by Dan Ciminera, on Flickr

    The Aprilia had seemingly shat it's clutch fluid during the day leaving Chris with a toe-blister from stiff clutchless riding all day.
    Luckily the hotel folk were bikers, who promptly gave us some brake fluid and I'd had the forethought to pack a little bleed valve in my tool roll at the last minute.
    [​IMG]IMG_20180715_104003 by Dan Ciminera, on Flickr

    after bleeding, the Aprilia was back to 100% again so we headed off this time up the B500 north, to Baden-Baden before snaking our way around it like a helix on some more windy switchbacky roads with a wurst-stop at a biker hut on a reservoir called Schwarzenbachtalsperre and a cake-stop in Oppenau before then heading all the way back up and back down the B500 and shooting back down to Gutach for tea.

    [​IMG]IMG_20180715_145941 by Dan Ciminera, on Flickr

    [​IMG]IMG_20180715_225005_568 by Dan Ciminera, on Flickr

    [​IMG]IMG_20180715_224900_982 by Dan Ciminera, on Flickr

    [​IMG]IMG_20180716_233305_642 by Dan Ciminera, on Flickr

    [​IMG]IMG_20180716_233056_746 by Dan Ciminera, on Flickr

    heading back we decided on a change of scenery and found an airbnb in Bauvin, also just by Lille. easy to find, nice quiet little town with pubs, food, 3 small bike shops, fuel... everything you need going to and from the ferry and only an hour and 10 mins from Dunkirk ferry terminal.
    nice little chalet out the back of the house, with another wonky, Alice in Wonderland feeling cabin. The fella is a biker and was in his element chatting bikes and showing us about his garage with harley, thunderace, ducati 800ss, and an r80 bmw race bike. photos of his racing exploits all over the cabins was a nice touch.
    [​IMG]IMG_20180716_165548 by Dan Ciminera, on Flickr

    if youre interested, here's a link

    all in all, a very nice trip was had, and looking forward to more of the same in the future now I've broken my bike tour duck.
    • Cool Cool x 4
  2. andyBeaker

    andyBeaker Moderator Staff Member Moderator Club Sponsor

    Good stuff.

    And all that withoutbthe charging circuit letting go!

    I would give the non- standard seat you have another go - both the of mine made the standard seat feel like a plank after I used them.
  3. Ocatoro

    Ocatoro Registered User Read Only

    I did give it about 150 miles when collecting the bike... and I found the edges were digging into my inner thighs a little. it also appears to have been on the bike for the majority of the bikes life, so it's the more tired of the two in terms of padding. after the first day of just being tired and irritable, the stock seat actually turned out to be fairly plush. the ride back was lovely.

    I have a receipt for a new reg/rec a year or so ago, so I didn't have any worries there.
  4. andyBeaker

    andyBeaker Moderator Staff Member Moderator Club Sponsor



    You'll learn.......!

    Sorry, couldn't resist it.

    If I may be so bold I would suggest taking a spare reg/reg and generator with you if you go touring, especialy abroad where you are likely to have problems sourcing them if needed. A quick trawl through the Help section will evidence that the charging circuit on Birds is it's Achilles Heel, although in fairness some have no problem at all. The fact that the reg/ref has been replaced on your bike indicates there has been a problem, and it is common for all three components in the charging system (aforementioned plus battery) to be part of a systemic failure.

    Either way, you can guarantee if you carry the spare parts mentioned above you will never need them! It's the law. Many fit a cheap voltmeter and/or led voltage warning light as an easy way on keeping an eye on the charging system.

    Can't tell what year your Bird is, but also suggest having a look at the 'loom fix' thread at the top of the Help,section - if your bike is one of those 'affected' make sure you get the fix done if not done already - essential preventative maintenance.
    • Cool Cool x 1
  5. Ocatoro

    Ocatoro Registered User Read Only

    Cheers for the advice. I'll look into it.
  6. Jaws

    Jaws Corporal CockUp Staff Member Moderator Club Sponsor

    A really excellent write up
    Thoroughly enjoyed it..... thank you :)
    • Like Like x 1
  7. Jason Kingsley-Brown

    Jason Kingsley-Brown Registered User

    I did the Black Forest tour last year too, June 2018.

    Easier trip for me, as my father lives in the area. So I had a base camp and didn't have to carry everything with me.

    Did 2000 miles over the 10 days I was there, all round the forest. Went down the B500 too, bit of a let down as they've put speed restrictions everywhere.

    Schramberg, Saint Georgen, Rottweil and Triberg are lovely and the roads are really twisty.

    Recommend it to everyone

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