STAR 2011 trip report - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 07-08-2011, 02:17 PM Thread Starter
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STAR 2011 trip report

I wanted to post a little info about my trip from St. Louis to the STAR rally in Johnson City Tennessee. As on many of my forays there was good and bad. My wife and I rode with a friend and his wife there on mostly two lane roads. It was a good trip until we got within a coupe of hours from Johnson City. My friend informed me that my brake lights were not working. On inspection nether were my rear turn signals. I figured that I knew the problem as I had had issues before after using a tail light converter. I added a set of hard saddlebags that had built in single bulb two element lights. I removed the Versys turn signals and using the converter re-wired the bike so that the lights in the saddlebags not only served as turn signals but also additional brake lights. The first time wired this setup I used a converter purchased from U-Haul. It lasted 2 weeks, tried another and this one lasted longerÖ.3 weeks. I ordered another brand from ĎThe hitch StoreĒ and this one held up but I figured it had finally given up the ghost. After getting to Johnson City and getting a hotel I went to the parking lot and removed the Vís seat. It was certainly easy to spot what was wrong. The accessory wiring box that I installed to make it easier to wire up accessories was burned to a crisp. While I was attempting to get everything torn out a man pulled up in a pickup truck and parked next to me. When he got out he asked if there was anything he could do. I said that if he had any tools I would be much obliged. He answered that as soon as he got his family in their room he would be right back. Five minutes later he returned and got his BIG tool box out of his truck. It turns out he was an industrial engineer but neither of us had a multi-meter though so the diagnosis consisted of looking at where the wires went. Finally we got wired it so that I had power to the tail lights and brake lights. The only trouble was that with the key off they were still on. The solution we came up with was to wire in an inline fuse from an auto parts store so that I could pull the fuse when the bike was parked. He told me of a friend of his in Knoxville that he was sure could fix it properly. The next day Ning and I went for a ride around the area as suggested by one of the route maps provided by the MSTA. Got lost, found some GREAT roads and beautiful scenery and had a great day anyway. The next day we left for Knoxville hoping to get the V fixed properly. Got lucky as I just picked a random exit and after a block saw an Enterprise car rental agency and figured they would have maps. They didnít but they said that there was a tourist bureau just a block away. We go a map and great instructions to get to the shop and it turned out that I had lucked out and actually picked the closest freeway exit. Arriving at the Electrical Connection we were greeted warmly. The man I met in the hotel parking lot that told me about the place has called them and told them to expect us. As luck would have it the Electrical Connection is a business that specializes in electrical components for motorcycles and owner go right to work on my bike. He had everything needed in stock and after finding that I also had a bad light bulb socket (that took a while to find) he had us all fixed up. He spent close to 2 hours all together and the total bill including parts was only $108.00. When I expressed surprise that I wasnít being held up he informed me that although he would like to be a millionaire that he didnít plan to make it of off just one person. Because the wiring was completely non-stock I doubt that there is 1 in 10 motorcycle shops that would have had some with enough electrical knowledge to fix it and I know they would not have had the after market parts required. I guess the moral of this story is that itís a lot better to be lucky than just smart. The Electrical Connection has all types of goodies for motorcycles and know what they are doing so I canít recommend them highly enough.

http://www.electricalconnection.com/
tech help: 865.219.9192
order line: 800.215.6168
facsimile: 865.219.9292
3300 Rifle Range Rd, Suite A, Knoxville, TN, 37918

Ning and I

Backbone Dam Tunnel

Ning at the top of Deal's Gap (The Dragon)
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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 07-08-2011, 02:22 PM Thread Starter
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