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A Getting Started Guide to Motorcycle Camping

As I sit on my deck, I look to the trees and bushes for the signs that the seasons are changing. Finally, slow signs of spring are before my eyes. Birds singing, the sea grasses turning green, and my thoughts go to another riding season and another season of motorcycle camping. Camping while touring on a motorcycle is a great way to visit new and exciting places. But, before you venture out into the world of motorcycle camping there are some things you need to know before you hit the trail.

Let’s break down the elements of this fun and exciting opportunity to become one with nature, meet new friends and bring home a lifetime of memories that can’t be matched.

Shelter, clothing, food, and motorcycle; when you boil it down these are the main ingredients that will determine if your experience on the open road is a success or a dismal disaster. Let’s take a look at each element individually and then put it all together to give you the basic roadmap for success while motorcycle camping. Shelter- Tents

Shelter is defined as something that covers or affords protection. The shelter that you use for camping can be nothing, just you under the stars, or a tent.

When considering a tent for motorcycle camping, look for a small light weight tent. The simplest and time tested option is a tarp and some rope. If you string your rope between two stationary objects (two trees, two motorcycles or a tree and a motorcycle) and drape the tarp over it, you have the foundation for a tent. Tie the corners down and you have a basic shelter. In the summer months this may be a good choice. The air flows through and provides ventilation and some summer cooling.



A-frame tent. A-frame style tent. Beyond the rope and tarp method, there are all types of tents available for camping. The most versatile is any tent that is designed for all four seasons. These tents are designed for all weather and retain your body heat in the winter and fall months. In the spring and summer they provide a pass through for air. Just a note of caution, they can be a little warmer in the warmer months. Four season tents are a more expensive alternative, but will last a lifetime if properly cared for. These types of tents are light, made for backpacking, and very compact. An excellent choice if you find that motorcycle camping is your real passion.

Typical all season tent. Typical all season tent. Regardless of what your preferred method of shelter is, you should be concerned about selecting a good camp site. You will need to survey the selected site and ensure that it is on level ground or a slight slope. Look around your perspective site for evidence of flooding or pooling of water. Ensure that there is good drainage in your site. You don’t want to set up your camp in an area that may flood in a sudden rain storm. A flooded camp site will cure your desire to ever camp again! Most importantly, look over head. Make sure that there are no overhanging limbs, branches or dead trees around. These can make a very bad night if one of them decides to fall while you are under it. Most of important of all: do not keep food in your shelter. If there is any wildlife in the area, uninvited and unwanted visitors in your shelter will not be a good experience…it will provide you with a great camping tale, but not a good experience. Your shelter is for you to sleep in and provide a refuge in the event of liquid sunshine (rain, or worse, snow).

Let’s talk about ground cloth, or the floor of the tent. If you use the tarp and rope method or a simple A-frame tent, make sure that you are not directly sleeping on the earth beneath the tent. The earth will simply suck the body heat out of you. Making you cold or worse develop hypothermia. Hypothermia (even in summer months) is caused by the rapid cooling of your body temperature. This will happen if you sleep directly on the earth. Always put a blanket or some form of insulation between you and the earth, your bed roll on top of the insulation. You’ll sleep much better and be rested when you awake. Believe me when I say there is nothing worse in the camping business as going to bed cold and waking up cold. This simple fact will ruin you appreciation for the great outdoors and camping in general.

Thinsulate sleeping bag lable. One of the many types of Thinsulate sleeping bags available today. This is a good place for a quick word about bed rolls or sleeping bags. With the use of “Thinsulate” thermal insulating material, modern sleeping bags are very small and light weight easily fitting into your saddle bag. This type of bag will keep you warm and comfortable in temperatures down to about 45ºF. This makes it an excellent choice for your summer motorcycle camping tour. Early spring and fall camping require different types of bedding materials that are for the more advanced campers and we just won’t go there here.

After all of that, we can boil down the real facts about this subject in a Do’s and Don’ts list.

DO:

Select a shelter that, either tarp and rope, A-Frame tent, or expedition type tent. Select a level or slightly sloped camp site. Look for signs of flooding or pooling water. Look for a site that has good drainage.

DON'T:

Pick a camp site that has dead limbs, branches or trees overhead. Keep food in you shelter. Sleep on un-insulated earth. Ignore signs of Hypothermia.

Clothing

The second basic element of camping consideration is clothing. In addition to your riding clothes, you’re going to have to bring at least one change of clothes for fun or lounging around the camp site.

You are going to know best what your destination activities will be and the clothing that you are going to need. So we are going to just talk about basics. To maximize comfort while motorcycle camping – dress in layers. You can always take clothes off, but if you don’t have the clothes on to take off, well, it can be an uncomfortable experience. When the day starts out cool and ends up warm, a typical layering could be a T-shirt, sweat shirt and jacket. As the day warms up, start to shed the layers. Without going into a lot of detail, here is my suggested packing list for clothing that I take with me:

Clothes to Pack Clothes to pack for your adventure. Space pak to save space. Organized for packing in "Space Pak" Packed clothes. Clothes packed in "Space Pak" My typical tour pack is two changes of underwear, two pairs of socks, three shirts (one long sleeve, one short sleeve and one sleeveless), one lite jacket, sweatshirt, a pair of shorts, a pair of long pants, wool stocking cap and comfortable camp shoes (flip-flops or sneakers). Does something in this list seam not quite right? Well, it may be the wool stocking cap. Even in summer, the human body loses body heat. Your body can lose up to 75% body heat through the top of your head during winter months. During the late spring and summer it can be as much as 45%. A wool stocking cap keeps the body heat in. The wool wicks the moisture away and is an excellent insulator. Wool will also keep you warm even when you’re wet.

In addition to all of that, you will need a choice of sleeping clothes. “Sleeping Clothes” are used exclusively for sleeping. Using sleeping clothes only for sleeping ensures that there is no food odor on your clothes. Food odor on your clothes will guarantee that if there is hungry wildlife around your camp site, you will be visited during the night.

We have talked about clothes for when everything goes right. Let’s talk about the unlikely event that all of your planning overlooked the fact that there was rain in the forecast. When motorcycle camping, you have two options, ride in the rain or sit it out. Either way, you will need rain gear. The best that I can tell you about rain gear is simply, get the best you can afford. Your rain gear should be strong, breathable and waterproof. Being dry in the wild is the key to happiness and enjoyment while camping.

All of this stuff gets packed into one of the fabulous space bags. You know the ones? The bags that reduce the size by removing the air by rolling the bags and sealing them. These are excellent waterproof containers for your camping adventures. They are easy to pack and reusable. You can use zip lock storage bags, but the space bags are heaver and made a little more durable.

Just a short diversion from our Primer, I would like to give you one example of a personal experience of how quickly the weather can change. While touring in New Mexico, crossing the San De Cristo Mountains, the day was warm and sunny in the mid 70’s. After a quiet evening around the campfire and everything secure for the night, I crawled into my tent only to be awakened, wet, freezing and frantically putting on clothes trying to get warm and digging my way out of my tent through three inches of snow. The morel of the story, the weather can change quickly and if you’re not ready for those quick changes you could be in serious trouble and facing the early and dangerous stages of hypothermia. “Be Prepared” my fellow campers.

We can now break down all of this information into a manageable Do and Don’t list.

DO:

Pack extra clothes. Dress in layers. Choose wool clothes. Pack your clothes in space bags to save room.

DON'T:

Sleep in the clothes that you cooked food in. Forget a wool stocking cap. Forget your rain gear. Ignore the conditions or signs of hypothermia.

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The Worlds 3 Most Expensive Limousines

What do big shot politicians, moguls and celebrities in the U.S. get to do daily on their way to work that average joes dont? The answer is something that naturally, only wealth and power can buy: travel in comfortable and luxurious rides. Limos and other upscale vehicles, indeed, signify a certain sense of prestige. They make up an industry worth four billion U.S. dollars in the entire country alone, and there are known to be over four thousand local companies that provide services with these rides.

You may not be able to afford using luxury vehicles every day, but theres definitely an opportunity in town to lease them for special occasions. If youd want to bring a group along for a luxury ride, rent a party bus and make your next birthday, bachelor or bachelorette party, wedding, prom or late night out extra fun and special! Use one of these to turn your journeys into unforgettable pre and after-parties. Trust us, youll end up getting a VIP experience thats similar to the big shots.

Below, we have listed the three limousines that are the industrys cream of the crop. Theyre known not just to be expensive but also, theyre designed with enviable features that youd think only existed in the movies. Its safe to say spending even just an hour in one of these would be a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

#3: The Beast (3,000,000 USD)

Its quite appropriate to call the limo that transports the current President of The United States a Beast this is not a vehicle to be messed with. Its extensive stored equipment includes shotguns, tear gas canisters, oxygen tanks and allegedly, grenade launchers. Its armored plates have enough resilience to block a rocket-propelled grenade. It has a maximum capacity of seven passengers, and five seats are in the back including the Presidents. The lead Secret Service agent takes the passenger seat at the front.

#2: The American Dream (4,000,000 USD)

This limo has reportedly been acknowledged as the worlds longest car by Guinness World Records. You probably wouldnt believe the all following details until you see the vehicle for yourself: a sun deck, a swimming pool, a heated Jacuzzi, a couple of real beds, a total of 26 tires and a helipad! This is a prized possession of the company named Jay Ohrberg Star Cars, which has produced many original automobiles and replicas. Several of those were used in the production of films such as the Back to the Future trilogy, Starsky and Hutch, Batman Returns and The Flintstones.

#1: The Batmobile (4,200,000 USD)

And the king of our list goes to the real-life version of the famous Batman ride, fitting named the Batmobile. All those flashy and kick-ass tools, which the original Batmobile in the 80s and 90s films had, are included in this one. It has rear flaps that help the brakes in slowing the vehicle down. Theres a jet engine as well as back and front wheels that can be ejected. Its also capable of launching rockets and missiles. The inspiration behind its one-of-a-kind design is the Corvette. Needless to say, its a pretty far cry from your everyday limo. Owning it would make you feel like James Bond.

Personal Hovercraft Skirt Material

Once upon a time hovercraft skirt material was just an afterthought, something added to contain the air pressure generated by the lift propellers above the hull. Indeed, the first hovercraft were simple affairs that didn't need much design finesse to make them work. The other thing was that the variety of material just wasn't there in the early days of the industry. The toughest thing around was probably rip stop sail cloth, which was amply used for all manner and sizes of sailing boats. The material is called 'rip stop' because it does exactly that - the very structure of the material stop any tear form extending, which is achieved by laying different layers of fabric across each other.

In any piece of fabric or soft material made in one layer, a tear will likely promulgate and get progressively worse, if the force that caused it continues. Now imagine two or three layers of the same material bonded together at an angle. When a rip is started and extends one way in one layer of material, the next layer opposes it and it tends to go nowhere, unless of course the force applied is enormous. This is still the principle used in modern skirt fabrication for small personal hovercraft, but the materials are very different.

As well as the employment of new materials, the way in which the whole skirt assembly is created and attached has been radically revised. One manufacturer of leisure hovercraft gives a prize for a special test that they invite any member of the public to perform. A piece of their hovercraft skirt material is cut with a knife, so that each half can be gripped easily with the hands - hovercraft kits and plans. The challenge is simply that anyone succeeding to rip or tear the material any further than the cut will win a huge bottle of the best champagne. Admittedly not a fortune, but it does show considerable confidence in the material used for this use.



Present day personal hovercraft skirts are made from either Kevlar, which is the bullet proof fabric used by the military, or rip stop nylon covered in flexible neoprene. Even though the material is very tough, anything can be destroyed in the right circumstances and one manufacturer has come up with a way of minimizing the hassle of a damaged hovercraft skirt. The company has separated it into several sections, so that if one part is damaged at all, the whole thing doesn't have to be changed.

Agm Battery Technology Basics

An AGM battery is an absorbed glass mat product. It is often confused with gel cell battery products. Each type has similar aspects like being unable to be spilled, being able to be mounted in any fashion and being capable of being used in areas with limited ventilation. They are also capable of deep cycling and having low self-discharges.

The glass mat of an AGM battery is made to take the electrolytes from the battery and wet the mat just enough to keep the battery running. With gel batteries, there is a silica gel between the electrolyte that lets electrons flow in between the plates.

AGMs tend to be favored over gel cells. It is the best type to use when a high degree of amps are needed. If these batteries are not discharged more than half their full capability over time they can last for many years. Deep cycle abilities vary with the individual AGM product.

AGM batteries recharge much faster than gel batteries do. They also cost about the same as the gel formats. It should be noted that just because a product is labeled as AGM it does not necessarily mean that it is a deep cycle battery.

The manufacturer of the product will indicate if the AGM is a starting battery or if it is any other type of non-deep cycle type of battery. The product usually will have the same ability to benefit the user as most AGMs do, but they cannot function as deep cycle batteries alone. The plate thickness of the product is what dictates whether or not it is deep cycle.

Among the top makers of these batteries is Concorde. They make a line of AGMs that include the Sun Xtender, the Lifeline, and the Chairman. The Sun Xtender has a bolt on terminal rather than a post terminal. This gives the battery a better, more reliable connection.

These batteries can be used for marine applications, they can be used in RVs and they are well suited to use in wheelchairs, too. Choosing a battery should be based on how much efficiency it can offer. Look for the amount of internal resistance that the battery has. Also, note its total charge and discharge abilities and its ability to deliver high currents without dropping voltage. If you are picking out an AGM for the first time, stick to brands that have proven performance.



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