Travel Diary

Online Journal for the 'Right Around Australia' project.

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Sponsors

Torsten: One of the problems Ulick & I had to face when starting this project was that of self promotion. Not exactly a strong point for either of us, being the sort of people who like to keep our heads down and get the job done. But self promotion is a big part of any fundraising exercise and like it or not, had to put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboards) and beg.

Nine times out of ten, you receive a 'Thank you for your interest.. but unfortunately...", but every so often you get a positive response and an offer of support.

This has been a pretty amazing week for us as far as sponsorship goes with offers from a number of small Aussie business' offering products or services to help us get around. In addition to Aussie supporters we received an email from a company called S.I.P in Germany. S.I.P. are well known in Scooter circles, producing a range of their own special parts as well as stocking pretty much anything you could ever need for your scoot. They were keen to see us succeed and have offered to supply us with spares and other goodies. In addition they will run a feature on their website for their customers.

Discussions with our engineer friend about the luggage racks didn't go as well as we'd hoped. The end result was that he would do it, but for a ridiculous amount of money. The feeling that we get is that he's just not interested. But that's OK. We've been put in touch with a bloke who's both a bike nut and skilled welder, Paul Keys who's interested in helping us solve our problem.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Tyre Testing


Torsten: We went out to test some knobbies for the areas that will be short on tarmac this weekend. One concern we have though is that the profile of the tyres are so much lower than standard 3.50 rubber which makes for a pretty hard ride.

They did perform OK, in fact while sliding around with great confidence, I found myself getting a bit too cocky and managed to lose the front on a turn. The only thing damaged was my pride (and a small scrape to the side of the left cowl). Still this won't be the last 'off we'll have, especially up North. The knobbies will be great in the sand, but I think we need to find something more suitable for gravel.

Reading tyre reviews online pointed me towards Continental Navigators, an all weather tyre designed for wet and slippery surfaces. Some of the reviews tested the tyres on gravel and stated that they performed well. I called a few places, but they weren't much help so I thought I'd go straight to the distributor. They made it very clear that they didn't bring them in and had no interested in doing so, so it looks like I might have to source something from overseas. A pity as they seem like they would be a fantastic alround tyre, especially in the wetter parts of Oz down south, and even up here in Queensland in Summer for the stormy season.

We finally announced the trip on Scooter Messageboards we frequent, and the response has been nothing short of fantastic. Offers to stay, offers for help, offers for donations. Paul Mac from the Melbourne Scooter Connection has even offered to help organise a charity ride for when we leave Melbourne! I am frequently amazed by how supportive and giving the Australian Scooter community is.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Preparation...

Torsten: Planning is going fairly smoothly at the moment and we're not too far behind where we want to be.

Tomorrow we will be visiting one of our sponsors to get familiar with the equipment which we've been looking forward to. It's always better to put faces to people you've been talking with by phone or email.

Preparation of the bikes is going on schedule with a number of parts we can't get locally having been ordered from Germany, such as adjustable shocks, etc. The luggage racks however are proving to be a bit tricky, but a meeting is on the cards next weekend with an engineer friend of ours so hopefully we can get them sorted pretty soon.

We've received some more positive responses from potential sponsors but are still under our target for what we will need to get around Oz, but i'm sure we'll get there.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Helmet Camera

Ulls: I've been talking with a guy that distributes a brand of helmet camera we've been looking at for the trip. The idea behind it is that you connect the unit to a handycam and it gives you control while riding to film where you want to. It could provide us with some great shots. He's willing to give us one unit as sponsorship and a second unit at cost if we need one. We just need to work out a good time when Torsten isn't working so we can go down and visit the sponsor. That's been one of Torsten and my biggest problems getting this trip sorted out, his varying hours at work.