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Monday, April 03, 2006

Experienced Rider Course (ERC)

This past weekend, I took the Experienced Rider Course at The Danville Community College. Four of us met at the 619 Minute Market in Rocky Mount (Bill, Bill, Hank and I) and rode down Sontag Road and over Turkey Cock Mountain and eventually ended up in Danville.

I was the only Yamaha Vision (No Surprise There) among 2 KLRs, 4 Harleys and the rest were Goldwings. The course was all riding. The only time we were in the class room was at the very beginning and the very end of the course. The ERC started out with some slow speed cornering exercises and then some weaving exercises, designed to avoid road debris. We then moved on to some sweeping curve courses, including emergency stopping in a curve. We broke for lunch and ate at Short Sugar's BBQ (I highly recommend this place when you're in Danville). After lunch, we picked up the pace a little (15-20 mph) and did some decreasing radius turns and unpredictable stopping and some more weaving. The very last exercise was a mini EVOC of sorts. Oh, the EVOC was all kinds of fun. The First Harley rider went around the course scrapping his floorboards all the way around. Three riders worked the course at a time. I was the lead rider in my group and quickly came up behind the last rider. Unfortunately, we were not allowed to pass. My 1st lap was lots o' fun, the next three laps, I tried slowing way down to let the rider in front gain some distance, but it wasn't enough. I did however, get to lean the Vision over far enough to create some wear right to the edge of the rear tire (Too bad it was at a max speed of about 20-25 mph).

As for the Vision... She performed quite well. No problems with handling, except maybe an ever so slight slack in the throttle cable when "rolling on" on the apex of the curve. I was more concerned about the engine temperature and the charging system. On more than one occasion, the temperature needle was up, just under, the red. Several times, I would park the bike between courses and the fan would kick on. The voltage while running the course was also up in the area of 15.7 volts. This of course made me very nervous. Every now and again, the volts would come back down to about 14.7 volts (so, I knew the Regulator/Rectifier was working), but still high for my normal 13.9 volts. We did have one Goldwing crap out their charging system. He had to buy a new battery to finish the course.

The ride home brought all my gauges back to where they should be, which was a big relief. On the way home, Bill, Hank and I took Rt.41 out of Danville to Sago Road to Snow Creek Road to Sontag Road back to Rocky Mount. All in all a very good day with a total of about 155 miles, including the ERC Course.

just shows that the vision can still give um hell.
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