- Left – 11.15am
- 2nd May 2015
- Miles rode – 172 (275km)
Up early at 6.30 and ready to cover some miles today.
The battery was flat! Doh.
I don’t believe in ‘divine intervention’ but as I walked out of the homestay there were two of the most muscular body builders I’ve seen in a year! Push start please? These two Indonesian Goliaths made the job look easy but as the road was wet we couldn’t get the bike to grip as I released the clutch, even with me jumping hard as I released. They tried and tried but it wouldn’t start!
Dilemma – do I order a new battery and stay here for however many days or get it charged. A guy from the homestay took me to a local garage where I left the battery on charge for a couple of hours.
Now, about that dilemma. I couldn’t find the right size or type of battery anywhere so I called BMW Bali who have one but said it would take 4 days to deliver as they can’t air freight it as its a battery, so by road a long time…
Just as I pulled away at 11.15 Tono pulled up on his Vespa, he had heard that I had a problem and came to help, what a great guy.
Would the battery keep its charge and where would I end up, on the side of the road? After about an hour the engine lost power at low and high revs , I pulled over but kept the engine running as I wanted to keep the charge and noticed that there were sparks coming from the top of one of the spark plugs to the engine case! I was so pissed off I couldn’t care what further damage was done so I rode on. The problem persisted for another hour and then returned to full power? Yes, carrying on was a stupid thing to do as further damage was likely but I really didn’t care. I did care of course, the last thing I want is a knackered motorbike and expensive repair bills but I had always envisaged there would be at least one occasion on this trip when something drastic would occur and the resulting cost would be high.
Bali was 500 miles (800km) away and there was a BMW dealer there. I don’t use BMW dealers, in fact all servicing and breakdowns have been carried out by local mechanics and my enthusiasm. The bike needs a professional not only for a good service and repairs but it needs an overhaul. I was going to wait until Australia before I spent the money but it’s long overdue so whether I ride there or push it there my Dakar will get to Bali!
I arrived in Yogyakarta in the dark and all the hotels were full except a really rubbish one so it topped off a bad day. Will the Dakar start in the morning? If it does how long before it breaks down?