Saturday, May 18, 2013

Uraling in Alaska - Day 40: Parts and Sun are Here

True to form, both the parts and sunshine arrived in Valdez, AK today.  So, while I now have the parts, the rainy ride test environment was gone by the time I had the replacement coil mounted!  Sigh.

I rode about the town in the morning, killing time and checking out how Valencia was riding now that the rain had stopped.  It was still very overcast, and a very, very,  light sprinkling of rain to keep things damp, but nothing like the last few days in terms of wetness.

So of course, Valencia ran just fine!  No ignition/misfiring issues to report.  It's like with the return of good weather, things just resolved themselves.

 Along Egan Avenue, sort of Valdez's main street, one can see the above fish

 They move the average 300 inches of snow in Valdez onto big piles, off
the main roads, here's one of the piles, plowed through to clear the
walking path the snow was piled onto over the winter.

 The view this morning, with misty clouds overlaying the dimly visible
peaks across the bay, from the parking lot at the Valdez Ferry Terminal

 Still near the Valdez Ferry Terminal, a glimpse of the nearby mountains.

 Folks learning to handle kayaks in the frigid waters of the bay

A brief window in the morning when nearby tops of peaks were 
visible to folks in Valdez.

The parts were reported as "delivered" at 9:25 AM, trouble is, delivered meant that they were sitting in the Innkeeper's mailbox at the local post office and he didn't return from church till close to 2:00PM!  Basically, the hotel staff was MIA from 11:00AM through about 1:00 PM for church or whatever.  The seasonal help was there but of course no access to the innkeeper.

Finally, they got hold of the innkeeper, he swung by the post office before rushing off somewhere else and he dropped off the box from Raceway Services!

By 2:30 PM, I had removed the old coil only, and replaced it with the new one.  Nothing else has changed, still using same old control unit and spark plug wires.

Did I mention sunnier weather had arrived?  Yep, nice and sunny with temperatures in the low 40s but feeling much warmer.  I still went out for a test ride to make sure the new coil was working, regardless of the fact that with no rain, not a real test of things being fixed.

 Hey look, there's mountains near Valdez!  Who would have believed it?

 A view of Valdez from across the bay on Dayville road

 More mountain views along Dayville Road

When I returned from taking pictures and test riding (Valencia did great of course, it's sunny), I used a water hose and while the engine was running and transmission in neutral, I sprayed the coil and front cover area of the engine down with water for a good five minutes.  No issues, everything seemed fine.

Now, before you ask, did I think this morning to do this same test with the old coil mounted?  Nope.

Am I going to mount the old coil and do the same test?  Nope.

The plan is, to only replace one component at a time, next rainy ride, if the symptoms surface again, I'll replace the control module/encoder disk.  If that still doesn't do the trick, then the spark plugs are next.  After that, there's nothing else to replace and it'll be time for the Ducati ignition to be placed back onto Valencia I think.

Tonight, it's dinner with Brad, the fellow ADV rider who showed up yesterday in Valdez riding his Kawasaki KLR650 motorcycle.  We will discuss options, we're leaning towards riding back up Thompson Pass and along the Glen Highway towards Anchorage.  If we do this, I will most likely forego McCarthy town for now as Brad has already done it and I don't want to go to it alone till I have more faith restored in Valencia.

The other option is to cough up about $150 each, and take the morning ferry to Whittier from Valdez which will put us within 65 miles of Anchorage where he's got parts waiting to fix a damaged pannier mount and choke cable and the URAL dealer is in case things start acting up on Valencia.

 We saw the above eagle as we walked to the "Fat Mermaid", 
a nearby pub.

This was the view from our dinner table at the Fat Mermaid,
not too shabby eh?


Unknown said...


so far all is lookin good . . .

those are great photos with all that snow, and mountains in the background.

Riding the Wet Coast

GlennandSun said...

Yesssss! Great news, I believe you have it pegged now. Nice to have a riding companion after what you have been through, but based on your many descriptions of the developing problems, it sounds like the problem is solved. Note I am making to myself: add coil to spares list to carry in rig.
Great photos...that is a big pile of snow and big fish too....we really do not like driving long distance with snow on the ground, but your photos are so good and the lack of crowded roads makes us long for an early start up to Alaska next year too.
Nothing like riding to restore your confidence in Valencia and the reliability of her ride. Enjoy, GlennandSun

RichardM said...

Glad you were able to see the mythical mountains around Valdez. Were you able to see any of the waterfalls in the canyon? It'll be interesting to see what you decide to do now that you have the spares in hand. Does the Loktited screw make swapping in the new electronics and disc more difficult?

SonjaM said...

I hope that the problem is now fixed for once and all, and your faith in Valencia will be restored again.

Well, you've got company and a nice scenery (once the clouds part). So it is not too bad methinks.

Keith - Circle Blue said...

I am glad you will have a riding companion. Hopefully, all is well and you are on the brink of a long spell of gremlin free travel, still it can't hurt to have someone along side.

I do so hope this takes care of the trouble. Sad to make an upgrade and have so much trouble. It will be even sadder if you have to go back to the original parts.

redlegsrides said...

My apologies for being behind with my replies.

Thanks Bob for the kind words.

GlennandSun, having a riding companion was a comfort, and then he developed slight carburetor issues! It all worked out though.

RichardM, saw the waterfalls but they were in the didn't come out well at all. The locktited screw is not a hindrance to replacing the electronics module as it sits on top of the metal adapter that is secured by the screws in question.

SonjaM, she's been running great...of course, it's been sunny since I got the new parts.....

Keith, I intend to swap in one new replacement component at a time if conditions return in the next rainy ride. There's also suspicion of the air filter by Raceway Services....we shall see.