Tuesday, March 01, 2005

B'lore-Chennai-B'lore 1day (T)RIP!!!

Yes Bangalore - Chennai - Bangalore in one day.
3 gyes, 3 bikes, 702 KMs, 15 hrs.

Following Trip log by Nithin Nath>>>>
Ok, we did it... three of us.. Heroes.. On our hondas... err.. Three of us On our hero hondas. A Bangalore-Chennai-bangalore in a day. It's a very loooong trip log as usual from my side.. I've tried not to bore u guys down. ;-)

Date: 27.02.2005
Destination: no idea.... Chennai, or point of return - wherever we were by 12:30pm.
Meeting point: MG Rd petrol bunk @ 5:15AM
Men n machines -
Badri on his 2004(Feb14!!!) model Black n yellow Ambition 135 lovingly called lovely Ambition aka Lamb - Disc brakes
Praveen on his 7month old(new) Black n red n silver CBZ* with self-start- Disc brakes
Nithin (me!) on his July 2000 model Silver CBZ aka Quixilver aka Quixie- Disc brakes??? No way.. Shoes for me,a new set!
Mods... well just my bike.. She has 4" Michelins at the back, other two are stock.

After a breif rounda checkups n fillin our tanks to the brim, we leave for chennai thru crowded(!) city traffic at 5:40am in b'lore. As routine, we kept our headlamps switched on for entire trip to help trace eachother. As usual, in case one of them needed to stop.. He just stopped and the guys n front wud come back if they cudnt find him on their RVMs. Its impossible to overtake to tell him I need to stop Oncommin trucks din spare a thought on dipping their beams, and we were doing speeds under 80. Badri n me had specs, so the wonderful panorama of lights ensured we stick behing praveen's tail lamp.As we expected, Badri was trying to keep pace with us... well... let me not speak more.

7:15am - we take a break after Kolar for tea. It was brrrringly cold and even a pee break needed a warmup jog! Start at 7:40am after a warning lecture from Badri as to how horrible the truck drivers are and how he heroicaly saved his Tata sierra once from becoming junk! The scare kept us alert for sudden bends, n trucks, n ***s, n kids , n monkeys... n wot not. Then myself n Praveen cracked a joke which we will regret rest of our lives! The joke?? Well. We thought we'd limit ourselves from speeds above 80kmph so that Badri wudnt struggle to keep pace and considering Badri's point that after 10am, chennai temperature is higher and natural engine cooling will be less n hence his bike would struggle....

From then on.... It was an eventful journey that made me swallow few of my words. Do you know, I hate being overtaken when I am maxed out.. It makes me feel I'd buy a new ZMA or a Comet, and Praveen kept getting the better of me. The wind was against us, so was the sun. that meant max speed was under 100kmph. And we needed to bend down to get the aerodynamic advantage and gain a few more kms on speedo. It was the only act that helped us since the rpm wudnt budge unless helped by some air deflection. My leather jacket seemed to trap more air than praveens, so at 100 I max out n praveen overtakes me by hiding himself behind the visor... doing that for 700kms meant u get a sprained neck,spine n arms! And .. Did I forget about the lamb?? Badri was doing some spirited riding and kept us on our toes. He managed to keep head-to-head with me in the 90s. And gave me some challenge overtaking him. So the sequence kept changin on the one way track and we took turns in the lead position.

8:40am, we break for break fast for 50mins... after a photo session, we enter Andhra and ignore the 101 GoSlow! Boards only to find that, they really meant bussiness. What with so many barricades on the road, I had to do double job to brake using my drums! And the 'tuning' of carb n front forks by HH serive guy ensured an extremely wavery steering and occassional scares at bends with th eleft shock getting stuck up. Talk of bends, and for around 2kms, you have some real good ones and u can take them at 100 plus easily on these bikes. Then you have nearly 50-80kms of pure paradise... absolutely well laid flatout roads which made me think why everybody doesn't own a CBR.

What shook our hi-speed confidence levels was the unimaginably senseless drivers in the TN busses who scared the hell outta us and on few occassions, we were lucky even though had to get off the road. But we never got real challenges from any fast cars and the fastest bikes we encountered were Calibers... At 10:25am we stop for fillin fuel @ Reliance bunk(for 15mins).. Fuel is 3Rs cheaper in Chennai. So tankfull for Badri n we push off.

By 11:25am we reach out-skirts of Chennai and stop to call up Terry (CBZ) n one of Badri's friend and decide to meet at Spencer Plaza. We had done around 315kms by now. Then on the roads are dusty and thru villages and speeds above 70 wer outta Qn. Reached Spencer Plaza by 12:20PM. Had some snacks n met Terry n Badri's friend. Then after getting funny qns like "u came all the way to see spencer palza?" etc, we leave for Bangalore at 1:40PM and ask for route and get lost! Alls well that ends well and the brothers in arms reunite and after finall fillup, we leave at 2:15PM. By 3:10PM we are outside chennai.

Then ... the surprise package was opened!! The CBZians planned to rip and fought it out on the flat straights with Honda Accords,Palios and other fast cars. We reach the adrinaline pumping flat one way road..and decide to rip!.. The little Lamb, we knew wud have a tough time catching up. Wel.. unwary of the fact that we had underestimated the 135cc lady... lamb did I say??? It was a wolf hiding behind a Lamb skin man!!!

I was leading the pack at 100 and since wind was behind and bike n road has becoem more familiar, I ripped max at 110 without the aid of aerodynamics.. And Praveen did pretty good to overtake me and stay ahead and we kept swapping positions. Praveen about 10mts ahead of me and the gap is constant, I am slightly bending down and my engine screming at 8500RPM and speedo just above 110kmph ..... I find the familiar, CBZ headlamp, glowing in my RVM and I knew praveen is about to overtake me... but then, he is ahead of me aint he?? Well, CBZians, picture this... A CBZ, maxed out at 110kmph... and then... an ambition overtakes it with breeeze!!!!!!!!!!! Yes... I tried my best and ripped hard only happlessly and found Badri getting further away from me! Through my mind... were runnin a 100 calcuations. A 132kg bike + a 50kg rider (that's me) with 12.8PS and a 126kg bike + 75kg Badri with 11PS... power:weight ratio of 70PS/Ton vs 55PS/Ton.. how could he??? Man how could he??? Well... if it wasn't enough, he went on to take pangaa with Praveen!!! And praveen( who Is in disbeleif) had to 'bend over'(read - use aerodynamics) to accept defeat Badri might have though"Well, if he has bend over...I shouldn't screw him anymore" and let go..

There is a similar calculation runnin in Praveen's mind aswell, but on diff units ...(earlier he thought 15k more and I cud have got an ZMA)......15k man ...was it worth over the ambition! Such was the devastating effect that, I had to pull off a never before attempt when a slight incline helped slow down Badri. Then I overtook him and on a flat, unimaginable to me, with aerodynamics(no.. My jacket is in Praveen's bag!), I manage just under 120kmph with engine just at 9000rpm..... And the joy was enormous.. But..... short lived when I saw Badri right beside me when I just slowed to 116-117, and Praveen was just behind doing lil above 115 and redlined at 10,500rpm !

I said to myself F$#K me if I ever said Ambition was a bike with neither performance of economy! I take back my words. OD guys r mad when they say an ambition tops out at 99kmph and a CBZ at 110kmph. Ok considering the speedo error(though they r pretty accurate upto 80s on CBZ/ZMA/AMB) suppose at 120, I was actually doing 110, then still how come the Lamb did 110???

Man.. They ARE doing a big mistake by phasing out the ambition.. I feel its just the case of poor advertising. Accepted, she is not rocket froom 0-60 compaed to a CBZ or Pulsar.. Did I say pulsar? Ok by now u'd be thinkin a P150 with 143cc 11.8PS is comparable to Amb135? Well ...u cant compare.. Now pulsar guys, Beat it! Badri was chased by two P150s enroute to B'lore and they never made it against a relaxed Badri crusing at 110kmph!

Phew! We stop at 5PM for snacks... and expressed our disbelief..

Our daylight saving didn't seem to work out and we had a long stop at 6:15pm when Badri said his bike got seized!! We wait for nearly 45mins and let the overtaken ones overtake us as we watch Badri smiling away in loneliness... we thought, ok so a 133cc bike seizes if pushed hard!! NO! crazy fellow that he was, din realise his bike had gone to reserve! We leave for B'lore with another 120kms ahead of us and realise how equally enticing and dangerous it is to ride in pitch black night at 90s though we told ourselves to restrict under 60! We reach outskirts of Bangalore(Hulsoor) by 8:35PM and cant believe we did 100kms in that time at night!

So... we reached, all in one piece, against the expectations of many.. Some ppl call u crazy... so be it! We are... in a sense... we all are crazy. Just that some people just cant break the shackles n come out.. We lived thru our uneventful ride... it does ache... but we never felt the pain to be so much.. Its worth what we aceived... it's a part of the game aint it? I don't care comments from ppl who opt to go by car over a long trip (!) of 60kms coz a bike gives u a bad back!

Ya, a 350cc Thumper modded to look like a Harley Davidson. Lookd cool.

What more can I say... I even to this day have nightmares of Ambitions overtaking me!!

Nithin Nath

Ride Stats:
Start time : 5.40am Bangalore MG Rd
Reached Spencer plaza Chennai : 12:20pm , chennai outskirts by 11.15am
Left Chennai : 2:15pm, Chennai outskirts by 3.10pm
Reached bangalore(Hulsoor) at 8:35pm
Total distance covered by Nithin's CBZ = 724kms (to n fro)
Total distance covered by Praveen's CBZ = 702kms (in the day)
Total distance covered by Praveen's CBZ = 704kms (in the day)

Time to travel towards chennai(till 11.15am) = 330kms in 5 hrs 30mins including four breaks( 15mins tea,40mins breakfast,20mins for 2 fuelling stops comb) adding up to 1.15hr in all.
Avg speed with breaks = 62.26kmph

So travel time is 4hrs 15 mins
Avg speed of group = 79.51kmph
Max speeds(on speedo)
Badri(Amb)- 105kmph,Nithin(CBZ)-110kmph,Praveen(CBZ*)-112kmph(all on speedo)

around 25 KMs with in chennai city.

Time to travel back to B'lore(from 3.10pm) = 332kms in 5 hrs 25 mins including a 30min break for snacks at 4pm, 15 min photo session at 5.45, 45min break at 6:15pm when Badri's bike seized and , adding up to 1 hr 30 mins
Avg speed with breaks = 61.14kmph

So travel time is 3hrs 55mins
Avg speed of group = 86.68kmph

Max speeds(on speedo)
Badri(Amb)- 115+kmph(!),Nithin(CBZ)~120kmph,Praveen(CBZ*)-116+kmph
(all on speedo)

(Total trip distance from blr Mg road - chennai outskirts - Ulsoor Blr)
687 KMs in 14.50 hrs = avg trip speed 46.32kmph

End of trip fuel economies= Ambition~39kmpl,CBZ-37kmpl,CBZ*-29kmpl.

In city usual average for these bikes were Ambition~44kmpl,CBZ- 35kmpl,CBZ*-34kmpl.


Anonymous Manas K (powerslave) said...

Ambition rowks! And the road sounds awesome.. think I should drop by sometime.

October 22, 2005 1:54 PM  

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