I am the original 'Uneasy Rider' .. not especially blessed with much natural motorcycling talent, nor am I a particularly courageous motorcycle rider.
Nevertheless I went 'Right Way Round' New Zealand (at least twice) followed by a wonderful ride around Australia.

Then it was up to southeast Asia, around Indo-China, across southern Central Asia to the Middle East, Asia Minor .. and finally into Europe.

Right Way Round - all the way home .. from New Zealand to England, 2-up on a Honda Transalp.


PROGRESS SO FAR - Distance covered across Western Europe: 6,411 km [3,984 miles] - as at Thursday, October-22nd, 2015

Bike Modifications

  • Hepco & Becker Crash Bars
  • Engine Guards
I'm not sure how effective the above two add-ons would be in an accident. Probably not that much. Still, any protection is better than none. Should protect the tupperware though in a slow-speed /crawling tip-over.

  • Standard windshield substituted for a MRA Vario-Touring Screen with Spoiler
Easily adjustable in height and angle by hand - with no tools required. The screen has seven positions enabling you to alter the airflow directed towards you to reduce turbulence and buffeting.

  • Barkbusters Aluminium-Backbone Handguards
Australian made - yet I bought these from a UK-based supplier at a far cheaper price than I could get them from a dealer down under! Not only do they protect your hands in the event of a fall or from passing foliage and other objects, but they also greatly reduce the chance of snapping the brake and clutch levers in the event of a drop.

  • Spare Clutch Cable
A Transalp's clutch cable is one of its (few) weak spots. It can snap after 10,000 km (6,000 miles), or go-on for 100,000 km. The last one – the original stock cable – snapped after 26,000 km. Luckily I had a spare cable threaded alongside the active one at the time, so the problem was fixed within 20 minutes.

With this forewarning in mind, I now always have a spare clutch cable lying lazy next to the working cable .. just in case!

  • SW Motech "Non Shock" Vibration Damped GPS Mount
This bike specific GPS anti-vibration mount is positioned in the centre of the handlebars so that the GPS unit does not obscure the dashboard display. It provides a very secure and vibration resistant platform for my Garmin Zumo 500.

  • Baglux Bagster Tank Protector
This tank protector covers the fuel tank and protects the paintwork. It has a 4-point attachment system to harness my 25L tank bag, thus providing optimal stability for this handy piece of luggage.

  • Genuine Honda main centre stand
Lifts the wheels - tipping point - off the ground, so great for checking the drive chain's tension. Will come in mighty handy if I ever need to repair a puncture too.

A real pain in the arse to fit though; especially the main spring mechanism.

  • Genuine Honda low seat
3cm lower than the factory standard. Excellent for Ellen with her shorter legs whenever she gets her hands on the bars. Yes, she holds a full motorcycle driver's licence too. Clever girl.

  • Hyperpro Rear Emulsion Progressive-Spring Shock
Bespoke order to my own specification. The original Honda stock shock absorber couldn't adequately cope with the combined weight of me, my pillion, and all our luggage.

  • 'Ventura' style pack-rack
Custom fitted by my mate, Paul, in his Auckland-based private workshop during the Kiwi winter of 2009. Ideal as a frame for mounting my RJays Expandable Explorer Rack Bag (see below).

  • Pannier racks - and aluminium pannier boxes
Again fitted by Paul down under [NZ] in 2009. Each pannier has a capacity of 30 litres.

Before the system was built and assembled on the bike I was concerned that the top leading edge would restrict the pillion passenger's freedom of movement. BUT ..

.. "No worries mate"


  • RJays Expandable Explorer Rack Bag
- Built-in rain-cover with adjustable drawstring, 100% waterproof
- Back Pack straps - storage compartment for same
- Built-in slipover pocket for easy mounting on the Ventura rack, with dual securing straps
- Detachable zippered bumbag
- Mesh outer pockets

BUT the most impressive aspect of this bag is that it features double expandable main compartments, which increases the capacity from 47 litres to ..

 .. a whopping maximum of 82 litres!

So now we're up to a maximum  luggage carrying capacity of: 60L (2 x alu panniers), plus 82L = 142 litres.

But wait, there's more ..
  • Baglux Bagster tank bag
Another 25 lires

  • Wolfman Expedition Dry Tank Panniers 
providing another 18 litres per pair (9L each).

Each bag is just big enough to accommodate a well-stuffed sleeping bag, plus a mattress and an inflatable pillow. We can also squeeze-in some other light-weight peripheral stuff like a mosquito net, etc.   We're gonna save a small fortune on the cost of lodgings from now on, which can't be all bad .. especially bearing in mind the current crappy GB£ ~~> AU$ exchange rate!

Therefore altogether we have a maximum  luggage carrying capacity of: 60L (2 x alu panniers) - plus 82L (RJays rack bag) - plus 25L (Baglux tank bag) - plus 18L (2 x Wolfman tank panniers)

A total luggage carrying capacity of 185 litres.