we started working on the bikes a couple of months before the trip- spending a lot of time on the sidewalk out front of my house. we installed higher handlebars, new seats, electronic ignitions, rewired some components, changed the oil, as well as a few other small repairs to get the bikes as roadworthy as possible. the idea was that the more time we spent fixing them before we left, the less time we’d spend doing repairs on the road. this turned out to be only somewhat true as different problems arose with a striking degree of regularity along the way.
we took both motorcycles to a shop for a tune-up to make sure we hadn’t missed anything big. we got the bikes back, decided what tools to bring with us, packed our bags, said our goodbyes, and then we were ready to go.