Southeast Asia & Laos Crash

February 21, 2020

I’m currently in Mae Hong Son, Thailand recovering from a broken leg, and Ash is camped out with a hill tribe somewhere in central Vietnam.

We arrived in SE Asia three weeks ago to do a loop through Northern Vietnam and Laos, starting in Hanoi and ending in Saigon. Things went sideways in Laos just 10 days into the trip, when I slid on the pavement and spiral-fractured my fibula.

The medical options in Laos were limited, so I flew to Chiang Mai, Thailand to visit an orthopedic specialist at a private hospital. There was no need for both of us to go, so Ash continued the journey solo on her bike. This is Ash’s first solo trip outside the US, and although of course we both wish the accident hadn’t happened, what a great opportunity! She’s been having an absolute blast.

We’re meeting in HCMC at the end of the month to visit with factories and catch a flight home. In the meantime I found a great hospital in Chiang Mai, met some awesome new friends, and now I’m road tripping in my buddy JM’s loaner 4×4 in Northern Thailand. Yesterday I even ducked across the border into Myanmar for 30 minutes just because, why not? I’m alone and on crutches, so I can’t do much except drive around.

The fully story of the trip is posted on our (still going) ADVrider Ride Report.

Here’s a quick summary:

We rented two XR150s from Tigit Motorbikes, which has offices in both Hanoi and Saigon. The bikes were $500 for the month for a one-way trip, and they were in excellent condition. Tigit has been awesome to work with, I can’t say enough good things about them. I can see why they have so many 5 star ratings online.

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We first headed north in Vietnam, but it’s winter and it was pouring rain in the mountains, so we headed west toward Laos instead, where it’s sunny and dry this time of year. Beautiful scenery, nice little villages, friendly folks, bumpy roads, and delicious noodles.

 

 

 

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This is where I slid. You can see the gouges in the pavement back to the apex of the turn. The road was wet from rain the night before, and there was a big and obvious slippery patch where the rear wheel lost traction. I was going maybe 20 mph.

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First we went to the local hospital in Laos, but the non-english-speaking doctor there was not much help.  He didn’t even notice the fracture. He seemed more confused by the old injury, and by the metal hardware that was already installed in the leg.

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Gear sidenote: the Reckless 80 v3 held up well in the slide.

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The Danner leather boots saved my foot. If I’d been wearing full moto boots, would the break still have happened? Not sure. It was caused by twisting. My foot was trapped under the bike, and my body flipped over while sliding. It twisted the leg, causing the spiral fracture. A more protective boot might have helped, but twisting injuries are hard to prevent. Even in a larger boot, my foot would have been trapped and my body would have twisted. Still, I can’t help but wonder.

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The fabric on the Rak jacket prototype held up great.

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This full-face Klim helmet prevented some facial scars.

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Ash and I parted ways in Oudomxay, Laos. She continued toward Saigon on the bike, while I flew to Thailand for a hospital.

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Mosko Moto Pannier Reckless Adventure Bike Motorcycle Luggage Apparel 2-21-20 (26)

 

 

The private Bangkok Hospital in Chiang Mai is unreal. It’s like checking into a luxury hotel. Service is lightning fast, professional, and all in English. The total cost for everything including new crutches was $400 USD.

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Mosko Moto Pannier Reckless Adventure Bike Motorcycle Luggage Apparel 2-21-20 (34)

Huge thanks to my buddy JM who invited me to stay with him in Chiang Mai, took me to the hospital, and even loaned me a car! Dude, I owe you one!!

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There’s a large & lively ADV community in Chiang Mai. It was really cool to meet everyone!

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Mark Ritchie (aka @markinthailand on advrider) invited me to give a presentation at his cafe/school/gym in Chiang Mai, which is built almost entirely from converted shipping containers. His school, the International Sustainable Development Studies Institute (ISDSI), caters to international students spending a semester studying abroad. About 30 ADVers came for the presentation. It was great to meet everyone. Thanks for coming! And thanks for the opportunity Mark!!

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Met this cool guy Maurice, who is starting a new business called ‘Rider Buds‘ making headphones for motorcyclists. He sold out his Indiegogo campaign, and just received his first delivery. The product looks great man. Congrats! I am definitely buying a set.

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It was also neat to see riders notice the carbon fiber laptop cases my buddy Juan makes (his site: Valeo Cases). Whenever I turned around, it seemed like someone was inspecting it.

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The next morning, I headed up into the hills in this sweet Suzuki Vitara 4×4 that JM loaned me for the week. I’m just exploring a bit, catching up on work and the blog, and reading a lot. Although it’s hard to get around on crutches, things could definitely be worse 🙂

 

 

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In a few days I’ll return to Chiang Mai, the leg will get wrapped in a full cast (right now I have a half-cast until the swelling goes down), and I’ll catch a flight to HCMC to meet up with Ash and visit factories.

That’s it for now. Time to pack up and get on the road before they kick me out of this hotel!

 

 

 

The Mosko Mule Rides Again

January 20, 2020

Happy New year!

Most of us here at Mosko took a break over the holidays, either at home or somewhere out of town. Andrew and his family went to San Juanico Baja, Scott and his family went to Todos Santos to surf, Sarah went skiing in Montana, Ames went to Florida for a family visit (and took his first-ever kiteboard lesson), Blake went to Joshua Tree to ride motorcycles in the snow, Jenn nursed her still-broken-but-almost-better leg on Orca’s Island in Puget Sound, and Ash and I went surfing in Costa Rica. Lee, Paulina, and Julia enjoyed the holidays at home in the Gorge.

Spencer Hill: The Gear Dude

Spencer Hill is joining the Mosko team part time in 2020. You may already know Spencer as The Gear Dude, or maybe you’ve read his stories or seen his pics online. Spencer wrote one of the first-ever articles on Mosko, an ‘industry profile’ for Adventure Motorcycle Magazine back in 2016 (check it out here).

Here’s a pic from that 2016 article. That’s Spencer in the middle, with the black puffy jacket.

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Here’s Spencer on the new Yamaha Tenere 700 in a writeup for Upshift Online Magazine (issue 39) wearing his Basilisk riding kit.

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Spencer: we’re stoked to have you on the team, welcome aboard!

Speed Pin Latch Idea

We’ve been experimenting with different latching systems for the Backcountry Pannier wedge mount. The latch we currently use is an off-the-shelf design. You might have seen the same latch on metal panniers or various types of storage/shipping boxes. It works pretty well, but there are some things we’re not crazy about. For example, after a big crash the overlapping lips of the latch and keeper will sometimes bend, resulting in a lose connection between the wedge and frame. Also, because the latch is behind the bag and anodized black, it’s easy to accidentally leave it open.

Andrew came up with an idea for a spring-loaded pin that runs through the bag frame and into the wedge. Using a hand drill and some off-the-shelf hardware from Ace, he created a prototype. We sent it to Dusty at West38 in Colorado for real world testing. That went well, so we ordered real prototypes from our molding factory. Last week those prototypes finally arrived.

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We tried to break one, hammering the bag hard enough to break chips off the frame. The latch held. When it deformed, you could bend it back. It’s such a simple design that field repairs would be easy if needed. On a longer trip you could even remake the entire pin from scratch if you had to.

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Here’s a video of us – just a few minutes after cutting open the box of prototypes – screwing around with the new latch, and trying to figure out what would be the first part to break.

After that, Andrew, Lee, and Blake took the Mosko Mule for a test run. The Mule is a CB175 frame with pannier racks, no rear suspension, and a paddle tire with some paddles cut off. We load the panniers with 50 lbs of sand each, connect it to a trailer hitch, and drag it around to quickly simulate a bunch of wear. It definitely gets some attention while driving around White Salmon.

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We’re feeling good about the new latch. We like it much better than the other latch we experimented with last year (see pics of a 3D printed prototype below). That one was bulkier, creating potential clearance issues, plus it had more moving parts, meaning more things to jam or break. Also the molds were $40k. The speed pin seems like a better, simpler solution to the same problem, and without the big upfront cost.

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First Backpack Prototype

We also got a first backpack prototype, which is based on all the feedback from advrider around this time last year (thanks again for that).

First prototypes of sewn goods are always a little weird. Andrew jokingly calls it the ‘Box of Disappointments,’ because anticipation and expectations are always running high, but what comes out of the box is usually not what you expected. The fabrics, colors, zippers, and trims are all substitute materials, the sizing is never quite right, and you suddenly realize how many little things you forgot to put in the specs.

In that context, we were pretty happy with this first prototype. It fits and works, so that’s a good start. The main compartment is split into two smaller ones, with a lumbar-supported hydration reservoir in the bottom, and the beavertail tucks away when you don’t need it. It has a front chest harness – which will eventually have pockets –  and a lot of ergonomics built into the back panel. No waist belt required.

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The Blazer Insulated Shirt-Jak

This insulated combo shirt/jacket is in production for 2020. It packs small, it’s warm but not TOO warm, and it works both on and off the bike. It’s thin enough to wear under armor (not poofy and no hood), but also warm enough for 3 season use in camp. This is not one of the heated garments we’ve been working on (those are still coming, but not this year).

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The logos on this new shirt-jak will be subtle: a lizard on the back of the shoulder and two small sewn-on tags on the front.

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I’ve been wearing it nearly every day since last week, including two days on the ski hill. I’m digging it a lot.

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New York Motorcycle Show

Back in December, Ash and Blake flew to New York to meetup with JC – who drove the Mosko trailer from Colorado – and setup for the New York motorcycle show at Javits Center in Manhattan.

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I was in Philadelphia around the same time visiting my family. My Dad Charlie, my sister Nadya, her husband Frank, our friend Francie, and I all took a train to New York for the show.

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The booth was very busy when we arrived.

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Mike Hernandez from BMW stopped by. Mike originated the Atacama program with BMW, although he now works on the car side of BMW. Great to see you Mike!

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Our friends Paul and Aida – recently home from a RTW trip (check out this link) – came to help at the show. Thanks guys! Paul and Aida are the only other people I’m aware of (besides me) who have Mosko tattoos. There’s a great pic of Paul, taken by Aida, on the front page of the Mosko website right now.

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Dad doesn’t ride much anymore, but here’s one of my favorite pics of us together. This was in Oregon about 15 years ago.

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The New York show is extraordinarily expensive to attend. Not only because of the booth space, but also the cost of getting the trailer there and back, the cost of storing it in New Jersey during the show, and the cost of lodging, food, flights, and ground transport for everyone who attends. Based solely on sales, if the same show happened in Utah or Colorado it would be a slam dunk, but New York City is a special challenge. This might be a show that we end up doing every other year instead of annually.

2020 Apparel Products

We received updated apparel samples. I was most excited to see the new Rak overpant. The Rak is a heavy duty overpant with full side zips designed as a rain layer for long-distance touring in non-waterproof gear. In our line, it fits between the Basilisk (most durable, least packable) and the Deluge (most packable, least durable). I’ll be taking this overpant to SE Asia for testing in a few weeks.

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We’ll replace the sealed side zipper in the pic below with a YKK Vislon Aquaguard in the production version.

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We added an attachment loop on the back of the Basilisk, to secure it to the bike with a Voile strap when you’re not wearing it.

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Same thing on the Rak jacket.

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We’re experimenting with adding some inside panels to protect the inner tricot from abrasion caused by body armor.

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On this prototype of the Basilisk, the collar is doing something weird on top of the adam’s apple. It’s because of the internal storm flap. We can fix that.

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The Basilisk pants look good.

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No inseam extender zips on the new version, we’re introducing tall and regular lengths instead.

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Bridgestone Tires

We got a big order of tires from Bridgestone for all of our show, company, and personal bikes. Bridgestone has a new ADV tire – the Battlax Adventurecross AX41 . Stop by the Mosko booth this spring/summer to check it out. We’ll have the AX41 on our BMW R1200GS Adventure, Honda Africa Twin, KTM 790 Adventure, and Honda 450L.

How many tires does it take to fill our small shop? Enough to keep our friends at Paco’s Tire in White Salmon busy for a while.

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JC stopped by Woody’s Wheel Works in Denver with the truck and trailer, where he and Kyle changed out the tires on our show bikes. Thanks again Woody’s!!

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The Automan

In December Ash and I started a new project for the UNRally.

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Ethiopia to Southeast Asia

Last February, Ash and I bought two new Chinese-made dualsport bikes in Ethiopia, rode them for a month, and left them in Awassa with the intent to return this winter and continue the trip.

We booked flights to Ethiopia for Feb 1. As the trip got closer, the two guys who were supposed to be storing our bikes completely stopped responding to messages. At this point we don’t know if the bikes are still there, or if they’ve been stolen or sold-off or what. Maybe we never will. However with only two weeks left before the trip and no communication from them, we pulled the plug. Our friend Chad will be in Awassa in the next few weeks, so hopefully he can find out what happened. He knows the two guys and is related to one of them.

With that unexpected change of events and not much time left for a backup plan, we redirected our flights to Vietnam. We have two XR150s waiting for us in Hanoi ($500/bike for a month, reserved through Tigit Motorbikes), and we’re stoked to spend some time exploring the mountains in Northern Vietnam and Laos. Because of all the confusion over the status of our bikes in Ethiopia, it was a big relief to make a final decision to kill that plan and move on. SE Asia is one of my favorite places to ride, and Ash has never been there. I have a feeling it’s going to be epic.

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Our Vietnam visas arrived with this neat little tourist brochure, including a pic illustrating the correct way to dress for two-wheeled travel in Asia: short sleeves and a dress 🙂

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Other News

Foghorn Visit

Ash, Blake, and I went to Portland a few weeks ago to meet with our digital marketing firm Foghorn Labs. One of the cool things about digital marketing is that we can trace engagement, conversions, and sales vs spend. It’s not a perfect system – Google and Facebook take credit for a lot of orders that probably would have come anyway – but it’s more than we get from other types of marketing. We weren’t doing any digital marketing for most of 2019, we only turned it on at the end of the year. So far so good.

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Cruz Tools

We want to add a fully stocked tool kit from Cruz Tools kit as an option for our Fatty and Pinner tool rolls. Ames and Lee are deciding what to include.

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Tie-Down Straps

We’re developing our own Mosko cam buckle tie-down, and maybe a ratchet strap too. An approval sample arrived last week.

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Side Release Buckles

One of the most frequent repair requests we get, whether for warranty or crash repair, is a broken side release buckle. Our current buckle is the Duraflex Ghost Eye, with the female side sewn-on. We want to change that to a removable buckle for easier field repairs. The only problem is that Duraflex doesn’t make a 1″ version, so we’ll start with the 3/4″ and 1.5″ versions now, then introduce a 1″ later when it’s available.

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Basilisk in the Wild

We love seeing our friends wear the Basilisk riding kit, even when they’re not on their bikes. Here’s Tom Medema from Rally for Rangers on the ski hill in Michigan.

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Here’s Chris and Mariel from Rottweiler Performance out for drinks in California.

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Christmas Party

We held the Mosko Christmas party at 6th Street Bistro in Hood River. Chris, the owner of 6th street, is also a rider. This year we were joined by Dan Cox (our graphic designer), Karl Golts (our web developer), and Alistair Nichols (who helps with marketing). Plus Spencer Hill came all the way down to the gorge from Seattle.

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Blake brought the Christmas tree.

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Dave Wachs Paintings

Our friend Dave Wachs makes amazing landscape paintings. In December he called and said he had the perfect painting of Beatty’s Butte, a prominent visual landmark for travelers in the Eastern Oregon desert, for the Mosko shop. However it was actually two paintings not one, and they should really stay together. Long story short we now have two awesome Dave Wachs paintings in the Mosko shop. Thanks Dave!! And thanks Geoff, for framing and bringing them to the Gorge.

Dave is a local legend here in the Pacific Northwest riding community. To learn more about him, here’s a recent article from Bend Magazine. Many of his paintings are based on the landscapes he encounters while exploring the Oregon backcountry on two wheels. Check out some of his recent paintings on Instagram.

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Markus’ Bikes

Our friend Markus Wimmer in Austria did this, and now we all have decal envy. Markus this looks SO cool man. Nice work. Thanks for rocking the Mosko logo!

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Wes’ New Bike

Pic of the Month goes to Ames’ son Wes on his brand new Oset electric trials bike. Mosko’s first rider of the next generation. Go Wes!

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San Francisco to Long Beach – and Paulina, Welcome Aboard!

December 7, 2019

We have another new addition to the team to announce. Paulina joined Mosko last week from See See Motorcycles in Portland. Before that she worked at the outdoor gear company Poler, also in Portland. Paulina rides a KTM 200 XCW on the trails, and she’s interested in getting her first dualsport soon. She’ll be working with Sarah & Jenn in Customer Service.

Here’s Paulina, 20 seconds into her first day at Mosko.

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Here she is a little later that same day, training with Jenn.

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Paulina: welcome aboard!

New Scout 30 Duffle

We received a final prototype of the revised Scout 30 duffle, which will replace the Scout 25 duffle sometime next year. We added 5L of capacity, changed the beavertail design, beefed up the backpack straps, and made the straps detachable. I’m really digging the look and feel, can’t wait to use it on a trip. Lee has been riding with a prototype of this bag all summer and he loves it. 

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Voile Straps

Our new Voile straps arrived a few weeks ago. You can find them on our website here.

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This is how I’ve been using Voile straps to connect a Basilisk Jacket to the MOLLE panel on the Reckless 80 beavertail. Right below it, the Fatty Tool Roll is also connected to my BDCW luggage rack with Voile straps as well.

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On a trip last week, I used the MOLLE panel behind the Backcountry 35 v2 beavertail to connect a Deluge rain suit with a Voile strap. The jacket fits on one side, pants fit on the other. There are pass-throughs on the Deluge stuff sack specifically for this purpose. With the beavertail cinched down, you’ll barely even notice it’s there.

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Show Bike Builds

Big thanks to Daryl and the team at Cyclops Adventure Sports for traveling all the way down to little ‘ol White Salmon and installing lights on our show bikes. So cool!

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These things are BRIGHT!!

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Also: big thanks to Woody’s Wheel Works for these awesome rims on our BMW R1200GSA, KTM 790 Adventure, and Honda Africa Twin. This might be the most excited I’ve ever been about rims. Woody’s Wheels are tougher and lighter than OEM wheels, and the anodized hubs looks totally bad-ass.

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In addition to Cyclops and Woody’s, our 5 show bikes now feature parts from Black Dog Cycle Works, Adventure Spec, Outback Motortek, Doubletake Mirror, IMS Tanks, Seat Concepts, Bark Busters, and Hippo Hands. We’re also talking to Bridgestone about tires and Trail-Tech about GPS. These are going to be some very well equipped bikes. We’ll do a more detailed writeup when they’re done.

While Cyclops was working on the show bikes, JC pulled up outside with our newly wrapped show trailer, and we (and Kade) got our first look.

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San Francisco Meetup

With the show bikes done and the trailer loaded, JC left for San Francisco by road, while Sarah, Andrew, Ash, and I flew down to meet him for a Mosko Meetup at Moto Guild on Treasure Island, cosponsored by our friends at advrider.com.

Moto Guild is a DIY repair shop with dozens of lifts and tools for doing just about anything you can imagine to your bike. They offer classes on bike repair and mechanics, consignment gear sales, and bike storage. I wish we had something like this in White Salmon.

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We had about 125-150 people come through from 2-8pm. We polished off 20+ pizzas and two kegs of beer.

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Chris MacAskill (aka ‘Baldy’), the founder of advrider.com, gave a presentation on the history and founding of the site. Chris was originally a geophysicist, who got into the tech industry working for Steve Jobs at NeXT Computer. He later started an online bookseller called fatbrain.com, which was acquired by Barnes & Noble in 2000, and which eventually became barnesandnoble.com.

Chris started advrider.com as a community gathering point and online forum for moto travelers. At that time there wasn’t an easy way to share photos, so he created a second and separate site called smugmug.com,  which is now one of the leading photo sharing sites on the internet. Smugmug is still a family owned business run by Chris’ son, with over 200 employees. Meanwhile advrider.com – always a side hobby – has grown into one of the largest forums on the internet. I mean not just in the motorcycle space, but the entire internet. With more than 350,000 registered members, 30 million posts, and millions of monthly visitors, if you google nearly any topic related to adventure riding, advrider.com invariably floats to the top.

Chris is a great storyteller, a great public speaker, and also a great photographer, which is not surprising for the founder of an online photo site. He shared old pics from the early days. He also told us about an injury he recently sustained while riding off-road with hard luggage. You can see his broken fibula on the screen below.

Thank you Chris!

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Attendance was great, the presentation was awesome, and sales were enough to cover our costs. Big thanks to everyone who braved the traffic and came to Treasure Island to hang for a bit! Especially Ray and Abe for coming early and staying late to setup and tear down.

By the way, Sarah Miller, you’re crushing it with the meetups! Thank you.

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Long Beach IMS

The International Motorcycle Show in Long Beach, CA is always the busiest of our winter shows. This year we had a 20×30 island instead of the 20×10 inline booth we’ve had in the past. We also had new displays, flooring, and lights, but we didn’t really have a plan for how to lay it all out when we arrived. We got there two days early so we’d have lots of time to tinker. Scott Bryan from Mosko and Wade Olsen, our friend from So Cal, joined us at the show. Thanks for the hard work and help guys!!

Here’s our little truck and trailer lined up with the big boys.

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Here’s the Michelin man telling Kade about tires. Kade’s like, ‘cool story bro.’

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With the larger trailer, there’s no getting around the Teamsters Union at the loading dock. Our stuff is forklifted, weighed, and charged by the pound on it’s way in, plus there’s a roll-in fee for each bike. We’re also required to use Decorator’s Union labor for setup and tear down. It’s hard to figure out how much you’ll be charged, I asked the lady at the service desk and she had no idea. There’s a hectic negotiation when you arrive at the door about how much help you’re going to get, which has more to do with how busy they are/aren’t than how much you need. From reading the exhibitor pack, I think setup labor was $110/hour, tear down labor was $220/hour, and the forklift was $80 per hundred pounds. Our booth was right inside the door and we have our own carts for everything, so we didn’t actually need any help, but that is not how it works.

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These new flooring tiles not only make the booth look better, they’re also a hell of a lot more comfortable to stand on all day. Or maybe I am just getting old.

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At first we were worried about our backdrops being only 20′ whereas the booth was 30′, but this ended up working fine. It actually works better to block one of the short ends instead of the long end.

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We used the backdrops from our outdoor shows to make a little storage room in the middle of the booth, displaying three of our four mannequins.

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JC built this storage box to hold our bag samples in the trailer. It also makes a great display table for tool rolls at the front of the booth. Ash found a local printer who made the white lizard decal that afternoon.

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Here are some pics of the finished booth.

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Brett Tckas from PSSOR gave a presentation in the “Adventure Out’ section of the show directly across from our booth, in which Mosko bags were prominently featured. Thanks Bret!

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The new Harley adventure bike was on display. In a box, which was weird.

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We had a great show. We were just $100 shy of our all time record (set at the BMW Rally in TN). Thanks to everyone who stopped by!

New KTM 1290s

The day after returning from Long Beach, Ash and I picked up KTM 1290 Super Adventure R’s from our friends at Fun Country Powersports in the Dalles. We set them up that night, and left for the Oregon coast the next day.

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It’s hard to tell in this pic, but Ash is doing her happy dance.

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The first step was to install some new Outback Motortek racks and Backcountry v2 panniers. Ash used the 25L, I took the 35L. The racks were super easy to install and our Mosko wedges mounted seamlessly. These are the ‘Standard Frame’ racks, not the ‘X-Frame’ racks that are also made by Outback Motortek. OM is now our go-to recommendation when people ask what racks to buy.

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Ash and I both tested the new Rak anorak jacket, a prototype of our new heated jacket, and some heated pants from Venture Heat. Temps were low to mid 30s with mixed rain and snow, and we were quite warm throughout. It was like riding in a sauna, except for our feet, which were cold.

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Armor-over-insulation is more comfortable than under, because the fabric isn’t stretched tight over the armor, and it’s also warmer because the heat is closer to your skin. However the heated pants are noticeably bulkier than long underwear, which made everything feel pretty snug on my bottom half. The upside is that you can ride comfortably all day long in freezing temps and rain, be completely warm and dry, and not have to add a ridiculous number of layers.

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The idea for this brief 4-day trip was to go surfing. A few years ago our friend Richard Siberell turned us on to ‘surf mats’ as a practical way to surf from a motorbike. A surf mat is a small inflatable raft that you ride like a boogie board with fins, but which packs down small so you can store it on a bike. They are made from heavy duty welded-seam materials with a rough side (which faces up and sticks to your body) and a smooth side (which faces down and slides across the water). They are absolutely the kookiest things in the surf lineup, but you can paddle out in pretty much any kind of surf and have a blast. Plus they fold small and fit easily on your bike.

Here’s a couple videos of surf mats in action:

 

Here’s the company I got mine from:

Fourth Gear Fliers Fatty Surf Mat: http://surfmats.com/the-fatty.html

I can fit the surf mat, fins, 5/4 wetsuit, booties, gloves, and a hooded rashguard in a Stinger 22l drybag duffle. This I mounted over the passenger seat of the bike.

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Water and air temps were both in the 40s, which made for chilly fingers and numb hands. They sting like crazy when they come back to life.

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At a restaurant we found a simple cheapo stylus that someone had left behind on the table. Our buddy Juan suggested using it to operate a cell phone with gloves on. That’s one of the main difficulties I’ve encountered with my cell phone as a navigational tool. Screen-friendly gloves are too clunky to type with. Is a stylus the answer? I’ll try it.

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That night I ordered this ‘tactical pen’ with stylus from Smith & Wesson. It is also a weapon, apparently.

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The Super Adventure comes with a robust OEM tool kit. I integrated this into my existing tool kit and Fatty Tool Roll, which now covers all six of our bikes.

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Coming back from the trip we arrived at the house to find two new boxes of 1290 accessories from Black Dog Cycle Works: skid plates, foot pegs, and luggage racks. Stoked to get this stuff installed.

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I’ve been using the Nomad tank bag for the last few years. This trip – on a big ADV bike with lots of rain – was a perfect opportunity to ride with the Hood. I love that the Hood is waterproof without a rain cover, and it’s so easy to get in and out of. Something that could use improvement is the internal organizer wallets. Coming from the nomad – which has tons of internal storage pockets – it is a little awkward to find a spot for things in the Hood, especially charging cables. When we got back to the office on Monday, Andrew, Scott, and I brainstormed ideas for additional internal organizational in a future version of the Hood.

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Social Media Advertising

Blake has been working on new social media ads. You might see them in your news feed on Facebook and Instagram. This is totally new for us. We just started doing social media ads for the first time a few months ago, and the first round were just simple images with some copy. The new ads are mostly video or animated. Let us know what you think? They’ll be updated monthly, so it’s easy to make changes.

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Black Friday & Cyber Monday

Black Friday & Cyber Monday came and went while we were on our trip. The chart below shows sales (in $$, but with the numbers removed) by day through the month of November at our US store. The one-day spike on Dec 18th was our San Francisco meetup. The three-day spike on the 22nd, 23rd, and 24th is the Long Beach Show. The huge spike you see on the 28th and 29th is Black Friday. So that gives a sense of the scale of Black Friday versus our other winter sales efforts. It’s massive.

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Aside from Black Friday, November and December are extraordinarily quiet. BFCM is basically two months of demand packed into 4 days. Because the demand is so spiky, I worry about picking errors and lost packages, because our warehouse and the shipping companies (UPS, Fedex, USPS, & DHL) are all working tons of overtime and using temps. We’ll see what happens with customer service calls over the next few weeks.

Despite the challenges presented by Black Friday, it’s really fun to see all the orders roll in, and it always generates a lot of excitement both inside and outside Mosko. On Friday we had visitors from 92 different countries, which is almost half the countries in the world. Amazing!

A huge THANK YOU to everyone who ordered!

In Other News

We got color swatches for the new Woodsman Pant. One colorway is the tan/black on the left (a sportier look), the other is the solid greenish grey on the right (more of a ‘travel’ look).

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We also brainstormed ideas for 2021 including a possible update to the Basilisk and Deluge, heated gear, more insulating layers, and an update to the Signal Jersey and base layer. We’re also looking at the possibility of custom private label armor, ideally in partnership with Forcefield or Leatt.

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The showroom is coming along well. We don’t get many visitors this time of year, but I’m really looking forward to this project being done.

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Jenn had surgery on her broken ankle. She expects to have her leg back by the holidays, just in time for ski season.

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Our buddy Juan, who joined us with his Africa Twin on our desert trip and also on this more recent trip to the coast, has been working on a carbon fiber laptop case called the “Valeo Case.” You can check out his website here. He sent this video testing his new case by driving over it with a car. In a Mosko Imbricate Base Layer no less.

For anyone carrying a laptop on longer trips: how do you protect it? It would be great to pass your input along to Juan as he gets this new business rolling.

 

Ash and I are currently on the East Coast. She’s in New York setting up for the IMS at Javits Center in Manhattan, while I’m in Philly visiting my folks. We’re meeting up at the show in New York today.

Happy Holidays!

Blake, Jenn, & Julia: Welcome Aboard!

November 13, 2019

It has been a great fall here at Mosko. We’re settling into an annual cycle, with spring/fall packed with riding and gear testing, the summers a blur of shows, meetups, sales, and service, and winters focused on product design and infrastructure. Soon the rain & snow will come, the trails will close, the shows will move indoors, and we’ll hunker down till spring. In the meantime we’re taking full advantage of the extended riding season we’re experiencing here in the Pacific Northwest.

Growing Team

We have three new team members at Mosko HQ.

Jennifer Harrington recently joined the Mosko team in customer service. She previously spent 4 years at the Black Tux, an online formal wear rental company, in a variety of project management and service roles. She has a BS in Fashion Merchandising & Design from George Fox University. Jenn rides a Royal Enfield Himalayan. She was in an offroad training session last week, and she unfortunately slipped on some icy mud, resulting in a fractured ankle.

Jenn: welcome to the team, so sorry that happened, and we look forward to skiing with you at Mt Hood before the New Year.

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Julia Austin joined our team several months ago as a part-time contractor – a position which quickly grew to nearly full time – helping Scott and Andrew with product development, fitment, and specs. Previously Julia was at DaKine in Hood River, where she worked on design, fitment, and speccing for the snow, mountain bike, surf, and lifestyle categories. Julia has a BFA in apparel design from the Art Institute of Portland. She recently got her motorcycle license, and she’s in the market for a bike. Welcome to the team Julia!

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Blake Draguesku joined the Mosko team a few weeks ago to manage our media content, advrider.com thread, social media presence, and many other marketing-related things. Previously Blake worked as a marketing/communications contractor in the motorcycle industry, and he also did a variety of freelance writing and photography. Blake has a BMW R1200GS Adventure for touring, a Husky 701 setup with a full rally kit, and a Husky 450 for trails & track. Check out this recent article he wrote for Road & Track (that’s Blake on the Ducati).

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With all the new faces, we’ve also increased our office space. In addition to new offices for service/sales, we added a conference room and a soon-to-be retail product showroom.

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At the moment, the showroom kind of looks like an adult shop.

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Pico Tank Bag v2.0 & MOLLE Cell Phone Case

If you’ve tried to purchase a Pico recently, you may have noticed it’s sold out. After collecting feedback and using it ourselves for nearly a year, we want to make a couple changes before reordering.

First: we’re changing the zipper. The sealed YKK zipper we used in v1.0 is pretty standard on tank bags, but they’re quick to jam in dusty conditions. A little chapstick or silicone spray fixes that, but it’s still annoying. In v2.0 we’re using a waterproof apparel zipper like the one we used on the Basilisk. It’s more expensive and they’re not commonly used on bags, but it should solve the jamming issue.

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The second change is to remove the cell phone pocket and replace it with MOLLE webbing. You can mount our (also new) MOLLE-compatible cell phone case on the pico, which works better than the built-in pocket. With the existing design, it’s hard to get your phone out of the cell pocket quickly, for example if you want to take a pic. Also, the clear vinyl panel becomes a greenhouse on a sunny day, overheating the phone. In Colorado a few weeks ago, Ames created this homemade sun cover to keep his phone from overheating.

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Here’s what the current prototype of the v2 looks like with the MOLLE panel on top.

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Here’s what it looks like with our new MOLLE cell phone case. The cell case is vented not waterproof, since most phones are already waterproof, and it has a sun cover that rolls up and tucks behind the case when it’s not in use, to protect your phone from overheating.

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The cell phone case attaches to a velcro MOLLE panel, so it fits on top of any of our tank bags. I’ve been using this plus my iphone as my primary navigational tool all year, including in Ethiopia and several US trips, and it works awesome. It eliminates the pesky handlebar vibration issues that kill phone cameras, it stores your phone in a protected spot where it’s less likely to be damaged when the bike flips, and it eliminates the problem of having to pull your phone out of your pocket at every intersection.

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The Woodsman Enduro Pant

Oh how I love this pant, let me count the ways.

The Woodsman project started with Scotty’s idea to make an enduro pant from modern, stretchy, soft-shell materials. We tested in-boot and over-boot designs, waterproof and not, vented and not, using an array of different materials. We tested them on trails and on multi-day camping trips. We even wore them around the office.

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In the end we decided the Woodsman should be an in-boot pant with lots of vents, with a waterproof-windproof-breathable layer in the knees, thighs, and butt (black in the pics above), and a stretchy DWR-treated work-pant material everywhere else (brown in the pics above). They’re tough, breathable, and very comfortable. This is a pant you can wear off the bike as well, around camp (like Scott in the pics below) or on your way to the trailhead.

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Since we got the latest protos, this has been my go-to pant for trail riding. I’m not in a big hurry to take it off when the riding is over, which I love.

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The waterproof materials in the knee, thigh, and butt protect against moisture from dew, fog, water crossings, wet seats, and light rain. They’re also windproof, so they reduce the chill on the front-facing (aka wind-facing) parts of your leg.

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For the Woodsman – and for all our 2020 apparel – we’re in the process of selecting colors. We want to add more color overall (reds, blues, greens), which is atypical in motorcycle gear, and we’re digging the earth tones (also atypical). We want our color choices to align with backcountry travel more than speed and racing, and to reflect our perspective that ADV is as much a nature sport as it is also a motorsport.

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Backpacks

Thanks again for all the feedback on backpacks. It has been received and digested, and work has started. Andrew is experimenting with patterns and concepts for at least two different packs. More to come on that.

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We won’t actually use this buckle, it’s just a placeholder.

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Here’s Ash testing a magnetic quick release buckle.

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Overland Expo East

After the KTM Rally in Colorado, J.C. hauled the Mosko Roadshow trailer all the way across the country to Arrington, Virginia for Overland Expo East. This year, OXE was held at Infinity Downs racetrack, where we had plenty of space (40′) to setup the full booth with all the backdrops, bikes, and mannequins.

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We got some new accessories from our friends at Black Dog Cycle Works to mount on our 5 new show bikes. On the KTM 790, we removed the large/clunky grab handle assembly and replaced it with a much more functional BDCW rear luggage plate. This makes for a perfect fit on the 790 with our Reckless 80.

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We also replaced the stock footpegs on the 790 (left) with the larger and grippier Black Dog version (right). We also have a new Black Dog skidplate for the 790, but we didn’t have it there in Arrington for the show.

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Carl Parker from ADVMoto Magazine let Ash & I take his Royal Enfield Himalayan out for a spin. What’s not to love about a 400cc $4,500 adventure bike?

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Carl just embarked on a new project for an ADV comic book. They’re raising money to get it launched. Check out the video on their Kickstarter page here: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/advmoto/far-rider-moto-adventures-comic-new-beginnings. If you like what you see, please contribute (we did)!

At OXE, we fitted a couple scramblers with Reckless 80s and Nomad tank bags. We’re seeing more and more scramblers opting for soft luggage. The two fitment challenges we see on these bikes are 1) finding rear mounting points for the straps and 2) interference with the low exhaust. Both issues are manageable, but it’s not automatic, and it’s different on every bike.

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Overland East is a lot smaller than Overland West. They had a series of bad weather years – including last year – which have taken a toll on attendance, especially on the moto side. This year there were only 4 motorcycle vendors in addition to us – Outback Motortek, Green Chile, Wolfman, and a local Triumph dealer.

Despite the small size and reduced traffic, OXE was still a good event order-wise. Plus we got to connect with a bunch of east coast riders. We also met the new owners of Overland Expo, and they are keen to expand the event. We’d love to see that happen too, so we’ll tentatively hang in there for another year and see what shapes up.

BTW here’s what the inside of our show trailer looks like when it’s packed. There’s barely an inch of extra floor space when we close the door. We definitely don’t want to get a larger trailer, so we may need to add some vertical shelving over the bikes.

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Upshift Online & Boise Meetup 

After Overland East, J.C got back on the road with the show trailer and headed west toward Boise. Ash & I flew home, then flew to Boise a few days later with Sarah.

Our first stop in Boise was the office of our friends Brandon, Simon, & Chris at Upshift Online. Upshift is a small Idaho-based crew of moto enthusiasts, photographers, world travelers, and media professionals who decided to bypass the traditional ‘print’ side of media, and create their own online publication instead. It’s the publishing equivalent of going ‘direct to rider.’ Upshift’s contributors and photographers are top notch, plus it’s distributed electronically, so the magazine is completely free for the reader.

It’s so cool what these guys are doing. If you haven’t already subscribed, check them out at: https://www.upshiftonline.com/.

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From the Upshift offices we headed over to Western Collective, a local brewery, for our Mosko Meetup that afternoon. They have a small merchandise store attached to the brewery, which they let us take over for the night.

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Starting around 5:30-6:00 pm the room was packed solid, with people spilling over into the brewery space as well. Huge thanks to everyone who came!!

We’re so happy with how the meetups are developing. Sarah Miller has been spearheading this. I’ve lost count of how many meetups we’ve done now, but it’s a lot. We’ve learned that the key ingredients for a successful meetup are: a major population center (Boise, Portland, Denver, San Francisco), a local partner (Upshift, ADVRider.com, West38 Moto, Doubletake Mirror), a cool venue (Western Collective, Meta Magazine, Two Stroke Coffee, Spoken Moto), a hosted bar (on us), and a brief (<1 hour) visual presentation on an ADV-related topic. That’s the model for meetups going forward.

If you know of a venue we should consider, or if you know of a particularly interesting presenter, please let us know.

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The next Meetup is Monday November 18th at the Moto Guild in San Francisco. We’re partnering with ADVrider.com on this one, and Chris (aka ‘Baldy’) the founder/owner of ADVrider.com will be presenting. Very excited about that. Join us there!

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Roadshow Trailer Wrap

The big white roadshow truck/trailer is finally getting wrapped. Dan Cox Design created the art, and PDX Wraps in Portland is doing the wrap. We haven’t actually seen the finished trailer, but PDX Wraps posted these pics on Facebook.

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Getting a vehicle wrapped feels like a small business right of passage, like launching a website or printing business cards. Can’t wait to see it in person.

Colorado Trip

Sarah, Ames, Ash, Andrew, Lee, and I headed to Colorado in October to visit with our buddy Alex Moore at MotoDiscovery Tours & Rentals in Grand Junction Colorado. Alex rode with us for a couple days, and pointed us in the right direction for the rest of our trip. We crossed a bunch of the famous Colorado passes, and were lucky to have great weather and spectacular fall colors throughout.

We kicked off the trip with a delicious home cooked meal at the Moto Discovery headquarters (aka Alex’s house). After dinner John Ferguson showed us his tricked out police bike and let us write a few speeding tickets (not really).

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Alex: thanks for being such an awesome host, and for sending us off on an epic ride. It was so fun to visit with you. Great times were had by all. We can’t wait to do it again!

Oregon Desert Trip

Since Scott & Blake missed the Colorado trip, we decided a follow up trip in the Oregon desert was warranted. Our buddy Juan from Portland joined on his new (to him) Africa Twin for his first ever ADV ride. Big thanks to our friends at Outback Motortek for overnight shipping Juan the racks, skid plate, and crash bars he needed. He stayed up all night (literally) installing the new parts and packing his newly acquired camping gear into his newly mounted panniers on his new to him bike. We were in the audience, it was fun to watch.

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On the morning of our departure from Christmas Valley, it was 14 degrees outside. Those of us with Hippo Hands had happy hands. I’ve never used these before, but they really work. A few days before leaving on this trip we met the owners and they sent us a couple pairs to try. It makes a big difference on a cold day. These will be a permanent addition to my cold/wet weather riding kit.

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Juan took a hit to the face that went something like this: rock hits wheel which pushes fork which pushes windscreen into helmet chin guard which penetrates upper lip and peels the skin back in a perfect upside down ‘V’ shape.

He needed medical help and stitches, which we found at the Lapine Community Health Clinic in Christmas Valley. After that, rather than call it quits like a sane person might have, Juan continued the trip on his own, visiting the Alvord Desert and three different hot springs, before regrouping with us at Summer Lake on the final night.

Seriously impressive work Juan: from the last minute packing and parts, to ripping across the dunes on a fully-loaded ADV bike, to bouncing back from an injury and finishing the trip on your own. Join us for any trip, anytime my friend.

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Juan was testing a prototype of a new carbon fiber laptop case he recently designed. So ironically, the crash actually served that purpose pretty well. The first thing he did when we got to the hospital was pull out his laptop and inspect it for damage, confirming that the case did its job. Now he has a great story and a new scar to launch his company. Check it out here: https://valeocases.com/

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We ran into our friends and high desert legends Dave Wachs, Carol Carson (aka ‘Skimum’), and Geoff Moe in the desert near Beatty’s Butte. It’s such a pleasure spending time with this crew, especially in the desert, under the stars, around a fire.

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Fall is for Trails

We’ve also been enjoying an unusually long fall trail riding season here in the gorge.  It keeps going and going. We’ve been out on the trails on weekends and after work. Sometimes during the work day too if we can swing it.

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Gear Testing & Repairs

With all the riding this Fall, we’ve been cataloging new product ideas plus lots of small improvements and revisions. Here are a couple issues we’ve identified with existing products.

First, my Nomad tank bag, which I’ve used on nearly every overnight trip in the last two years, recently had the stitching pull out on the front connection straps. This was an easy fix with a sewing machine (thanks Julia). The bag lives on, but now we’re looking at ways to reinforce this stitching.

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For most of 2019, I’ve been using a prototype of the Reckless 80 v3.0 on my 2017 KTM 690. The 690 always presents a challenge with exhaust heat, but the v3.0 makes it worse, because the bag runs parallel to the the exhaust blocking airflow. We had similar issues on the 450L, although not quite as extreme.

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The Reckless v3.0 won’t ship for at least a few more months, so we have time to find a solution. One option is to make a larger heat shield that holds the bag further from the exhaust. Another is to change the leg angle to create more air flow. The most reliable option would be to replace the stock exhaust with an aftermarket silencer, however that costs around $600. We’ll experiment with all of these and report back.

We had a seam failure on a brand new R80 v2 mounted on Blake’s R1200GSA. We think this particular failure was due to a manufacturing issue, however we’ve also seen it happen on other wide-saddled bikes as well, so it’s definitely something we need to address. On v3.0 we’re going to replace this stitching with adjustable webbing and rivets, so it will be substantially stronger.

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We’ve had zero issues with the Basilisk jacket -which is amazing considering that everyone on the team is using one – but we encountered two small issues with the pant. One had a hook rivet fail on the waist opening, which is easily fixed and which didn’t interfere with the trip. We”re going to replace these hooks with metal snaps in a future season. Unlike hooks, snaps will release under pressure without damaging the garment.

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Second, on a different trip, one of the molded teeth on a Vislon vent zipper broke, making the zipper inoperable. The vent was then unable to stay closed. We field-repaired it by hand-sewing the zipper shut with a drugstore sewing kit. Now it’s at Rugged Thread for repairs.

If this ever happens to you (i.e. a zipper failure mid-trip) please sew it shut, enjoy the rest of the trip, and contact us when you get home. We’ll take care of it.

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We’ve been brainstorming ways to provide enhanced repair services, especially on apparel. Not just for warranty, but also for general repairs, like after a crash for example. Everyone has had the experience of buying nice gear and then crashing on it right away. It’s a very shitty feeling. Like when you buy a nice pair of sunglasses then accidentally step on them. It’s not a warranty issue, but it still sucks. It’s also a big disincentive to buying nice things.

With the sunglasses example, if the company knows that say 10% of customers are going to accidentally break/scratch their glasses in the first month or two – but of course they don’t know exactly which customers are going to do it, only that the total will be around 10% – could they somehow insure the customer against that? Would the increased sales that come from offering the insurance then cover the cost?

In the first year or two, probably only a small percentage of riders will actually burn or trash their gear, but I bet every single rider thinks about it before buying. What if we could insure against that risk with (for example) free repairs for the first two years, regardless of what caused the damage. That would be in addition to our existing crash replacement policy. So if we can’t fix it, or if you don’t like the repair options we offer (i.e. if we can’t match the exact zipper color or material or whatever), then you can still opt to get a crash replacement at 50% off.

One major benefit of a free repair policy is that we would see all the damaged items, and we would learn from that information to keep making them stronger and easier to field repair. We would have to ensure that the economics work of course, since our margins are already pretty tight, especially on apparel, but it’s something we’re considering.

What do you think? Would that be noteworthy?

In Other News

Part Two of Ash’s Ethiopia article was published in the most recent issue of Upshift. You can view parts one and two here: Ethiopia Part One Ethiopia Part Two

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Also Brandon wrote this excellent piece on knockoffs and copycats: Knock It Off

Kade was Chewbacca for Halloween. Andrew found this little outfit and modified it for a perfect fit.

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We had lunch with Drew and Bryan from Hippo Hands in Bend.

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We’re working on new liners for the BC 35/25 panniers. We’re digging the way the blue looks inside the bag.

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We’ve been working with Rory Sullivan at Radius Offroad to offer training sessions to the entire Mosko team. Ash and I did two sessions this Fall, and it was amazing how much we improved in a short period of time. Rory is local here in the Gorge. He works with everyone from beginners to professional racers. If you’re in the area and looking for training, hit him up. Highly recommended.

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The Rak jacket is looking good. We’re waiting for a new prototype that we can test before the season ends.

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Same with the pant. The current version is too tight for testing, so we haven’t been able to ride with it yet.

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Artur Baran sent us this really cool old-school Mosko logo, along with the following message:

german producer of nafta lamp used this name

I think it can be even before WW2

Seller said that it’s from 50ties

Very cool. We love it. Thanks Artur!!!

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Packing Lists

After returning from Colorado ( week-long trip), as we unpacked our bags, Ash and I wrote down everything that we took with us. Ash was riding a 2019 Honda 450L with a Reckless 40 and a Pico Tank Bag. I was riding a 2017 KTM 690 Enduro R with a Reckless 80 and Nomad Tank bag. We shared a stove, cook pot, water filter, first aid kit, tools, tubes, air pump, and tent. We each brought our own food.

Here are our packing lists:

Ashley (Mosko Reckless 40 with a Stinger 22 Tailbag and Pico Tank Bag on a Honda 450L)

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Apparel

Mosko Basilisk Jacket
Mosko Basilisk Pant
Mosko Imbricate Base Layer
Mosko Signal Jersey
Dainese Armor Harness (chest, back, shoulders, elbows)
Forcefield Limb Tubes (knees)
Klim Gloves (desert glove + waterproof glove)

Bags

Mosko Reckless 40 w/ Stinger 22L as tail bag
2 Sm Mosko MOLLE Pouches
Mosko Pico w/ cell phone case
USWE pack

In Bags

X2 1L MSR Bottles
Multi-tool
Pocket Knife
Stove + 1 Person Cooking Kit
Hydroflask Mug (fits in 2L MOLLE)
Snowpeak Spork
Dry Sak (trash)
Dry Sak (dirty laundry)
Goal Zero Crush Light
Goal Zero Venture 70
Dakine Soft Lunch Box
Marmot Phase Sleeping Bag
Rumpl Pillow
Poncho
Beanie
inReach
Sleeping Pad
X2 Socks
X3 Athletic Shorts
Mission Workshop Merino Wool Hoodie
Arcteryx Jacket (NO HOOD!!!)
Camp Socks
Camp down slipper OR New Balance (depending on temps)
X2 Sports Bra
Lululemon short sleeve base layer
Deluge? (Pant and Jacket!)
Arcteryx Delaney Legging
First Aid Kit (in 2L MOLLE)
Custom Molded Earplugs
Chapstick
Listerine Strips
Grass Fed Jerky
Marcona Almonds
PB Packets
Oatmeal
Hard Cheese
Salami
White Rice/Farro Packets
Gnocchi 3 min. cook time
Hot Sauce
Pistachios (cajun!)
Variety of non GMO, gluten free bars (RX, Kates Real Food)
Vegetarian/grassfed Chicken/Beef packets (flat packs!)
Gluten Free Tortillas
True Lemon/Lime/Grapefruit/Orange
Fat Fuel Coffee Packets
Inhaler
Simple facewipes
toothbrush
floss
lotion/serum
headlamp
Deuce poop trowel
TP
Hydrocortisone
Neosporin
Rotos eyedrops

Pete (Mosko Reckless 80 and a Nomad Tank Bag on a KTM 690 Enduro R)

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Apparel

Mosko Basilisk Pant
Mosko Basilisk Jacket
Mosko Signal Jersey
Forcefield ADV Harness Chest/Back/Elbow
Leatt 3DF 6.0 Elbow pads
Forcefield Pro Tube Knee pads
Mosko Imbricate base layer
Revit Dominator GTX Waterproof Gloves
Klim Mojave Moto Gloves
Klim Krios Helmet
Sidi ADV Gore Boots
Compression shorts

Bags

Mosko Reckless 80
2 Sm Mosko Molle Pouches
1 Lg Mosko Molle Pouch
Mosko Nomad Tank Bag
Mosko Fatty Tool Roll

In Bags

Side pannier 1 –
Marmot Tungsten UL 3p Tent in compression sack
Thermarest Neoair sleeping pad
Marmot Phase 20d sleeping bag in compression sack
Thermarest pillowcase
Dakine food bag
Insulated poncho/blanket in compression sack, MSR ‘Honcho Poncho’ (cold weather trips only)

Side pannier 2 –
Camp stove (Ash’s bike)
Cook pot (Ash’s bike)
Stove fuel (Ash’s bike)
Eating utensil
A-Lite Camp chair
Lighter
Food

Stinger 22 Tailbag –
1 Pants
2 Boxers
1 Tee
1 Thin heated/insulated jacket
1 Beanie
2 Socks
Kindle
Dop kit (incl cortisone, Advil, antacids, chapstick, zyzal, mini deet, sun lotion)
Earplugs
Patagonia long underwear
New Balance Minimus packable shoes

2 sm molle pouches –
20 oz Thermos (coffee)
20 oz Water bottle (gatorade)

Rear Harness –
2L MSR Dromedary (water)

Lg MOLLE –
Toilet paper
Mosko Deuce Poop trowel
MSR AutoFlow water filter

Nomad Tank Bag –
1.5l hydration reservoir
Goal zero venture 70 battery pack
MOLLE cell phone case
Gerber center drive & bits
Garmin inreach 66i
Pen
Spare batteries for headlamp aaa
Petzl headlamp
iPhone cable
Kindle/inreach charge cable
1 usb wall plug
Spare key
iPhone dongle (x2)
Mosko stickers
Business cards
Battery tender to USB adapter
Spare cig lighter
Sunglasses
Custom molded in-ear headphones
Rain cover

Fatty Tool Roll –
Tow rope
Zip ties
Air pump (hand)
Air gauge
Spare front tube light duty
Spare rear tube light duty
Spare Fuses
Tube patches, scrubber, glue
Electrical tape
Metric open ended wrenches 8-13
Ktm t-handle and sockets and torx
Metric hex keys
Ktm tire nut wrench
Two trail tire irons
Open ended adjustable wrench
screwdriver reversible
Loctite
Bailing wire
Mini vice grips
Valve stem removal and tapping tool
JB quick (in toothpaste holder)
Mini chain lube
Extra clutch plates
Spare fuel pump
Spare valve rockers

Navigation –
iPhone (primary nav)
Paper maps (backup)
Inreach with maps (backup backup)

Bike –
Drivers license
Registration
Insurance

Food List –
Instant oatmeal flavored packs
Peanut butter/honey packs
Salami
Individual Cheese sticks
Flour tortillas
Peanut & Mm mix
Uncle bens 90 second rice bags
Buffalo flavor chicken creations packs
Dinty more beef stew
Corned beef hash
Dark chocolate bar
Starbucks via coffee packs
True lemon/lime/orange packs

Other –
2x voile straps for tool roll
2x voile straps for jacket
Spare drysak for garbage

Ok that’s it for now. Except that I’m seriously considering getting a KTM 1290 Super Adventure as my personal ‘Big ADV’ bike. In 2020 we want to do more big bike trips. Thoughts on that?

Backcountry Pannier v2.0: It’s Here!

September 17, 2019

Last night, on our way home from the KTM Rally in Breckenridge, CO, Ash and I parked our camper at this epic spot in Eastern Utah, just across the Colorado border. We’re staying here today, taking advantage of the excellent cell service to catch up on emails and the blog. We’ve been traveling non-stop for the last 6 weeks – including two weeks off-grid in Black Rock City – so there’s a lot to catch up on.

That trail cutting up the ridge just outside our window is the 150 mile Kokopelli motorcycle trail, which runs from Fruita, CO to Moab. This would be a pretty great spot to hang for a bit, wish we had more time.

mosko-moto-motorcycle-soft-bags-dualsport-offroad-adventure-soft-luggage-pannier-duffle-ktm-bmw-klr-rackless-reckless-tank-bag-adventure-jacket-pants-jersey-BMW Atacama- 9-17-19 (16)

Backcountry v2.0

mosko-moto-pannier-35-liter-backcountry-35l-pannier-kit-v2-0-12051036438589_2000x

The Backcountry Pannier v2.0 is finally here!

We were briefly stocked-out on the prior version before v2.