January 26, 2018 at 1:02 pm #20769
I find this quite inspiring given my own health issues, not the 168,000 miles his 2013 Super Tenere has covered which is very impressive, but what Paul Pelland has dealt with and still done it.
This article was written by Paul Pelland himself and orignally posted on: https://www.motorcyclistonline.com/paul-pellands-2013-yamaha-super-tenere
Twenty years ago, I found that riding long distances was a good way to escape a bad marriage, a boggled divorce, and what became a monstrous 10-year custody ordeal. The worse life was at home, the more hours and miles I rode. Learning to harness the healing power of the road saved my life thousands of times. I woke up, however, in a lot of strange places.
Joining the Iron Butt Association and planning long-distance rallies kept me occupied, mentally and physically. During the 2003 Iron Butt Rally, I experienced muscle weakness, loss of dexterity in my hands, confusion, and memory issues. Despite going home with a trophy, I retired from competing and eventually was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.
Five years ago, I realized that, although I could no longer compete, I could still ride long days in the saddle, so I decided to take my prognosis public by documenting a million miles as an advocate for MS. I have since covered 250,000 miles, set two world records, and raised more than $100,000 for MS charities.
I purchased my first Yamaha Super Ténéré in April 2013. Ridden through all the 48 lower states, across Canada to Alaska and the Arctic Circle, the bike has taken me to more than 200 speaking events, where I shared my story with MS patients and their families, as well as to seminars and keynote addresses at motorcycle rallies and general public events.
Over three and a half years and 168,000 miles, my Yamaha had never been properly serviced, or even washed, and it was showing signs of needing some TLC. I decided to give the bike one last hurrah for the worry-free performance it had provided me. I wanted to set a world record for riding the most hours in a single day.
To do so involved chasing time zones on November 16, 2016, the day that daylight saving time ended. Riding west from Indiana to Nevada would cross all four zones: Eastern, Central, Mountain, and Pacific. I had trouble getting the tired bike running, but 28 hours and 2,000 miles later, the Super Ténéré and I had set a new record for most hours ridden in one day.
Motorcycles are tools to me—tools that I use daily, tools to which I trust my life, and tools that whisk me away from all that is harmful and painful in life. Riding is also central to treating my disease because when I am on my Super Ténéré I don’t feel like I have MS. So get the hell out of my way because I’m on a mission, chasing a cure. —Paul Pelland
Attachments:January 27, 2018 at 7:42 am #20779OatersParticipantRank: 250cc Rider
Inspirational article Eddie- thanks for posting. In my thoughts as you face your health challenges- Kia kaha OatersMarch 4, 2018 at 4:59 pm #25767
And he’s done another 80-90,000 miles in the first year of having his new Tenere. He is a machine as well as being inspirational.April 16, 2018 at 9:54 am #26476
More about Paul Pelland, ‘Long Haul Paul’.August 22, 2018 at 5:47 pm #27405November 13, 2018 at 8:04 pm #28213
He has a new Yammie now – not a Tenere 🙁October 13, 2019 at 9:39 pm #31658
I found another couple of references to high mileage Super Teneres.
Not off road but 1,700 km of gravel to the Arctic Ocean. This will be my 2nd time to Tukoyaktuk in the North west territory’s and the 4th to the Arctic circle. Round trip was 18,000km on my 2012 Super Ténéré. The Ténéré turned over 191,000 km on the way home and the only problem was having to bleed the clutch.
Trevor Angel had a few issues at his 100,000 mile/160,000km service, but notes that they were all caused by a lack of maintenance or human error.
SUPER TENERE 100,000 mile service
I figured that Germany would be a good place to have a major service done on the Super Tenere, having just turned over 100,000 miles in Poland. I had no real problems with the bike (that I knew of) except for a cracking rear rim, which had been bugging me for some time. I approached Yamaha in Germany to see if they could help me out with the rim, and perhaps a service at the same time.
Turns out they were just as curious as I was to see how things had held up, and went through the bike top to bottom, with typical German thoroughness.
With the mileage covered I had expected the clutch to be pretty well worn, but it was in really good shape. Little wear on the basket, steel plates still have machine marks on them, and not much wear on the fiber plates. It could have gone back in, but there were some updated parts available for the 2014 model, so they went in instead.
CHASSIS, SUSPENSION AND RUNNING GEAR
Ohlins shock was in a bad way, I’d had it rebuilt in France but not all worn parts were replaced, meaning new parts working against old ones and wearing much faster than they should have. 600 euro for a full rebuild.
Clutch master cylinder was quite worn, could have been rebuilt but the guys opted to replace it.
Full lube of suspension components, all bearings good.
WHEELS AND BRAKES
The rear rim cracking has been a bit of a headache – the first one cracked at 83,000 miles/134,000km, not that bad really considering the weight carried and the kind of roads travelled. I had it replaced in France, but the person who did the job didn’t follow Yamaha’s torque recommendations and the spokes were too tight. This led to premature cracking. It was much easier for Yamaha to replace the wheel than lace up a rim, so that’s what they did, including the rear disc – the original was shot.
The front rim had a few dings that had accumulated over time, to the point where the tire wouldn’t hold air if running tubeless (so I ran a tube in it). Taking the dings out might be an option (but maybe not legal in Germany?), but again better to replace wheel.
Valve clearances were spot on except for one tight exhaust. Last done in Paris 40,000 km ago. Throttle bodies were pretty filthy, in part my fault for overfilling the engine oil on a few occasions. Excess oil gets blown into the airbox and then into the engine. Bodies removed and cleaned, and the usual adjustments performed.
FUEL PUMP AND FILTER
I’d been concerned that one day the pump might fail or at least the filter would be blocked. I was prepared for the latter, carry a filter in the spares kit (this is from a Suzuki, or something). Turns out the filter was chock-a-block with muck, so it’s surprising the bike was running as well as it was. Yamaha doesn’t list the filter as a separate part, so the entire pump was replaced.
A couple of times the engine has has a slight miss after riding through a huge rain storm. Later I’d found water in the right side spark plug holes, and some corrosion on the plug caps (which are also the coils). All 4 replaced as a precaution.
Through my own carelessness I’d melted wiring going to the accessory socket (it required a 3 amp, at one point I blew it and couldn’t get a 3 amp replacement. I put a 10 amp in instead “just until I can get a 3amp”. So now we know that the plastic on those wires will melt… the socket was still working though, so I didn’t realise the problem was as bad as it was! Wiring replaced.
Headlight bulb replaced – the 4th one for the trip I think.
Headlight fuse is a bit mysterious – the plastic was melted but not the fuse wire itself. Don’t know when or why that happened, something to keep an eye on.
I hadn’t noticed a problem with the ABS, the dash light was behaving normally but I hadn’t activated it for some time. When the techs went over the bike they found a problem with the ABS unit – corrosion. This was the big ticket item, and it was all my own fault! They asked me “have you ever changed the brake fluid?” Apparently the fluid was more water than brake fluid! I HAD changed it, at 40,000 km, but that was a long time ago now – 3 years and 125,000km. And we just did a “manual” change, using the old fashioned method. This is probably proof that the special vacuum tool should be used to pull out the old fluid. It’s possible that manual pumping doesn’t get it all, hence SOME of the fluid in the system was still the original.
A new ABS unit had to come from Japan, since there were no US versions in Germany. Got here in 4 days. Thanks YAMAHA!
The moral of the story is, change your brake fluid according to recommendations, and pay to have it done properly. It could save you $1000 or more down the line.
Slightly leaky main seal replaced, the 3rd one since new. And that’s it… final drive is perfect otherwise. Apart from a couple of minor leaks, there has been not a single issue with the final drive unit. Not many “other” bikes can say that 🙂
Huge thanks to the guys at Yamaha – great people, great company that builds great bikes. I couldn’t be happier with mine.
Next stop, Greek Islands. Feel free to chuck in a few dollars if you want to help me help the refugees.January 14, 2021 at 7:06 pm #35722
There’s anther chap on the Tenere Forum with something like 230,000 miles on his. Pretty sure there’s plenty more out there with more – the odd Iron butt guy rides them.
I have a mate with I think around 130km on his. Mine’s just hit 70 with nothing at all done to it. I also have a Kwaka with 163km – zero issues and stuff all maintenance…
Mr Pelland is now on a T7…
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