Buenos Aires, Part One: The Bike

March 11, 2016

Before I could allow myself to do any serious sight-seeing in this city, I needed to get to work: I had a list of items to be done on the bike before taking it to the airport for it’s first flight.

First things first: get all the mud, dirt, and grime off so I can work on it. It’s nice to have car washes that will actually wash bikes too. These guys did a great job: they used degreaser, soap, and not too much pressure. Cost: about $7.


The Butterfly Effect: lots of white butterflies on Ruta 3 heading north. Many of them were kamikazes, turning my helmet into a sticky mess.


Meet Paolo. This guy is awesome. He runs Moto Avenida, a little one-man independent parts, accessory and service shop just around the corner from my apartment on Avenida Cordoba in Buenos Aires. I stopped in and asked him if he would let me use his shop to change my oil & filter and chain & sprockets. He gladly allowed me to use his space. I bought a few small items and my oil from him. As usual, not a word of English, but incredibly nice and helpful. I had to remove the swingarm to install the endless chain, but everything I did took about an hour and a half at his shop. Just coincidence that he was wearing a Yamaha t-shirt when I showed up.

Back at the apartment, I removed the fuel tank and swapped out the fuel pump and fuel filter. As noted earlier, there’s nothing wrong with the fuel pump, but unfortunately the in-tank fuel filter is part of the fuel pump and only comes as an assembly.

One of these things is not like the other: old fuel filter/pump on the left. Filter is just a wee bit black compared to the new one. I’ll clean it again and keep it as a spare just in case.

I also replaced the mirror that was broken when the bike was dropped off the worklift in Punta Arenas. I removed my GPS, its’ mounting dock and associated wiring for shipping, and installed a new air filter.

At this point, the bike is ready to ship. I’ll cover those details Tuesday when it goes to the shipper.

2 thoughts on “Buenos Aires, Part One: The Bike

  1. Hi Pat:- I have been following your travels with much interest; not least because I also own an EFI XT250 like yours. A much under-estimated bike…
    Could the black deposits on the old fuel filter/pump assembly be from a bio-film due to the water retaining properties of the ethanol-laced fuel that I gather is prevalent in South America? I’d be interested to know whether a diluted bleach mixture i.e. ‘Spray & Wipe’ or similar removes it? The filter material is certainly very fine & could be readily blocked that way. Isn’t that a known issue with some KTM’s?
    Not a problem in my home country of Australia, where you can choose to stay away from the horrid ethanol stuff.

    • Hi Mike. Thanks for following along. Good to have another XT250 rider in the mix.
      Good observations on the fuel filter residue. I can’t say for sure what the black contaminant is, but there is no doubt that I picked it up in northern Argentina and it definitely causes fuel restriction. Along the way, I took the pump out and cleaned it each time the bike started losing power. The last time I used Simple Green spray cleaner on it, and a bandana (handkerchief) to squeeze the filter dry; then I used about ten Q-tip cotton swabs and rubbed them over the filter screen one at a time, which immediately turned the swabs a dark black. I did this until the swabs no longer turned black, and after that I had no further problems. I intend to clean the old pump/filter again and carry it along as a spare (I have a feeling Argentina is not the last of the bad gas I will encounter…still have Africa and Russia/Mongolia to go).

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