Kevin English is preparing to ride almost 1500km later this month to raise awareness of depression and suicide prevention.
The Figtree motorcyclist is part of the fund-raising Black Dog Ride, an annual event that raises money for Lifeline and Mental Health First Aid Australia.
He will join NSW riders in Castle Hill on August 17 and meet up with motorcyclists from other states at Port Augusta before heading en masse to Alice Springs.
It's important for Mr English, who experienced depression and suicidal thoughts after losing a finger in a workplace accident.
"I was a woodwork teacher and a piece of timber came out and smashed into my hand while I was in a classroom full of kids," Mr English said.
"Safety was my No 1 priority in the classroom. I'd tell the kids all the time, 'you come in here with your 10 fingers, 10 toes and your eyes - my No 1 priority is for every one of you to walk out of here exactly the same way you came in'.
"Then I had the accident myself in the classroom, and my whole confidence in my ability to teach just went out the door because I couldn't do what I was telling everyone else to do.
"That's where the mental health issues started to come from - I just lost the drive to be able to teach kids."
The subsequent depression and stress accelerated the Huntington's Disease that runs in his family. His mother had the disease and tests showed he had it.
He thought he'd have at least another 10 years before the symptoms started showing.
Mr English described the degenerative condition as "like having Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and Motor Neurone Disease all in one".
"You end up in a retirement home really early and from the age of onset of symptoms, there's a 10 to 15-year life expectancy, maximum," he said.
Which is why he is spending time going on a series of adventures - the latest of which is the Black Dog Ride.
"I've got to get out there and do all those bucket list retirement things now and get them done because I'm not going to be able to do it later," he said.
"When I found out about [the Black Dog Ride] it was like, 'I've been through all that and I know how difficult it is so I've got to get on this and help these guys'."
But Mr English said the ride also helped those participating. There were a number of stops along the way and people stopped and talked - like a support group on wheels.
"People who have been affected by mental health issues are generally on the ride," he said.
"Those little stops are for people to get together and talk about it and help raise awareness and support with each other too.
"While we're raising money for the cause, it's also therapy for us."
The long distance won't bother Mr English - he recently covered 1800km in a ride a week ago. And his three-wheeler will make the trip much more comfortable.
"I'm pretty lucky that my new bike, the Can Am Spyder, has got three wheels so it's a lot easier to ride," he said.
"You don't have to hold it up all the time - and it's got a big, soft, comfy seat for my big fat arse."
To sponsor Mr English, visit www.everydayhero.com.au/event/redcentre2013 and search for Kevin English under the "Sponsor a friend" link.