Small displacement adventure bike

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by skyzo, Aug 30, 2011.

  1. skyzo

    skyzo n00b

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    Well for the last 10 years I have been an bicycle tourer, I rode across the USA in '06. In other words, going slow is no problem for me. I started getting into motorcycles a few years back when I acquired a cool old '76 Elsinore 250 that ruled. Now I've got the touring itch again, and this time I've decided I want to do it on a motorcycle.

    The ride I'm planning (for next summer) is about a 5,000 cross country route from oregon to maine, with lots of exploring along the way. I'm now at the stages of selecting a bike, which is where I have my dilemma.

    The main thing is, I WANT to go slow. This is the main reason I love bicycle touring, the ability to be a part of the environment you are riding through, not whizzing by at 70mph. One bike that started to interest me after reading nate the postman's awesome thread, was a Honda ct90. The 90 seems perfect for what I need, about 40mph max, and off the charts gas mileage. I just want to make sure I make the right choice before pulling the trigger on one. I would have to say, that the biggest bike I would consider is probably a 200cc.

    I will be camping along the way, but I have been ultralight backpacking for quite a long time, so all my camping gear weighs about 10lbs. Throw in some bike tools/panniers/extra food I would think the most I'd ever have loaded on the bike is about 50lbs. I clock in at only 160lbs, so the bike doesnt have to pull much.

    Sorry for the long post, just wanting to make sure I make the right decision.
    Thanks
    #1
  2. JeffS77

    JeffS77 cheap bastard

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    Yamaha TW200, Suzuki DR200, a plated Honda XR200...maybe a Honda TLR200 Reflex..low seat very basic machine and weights about 190lbs and with facotry gearing will cruise 55+mph all day long

    all good bikes..i know your not lookng to go fast but these will have a lot more umph that the 90 just wont have when needed..steep climbs, hills,passes etc etc.
    #2
  3. Moto13

    Moto13 Riding to Relax

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    #3
  4. Butters

    Butters Kwyjibo

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    Ruckus?
    #4
  5. Birdmove

    Birdmove Long timer

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    Suzuki GZ250, Honda Rebel or 250 Nighthawk. The TW200 and DR200 are both excellant small adventure bikes as mentioned above. Honda CRF230L is another. It's a six speed. Yamaha XT250. The DR200 has the biggest fuel tank of these.

    Hey, you want a 150cc look at the California Scooter Co. base model.

    jn
    #5
  6. tHEtREV

    tHEtREV Captain Awesome... tEAM iDIOT.

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    Try here for info on the CT110, a lot of the info will be applicable to the 90.

    And the guys who ride them here get the whole slow touring thing, so they won't be trying to convince you to get a "normal" size bike.:D
    #6
  7. MaineScoot

    MaineScoot Been here awhile

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    I see you've read about Nathan the Postman's trip from Sidney to London on a Honda CT110 "Postie Bike"

    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=460631

    [​IMG]


    But how about DaBinChe's trip from San Jose to the Arctic Circle on a 101cc SYM Symba?

    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=592359


    [​IMG]


    Or the couple riding around the world on a pair of Symbas?

    http://underboningtheworld.blogspot.com/


    [​IMG]



    These bikes are basically Honda Supercubs. There have been over 60,000,000 of these bikes sold. More than any other vehicle in history.
    SYM made millions of Supercubs for Honda for 40 years. These motorbikes list for about $2,500 but you can find them used for less. The new 2012 models are just arriving in the US now.


    I've taken my Symba for a 400 mile round trip from Portland to Bar Harbor and back. It'll go 63 down hill, 55 on the flat and a big uphill will slow it down to 40. I've been very happy with it so far. I got it at the beginning of the riding season and have 1400 miles on it now.


    Another bike that might be of interest is the new SYM Wolf Classic 150:

    [​IMG]

    The first US Wolfs are on a boat on their way from Taiwan and will be available in a few weeks.
    #7
  8. skyzo

    skyzo n00b

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    Wow thanks guys! Some great info here, once I look up some things about these bikes I will post more. Thanks for the links Mainescoot, I'm already reading that Symba one.
    #8
  9. Wolfgang55

    Wolfgang55 Long timer

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    yamaha wr250r/x, great FI, great brakes, 75-80 mpg, over size forks, over size tires, tough engine
    #9
  10. MaineScoot

    MaineScoot Been here awhile

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    #10
  11. GR0NK

    GR0NK Got some screws loose!

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    I don't think the venerable Yamaha XT225 Serrow has been mentioned.

    [​IMG]

    It's very reliable and has electric start. Can be setup nicely for what you want to do.

    [​IMG]



    Sean :bmwrider
    #11
  12. GR0NK

    GR0NK Got some screws loose!

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  13. arkansawyer

    arkansawyer Long timer

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    I've got a trail 90. There are some positives to the bike.

    One negative is the seat. Just a few miles and it gets uncomfortable.
    #13
  14. Rainier_runner

    Rainier_runner Heh..?

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    I thoroughly enjoy my Kawi KLR250. Very simplistic, very reliable, 60 to 70 mpg depending on conditions, and can cruise all day at 60mph. Surely meets my requirements for minimalist adventuring. :beer
    #14
  15. GR0NK

    GR0NK Got some screws loose!

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    I don't find mine uncomfy. It's pretty big and cushy. Maybe yours is just flattened and needs a re-stuff. Otherwise...

    http://www.airhawk.com.au/

    I have a few buddies who swear by these things, and they're on 950 Adventures.



    Sean :bmwrider
    #15
  16. skyzo

    skyzo n00b

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    I'm actually really liking the idea of a Ruckus and the Sym at this point. So I think I've narrowed it down to those two and the ct90. Some of those other bikes look rad too, the TW200 is something I had considered before, I like the looks of that bike as well.

    The main pros and cons I'm seeing of these are:

    Ruckus:
    Pros: relatively cheap, reliable, lightweight, easy to acquire, excellent MPG
    Cons: Maybe a little too small, I have heard people saying it struggles to go 20 up hills, that might be a problem.

    CT90:
    Pros: VERY cheap, about 10 of them on craigslist near me for <$1000. Decent MPG
    Cons: Most of these are older, 60-70's bikes. While i LOVE old bikes, for a cross country trip, not sure on durability(is natethepostman's a rare bike to make it that far? Most others I see I here of about 10,000 max miles before trouble hits)

    TW200:
    Pros: Able to keep up on highways if the need be. Best offroad capabilities of all of the choices
    Cons: Most expensive to get a decent bike. While still good, least MPG of all considered choices. Not sure on long term durability?

    Any thoughts guys?
    Thanks!
    #16
  17. MikeF

    MikeF Adventure Rider

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    #17
  18. plugeye

    plugeye unforgiven

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    the OP did it on a bicycle. i dont think he cares about ANY seat
    #18
  19. Northwoods Yeti

    Northwoods Yeti Almost house broken

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    I thought these were cool:

    http://www.moto-scoot.net/sachs_madass_125.php

    They have off-road kits high fenders and knobbies!

    <iframe width="420" height="345" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/vjQXxk875E4" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

    Pretty nimble!

    <iframe width="420" height="345" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/_ELmrp9Dxfo" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
    #19
  20. Butters

    Butters Kwyjibo

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    Here's so more inspiration regarding the Ruckus (if you want to read a 100+ page thread about a young guy from another country riding a Ruckus across the US): http://totalruckus.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=12143

    There s a huge aftermarket for the Ruckus and loads of info on modding it. I think you can squeeze a little more power out of it (although some guys get crazy and spend a fortune squeezing even a little bit more power out of it).

    I'd personally go for a 200-250 dual sport just because they are so versatile (TW, Sherpa, KLR250, XT225/250). But even one of those wouldn't give you the same adventure as a sub-150cc moped. But do realize, you can't take some of the smaller mopeds on some highways even if you were inclined to . . .

    Anybody recall what those small, fat tire little bikes that looked futuristic were called that were made by Honda(I think)?

    EDIT: This is the only pic I could find (the bike in the background - what's it called??)
    [​IMG]
    #20