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Old 26th November 2011, 21:55   #1
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Default The "Splendid" Hero Honda Splendor - 12 years, one lakh KM up!

Here are a few pics first!
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The "Splendid" Hero Honda Splendor - 12 years, one lakh KM up!-dsc00261.jpg  

The "Splendid" Hero Honda Splendor - 12 years, one lakh KM up!-dsc00262.jpg  

The "Splendid" Hero Honda Splendor - 12 years, one lakh KM up!-dsc00263.jpg  

The "Splendid" Hero Honda Splendor - 12 years, one lakh KM up!-dsc00265.jpg  

The "Splendid" Hero Honda Splendor - 12 years, one lakh KM up!-dsc00266.jpg  


Last edited by Gansan : 26th November 2011 at 21:57.
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Old 26th November 2011, 22:09   #2
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Default Re: Splendid Splendor - (almost ) 12 years, 96000 KM

I bought her on 19/02/2000 from Southern Auto, Chennai. I have been thinking of a long term ownership report for quite a while now, but kept putting it off. Why now? There is a reason, but other things first.

This is my fourth bike. I had an Ind-Suzuki AX-100, Kawasaki-Bajaj KB 100 (not RTZ) and a Shogun "the boss", in that order, before this. A Lamby and a Chetak also occupied my stable briefly along with the KB 100. But none of them touched a chord in my heart the way this Splendor did - well, the Shogun did too, but in a different way.

Last edited by Gansan : 27th November 2011 at 07:49.
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Old 26th November 2011, 22:27   #3
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Default Re: Splendid Splendor - (almost ) 12 years, 96000 KM

During late 99 - early '00, my Shogun began to give problems because of a re-boring job gone bad. I never got more than 35 KMPL from it even before the job but it was FUN to ride! The howling sound from the exhaust as I closed the throttle after a high pick-up used to give me a thrill! But something went wrong with the job though it was carried out by a most experienced chap and the engine seized up even after a 1000 KM run-in. The bike felt castrated afterward and the fun quotient went missing. And combined with the abysmal mileage, it was time to look for a new bike.

I did not want to look at another Shogun or a Samurai. The RXG / RXZ were still available but the quality had become so-so. I was not interested in the Yamaha YBX. The Suzuki Fiero and the HH CBZ were just about to hit the market. And that was about all the choice available then!
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Old 26th November 2011, 22:42   #4
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Default Re: Splendid Splendor - (almost ) 12 years, 96000 KM

From the beginning, the CD 100 and the Splendor had caught my attention for some reason. Perhaps I liked their conservative styling. Perhaps also from the experience of my friends, I knew about their phenomenal mileage and durability. And especially after the poor mileage of the Shogun, I thought it was time for an economical bike!

In my opinion, at that time, the Splendor was the best packaged bike. It had the right mix of looks (for that period), build quality, brand value, durability and FE. And also refinement, the one factor I felt missing earlier. It did not have the top-end whack of the Shogun, but had a nice bottom -end for city ride, where the Shogun always felt constrained. The price was high - I think I paid Rs 49k for it, and a few years later the price came down to ~ Rs 45k, where it still stays IIRC!

It has delivered consistently on the mileage+durability part, and how! If you observe the pictures closely, you will notice the quality of the paint job and chrome. There is very little rust even after all these years. Which is not the case with my brother's four year old Unicorn. And I used to get 73 + KMPL consistently till about 65k on the odo, after which it began to taper off. Even now I get 62 KMPL. And the engine is still untouched.

Last edited by Gansan : 27th November 2011 at 23:55.
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Old 27th November 2011, 08:41   #5
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Default Re: Splendid Splendor - (almost ) 12 years, 96000 KM

I have many fond memories associated with this bike. Just a month after I bought it, I had to re-locate to Bangalore for the next five years, due to transfer. Had I known about it earlier, I would have waited and bought the bike at Bangalore. Ah, how many hardships I faced at Bangy due to the TN number plate!

Within a couple of months after moving to Bangalore, forest brigand Veerappan abducted Kannada icon Rajkumar. The news broke after I had reached office and there was no way I could return home by bike in the evening. Mobs were out on the streets. My commute was from Ulsoor Road to Vidyaranyapura and I did not yet know of alternate routes to take if there was trouble on the way!

Three more of my colleagues had re-located from Chennai / TN because all four staff of the Bangy office had earlier left on VRS. All of us were in the same boat. None of us could speak Kannada yet. The entire strength of the office was just eight, including the regional manager, Dy.regional manager, sub-staff and security. The rest were all field officers, who will report to HQ only once a month. And both the RM and DRM (kannadigas both) were away on tour to Chickamagalur.

As soon as he saw the news on TV, our RM was worried we might get in to trouble. So he called us and instructed that all our bikes with TN plates should be moved inside the generator room and parked behind the generator! None of us were to talk to any strangers, except the security chap or the messenger. Three of my colleagues were to be dropped off at home by his deputy's jeep (which was parked in the office premises) by a visiting Marketing Officer. I later left with this MO on his bullet. This chap lived at Sanjay Nagar and took quite a detour to drop me at Vidyaranyapura. Sure enough, we saw huge unruly crowds at many junctions displaying Rajkumar's photo. We had to get down and push the bike past, as a mark of respect!

Needless to say our bikes remained inside the generator room till things cooled off in the next couple of weeks, and we commuted by bus.

Last edited by Gansan : 27th November 2011 at 22:34.
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Old 27th November 2011, 22:32   #6
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Default Re: Splendid Splendor - (almost ) 12 years, 96000 KM

As soon as this issue played out, the RTO drive against other state number plates started. Every now and then I would be stopped by a cop. I bluffed I was visiting from Hosur and got away a couple of times. A couple of colleagues even got their TN plates painted in chaste Kannada and got away for a while. But I could not bluff about Hosur to the same cops standing at the same beat and got fined Rs 200.00 a couple of times.

Then the "mother of all issues" started between TN and KA - the Cauvery one! The issue turned very sensitive when a farmer near Tumkur jumped in to the canal and died in protest. Believe me, a TN plate will act as a "cop magnet" under such circumstances. It will be galling when you have to pull over while a KL or AP plate will just zoom past you! I got tired of this after a while and checked out which was the RTO for my area. Learned it was Yeshwantpur. Went there quietly one day, caught hold of a broker and paid Rs 2400.00 as life time tax, without re-registration.

Thereafter I pasted a photocopy of the RTO receipt on the bike's fairing and would ride nonchalantly through the most cop infested areas! At traffic signals, I would wind my way through the maze and get to the very front row right in front of the cops, in contrast to my earlier practice of slinking behind some bigger vehicle! Ah, it was a liberating feeling!
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Old 27th November 2011, 23:07   #7
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Default Re: Splendid Splendor - (almost ) 12 years, 96000 KM

The bike served me faithfully for five years at Bangalore, on my daily commute of 36 odd KM to and fro. I located a very good A.S.S. in Liberty Motors, Peenya. They did a very good job and the bike ran like a dream. I would fill petrol only at the IOC bunk at Gokula, and nowhere else. The bike never returned less than 72 KMPL in all those years. I would regularly take my wife and son and visit relatives at Whitefield, through the ring road. We even made a few visits to the Bannerghatta National Park from VR pura!

The odo reading was around 3000 KM when I took it to Bangalore in June'00, and it was 53963 KM when we left Bangy in June'05. Exactly 50,000 KM in five years! And she never missed a beat, 365 days a year - minus the days we were visiting home on leave, of course!

We came back to Chennai in June'05 and in Decebmer, I had to report at our factory at Tuticorin. This time I left my family and the bike behind. It was used only during my week-end visits for the next two and a half years. Still did ~10k Km during that period. I returned to Chennai In july'08 and thereafter started using it daily. Right now the odo stands at 96000 KM. It is being serviced by another good A.S.S here, Srinivasa Motors in my area.
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Old 27th November 2011, 23:41   #8
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Default Re: Splendid Splendor - (almost ) 12 years, 96000 KM

I have maintained a meticulous log book for the bike. When I leaf through the pages, these are the only part replacements I see:

01/09/01, 14800 KM:
Horn and rear brake shoe.

05/01/2002, 17965 KM:
Front brake shoe, battery (Yuasa).

23/11/02, 26706 KM:
Rear brake shoe, rear wheel damper, clutch cam spring.

15/03/03, 30203 KM:
Front brake shoe, rear brake light switch.

25/05/03, 32301 KM :
Rear tyre and tube (OEM Dunlop) replaced with MRF Nylogrip.

25/08/03, 34854 KM:
Fork overhauled, ball race and headlight assy replaced - due to accident. Rear-ended a Matiz at Cauvery theatre signal!

10/01/04, 38992 KM:
Brake shoes for both wheels. front tyre and tube (OEM Dunlop) replaced with Ceat.

20/11/04, 48237 KM:
Timing chain, clutch plate, rear brake shoe, fork left leg oil seal, battery (Exide).

11/06/2005, KM 53963:
Front brake shoe.

16/04/06, 59200 KM:
Battery (Base Terminal).

30/07/07, 62950 KM:
Rear brake shoe, Air filter, throttle cable, speedo worm gear.

26/07/08, 67600 KM:
Winker switch, mirrors, horn.

23/08/08, 68075 KM:
Fork overhaul, ball race, front brake shoe, left footrest, battery (Amaron pro)

28/02/2009, 72995 KM:
Air filter, rear brake shoe, chain & Sprocket, clutch cable.

23/05/2009, 75170 KM:
rear tyre and tube (MRF Nylogrip) replaced with 3.00 X 18 MRF Moto-C.

26/07/09, 76510 KM:
Main stand welded.

27/02/10, 80923 KM:
Spark plug, both wheel brake shoes.

16/03/11, 89571 KM:
Air filter, brake shoes, headlamp bulb.

Last edited by Gansan : 27th November 2011 at 23:42.
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Old 27th November 2011, 23:52   #9
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Default Re: Splendid Splendor - (almost ) 12 years, 96000 KM

There is a reason for me to feel nostalgic about this bike. The time may be nearing to part ways with it. The oil consumption has been gradually increasing for the past couple of years, and nowadays I have to top-up oil every week.

When I left it for service yesterday, the SA told me the time has come to either replace the engine kit for Rs 9000.00 or replace the bike itself. They will leave the engine alone for the current service, but that's about it. The engine has started to go off at low speeds, and smoke is visible at high revs.

I need an opinion from you guys; has anyone done this engine kit change job? Will it be worthwhile? They are saying it will last 50k KM.

If I decide to change the bike, it should be another one with a closed chain guard. I hate naked chains. The CC may be anything from 100 - 250.

Last edited by Gansan : 28th November 2011 at 00:09.
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Old 28th November 2011, 00:04   #10
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Default Re: Splendid Splendor - (almost ) 12 years, 96000 KM

Thread moved from Assembly Line.

Thanks for sharing
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Old 28th November 2011, 10:43   #11
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Default Re: Splendid Splendor - (almost ) 12 years, 96000 KM

That's a very nice report of a bike for which I have some fond memories as well. I had run mine for 84K kms in 8 years and I had to part ways before going abroad for higher studies. The shocks had started to loosen up, but everything else was still in pristine condition till the sell off. I had bought mine in Feb '98 and sold it in Jan '06.

A brand new engine kit would easily run for more than 50K. A friend's bike is running on a "new" engine kit for more than 85K kms. The new kit was installed after the old one had done 1.3 lakh kms. So I am guessing that the 50K number is for warranty purposes only and should easily run for more than that.

Prajwal
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Old 28th November 2011, 13:13   #12
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Default re: The "Splendid" Hero Honda Splendor - 12 years, one lakh KM up!

Gansan,
The elaborate write up reveals your attachment with your favourite bike. Why dont you go about with the engine overhaul as suggested by the A.S.S? You have got a master-piece bike & that too very well maintained by yourself. And I bet, any new generation bike wouldn't conquer your heart this much. BTW is it possible to install a self start as in passion-pro?
Regards,
Ilango
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Old 28th November 2011, 14:01   #13
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Default re: The "Splendid" Hero Honda Splendor - 12 years, one lakh KM up!

Excellent writeup and well maintained bike. Can you tell us what is included in the engine kit? 9K sounds like a lot to me. I think replacing the piston rings could get the bike back in shape, that might be what is eating oil and the oil getting burnt is the smoke coming out. I could be totally wrong too, so please take it with a pinch of salt.

The very fact that not a single electrical component has ever gone out proves that the bike is of a very high quality. All your services involved regular wear and tear parts. This is unlike my Victor where I've had to replace the CDI and the Regulator in these 7 years of ownership.

Why don't you get advice from another mechanic? Please try to keep the bike with you, I'm sure it can do more miles...
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Old 28th November 2011, 14:45   #14
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Default re: The "Splendid" Hero Honda Splendor - 12 years, one lakh KM up!

^^ Except a couple of indicator bulbs, there was no electrical part failure at all. Even they had to be replaced with the light itself, which was broken by impact. Apart from the part replacement list posted by me, the speedo cable inner was replaced a couple of times in 2002 and 2006, and the full speedo cable in 2010. Since I had included them under "running repairs" in the log book, they got omitted.

The foreman in the A.S.S is a friend of mine and I called him after seeing your post. He says the following inner components will be changed ;

a) Crankshaft
b) Bore/Piston assembly
c) Valve kit
d)Timing chain
e) Clutch plate
f) valve guide
g) Bearings (5 no.s)

He says the cost can vary a bit on either side of Rs 9k, depending upon what can be retained or must be changed. After opening the engine customer will be shown the parts and the approval will be taken. There will be two free services (1 month, 3 months) after the job.

I forgot to ask about the post repair warranty period and will check with him when I go to take delivery of the bike this evening. I am servicing the bike without the engine job this time, but he says he will refuse to do it next time! I think it is too late to merely change the rings, but a re-bore may be possible. But after the Shogun experience, I am allergic to re-bore jobs!

Last edited by Gansan : 28th November 2011 at 14:54.
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Old 28th November 2011, 15:24   #15
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Default re: The "Splendid" Hero Honda Splendor - 12 years, one lakh KM up!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gansan View Post
^^ Except a couple of indicator bulbs, there was no electrical part failure at all. Even they had to be replaced with the light itself, which was broken by impact. Apart from the part replacement list posted by me, the speedo cable inner was replaced a couple of times in 2002 and 2006, and the full speedo cable in 2010. Since I had included them under "running repairs" in the log book, they got omitted.

The foreman in the A.S.S is a friend of mine and I called him after seeing your post. He says the following inner components will be changed ;

a) Crankshaft
b) Bore/Piston assembly
c) Valve kit
d)Timing chain
e) Clutch plate
f) valve guide
g) Bearings (5 no.s)

He says the cost can vary a bit on either side of Rs 9k, depending upon what can be retained or must be changed. After opening the engine customer will be shown the parts and the approval will be taken. There will be two free services (1 month, 3 months) after the job.

I forgot to ask about the post repair warranty period and will check with him when I go to take delivery of the bike this evening. I am servicing the bike without the engine job this time, but he says he will refuse to do it next time! I think it is too late to merely change the rings, but a re-bore may be possible. But after the Shogun experience, I am allergic to re-bore jobs!
Just a re-bore is not worth it. Get a new bore case with a new piston/rings set. Your bike will keep running without a fuss, although I also think that 9K "could" be on the high side. But it'll ensure a trouble-free run post the new engine transplant.

Prajwal
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