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Old 4th January 2012, 13:42   #1
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Default RE Classic Chrome 500 (12,500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!

What I liked :-

1. Jaw-dropping gorgeous looks
2. Oodles of shimmering chrome
3. Brute of an engine. 500cc pumping out 27.2 BHP with massive torque
to boot
4. Better than expected ride & handling
5. Excellent braking capability. Especially the front discs

What I didn't :-
1. Features like Tachometer, FE consumption display etc not available
2. Front Indicators not visible from sitting position. Beeper required to
know if it's operating or not
3. Footpegs are wide & situated way too forward. Trousers/Jean tends to
get entangled in it often
4. EFI engine requires you to maintain minimum 3L of fuel

ODO reading at time of delivery

RE Classic Chrome 500 (12,500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!-img_0231.jpg

Maroon Marauder

RE Classic Chrome 500 (12,500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!-img_0298.jpg

Pleased as a punch owners of Maroon Marauder

RE Classic Chrome 500 (12,500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!-delivery.jpg

Last edited by mobike008 : 4th January 2012 at 16:45.
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Old 4th January 2012, 13:47   #2
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Default re: Royal Enfield Classic Chrome 500 : The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home !!!!!

Introduction

From my team-bhp handle, it isnt too hard to guess that I have some kind of affinity with bikes at some point of my life. I owned a number of 2-wheelers during my college days and used to enjoy riding a bike and also did several long haul rides like Pune-Mumbai, Lonavla, Mahabaleshwar and Hyderabad etc.

But, over the years passion for cars overtook primarily for reasons of comfort and safety but, passion for bikes was still lurking at back of my mind at all times. As a matter of fact, I'am still an ardent lover of MotoGP compared to F1 and follow and enjoy the former more than latter.

My current ride is a Pulsar 150cc which was also a on the spur buying decision after falling in love with it after riding extensively for a week during a trip to goa way back in June-2005. I came back home and bought it within a week and ever since then, It served me well and my riding is limited to liesure and trips to gym, jog in the park etc. I have done 23,000kms till date and is still as pristine as all my other rides.

Bullet being an iconic motorycle is always been every bike lover's fantasy including mine. Some can afford it, some cannot and rest think it's too much of a hassle to own/maintain one. I used to be in that last category and always had an impression that bulleteers spend maximum time in garage and probably a fraction of it on road. Dont know how & why I had that impression but, it stayed for a long time and curbed me for seriously considering one

Fast forward to Oct-2011, I read an article about the unveiling of two new variants (Classic Chrome & Desert Storm) of Bullets and their glistening and retro looks totally mesmerized me and it was instant cosmetic love. And, thanks to one of TBHP dinner meet, I was lucky to ride a fellow TBHPian's recently acquired Desert Storm. It took just one short ride to convince me that Iam looking at "White Annihilator" on 2-wheels

Along with that night the thoughts of buying it got discarded.However, during 3rd week of Dec-2011, I was on a forced 3-day vacation with nothing to do. So called wifey at work and said, lets go out forlunch. She instantly agreed. After picking her up early, I mentioned, lets visit an R.E showroom which was a stone's throw away from her workplace. She got excited and said lets do it. She's been casually telling me to buy a TBTS from a long time as she felt it suits my physical personality.

R.E folks were extremely cordial and within 45 minutes, I had taken a test ride of Classic-500 (Aqua Blue) with modified upswept exhaust which was thumping as if its greased lightning and ensured head-turns and envious glances through out our entire 10km test ride. By the end of test ride, I was instantly sold on C-500.Wifey insisted that we should also test ride the TBTS. Without trying to offend TBTS owners, I was never a fan of of that harley style handle and overall sitting posture. I feel it suits only a Harley Davidson and not a Avenger, Enticer, Eliminator or for that matter even a Bullet. I am not sure how many will agree with me but, a black TBTS looks no different than an Avenger.

To keep her happy, took mandatory but, un-interested test ride. As expected, the power was a disappointment especially after riding a C-500 and except for it's better ride comfort, I hated everything else.

"A word of caution to prospective C-350 buyers, please don't take a TD of C-500. It may be injurious to your decision making process "

After convincing wifey, I got her consensus that C-500 was better in more than one way and we (rather,I) decided rightaway that we should be buying a C-500. But, now comes the dilemma which C-500? There are 3 variants (Regular, Chrome and Desert Storm).

To be honest, I am flamboyant inherently by nature so it was pretty obvious that chrome came on top of my choice ladder. Deciding between the maroon and black was easy. One look at both variants and I knew it has to be maroon.

My next question to dealer, how soon can I get this drool worthy piece of machinery?. Apparently, since it's a new model and is a limited edition, company has been sending them to dealerships faster than others to cash in to all its excitement as much as they can. Therefore, I can get to lay my hands on one earliest in 4-5 months. All that excitement died as if someone puntured a balloon.

As my luck would have it, there was one bike available in < 15 days and I had to take instantenous decision whether I would like to move forward or not as there were many takers (from his booking register) and my fortune was that I was talking to the SA face-to-face. I took the plunge without missing a heart beat and paid Rs.1000 immediately to block it and then Rs.25000 within an hour to make it doubly sure.

To further my excitement, this waiting period got expedited to just one week after a few discussions with dealer.

Dec 19th, 2011 : My first visit to dealership for a casual test/joy ride
Dec 22th, 2011 : DP and loan process completed.
Dec 23, 2011 : Dealer calls me and mentions bike is ready for delivery
Dec 26th, 2011 : Took delivery of "Maroon Marauder"

RE Classic Chrome 500 (12,500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!-img_0280.jpg

Last edited by mobike008 : 4th January 2012 at 15:34.
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Old 4th January 2012, 13:56   #3
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Default re: Royal Enfield Classic Chrome 500 : The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home !!!!!


RE Classic Chrome 500 (12,500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!-img_0281.jpg

RE Classic Chrome 500 (12,500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!-img_0297.jpg

RE Classic Chrome 500 (12,500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!-img_0284.jpg

RE Classic Chrome 500 (12,500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!-img_0303.jpg



Looks

In my humble and non-existent bulleteering experience, Classic is the most good looking bullet and feels very nicely built and maintains its original retro looks to the hilt. Over the years, RE has been constantly adding technology and making it more convenient to ride for Bullet lovers.

I totally love it's rear wide angle, uniquely designed tail lamps, oval shaped glistening chrome that houses the air-filter and ofcourse, the signature feature of the classic (it's fat,rotund yet, awesome looking fuel tank)
Paint quality is just above average not as good as other 4-stroke bikes in market. However, where it does not excel in paint quality,it more than makes up on chrome finish which is seen to be beileved.

Take one ride out in the sun and all that gleam is guaranteed to attract attention (some unwarranted included) and literally makes you squint from that brazen shine. Dont take my words, see one upclose in direct sunlight and your hand will reach automatically for your sunglasses.

Overall size of the bike is big and feels heavy but, at same time has some clean lines and its weight is quite intimidating at standstill or during traffic stops. But, Classic surely is the "showstopper" of R.E stable and as confessed by them, it occupies more than 40% of their product sales.

Engine/Performance

Slot in the key (which incidentally is below average quality for a bike of this class, price and standard) and twist it and you can hear the whirring of the engine before the red light disappears. That's an indication that bike is ready to be brought to life. Now the only fear that I had about Bullets in the past was kicking them into life but, now they come with a self-start which made my decision to buy one easy as I detest starting bikes via. a kick rod. Call me lazy, cushy lover or whatever.

You would not beileve it, ever since I got MM, I am yet to successfully start the bike using the kick rod. First time in morning, I try kicking it 3-4 times and then give up and use the self to start the bike.

There is a unique style of kicking a bullet to life. Kick it down till the ground unlike the half-kick we use to start a 4-stroke normal bike and as shown by the dealership seemed quite easy but,in reality i am begining to think it isnt. I reckon will get that unique knack over the next few days. Sigh! till then will have to make do with a self starter

CL500 when it comes to life makes a sound that is music to years. The thump is not too loud nor is it too muted. It's perfectly tuned somewhere in between. And, quite far away from that crazy sound that I experienced from the upswept silencer of the test ride bike.

Thankfully, these days Bullets come with gearshift on left. However, the shift pattern of 1-Down, 4-Up is confusing (atleast to me) as my Pulsar 150cc has all 5-Down. Pulsars which came later had this shift pattern changed to universal which is 1-Down and 4-Up

According to the manual, first 500kms should be ridden at 50kmph. Slot in 1st and give it a fraction of a throttle and it jumps ahead like someone has left the reins of a prancing horse.

Its not horsepower that is talking here, its the immense torque which has to be credited. If you make a mistake of giving it more than required twist of throttle ,it surges forward so fast that you feel as if you are being pulled by a locomotive engine

Initially, you may find the bike heavy but, as it goes into motion, the weight miraculously reduces to manageable level and it loves to thump around at a fast or liesure pace with equal ease. Overtaking is a breeze in real sense, unlike Pulsar, I dont have to downshift, I just grip the clutch lightly and twist the throttle and voila, the required power to overtake is at your behest.I have ridden only 100kms with maximum speed of 60kmph until now. And, 0-60kmph is quite fast. Will share its full blown performance once the run-in period is completed.

In short, Electronic Fuel Injection system based engine is a masterpiece and C-500 is the most contemprary engine amongst other bullets. It has a sensor console on the front which houses 8-sensors for different functions like Lights, Horn, Fuel, Brakes, etc. The stock exhaust as mentioned is muted for sound pollution and official registration reasons. I plan to get a RE fitted upswept exhaust to Maroon Marauder after I complete 1000kms.

According to a senior RE mechanic, upswept will increase 50% of decibal level (not as much as Indore Dome though) and increases fuel efficieny by 4kmpl-5kmpl

To summarize, MM is an excellent piece of engineering. Performance is it's key forte and can happily chug along at 100kmph all day long with absolutely no qualms.

My expectation on fuel efficieny is as follows :-
Initially : 25kmpl-28kmpl
Post 1st service : 30kmpl
On highways : 35kmpl

Btw, an interesting piece of news for newbie bulleteers. EFI engines dont have a petrol reserve button and I even asked the dealer to which he gave me funny look. C-500 has to have a minimum of 3 litres of petrol in tank. However, there is a low fuel warning lamp on the front console to warn you in advance. If the warning lamp blinks and goes away, that's an early reminder to tank up.

But, when the yellow glow sign comes and stays ON, you better rush to a bunk within 5kms-7kms, if you dont then expect to push a 190kgs monster on road with people giving you admonishing stares of "If you couldnt afford petrol, why buy such an expensive and good-looking hunk of a bike"

Gearbox
Have been warned of false neutrals bothering new owners especially before the 1st service but, honestly speaking I have had a smooth run on this front. You just need to be aware that gear shifting is not like other bikes where you shift from 1-N-2-3-4-5. But, its 1-N-2-N-3-4-5 ( or some such pattern where it passes through neutral gear in more than one instance). A nice combination of throttle, clutch and knowing when to shift will easily overcome this so-called false neutral issue.Did experience false neutral but, maybe 3-4 times only and not as rampantly as I feared before purchase.

Having ridden only 100kms till now, I am confident getting used to gearbox will be even more easier as time passes and moreso after the 1st service.

Being used to my Cruze's style of driving so decided to try replicating same here. When in 3rd/4th gear at 30kmph and still the bike pulls so cleanly that its plain astonishing to experience that huge wave of mammoth torque. And, clutch is easy to operate and feels smooth as well. I am hoping it will turn out to be tough as nails as i wouldnt want to be broken down on roadside for a problem as ridiculous as a clutch wire broken.

This reminds me of a funny incident way back in college. I use to ride back to home from Pune regularly on either my or a friend's Shogun. He was a master in slotting gears. He was a puny little fella compared to my size and used to challenge me to change the gear without faltering with each of us sitting as pillion to judge the shift. During that time, he showed me a knack; a small twist of throttle and change gear in the instant of that throttle twist, according to him gears would shift with absolutely no sound. He never used to miss a gear and make that "khat khat" false gear change sound. That used to irritate the hell out of him.

Anyways, I could never do it as good as him but, i did learn a bit of that knack so gear shifting of most bikes havent been an issue ever since.

Kick-start style of a Bullet
I am told by the senior mechanic to bring the kick rod just a little above silencer and kick the rod till it completes the cycle to bring the engine to life. Throttle should be twisted only till its play and not beyond that.

But, I am still yet to master this style and yet to kick start Maroon Marauder for the first time via. "Kick Start"

Ride & Handling

For a first timer like me, Initially I was scared to take fast turns and was quite content to point it straight and open the throttle. however, over time I realized i am getting scared for no reason and this bike can corner easily including dip and swerve with equal aplomb but, only for someone who can manage the bike's weight. I really loved the handling of the bike and was a pleasant surprise to my initial apprehensions.

However, the only issue is that footpegs are a bit too forward and obstruct your leg while taking a turn

The ride is very good. It's after all a big solid bike. It demolishes potholes, speed breakers at speeds below 50kmph and its suspension feels like it can take a lot of beating without batting much of an eyelid.

Front braking is extremely effective and you dont even have to make an effort to pull it towards you. Just holding it will apply the brakes,its that effective. The rear brake which is drum-based is good and does its job effectively but, will know its performance only under hard braking.

This message is for all other bike riders who like me think that RE bikes are meant only for those huge personality guys who can manage its weight. " RE-C500 is like any other well-built bike and can be used and ridden like just that".

It's superb ride and handling characteristics will inspire you to push it further and feels great till the speeds that I have touched till now.

According to me, only problem of riding a bullet is getting stuck in a traffic jam. This is where fun startes waning away. Managing and controlling this bike in a congested traffic situation is no less than going through a nightmare ( well, maybe i am being a bit dramatic) but, then its almost there.

Comfort

The first thing that you feel after sitting on a C-500 is its sheer height. You feel like your sitting on a balcony of 1st floor of a building. Not sure if its because of my height (6ft. 1inch) but, If I keep my back ram-rod straight, I feel like i am floating above all other fellow road users.

The seat is comfortable and handle bars feel perfectly place and everything seems so much in harmony. But, comfort wise I will give more marks to TBTS than Classic as even though i havent done long ride till date, I am sure it wont be too comfortable with that springy seats which adds more on asethetic sense than utility.

In anycase, this bike was bought with plain liesure riding in mind and I dont think it will do more than 500kms/month. Hence, comfort didnt even figure in my buying decision process which itself was almost instantenous. I dont plan to replace any of the stock settings like the handle or seats and spoil its beautiful stock retro look. However, I am hugely tempted to remove the rear seat for a while to bring more chrome out in the open for others to ogle but,that can be done only if wifey permits..LOL!

Wrapping up thoughts :-

I'am one of those fortunate souls to have been struck by lightning twice in a period of 15 months from time I got my White Annihilator (Chevrolet Cruze) and now Maroon Marauder (Classic Chrome-500cc).

Before I got MM, I was completely smitten by WA's brutal performance and till date i am still in awe of WA. Thanks to MM, now whenever I wish I can experience a hair-raising rides on 4-wheels as well as on 2-wheels. Former has capability to pass the landscape in a blur whereas the latter can reach a stage where landscape can be made to look like a blur but, that's not such a good idea as it's best enjoyed at lower speeds.

RE Dealer experience has been a pleasant experience and the little bit of time spent with A.S.S Manager only furthered my appreciable thoughts of their service to their customer.

It again was a classic case of choosing a "Classic" by simply listening to my heart strings while all other strings (mind, wallet, sanity etc..) were trying to tug me away from buying the MM. Well, I'am happy that my heart won this duel again as it rightly should.

P.S: Being a newbie bulleteer, I have already experienced by first ride with Hyderabad Bulleteers group "Hyderabad Wanderers" on a new year ride on Jan 1st with 45+ bulleteers. We almost took Hyderabad on seize that day with our collective thumps. A short write-up on that will come up in future.

Last edited by mobike008 : 4th January 2012 at 15:37.
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Old 4th January 2012, 15:56   #4
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Default re: RE Classic Chrome 500 (9500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!

Pretty exhaustive and long ownership report Pandeyji.
Liked the 1st and 2nd pic of your first post. Infact I'll admit, the 2nd pic is awesome to the core!!
Another impulsive decision, ain't it!!
But this one suits you to the T, made for each other like, I swear!!
I rode on of my elder cousin bullets, way back when I was 17-18 years and the gears and brakes on opposite side of the regular bikes used to confuse me thoroughly. But year riding it is a hair raising experience.
Thrilling, exciting!!
And the Pulsar stays?

Last edited by Fordmanchau : 4th January 2012 at 15:59.
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Old 4th January 2012, 16:18   #5
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Default re: RE Classic Chrome 500 (9500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!

Good Review Avi..quite informative for a prospective buyer like me !! Im torn between TBTS and Classic.
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Old 4th January 2012, 16:24   #6
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Default re: RE Classic Chrome 500 (9500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by mobike008 View Post
And, thanks to one of TBHP dinner meet, I was lucky to ride a fellow TBHPian's recently acquired Desert Storm. It took just one short ride to convince me that Iam looking at "White Annihilator" on 2-wheels
Nice review, Avinash.

So, what is the gift that you are planning to give to the owner of that Desert Storm and also to the person whose idea it was for every TBHPian to try out that bike on that fateful night?
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Old 4th January 2012, 17:07   #7
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Default re: RE Classic Chrome 500 (9500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!

Congrats
That;s one nice exhaustive review
Even i got similar one last month in december.
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Old 4th January 2012, 17:24   #8
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Default re: RE Classic Chrome 500 (9500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!

A big neat review for a big bike
You are lucky to get one in a week!

Do get the up-swept silencer. For 3K, it worth. Got plans to add other accessories? Careful with the kick start job

And the silencer gets pretty hot as you would know and pillion should be careful.
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Old 4th January 2012, 17:58   #9
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Default re: RE Classic Chrome 500 (9500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!

A great thread Avi Bhai. Good to see a detailed review of your MM. Wish you many more miles and thumps and stares on this Thumping Monster you've purchased.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mobike008 View Post
P.S: Being a newbie bulleteer, I have already experienced by first ride with Hyderabad Bulleteers group "Hyderabad Wanderers" on a new year ride on Jan 1st with 45+ bulleteers. We almost took Hyderabad on seize that day with our collective thumps. A short write-up on that will come up in future.
First thing first, it is just WANDERERS. Wanderers are Hyderabad's Ace Bulleteers Group and we are a part of Wanderers Family now. Yeah, it was one hell of a ride riding with those 45+ Bulleteers. Each glance, stare and oooh's heard that day were more than what I expected. Right from the start till finish, it was an awesome experience.

Seriously OT Stuff below:

Quote:
Originally Posted by mobike008 View Post
I feel it suits only a Harley Davidson and not a Avenger, Enticer, Eliminator or for that matter even a Bullet.
Having owned Avenger for close to 6 years and still clocking miles on it, I can say that Avenger has a different handle as compared to HD/TBTS/Enticer.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mobike008 View Post
I am not sure how many will agree with me but, a black TBTS looks no different than an Avenger.
I would have agreed if you would have said Enticer. Avenger in no way looks similar to TBTS. Avenger is more of designed on straight lines as opposed to TBTS/Enticer, which have a dropping design.

This should give you an idea about how each bike looks.

The seating position of Avenger vs TBTS vs Enticer (from L to R)
Name:  3 Bikes on Road.jpg
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The staright handle of Avenger as compared to Harley Styled Butterfly handles of TBTS and Enticer
Name:  3 Bikes Handles.jpg
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Name:  3 Bikes Parked.jpg
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From all the miles i've clocked on my Blk_Spydr, all I can say is Straight Handle of Avenger is a bliss.

A good pic found on google from another motoring forum "BSM".
source: Bajaj Avenger vs RE Thunderbird vs Yamaha Enticer

Last edited by traveloholic : 4th January 2012 at 18:02.
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Old 4th January 2012, 18:07   #10
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Default re: RE Classic Chrome 500 (9500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!

Congratulations Avi Bhai for that super report. I am now truly in a quandry about whether to get my Electra from Vizag or go in for a new CL 500 myself. I spoke to the manager at RE Hyderabad and he 'assured' me that I will be able to get one 'within 5 months' :(

I am checking with the Vizag dealer now. Let us see if one more CL 500 joins the gang.
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Old 4th January 2012, 18:12   #11
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Default re: RE Classic Chrome 500 (9500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Diesel9999 View Post
I am now truly in a quandry about whether to get my Electra from Vizag or go in for a new CL 500 myself. I spoke to the manager at RE Hyderabad and he 'assured' me that I will be able to get one 'within 5 months' :(
I am checking with the Vizag dealer now. Let us see if one more CL 500 joins the gang.
Get your Electra from Vizag, we are a couple of days away from the meet. Heard from a friend that his cousin got a Classic-500 delivered on the same day in Anantapur. Hope, this should also be the case with Vizag. Check with the dealer there. I guess you should not have much issue getting it there as opposed to getting it in Hyderabad. BTW, do we get to hear your THUMP at the Bike Meet?
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Old 4th January 2012, 18:13   #12
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Default re: RE Classic Chrome 500 (9500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!

Congratulations, Mobike.

My suggestions -

1) Do not change the silencer, the long straight looks far better than the angular one.

2) Make it a single seater.

3) One through with the Run In period get the cat cons removed from the silencer to the old CI thump.

4) Be on a look out for a nice butchy & heavy knee guard.

Happy Motoring !!
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Old 4th January 2012, 18:36   #13
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Default re: RE Classic Chrome 500 (9500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!

First off, congrats again Avi, on the shiny brand new bike. She (or should i say he?) looks gorgeous.

Wishing you many years of happy and safe rides. Get a good set of riding gear before you hit the highways.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mobike008 View Post
What I didn't :- EFI engine requires you to maintain minimum 3L of fuel
That's a plus point i would say, wouldn't you agree Avi? I mean, no hassles in tweaking the carb to get the tuning right. Automatically compensates for fuel quality (when on highways) without knocking the engine... and you could even upgrade to an aftermarket ECU some years down the line
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Old 4th January 2012, 18:37   #14
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Default re: RE Classic Chrome 500 (9500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!

Great report, and fab-looking beast!

It was always my childhood fantasy to own a Bullet, and you've revived the fire with your report. My cuz owned one in the 70s and we used to watch in awe when he came thumping into our house.

Do keep us posted with developments.
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Old 4th January 2012, 20:39   #15
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Default re: RE Classic Chrome 500 (9500kms Done):The "Maroon Marauder" THUMP's home!!

First many congrats again on getting the Classic. Even I was positively surprised by the pick up when I rode it for first time in Delhi. I'm sure you'll enjoy many miles to come.

BTW wanted to ask both you and Nikhil, how come both your bikes don't have leg guards. Leg Guards are standard as per law and companies give it as OEM. Do get your leg guards. Its a must have on a heavy bike like the bullet.

Quote:
Originally Posted by n_aditya View Post
That's a plus point i would say, wouldn't you agree Avi? I mean, no hassles in tweaking the carb to get the tuning right. Automatically compensates for fuel quality (when on highways) without knocking the engine... and you could even upgrade to an aftermarket ECU some years down the line
Actually no because the domestic model doesn't come with lambda sensor so
air-fuel ratio change according to outside oxygen level doesn't happen. I would say that should be the first mod you should do!

Cheers
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